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May 06 2013

[Lounge #417]

colorfulFlowers

This is the lounge. You can discuss anything you want, but you will do it kindly. It’s beginning to look vaguely spring-like, even in Minnesota.

Status: Heavily Moderated; Previous thread

669 comments

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  1. 501
    FossilFishy (NOBODY, and proud of it!)

    Can we have Rum now?

    No.

    But you can have an email, and administrative privileges, and a hearty “Hell yes!” to your contribution to Da Lounge Music ™.

  2. 502
    rq

    FossilFishy
    I wanted the Rum.
    But I’ll take that package, too! :)
    (Replied.)

  3. 503
    FossilFishy (NOBODY, and proud of it!)

    Oh alright.

    [hands over rum]
    [makes a note to add rum to rq's rider]

    A quick response here ’cause I closed my gmail window: Melody? Oh yes please! If this thing isn’t going to have vocals, it bloody well better have a prominent melodic line. Hmmm, hmmm, if only we knew someone who played a melodic instrument, hmmm…..oh wait! That’d be you! :)

  4. 504
    rq

    *ahem* FossilFishy1
    You have my first attempt at a theme suitable for a melodic line. Later efforts can only be improvements. I’m counting on your foundation to help me along! :) (In other words, Fine, I’ll take responsibility for the hummability of this project!)

  5. 505
    FossilFishy (NOBODY, and proud of it!)

    Oh, I’m happy to help with melody if I can. But come the world premie at the Latvian National Opera House* you’re the one that’s going to have to play it, so it better speak to you.

    *Well, stranger things have happened, right? :)

  6. 506
    FossilFishy (NOBODY, and proud of it!)

    Er, that’d be world premier. I’m not sure what a world premie would be exactly, but it doesn’t sound good.

  7. 507
    Nick Gotts

    I’m not sure what a world premie would be exactly, but it doesn’t sound good.

    The followers of Prem Pal Singh Rawat (“Guru Maharaj Ji”) used to call themselves “premies” in the 1970s, when some friends of mine got caught up in his cult (or rather, his family’s – he was in his mid-teens at the time), the “Divine Light Mission”. They did become rather tiresome, and we eventually lost touch.

  8. 508
    rq

    FossilFishy World premiere? Did I miss something here? (As long as there’s no deadline…)
    Well, for what it’s worth, I have played musical theatre (the dancing bits more than the singing bits – guess which one I am) on the stage of the Latvian National Theatre (totally random weird experience one summer, I’ll tell you about it one time!), so nothing is impossible. But I’m only playing there if you come with me.
    (Coincidentally, my choir conductor’s Real Job is at the National Opera…)

  9. 509
    opposablethumbs

    I’m working, I am , I am, I promise. But I just have to say one thing:

    Tony, you are an EXCEPTIONALLY good (and smart) and compassionate person. Jim may not know it but he’s so lucky to have met you.

  10. 510
    John Morales

    WMDKitty, “the meaning of life is *”.

  11. 511
    John Morales

    PS I get About 179,000,000 results (2.69 seconds)

  12. 512
    mildlymagnificent

    Ha! I got that number too – but in 0.14 seconds. I win!

  13. 513
    mildlymagnificent

    As for the fire? It’s taken out one house so far. 450 hectares burned altogether (about 1100 acres).

    And another issue about “out of season” fires – the planes and helicopters are grounded when visibility dictates – so no water bombing as night closes in a couple of hours earlier (remember daylight saving), adding to the smoke, than it would have in March rather than May.

    It’s nowhere near here. It’s at the “other end” of the Mt Lofty Ranges.

  14. 514
  15. 515
    rq

    carlie
    Thanks for linking to that! It has made me laugh many many times previously.
    It’s almost as good as the hobbit kidnap song.

  16. 516
    rq

    Oy. About 46% of Latvians do not believe humans have evolved. 37% believe god has guided evolution. 27% believe that humans lived alongside dinosaurs.
    *sigh* I thought we were better than that.

  17. 517
    Giliell, professional cynic -Ilk-

    HI folks
    Pretty ‘Rupt but otherwise OK
    Appropriate hugs to all who need and/or want them.
    I think I have to come to terms with the fact that I love my parents, but I don’t actually like them.

    +++
    Tony
    Skimming through your post (sorry, no time to read it full although it’s actually worth it) I think yu’Re the best that could have happened to Jim, although I think he might not understand that at the moment.

    +++
    So, you’ve come to the Ohio-kidnapping case.
    I just heard it on the radio that the prosecutor wants to charge Castro with murder for the abortions and my stomach went into hiding. This will be ugly for women. Because nobody will want to be seen as “soft” on that piece of shit.
    So, hey, ladies, you went through years of torture and rape and captivity, but you know who really, really matters in this? Fetuses!

  18. 518
    rq

    Shit, Giliell, really??
    I don’t even…
    Can they do that by law? Then what happens to abortion in general?
    And… It wasn’t enough that he kept three women sexually enslaved for ten years??? What?

  19. 519
    Giliell, professional cynic -Ilk-

    rq
    Apparently Ohio law allows that.
    BUt yeah, that.

  20. 520
    Pteryxx

    Just read something at Shakesville that’s making me wonder what’s really going on with college degrees and employment. It’s becoming common knowledge that tuition’s inflated, colleges are turning into diploma mills, and student loans are basically a scam, which the Shakesville post addresses. However I’m reading accounts like this in the comments (bolds mine):

    Our town has a population of 1/3 (or more) university students and faculty, and ads for jobs will say no degree required but when you go in to interview, they’ll obviously want a degree. On more than one occasion I’ve interviewed for a job with a company owned by a professor who has deliberately and meticulously humiliated me for not having a degree; the first time was a job at a copy shop, the last time was for a part-time job filing papers and answering phones. Since they knew from my resume that I didn’t have a degree, I figure they were deliberately baiting me (and others in my situation) by asking us in to interview. And every time, it’s been clear that they wanted me to be of a certain socioeconomic class and a university degree somewhat guaranteed that, in their minds.

    and that hadn’t occurred to me… that emphasizing college degrees for unrelated employment is just shorthand for classism, and probably also racism; and thus conflating higher education with competence or intelligence is another case of bigotry masquerading as meritocracy. From my privileged point of view (having a degree matching a career in lab research) I’ve been assuming that a degree’s at best neutral and at worst marks you for dismissal as overqualified. Most folks from academic backgrounds probably feel the same way. How the heck can anonymized resumes solve this bullshit? Or even unions, if anyone had any?

    If anyone out there’s already having this conversation, I haven’t seen it… and it badly needs to be had.

  21. 521
    JAL: Snark, Sarcasm & Bitterness

    Last night I woke trembling, shaking and crying. The real nightmares I’ve lived through collied with supernatural horrors to create a monstrosity that left me pawing to turn on a light, any light and quickly, yet symbolized by the fear of my ex watching me through a window.

    It was so fucking awful, which just sounds pathetic as an attempt to describe what I went through. So huddled in blankets to the glare of the computer til I could work the nerve to turn on a light.

    Then, I read. I finished Ship of Destiny by Robin Hobb and it was glorious. In the same way I can’t describe my night terrors properly, I can’t do justice to the work of literature I just finished. The words. All the words flee me and I hope they find their way to Robin Hobb so she can make better use of them.

    Holy. Fucking. Ship.

  22. 522
    Pteryxx

    JAL, I know the fluffy anklehugs are inadequate to the task, but maybe if you have enough of them you can pile them up to block the windows. >_>

    and the Liveship series kicks so much ass. IMHO they might be the best of the set, certainly better than the brand new Dragon series which deals with entirely too many characters and gets unwieldy as a result. (Though I admit a personal soft spot for Fitz…)

  23. 523
    JAL: Snark, Sarcasm & Bitterness

    and that hadn’t occurred to me… that emphasizing college degrees for unrelated employment is just shorthand for classism, and probably also racism; and thus conflating higher education with competence or intelligence is another case of bigotry masquerading as meritocracy. From my privileged point of view (having a degree matching a career in lab research) I’ve been assuming that a degree’s at best neutral and at worst marks you for dismissal as overqualified. Most folks from academic backgrounds probably feel the same way. How the heck can anonymized resumes solve this bullshit? Or even unions, if anyone had any?

    If anyone out there’s already having this conversation, I haven’t seen it… and it badly needs to be had.

    I’ve felt that, with the disdain and disregard for those of us who go to community colleges. Of course, this latest development in class warfare really has roots far deeper. The conversation definitely needs to be had but for how to fix it? Having the conversation alone would go far, but of course those effected most by it and realize it are often discouraged as it is, which is why humanism needs to be pushed forward. We need to work on helping the poor not only survive and thrive, but speak up for themselves and finally be able to make their own choices – instead of being used as tokens or a means to make converts for the cause. We need to be armed in the best tools of our time – actual, useful transportation system, a better starting public education system (no one trust us with a H.S. since everyone knows how much it sucks), internet connections that are cheaper so we can get information and bloom online in the ways other groups have (using the library or the shelter’s computers just for work and being monitored is so degrading), better housing system, unemployment foodstamps, health care, and dental care….

    Of course, even suggesting those things is reviled as “that evil socialism nonsense” and doesn’t get to the heart of the degree problem. With few jobs, there’s more competition. I have two year degrees but that matters not, especially not when going up against those with Master’s degrees and years more experience. Even if it’s not in customer service or financial aid (my fields), they are regarded as the safer choice. They, after all, made it through earning an actual degree for those who don’t have any experience. But of course, this sentiment rests with the “you earn a degree, you don’t buy”, which clearly that isn’t true anymore. So, spreading the word on this issue is of great importance. I fear that we won’t actually be able to deal with degree mills, without treating the poor as people first and more opportunity for employment. At least then, we can make those effected better off. Even if we can’t completely level the playing fields.

  24. 524
    JAL: Snark, Sarcasm & Bitterness

    522 Pteryxx

    JAL, I know the fluffy anklehugs are inadequate to the task, but maybe if you have enough of them you can pile them up to block the windows. >_>

    I will gladly take the fluffy anklehugs and they indeed my feet all the way up to my heart. =)

    It’s been hours since I first awoke, with a hundred pages to finish and I’m much better now.

    and the Liveship series kicks so much ass. IMHO they might be the best of the set, certainly better than the brand new Dragon series which deals with entirely too many characters and gets unwieldy as a result. (Though I admit a personal soft spot for Fitz…)

    Oh… =(

    Well, I’m still lingering in the glory of what I just finished so it’ll probably be a day or so before I delve into Blood of Dragons. I have high hopes still. I do have such a soft spot for Fitz as well. Oh, but my favorite will always be The Fool. Forever and ever and ever.

    And reading the back of Blood of Dragons, I realize Robin Hobb as written under another name. She has more books! YAY! I had no idea she used the pen name of Megan Lindholm.

