Beaded Tatting: Plan the Picots First
Beads are added to tatting in two basic manners.

1. Beads are threaded onto the shuttle and/or ball threads and brought into postition as the double stitches are formed. (See the three gold beads on one picot in the scan below.)

2. Beads are added to previous segments of tatting usually during joining. (See the red bead over the picot in the scan above.)

If you want to have beads on the rings, the beads must be threaded onto the shuttle thread as the thread is wound onto the shuttle. If working with a particular color sequence or pattern of beads, the beads must be threaded on in the reverse order of working, i.e., the first bead needed is the last bead to be threaded.

Rainbow earring designed and shared by Sharon Briggs. Pattern follows.

If you want to have beads on the chains, the beads must be threaded on the ball thread.

If you want beads on both the rings and the chains, thread the beads needed for the chains first, mark with pin or paperclip, then the beads needed for the rings. Next wind the thread onto the shuttle moving the beads into position.
9 weeks ago
Medieval “Lingerie” From 15th Century Castle Stuns Fashion Historians
Archaeologists have unearthed several 600-year-old bras that experts say could rewrite fashion history. While they’ll hardly send pulses racing by today’s standards, the lace-and-linen underpinnings predate the invention of the modern brassiere by hundreds of years. Found hidden under the floorboards of Lengberg Castle in Austria’s East Tyrol, along with some 2,700 textile remains and one completely preserved pair of (presumably male) linen underpants, the four intact and two fragmented specimens are believed to date to the 15th century, a hypothesis scientists later confirmed through carbon-dating.
fashion  history 
9 weeks ago
100 Easy Ways to Make Women's Lives More Bearable
1. Before explaining something to a woman, ask yourself if she might already understand. She may know more about it than you do.

2. Related: Never, ever try to explain feminism to a woman.

3. Trans women are women. Repeat that until you perish.

10. CLOSE YOUR LEGS ON PUBLIC TRANSIT, OH MY GOD.

27. Watch women's sport. And just call it “sports.”
feminism  WageGap  mansplaining  maleprivilege 
11 weeks ago
How Blockchain Could Disrupt Banking
Blockchain technology provides a cryptographically secure way of sending digital assets, without the need for trusted third parties — such as banks. Further, tools such as smart contracts promise to automate many of the tedious processes within the banking industry, from compliance and claims processing, to distributing the contents of a will.

Global banking is currently a $134 trillion industry. Banks help intermediate payments, make loans, and provide credit. The promise of blockchain as a trustless, disintermediated technology is to disrupt all of that...
capitalism  currency  cryptocurrency  economy 
11 weeks ago
The "Onion" Ring
This is a triple onion ring and chain repeat. Or, you can also accomplish the pattern by doing a double onion ring and tatting a true chain around it. At least four colors could be introduced into this pattern. The extra threads would be encapsulated in the chains.
tatting  needlecraft 
11 weeks ago
ANKARS Style Rose
Much of the foundation tatting for the ANKARS style features overlapping rings. See model by Stephanie Wilson. Stephanie has also experimented with coiling these overlapping rings to create a 3-dimensional rose. Her pattern is shared below.
tatting  needlecraft 
11 weeks ago
Transcript of the Interview with Holly Maniatty, Interpreter for Wu-Tang Clan
I did everything and anything that I could to learn about music and interpreting. I ended up taking some classes at the University of Rochester. At that time, I was already a certified, working interpreter. I really felt like that experience of presenting music to deaf people was really important in my career, so I took a bunch of classes on ASL poetry techniques, and went back and re-studied the linguistics of the language that I was already productively using, and through that kind of basic discovery, I was able to learn poetry techniques and folklore techniques that I am able to incorporate into the interpretation. And that’s kind of where that idea of cadence and body movement came into play more clearly in my interpreting approach.
linguistics  accessibility  deaf  music  poetry  hiphop 
11 weeks ago
What Are ‘Ancient Beringians’? Oldest Full Genetic Profile of a New World Human Ever Found
Specifically, the findings bolster a widely-held theory suggesting American migration began in the Pleistocene era. The theory posits that the Beringia land bridge was at that time exposed due to low sea levels, though by 11,000 years ago, the Last Glacial Maximum would have swallowed the land, preventing further populations from crossing over.

Variances found in “Ancient Beringian” DNA suggest that this unique population was cut off genetically from the larger group, perhaps once the sea swallowed up this bridge.

Archaeologists unearthed the ancient child in central Alaska at a site called Upward Sun River. They named the child, whom they estimate died at around six weeks old, Xach’itee’aanenh T’eede Gaay, which translates to “sunrise girl-child” in Middle Tanana, a local dialect.

Willerslev and his team believe descendants of the girl’s family survived in their new North American home for close to 13,000 years before eventually dying out. Evidence suggests that Upward Sun River once housed a series of temporary settlements that continued to spring up and vanish over thousands of years.
archaeology  anthropology  nativeamericans  DNA  genetics  history 
11 weeks ago
The Largest Ever Analysis of Film Dialogue by Gender
Film Dialogue from 2,000 screenplays, Broken Down by Gender and Age
statistics  hollywood  screenplays  sexism  ageism 
11 weeks ago
Handkerchief Edging Patterns #822-#823, #826-#827, #89
This free pattern originally published in:
Spool Cotton #39, The Book of Tatting
Spool Cotton #111, The Tatting Book
tatting  needlecraft  pattern  lace 
12 weeks ago
Gun Sales in America Have Stopped Spiking After Mass Shootings
Over the past two decades, a predictable cycle emerged in the wake of U.S. mass shootings: gun-control advocates would demand stricter laws, gun-rights supporters warned of an imminent crackdown and gun buyers rushed to lock in purchases before it was too late.

