Kansas woman told birth certificate wasn’t enough to prove citizenship for passport | News | kctv5.com
>After weeks of unreturned phone calls and unanswered questions, Barbara contacted U.S. Senator Jerry Moran’s office for help. The senator’s office launched an inquiry and followed up with another. A few days later, Barbara received her passport in the mail, with no explanation.
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12 days ago
Is Burning Man an Idealized Silicon Valley? - The New Stack
And the other way it is like Silicon Valley is that it depends on worker exploitation. cf Loomis
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16 days ago
The Big Idea: Jaine Fenn – Whatever
>This positive early experience left me with a yen to one day write a book whose protagonist driven to discover how the universe works without the tools or support of a scientific establishment.
Haven't read it yet, but Scalzi is often dead on with his Big Idea picks.
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16 days ago
What Arguments About Sex Ed Are Really About | FiveThirtyEight
>Though I also think “don’t teach values in school” is kind of hilarious. How do you even talk about sex without also talking about values around it?
to_blog? 
16 days ago
Basra, Iraq protests: Protesters have torched nearly every government building - Vox
>Official Iraqi government statistics put the chemical contamination of Basra’s water at 100 percent, and the bacterial pollution at 50 percent.
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16 days ago
A closer look at DNA storage | Mad File Format Science
>You don’t need compression when your device holds zettabytes…
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17 days ago
DNA as data storage | Mad File Format Science
>Imagine that any DNA encoding generated some kind of monster. You’d have the stuff of a Charles Stross horror novel, as GIF files went rampaging.
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17 days ago
The Gospel According to the Rumble Ponies | Fred Clark
>That question is a part of Colin Kaepernick’s Christian faith in a way that it is not a part of Tim Tebow’s — or at least not a part of the faith of Tebow’s white evangelical fans. Both men are, as we have said and seen, evangelical Christians. Both are undeniably evangelical in their piety, their devotion, their biblicism, their soteriology (narrowly understood). But the faith of Colin Kaepernick is larger than the faith of the Tebow-loving white evangelicals who despise him for seeking first God’s justice (Matthew 6:33 — another good first-year-Awana verse). It includes something that confuses, confounds, and *infuriates* white evangelicals.
>All of which illustrates why it is necessary — theologically necessary — to draw a clear distinction between evangelical Christianity and *white* evangelical Christianity. That distinction is not primarily demographic. It’s *theological.*
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17 days ago
A sleeping student wouldn’t wake up in class. So an officer pulled out her Taser. - The Washington Post
The police officer obviously should be fired, but why did the teacher and principal call for her in the first place? A student who is *that* difficult to wake isn't a disciplinary problem; it would make more sense to call the school nurse to see if there's a health issue!
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18 days ago
Safety Culture and the Associated Press | Hapgood
>When norms are clear (don’t cut in line) they are more enforceable than when they are vague (don’t be a dick at the grocery store).
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18 days ago
Boots Riley vs. Spike Lee: The Sorry to Bother You director tweeted a blistering critique of BlacKkKlansman.
Troubling. :(
I do think Lee was trying to make a point about needing people within the system to push for change as well as people outside of the system bringing the tension to the surface. But if he had to make *that* many changes for Stallworth to be a hero, I don't know if that argument is actually tenable.
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5 weeks ago
Baltimore police officer indicted after violent beating caught on video  - Vox
The officer who stood by and let the beating happen should be fired. A criminal assault was occurring right in front of him and he did nothing.
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5 weeks ago
How to Recover from Romantic Heartbreak - Scientific American
Focusing on the bad aspects of one's former partner doesn't seem healthy. A realistic remembrance of the relationship does.
As does changing one's idea of a "successful" relationship. Did one learn new things? Grow as a person? Have good times? A success doesn't mean being together until one person dies.
Also, the focus on the flaws approach doesn't seem to be useful if one wants to remain friends.
to_blog? 
6 weeks ago
Why hardware makers like Roku rarely make their money from hardware.