  25. 525
    Pteryxx

    it’s under-recognized and under-stated, especially through Fitz’s POV, just how important the Fool’s ambiguous gender identity really is… yet it’s portrayed as an integral part of his creativity and beauty. (Another topic I can’t find any conversations about!) When I read the Farseer series I didn’t even have the experience or vocabulary to describe what was so right about that.

    re the Dragon series… honestly if you haven’t gotten annoyed with the proliferation of characters and storylines by book 3, you probably won’t mind book 4. I have a terrible time keeping track of that many individuals… one reason I don’t participate much in the Lounge. <_<

  26. 526
    chigau (違う)

    Good morning.
    Thank you all.
    Here’s the rum.
    Now to catch up.

  27. 527
    Hekuni Cat, MQG

    Tony – You are a very good friend, and Jim is very lucky to have you to talk to him during this very difficult time in his life. *hugs*

    JAL – *hugs and chocolate and kittehs*

  28. 528
    rq

    Wait, what? Re-education and counselling for having an opinion? Or am I missing something here?

  29. 529
    rq

    cicely
    Not even a can subdue its equine overlord. Why resist any longer?

  30. 530
    rq

    There’s a missing goat in my comment @529.

  31. 531
    Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human.

    There’s a missing goat in my comment @529.

    Yet another quote from Pharyngula that, taken out of context . . . .

  32. 532
    Pteryxx

    JAL, also QFT’ing everything you said in 523.

    Of course, even suggesting those things is reviled as “that evil socialism nonsense” and doesn’t get to the heart of the degree problem. With few jobs, there’s more competition.

    Still, competition shouldn’t be an excuse for piling on even more bigotry… and speaking as someone WITH one of those high-end academic degrees, I want to figure out if there’s some way to use my privilege for better here. Many in PZ’s readership are degreed, and many are teachers or professors. At the very least we should be calling out non-technical degree requirements for employment as just as much BS as inflated grades, IQ tests, and good ol’ boy networks.

    On further searching (since that’s my response to everything <_< ) (emphasis mine):

    http://www.nytimes.com/2013/02/20/business/college-degree-required-by-increasing-number-of-companies.html?_r=0

    Like other employers across the country, the firm hires only people with a bachelor’s degree, even for jobs that do not require college-level skills.

    This prerequisite applies to everyone, including the receptionist, paralegals, administrative assistants and file clerks. Even the office “runner” — the in-house courier who, for $10 an hour, ferries documents back and forth between the courthouse and the office — went to a four-year school.

    “College graduates are just more career-oriented,” said Adam Slipakoff, the firm’s managing partner. “Going to college means they are making a real commitment to their futures. They’re not just looking for a paycheck.” [oh FFS. - Pteryxx]

    Economists have referred to this phenomenon as “degree inflation,” and it has been steadily infiltrating America’s job market. Across industries and geographic areas, many other jobs that didn’t used to require a diploma — positions like dental hygienists, cargo agents, clerks and claims adjusters — are increasingly requiring one, according to Burning Glass, a company that analyzes job ads from more than 20,000 online sources, including major job boards and small- to midsize-employer sites.

    This up-credentialing is pushing the less educated even further down the food chain, and it helps explain why the unemployment rate for workers with no more than a high school diploma is more than twice that for workers with a bachelor’s degree: 8.1 percent versus 3.7 percent.

    Some jobs, like those in supply chain management and logistics, have become more technical, and so require more advanced skills today than they did in the past. But more broadly, because so many people are going to college now, those who do not graduate are often assumed to be unambitious or less capable. [OH FFS. -Pteryxx]

    Plus, it’s a buyer’s market for employers.

    “When you get 800 résumés for every job ad, you need to weed them out somehow,” said Suzanne Manzagol, executive recruiter at Cardinal Recruiting Group, which does headhunting for administrative positions at Busch, Slipakoff & Schuh and other firms in the Atlanta area.

    *fumes for ten minutes before reading the next ones*

    http://www.ere.net/2011/12/08/requiring-a-diploma-may-be-discriminatory/

    Says Proskauer Rose attorney Nigel F. Telman, “I could see them potentially … saying at some point” that a high school diploma requirement “may have a disparate impact on a particular class of people.”

    For instance, 87.1 percent of the U.S. population older than 24 has a high school degree. However, only 62.9 percent of Hispanics do. So requiring a degree does have a disparate impact nationally. That alone isn’t illegal. But it does mean you’ll have to justify the requirement as both job related and consistent with business necessity.

    If it’s the ADA that’s involved, you’d also have to also establish that with or without an accommodation the disabled person is unable to do the job.

    So this potentially could be a class-action lawsuit issue.

    http://blogs.hbr.org/hbr/mcafee/2013/02/stop-requiring-college-degrees.html

    You’ve noticed by now that ‘a college degree’ is not in this list of signals. That’s because I think it’s a pretty lousy one, and getting worse all the time. In fact, I think one of the most productive things an employer could do, both for themselves and for society at large, is to stop placing so much emphasis on standard undergraduate and graduate degrees.

    Unfortunately, employers are doing exactly the opposite — they’re putting more emphasis over time on old-school degrees, not less. As a recent New York Times story put it, “The college degree is becoming the new high school diploma: the new minimum requirement, albeit an expensive one, for getting even the lowest-level job.” Dental lab techs, chemical equipment tenders, and medical equipment preparers are all jobs that require a degree at least 50% more often than they used to as recently as 2007.

    [...]

    I think what’s going on in my home industry of higher education at present is something between a bubble and a scandal. And I don’t think it’ll change unless and until employers shift, and start valuing signals other than college degrees. I can’t think of a single good reason not to start that shift now. Can you?

    I found some articles on degrees and racism, too, but nothing on classism specifically. Everything I’ve found so far is about the graduating students burdened with crushing debt, or about increasing opportunities for poor people to get a degree in the first place – nothing about opportunities for people smart enough not to go into the college debt trap.

  33. 533
    Pteryxx

    further OH FFS (from the first NYT article I cited):

    Besides the promotional pipelines it creates, setting a floor of college attainment also creates more office camaraderie, said Mr. Slipakoff, who handles most of the firm’s hiring and is especially partial to his fellow University of Florida graduates. There is a lot of trash-talking of each other’s college football teams, for example. And this year the office’s Christmas tree ornaments were a colorful menagerie of college mascots — Gators, Blue Devils, Yellow Jackets, Wolves, Eagles, Tigers, Panthers — in which just about every staffer’s school was represented.

    “You know, if we had someone here with just a G.E.D. or something, I can see how they might feel slighted by the social atmosphere here,” he says. “There really is something sort of cohesive or binding about the fact that all of us went to college.”

    Dammit, THE HELL WITH ‘CAMARADERIE’ as an excuse for slamming the door on the wrong sort of people! That paragraph just proves that classism’s the driving factor and meritocracy’s got jack SHIT to do with it. And throwing SPORTS into it (meaning flat out tribalism, no mistake) just makes me sick.

  34. 534
    UnknownEric the Apostate

    On the way to work this morning, there was a car with the infuriating bumper sticker “YES, YOU DID… ELECT A SOCIALIST.” I wanted so badly to pull alongside the, of course, old white guy driving the car and say, “Sir, I’m a socialist. If Obama is trying to be one, he’s doing one shitty job of it.”

  35. 535
    rq

    I doubt they feel the ‘camaraderie’ because they went to college or university. The camaraderie is probably there because they’re so much better than everyone else, and anyone who has not been to college/university would be made to realize that and feel it, day after day (he even realizes it himself!). Yeah, trash-talking each others’ college football teams makes you so cool, doesn’t it? It certainly pushes away those who don’t have a college football team to trash-talk. Setting that as some sort of… prerequisite? of participation in that particular place of employment just reeks of classism: oh, your daddy goes to that club? Pfft. Ours has three swimming pools.

  36. 536
    Beatrice, an amateur cynic looking for a happy thought

    rq,

    sorry I couldn’t contribute to the “let’s get rum” efforts, but that last comment was the last time today I did anything online that wasn’t work-related.
    Apparently, I can do work for about two other people. Not including things my job mentor screwed up before he went to vacation. I like him, but I am currently pissed off at him. Good thing it’s weekend and we’ll only see each other on Wednesday (I’m going to a workshop Mon-Tue instead of a colleague who is in hospital).

    —–
    Giliell,

    I’m guessing “They” want to sentence those three guys for as many things as possible, out of righteous anger. Ok, it’s not a really good idea to invent shit, when there are already fucking serious charges the men pretty much can’t escape from.
    You’re right, by making murder charges for killing fetuses, the prosecution is giving a really shitty deal to the three women. Against them, you “only” have kidnapping, holding them as prisoners, rape and violence (unless I’m missing something), but then you have murders. Many murders (or rather “murders”). That will pretty much make the case revolve around the “murders” instead of harmed women. You know, actual people who lost a huge part of their lives, who suffered and will have to live with memories of that suffering.

    But fuck them, when you can throw “worse” shit at the guys and hope it sticks.

    I don’t know whether someone really cares about “murdered” fetuses or they just want to stick every possible charge against the men, but the result is bad for the actual victims of the crime, as well as making a contribution to the overall anti-choice ideas and ideas about how much a fetus vs. woman is worth.

    ———
    JAL, *hugs*

    —–
    chigau,

    Rum!
    Thanks!

    *takes all the rum*
    ha!

  37. 537
    JAL: Snark, Sarcasm & Bitterness

    525
    Pteryxx

    10 May 2013 at 8:34 am (UTC -5)

    it’s under-recognized and under-stated, especially through Fitz’s POV, just how important the Fool’s ambiguous gender identity really is… yet it’s portrayed as an integral part of his creativity and beauty. (Another topic I can’t find any conversations about!) When I read the Farseer series I didn’t even have the experience or vocabulary to describe what was so right about that.

    VERY true. And don’t read reviews for it, it’s just utterly depressing how people have cling ed to gendering the Fool. It’s either her and Fitz should have lived together happily ever after or… wait, does anyone even refer to the Fool as a man?

    *searching, searching, searching*

    Not in reviews, but in forums the only thing people want to know is if the Fool is male or female or if he’s gay…

    *sigh*

    If I’m going back to reviewing books I see no reason why I can’t at least bring it up. Well, the lack of being able to write is a problem….

    re the Dragon series… honestly if you haven’t gotten annoyed with the proliferation of characters and storylines by book 3, you probably won’t mind book 4. I have a terrible time keeping track of that many individuals… one reason I don’t participate much in the Lounge. <_<

    Ahhhhhhhhhh. That makes sense. It’s only the good epic fantasy that I have such a tolerance for large casts and threads. Other books like books about royalty are not only large with the court and all, but speaking of but with the talk of lineage. When the book The Boleyn Sisters was big, I tried reading it and found it just so fucking boring. The Song of Fire and Ice books seem to strain my limits but I persist there with online aides because I’m loving the story.