Under President Donald Trump and the Republican-led Congress, however, such urgency seems to have dissipated. Would-be gun buyers hardly budged after last month's Las Vegas shooting that left 58 people dead and hundreds more injured at an outdoor concert venue. There was virtually no uptick in federal background checks for gun sales as one had come to expect.
guns  capitalism  statistics  economy  gunViolence 
february 2018
Underground Reading: Wizard's First Rule by Terry Goodkind
Wizard's First Rule is the inspiring story of Richard Cypher, who, despite being mentally-challenged, manages to eke out a living as a rustic guide in the hills of fantasy Alabama. His evil older brother picks on him a lot, but, despite the teasing and the beatings, Richard knows that he is loved.

In fact, Richard's small world is so filled with special love, that his father's horrific murder comes as shock (less so to the reader, as it occurs on page 2, before we've ever met the character). To recover, he spends his days stumbling about the hills of fantasy Alabama, grieving for a character that is completely unimportant to the reader and described in a purely functional way. On one of these wandering journeys, something new enters Richard's life: breasts.

Kahlan is the first woman to ever appear in fantasy Alabama, so when she shows up in her clingy, white, figure-hugging, completely-impractical cocktail dress and 5-inch spike heels, Richard is overcome with strange new sensations. When he first spots her, Kahlan is under attack by no less than four assassins, but, since they're all walking single file, they trip over Richard's engorged member and fall off a cliff.
lol  fiction  fantasy 
february 2018
If Immigrants Are Pushed Out, Who Will Care for the Elderly?
In Brooklyn, Mary DiGangi, the human resources director at the Menorah Center for Rehabilitation and Nursing Care, recently asked local employment agencies to find 20 to 25 new nursing assistants and practical nurses.

It’s a typical request, and usually, she said, “I’m flooded with applications the next day.” This time, she saw only five applications over a month.

She thinks the Trump administration’s immigration policies and rhetoric have discouraged potential workers. Menorah, part of MJHS Health System, draws heavily on immigrants for its 3,500 employees.
economy  unemployment  immigration  racism  healthcare 
february 2018
Shooting under stress
THREAD
"Shooting under stress is extremely difficult. Even for the most well-trained shooters. A teacher is not going to be able to do this. A lunch lady is not going to be able to do this. Cops & soldiers literally get paid to do this & most of them can't shoot accurately under stress."

This is true. I shot competitively (tried out for the ‘84 Olympics), and spent 16 years in the Army. I was qualified as an Expert in both Rifle and Pistol. In live fire simulators I had a really high hit rate, almost 40 percent. Think about that.
guns  gunViolence  war 
february 2018
Language of Flowers
index of flowers & their floriography
history  botany  folklore  cryptography 
february 2018
Constitutional Myth #6: The Second Amendment Allows Citizens to Threaten Government
As far as scholars can tell, Jefferson never said it. Monticello.org, the official website of the Thomas Jefferson Foundation, says, "We have not found any evidence that Thomas Jefferson said or wrote, 'When governments fear the people, there is liberty. When the people fear the government, there is tyranny,' or any of its listed variations." The quotation (which has also been misattributed to Samuel Adams, Thomas Paine, and The Federalist), actually was apparently said in 1914 by the eminent person-no-one's-ever-heard-of John Basil Barnhill, during a debate in St. Louis.
guns  gunControl  history  usa 
february 2018
George Washington didn't say that a free people need "sufficient arms and ammunition to maintain a status of independence" from their own government.
While George Washington never uttered the phrase in question, the first ten words (“a free people ought not only be armed and disciplined”) are taken from the former president’s annual address to the Senate and House of Representatives on 8 January 1790:

"Among the many interesting objects, which will engage your attention, that of providing for the common defence will merit particular regard. To be prepared for war is one of the most effectual means of preserving peace.

"A free people ought not only to be armed but disciplined; to which end a Uniform and well digested plan is requisite: And their safety and interest require that they should promote such manufactories, as tend to render them independent on others, for essential, particularly for military supplies.

"The proper establishment of the Troops which may be deemed indispensible, will be entitled to mature consideration. In the arrangements which may be made respecting it, it will be of importance to conciliate the comfortable support of the Officers and Soldiers with a due regard to economy."
history  guns  war  MilitaryIndustrialComplex 
february 2018
Ursula K. Le Guin, Bryn Mawr Commencement Address, 1986
Thinking about what I should say to you made me think about what we learn in college; and what we unlearn in college; and then how we learn to unlearn what we learned in college and relearn what we unlearned in college, and so on. And I thought how I have learned, more or less well, three languages, all of them English; and how one of these languages is the one I went to college to learn. I thought I was going to study French and Italian, and I did, but what I learned was the language of power - of social power; I shall call it the father tongue.
patriarchy  maleprivilege  linguistics  sexism 
february 2018
Thread on African tribes/cultures featured in #BlackPanther. #Wakanda
Mursi, Surma, Maasai, Zulu, Igbo, Basotho, Sasotho, Ndebele, Himba, Agbada, Dogon, Tuareg, Turkana

Xhosa
africa  costume  anthropology  cinema 
february 2018
Do Republicans want to ban abortion after 20 weeks with no exceptions?
Currently, 25 states ban abortion on a spectrum from 20 to 24 weeks of pregnancy, and Virginia bans third-trimester abortions, according to the Guttmacher Institute. But under federal law, the United States is one of only seven countries that allow elective abortions after 20 weeks, in large part because of a set of landmark decisions by the U.S. Supreme Court beginning with Roe v. Wade in 1973.

The Supreme Court requires that laws banning abortion include exceptions to protect a woman’s health and life. Opponents of the bill in Congress say it does not include a health exception, and that much is accurate; there is only a life exception. But some of the statements opposing the bill give the impression that there are no exceptions at all, health or life.
abortion  GOP  reproductiveRights 
february 2018
The Stock Market Crash of 1929
During the 1920's more middle-class and lay citizens began investing in the stock market. Buying on margin became very popular. Margins were generally around 50% at the time--that is, a lay investor could give his broker only 50% of the value of the stocks he wanted to purchase and the broker would put up the rest of the money. The investor would then pay interest on the loan that the broker gave him--the 50% value of the stocks. If the stocks increased in value then the investor got to keep all of the profit. When he sold he would pay off his debt to the broker. If the value of the stocks were to decrease below 50% (or some set level) of the price that they were bought at, there would be a "broker's call" where the investor would have to give more money to the broker or sell the stock and pay off his debt. When someone buys on margin, the stock itself is acting as collateral. If the value of the stock decreases below the margin, then even after selling the stock the investor would still owe the broker money.