>Most hardware manufacturers—even big ones—can’t command Apple’s level of supply chain wizardry…
Media still not understanding that the key to Apple's success is its software moat. The user experience is differentiate enough that their are plenty of people who won't consider a non-Apple product. And Apple is the only company with the mix of high skill at *both* hardware and software.
The set top business is hard because user experience matters less. The software (both tvOS
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7 weeks ago
The Future Is Going to Be Great! – Mother Jones
I wonder about Kevin's assertation that genetics and epigentics will be found to be overwhelming determinative of talent and skill. How will that square with studies that show children of wealthier and/or highly educated parents do better academically? (For example, Ta-Nehisi Coates attributes a lot of his success as a writer to his family having a ton of books around and the philosophy that he should learn about Black and African history as a child. So it's not *simply* wealth).
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8 weeks ago
This is what no-deal Brexit actually looks like
>No advanced country has committed hara-kiri like this.
I wonder if they'll regain some sanity at the last moment and reverse Brexit?
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8 weeks ago
Trump’s California fuel economy waiver plan violates conservative principles - Vox
>US conservatives want less regulation. Arguments about whether a regulation’s costs exceed its benefits, whether or not it creates “certainty,” whether or not it abrogates “states’ rights,” or whether or not the regulated companies want it are used the same way conservatives use arguments about the deficit — situationally, to block Democratic initiatives. Republicans are never restrained by those principles themselves. Their commitment is to deregulation itself, regardless of context or circumstances.
Unless the regulations limit women's right to reproductive autonomy. Then Republicans *love* regulations.
to_blog 
8 weeks ago
Scripting News: Not left or right
The left and the right are not monolithic. They are useful descriptors of historical political/social movements and beliefs.
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9 weeks ago
Manton Reece - Replacing 1 billion-user platforms
But ways of communicating across smaller platforms. Micro.blog is great, but will it ever contain BLM, Palestinian Activists, Sex Workers, etc?
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10 weeks ago
The Marshmallow Replication by You Are Not So Smart 🔗
Parents shouldn't experiment on children!
And people need to stop looking for "cost effective" silver bullets for complex problems.
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12 weeks ago
Here's an Honest Answer to That Dumb Twitter Rant on Abortion
Berny Belvedere response to Patrick S. Tomlinson [Fertility Clinic Hypothetical](http://www.scarymommy.com/patrick-s-tomlinson-twitter-abortion):
>(1) The standard liberal position crucially involves the view that every individual has equal value.
>(2) In a scenario roughly comparable to Tomlinson’s, where a standard liberal had to choose between saving 100 random people, or their own spouse or child, someone who believed that every individual has equal value would easily and unproblematically choose to save the hundred random individuals.
>(3) But if a standard liberal were actually put in such a scenario, he would choose to save the family member.
>(4) Thus, standard liberals don’t really believe every individual has equal value.
>(5) The liberal position is a sham.
**But** the "standard liberal" (or at least a rigorous utilitarian) would admit this was the *morally wrong* choice and, if they had the courage of their convictions, they'd save the 100 people.
We see this choice played out in movies all the time. It happens three times in _Infinity War_: Quill and the Scarlet Witch make the choice to kill their romantic partner to stop Thanos. Both times it is portrayed as the courageous choice.
Would the average "pro-life" person argue that saving the embryos over a 5 year-old is the morally correct action?
* * *
**The Trolley Problem**
>Many people who say they would pull the lever in the first scenario then say they would not push the fat man in the second scenario.
If you are certain that pushing the fat man will save the others, you should do it. However, this is much less likely to be the certain outcome than pulling the lever. The question of killing a person to *potentially* save the lives of others is a much more difficult question.
The difference isn't only that the second is more gruesome.
* * *
>Let the thousand human lives haunt me afterwards; in this moment, they cannot haunt me more than seeing a helpless child be swept up in a fire.
This avoids the question. Ignoring what you *would* do, do you believe you *should* save the embryos?
If you don't, you are anti-abortion, not pro-life.