  38. 538
    JAL: Snark, Sarcasm & Bitterness

    532
    Pteryxx

    Still, competition shouldn’t be an excuse for piling on even more bigotry…

    Funny how deeply ingrained this classism shit is that even I parrot the defenses against change while advocating for change. This capitalistic dog eat dog ‘only the strong survive, the others are fodder to keep the winners going’ hunger games style competition is terrible.

    Oy.

    A very fundamental problem with America is the stupid ‘American Dream’ we’ve been conned into believin in hopes that we too can rise up. Conquering that bootstrapping mentality will be a hard battle fought but we’d be the better for ripping it out and coming terms with reality. It would also cause us to sake those those that use it for both cover and way to bludgeon the oppressed.

  39. 539
    David Marjanović

    O hai!
    Tell John Boehner: Remove Michele Bachmann from the House Intelligence Committee!

    A very fundamental problem with America is the stupid ‘American Dream’ we’ve been conned into believin in hopes that we too can rise up.

    See also: when Bush the Lesser got his tax cuts for the richest 1 % through, somebody did a poll. Turns out 19 % of estadounidenses believed they belonged to the richest 1 %.

    kthxbai

  40. 540
    Pteryxx

    JAL re 537: I admit I said ‘he’ because that’s how the Fool persona mostly allowed himself to be gendered, though in a homophobic society that wasn’t exactly a freely made choice. I’m assuming he’s like some genderqueer people who have boy-identities and girl-identities and switch between them at will (distinct from trans* people who may use the terms ‘boy-name’ or ‘girl-name’ to refer to their assigned-at-birth gender).

    I guess Robin Hobb’s mostly stayed out of it, but she definitely crafted the character (and others) from an informed and considerate place.

    random links for you:

    http://www.lightspeedmagazine.com/nonfiction/interview-robin-hobb/

    So I said, “OK, I want a surname that starts with ‘H,’ and I want it to be short enough to fit on the cover.” And then I deliberately chose “Robin” as an androgynous name, because there are still readers who, you know, if you are writing first-person male they expect the book to be written by a male, so I chose a fairly androgynous name. It gave me lots of room for the reader to step over that threshold and start reading.

    and this Pinterest image board dedicated to the Fool.

    When Robin Hobb was asked by a fan “who could play The Fool in a movie” she replied “a very young David Bowie”.

    re 538: I only know one suggested example of meritocracy in (white-collar, non-technical) job candidate selection that isn’t based on competition (seriously, what’s up with that? nobody makes all the *current* employees re-apply every year, why does that prove anything?) and it’s from this old article on finding the best teachers.

    http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2008/12/15/081215fa_fact_gladwell

    This is the quarterback problem. There are certain jobs where almost nothing you can learn about candidates before they start predicts how they’ll do once they’re hired. So how do we know whom to choose in cases like that? In recent years, a number of fields have begun to wrestle with this problem, but none with such profound social consequences as the profession of teaching.

    A group of researchers—Thomas J. Kane, an economist at Harvard’s school of education; Douglas Staiger, an economist at Dartmouth; and Robert Gordon, a policy analyst at the Center for American Progress—have investigated whether it helps to have a teacher who has earned a teaching certification or a master’s degree. Both are expensive, time-consuming credentials that almost every district expects teachers to acquire; neither makes a difference in the classroom. Test scores, graduate degrees, and certifications—as much as they appear related to teaching prowess—turn out to be about as useful in predicting success as having a quarterback throw footballs into a bunch of garbage cans.

    and the kicker of a conclusion (emphasis mine):

    People like Deutschlander are referred to as gatekeepers, a title that suggests that those at the door of a profession are expected to discriminate—to select who gets through the gate and who doesn’t. But Deutschlander sees his role as keeping the gate as wide open as possible: to find ten new financial advisers, he’s willing to interview a thousand people. The equivalent of that approach, in the N.F.L., would be for a team to give up trying to figure out who the “best” college quarterback is, and, instead, try out three or four “good” candidates.

    In teaching, the implications are even more profound. They suggest that we shouldn’t be raising standards. We should be lowering them, because there is no point in raising standards if standards don’t track with what we care about. Teaching should be open to anyone with a pulse and a college degree—and teachers should be judged after they have started their jobs, not before. That means that the profession needs to start the equivalent of Ed Deutschlander’s training camp. It needs an apprenticeship system that allows candidates to be rigorously evaluated.

    That’s not necessarily going to apply to every job, but at least an apprenticeship model gives us a concept of what a selection process based on training and achievement, instead of competition to get in the door, could look like. As I understand it, apprenticeships and trial periods basically were what old-style entry-level jobs were intended to be. (Some blue-collar professions still have them.)

  41. 541
    Beatrice, an amateur cynic looking for a happy thought

    Now I’ve read Tony’s comment…
    I don’t know what useful thing to say, so just*hugs*

  42. 542
    Pteryxx

    also to JAL: at least this fan gender discussion is less disgusting than the one you found… though the whole topic still gives me a sad. Even the accepting people can’t just leave well enough alone. Which just proves the point that took three whole trilogies to make, I guess.

  43. 543
    JAL: Snark, Sarcasm & Bitterness

    540
    Pteryxx

    JAL re 537: I admit I said ‘he’ because that’s how the Fool persona mostly allowed himself to be gendered, though in a homophobic society that wasn’t exactly a freely made choice. I’m assuming he’s like some genderqueer people who have boy-identities and girl-identities and switch between them at will (distinct from trans* people who may use the terms ‘boy-name’ or ‘girl-name’ to refer to their assigned-at-birth gender).

    That’s a very good point. I’ve known the Fool as a man for 6 books, but as girl for 3 and those last ones are more fresh in my mind. I’ve deliberately stayed to gender neutral isn’t I’m not genderqueer and have learned to proceed with caution so as not to have my privileged whipping about causing damage.

    Of course, there is the theory that like Sa, the White (Fool’s people) are of both genders like Sa. When reading the Liveships, I comfortably used female pronouns when speaking in my head. Afterall, it’s their gender, their presentation and I follow the Fool’s lead. It’s not my course to determine. But this is after all a character and when speaking in general, without present presentation to guide me, I’m at a loss. Do I keep referring to the last presentation I’ve known/read? Does that single out one side instead of acknowledging both? Does the Fool have a greater preference to one? The Farseer and Tawny Man trilogies are more foggier in my memory. I can’t actually recall specifically but I do remember how torn the Fool was with Fitz not accepting Fool’s duel, true nature. The reemergence of the Fool as a man and with Fitz back in the story it makes me wonder if it’s just to make Fitz’s comfortable. The fact that I wonder makes me uncomfortable because I’m in essence questioning the Fool’s gender choice, which I find appalling.

    The fact I’m going on at lengths about a single aspect to the Fool and the world he inhabits makes me both sad and mad people haven’t plumbed the depth of what is in these books, instead to focus on pushing them into the narrow gender roles we have today.

    I guess Robin Hobb’s mostly stayed out of it, but she definitely crafted the character (and others) from an informed and considerate place.

    Agreed. As much as I’d like Hobb to stand up for the Fool, whatever she says would be cannon and most likely drive people away. Books have such a way of shaping one and showing things, which is why I’m so for progressive books. I had no idea what was in store for me when I started reading The Fool’s Apprentice and am so glad more people are exposed to such a character because most similar characters are kept separate in the GLBT section. (And no to mention the horrors mainstream has produced of token, stereotypical GLBT people.)

    When Robin Hobb was asked by a fan “who could play The Fool in a movie” she replied “a very young David Bowie”.

    o.O
    *remembers Labyrinth *
    How did I not think of that before?!? Holy fuck, I think I just swooned.
    But there’s no young David Bowie to play the Fool now and I can’t even think of anyone that’s remotely similar. That’s probably why I never thought of it before.

    The Pinterest Board link is broken. =(

  44. 544
    Lynna, OM

    This counts as two Moments of Mormon Madness. First we have Arizona Secretary of State Ken Bennett (R), known as a “birther” who questioned whether President Obama would be on the state ballot in 2012. Now we learn that Bennett receives $2,000 a month from the Tea Party group Freedomworks. This is not appropriate for a Secretary of State, but it is par for the course for elected officials who are also mormons. They’re not all corrupt doofuses, but far too many of them have a network of other mormons who are also ultra conservative with whom they play patty-cake.

    Next we have Arizona Attorney General Tom Horne, also a mormon, who left the scene of an accident without leaving a note, and was fined. Sounds minor until the news that it was Horne’s FBI tail that turned him for the accident, and that worthy, married Tom Horne had his mistress with him the car.

    It turns out that the feds think Horne may breaking federal campaign finance laws by coordinating with an outside political group.

    Horne, who is arguably Arizona’s top law-enforcement official, first lied about hitting the other car and declined to cooperate with the police. He got a clue later, but you see his first impulse, which is to lie.

    His other impulses including putting his mistress on the payroll as an attorney even though she doesn’t have a law license. Arizona taxpayers pay that payroll.
    TPM Livewire link.

    Salon link for Ken Bennett story. Excerpt below:

    Since taking office in 2009, Bennett has been paid tens of thousands of dollars by Richard Stephenson, a wealthy businessman and a key player for the political group, FreedomWorks.

    Bennett, who had worked for his family owned oil business in the past, draws a monthly $2,000 salary for his work as a board member for the Cancer Treatment Centers of America, a for-profit company Stephenson started in the 1980s.

    Though there is nothing illegal about the payments, it’s “because Arizona has weak, in fact, no conflict of interest laws,” according to Sam Wercinski, the director of the Arizona Advocacy Network…..

    But, as Eric Lach from TPM reports, Stephenson has a long history of supporting conservative activist groups:

    Stephenson was reportedly an early supporter of Citizens for a Sound Economy, the conservative lobbying group founded in 1984 by the Koch brothers. In 2004, Citizens for a Sound Economy split into Americans for Prosperity and FreedomWorks. Stephenson became a FreedomWorks board member. In recent months, Stephenson has been linked to a mysterious $12 million donation made to FreedomWorks last year. And in the aftermath of former House Majority Leader Dick Armey’s attempted coup FreedomWorks, Stephenson agreed to pay Armey $400,000 per year over 20 years in exchange for Armey leaving the group.

  45. 545
    Pteryxx

    bah, let me try that Pinterest again:

    http://pinterest.com/wanderingsylph/my-beloved-fool-robin-hobb/

    JAL, for what it’s worth, it means a lot to me that you’re giving this so much thought. Because I’m one of those genderqueer people who is determinedly neither, consistently, and as such the Fool being so comfortable and even pleased and proud to be a changeably gendered being… is almost as incomprehensible to me as straight cis men or women are. By my reading, the character can’t be called male, female, OR neither; and while I’m happy with neutral pronouns, I get the feeling the Fool would not be. That little speech he (as the Fool) made to Fitz shook me to my core.

    You seek a false comfort when you demand that I define myself for you with words. Words do not contain or define any person. A heart can, if it is willing. But I fear yours is not. You know more of the whole of me than any other person who breathes, yet you persist in insisting that all of that cannot be me. What would you have me cut off and leave behind? And why must I truncate myself in order to please you?

