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07 December 2013 @ 06:40 am
Yet more to deal with - 21 November - 5 December 02013  
Hello again. Let's begin with a lion cub playing in the leaves.

Continuing onward, the Air Force Academy has member of the now-defunct "ex-gay therapy": organization Exodus International as the overseer of cadet counseling. Which is mandatory for cadets. The Air Force academy seems to have this type of problem more than others...

...but that could be peanuts compared to the difficulty of getting divorced in a state that refuses to recognize your legal marriage.

How about women being awesome, from a sixteen year-old monster truck driver who will be able to go Ivy League schools, thanks to crushing her SATs, First Lady, Michelle Obama, feminist icon (even if her feminism doesn't jibe with white expectations), Jordanian women participating in poetry slams, and Ms. Lawrence, when told that she did not look properly thin enough for Hollywood, channeled her inner Samuel L. Jackson (or Hugh Jackman) and told them to go fuck themselves.

The President may be feeling that attitude toward noisemakers claiming he's a godless atheist because he read a version of the Gettysburg Address that does not contain the words "under god" and the faction of the government responsible for the lowest number of bills passed by a Congress in history, a faction that runs perilous;y close to not even being able to pass bills that make sure the food market functions correctly ...but instead, he gets to let action do the talking, having a deal with Iran to roll back their nuclear program that has hardliners in The United States, Israel, and Iran unhappy about the deal, matters moving forward toward the complete destruction of Syria's chemical weapons stockpile, as well as a conference set for January 2014 to begin the process of ending Syria's civil war, prisoners at Guantanamo Bay able to plead their case to be able to leave the facility, a Treasury that intends to crack down on spending by anonymous donors and organizations that explicitly endorse and support political candidates while masquerading as ":social welfare organizations", and a Senate majority that said "Fuck this filibuster nonsense" with regard to presidential nominees and Appeals court and lower court appointments.

There's still a lot to go, though, including the giant need for excellent science and science-based education, right from the beginning of schooling.

A primer on the positive value of "negative" methods of coping with trauma and violence.

You, too, can create your own Giant Squid Pillow. Or, for the more DIY types, weapons and explosives that can be manufactured only with items bought past TSA screening points in airports.

Women in Open Source projects, who have happily had a lot less sexism to deal with, it seems, than other women getting involved in open source projects. Speaking of Open Source, Glitch, a 2D browser-based adventure game, has had all of its code and assets released into the public domain. Which means a large amount of creative possibilities for anyone so inclined and able to use or unpack the Flash assets.

The Supreme Court of the United States will decide whether for-profit corporations are permitted to impose the religious beliefs of their executives on their employees, with regard to things like contraception being covered by health insurance, something the Affordable Care Act requires. Oklahoma's Appeals court found they can, another said no. The Court does not generally rule predictably on anything, so we have to hope they'll decide to trust women. Especially if oral emergency contraceptives have a higher failure rate on women who aren't rail-thin.

The stories of the still-nonexistent War on Christmas are beginning again, with a town's Christian celebration changing from having official government support to being an affair put on by private citizens, school-based Christian toy drives becoming Christian toy drives happening on public streets without the appearance of school endorsement (also a healthy dose of "humanists are bullies who want children to starve", despite the complaint having nothing to do with the program and everything to do with whose resources were being used to promote it), and outrage that the Postal Service isn't promoting their explicitly Christian stamps alongside ones that mention other VEWPRFs. If you would like to see the real war of Christmas, examine not the privileged, but the disprivileged and how they are treated if they wish to celebrate their VEWPRF.

Walmart is very invested in having you believe all of their retail staff are super-psyched about working on Thanksgiving and the day afterward, with one of their top executives promoting a message for the "Proud Associates" to use on their Twitter accounts. This is the same Walmart that continues to have labor disputes and retaliates against workers that take part in protests and that wants its own low-wage workers to donate supplies so that other low-wage workers can have enough to eat at their harvest feast celebrations, instead of, say, paying them a wage they can live and purchase groceries on.

The Sears Holdings CEO applied all of his Wall Street and Ayn Rand economic knowledge to running Sears and KMart, and got stupidly rich individually while destroying the company. Take heed from his lesson, oh corporate giants, and stop screwing your workers and venerating Rand.

Penny Arcade wants one person to do the job of four, with no work-life balance at all, and for low pay compared to the job requirements. And will happily keep making trainloads of cash for themselves while their new hire exhausts themselves.

Stanford University offers an interactive map of the Roman Empire, including the varied ways to get from point A to point B, how long it takes by those routes, and what that trip would cost. Lots of very detailed data.

Last for tonight, three tales of an inn, its town, and a girl in grey who knows her stories, what the Epic of Gilgamesh might have sounded like in its native tongue, and poems read by Tom Hiddleston, who is enjoying quite a bit of fame for playing Marvel's Loki.

And a study that says cats know when you're talking to them, they just don't care.

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nancylebov: green leavesnancylebov on December 7th, 2013 03:23 pm (UTC)
Michelle Obama is very bad in re fat-- she frames what she's doing in terms of fighting obesity rather than improving health for both thin and fat people, she's put her children at age 8 and 11 on a weight loss diet, and she's going to appear for the second time on The Biggest Loser.

It's a shame people didn't read Atlas Shrugged more carefully-- I'm not saying it's perfect, but it's a sustained attack on crony capitalism. It's in favor of people who love their businesses as a means to do useful work-- they love supplying value to their customers *and* making money.

I'm not in entire agreement with the negativity article, but it's at least a large partial truth.
Silver Adept: Defaultsilveradept on December 8th, 2013 02:16 am (UTC)
Her stance on fat is not good, but I think we can say both "Michelle Obama represents feminism, just not in ways that are historically considered such" and "Michelle Obama's stance on fat and HAES leaves much to be desired" without the universe collapsing.