Bronze Age Insight.

Due to the seal’s small size and veining on the stone, many of the miniature details are only clearly visible via photomicroscopy. (all images Courtesy of The Department of Classics, University of Cincinnati, and used with permission).

Due to the seal’s small size and veining on the stone, many of the miniature details are only clearly visible via photomicroscopy. (all images Courtesy of The Department of Classics, University of Cincinnati, and used with permission).

Drawing of the detailed combat scene captured on an agate sealstone discovered by the University of Cincinnati’s Sharon Stocker and Jack Davis. (images Courtesy Department of Classics, University of Cincinnati).

Drawing of the detailed combat scene captured on an agate sealstone discovered by the University of Cincinnati’s Sharon Stocker and Jack Davis. (images Courtesy Department of Classics, University of Cincinnati).

The piece of stone may only be a little over 1.4 inches long (~3.5cm), but the meticulous detail of the carved scene featuring three warriors in hand-to-hand combat is a stunning display of ancient artistic skill and it may challenge our perceptions of naturalism in the Ancient Aegean era.

[…]

Jack Davis, who is one of the excavation’s co-leaders, suggests the find is unprecedented. “What is fascinating is that the representation of the human body is at a level of detail and musculature that one doesn’t find again until the classical period of Greek art 1,000 years later,” Davis explained to UC Magazine. “It’s a spectacular find. … Some of the details on this are only a half-millimeter big,” he said. “It seems that the Minoans were producing art of the sort that no one ever imagined they were capable of producing. … It shows that their ability and interest in representational art, particularly movement and human anatomy, is beyond what it was imagined to be. Combined with the stylized features, that itself is just extraordinary.”

The source for the battle scene may not be clear, but researchers believe that the miniature battle must reflect a legend that was well known to the people of the region. The tomb also held an intact skeleton, which UC researchers have labeled the “Griffin Warrior” for the discovery of an ivory plaque depicting a mythical griffin. The 3,500-year-old shaft grave also includes more than 3,000 objects, including four solid gold rings, silver cups, precious stone beads, fine-toothed ivory combs, and an intricately built sword.

You can read more at Hyperallergic, and definitely check out the Griffin Warrior.

Red Shoes? Let’s Dance! Oh. Nevermind.

Red Shoes! Red Shoes! Illuminati! Squuuuaaaawk! Oh yes, uh, satanism, child abuse, child sex slaves, all that.

Making a second appearance on a program hosted by one-time “Survivor” contestant Anna Khait that was streamed on Mike Cernovich’s Facebook page last Thursday, Liz Crokin continued on her mission to expose the supposed fact that leading government, entertainment and business leaders are involved in a massive satanic pedophile cult by linking Podesta’s choice of shoes to Illuminati mind-control.

“Tony Podesta is obsessed with his red shoes,” Crokin said. “There is symbolism for red shoes in the occult and it’s also tied to satanic ritualistic abuse and the trafficking of children.”

Or, you know, Mr. Podesta might really like the colour red, and he might really like those shoes. Perhaps your obsession with someone else’s shoes isn’t terribly healthy, Ms. Crokin. I have a fair number of red shoes m’self. What’s not to love? Do blue suede shoes get in on this at all?

“The Illuminati, the elites, they use ‘The Wizard of Oz’ to mind control child slaves,” she added. “They use certain films to program children and part of the programming is having them watch these films

Uh huh. I did not like The Wizard of Oz in the least when I was sprog. Bored me silly. Whether or not sprogs like the film, it’s not at the level of oooOOOOOoooOOooo mind control. Now, out of this one movie, you’re focusing on the ruby slippers? Really? Oh, you christian conservatives are so void of imagination. There’s a lot of material to work with there, and you go with shoes.

and they also sexually abuse them and they physically abuse them because the abuse splits their personality and creates different personalities, so then they are able to program them and control them and they virtually become MK-Ultra programming.”