Buying on margin probably helped to fuel some of the stock market prosperity during the 1920's. At the time buying on margin wasn't regulated so the brokers could choose the margins they were willing to give. In fact, by the end of October 1929, the average margin had decreased by about 25%--worsening the situation. Buying on margin allows investors to buy more than they otherwise could have. For example, if Henry thought that stock ABC was a good buy and he had $1000 to spend, if he bought on a 50% margin then he could buy $2000 worth of ABC stock instead of just $1000. This has a tendency to push the market up. Imagine one million "Henry's" being able to double the amount of money they were willing to invest in the stock market.
history  economy  usa  wealthinequality  capitalism 
february 2018
The Alt-Right is Killing People
The Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) counted over 100 people killed or injured by alleged perpetrators influenced by the so-called "alt-right" — a movement that continues to access the mainstream and reach young recruits.
terrorism  usa  whiteSupremacy  racism  statistics  misogyny  nazis 
february 2018
African Scribes: Manuscript Culture of Ethiopia
February 6th marks the opening of a new display, “African Scribes: Manuscript Culture of Ethiopia,” in the British Library’s Sir John Ritblat Treasures Gallery. It will be the first exhibit to be held at the Library devoted entirely to Ethiopian manuscripts, exploring the culture of a manuscript tradition which extends back to the early centuries of the Christian era.
art  africa  history  christianity 
february 2018
Hunting for the ancient lost farms of North America
special today on erect knotweed porridge —
2,000 years ago, people domesticated these plants. Now they’re wild weeds. What happened?

Over 2,000 years ago in North America, indigenous people domesticated plants that are now part of our everyday diets, such as squashes and sunflowers. But they also bred crops that have since returned to the wild. These include erect knotweed (not to be confused with its invasive cousin, Asian knotweed), goosefoot, little barley, marsh elder, and maygrass. We haven’t simply lost a few plant strains: an entire cuisine with its own kinds of flavors and baked goods has simply disappeared.

agriculture
botany  archaeology  anthropology  history  nativeamericans  food 
february 2018
Comparing Black People to Monkeys has a Long, Dark Simian History
In the history of European cultures, the comparison of humans to apes and monkeys was disparaging from its very beginning.

When Plato - by quoting Heraclitus - declared apes ugly in relation to humans and men apish in relation to gods, this was cold comfort for the apes. It transcendentally disconnected them from their human co-primates. The Fathers of the Church went one step further: Saint Gregory of Nazianzus and Saint Isidore of Seville compared pagans to monkeys.
racism  whiteprivilege  whiteSupremacy  history 
february 2018
Twenty-Three Years and Still Waiting for Change: Why It’s Time to Give Tipped Workers the Regular Minimum Wage
By Sylvia Allegretto and David Cooper • July 10, 2014

Today, this two-tiered wage system continues to exist, yet the subsidy to employers provided by customers in restaurants, salons, casinos, and other businesses that employ tipped workers is larger than it has ever been. At the federal level, it currently stands at $5.12 per hour, as employers are required to pay their tipped staff a “tipped minimum wage” of only $2.13 per hour, and the federal regular minimum wage is currently $7.25.2 Remarkably, the federal tipped minimum wage has been stuck at $2.13 since 1991—a 23-year stretch, over which time inflation has lowered the purchasing power of the federal tipped minimum wage to its lowest point ever.
minimumwage  wealthinequality  capitalism 
january 2018
Twitter, It’s Time to End Your Anything-Goes Paradise
It’s time for Twitter to scrap one of its founding principles: the idea that it is an anything-goes paradise, where anyone who signs up for a voice on its platform is immediately and automatically given equal footing with everyone else, and where even the vilest, most hateful and antisocial behavior should be tolerated.

The company is currently remaking its unworkable verification system — the blue check mark it awards to some high-profile accounts, an icon whose precise meaning is unclear, but that confers many privileges. Last week, Twitter removed the icon from several accounts belonging to white supremacists. Now it says it is rethinking the whole system, and looking for ways to better police its network.
twitter  racism  sexism  whiteSupremacy 
january 2018
The Women’s March was ‘made unsafe’ by anti-trans signs and pussy hats
The anti-trans sentiment on one particular sign at the Vancouver Women’s March was made worse by the prevalence of pussy hats, which many believe to be exclusionary.

The hats are said to limit the idea of a woman to those who have vaginas.
transphobia  whiteprivilege 
january 2018
An ER visit, a $12,000 bill — and a health insurer that wouldn’t pay
The doctors in the emergency room did multiple tests including a CT scan and ultrasound. They determined that Cloyd had ovarian cysts, not appendicitis. They gave her pain medications that helped her feel better, and an order to follow up with a gynecologist.

A few weeks later, Cloyd received something else: a $12,596 hospital bill her insurance denied — leaving her on the hook for all of it.
healthcare  capitalism  sexism 
january 2018
The female price of male pleasure
The studies on this are few. A casual survey of forums where people discuss "bad sex" suggests that men tend to use the term to describe a passive partner or a boring experience. [...] But when most women talk about "bad sex," they tend to mean coercion, or emotional discomfort or, even more commonly, physical pain. Debby Herbenick, a professor at the Indiana University School of Public Health, and one of the forces behind the National Survey of Sexual Health and Behavior, confirmed this. "When it comes to 'good sex,'" she told me, "women often mean without pain, men often mean they had orgasms."
sex  rapeCulture  consent  misogyny  maleprivilege 
january 2018
Judging books by their covers: Five publishing design cliches
1. Bestselling airport novel
2. Heavyweight literary fiction
3. Fantasy epic
4. Female-orientated fiction
5. Gripping psychological thriller
lol  publishing  graphics  fiction 
january 2018
One year after the Women’s March on Washington, people are still protesting en masse. A lot. We’ve counted.
About 74 percent of those protests were either against Trump administration policy or on issues that conflicted with the president’s viewpoint, such as protests against specific police shootings of black people. We assuredly did not learn about every protest. Given the information we had, however, we made a low and a high estimate of all the participants in all the protests we counted, giving us a range of between 5.9 million and 9 million. That’s roughly 1.8 to 2.8% of the population of the United States, with about 5.2 million to 8 million of those turning out to oppose Trump’s policies or points of view.
politics  freespeech 
january 2018
The tools that convinced a federal court to strike down North Carolina’s gerrymander
ASYMMETRY * CONSISTENT ADVANTAGE * EFFICIENCY GAP * DURABILITY * GEOGRAPHY

