This was posted on bulletin boards at Yale this fall semester after a couple episodes of police tasing students. The police in New Haven have also been using SWAT raids to enforce compliance with the underage drinking laws.
Think about that.
There is a great story about how Lawrence Tribe’s son used to be a college policy debater back in the 80’s. He made a practice of running affirmatives that were vulnerable to federalism criticisms, and opponents would often indeed respond with federalism arguments citing Tribe’s latest federalism scholarship, to which Tribe’s son would respond with a list of author indicts (mostly in the vein of “my dad’s frickin’ crazy”).
Note the final words (“come as you are”). It is strange to think that many Americans, particularly those who define themselves through their attachment to a Christian ideology, are not so open and accepting of difference as McDonald’s is willing to be.
H/T: Justin Scott.
Found this while looking for phase-space diagrams:
Ice-nine (ice IX) is the low-temperature equilibrium, slightly denser, structure of ice-three (Space group P 41 21 2, cell dimensions 6.692 Å (a) and 6.715 Å (c) at 165 K and 280 MPa ). It is metastable in the ice-two phase space and converts to ice-two, rather than back to ice-three, on warming. The change from proton disordered is a partial process starting within ice-three that is only completed at lower temperatures, but with a first order transition near 126 K. The hydrogen bonding is mostly proton-ordered as ice-three undergoes a proton disorder-order transition to ice-nine when rapidly cooled in liquid nitrogen (77 K, so avoiding ice-two formation, see Phase Diagram); ice-three and ice-nine having identical structures apart from the proton ordering .
The ice-nine, described by Kurt Vonnegut in ‘Cat’s Cradle’ , with a freezing point well above ambient under normal atmospheric pressure is fortunately a completely fictitious material, reportedly invented by the Nobel prize winner Irving Langmuir to entertain H. G. Wells.
From the NYT:
“People are coming with entire bags full of cash,” said Raymond Hau, general manager of the Sun Valley Golf Resort, which is building the 220 luxury villas. “I’ve seen this myself. A man had a bag and unzipped it. Boom. ‘Here’s the deposit,’ he said. ‘I want two apartments.’”
Mr. Hau shook his head. “It’s crazy. It can only happen in China.”
The golf resort is popular with the privileged. The president of Kazakhstan shot a hole in one here. And on a recent afternoon, when an attendant opened the passenger door of a black sport-utility vehicle that had just pulled up, a pile of large-denomination Chinese bills fluttered to the ground.
I note first we are willing to make distinctions as far as enhancement is concerned for athletes that we don’t make for soldiers (ref: Dexedrine use by Air Force pilots) or for students (who increasingly use performance enhancing substances like adderall and coffee).
Second, I note that there are possible invasion scenarios for which we face a shortage of soldiers with highly specialized physical abilities. I claim first that we have a natural pool of these kind of recruits in professional athletes and second that in doomsday invasion scenarios where there is a premium to be placed on the physical skills and endurance necessary to perform highly specialized tasks we want to have the ability to select for specific traits and want to absolutely maximize the expressions of those traits. Under these circumstances there is no counterargument for legalizing and using performance enhancers and indeed much depends on the state of the scientific knowledge base that we can access to inform those efforts.
That’s why we should legalize performance enhancers. There are several parameters that need to be set, for instance, the nature of the optimal regulatory framework, and how professional sports leagues should react to chances in these laws. But note that this policy carries a positive externality for athletes: it allows them access to the legal and scientific remedies that they don’t have access to in a world where they necessarily and exclusively bear the totality of the physical, emotional, and financial tolls that come with using illegal performance enhancers now.
I attended a lecture where Dr. Eduardo Bonilla-Silva (Duke) spoke on his concept of racial grammar. The following are my rough notes:
Discusses ‘Beauty and the Beast’ style misrepresentations and omissions of the media in terms of racial grammar. Specifically mentions cases where media shuns missing black girls and ccreates media circuses around missing white girls:
Many of our cultural storylines:
Cites CDC data from Tim Wise citing statistics that say white high schools students are seven times more likely than blacks to have used cocaine, twice as likely to binge drink and drive drunk, among other things. Claim: racial grammar is a tool to scapegoat blacks for the involvement and complicity of white people in these systems of crime.
Talks about oppressively white environments at colleges and universities, where the narrative of whiteness is so overwhelming that the culture and atmosphere remains unwelcoming and harsh. Talks about specific instances of racism towards black students on campuses.
