Thursday, October 19, 2017

Saturday roundup

This has the single-best plain-English explanation I've seen on why solid rocket propellants matter.

A police chief found a better way to police in the Philippines.

Uzbekistan appears to be opening up.

I mostly agree with Bret Stephens on the left's double-standard on communism. I don't agree that reigning in Wall Street abuses and excesses is communism.

Karma is a bitch (and I think highly of bitches).

There is too much good writing on the harassment and #MeToo phenomena; I'll just share a few pieces. First, Rebecca Traister explains about what it means when these awful but powerful men set the public discourse. Eve Peyser explains why we shouldn't let pass 'harmless' or 'good-natured' assaults on our dignity. You might have seen Lupita Nyongo's infuriating experience. And Margaret Renki sums up the saddest part--that pervasive harassment is endemic.
There is nothing unusual about these stories. They are the ho-hum, everyday experiences of virtually every woman I know, and such stories rarely get told. There will never be a powerful social-media movement that begins, “Today I ate breakfast” or “Today my dog pooped and I cleaned it up” or “Today I washed my hair with the same shampoo I’ve been buying since 2006.” We tell the stories that are remarkable in some way, stories that are surprising, utterly unexpected. The quotidian doesn’t make for a good tale.
Lindy West takes on another double standard:
What happens when #MeToo meets “I’m not a feminist, but”? It goes without saying that men across the political spectrum routinely victimize the women in their lives. It goes without saying because feminists have already been saying it for years. Yet, in the flood of anger and catharsis this past week, I’ve seen multiple eloquent and heartbreaking accounts of rape and abuse from conservative women, who are careful to specify that they are not like those other women, those radicals, those tedious, troublesome feminists. That’s fine. Whether you like us or not, we carved out this space for you.

Samantha Bee's PSA is priceless:

Moving on... contrary to what the Third Way will try tell you, some people aren't interested in coming together and getting along.

On a lighter note, someone inadvertently dictated an amazing comment.

Sunday, October 15, 2017

Sunday roundup

Watch this Holocaust survivor tell her story.

We can negotiate with North Korea.

We've been collectively deceived about the safety of glyphosate. You can worry less about radiation, but here's how to get any residual cesium out of your food.

Good for this kid for sticking to his values and god help his mother for her lack of boundaries.

I'll spare you all the awful takes on Weinstein, though you should definitely read Wonkette's take-down of them. Always read Jessica Valenti, Alyssa Rosenberg, and Laura Bates. Rosenberg here:
More women, and men like Terry Crews, are going to have to speak out about their experiences. Men are going to have to join them in speaking up about behavior they’ve witnessed and reckon honestly with the times they failed to intervene in bad situations. More companies are going to have to suffer escalating and maybe even fatal costs to their bottom lines and reputations before they have the incentives that will make it essential that they take every allegation of wrongdoing seriously every single time. And law enforcement officials like Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr., who declined to prosecute Weinstein, will have to learn that it is fatal to their careers not to aggressively pursue sexual harassment and sexual assault cases. We actually have to vote against candidates who are on the record bragging about how they grab and assault women, rather than excusing their behavior as inevitable or their talk as hyperbolic.

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Quick Tuesday ramble

"What's your secret?" asked the woman who carded me at the checkout at Trader Joe's the other day. "I was way off." I thanked her and passed up the opportunity to say, "I eat plants."

I saw a bunch of old friends over the weekend (at and around a mutual friend's wedding), one of whom had been vegan but was no longer because "it wasn't working for her." She was, apparently, making poor food choices. This is a friend who has struggled with her weight and watched me lose twenty pounds without trying upon eschewing animal products, but I was already eating healthily when I made the change. There's nothing magic about vegan; if you eat vegan crap, you won't lose weight.

I was going to ramble to you about a bunch of other things--being sick of project management in my personal life (related to the wedding on Saturday and a friend who came into town for it) but I'm sick of being annoyed at people and things. I come by easy annoyance honestly; my mother was annoyed by everything, and I don't want to be like that. In the past 24 hours I've told off two customer-service people who didn't read my message and copied-and-pasted a canned response that was not helpful to me. I am legitimately annoyed at people who do that kind of thing. I've also been annoyed at a friend or two for essentially being more lazy and less logistically inclined than I, and for making it my problem, which is also possibly fair. But god knows I've also made my shit other people's problem, and either way, I'm sick of being annoyed. I'm ready to let things go.

Tuesday roundup, brought to you by...

...American Airlines, which made it impossible for me to buy a ticket via tablet, so I had to rev up the laptop.

On male allies and double standards for feminism.
I don't think either of my parents ever got quite this crazy, but Fox News definitely poisoned them both, especially my mother.

I've always preferred the direct route to delivering disappointing news. Recall how my ex tried to make a production out of breaking up, which would have really upset me more if I hadn't also been trying to break up with him.

Monday, October 9, 2017

Monday roundup

The village where Che was executed still remembers that day. The photo at the end is amazing.

How would our press cover the Las Vegas massacre if it had occurred abroad?

The Justice system can be Kafkaesquely unjust.

The Times is not fucking around.

New York DAs have a corruption problem.

There are some good cartoons here.

If you've followed NYT's mindfulness series, this is an amazing parody.

Have some tweets:

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Tuesday roundup

Don't test a thermonuclear weapon in the ocean.

If you've been following the Times' somewhat absurd mindfulness series, this will amuse you.

Look for the helpers and these days, the late-night comedians.

Hotels are nickel-and-diming.

This is satire but this is the sexting that would work on me.