What a field day for the heat
A thousand people in the street
Singing songs and carrying signs
Mostly saying, "hooray for our side"

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Weekend Linkee-poo could hang out by the pool

Pixar's storytelling rules done in Lego.

Use what works, dump the rest. Or, if what you're doing isn't working, maybe you need to try something else?

"This sentence has five words." If you want a quick lesson on sentence and paragraph structure and pacing.

Cat Rambo on getting away with wordy prose. There is a line you can sidle right up to, but if you cross it woe will come to you. I also hope that poetic prose doesn't always equate to wordy.

Best Clippy Evar. And if you don't know Clippy or get the humor, count yourself lucky.

Tobias Buckell on quantity producing quality. Having seen these arguments up close, yep.

Why we can't have nice things. A review of Elysium. One of the most unique critiques I've ever received was being told my words were my own.

"I’m going to say it again because it’s important: There is no wrong way to have a body." Wise Bear is wise.

Vince informs us that August 8th was apparently the International Day Of The Female Orgasm. Now there's holiday I can get behind.

Living with 4 cats (who was recently the only human at home), I approve this message.

Jim Hines' comic regarding sexual harassment and the various canned responses.

"(W)atching these discussions is like watching an adult struggling to reach an agreement with a child who literally doesn't understand what a compromise is." An allegory on how our divided government "works", at least from the conservative side. It's either an incredibly cynical play, or just gross incompetence. These days I'm not sure which. (Grokked from the Slactivist)

North Carolina and buyer's remorse. I'm not so optimistic as this author that people will realized they went the wrong way with electing in a bunch of social conservatives when they thought they were getting fiscal conservatives. And the damage might already be too great. To paraphrase Machiavelli, do your big evil first and people will forget and forgive. (Grokked from the Slactivist)

"Researchers have 'resurrected' a 4 billion-year-old protein that may shed light on how life evolved on Earth." Someone send this lab 20 copies of "Jurassic Park", stat! (Grokked from Dan)

Apparently I'm out of the loop. Seems there's new energy efficiency standards for the ceiling fan industry that they're all up in arms over. Except, "The efficiency standards for ceiling fans were requested by the industry itself so they wouldn't have to deal with a patchwork of state-by-state regulations, and the standards were approved in 2005. For those keeping score at home, in 2005, there was a Republican White House, a Republican-run Senate, and a Republican-run House." By why let facts get in the way of a good rage against the Obama administration. (Grokked from the Slactivist)

"Tomorrow’s politicians, civil servants, police officers, teachers, journalists and CEOs are being created today. These people don’t know how to use computers, yet they are going to be creating laws regarding computers, enforcing laws regarding computers, educating the youth about computers, reporting in the media about computers and lobbying politicians about computers. Do you thinks this is an acceptable state of affairs?" It's an oft told story about how "the kids" are so techno-literate. They are users of technology, but most of them don't understand it. (Grokked from Mer Haskell)

More on that PA wackaloon. Wackaloon knows no political affiliation.

Speaking of whackaloons, Eric has a theory about the GOP policies regarding birth control and abortion. I think I agree with Erich and his conclusion about the direction of these policies, but not so much which his final reasoning. After all, an impoverished, cheap labor force to those who know history can become an army, but to others is a business strategy.

"Well, okay. Christians say that. But it’s not enough. We cannot just hope for the kingdom to come, squeak out the closing hymn, and go have coffee. That’s just not helpful." It lightens my steely, flinty heart that some Christians in the US still get it. With all the flash and noise from ecumenical, apostolic and eschatology battles, some people still get it.


Eric said...

Something that I'm not sure those outside North Carolina understand (and there's no reason they should, because they have no reason to follow NC politics): the recent triumph of the GOP had surprisingly little to do with fiscal conservatism or social conservatism of conservatism at all: (Democrat) Beverly Perdue's administration was fairly terrible, there were several scandals involving prominent Democrats in the State House, and the economy has been in a wreck since the housing bubble imploded and the banking crisis occurred. A lot of people were voting against the Democrats, and two-party politics being what they are, that meant they voted for Republicans.

To the extent that there was a social conservatism versus fiscal conservatism issue, it was merely to the extent that some Republicans may have pulled a bait-and-switch in their districts, and Governor Pat McCrory campaigned on his history as a moderate, pro-business mayor when the reality is he's simply an unprincipled career politician who will go with the flow (whether the flow is going along with a mostly-Democratic city council in Charlotte or going along with a mostly-Republican State House in Raleigh).

People are unhappy with what this General Assembly has done. Even conservatives. That doesn't mean they won't be re-elected: they've taken the opportunity to gerrymander the hell out of the state and have passed legislation to make it much more difficult for young folks, the elderly, and African Americans to vote. (Though this ironically brings up another point for guarded optimism: state history around here is that previous efforts to disenfranchise have resulted in African-American churches mobilizing to get the vote out. So there's that.)

This isn't offered as a defense, so much as an explanation. What's happened here in my home state is completely unprecedented. We'll see whether the damage endures.

Steve Buchheit said...

Hey Eric, here in Ohio we have a very conservative minority who have rigged the elections to come out the majority every time. However, after our Gov. Kasich was elected and our GOP controlled house and senate began pumping out all those economic stimulus plans of restricting abortions and breaking union, a lot of people also started having buyers remorse. However, now that we're 2 years down the pike, the GOP has gotten a little savvier and the fights aren't as public. To that end, a lot of the populous here doesn't see that they're continuing to do the same thing, only they aren't doing it in the open. So they all go back to sleep.

And we also had a Democratic administration that was perceived as "doing it all wrong" (even though we've gone from 2nd in the nation in job building to 47th since the GOP came to power). So the GOP swept in everywhere. They also gerrymandered the hell out of our state and they're also talking about more restrictions on voting (mostly because all those minorities went out and go IDs).

So I guess what I'm saying is that I don't think NC is so unprecedented. You can add Ohio, PA, WI, and a few others to the list where the GOP pulled a bait-and-switch. What remains to be seen is if the recovery continues its anemic course if that flashes back on the local politicians or if they'll have done enough "fiscally conservative" press humpings that they'll be re-elected.

After all, "throw the bums out" always tends to be an admonition made to people in other districts to throw their bums out while we keep our own.

Eric said...

Yeah, if I think about the failed Wisconsin recall, I'm liable to get depressed. I'm gonna keep thinkin' them happy thoughts....

Steve Buchheit said...

The good news is the WI recall also ran up against people's natural inclination to "not rock the boat." I have a feeling as long as the Dems run a good game, Scott Walker will have a lot of time on his hands to run for President.