“Asymmetry” refers to situations in which identical performances by the two parties lead to very different results. Say, when one party gets 52 percent of the statewide vote in legislative elections, it wins a significant majority of the seats, but when the other party wins 52 percent of the vote, it wins only a minority of seats. However, the Supreme Court has explicitly, and correctly, concluded that a one-off outcome like the 52 percent example cannot be used to prove a gerrymander, because such an outcome could occur by chance.

Student’s test is the basis for a very simple measure of asymmetry, the “lopsided-wins test,” which checks if Democratic representatives won, on average, with much larger margins than Republican representatives. If the difference is large enough, and there is enough data — these statistical tests are always stronger the more data points there are — then their average is highly unlikely to have arisen from neutral principles.

In North Carolina in 2016, the three Democratic winners took an average of 68.5 percent of the vote, while the 10 Republican winners took an average of only 60.3 percent of the vote. According to the lopsided wins test, such a pattern would have only occurred by chance in one of 300 cases. Importantly, it doesn’t matter that Democrats won three seats; if they’d won four or five seats with similar averages, the lopsided wins still suggest that Democrats were denied an equal opportunity to elect representatives of their choice — but without suggesting a quota of seats.

An even older way to measure unequal opportunity is a test for “consistent advantage,” originally developed by Gosset’s mathematical mentor Karl Pearson in 1895. To carry out this test, compare the average statewide vote captured by each party with that of the median district — the district that falls in the middle when they are ranked by one party’s vote share.

When both parties are treated similarly, this difference is close to zero. If the “average-median difference” is large — with the median district tilted strongly toward one party — it means that one party gained a consistent advantage at the district level. Call it the Lake Wobegon test: The redistricting party has ensured that a majority of its districts perform above the statewide average.

The efficiency gap measures the portion of votes each party has “wasted.” For example, in a district where party A defeats party B by a 60-40 margin, party A wasted 10 percent of the votes cast, since they were in excess of the bare 50 percent plus one vote needed to win. All of party B’s 40 percent were wasted.

This definition seems abstruse, but there is a much simpler way to think about it. The efficiency gap is zero when one party wins 50 percent of the statewide vote and 50 percent of the seats — but it is also zero for other election outcomes. For example, it is zero when 75 percent of the statewide vote elects 100 percent of the seats. This graph shows all the outcomes that are associated with an efficiency gap of zero.

Judges are also interested in durability: whether a gerrymander is likely to last under a variety of political conditions.

geography, not gerrymandering.

To sort out the question, the court relied on expert witnesses who drew thousands of alternative maps and concluded that North Carolina’s geography carries no such inherent bias. There were many ways to draw maps following all the redistricting rules that did not lead to unfairness, they showed.
gerrymandering  map  politics  GOP  votingRights  voterSuppression 
january 2018
Why Raspberry Pi isn’t vulnerable to Spectre or Meltdown
To help us understand why, here’s a little primer on some concepts in modern processor design. We’ll illustrate these concepts using simple programs in Python syntax like this one:

t = a+b
u = c+d
v = e+f
w = v+g
x = h+i
y = j+k
infosec  security  vuln 
january 2018
Justice Department Secures First Denaturalization As a Result of Operation Janus
A Department of Homeland Security initiative, Operation Janus, identified about 315,000 cases where some fingerprint data was missing from the centralized digital fingerprint repository.
immigration  racism 
january 2018
Why Do Cats Purr? Cat Purrs Don’t Always Mean Your Kitty is Happy
1. Why do cats purr? Newborn kittens and their moms purr to stay safe
2. Cats purr when they want attention
3. Cats purr when they are stressed, in pain or sick because cat purrs have healing powers
4. Cats purr for some low-key exercise
cats  feline  biology  psychology 
january 2018
A Kiss Is Just a Kiss
Title: A Kiss Is Just a Kiss
Original/Fandom: Stargate SG-1
Character(s): Vala Mal Doran, Daniel Jackson
Pairings: Daniel/Vala
Summary: Vala is hurt when Daniel won't kiss her beneath the mistletoe...especially when she sees him kiss someone else.

http://archiveofourown.org/works/13072665
https://www.fanfiction.net/s/12765516/1/A-Kiss-Is-Just-a-Kiss

danielvala fanfic stargate stargatesg-1 danieljackson ValaMalDoran
danielvala  fanfic  stargate  stargatesg-1  danieljackson  ValaMalDoran 
january 2018
Storify End-of-Life
Existing Storify customers can continue to use all capabilities of the service until May 16, 2018, except for the ability to create new stories which will end on May 1, 2018. Be sure to export any content you would like to keep by May 16, 2018, using the export functionality in Storify.
How do I export content from Storify?