    But that was still the same person, somewhat older and wiser, who five books previously leaped for joy and proclaimed to the world (okay, the meadow) that “I love him, and he loves me!” Even with that barrier preserved… in fact, because of it. (Not to mention the whole plumbing argument!) I’m glad not to know, and to stay the heck away from all those detailed fan-arguments (and polls? srsly, how disgusting is that) arguing for their own interpretations. It would be a transgression to ‘know’.

    (So you see my personal solution to the problem… I’m shaping my sentences so I don’t apply a pronoun at all, unless it’s directly attached to the corresponding persona. It’s all I could think to do.)

  46. 546
    Lynna, OM

    In some follow-up stories concerning the fertilizer plant that blew up in Texas, some remarkable facts have surfaced:

    … Texas employers don’t have to contribute to workers’ compensation coverage; Houston has no zoning laws; and not only is there no state fire code, but local communities are prohibited from creating fire codes of their own. The legislature event killed a proposal to provide resources to train volunteer firefighters because lobbyists for the real estate industry disapproved.

    As a consequence, Texas leads the nation in workplace fatalities and property damage resulting from explosions — by orders of magnitude over other states. …

    “Business friendly” = deadly.

    <a href="http://maddowblog.msnbc.com/_news/2013/05/10/18172306-that-is-the-texas-way Maddow Blog coverage. You can also find coverage from the NYT.

  47. 547
    cicely

    some of y’all complaining about the new Doctor Who season?

    Yes, indeed.
    Clara more than anything reminds me of a comic book character introduced by one writer, for use in their story arc—who is replaced in mid-stream by another writer, who isn’t interested in that character, and has their own story arcs to populate. The character may wander forlornly and purposelessly through the book for a while, or be dropped like a hot rock, or get repurposed and developed by some later writer. Meantime, the reader is left hanging. Not good in the funny papers, and not good on the toob.
    -
    rq, a longer cape would just get sucked into the jet intake easier. I’m against being food-processed! It seems like that would hurt, and I am not completely impervious to pain.
    -
    *hugs* and moral support for Tony. You are beyond awesome!
     
    I feel so sorry for ‘Jim’. So much inner turmoil…and all so unnecessary.
    :(
    -

    cicely, I’m afraid we may have vampire ivy. In fact, I know we do. Is this your doing, eh?

    Don’t see how it could be, even granting that ivy is one of the few plants I’m able to successfully keep alive. You may be experiencing a Speciation Event. In any case, run.
    -
    mildlymagnificent, I’m glad to hear that the fire isn’t close to you. Not that I’m pleased that it’s happening to anybody, mind you….
    -

    And every time, it’s been clear that they wanted me to be of a certain socioeconomic class and a university degree somewhat guaranteed that, in their minds.

    “Them as has, gets.”
    -
    *hugs* for JAL.
    -
    rq: That “goat” is clearly Satan in his well-known secondary form of a black goat. I know—the “goat” looks sorta purpley-brownish, but that’s obviously a trick of the light, a defect in the recording, or Deliberate Subterfuge. And as everyone knows, Satan and Horses go hoof-in-hoof.
    -
    David!
    *pouncehug*
    -

  48. 548
    JAL: Snark, Sarcasm & Bitterness

    545
    Pteryxx

    JAL, for what it’s worth, it means a lot to me that you’re giving this so much thought. Because I’m one of those genderqueer people who is determinedly neither, consistently, and as such the Fool being so comfortable and even pleased and proud to be a changeably gendered being… is almost as incomprehensible to me as straight cis men or women are. By my reading, the character can’t be called male, female, OR neither; and while I’m happy with neutral pronouns, I get the feeling the Fool would not be. That little speech he (as the Fool) made to Fitz shook me to my core.

    Ohhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh! That’s a good quote! I really need to at least go through the previous books and mark out quotes and refresh my memory. It makes a lot sense. I thought of gender neutral as neither/both/other, but if someone is both and is presenting as a female denying their right to use her/she, would seem like an affront; like I didn’t accept them as a ‘real’ woman. They are still both genders, just presenting as one and acting like they want to regardless of gender norms. Acknowledging one and switching it becomes she instead of he isn’t neglecting either.

    Huh. I think I just heard a clicking sound…

    And it makes me shudder to think what a person would be subjected to do or die doing if this is tried in our world. It makes me so sad. It has it’s consequences in their world as well, with Fitz’s confrontation of Amber, but with our sex determined at birth to be splattered on every document and assumed for all, I can’t imagine someone actually being able to live as such. Switching or refusing to be either is hard enough.

    But that was still the same person, somewhat older and wiser, who five books previously leaped for joy and proclaimed to the world (okay, the meadow) that “I love him, and he loves me!” Even with that barrier preserved… in fact, because of it. (Not to mention the whole plumbing argument!) I’m glad not to know, and to stay the heck away from all those detailed fan-arguments (and polls? srsly, how disgusting is that) arguing for their own interpretations. It would be a transgression to ‘know’.

    I’m with you on all of this. I hadn’t even thought to puzzle out or look for discussion on the topic before my previous comment. I just love the Fool in every way and presentation. Puzzling the mystery as always irked me when other characters do it and it flat out enrages me seeing real people do it. Don’t get me wrong, I’d love to travel further south where the serpents talked of deserts and couldn’t figure out why they went there as dragons. The Fool has talked about coming far, far from the south but honestly, I’d keep the Fool and shuck that mystery to the curb; out of my mind completely if going there upsets the balance and forces the Fool into a corner.

    I don’t think Hobb would do that, necessarily, just how much people focus on this makes me worry. Why not let be? Why not accept? The Fool is a greater character than I could ever hope for yet they debate to decide which cage to bind him in.

    (So you see my personal solution to the problem… I’m shaping my sentences so I don’t apply a pronoun at all, unless it’s directly attached to the corresponding persona. It’s all I could think to do.)

    That actually makes a lot of sense and I’m sorry I didn’t see it that way. Perhaps because in this world demanding to be more than just male or female comes with the price of people assuming you’re lying/scamming/pretending if you move between them. It’s one or the other, expanding the options to neither, both or other is a daunting, haunting, terrible task. Still people cling to classifications like with orientation bi people are just seen as animals who’d fuck anything. There’s no room for inbetween or maybes or differences or changes. =(

    I must thank you for the wonderful conversation and opening my eyes. Phayngula has made me a better person, before that it was just books and thankfully, I’ve gotten my hands on greatly helpful ones.

  49. 549
    Pteryxx

    JAL: it’s a lot like time travel and verb tenses, isn’t it? After posting I read someone using the singular “they” and now I’m changing my mind (oh noes!) and thinking the Fool character as an adult (and as a whole) might best be a them. It just seems to click better in my grammar-brain that way.

    Also, some folks on that Pinterest have suggested other possible actors, with photos. (Or someone just needs to clone David Bowie. <_< )

  50. 550
    JAL: Snark, Sarcasm & Bitterness

    549 Pteryxx

    JAL: it’s a lot like time travel and verb tenses, isn’t it?

    It is! At least, I know that I wouldn’t be an asshole if I met the Fool personally and would be totally accepting. Those other people? Come off like they would pester for a yes or no and not accept anything given.

    Also, some folks on that Pinterest have suggested other possible actors, with photos. (Or someone just needs to clone David Bowie. <_< )

    This picture of Tilda Swinton looks like she’d fit the physical part of the role anyways. Actually acting the part though? I haven’t a clue. Of course, I haven’t read Blood of Dragons and Amber is still freshest in my mind. There’s a possible bias there. I must admit the sharp lines and angles are appealing to me and definitely put me in the mind of the Fool.

    However, I’d go with cloning David Bowie. There are plenty of wonderful reasons to clone him, play the Fool would just be awesome. Provided Hollywood doesn’t butcher the film but I have little faith in that endeavor. With the sheer scope of it and depth of emotions, I don’t think a movie could do it justice.

    Of course, I haven’t watch The Hunger Games, The Lord of the Rings or Game of Thrones so I have no recent knowledge of how well they did. I’ve always preferred books to their movie counter parts, ever since I saw The Shinning with Jack Nicholson and then read the book, I stick to what I know and love.

  51. 551
    UnknownEric the Apostate

    However, I’d go with cloning David Bowie. There are plenty of wonderful reasons to clone him

    My wife can think of some reasons why she’d like to clone David Bowie.

    A very fundamental problem with America is the stupid ‘American Dream’ we’ve been conned into believin in hopes that we too can rise up. Conquering that bootstrapping mentality will be a hard battle fought but we’d be the better for ripping it out and coming terms with reality. It would also cause us to sake those those that use it for both cover and way to bludgeon the oppressed.

    Bingo. Brilliantly said. The American Dream is a trap.

  52. 552
    dontpanic

    rq, re Bunnicula. Ah, didn’t read it in my ‘younger years’ (published in 1979, I’d have been graduating high school). But my son loved that series… to the point I practically had the first two books memorized. This was/is a boy who doesn’t like … mmm, drama/suspense or new things … so we tended to re-read the same things again and again at bedtime.

    Tony, wow, great letter; what a great person you are. I agree w/ opposablethumbs @ 509.

    Re: employers requiring college degrees. That nags at me too. I’ve got an advanced degree, which overall didn’t come too costly (partly because my parents helped subsidize my 4 yr degree, partly because it was cheap then, and partly because I got lucky in getting support from research assistantships/scholarshipsfor the graduate degree). But I worry for my son, who has issues (ADHD, anxiety, physical health problems, etc) that are going to impair/hinder his efforts for a 4yr degree. He’s smart and (sometimes) capable, but I have a hard time picturing him working thorough the system. And I find this trend of upping the bar… disheartening.

    Test scores, graduate degrees, and certifications—as much as they appear related to teaching prowess—turn out to be about as useful in predicting success as having a quarterback throw footballs into a bunch of garbage cans.

    Well, based on my wife’s experience in taking some graduate ‘Ed School’ classes … that’s because they seemed to be junk. And grad school (in non-Ed programs) generally doesn’t really prepare one to be a teacher. I do like the idea of the apprenticeship approach. It would also help to allow weeding out those that aren’t right for the job before they get so invested in a program of study that they can’t afford to quit and move on to something else.

    As I understand it, apprenticeships and trial periods basically were what old-style entry-level jobs were intended to be.

    Yes, and sadly we, as a society, have moved away from that approach to assuming that no “on the job” training ever needs to be done. That we can select from candidates based on paper qualifications and drop them in as cogs in a machine. Which just leads to amping up the lying on resumes and completely crazy qualification requirements. I remember discussions in the tech sector where people were reporting job ads requiring N years of X (X=java, if I remember correctly), where N was longer than X had existed. That kind of ridiculousness is not a good trend for any employment area to move towards.

