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Trombone  ·  19 hours ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Why does Mount Rushmore Exist?

This was offputting. It drips with disdain. I understand that he's trying to make a political point, but way to do that by being an arrogant tool to the entire state of South Dakota. The best compliment he can come up with in the whole thing is "It was as beautiful as any land I’ve ever seen". That's the compliment equivalent of "meh" while looking down your nose. I've been to South Dakota, and yeah, Mt. Rushmore is kind of strange. "The hubris of man" and all. But? Custer's a great little town, and it's an excellent base of operations to see the state. There's more than a freakin' Pizza Hut there. Try out Wall Drug. Custer SP is quite beautiful. There's Pipestone. There's Badlands. There's Teddy Roosevelt NP. South Dakota is a treasure trove of nature's wonders. Instead of appreciating any of this, our narrator tosses his backhanded compliment out and spills more words talking about the local fauna come begging to lick the salt off his car. Does he ever mention another human being outside of his family unit? Is he that self-absorbed?

If I was to give Mr. Anderson some polite advice, I'd say:

- Go on your trip in season, because things will be open.

- If you want to actually see things, do some research and take some time to get out of your car and take a hike.

- Put down your electronics, and please make your kids do the same. If they're unshackled from their screens for a while, they might actually look around them, and appreciate it. They should understand how fortunate they are to be able to go on such a trip to such a beautiful area of the country. If all they do is Snapchat, you've wasted all your money getting them there.

- Check your preconceptions at the door and talk to people.

flac  ·  1 day ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Unerased: Counting Transgender Lives

Congratulations! You've shown that you care enough about human life that you started a homicide statistic with "lol"! You definitely seem like you do give your time supplying food to the homeless, or volunteering on a suicide hotline, and don't just use the excuse of "this isn't an issue that directly affects me" to avoid actually helping anybody not related to you by blood.

I'm sorry that not enough trans people are dying to warrant your empathy - let's hope it stays that way.

Tell me, how are you fighting the Opioid epidemic in America? What are some concrete steps I, as a citizen, can take to stop the deaths of 33,000 of my peers? I certainly don't know anyone who is addicted to prescription pills, so by your reasoning I have no reason to care about it - that's just not something which affects me. I do know a young trans woman who was beaten to within an inch of her life in an alley, but hey, my number's smaller than yours, I should care about your thing instead - fuck her statistically insignificant life!

See, here's the thing about proportions: they tend to point to something larger than themselves. If you actually did give your time to helping the homeless, you would find that between 10-20 of those 50 people might be gay or trans (and before you have a chance - I know I linked to a liberal rag and you are going to debate the numbers, I don't particularly have the energy to find better sources) - a number which is disproportionately high. Or if you actually spent your time with opium addicts, you would find that, again, a disproportionately high amount of them are gay or trans. And do I even have to tell you how many gay and trans people would be calling you on that suicide hotline?

I get it, you don't know any trans people, but some of us do. Some of us may even want to start a family with the trans man they've been dating for 5 years - a thing that becomes significantly harder if he's dead. I completely agree that there is a finite amount of energy that we can all channel to causes that we deem to be important - I just hope that you're channeling yours towards something bigger than complaining about people mourning the dead.

EDIT: I'm sorry that this is pretty aggressive, I don't mean it as a personal attack - in all seriousness, I have no doubts that you are a good person, and I get where you are coming from. This is just an issue that hits really close to home.

kantos  ·  3 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: The beginning of the end? Reddit introduces profile pages

kleinbl00  ·  13 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Why I think the tech interview process is broken – Medium

Speaking as a twice-optioned screenwriter with an engineering degree, the divide is this:

The mathematically inclined - STEM-heads - know what something is. They function on the quantifiable and defendable. Their sphere of comfort is one in which data and facts and evidence hold the greatest sway.

The romantically inclined - liberal arts majors - know what something should be. They function on the desirable and intuitable. Their sphere of comfort is one in which concensus and persuasion allow us to achieve great things.

An engineer understands that the engines canna take much more of this, captain. The speed of light in a vacuum is an absolute. You can't fit ten pounds of shit in a five pound bag. And they also know that all the hope in the world won't change that.

A poet understands that dammit, Scotty, we're counting on you. Laws are meant to be broken. You can be all that and a bag of chips. And they know that the bumblebee flies anyway.

We cannot function as a society without both aspects. We cannot function as humans without both aspects. HOWEVER

- Human Resources departments are never crewed by engineers.

- Boardrooms have few engineers in them.

- Lawyers are rarely engineers.