That one merits you one universe worth of Shut the Fuck Up and sit down, Ms. Crokin. A whole lot of kids suffer terrible abuse, and they do not end up with “split personalities” which make them ideal “agents” in one of your idiotic scenarios. You can leave all of us who have suffered abuse the hell alone. I’ll add that christian conservatives are high up there when it comes to abusing children. Look to your own house, you vile bag of poison.

“This is a known thing,” Crokin insisted. “They use ‘The Wizard of Oz’ to mind control these child sex abuse victims. Well, what does Dorthy wear in ‘The Wizard of Oz’? Red shoes!”

No. It. Is. NOT. A. Known. Thing. It’s something you made up, and you’re pretending that red shoes make this nefarious connection between whatever and whatever. I’ll be heading into town today, and already have my outfit ready, which includes brown boots. I am so tempted to change everything so I can wear a pair of red shoes. Everyone should wear red shoes! They’re festive and cheerful! And, it’s the right time of year for that, too.

Via RWW, where there’s video.

Word Wednesday.

Defenestration / Defenestrate

Noun / Transitive Verb.

1: a throwing of a person or thing out of a window.

2: a usually swift dismissal or expulsion (as from a political party or office.)

– defenestrate, transitive verb.

[Origin: de – + Latin fenestra window.]

(1600s)

Due to the limitations of early Krakau translation software, the first words broadcast to humanity by another sentient species, in Earth Year 2153 and at a volume of 104 decibels, were:

“We come in harmony to defenestrate your dingo.”  – Terminal Alliance, Jim C. Hines.

Defenestration is an act with a very long history, intimately intertwined with politics, and more than once, the start of a war.

A Solid Christian.

Roy Moore speaks at Voters Value Summit 2017. (Photo: Jared Holt for Right Wing Watch).

Oh, so many evangelicals of the religious reich are propping up Roy Moore with absolute zeal, and a gigantic raft of lies. I’m not going to address all of them; I have a busy day ahead, but some of this, ugh, toxic morality is so damn disgusting. I will make the point that it’s hardly uncommon for men in their late 20s/early 30s to pursue people in their early teens; it happened to me often enough, and yes, that was in the 1970s. That sort of age gap wasn’t as frowned upon then, a man of 32 with a solid career was considered to be a good match for someone 17 to 19 years old, a steady hand, so to speak. Yeah, I know. I am thankful attitudes have changed in that regard. All that said, it does not make that behaviour any less skeevy or questionable. There’s a massive power imbalance there, and that was particularly true in Moore’s case, as he was a district attorney, and most teenagers aren’t completely clear on just how much power is or isn’t contained within that position. Moore was in a position to make an effective threat.

The fact that Moore was so very careful to not engage in intercourse tells me he knew damn well what he was doing was wrong, and he didn’t want to be caught. He certainly didn’t want to be punished in any respect, so he was very cautious. Does the fact he’s been married the last 32 years make it okay? No. I’ve been married for 38 years, together with my partner for 40 years. What does that tell you about the state of my marriage? Nothing. What does that tell you about my character and actions for the last 40 years? Nothing.

I expect many of the evangelicals supporting Moore wouldn’t be upset if a 32 year old wanted to date their teenage daughter, and that really does not make anything better. It makes it much worse.

The American Family Association stood by its endorsement of Moore, writing in a statement, “AFA Action believes Justice Roy Moore to be a truthful man and a solid Christian.” Bryan Fischer, a radio host for AFA’s American Family Radio, wrote that establishment Republicans were turning against Moore because they “despise ordinary Americans like us who believe in the Ten Commandments, natural marriage, normative sexuality, right and wrong, the Constitution as written by the Founders, the rule of law, and the Judeo-Christian tradition of truth claims and moral values.”