Exporting content from Storify can be done in a few simple steps:

Log in to Storify at www.storify.com.
Mouse over the story that contains content you would like to export and select "View."
Click on the ellipses icon and select "Export."
Choose your preferred format for download.
To save your content and linked assets in HTML, select - File > Save as > Web Page, Complete.
Repeat the process for each story whose content you would like to preserve.
storify 
january 2018
Nobel Prize-winning economist Angus Deaton thinks we're asking all the wrong questions about inequality — Quartz
Deaton believes the biggest misconception about inequality is that it causes certain economic, political, and social processes. But that’s backward. Economic inequality is a symptom of processes—some good, some bad—that drive the global economy. It’s the residue of a post-industrialized age.
Two types of inequality

What we should actually investigate is which types of inequality are fair, and which are not. “Inequality is not the same thing as unfairness; and, to my mind, it is the latter that has incited so much political turmoil in the rich world today,” says Deaton.
economy  socialJustice  wealthinequality 
january 2018
The Romans 13 Fallacy: an eye-Opening Discovery
Americans who tote the “Caesar” line are woefully ignorant of world history. During the time of Christ, the Romans viewed Caesar as a GOD. There were NO ELECTIONS for Caesar. Modern Christians fail to remember that the reason why the ancient Christians were persecuted by the Romans was because they refused to worship the Roman pagan gods AND CAESAR.
scripture  bible  christianity  history 
january 2018
Crispr Isn’t Enough Any More. Get Ready for Gene Editing 2.0
Crispr’s targeted cutting action is its defining feature. But when Cas9 slices through the two strands of an organism’s DNA, the gene-editor introduces an element of risk. Cells can make mistakes when they repair such a drastic genetic injury. Which is why scientists have been designing ways to achieve the same effects in safer ways.
DNA  genetics 
january 2018
8 ways shows like “Law & Order: SVU” mess with your head
1. The rate of violent crimes
2. Clearance rates
3. The race of officers and criminals
4. Plea Deals
5. Confessions
6. Violation of Civil Rights
7. Forensics Aren’t Foolproof and Forensic Technicians Are Not Police
8. That Law & Order Voiceover
tv  rape  crime  judicialSystem 
january 2018
Law & Order: SVU vs. Reality: Offensively Different
Law & Order: SVU has built an empire on making rape a spectator sport.

The show doesn’t meaningfully or consistently tackle the pervasive issue of rape. It uses the issue of rape for its own profit.

With the invasive nature of rape kit tests and the way the bodies of survivors of sexual assault are made to be third-player defendants under the rhetoric that someone’s body can “invite” or “justify” rape, many survivors feel that their bodies are crime scenes.

So for us to unabashedly consume crime investigation shows like Law & Order: SVU, what we’re contributing to is a broader culture of the commodification and consumption of (mostly female-identified) bodies in the form of crime scenes.
rape  rapeCulture  tv  capitalism 
january 2018
Hurricane Damage To Manufacturers In Puerto Rico Affects Mainland Hospitals, Too
"The plain bags, the mixed bags. There are shortages of all kinds of small-volume medications," Levin says.

The shortage is a direct result of hurricane damage in Puerto Rico. It has been eight weeks since Hurricane Maria hit the island, knocking out electricity and wreaking havoc on many roads, homes and other buildings.

The storm damaged many of the island's more than 100 drug and medical device manufacturers. Puerto Rico produces about $40 billion worth of pharmaceuticals for the U.S. market, according to the Food and Drug Administration — more than any other state or territory.
PuertoRico  infrastructure  capitalism  medicine 
december 2017
Statement by FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb, M.D., on efforts to address impact of IV fluid shortages following hurricane destruction and resolve manufacturing shortfalls
It’s been nine weeks since Hurricane Maria made landfall on Puerto Rico and the island continues to struggle to recover from the devastation brought by this storm, as well as Hurricane Irma.

As I’ve commented on previously, the medical products industry has a significant presence in Puerto Rico, and the disruption to this industry has had ramifications for patients both on the island and throughout the U.S. The FDA has been working closely with federal and Puerto Rican authorities to help stabilize the medical products manufacturing sector. We’re taking steps to mitigate or avert product shortages but we’ve still seen shortages of certain medically important products, some of which are sourced primarily or only in Puerto Rico.

Most significantly to date, hospitals across the country are reporting shortages of IV fluids, particularly sodium chloride 0.9% injection bags – a type of saline bag. Saline IV fluids, which are used to inject drugs intravenously in hospital and outpatient settings, have been intermittently in shortage dating back to 2014. However, despite our best efforts, the situation in Puerto Rico has greatly exacerbated this supply issue. The FDA understands the concerns and impact of the ongoing shortages of IV solutions. These products have been on the list of approximately 90 medical products (which includes biologics, devices and drugs) that the FDA has been monitoring since the storm hit, and the FDA is actively working to address the shortage. Among the steps the FDA is taking, in conjunction with manufacturers of these products:
PuertoRico  medicine  capitalism  infrastructure 
december 2017
20 Things Guilty People Do That Trump Does Daily
(THREAD) 20 Things Guilty People Do That Trump Does Daily

As a former criminal defense attorney, I've sat in rooms candidly discussing crime with thousands of criminals. I know what "consciousness of guilt" looks like. Trump exhibits it daily.

I hope you'll read and share this.
psychology  crime 
december 2017
#GOPTaxScam
#GOPTaxScam Reagan cuts taxes, explodes deficits. Clinton leaves surplus, Bush cuts taxes and reverses surplus by $2.2T, economic collapse Obama saves economy, reduces deficit by 2/3 (fastest reduction in history). Trump cuts taxes, adding $1.5T to deficit Rinse, repeat.
video  taxLaw  capitalism  GOP  Democrats  economy 
december 2017
The surprising thing Google learned about its employees — and what it means for today’s students
In 2013, Google decided to test its hiring hypothesis by crunching every bit and byte of hiring, firing, and promotion data accumulated since the company’s incorporation in 1998. Project Oxygen shocked everyone by concluding that, among the eight most important qualities of Google’s top employees, STEM expertise comes in dead last. The seven top characteristics of success at Google are all soft skills:
being a good coach;
communicating and listening well;
possessing insights into others (including others different values and points of view);
having empathy toward and being supportive of one’s colleagues;
being a good critical thinker and problem solver; and
being able to make connections across complex ideas.
education  sociology  psychology 
december 2017
These experts figured out why so many bogus patents get approved
1 The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) is funded by fees—and the agency gets more fees if it approves an application.

2 Unlimited opportunities to refile rejected applications means sometimes granting a patent is the only way to get rid of a persistent applicant.