The tribe is led by liberal arts twits. They'd lead us all into the wasteland without people who understand double-blind testing but they'd still lead us there because your average stem-head generally believes that people should follow the evidence, not the leader.

But we don't.

It's an unfair stereotype to say that sciences majors are incapable of relating to liberal arts majors. However, it's an accurate stereotype to say that sciences majors do not relate to liberal arts majors as well as liberal arts majors relate to themselves, and it's fair to say that STEM-heads benefit from learning to meet the liberal arts majors where they live, if for no other reason than the parties tend to be less awkward.

That said, it's drearily routine for any liberal arts class inflicted on STEM majors to be seen as "humanizing" but any science class inflicted on liberal arts majors to be "degrading." "When am I ever going to use algebra again?" "How is the ideal gas law at all relevant to my future as a corporate raider?" "zeroth law? Can't you nerds even count to three?"

The STEM guys are far more likely to have a job, though.

Devac  ·  13 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Why I think the tech interview process is broken – Medium

I have a feeling that this is going to be one of those posts of mine that will ruffle some feathers. Let's make one thing clear: I've tried to put aside my own bias, pretty much failed at it but I am leaving it to show where I'm coming from. I'm only interested in the answer. That's it. It's not intended to be personal. Cool? Thanks.

    He came into the program as a multi-dimensional, highly skilled and multi-talented human being. I can't take any credit.

and this thing from IRC on the 20th November 2016:

    22:32 < lilski> I said earlier that I teach computer science students - but I basically teach them how to be human beings

What does it actually mean? Sorry for being peevish about it, but as someone who is focused on hard sciences and getting patronising treatment from most humanities-oriented people around me ever since I can remember, I can't help but resent some of this attitude (don't blame me, blame multiple people who told me verbatim that I must lack a soul to not appreciate some poem or picture :/). I've read a lot of your posts, many of the ones you've posted before I found Hubski and ones posted since then, but I'm at loss about what you actually do in class. What is the thing that your students lack and how does acquiring it make them into 'human beings'? What's about your students that your aim is to make them into those 'multidimensional human beings'? Sorry, but I simply loathe when in my own life the, supposedly, attuned to humanity people just throw me into some easy 'cog-head' category and go forth with their pre-existing assumption. I'm not angry or resentful specifically toward you, lil, but I'm asking because so far you have proven that you will not just dismiss my questions outright with something along the lines of "you will not understand, untermensh".

Aside from that, I agree with Odder. I had only one such interview so far and it was just… baffling. The guy who was interviewing me seemed to be thrown out of the loop when I didn't answer with some cliche line from a tutorial on interviews. Suffices to say that I ended up working in a bookstore as a clerk afterwards.

flagamuffin  ·  1 day ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Piketty’s Crumbs
lil  ·  13 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Why I think the tech interview process is broken – Medium

    I have a feeling that this is going to be one of those posts of mine that will ruffle some feathers.
Not at all. Thank you for writing. In fact, your letter made me immediately realize how I appear to some people.

    He came into the program as a multi-dimensional, highly skilled and multi-talented human being. I can't take any credit. and this thing from IRC on the 20th November 2016:

    22:32 < lilski> I said earlier that I teach computer science students - but I basically teach them how to be human beings

First of all, what does it mean to be a human being, let alone teach someone to be one? I will make more of an effort to describe what I do because my flippant shorthand sounds stupid and arrogant.

When the usual response from people is a sad nod, and "Good idea," I am only reinforcing negative stereotypes -- and like all stereotypes, they can potentially lead to prejudice.

    Sorry for being peevish about it, but as someone who is focused on hard sciences and getting patronising treatment from most humanities-oriented people around me ever since I can remember, I can't help but resent some of this attitude (don't blame me, blame multiple people who told me verbatim that I must lack a soul to not appreciate some poem or picture :/).
and not appreciating some arty thing doesn't make you any less human.

    but I'm at loss about what you actually do in class.
I focus on interpersonal communication skills, particularly listening to others; listening to what they say and don't say; examining our own reactions to stress, conflict, and confusion; understanding that what we see and perceive and interpret might be different from others who are with us; examining how, like it or not, our emotions are the engines of our lives and often objectivity is subjective. In addition, public speaking classes are all about connecting with others not talking at them.

    What is the thing that your students lack
My current students don't particularly lack anything more than any other group. We all struggle with communication and connection.

    and how does acquiring it make them into 'human beings'?
I regret ever using that phrase, but I will say this: the students often tell me that the class asked them to engage in new thoughtful self-reflection, that they have changed the way they relate to others, and that they feel more in control of their lives. That's not being a human being, but it's something.

