Thursday, August 19, 2010

My barbaric yawp

man asleep on arms at deskI appear to have fallen into a blogging hole. Rather, the last week sort of wrung me out, physically and mentally, in a variety of ways too pedestrian to be worth enumerating, and suddenly I have a lot of tabs and no sign of blogular life. (And might I just say that this gizmo is my new favorite thing, simultaneously inflicting order and enabling procrastination to heady degrees.) Anyway, here are some things of note...
  • Atrios notes a sensible policy that would help us through these challenging economic times, but probably won't even get discussed.

  • It's certainly not a good sign for the recovery when people cause riots just lining up for Secion 8 housing!

  • Here's a good point, about both current (infuriating) affairs and the weaknesses of the Democratic party.

  • Speaking of good points, pithily put, here's one about language and Othering (or the definition of normal).
    (via NowThis)

  • Here's a good essay: The Real Struggle Behind Climate Change: A War on Expertise
    As part of a more general assault on the very notion of expertise, the narrative starts with a truism that is actually true:

    "Not every smart person is wise..."

    only then extrapolates it, implicitly, to a blatant falsehood

    "all smartypants are unwise, all the time; and my uninformed opinion is equal to any expert testimony."
    Interesting points here about the culture of science that gets overlooked (e.g., ambitious post docs are always looking for holes in their elders' theories, in order to make names for themselves, yet the "critics" assume that everyone involved is a "sell-out" marching in lock-step)...

  • Related (but funnier): If sports got reported like science... -- why do we presume it reasonable to require all sorts of esoteric knowledge in our recreation that we find unbearable in more serious matters?
Well, that clears things up a bit, and should be enough for everybody to chew on until I can get my act together a bit. Enjoy!

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