I’m an ‘ordinary’ American. I’m mixed race, childfree, bisexual, and identify as female. I’m an atheist who is committed to inclusion and acceptance. I live rural, with one partner and too many animals. I do not believe in the ten commandments, natural marriage, or missionary position only and don’t fuckin’ enjoy it. I don’t believe in the constitution; I think it’s high time for a rewrite. I believe in marriage equality. I do have a strong sense of right and wrong. I somewhat respect law. A lot of it is damn stupid, and needs serious reworking too, and the police system needs to be torn down and redone completely. WTF is the “Judeo-Christian tradition of truth claims and moral values”? Truth claims? Jesus Christ. How about the truth? I’m not allergic to that. I am allergic to the twisted, abusive bullshit you asses present as ‘moral values’. Your ‘moral values’ say Moore is a stand up guy, not a skeevy man who used his position to impose on teenagers. Why in the hell should I pay attention to such a version of “right and wrong” ? No. Just no.

AFA president Tim Wildmon told Religion News Service, “I don’t think this kind of story will change support for him among Christians since he has categorically denied it. Most will see it as dirty politics.”

There are none so blind as those who refuse to see. That little sentiment should be familiar to you all.

Jerry Falwell Jr., one of President Trump’s strongest allies in the Religious Right, told RNS, “It comes down to a question who is more credible in the eyes of the voters — the candidate or the accuser.” He later clarified that he believed the candidate.

Ah, the christian version of bitches be lying. How lovely.

Anti-choice activist Janet Porter wrote in WorldNetDaily that she trusts Moore in part because he doesn’t think her “heartbeat bill,” which would ban abortions as early as six weeks into pregnancy, goes far enough. Porter laid out her theory that Washington Post owner Jeff Bezos encouraged the paper to manufacture accusations against Moore in order to bring him profits. “Not sure who to vote for?” she wrote. “Just look at who the enemy is firing at the hardest. He’s the guy you want.”

Don’t be dragging Lucifer into this mess. Your imaginary archvillain hasn’t done anything. If Moore was such an amazingly upstanding christian, why didn’t he fight off the temptation to impose himself all over one teenager after another? Why, when the urge came over him to accost a teenager or go hunting them at the local mall, was this solid christian not on his knees in prayer? The only enemy here are Moore’s own actions. “Hey, it was a long time ago” does not excuse it. Look at Moore’s attitude towards bodily autonomy rights. Is this a man who views women as full human beings? No.

Ugh, ugh, ugh, so damn disgusting. RWW watch has the full rundown, replete with links.

Further reading from Mano Singham.

Editing Louis C.K.

A few days ago, PZ had a post about Louis C.K.’s apology. Like a lot of people, I wasn’t impressed at all. I commented to the effect that there’s a simple test when it comes to the quality of an apology: who is it about? In Louis C.K.’s case, his apology is all about him. That was bad enough, but as it was going to be all about him, he missed some pertinent bits, like all the denials over the years, and the cover-ups. Basically, it amounted to a “poor, pitiful me” in my eyes.

It is actually possible to sincerely apologize and do it well, and Leah Fessler, Annalisa Merelli, and Sari Zeidler show Louis C.K. just how that’s done.

…However, Louis C.K.’s “apology” devolves into an attempt to paint himself as suffering and worthy of sympathy. He says that until the Times report, he did not realize the full extent of the harm he caused women by taking out his penis and masturbating in front of them. He also tries to reduce his culpability by noting that, at the time of his actions, he thought simply asking if it was OK to masturbate in front of women was enough to guarantee consent.

What’s more, Louis C.K. does not mention his attempts to cover up his actions, nor his stubborn refusal to acknowledge the accusations that have been made several times before.

He does, however, make sure to note how “admired” he was, and is, both by the women he harassed, and the comedy industry at large. In fact, he repeats it four times in his statement.

We took it upon ourselves to edit Louis C.K.’s “apology” in order to make it a real apology. This is how we believe it should read:

The edited version is a fine apology, it’s a pity it didn’t come from Louis C.K. You can read the whole thing here.