    What's about your students that your aim is to make them into those 'multidimensional human beings'?
I want them to be happier and more effective. I want their teamwork to be more successful. I want them to understand their unintended contribution to their own problems. I'm grateful to have a chance to work in an area that seems meaningful to me and seems helpful. I hate coming across as arrogant. I imagine I will share this thread with my students. That will be an interesting conversation.

    Sorry, but I simply loathe when in my own life the, supposedly, attuned to humanity people just throw me into some easy 'cog-head' category and go forth with their pre-existing assumption.
Have you challenged their preconceived notions? What did they say? What evidence did they have?

    I'm not angry or resentful specifically toward you, lil, but I'm asking because so far you have proven that you will not just dismiss my questions outright with something along the lines of "you will not understand, untermensh".
I hope I have responded non-dismissively.
francopoli  ·  11 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Sci-Fi club no. 29: Cowboy Bebop Discussion

The recent half of the family came over to get the hell out of Ireland when the Brits starved people intentionally, then sort-of intentionally, sort of accidentally started a religious civil war. According to the family bible, they stayed with black families that introduced them to Jewish people before they noped-the-hell-out of NYC and Boston in the 1830's. They ended up in Philly just in time to realize they had to go west. They kept a list of names of people that helped them out along the way and ended up mining in the Rocky Mountains when the Civil War started.

The father of one of the families notes in the margins of Romans 14 and not sure why this stuck with me, but in shaky pen was written: Hebrew fed me beef. First in my years eating flesh of cattle.

The older men in the group had to be in their 40's when they came over, so this was a 50ish year old man writing this statement. I wonder how many more Irish immigrants never ate cow/beef until they came to the US and started working here.

snoodog  ·  24 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Pubski: March 1, 2017

The baby came yesterday morning four and a half lbs. tiny little thing. Taking care of her while wife takes short 2 hr naps between feeding. Baby care is hard

kleinbl00  ·  23 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: 5 Ways To Stay Sane In An Era Of Non-Stop Outrage

I am slowly coming to the conclusion that if David Wong had started at Vanity Fair instead of Cracked, he'd be Hunter S. Thompson by now.

How half of America lost its fucking mind

The Monkeysphere

b_b  ·  32 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: David Brooks finds a way to blame the children

This is a classic lolbrooks, observing the problem and blaming the victim.

I think I'm the last person left in America who thinks that our problems are not all that hard to solve. The majority of our economic struggles correlate very closely with banking deregulation and tax policy changes, both of which have redistributed money upward.

To be entrepreneurial requires dynamism. Much like combustion requiring both fuel and oxygen, starting a business requires people (fuel) and money (oxygen). The banks have no incentive to create easy money for businesses, because they can make a fuckload doing dumb shit like using your deposit to buy securitzed debt. So business owners have to go to venture capitalists for money, and for those of you who don't know what a venture capitalist is, it's what you call a loan shark who wears really expensive suits and has friends in Congress.

People, being immutable in their desire for a better life, will always be entrepreneurial, if we let them. This is just as true today as it was when someone invented the wheel. When the number of people doing this decreases dramatically, we can ask, as Brooke does, "What's the matter with people?" (Who haven't changed in millenia until, according to Brooks, 1985.) Or we can ask, as we should, "What's the matter with the current climate?"

Policy changes that once again deny banks the ability to gamble with deposits, and tax changes that encourage investments in small business would break this cycle tomorrow. As long as it's more profitable for banks to make risky bets on financial instruments that don't actually correlate to anything manufactured or any real service rendered, then they are going to continue to do that.

lil  ·  25 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Still homeless. But I just had one the greatest days of my life

I've been broken. I've been healed by the transformative power of love, the possibility of hope even in a dark time.

Another thing that strikes me about your story is the sudden transition from darkness to possibility. That's how it happens. One minute you're on a bridge: the next you're finding a sense of Oneness with another sentient being.

Finally all through your journey, the highs and the lows, you've understood this: Stories happen to those who can tell them. I always felt that even during your saddest times, you had a sense of the narrative possibilities, so you crafted a story out of the darkness and shared it with us out here in the Hubskiverse. Sharing it helps you carry it a little more lightly.

kleinbl00  ·  25 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: If life was fair would it still be interesting?

There will always be someone better off than you, there will always be someone worse off. For me, the goal is to always be better off than that guy I was last year.

OftenBen  ·  45 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Pubski: February 8, 2017

Of the two full-time projects that pay my salary: One is wrapping up and while there is some ongoing data collection, it's done paying out. The other is closing enrollment and is reducing in scale of time commitment dramatically. If I pursued no other projects, I'd be down to part-time come April or so.