3 Patent examiners are given less time to review patent applications as they gain seniority, leading to less thorough reviews.
software  capitalism 
december 2017
The past year of research has made it very clear: Trump won because of racial resentment
Even when controlling for partisanship, ideology, region and a host of other factors, white millennials fit Michael Tesler’s analysis, explored here. As he put it, economic anxiety isn’t driving racial resentment; rather, racial resentment is driving economic anxiety. We found, as he has in a larger population, that racial resentment is the biggest predictor of white vulnerability among white millennials. Economic variables like education, income and employment made a negligible difference.
racism  elections  usa 
december 2017
‘I hope I can quit working in a few years’: A preview of the U.S. without pensions
Even as late as the early 1990s, about 60 percent of full-time workers at medium and large companies had pension coverage, according to the government figures. But today, only about 24 percent of workers at midsize and large companies have pension coverage, according to the data, and that number is expected to continue to fall as older workers exit the workforce.

In place of pensions, companies and investment advisers urge employees to open retirement accounts. The basic idea is workers will manage their own retirement funds, sometimes with a little help from their employers, sometimes not. Once they reach retirement age, those accounts are supposed to supplement whatever Social Security might pay. (Today, Social Security provides only enough for a bare-bones budget, about $14,000 a year on average.)

The trouble with expecting workers to save on their own is that almost half of U.S. families have no such retirement account, according the Federal Reserve’s 2016 Survey of Consumer ­Finances.

Of those who do have retirement accounts, moreover, their savings are far too scant to support a typical retirement. The median account, among workers at the median income level, is about $25,000.
economy  workersrights  wealthinequality 
december 2017
Farmers move to defy Trump on NAFTA
In numerous meetings between Ross and industry groups starting last spring, he said he believed the United States held all the leverage based on the volume of food and agriculture products it sold to Mexico. He argued that if the United States wanted to press Mexico into making concessions on issues such as auto-part imports, Mexico would agree rather than risk losing inexpensive access to U.S. farm products, according to people briefed on those meetings.

“All the ag groups looked at him and their mouths dropped open and said, ‘Don’t you get it? The leverage is in their hands. We are completely dependent on them as this major export market,’” said one person who received the briefing.

“If you try to twist Mexico’s arm to give in on rules of origin [on autos], they’ll just stop buying,” the person added. “That’s just an inconvenience to them because there are so many other places they can go. Sure, consumers might pay a little more, but it’s not as if they can’t get it.”
agribusiness  economy  mexico  politics 
december 2017
Give Thanks for the Winter Solstice. You Might Not Be Here Without It.
The axial tilt of Venus, for example, is so extreme — 177 degrees — that the planet is essentially flipped upside down with its South Pole pointing up. Perhaps counter-intuitively, that means that there’s very little tilt to its upside-down spin and its hemispheres will never dramatically point toward or away from the sun. As such, the sun’s dance across the sky will remain relatively stable — shifting by a mere six degrees over the course of a Venusian year.

Had we evolved on Venus, it’s likely that we would not have noticed solstices or seasons at all, said David Grinspoon, an astrobiologist at the Planetary Science Institute.

The same can’t be said for imaginary aliens living within Uranus’s chilly blue clouds.

“Uranus is wild,” Dr. Grinspoon said.

An axial tilt of 98 degrees causes the ice giant to spin on its side. So, whereas one of Earth’s poles leans slightly toward the sun at solstice, one of Uranus’s poles points almost directly toward the sun at solstice — as though poised to make a perfect bullseye. That means that one hemisphere will bask under the sun both day and night, while the other will experience a frigid and dark winter and not catch a glimpse of the sun for that entire season.
astronomy  astrophysics  evolution 
december 2017
Millennials Are Screwed
We’ve all heard the statistics. More millennials live with their parents than with roommates. We are delaying partner-marrying and house-buying and kid-having for longer than any previous generation. And, according to The Olds, our problems are all our fault: We got the wrong degree. We spend money we don’t have on things we don’t need. We still haven’t learned to code. We killed cereal and department stores and golf and napkins and lunch. Mention “millennial” to anyone over 40 and the word “entitlement” will come back at you within seconds, our own intergenerational game of Marco Polo.

This is what it feels like to be young now. Not only are we screwed, but we have to listen to lectures about our laziness and our participation trophies from the people who screwed us.
wealthinequality  economy  studentDebt 
december 2017
Researchers Fooled a Google AI Into Thinking a Rifle Was a Helicopter
But algorithms, unlike humans, are susceptible to a specific type of problem called an “adversarial example.” These are specially designed optical illusions that fool computers into doing things like mistake a picture of a panda for one of a gibbon. They can be images, sounds, or paragraphs of text. Think of them as hallucinations for algorithms.

MIT’s latest work demonstrates that attackers could potentially create adversarial examples that can trip up commercial AI systems. Google is generally considered to have one of the best security teams in the world, but one of its most futuristic products is subject to hallucinations. These kinds of attacks could one day be used to, say, dupe a luggage-scanning algorithm into thinking an explosive is a teddy bear, or a facial-recognition system into thinking the wrong person committed a crime.
artificialIntelligence  steganography  security  surveillance  OCR 
december 2017
The True Story of the ‘Free State of Jones’
A new Hollywood movie looks at the tale of the Mississippi farmer who led a revolt against the Confederacy

In March 1864, Lt. Gen. Leonidas Polk informed Jefferson Davis, the president of the Confederacy, that Jones County was in “open rebellion” and that guerrilla fighters were “proclaiming themselves ‘Southern Yankees.’” They had crippled the tax collection system, seized and redistributed Confederate supplies, and killed and driven out Confederate officials and loyalists, not just in Jones County but all over southeast Mississippi. Confederate Capt. Wirt Thompson reported that they were now a thousand strong and flying the U.S. flag over the Jones County courthouse—“they boast of fighting for the Union,” he added.
history  usa  slavery  mississippi  racism 
december 2017
Trump wants to slash America’s corporate tax rate, but that rate is a myth
The Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy examined 258 Fortune 500 companies that were profitable from 2008 to 2015 and found 100 companies paid zero — or less — in federal income taxes for at least one year. Some companies like PG&E (Pacific Gas and Electric Company) didn’t pay taxes at all. Plus, many received some form of a tax rebate from the U.S. Treasury, often totaling hundreds of millions of dollars.
taxLaw  taxEvasion  capitalism  wealthinequality  statistics 
december 2017
Why Corporations Pay Less Taxes than You
Corporations are living the island life -- or at least their shadowy shell companies are -- and saving a bundle on taxes as a result.