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12 weeks ago
Balkinization: "Constitutional Super Hardball"
>Given the current narrow balance of the Senate, if Senate Democrats orchestrated a walkout (our suggestion would be they all go to Mexico City though Canada might be nicer in the summer months), the Senate would only be able to reach 50 members (because Senator McCain is ill) which is less than “a majority,” and therefore would be unable to “do business” (e.g., act on nominations).
My friend calls this constitutional “super hardball."
I think it's time to play.
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12 weeks ago
The Laff Box—99% Invisible
This changed my entire opinion of laugh tracks. They were made a single person *playing* what amounts to a laugh organ. It's like a laugh *design*.
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12 weeks ago
I am now an alarmist
>That is what Niemöller ashamedly confesses in his famous poem. He’s not abstractly examining how “they” operated, he’s telling us how he enabled them to do so. The cry of his heart, which he repeated for the rest of his days, was the warning “Don’t do what I did.” He warned everyone, everywhere to speak out and speak up at the very earliest signs of danger. For Niemöller, there was no worry about speaking out too soon, only the deadly danger and abiding shame of speaking out too late.
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12 weeks ago
Why I Will Always Write About Appalachia—Literary Hub
>My hometown of Haldeman, Kentucky has vanished—literally removed from maps—its mines nothing but empty holes in the ground. The railroad tracks have been stripped from the earth and the gravel sold. The stores are gone. My school is closed. The government shut down the post office and rescinded the ZIP code.
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12 weeks ago
Oklahoma just voted to legalize medical marijuana - Vox
>With 92 percent of precincts reporting, 56 percent of voters supported medical marijuana, while 43 percent opposed it.
Maybe our stupid federal prohibition will end sooner then I thought. When medical marijuana easily passed in a deep red state, the tides have turned.
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june 2018
Eschaton: The Internet Of Shit
>>Their stories are part of a new pattern of behavior in domestic abuse cases tied to the rise of smart home technology. Internet-connected locks, speakers, thermostats, lights and cameras that have been marketed as the newest conveniences are now also being used as a means for harassment, monitoring, revenge and control.
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june 2018
Supreme Court Rules That Police Need a Warrant to Seize Your Cell Phone Location Records—Mother Jones
>And let’s face it, if you could travel back in time and ask James Madison if he thought it would be OK for the government to use a magic device that tracked the precise movements of virtually every human being in the country, what do you think he’d say? That is, what do you think he’d say before he dropped dead of apoplexy?
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june 2018
Donald Trump Threw Starburst Candies at Angela Merkel, Said 'Don't Say I Never Give You Anything'
You gotta be kidding me. We have a sadistic 5 year old running our country! 😱
to_blog 
june 2018
THE LUCKY COUNTRY | Gin and Tacos
>Whether families are being separated or not is a sideshow to the growing population of people being detained indefinitely with unclear or nonexistent rights. Their numbers are growing exponentially under Trump and it won't be long before America is searching for its own Nauru where they can be boxed up and put out of sight.
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june 2018
Both Sides Do It, The Unshakeable Script—Lawyers, Guns
>Here is a comprehensive list of Republican senators who support the bill (to end the policy of placing children in concentration camps):
In case the quotation is unclear, that's zero Republican Senators.
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june 2018
driftglass: Why Does The New York Times Keep Handing Columns To Conservative Nitwits: S.E. Cupp Edition
>Except there is one, little problem:
Ms. Mauer is not, in fact, a persuadable swing voter who might be susceptible to the charms of the Democratic party if only Democrats weren't such
condescending coastal elite Hollywood Kenyan abortion-on-demand, flag-hating social justice warriors.
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june 2018
THE GOLDEN AGE OF GRIFT—Gin and Tacos
>As a teacher, literally nothing could be less important than what the students prefer to be called. Steve. Mary. Cipher. Iron Man. Ming the Merciless. Question Q. Mysterio. My Little Pony. Like, there is no conceivable reality in which what a student asks me to call them (whether it is a proper name or some infantile nickname) matters. We just work together. I am paid to do a job, and that makes some things about the students my problem – whether they do the assigned work, behaviors they may engage in during our brief time together in class that violate school policy, assigning them a grade, and that's pretty much it.