BUT

I have been pursuing other things, with vigor. One research study ends? I'll start my own! The pilot program is expected to launch in May, assuming no hiccoughs with IRB. If the pilot data validates my feasibility tool, we're going to be applying for a grant to make it a multi-site study, possibly international if I can leverage my contacts in Rio, Copenhagen, London and/or Rome. This job is reducing from full time? I'll apply for a new one, at the suggestion of my bosses and with their full backing. If I'm accepted, I'll be directing clinical research operations for all of pediatric cardiology. Feelin' like a super badass, gotta admit. The hard work is finally starting to pay off.

My robust pleasure source and I keep finding excuses to spend the night together.

'Your house is closer to the hospital!'

'Your apartment is closer to my appointment on saturday'

'I'm worried my heat is going to go out and you're really warm.'

She's meeting my friends in two weekends, we're taking a short trip across the state for a concert.

Friday night I'm performing Beethoven's 9th with the Budapest Festival Orchestra under the direction of one of their founders, Ivan Fischer. We've been working on it for months and my German diction has never sounded better.

Thank you all, for everything.

Small edit, I've also lost a ton of weight in the past 3 weeks with no change in diet or exercise. I ate pizza yesterday and stepped on the scale this morning and it read 167.

kleinbl00  ·  66 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Pubski: January 18, 2017x 2

a year in the life.

We had our first class in there last night. Coats were hung on coat hooks I had hung five minutes previously. The person running the class had my phone number for two days to coordinate everything she might need; instead she showed up half an hour after she said she would and expected I could make it all work. And I did. But it's galling - "Yeah, I've never been here before, or met you before, and the last time my organization stopped by the sheetrock had just gone up I'm sure you can make my three hours of powerpoint and Youtube videos work just fine, especially if I give you half an hour, despite the fact that I've been forewarned the internet is spotty I'm sure you can work it out."

And then my wife showed up and then I took the kid home and then she got home at eleven. I'm on my 3rd or 4th 10-11-12 hour day on this fucker. Monday night was two hours naked knee-deep in lukewarm water scraping blue protectant off a tub. Yesterday, on the other, was easier... but I discovered that the tub they were 3 weeks late in delivering (thereby setting us back 3 weeks) is a factory 2nd with a massive chip in it that will spread if I can't get it fixed. So that made me happy.

The difficulty is the minute that class got there, it was abundantly clear that I don't belong. Nobody in the birth community says "husband" because it's offensive. We're all "partners." And we're all "supportive" and we're all expected to get out of the way so they can focus on women's mysteries. Except during the birth where the philosophy is basically "thou art thy partner's bitch who is suffering more than you can ever know to bring about the miracle of life you're lucky we let you in the room worm now help your master breathe!"

So what I'm left with is I've spent like three years building a business in an industry actively hostile to my gender, that will never have anything to do with me, and which resents my participation. I am a fish building an airplane. It's a fuckin' P-51 Mustang to be sure but I still got gills, you know? The only thing I get out of it is gratitude from my wife, and despite spending the better part of two days cleaning and tidying and polishing that place I was denied any reaction from her last night because god forbid we speak too loudly to interrupt the class.

I realized yesterday that while I've been maintaining social media channels for two years and organizing ad campaigns and infographics and all the rest, I've never once mentioned the birth center on my own Facebook page.

This is really the only place I talk about it.

That probably says something.

kleinbl00  ·  54 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: 0 of 38 members of the Texas congressional delegation support the border wall

Trump is not the government. Trump is a part of the government - and a very powerful, very important part of the government at that. But the rest of the government has spent much of their adult lives becoming as powerful and important as they can possibly be and there's only so much to go around.

There are very few people in the government who desire a radical, disruptive change to the American way of life. All of them would like things to be more their way than the other guys' way, for sure... but you don't generally get involved in government unless you relish the grinding of sausage. Governance is a process-oriented profession. It is a life-long, avocational application of nuance. The goal is to get what you want, deny your opponents what you don't, and live to fight another day.

The Trump administration (still hard to say that) is governing as if they expect the world to end next week. They're blasting through everything they can. They're riding roughshod over everyone who stands in their way to make as much leeway as possible before they get mired in the mud.

Let's pretend you're Paul Ryan. You've been in Congress eighteen years - nine terms. You've built coalitions, relationships, alliances, non-aggression pacts and vendettas. You've put up with Democratic bullshit since Clinton was President and here you are, Speaker for the House.

And the President is acting like you aren't there.