    The camaraderie of affiliated sports teams? Hell, I attended two major universities and I don’t give a flying-f about their teams. Even with my degrees this would alienate me.

    ———

    Well, shit. Nurse called w/ thyroid ultrasound results: small nodule on the right side, they want to perform needle biopsy. Is “small” small? Or is it just a term they use to keep people from freaking out? My current state: uncomfortably numb (to harken back to the Pink Floyd thread). Given my history with needles, I’m at least as anxious about the biopsy procedure as any results from it. Hmmm, going through the day (+ weekend probably) light-headed and physically shaking … wow, that’s something to look forward to. </sarcasm> fuck, fuck, fuck.

    And I’ve noticed more and more that the throw away greeting of “how are you?” just ticks me off. I answer “okay” even when I’m not.

  53. 553
    dontpanic

    And now I’ve borked my HTML tags. Sorry.

  54. 554
    Esteleth, [an error occurred while processing this directive]

    dontpanic,
    Having been there, when they say that the nodule is “small,” they generally mean that it is less than 25% of the size of that side of the gland.

    One bit of caution: needle biopsies to the thyroid hurt like a fucker. There’s a major nerve cluster nearby. When I had mine, I felt it in my feet.

  55. 555
    Esteleth, [an error occurred while processing this directive]

    Context: I had a biopsy on a nodule that was ruled “small” by the examining physician. It was later excised, and found to be 30% of the total mass of the gland.

  56. 556
    dontpanic

    Esteleth Oh, great. My needle issues, coupled with “don’t like my neck being touched” issues (most likely a result of schoolyard bullying), and now you say it is fucking going to hurt. Can they put you out/under for such procedures? Actually, if there is something wrong with the thyroid and it could explain the fatigue and nausea of the last two years, that would be a positive. But really not looking forward to the biopsy. Well, thanks for the heads up.

  57. 557
    Beatrice, an amateur cynic looking for a happy thought

    dontpanic,

    My mum has a small node nodule on the left (right? – forgot) side and went for the biopsy. Which she waited a couple of months for. Then she waited a couple of months to see the doctor about the results. Doctor said that the sample taken was too small and she’ll take another one… in September.

    I’m going to get really angry if it turns out in September that they should have operated sooner. Like, now.

    But she wasn’t particularly upset by the biopsy itself. Got it done, went to work afterwards.
    *fingers crossed* that your biopsy passes quickly and with as little discomfort as possible. And with good results too, of course.

  58. 558
    cicely

    *hugs* and *calming manatees* for dontpanic. When do they want to do the biopsy? In any case, hopefully it’ll come back clean.
    -

  59. 559
    Esteleth, [an error occurred while processing this directive]

    I don’t see why they couldn’t sedate you for the procedure. You’d have to ask.

    You’re having unexplained fatigue and nausea and have a nodule on your thyroid? Could possibly be connected. Take a peek at this page and this page. See how many symptoms you have. However, the nausea is more hyperthyroidism and the fatigue is more hypothyroidism, so it is possible one is connected and one isn’t, or alternatively, you’re having cycling. That can also happen.

    Sorry to have added to your distress. :(

  60. 560
    dontpanic

    Thanks to all for *calming manatees*, etc.

    Esteleth, yeah, sort’a skimmed those before the ultrasound. That’s why I’m spinning it in my mind as having an up-side.

    Biopsy should happen soon, just because I can’t stand the uncertainty not that they particularly emphasized any rush. I have decent insurance and the nearby hospitals probably have capacity, so there shouldn’t be any reason to delay.

  61. 561
    rq

    ‘rupting.
    Ryan Gosling won’t eat his cereal.
    Warning for lots of gifs.

  62. 562
    opposablethumbs

    I’ve got no relevant experience or expertise, dontpanic, but a fuck of a lot of sympathy. I hope it goes smoothly (with all the sedation you want) and comes back with good news (and possibly useful information that makes it possible to eliminate the fatigue and nausea).

  63. 563
    Esteleth, [an error occurred while processing this directive]

    As an aside, dontpanic, post-biopsy, you’ve got a great excuse to eat as much ice cream as you want. It’ll soothe your throat. :D :D

  64. 564
    Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human.

    Hugs to Tony and dontpanic.

    I actually got two things done today (in addition to running up and down to the visitor center every time someone wanted to pay to enter or pay for a train raid).

  65. 565
    Esteleth, [an error occurred while processing this directive]

    Dontpanic, if you want specific information, please feel free to ask here, or if it is something you hesitate to bring up here email me. I can be reached at my nym at the googles.

  66. 566
    Dalillama, Schmott Guy

    tony
    Jim is lucky to have found you indeed.
    Pteryxx #520
    That is an excellent point, and one that I never saw before (because I’m blinded by the privilege that comes with a middle class upbringing; there was never any question that I was going to college.)

    #533
    This, so much.

    (So you see my personal solution to the problem… I’m shaping my sentences so I don’t apply a pronoun at all, unless it’s directly attached to the corresponding persona. It’s all I could think to do.)

    Although I haven’t read the books, I have a character that I’ve been playing in an online RPG for quite some time who is a genderless, bodiless entity that exists primarily by possessing the bodies of people/other animals/plants/inanimate objects, all of which they can shapeshift at will, and is capable of being in multiple places at once; I typically use the gender (and name) of the current host to refer to a particular instantiation, or ‘it’ if it’s an inanimate object, and “it” when I’m referring to the whole entity as a way of emphasizing how alien it is. (The character perceives itself as a singular entity, and, while it is aware that there is such a thing as gender, it really, really doesn’t understand it.) I’ve noticed, though, that the rest of the players usually use “he”, unless the host is specifically female.

    JAL
    *Hugs* Night terrors suck.

    Never got into the Liveships books; I can’t recall exactly why.

    We need to be armed in the best tools of our time – actual, useful transportation system, a better starting public education system (no one trust us with a H.S. since everyone knows how much it sucks),

    and subsidized higher ed too; student loans are bullshit.

    internet connections that are cheaper so we can get information and bloom online in the ways other groups have (using the library or the shelter’s computers just for work and being monitored is so degrading),

    There’s no Earthly reason we couldn’t have serious high-speed Internet to every building in the country, and public wifi to boot.

    better housing system, unemployment foodstamps, health care, and dental care

    Single Payer, for medical and Dental, convert UI and foodstamps both into a guaranteed minimum income, and completely overhaul housing; just for starters, rent control.

    I fear that we won’t actually be able to deal with degree mills, without treating the poor as people first and more opportunity for employment.

    Yes and no. I think we could deal with the degree mills by having enforced standards for education, but that would only solve the proximate problem of the degree mills. I think that the larger solution involves worker-owned co-ops becoming the standard form of business.
    dontpanic
    *hugs*. Best of luck with the medical procedures.

    Yes, and sadly we, as a society, have moved away from that approach to assuming that no “on the job” training ever needs to be done. That we can select from candidates based on paper qualifications and drop them in as cogs in a machine. Which just leads to amping up the lying on resumes and completely crazy qualification requirements.

    Oh, yeah. See, it costs money to train people, and MBA classes teach that anything that costs money is bad and should be offloaded onto someone else, in this case the jobseeker. They expect you to pay for the training that they then take advantage of.

  67. 567
    dontpanic

    Ogvorbis [...] pay for a train raid Hmmm, should I ask? Sounds interesting.

    Thanks, Esteleth. I’m a doctor damn-it, but not that kind of doctor. But I probably won’t ask for too much more information. And for a good reason … if people remember back to an earlier discussion about needles and blood here in the Lounge.

  68. 568
    Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human.

    Ogvorbis [...] pay for a train raid Hmmm, should I ask? Sounds interesting.

    ‘Raid’ should have been ‘ride’. All hail Tpyos, Ydada, yadda, dyada.

  69. 569
    chigau (違う)

    I’m sure “train raid” is a tpyo but I picture a role-playing cowboys and dynamite thing that would be awesome!

  70. 570
    dontpanic

    chigau Exactly; I had high hopes, only to have Ogvorbis dash them and grind them to dirt under guise of “typo”. [Grump] This is why we can’t have anything nice.

  71. 571
    Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human.

    Mp. mp[ a tu[p. a

    Wait. Moves left hand.

    No, not a typo. Tpyos. A typo is a just an error. Tpyos is the god of typographical errors. And the pantheon includes Borkquotia, Grammaticus, and Henway.

  72. 572
    WMDKitty -- Survivor

    og

    Wait. What’s a Henway?

  73. 573
    Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human.

    WMDKitty:

    About 3 to 5 pounds. Much bigger and the meat gets tough.

  74. 574
    cicely

    Oh, WMDKitty.
    *shaking head*
    A Henway is the place where the chicken crosses the road.
    -

  75. 575
    WMDKitty -- Survivor

    Well, crap. I just walked right into that one.

  76. 576
    cicely

    It’s Two, Two, Two Straight-lines in One!
    -

  77. 577
    ednaz

    rq, Did I miss you again?
    If you have any roses left that need naming, I would be thrilled if you could name one after me and my great grandmother – Zoe.

    (You were the dancer in brown. : ) )

    -

    I wanted in on the train raid, too! You use blanks, right? : D

    -

    Tony, You are a very good person. Jim is so lucky you take the time and care to address his feelings.
    I paused before I wrote ‘feelings’. It’s more than that, isn’t it? His whole life.

  78. 578
    Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human.

    WMDKitty:

    If’n it makes y’all feel any better, Henway really is part of the Tpyos pantheon: Henway is the god of old and/or bad jokes.

  79. 579
    Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human.

    I wanted in on the train raid, too! You use blanks, right? : D

    I’ve been shooting blanks for (lemme see, Girl is a little over 20 . . .) over 20 years.

  80. 580
    rq

    ednaz
    Yes, I have you down for the roses! Sorry, I forgot to confirm.
    Brown? There’s a dancer in brown? Or did you mean the deep red (as opposed to black and magenta)? :) (I think you have it, but I think youtube’s colour translation is crappiness incarnated.)

    dontpanic
    You can have all of my *hugs* for tonight, I am scared of any kind of medical establishment and/or procedure, to the point of having a panic attack when my ob/gyn unexpectedly had two students sit in on a check-up and they had to leave the room for me to be capable of speaking.
    I hope your procedure is as painless as possible, and the results encouraging!

    +++

    Personally, I believe trains are magic. Because. End of debate.

  81. 581
    rq

    Ogvorbis
    If we’re all getting in on the train raid, I sure hope you shoot blanks!

  82. 582
    Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human.

    If we’re all getting in on the train raid, I sure hope you shoot blanks!

    Crap. You’re talking about guns, aren’t you? Not, well, y’know? Damn. Sorry. Nevermind.

  83. 583
    Portia (aka Smokey the Advocate)

    Best wishes and hugs, dontpanic.

  84. 584
    Portia (aka Smokey the Advocate)

    I caught your innuendo, Og. :)

    I’m still snickering at Henway.