Bonilla-Silva closed with some fragments from Langston Hughes’s poem, “Democracy“.
Generally speaking, the monuments that represent cities can be categorized as masculine phallic symbols. A quick list: Paris/Eiffel Tower, Seattle/Space Needle, Washington DC/Washington Monument, London/Tower of London, etc.
This is by and large true with one very unique exception: St. Louis. St. Louis is the only city that I know of that is represented by a monument that is a feminine sexual symbol: an Arch. The conceit also underlies the famous slogan: St. Louis, Gateway to the West.
HT: Dr. Barb Osburg
Edit: Here is the Liberty Memorial in KC, courtesy Sam Burnett.
Actually, I have a few thoughts. About Fight Club. And they aren’t about the book (which I have yet to read)
1. If you think that the lessons from Fight Club are in the vein of Marx and anti-capitalism, sure, there are some lessons there. But the really interesting connections are to the psychology of mass movements, a topic that invokes Eric Hoffer’s seminal work The True Believer: Thoughts on the Nature of Mass Movements.
2. Viewing Fight Club through a Dostoyevskian lens also yields many insights. Indeed, the main character’s psychological fragmentation is a core theme of the narrative through which the narrative itself is possible. Here is a brief summary of Dostoyevsky that those not familiar might find useful.
3. Heidegger’s insights on what he calls ‘techne‘ also have much to offer, though I find Heidegger only worth mentioning for his exposition on a few concepts and find other thinkers provide much more fruitful avenues for development.
The ubiquitous peanut M&M, incidentally:
Mr. Vernon, the renowned student of multinationals, was once employed by a multinational-in-the-making. In 1954 he went to work for Forrest Mars Sr., who built the Mars candy empire. Mr. Vernon was placed in charge of planning, finance and new products. He oversaw the development effort that led to chocolate-covered peanut M & M’s.
The new peanut variety was a success, and, in the candy industry, Mr. Vernon was called ”the man who put the crunch in M & M’s.”
The excerpt is from the New York Times obituary for Raymond Vernon, an eminent economist whose work is important in international trade. The full article is worth a read and contains much of interest.
From the abstract to “Virtual Worlds: A First Hand Account of Market and Society on the Cyberian Frontier“, a December 2001 paper by economist Edward Castranova, this gem:
In March 1999, a small number of Californians discovered a new world called “Norrath”, populated by an exotic but industrious people. About 12,000 people call this place their permanent home, although some 60,000 are
present there at any given time. The nominal hourly wage is about USD 3.42 per hour, and the labors of the people produce a GNP per capita somewhere between that of Russia and Bulgaria.
Norrath, for those not in the know, is the land where the online massive multiplayer online roleplaying game (MMORPG) Everquest take place. For reference, Bulgaria’s GNP per capita in 2000 was $5,560; Russia’s was $8010 (source, Bureau of the Census 2002, L/N). Castranova’s paper is currently the second most downloaded economics paper on SSRN.
Caught this line from the British Daily Mail in an article on the social networking service Twitter:
Twitter has decided to act after Tony La Russa, the coach of an obscure American baseball team, launched a legal action over a fake account. He claimed that postings in which he appeared to make light of the death of two of his players had been ‘hurtful’.
Obscure? Really? As a St. Louisan I am predictably skeptical.
VENICE (AFP) – “Lebanon” by Israeli Samuel Maoz, the story of the first Lebanon war told from inside an Israeli tank, won the Golden Lion at the Venice film festival Saturday.
Colin Firth, star of ‘s “A Single Man,” picked up the Volpi Cup for , while Russian actress Ksenia Rappoport won for her role in “La Doppia Ora.”
Highly enjoyed this Tarantino flick, particularly the pop culture references that Americans wouldn’t get (and I’m not sure I’ve got them all). Close to my heart is the tribute to Francoise Villon’s famed Ballade (of the Ladies of Ancient Times) that reads in part:
Prince, n’enquerez de sepmaine
Ou elles sont, ne de cest an,
Qu’a ce reffrain ne vous remaine:
Mais ou sont les neiges d’antan?
Prince, don’t ask me in a week
or in a year what place they are;
I can only give you this refrain:
Where are the snows of yesteryear?
Villon does not typically translate well but this one does better than most.