And it's not like he's an ally. He's the guy that you couldn't publicly decry because apparently this is what we're doing now. And it would be righteous to have the House, the Senate and the Executive but apparently the Executive belongs to - wait for it - Breitbart. There are literally bloggers with more power than you.

How long are you going to take that?

How long are your friends going to take that?

Here's the thing: the gerrymandering has worked really damn well. You'll own the House for the next twenty years. After this dumpster fire, the Democrats will win the presidency. At least, you certainly have to consider the strong possibility that whatever follows, it's not gonna look great on the Republicans.

...unless you take a principled stand to check the power of the Executive in the name of stability, equality, and serving all Americans.

The Dems will go along with it no problem. Everyone that isn't Tea Party will go along with it no problem. You're kicking the shit out of any future Democratic president and ensuring that whoever runs on the Republican side next time, he'll be a Company man toeing the Company line.

Never attribute to malice that which is more easily explained by incompetence.

-Napoleon et. al.

We've seen plenty of evidence that the Republican Party doesn't know what to do with this dumpster fire. For the Democrats, it's easy: protest or be pilloried. For the Republicans, you're theoretically getting everything you want... along with a bunch of stuff you don't want... all at once, and with no real organization, and delivered to you as if you were on a not-very-good Reality TV show. But at some point you start looking long-term and you recognize that either they're going to take you down with them or you need to check the runaway excesses of an unprincipled Executive branch.

Trump is entirely too cozy with Russia. Russia helped get him elected. He's your guy, sure. But guys change. And who's calling the shots here?

Multiply times 248 for the House and 54 for the Senate. The Trump agenda may be closer to the Republican agenda than the Democratic agenda, but it's still the Trump agenda. And everybody who signed on enthusiastically before the election? They're cabinet members now.

Oy, Democracy Now(!). I love Glenn Greenwald, but this is super disingenuous.

    And yet, all I heard from Democrats—not all I heard, because there were a lot of Democrats who supported Manning and Snowden and Drake—but certainly Democratic officials in D.C. were almost unanimous, under Obama, in saying that leaks—leakers should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law, that they’re traitors.

There's the rub. Conflating "Democratic Officials in D.C." who were "almost unanimous under Obama" with the unspecified "Democrats" in the title is misleading at best, and dumps the burden of hypocrisy on Democrats in general. You know who else was "almost unanimous" in condemning Manning and Snowden? Republican officials in D.C. under Obama. The Manning and Snowden leaks didn't uncover partisan divide so much as they uncovered a philosophical- and frankly totally predictable- difference between those in power and/or who stand at any point to gain power and those who just want to talk on their goddamn iPhone in peace. Snowden and Manning, to varying degrees, uncovered infrastructural mechanisms for abuse that could be used by anybody in power to bad effect; accordingly, pretty much everybody with their hands closest to the levers- Democrat and Republican- cried foul.

Meanwhile, I know next to nobody in my everyday life- Democrat, Republican or Other- who believed that what Snowden did was bad. Okay, let's be honest, I know a few conservatives that still think it. Illegal? Sure, because it was. That's the nature of civil disobedience. But the general consensus on the street is that Snowden did the necessary, and that Manning's actions, although very carelessly executed, didn't merit the sentence. NB- Manning was put in jail by a Democrat, but released by that selfsame Democrat.

So it drives me crazy- fucking. crazy. to read Democracy Now(!) articles that try to paint Democrats in general as somehow hypocritical because of the above. Mainly because then all my militant liberal Facebook acquaintances, still inexplicably bitter at Hillary Clinton and her perceived misdeeds, wallpaper my feed the next day with articles like this as their next gem of evidence that the current Democratic wing is corrupt and hypocritical because Bernie.

This is not that. Everybody in power hated what Snowden did, and a plurality if not a majority of those not in power celebrated what he did. Meanwhile, the current situation has underscored not systemic problems that need to be corrected for the good of the whole electorate, but a very current, temporary administration running roughshod over the systemic safeguards meant to uphold the good of the electorate. Basic conflict of interest regulations? Naw, we're not gonna pay attention to that. Private citizen undermining current presidential policies via back channels to international rivals? See no problem there.

If leaks are how these things come to light, I as a Democrat- and a citizen- applaud them just as I applauded Snowden. That's in full recognition of the fact that such leaks are illegal.

The only thing that surprises me at this point is that rogue actors in the intelligence community up to now have (openly) broken the rules only to uncover abuses of power rather than to perpetuate them. Who would have thought that safeguards to civil liberty would have arisen with such regularity from the agencies who enjoy the highest abuse potential.