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, October 27, 2013

Weekend Linkee-poo ain't heavy, he's my brother

"For whatever reason, the average person seems to think of writers and artists as aimless dreamers, unwilling or incapable of buckling down and getting even the simplest tasks done. They dream that pursuing a career in the arts might be fun to do, but not practical, and the workplace is all about practical." On being a writer and getting a day job. While he talks about the perception of writers as being idealist dreamer instead of hard working, he also doesn't mention that employers don't really like it when you're not 100% dedicated to your job (see later link on at will employment).

Random Michelle with more on they have always fought.

Tobias Buckell with some thoughts on the coming transportation paradigm. As someone who has often had a commute longer than 45 minutes, I have had the fortune to also use the train and the bus as parts of those commutes. Even with the drawbacks of such transportation, I would far better prefer those than a self-driving car. When I was able to take the bus or train I burned through books at a furious rate. I had some interesting conversations with people I would have never met otherwise. Yes, give me a good public transportation system anytime.

Jason Sandford with some thoughts on some local political advertising. Yea, no reason to actually make the judge green, the designer could have used green in other ways to be memorable.

Terri Windling with a story for the birds. Wait, I mean of the birds (lots of cool bird mythology in there).

So, you may be asking yourself, what's new in death? Well, that's a good question. And in case you want to see the award winners for the annual Design for Death, you can check them out here.

The SEP Field that surrounds the rise of antibiotic resistant strains of diseases. Yea, not like this won't bite us in the arse at some point. For those who don't believe in evolution, this isn't a problem. For those of us who live in reality, this should be a matter of concern (because nobody is really working on new or advanced antibiotics, because there's no money in them). (Grokked from the Slactivist)

A CT scanner at full speed without its cover on. Stick your head in there. (Grokked from Jay Lake)

Phil Plait wants to eat your brains. Wait, he's not a zombie. I mean he wants to bend your brain around a few visual illusions. (Grokked from the Slactivist)

I can't say I haven't been waiting for this fight. Watching the rise of the "Religious Right" and the other evangelical movements involvement in politics I've been waiting for the inevitable schism as the "true believers" descend into squabbling amongst themselves. Surely this isn't a new thing (Enlightenment anybody?), but it had appeared that I may have been indulging in wishful thinking as the groups maintained an uneasy alliance through troubled times. But lately the voices of "I'm the apostle of the True Word and you ain't" have been growing stronger as proponents start their squabble for ever shrinking pieces of pie. This is why religion in government is not chocolate in peanut-butter. Eventually one sect gains an upper hand and uses that toe-hold to whip the other sects. For modern day examples I give you the sectarian squabbles in the Middle-East.

Eric points out the troll. Yes, Virginia, there are trolls in the media.

A Finnish group thinks they've found a vaccine for Type I diabetes. Well, to the virus that can destroy Pancreatic Islets which produce insulin.

And you thought the black death was no more. Actually, IIRC, bubonic plague kills about 7 people in the US every year. As that NPR report describes, it's much more rampant in small mammal populations. It's baaaack.

In case you ever wondered why I'm doing 80 hour weeks on this reboot. "Most people seem to think that First Amendment-ish freedoms—the freedom of not merely speech but of expression, of personal style, etc.—apply in the workplace. They don’t… Unless you have a union, which ensures that you can only be fired for just cause, you’re often screwed." It's called "at will employment." Which means as long as your boss wants you to be hired, you're hired. And the moment they no longer want/need you, you're gone. I'm not a brony, but it could be that my boss just doesn't like beards. Sure, they'll have to pay unemployment, but that's little comfort. (Grokked from the Slactivist)

"So, the next time you hear a Republican talk about how the individual mandate simply must be stopped, or at least delayed. Ask them why they’re so opposed to a plan that they came up with in the first place?" An article on the Heritage Foundation's original proposal for health care, from 1989, and it includes the individual mandate. (Grokked from Jay Lake)

That fast food you've been eating? It's cost you almost $4 billion a year in taxes. How about that for an argument of why we should increase the minimum wage. Four billion is more than most programs that the Tea Party want to cut. (Grokked from the Slactivist)

Sen. Inhofe says if he had been on Obamacare he would have died. Seems the good senator was discovered to have seriously clogged arteries when he went for a routine colonoscopy. I'll forgo my usual cynicism of saying, "and that would have been a bad thing?" and instead point out that not only does Sen. Inhofe qualify for Medicare, he was probably using his government supplied health insurance to get both the colonoscopy and the emergency surgery done. Now to be fair, that heath care insurance is probably a private company providing it, which is why he could have had arteries so clogged he was "nearly (dead)" by the time his problem was discovered. And if he could barely make it to the surgery table, but was going in for a colonoscopy, is that a ringing endorsement of his health insurance? The ironies of this story are just too great (not to mention, Obamacare is not socialized medicine by any measure. Not to mention, in all those countries with socialized medicine, if you have a medical emergency you would have surgery right away. But here in the US, with Medicare, our own form of "socialized medicine" I have a friend who couldn't get a heart valve replacement for 3 years. Not because of delaying the procedure, but because of "anti-fraud" measures and Congressionally mandated rules, his heart pumping capacity was not bad enough for him to qualify for the surgery. It nearly killed him twice. When he had those episodes, Medicare would have paid for his surgery, but his doctors deemed him too fragile for surgery. By the time he recovered, his heart flow was too good to qualify for surgery. So, Sen. Inhofe, why don't you fargin' fix that (I know the answer to that, the good senator would also like to end Medicare). (Grokked from Jay Lake)

"But (Rep.) Yoho didn’t listen to them about the shutdown. And look how that turned out." Well, look at how he thought it turned out for him. (Grokked from the Slactivist)

"Think about what he’s saying there, the next time you call for a policeman or a fireman, or listen to the hurricane track forecast from the national weather service, or you throw away some food in your pantry because it was recalled due to salmonella and you’re glad you heard the warning before you ate any of it. Think about it the next time you drive on the Interstate Highway System, or fly somewhere." Or just think about all the things that were protected during the shutdown and all those things the whackaloon conservatives wanted to open up quickly because people actually missed it when their government worked for them. (Grokked from the Slactivist)

"'The president in no way, shape or form directed the Marine Corps to change our uniform cover,' according to the Marine Corps statement. 'We are looking for a new cover for our female Marines for one overriding reason: The former manufacturer went out of business'" But lets not let reality get in the way of a good whackaloon talking point. (Grokked from Jay Lake)

"This is what happens when laws give officials the authority to treat fertilized eggs, embryos and fetuses as if they are already completely separate from the pregnant woman…" Incarcerating pregnant women is only one of the many reasons this whole "rights of the fetus" and "unborn" children mindsets are complete insanity.

Oh look, real election fraud. Wait, it's a conservative. Again. Never mind. Nothing to see here citizen. (Grokked from the Slactivist)

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