It might surprise you to hear that a single building in the Cayman Islands serves as the address for nearly 19,000 businesses. At least that’s according to a report issued by advocacy groups U.S. Public Interest Research Group and Citizens for Tax Justice.

Using offshore tax havens appears to be the No. 1 way corporations avoid paying U.S. income tax. They (legally) set up subsidiaries in foreign countries – usually ones that charge no or low taxes – and then credit profits to those shell companies.

When Congress cut off tax benefits for profits made by businesses in Puerto Rico, companies simply transferred those profits to the Cayman Islands instead. Other firms have taken to acquiring foreign companies and then moving their headquarters to the foreign site in an increasingly popular tactic known as tax inversion.

President Barack Obama has called for an end to tax inversion and legislation is being drafted, but it remains to be seen whether it will pass and whether it would have the desired effect. It may simply send businesses back to the books to find other creative ways to lower their tax burden.

Another way is accelerated depreciation. Under IRS rules, in some cases businesses can accelerate the depreciation of equipment and similar assets. Using this method, companies may be able to double their tax deduction in the first year after some new purchases. Businesses with corporate jets also benefit from a loophole that allows them to depreciate their planes on a five-year schedule compared with the seven-year schedule followed by airlines.

Then there’s the “excess stock option” tax break, which Citizens for Tax Justice said saved 280 Fortune 500 companies a total of $27 billion in federal and state income taxes in a recent three-year period. The group said Facebook used that tax break “to avoid paying even a dime of federal and state income taxes in 2012.”

Finally, while not a corporate loophole per se, business executives get their own special perks. For example, hedge fund managers can claim their income as capital gains, which means they pay only 20 percent rather than the up to 39.6 percent marginal tax rate they may otherwise be on the hook for.
taxLaw  taxEvasion  capitalism  wealthinequality 
december 2017
The 35 Percent Corporate Tax Myth
Some Key Findings:

As a group, the 258 corporations paid an effective federal income tax rate of 21.2% over the 8-year period, slightly over half the statutory 35% tax rate.

Eighteen of the corporations, including General Electric, International Paper, Priceline.com and PG&E, paid no federal income tax at all over the 8-year period. A fifth of the corporations (48) paid an effective tax rate of less than 10% over that period.

Of those corporations in our sample with significant offshore profits, more than half paid higher corporate tax rates to foreign governments where they operate than they paid in the United States on their U.S. profits.
taxLaw  capitalism  wealthinequality 
december 2017
Did Alabama Just Violate Federal Voting Law?
Assessing the state’s “inactive” voter scheme.
By Mark Joseph Stern

Voters who cast ballots in every election should not be told that they have abruptly become inactive; the right to vote should not depend upon one’s ability to recall her county of birth; citizens should not fear arrest on their way to cast lawful ballots. But Alabama’s muddled, mystifying system seems designed to trip up voters at every possible turn; it is a testament to the tenacity of Jones’ supporters that they were able to elect him in spite of state-sanctioned chicanery. Alabama’s electorate already has plenty of initiative. What it needs now is a secretary of state who conducts truly free and fair elections.
alabama  voterSuppression  voterID  votingRights  voterRegistration  elections  GOP 
december 2017
Black Women Kept Roy Moore Out of Office. Here’s How to Actually Thank Them.
Donate to CollectivePAC
Support Higher Heights
Support Black Women Candidates
Give to Woke Vote
Donate Petitions to Restore Florida Voting Rights
Color of Change PAC
votingRights  blacklivesmatter 
december 2017
If yesterday's election in Alabama had been for members of Congress
If yesterday's election in Alabama had been for members of Congress, Democrats would have won only 1 seat, and Republicans 6. How is that possible? Watch: http://on.msnbc.com/2C3RyqW
video  alabama  gerrymandering  racism  voterSuppression  elections  GOP 
december 2017
Hydropower is NOT Clean Energy: Dams and Reservoirs are Major Drivers of Climate Change
First, the building of massive dams and reservoirs results in flooding vast areas of land all at once that contain large amounts of organic life. In the oxygen-poor environment that results, methane-generating microbes feed on decaying algae. Second, rivers continue to flow into reservoirs delivering not only significant amounts of organic matter and sediment from upstream, but also nutrients like nitrogen and phosphorus from agricultural activities, fertilizers, and human waste, driving algae growth and providing even more material for microbes to break down and convert to methane. And third, reservoirs experience greater fluctuation in water levels than natural lakes. Drops in water levels increase the amount of methane bubbling released into the atmosphere. The result? As described by publication Science Alert: “…if we’ve deliberately flooded areas of land to generate energy, irrigate our crops, or perform flood control, we’re contributing to the accelerated warming of the planet.”
globalwarming  environment  waterQuality  energy 
december 2017
So @bgonemydear just told me a black pastor in AL was helping voters w/o IDs
So @bgonemydear just told me a black pastor in AL was helping voters w/o IDs print out their mug shots as ID verification THAT IS SO FUCKING SMART USE THE PRISON INDUSTRIAL COMPLEX AGAINST THOSE MOTHERFUCKERS
preschoolToPrisonPipeline  voterID  votingRights  alabama 
december 2017
What did Alabama’s top election official learn from monitoring Russian election?
by David Kumbroch, Updated at 10:20AM, September 30, 2016

"They gave us these sheets," he says, holding up pieces of paper with a small red box at the bottom, "But we didn't have to fax them in. What we did, we had a pen. An electronic pen. We were able to touch this box . . . it would automatically send the information that was recorded to the central reporting location and they could document it live throughout the day."