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june 2018
'This calls for wisdom: let anyone with understanding calculate ...'
>If you buy any of that, at all — if you think Sessions or Sanders is making anything even remotely like a credible argument about what “the Bible” has to say about Trump’s policies on refugees, asylum-seekers, immigrants, aliens, and strangers — then you’re wrong. You’ve gone wrong. You’re doing wrong, becoming wrong, being wrong. >Because your deeds are evil.
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june 2018
Trump cites as a negotiating tool his policy of separating immigrant children from their parents—The Washington Post
>Some Republican immigration hard-liners, however, continue to hold out, saying they will not support any path to citizenship and **do not support any accommodations to keep families together**. “I don’t see a reason to spend the money doing that,” Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa) said in an interview Friday. “And I don’t see how you do that without having a suite for every self-described family unit.” (Emphasis added)
Abusing children is evil. Abusing children to score a political win is soulless.
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june 2018
SMALT-The smart home device that elevates your dining experience
I don't know if I'm ready for the world's first interactive centerpiece and smart salt dispenser to enhance my dining experience.
h/t [Do By Friday](http://dobyfriday.com/83)
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june 2018
Some Notes on Bible Translation
>Language and translation—especially when they involve documents written down thousands of years ago and copied over centuries—is rarely simple and straightforward.
Would you mix up a boating rope and a camel?
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june 2018
War and Reintegration – Yonatan Zunger – Medium
>The textbook success story is the de-Nazification of Germany after WWII. Only a very small fraction of the people who participated in actual killings were ever brought to trial; most people simply went on with their lives, living in the extremely uncomfortable world where you never knew which of the people you dealt with on a daily basis had a horrific past. But despite this, German society not only did not disintegrate, it thrived, rapidly turning into a pillar of the “community of nations.” >There are too many failures for there to be a textbook example.
>Essentially, people need the opportunity to exit the life they were living during the previous violence. If this opportunity is unavailable, they can fall back on what they know.
>The military has been encouraged to develop strong discipline, both to maximize its effectiveness as a fighting force, and to maximize its ability to integrate into society; police departments have been encouraged to develop extreme autonomy among individual officers, especially in their use of violence, in order to maximize people’s obedience.
to_blog? 
june 2018
How Deinterlining Can Improve New York City Transit | Pedestrian Observations
>The reason complex branching reduces capacity is that, as delays propagate, the schedule needs to incorporate a greater margin of error to recover from unexpected incidents. It also slows down the trains, since the trains are frequently held at merge points. The general rule is that anything that increases precision increases capacity (such as automation and moving block signaling) and anything that reduces precision reduces capacity; reverse branching reduces timetable precision, because each train can be delayed by incidents on more than one line, making delays more common.
to_blog? 
june 2018
The Battle for al-Hudaydah Captures Yemen’s Imploding Tragedy – Shooting Irrelevance
>That’s pretty much where we’re at. A hated occupier is being slowly forced out in a humanitarian nightmare by the parties that are absolutely complicit in the broader humanitarian nightmare, led by a former ally of the first group. The only chance to get people to stop killing each other is to convince them they will still be able to kill each other at a moment’s notice if things don’t work out.
to_blog 
june 2018
Hereditary
>I think these folks cannot be receptive to reality until they’re persuaded that reality might somehow, someday allow them to think of themselves as good. That, in turn, requires convincing them to reconceive of goodness as a pursuit rather than as an identity — to start understanding goodness as something they might do instead of something they can possess, to start thinking in terms of better than I was before rather than in terms of better than those people over there.
to_blog 
june 2018
The airline industry is sticking with its old flight simulators
>For now, I use a modified version of the Turing test called the “Oh shit” test. When something out of the ordinary happens in a low-fidelity sim, pilots usually laugh. When it happens in a Level D simulator, pilots invariably yell “Oh shit!
to_blog? 
june 2018
Who could jump higher on a trampoline, LeBron James or Simone Biles?
>The only real way to settle this is clear: let’s get James and Biles together at a trampoline park and have them go at it.
I'd pay hard, cold cash to see this in person!
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june 2018
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