  85. 585
    rq

    I discovered a voice today. And because it’s my sister’s name day.

    +++

    Ogvorbis
    It’s ok. Not your fault I didn’t quite pull it off right. My fault.
    You’re awesome. *hugs* You cannot make me change my mind.

  86. 586
    Lynna, OM

    Impeach Obama! … again. Since Republicans have grown increasingly hot under to collar about Benghazi, calls for impeachment have resurfaced.

    Salon recently put together a list of calls for impeachment issued by Republicans. Excerpts below:

    Fast and furious …
    Boston bombing …
    Joe Sestak …
    Guns …
    Debt [Rep. Steve King promised “Obama would be impeached” if the government defaulted. -- Republicans are busy trying to figure out a way to force the government to default.]
    Balanced budget …
    Immigration …
    DOMA …
    Bush tax cuts: Anti-tax activist Grover Norquist said if Obama failed to extend the Bush tax cuts, “Republicans will have enough votes in the Senate in 2014 to impeach.”
    Island giveaway conspiracy: A Texas congressional candidate wanted to impeach Obama in 2012 for supposedly giving away a string of islands to Russia.

    Recess appointments: Fox News’ Neil Cavuto wondered if Obama could be impeached for making recess appointments. Sadly, a Fox legal analyst said no.

    Libya …
    Birth certificate …

    Just existing: When a man told Rep. Michele Bachmann that President Obama should be impeached just because, Bachmann replied, “Well, I’ll tell you, I’ll tell you, I agree, I agree.” Texas Republican Michael Burgess told a Tea Party group in 2011 that he would push to impeach Obama for just generally being liberal. When a reporter asked him later what the charges would be, Burgess said he wasn’t sure, but said “it needs to happen” so Republicans can tie up Obama’s legislative agenda.

    And now we have Benghazi.

  87. 587
    ednaz

    rq – Hooray!! Rum for Everyone!

    -
    Ogvorbis – Hee hee : D

    -
    WMDKitty – Your Henway is alright. : )

  88. 588
    ednaz

    Yes, rq, deep red. Hee. Suits you. *big thumbsup*

  89. 589
    rq

    ednaz
    :) Thanks. That was years ago. I don’t look like that anymore! (As for the colour, yes. One day I will wear it again.)

    +++

    Sometimes I wonder why I do it at all.
    I have everything; why do I catch myself thinking, I wanted more for myself? Time for bed, is what that means.

  90. 590
    Hekuni Cat, MQG

    dontpanic – I hope the biopsy results are negative and that the test itself doesn’t hurt very much. *hugs*

    David M and cicely – *pouncehug*

  91. 591
    ednaz

    rq, You can have everything + one more thing.

    I say so. : )

  92. 592
    carlie

    Jeopardy version:

    A: A Henway.

    Q: What brand of piano do chickens prefer?

  93. 593
    carlie

    Wow, I didn’t think that was bad enough to clear the room for over an hour!

  94. 594
    Cerberus is working overtime at the outrage factory

    Impending Unemployment and Job Discrimination Update-

    With everything else going down in my life, it would have been nice to just let what has already happened and been happening wind down the final month with little new excitement.

    But no! No, I don’t get to have that.

    So today while teaching Chemistry, one of our shoddy lowest-bidder piece of shit plastic bags came pre-packaged with a hole in it and one of the students spilled a mildly dangerous reaction (the reaction is water soluble but can include Calcium Chloride and Carbonic Acid) on their bare upper leg. Since all the stages are water soluble to aid cleaning, the usual response to spills is to get the affected area under a stream of water until there is absolutely no sign of itching and it is pretty unlikely to still be on it. Since I couldn’t get the student’s thigh under the sink, I used the emergency shower instead because, yanno, that’s kinda why it’s there.

    Had the kid hold their leg under the stream, cleaned up any other spill from the shit bag and then checked on the kid, made sure they were okay, turned off the shower, sent them back to continue, called janitorial for the spill. Kid seemed fine, though disappointed with the wetness of their shoe.

    So this is at the tail end of the class. And at the end of the class, my new shiny new tormentor, I mean direct boss, comes in and asks about the spill being mopped up. I inform her of the incident. She responds by basically trying to chide me for using the shower at all and suggesting instead that I use a wet paper towel to wipe off the chemical from the student (yeah, rubbing wet paper towels on a young child’s upper thigh, that sounds like a great solution).

    Basically, she was yelling at me for causing a mess and making too big a deal of things (this is important).

    And that pissed me off because it was all about how messy the emergency shower is and how it requires clean-up and can’t we do something cheaper that puts the student at more risk for spreading contamination. So we discuss that, I inform her that I made the best decision I could have and needed to wash the affected area as quickly as possible and the shower was the most convenient and fastest way to do so.

    So while I’m stewing about that bullshit, she goes off somewhere and then comes back with Evil HR Director and the Floor Manager. I guess Evil HR Director was just gleefully waiting for something, anything to burn me on, because she comes swinging with the deep concern voice about how I hadn’t taken the issue seriously enough and that what I should have done was call Security and my direct boss (not for the child’s safety mind you, but rather to protect the institution if the child’s parent decided to sue them, cause fuck viewing children’s safety as more important than king profit) immediately to inform them of the terrible toxic spill. And yes, the meeting is complete with my new direct boss trying to playact being disappointed with me for my failure to take things seriously.

    I informed them of what went down, the way I defaulted to how I was trained to handle students getting that material on themselves and, since I’m a little bit of a snarky lady, how the direct boss when she found out about the incident actually advised that I take it less seriously and involve even less people.

    I also informed them that we were trained to handle spills in wet lab a specific way and they went off with “you might be in serious trouble” face as they noted that they were going to research this training and there’ll be a follow-up meeting (be very scared, disappointed, “we talked early about you informing your direct boss when things pop up” thus the most important fact isn’t the Keystone Cops way we rushed to try and burn you on something the person who summoned us doesn’t even take seriously, but rather some esoteric point about not communicating with your boss, and of course all the attempts to dodge from real issues when they didn’t hold the upper hand and try and erase circumstances in order to get me to plead forgiveness and give them an excuse to burn me).

    The whole thing was a fucking joke in how incompetently desperate it was, which pissed me off to no end because there’s no fucking need. There’s only about a month left this season. They are already scheduling me as low as they can go. For the next two weeks, I am scheduled 1 half-day and then 2 half-days (OMG! Amazing!) while everyone else is working an average of 3 full days including people with much longer commutes and as I’ve noted in earlier comments, that’s not unusual. I was perfectly resigned to just riding out the rest of the year being kicked in the goolies and taking it with a half-hearted shrug.

    But apparently, they have been so fucking desperate for something they can cling to as an excuse for why they totally aren’t a pack of bigoted assholes that they trip over the first thing they vaguely see without any consideration over whether they even have anything or whether they even needed to bother.

    Overall, I just fucking wish they were less subtle or more subtle about their trans-discrimination so I could either have something obvious to burn them with in a lawsuit or I could continue to ignore their bullshit and focus on short-term survival and all the other bullshit in my life.

    Oh, and I talked to the other teachers and asked them what they would have done in the situation. All of them responded with just washing the affected area, calling janitorial if they had to use the shower and continuing the lab. Not a one of them thought that informing Security or Direct Boss was part of procedure and when we were all in a mini-meeting with Direct Boss at the end of the day and I brought this up to her, she admitted herself to being confused on procedure and remembering being taught that it was all about rinsing off the area and continuing the lab (but hey, if she could fetch the big guns to burn me over bullshit she didn’t believe in, she wouldn’t let that stop her. Fucker.)

    It’s sort of one of those things that infuriates me on every possible level. The complete dehumanizing lack of real concern for the child in question, but the cold willingness to exploit their “safety” (but not in a way that gives a damn about safety, but only about protecting their nickel-and-dime business practices) if it seems like it’ll give an excuse, any excuse. The complete lack of necessity of this bullshit considering they already had a fine system for dancing on the very edge of the letter of the law and it doesn’t really put them out to throw me a paltry handful of hours here and there and just ride out the month. The pathetic attempt at Catch 22 where they literally try to yell at me one direction and then flip around and try and burn me the other direction (Oh, forgot to mention, at the end of the meeting, they said they’d be back immediately to take the details of what happened, because they were just so concerned and that was such an important step in the process and why oh why didn’t you inform security fast enough. Yeah, turns out they never showed up, attempts to find them were absolutely fruitless and when I talked to security about it, he said it sounded like a waste of his fucking time and he appreciates not being called out on that bullshit, but said I could send him an email if the floor manager was demanding something, so I did). Or just the utter lack of respect on every level. They couldn’t even disguise their glee that finally, oh finally, they knew they got me and they were going to enjoy finally pinning me to the ground and seeing me gone. The flying fuck?!? They could at least continue to pretend that they aren’t gleefully complicit in the attempt to ruin my life because trans* people give them the icky.

    Also, since I was pissed off at this bullshit, I ended up chatting with several other coworkers about it. An acquaintance in another department who asked about why I haven’t been around and I reported some of the bullshit and she was horrified. The receptionist who is always very nice to me who definitely looked a bit haunted in general on the subject (since she has previously tried to deny that her direct boss, the Evil HR Director, could be involved and no such denials were in place today, I think she’s realized exactly the scum she works for). And another nice lady who I occasionally talk to while filling up my morning tea. I ended up dumping a whole bunch of stuff that’s been going on to her, but she was pretty much already in “oh dear, that’s not right” mode after the whole “I’m working a single half day shift, while everyone else is working 3 full days on average”. She apologized for not having a plan to fix things as from what she’s overheard as I’ve prepared kids, she thinks I’m a fantastic teacher and I thanked her for just listening and apologized for dumping on her.

    Overall, I’m just pissed, pissed, and more pissed. I get that they hate me being the way I be. I get that they are willfully ignoring the spirit of the law while dancing in the “won’t get caught” zone of the letter of the law and that that fills them with confidence, but hateful fucking baptists, they didn’t have to go the full tacky and spike the ball in the end zone over it.

    Ugh! I have two interviews in the upcoming week which will hopefully get me employment for the summer at least and this Sunday when I call my mom for Mother’s Day, I get to find out if I’m still disowned by her and if we’re still going to Comic-Con or not this year (which may or may not have a direct effect on whether I can be hired by at least one of the companies interviewing me next week.

    Fuck the transphobic world very fucking much. I think I’ve had my fill of fucking grues for the next long while.

  95. 595
    Cerberus is working overtime at the outrage factory

    dontpanic-

    Oh no! Here’s hoping it’s nothing too bad. Good luck and hugs if you need them.

  96. 596
    Rowan vet-tech

    Parsnip threadrupt!

