And they come with no warning,
nature loves her little surprises.
Continual crisis!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Wingnut Wednesday

So, can we talk about something else yet? Not yet. My guess is a few people who thought it was perfectly fine for the government to do warrantless wiretaps are going to be very upset very quickly. Okay, well, I'm gonna talk about something else for the moment.

Jim Hines is publishing the results of his novel study (or study of novelists or something like that). This link is to his third article on the results (there are links for parts I and II in the article). Some interesting stuff in there.

Ned and Jane is a fund raiser for the Alpha SF/F/H Workshop for Young Writers. In return for coughing up $5 you get your own copy of a girl-meet-zombie story. You know, not to mention helping fund a scholarship to an excellent workshop for young writers. I was way past the age limit by the time Alpha started, even farther than when I learned about it. I haven't been directly involved with the workshop, but I've seen the teens who have gone through the experience and know some who have been. From what I've seen it's an excellent program. Writing isn't a zero sum game (if it were, I'd say let the little buggers wallow in the wilderness us, their older comrades in arms, had to, but, you know, it's not one). Encouraging younger writers just means that when I've hit my dotage, many years from now, I'll still have great SF/F/H stories to read. (saw this many places, but I think Tobias Buckell's was first)

And typing about Tobias, he has been posting It's All Just a Draft. Some thoughts on writing, advice, and his own story. I haven't read it yet. I could read it for free, but Tobias is doing the donation thing for it, and I'd like to chip in. Well, I might read it and chip in later. I'm a big fan of Tobias, have been for many years. Seriously, get me talking about breaking into writing and Tobias' name will come up quickly in that conversation, especially his "Getting Past Being Joe Blowneopro." I am so sure there's excellent nuggets of info in there, I'm giving the link before I even check it out. Yeah, he's that good.

And finally a non-writing link. On this evening's New Hour on PBS, they had a story on how Yemen Lacks Counter-Terrorism Resources to Halt Jihadists. The report is by Margaret Warner and she does an excellent job. And why I'm pointing it out, is she interviews our American Ambassador in Yemen who actually gets it. He understands what terrorism is all about (well, a lot of them over there do because they are actually fighting it themselves). Oh, and since we're discussing it, bonus points to anybody who remembers the first use of a hellfire missile on a Predator drone, who it targeted and where it happened (no, the answer isn't in the story).


Sheila said...

Good point about Alpha -- writing is not a zero-sum game, and that could also be said of most things in life. I don't know why people on this side of the pond think that if someone wins or gets help, then someone else loses or has something taken away from them.

Could that be the source of some of the rancor on health care reform? Some people think that if the poor and uninsured get coverage, then they will lose some of their health benefits and those with insurance will pay a lot more money.

Honestly, folks, the countries with the most equality (social and economic) are the countries with the highest scores in happiness. When it comes down to it, doesn't everyone want to be happy? Even Republicans and Tea Party people?

Steve Buchheit said...

I think the rancor on healthcare was all political calculation and didn't concern anything else. The opposition knew if it got passed, the Democratic brand would be re-energized to the levels seen in the 70s-90s. And this is why they continue to attack it. It's an attempt to blunt the positive affects this will have on the economy.

And while there are proposals to weaken it being floated, there's also some legislation that will strengthen it.

Now maybe we can actually talk about a public option, or medicare buy-in. And by the time all the provisions take hold maybe we can talk about single-payor.

sheila said...

Gosh, I hope we can talk about public option and medicare buy-in, and eventually single payer.

Too bad the legislation didn't come in time to help us (my COBRA coverage is done at the end of July), but it would help to know that there's light at the end of the tunnel and it is sunlight, not the oncoming headlight from the speeding G.O.P. Express.

Ned and Jane said...

Dear Mr. Buchheit,

As the Ned and Jane fundraiser has come to a close, we would like to thank you for taking the time to promote our efforts. The Alpha staff has recently invited twenty talented students to attend this year's workshop, and we cannot tell you how much we appreciate that you have helped to facilitate their education. Without bloggers like you raising awareness of the fundraiser, the staff would be unable to assist those students with financial limitations.

You may have noticed that the Alpha homepage has a section called "Alpha Angels" to recognize our advertisers for their promotion. Please, let us know if we can include you on this list, or if you would prefer to remain anonymous. (You can reach us at nedandjane at gmail dot com .)

Thank you, again; your assistance means the world to a new year of Alpha students.

Best wishes,

The Ned and Jane Team