He says Alabama doesn't have any structure for the way election monitors submit notes, "What you have now, when you have people that go and observe elections, they might write a note on a sticky note or they might write a note in a notebook, but they're not doing anything that would be systematic or in sequential order about what they observed."

Merrill is back home now, preparing for the general election. He doesn't expect to get changes in place that quick, but he says he does eventually hope to implement lessons learned from his trip to Russia.
elections  Russia  alabama  treason  voterSuppression 
december 2017
Is Bitcoin Destroying Tibet’s Rivers?
Mining Bitcoin needs vast amounts of electricity to run millions of computers which solve complex mathematical problems to create new Bitcoin. Those computer banks use vast amounts of electricity, and the cheaper the electricity, the greater the profit margin for the miner-hackers. What turns out to be the cheapest electricity on the planet right now?

Tibet’s hydropower.

Like hard-rock mining in the past, the environmental impacts of Bitcoin mining are being completely disregarded and externalized. Rivers are being drained and destroyed for hydropower and the greenhouse gas emissions of producing the electricity — by hydropower and fossil fuels all over the planet — are being completely ignored. A Nov. 1, 2017, article posted on the website, “Motherboard,” estimated that Bitcoin mining around the world now consumes as much electricity as the country of Nigeria in one year.
cryptocurrency  sustainability  environment  pollution  globalwarming 
december 2017
Exclusive: Roy Moore's campaign accidentally emailed us their talking points attacking his accusers
he document (posted below) was sent out by Moore’s deputy campaign manager Hannah Ford. It contains talking points on how to debunk four women’s allegations against him, as well as allegations that he was once banned from a local Alabama mall for his interactions with teenage girls.

The campaign has been working for weeks to discredit or diminish the allegations brought forth from reporting by the Washington Post, AL.com, and other national news outlets. Speaking to CNN, Janet Porter, a Moore spokesperson, said Thursday that the media has been acting as a “lynch mob” to discredit Moore.
propaganda  elections  alabama  GOP  childmolestation 
december 2017
How Facebook Figures Out Everyone You've Ever Met
Behind the Facebook profile you’ve built for yourself is another one, a shadow profile, built from the inboxes and smartphones of other Facebook users. Contact information you’ve never given the network gets associated with your account, making it easier for Facebook to more completely map your social connections.
privacy  infosec  facebook  socialmedia  surveillance 
december 2017
Alien Probe or Galactic Driftwood? SETI Tunes In to 'Oumuamua
Ever since its discovery in mid-October as it passed by Earth already outbound from our solar system, the mysterious object dubbed ‘Oumuamua (Hawaiian for “first messenger”) has left scientists utterly perplexed. Zooming down almost perpendicularly inside Mercury’s orbit at tens of thousands of kilometers per hour—too fast for our star’s gravity to catch—‘Oumuamua appeared to have been dropped in on our solar system from some great interstellar height, picking up even more speed on a slingshot-like loop around the sun before soaring away for parts unknown. It is now already halfway to Jupiter, too far for a rendezvous mission and rapidly fading from the view of Earth’s most powerful telescopes.

Astronomers scrambling to glimpse the fading object have revealed additional oddities. ‘Oumuamua was never seen to sprout a comet-like tail after getting close to the sun, hinting it is not a relatively fresh bit of icy flotsam from the outskirts of a nearby star system. This plus its deep red coloration—which mirrors that of some cosmic-ray-bombarded objects in our solar system—suggested that ‘Oumuamua could be an asteroid from another star. Yet those same observations also indicate ‘Oumuamua might be shaped rather like a needle, up to 800 meters long and only 80 wide, spinning every seven hours and 20 minutes. That would mean it is like no asteroid ever seen before, instead resembling the collision-minimizing form favored in many designs for notional interstellar probes. What’s more, it is twirling at a rate that could tear a loosely-bound rubble pile apart. Whatever ‘Oumuamua is, it appears to be quite solid—likely composed of rock, or even metal—seemingly tailor-made to weather long journeys between stars. So far there are few if any wholly satisfactory explanations as to how such an extremely elongated solid object could naturally form, let alone endure the forces of a natural high-speed ejection from a star system—a process thought to involve a wrenching encounter with a giant planet.
astronomy  nearearthobjects 
december 2017
The complicated, inadequate language of sexual violence
It’s not that we don’t have a vocabulary for talking about sexual violence, because we do. But that vocabulary is inadequate. It is confusing and flattening in ways that make it hard to talk about sexual violence without either trivializing it, obfuscating the systems that enable it, or getting so specific as to become salacious or triggering. So whenever I talk about sexual violence, I feel like I’m translating: taking the acts that actually happened and trying to cram them into the language that I have available to describe them.

That inadequacy is not a harmless coincidence. Language reflects culture, and our language reflects a culture that does not want to make it easy to talk about sexual violence — that wants to make it difficult, uncomfortable, and confusing.

The vocabulary we have for sexual assault tends to be either clinical but vague or graphic but specific
linguistics  violence  violenceagainstwomen  rape  rapeCulture 
december 2017
Deep beneath the Earth’s surface life is weird and wonderful
Gaetan Borgonie & Maggie Lau
19-24 minutes

The amount of water in the subsurface is considerable. Globally, the freshwater reservoir in the subsurface is estimated to be up to 100 times as great as all the available fresh water in the rivers, lakes and swamps combined. This water, ranging in ages from seven years to 2 billion years, is being intensely studied by researchers because it defines the location and scope of deep life. We know now that the deep terrestrial subsurface is home to one quintillion simple (prokaryotic) cells. That is two to 20 times as many cells as live in all the open ocean. By some estimates, the deep biosphere could contain up to one third of Earth’s entire biomass.
microbiology  waterSupply  biology 
december 2017
Alabama Demands Voter ID–Then Closes Driver’s License Offices In Black Counties
By Tierney Sneed Published October 1, 2015 12:15 pm

“Every single county in which blacks make up more than 75 percent of registered voters will see their driver license office closed. Every one,” Archibald wrote.

Archibald also noted that many of the counties where offices were closed also leaned Democrat.
racism  voterSuppression  voterID  votingRights  alabama 
december 2017
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