    He is officially 4 weeks old now (well, 4 weeks and a day). He is beginning to look like an actual feline! Don’t do it Parsnip! Don’t perk those ears up!

    http://imageshack.us/a/img593/2503/parsnip29days2.jpg

    Parsnip is a polite kitten at feeding time.

    http://imageshack.us/a/img818/2339/parsnip29days1.jpg

    Rosemary is… well. Rosemary.

    http://imageshack.us/a/img138/8859/rosemary4wks1.jpg

    The back of my hand and my wrist covered in a tracery of red lines that burn. Plus, now that she has canine teeth, there is a great deal of yelling when she bites my hand or toes in her never ending quest for food. But of course, she will not attempt to eat the canned food I have offered. -_-

    Parsnip continues rather dumb. I love him to bits, and will forever regret not being able to keep him, but damn. He’s really not got much going on in the brain department. He’s doubtless going to end up lazy and fat; perfect pillow cat to snuggle with.

  97. 597
    Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :)

    I want to punch those people. I’m bad at being reassuring, sorry. I wonder if there’s some way to discretely let the child’s parents know that your boss apparently doesn’t think you should have done your best to prevent them from being injured, because it’s too much hassle and expense?

    Also, if your mom won’t help you get to ComicCon, maybe the horde can?

  98. 598
    WMDKitty -- Survivor

    Uh, hi, I’ve got a delivery of HUGS for Cerberus

  99. 599
    Rowan vet-tech

    Cerberus…. D: D:< I bites them for you? I have sharp pointy teeth and can do much damages. Or I can throw Rosemary at them and she can slowly slice them to death with her tiny razor claws.

  100. 600
    Dalillama, Schmott Guy

    Big *hugs * for Cerberus. What a bunch of unmitigated shitheads.

  101. 601
    Cerberus is working overtime at the outrage factory

    Because I’m a giant nerd who has been tutoring way too many stats students lately, I did a quick and dirty t-distribution for the hours I’m getting in the next two weeks compared to the rest of the instructors. Just for the two weeks (not factoring in all the other weeks for months were I have been getting substantially less hours than everyone else), it was pretty impressively substantial within a 95% confidence interval with a t of -4.774.

    But hey, it’s just coincidence that that keeps happening week after week, no discrimination going on here. It’s just a freak occurrence that would be nearly impossible to replicate by raw chance.

  102. 602
    Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls

    Finally got the iPad for the Redhead. Took a bit of work, but it is now talking through WiFi with my iMac, with shared internet connection. Web access! But not password protected or encrypted. Need to work on that.

    Now I’m working on making it more usable for her condition. Checking the built in voice activation program (Siri), and maybe buying a voice recognition app for e-mail and the like, reducing the need to type anything. Also getting a book app installed as the main selling point. I already bought a couple of stands (one heavy duty deigned for use in the kitchen, with a stylus, and a lighter movable stand) so she could have the iPad steady as she scrolls through the book. I may need to get a bluetooth headset/microphone for best voice commands.

    Using iTunes, it can easily synch pictures and video. Chris’s bunny videos for her amusement and enjoyment. After she kills me first.

  103. 603
    Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls

    Cerebrus, as a professional chemist, your handling of the situation was spot on. The first concern is always those contaminated, and getting them cleaned up/decontaminated by any reasonable means. Using the shower was indicated unless you could effectively hose the contaminated area. But in this case, no need for paramedics or other emergency personnel except as CYA–providing those higher up are willing to pay for the call.

    Once the immediate danger is over, then the chain of command, like responsible faculty member, department head, and the safety/EHS department should usually be informed of the incident. You should have received training on the SOP for that. HR has no business anywhere near the site, or having anything to do with incident. Utterly unprofessional behavior on their part.

    Management always hates it when the root cause is their cheapness.

    Hang in there.

  104. 604
    Dalillama, Schmott Guy

    Management always hates it when the root cause is their cheapness.

    Which appears to be the case a depressing percentage of the time.

  105. 605
    Jessa

    Management always hates it when the root cause is their cheapness.

    Heh. In my last job, I remember the look on the management’s faces when it was pointed out that their unwillingness to spend a few hundred dollars for an electronic GC vial crimper was why they had to spend thousands of dollars to treat a lab worker’s repetitive motion injury.

  106. 606
    cicely

    Hekuni Cat: *pouncehug*
    -

    Wow, I didn’t think that was bad enough to clear the room for over an hour!

    That is the only form of applause appropriate to a really stinky pun.
    :D
    -
    Cerberus: *hugs* and *calming manatees in chocolate sauce*. I am so very sorry about your situation. That is one hell of a shit-burger they’ve prepared for your consumption.
    “Safety Theater”, sibling to “Security Theater”.
    *spit*
     
    Best wishes on the interviews.
    -
    Parsnip continues to be Made of Kyoot. Not that Rosemary isn’t cute, but Parsnip is special.
    :)
    -

  107. 607
    ednaz

    Cerberus, I am so sorry. I hope your interviews go well. That would at least give you a little breathing room?

    Is it O.K. if I vote for Death By Rosemary for your evil bosses?

  108. 608
    ednaz

    rowanvt
    Thanks so much for the Parsnip update. He is just too cute.
    It seems Rosemary hides her dangerous side by looking sweet.

    Cute kitties *squee*

    I always think of you as rowant – the v is silent. Is that weird?

  109. 609
    Rev. BigDumbChimp

    My poolish is extremely active.

    In case you were wondering.

  110. 610
    WMDKitty -- Survivor

    I don’t know how he does it, but Parsnip just keeps getting cuter!

    Rosemary’s pretty damn cute, too, but… Parsnip!

  111. 611
    WMDKitty -- Survivor

    Uh, does anyone here have, like, super research skills?

    I need information on the legality of going barefoot in WA state.

    From my own searches (RCW) I haven’t found anything stating that a passenger on public transit must wear shoes. (Also, even if it’s a WTA-specific rule, in all the years I’ve been riding the bus — barefoot! — I have not once, until now, been told to put shoes on.)

  112. 612
    Rowan vet-tech

    Ednaz, whatever works for you. :P I chose my username for two reasons. First is that my girl cat is named Rowan, and I’m a vet tech hence the VT. But if you shorten it down to just ‘initials’, it becomes RVT which the letters behind my named. Registered Veterinary Technician. I’ve finally been using this username enough that I’m starting to identify with it a lot. The name I use the most is my WoW character, which is Theraphee and I answer to Thera better than I do my birth name at this point in time.

    *isadork*

    Glad the Parsnip piccies are making people happy. Tomorrow… tomorrow he gets a *bath* (again) and I will be taking photos of bedraggled baby.

  113. 613
    Rowan vet-tech

    Wow… I gave quite the offering to tpyos in that post. So tired and yet must stay up for another 2 hours to feed and clean all the snakes, and double check the eggs.

  114. 614
    Rev. BigDumbChimp

    The Bad Plus

  115. 615
    dontpanic

    Cerberus sounds like your day was far worse than mine. *Hugs*.

  116. 616
    John Morales

    WMDKitty,

    I need information on the legality of going barefoot in WA state.

    Why not ask the WA state police?

    (Workplace safety aside, why would there be such a law?)

  117. 617
    WMDKitty -- Survivor

    Honestly, I don’t expect the police to actually know the nitty-gritty details of the law. (And I don’t trust them.)

  118. 618
    rq

    Cerberus
    I have nothing but *hugs* and all the moral support. What assholes!

    +++

    A woman and her balancing act. And to think it all starts with a feather!

  119. 619
    ednaz

    Thank you for that link, rq. That was amazing.

  120. 620
    rq

    Remember Christian the Lion? Here’s his full story.

  121. 621
    rq

    I’m angry. I’m pretty sure they destroyed the Canadarm, along with the entire space station. Way to scare people. (Also, George Clooney needs to start making less movies. I want to see different faces and hear different voices in these things.)

  122. 622
    FossilFishy (NOBODY, and proud of it!)

    Parrowing

    You’ve got an email in which the phrase “I’m sorry.” features prominently.

  123. 623
    Portia (aka Smokey the Advocate)

    Thanksfor the reminder, FossilFishy…that’s exactly the kind of email I was going to send Parrowing today.

    Cerberus:
    I can’t express how mad that all makes me. I hope you find something better, is the best I can do in words. *hugs* and commiserations.

  124. 624
    rq

    Is everything alright with Parrowing? Did I miss something?

  125. 625
    Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human.

    Damn, Cerberus. That is ridiculous. Hugs and some cognac to you.

  126. 626
    Portia (aka Smokey the Advocate)

    rq:
    My reason for apology is that I have let her email go unanswered for an embarrassingly long time. I don’t know to what FossilFishy refers.

  127. 627
    dianne

    Cerebrus, if you have the energy and time for this sort of thing, might I suggest that you document every incident of harassment, discrimination, and poor judgement by your immediate and higher superiors at work. This may be useful to you should you need to sue them at some point. Especially if they try to interfere with your getting another job (i.e. bad letters of recommendation or similar.)

  128. 628
    rq

    Portia
    Ah, ok. :) I was worried there was a reason to worry.

    (By the way, Parrowing, hi! if you’re reading, and *hugs* if you want them, just for the sake of having them!)

  129. 629
    David Marjanović

    O hai! There’s a particularly simple-minded creationist over at the Sb version of Pharyngula! Starts here.

    Having read this article and its comments (search the page for “leftish”) and this one (frankly, if Cohn-Bendit is against you, you’re doing something wrong, not right), I signed this petition.

    Cerebrus, if you have the energy and time for this sort of thing, might I suggest that you document every incident of harassment, discrimination, and poor judgement by your immediate and higher superiors at work. This may be useful to you should you need to sue them at some point. Especially if they try to interfere with your getting another job (i.e. bad letters of recommendation or similar.)

    All seconded. *restocks hug truck* *pours mushroom soup into USB port*

    Well, all except for the misinterpretation of Cerberus. :-)

  130. 630
    Lynna, OM

    It’s no secret that our nation may very well be experiencing the hand of judgment. It’s no secret that we all are concerned that our nation may be in a time of decline…. Our nation has seen judgment not once but twice on September 11. That’s why we’re going to have ’9/11 Pray’ on that day. Is there anything better that we can do on that day rather than to humble ourselves and to pray to an almighty God?

    That, my friends, is Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.) speaking at a congressional prayer event in Statuary Hall at the U.S. Capitol.

    The event is organized by Joseph Farah, a nackle-ass who publishes the World Net Daily.
    http://www.rightwingwatch.org/content/bachmann-911-and-benghazi-were-gods-judgment
    Bachmann’s special flavor of uselessness combined with christian arrogance is on display in the video available at the link.

  131. 631
    Lynna, OM

    To add to the discussion up-thread about David Bowie, the Catholic League is hating on him:

    In the Catholic League’s news release, titled “Bowie’s ‘Jesus’ Video Is a Mess,” the organization doesn’t mince words. “David Bowie is back, but hopefully not for long,” it says. “The switch-hitting, bisexual, senior citizen from London has resurfaced, this time playing a Jesus-like character who hangs out in a nightclub dump frequented by priests, cardinals and half-naked women.”

    International Business Times link.

  132. 632
    Lynna, OM

    A female teacher at a Catholic high school in Columbus, fired after the name of her same-sex partner appeared in her mother’s published obituary, is fighting to get her job back.

    Cleveland Plain Dealer link.

  133. 633
    Lynna, OM

    Texas cheerleaders have received court approval to proselytize for their Texas god, (a god who is very into sports, especially football), with banners. CBS News link.

  134. 634
    Cerberus is working overtime at the outrage factory

    Cause my life needed another punch, my partner came home last night with her own tale of how she’s being driven out of her workplace by a determined bully poisoning the well with her direct boss. So yesterday she got one of those internally inconsistent and overly long lists about all her supposed flaws which are mostly all projected crap from the bully and boss in dumping their shit that is being sent to HR and she’s “got a month” to turn it around before the mandatory follow-up meeting.

    And the whole thing mixed with everything else has her so depressed she’s in the hollow shell phase of depression. She’s got really strong experience and qualifications so I think she’ll be able to bounce to another bills-paying job hopefully but it’s so not something we need right now, either financially or emotionally.

  135. 635
    Lynna, OM

    Here’s the David Bowie video that has the Catholic League so upset.
    http://www.vevo.com/watch/david-bowie/the-next-day-explicit/USRV31300003

  136. 636
    chigau (違う)

    Thanks Lynna.
    *watches*
    meh

  137. 637
    Lynna, OM

    chigau @636, “meh.” Yeah, just proves that it takes very little to set the Catholic League careening off into the land of the Offended.

  138. 638
    Lynna, OM

    The Maddow Blog posted an excellent summary of all the questions Republicans have been asking about Benghazi. And the answers are there as well … again.

    I doubt this will make any difference to the Faux News crews that thinks none of their questions have been answered, therefore COVERUP! But it should make a difference. Really, it should.

  139. 639
    cicely

    Sad Cat Diary
    -
    Cerberus: “When it rains, it pours.” “Them as has, gets.” “Why stop now, just when you’re having so damned much fun.”
    And something about “A turd in the hand…”
    *hugs* and *choice of beverage* and piles of sympathy.
    -

  140. 640
    Dalillama, Schmott Guy

    *Moar hugs* for Cerberus

  141. 641
    ednaz

    Sending hugs for Cerberus and Partner.
    It sickens me the way your bosses treat you. I am so sorry.

  142. 642
    ednaz

    rowanvt
    Very cool username story. *thumbsup*
    -
    rq
    Thank You for the link to Christian The Lion. It makes me a little scared, but it ends up o.k. : )
    -
    Lynna OM
    Thanks for the links to Bowie and Rachel. So very interesting.

  143. 643
    birgerjohansson

    Oh. shit!

    The Last Time Atmospheric CO2 was at 400 parts per million Humans Didn’t Exist http://scienceblogs.com/significantfigures/index.php/2013/05/10/the-last-time-atmospheric-co2-was-at-400-parts-per-million-humans-didnt-exist/

  144. 644
    JAL: Snark, Sarcasm & Bitterness

    *waves to everyone*

    *pile of hugs for Cerberus and Partner*

    —————

    I found this catching up on a webcomic, Science The World, a program for helping with STEM eduction in K-12 grades. I don’t have any information beyond what’s listed but I figured someone might be interested in contacting them.

    —————————–

    Fucking A, I hope these nightmares don’t last much longer. (Oh, even I know I’m kidding myself.) Woke up again after a couple hours of sleep at 1 a.m. This time the nightmare included my Roomie turning on me and letting the Ex in the house and not stepping in to stop him as….things happened. *shudder*

    *sigh*

    Well, at least I have the four books of the Rain Wilds to read still.

  145. 645
    David Marjanović

    *restocks the hug truck again*
    *chocolate of all kinds*

    Hugs for Azuma Hazuki, too. If you read this, please spill the evidence; I’m all virtual ears. :-) :-) :-)

    The Last Time Atmospheric CO2 was at 400 parts per million Humans Didn’t Exist

    We’re living in interesting times. And we’ve made them ourselves.

    A Pacific-Northwest-style temperate rainforest in the Atlantic Northwest would be fucking awesome, but it’s too bad that the palaeobatrachids and the albanerpetontids stay dead. :-(

  146. 646
    David Marjanović

    Cerberus & partner, and JAL:
    http://emergencykitten.com/ (refresh the page)
    http://calmingmanatee.com/

    Oh, and, “Humans Didn’t Exist” depends on the definition of “human”. Homo (as usually used) didn’t exist, though. We’re stupidly going where no man in that sense has gone before.

  147. 647
    carlie

    Ok, Doctor Who can just fuck right off now. “Tight skirt”?? Really, Gaiman??

    Cerberus – I can’t believe how much is happening to you at once. I’m so sorry.

  148. 648
    Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human.

    Right now, I am ripping Johnny Cash’s Folsom Prison concert and, next, I wil rip Bob Dylan’s John Wesley Harding. Not only that, but our library also has the complete Rolling Stone rock and roll collection and I am ripping those, too. I has good music!

  149. 649
    broboxley OT

    Cerberus, sounds like HR is stepping on Compliance Officers toes. hugs offered and hope those asinine bigots get what they deserve. Good luck on the interviews, you clearly know your stuff.

  150. 650
    rq

    It’s a cat day today.
    cats that looks like male models

    And the sad cat’s diary, fitting my mood… I was promised good weather and needed it, instead we have rain!
    And Henri’s ennui always bears repeating on such days. (He’s got 4 episodes now!)

    Also, Best Friend wants to eat her sunscreen. I just… Fluoride, GMOs, UV denial now. *sigh*

    Happy Mother’s Day!

  151. 651
    Beatrice, an amateur cynic looking for a happy thought

    rq,

    So your friend is going to give money to food supplement manufacturers instead of those sleazy sunscreen manufacturers.
    What a rebel! Does she also believe in homeopathy?

  152. 652
    Beatrice, an amateur cynic looking for a happy thought

    There was maybe too much snark in that comment. Sorry.

  153. 653
    mildlymagnificent

    Couldn’t resist it. I read the comments – until I couldn’t stand it.

    For those unfamiliar with the knowledge base and reasoning skills of such people, the author happily endorsed one commenter’s proposal that drinking raw milk would be “good” for sunburn prevention.

    There are no words.

  154. 654
    Beatrice, an amateur cynic looking for a happy thought

    Human skin is natural , sun is natural, raw milk is natural…. how could anything possibly go wrong when everything is natural?

  155. 655
    opposablethumbs

    Fleet of pantechnicons full of hugs for Cerberus and partner. Fuck, make that several fleets :-((((

  156. 656
  157. 657
    Beatrice, an amateur cynic looking for a happy thought

    carlie:

    Ok, Doctor Who can just fuck right off now. “Tight skirt”?? Really, Gaiman??

    It’s possible, if I’m in the mood to give them the benefit of the doubt, that that was supposed to be a remnant of the other guy, who was an asshole.

    I’m still a bit pissed off at the series for the last episode’s treatment of Jenny, so this is not helping.

  158. 658
    Portia (aka Smokey the Advocate)

    *extrahugs* for Cerberus and Partner. That’s such crappy behavior with almost-as-crappy timing. : (

    —–

    How’s everybody’s (or rather, anybody, it’s a ghost town in here) weekend?

  159. 659
    Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human.

    How’s everybody’s (or rather, anybody, it’s a ghost town in here) weekend?

    Dunno yet. My weekend starts in 55 minutes you calendarist oppressor!

  160. 660
    opposablethumbs

    Did … something odd happen to FtB today? I couldn’t get onto the site for quite a while, and now all of a sudden it looks like I can again.

    … anyone else?

  161. 661
    birgerjohansson

    Ogvorbis, re. Johnny Cash, I read today that it is precisely ten years since he died.
    Also I read a lot of praise for his final music video, “Hurt”. His wife passed away weeks after it was made and JC himself did not linger many months after that.
    “Hurt” http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ur8j4xWe_44

  162. 662
    Portia (aka Smokey the Advocate)

    *shakes fist*

    You calendar rebel! I will not waiver. It is Sunday. Evidenced by the fact that the church bells across the street annoyed me as usual this morning.

  163. 663
    Giliell, professional cynic -Ilk-

    HI folks
    Still ‘Rupt
    But Mr. and I celebrated our 6th aniversary yesterday!
    And I’ve been crafting a lot. After all I needed Something new to wear*

    Hugs for all of you, ‘specially JAL and Cerberus

    JAL
    Would you mind gicing me your post adress (mail: nymÄTyahooDOTde)?
    I have a little something for your Little One

    Rowanvt
    Can I ask you a favour?
    Or actually two…
    I remember that you draw the most gorgeous dragons, but I forgot to bookmark your Deviantart page. Would you link to it again and give me permission to use a painting for a totally non-comercial-I-just-want-to-try-this embroidery project?

    *Yes, that’s my tits.
    Yes, that’s my actual clevage
    No, I’m not propperly ashamed for all the guys who still have to behave themselves

  164. 664
    Portia (aka Smokey the Advocate)

    Pretty necklace and happy anniversary, Giliell! :)

  165. 665
    Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human.

    You calendar rebel!

    In the Ogvorbisverse, this is Friday.

    I will not waiver.

    Not to worry. All you need to do is request a waiver form (DI-W-45(j) amended (2003)) using a DI-1-MG-42 (7.92mm). Just cross out machine gun and write in “Waiver form”. Delivery is guaranteed before the sun becomes a blackened cold cinder.

    It is Sunday.

    Only to calendarist oppressors.

    Evidenced by the fact that the church bells across the street annoyed me as usual this morning.

    ‘Round these parts, the church bells chime every day of the week.

    And happy mothers day (US) to you and all of the other mothers.

  166. 666
    chigau (違う)

    opposablethumbs
    I didn’t notice anything today but I’ve been meatspacing for a few hours.
    When it does happen, I usually blame my POS netbook.

  167. 667
    Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls

    Happy Anniversary to Giliell and spouse. Free grog and swill at the saloon for the couple tonight.

    Project iPad for the Redhead continues at a slow pace. Finally able to invoke reasonable WiFi security, Chris’s bunny videos installed and synced via iTunes. Kindle and iBooks installed, with a book on evolution PZ posted as freebie for Kindle a year or so ago, and the iPad user guide in iBook. Have the iBook store pointed at knitting selections. Set up a shortcut for a TV guide with preset usual channels for late night background noise. Still several days away from springing it on her.

  168. 668
    Dalillama, Schmott Guy

    Portia
    Hay fever and quiet, mostly.

    Opposablethumbs
    Me too. Not just here, all of FTB.

    JAL
    *Hugs* Nightmares suck by all accounts. I hope yours end soon.

    Giliell
    That’s a lovely necklace.

    birgerjohansen
    That’s a depressing thought. The music video is also wonderful.

  169. 669
    PZ Myers

    NEW THREAD.

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