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veen  ·  6 hours ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Pubski: July 8, 2020

A good week on paper - finally got to see my sister's baby again. Handed in my revised manuscript. Canoed in the canals. But the line between work and life is fully blurred, and I don't feel like I've got the energy to deal with my responsibilities, despite how few there are.

Things are too vague, too uncertain, too unbounded right now and I'm having none of it.

veen  ·  6 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: "Kat returns to the office." Welcome to her COVID hell.

    We've been really good at fobbing risk off onto individuals through some perverse sense of social darwinism but it's fuckin' over

If this year doesn’t break American individualism forever I don’t know if anything can.

Pretty sure this was posted earlier but can’t find it anymore: “i don’t know how to make you care about other people”

veen  ·  7 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: "Kat returns to the office." Welcome to her COVID hell.

Someone I know on LinkedIn pitched the idea of "park offices" - you bike or walk to your own pleasant single-unit office with a view of the forest, or the park. You build a WeWork network of them and then give big corporations discount for letting every employee from that place go there. It was just an idea and I'm not sure the economics work out but sign me tf up, man.

That aside, this whole gestures broadly is turning out to be quite the reminder of how inequal the workforce is and the consequences are. White collar have it easy, man.

goobster  ·  2 days ago  ·  link  ·  

It's funny how much more dangerous the cubicle farm or open-plan office is nowadays, in comparison to a construction site, or place where physical laborers are working, right?

Weird times.

veen  ·  7 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: "Kat returns to the office." Welcome to her COVID hell.

I'm getting a hard login wall. What's the gist?

I have now had two normal office days. I'm trying to have one day every week or other week back at the office - solely because I prefer in person meetings and banter. Our office has a bunch of hygienic precautions, an upper limit of ~20 people inside, decent ventilation and spaciously separated desks. They close the office on Friday, which is when 80% of all internal meetings are, so there's no pressure to go to the office. Could be a lot worse if you ask me.

kleinbl00  ·  7 days ago  ·  link  ·  

    I'm getting a hard login wall. What's the gist?

veen  ·  10 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: The dirty secret behind Ben Shapiro's extraordinary success on Facebook

This is like a Trust Me, I'm Lying redux, more depressing, less clever and with an extra dose of politics and hate.

    It is important to understand that this study, and other observational analyses like it, onlyidentifycorrelations: these relationships are not necessarilycausal. That is, one cannot read thisstudy, or others like it, to imply that changing one of the variables in our model would changedeath rates; we can only say how the death rates and the variables analyzed move together. Wetake much care in stressing this throughout the note.

I feel like study 1 missed that memo - he jumps from 'we have a significant result of one of our 5 parameters, controlling for the rest' to 'so therefore PT is the driving cause', paying lip service to but not actually addressing the fact that there's a plethora of things that public transit use could be a proxy of.

So ignoring that one and focusing on the much better second study; it's interesting that it seems to be such a significant factor. I'd be very curious if these results could be repeated in non-US metropoles like Singapore or Tokyo.

You've been the one who pointed out to me that PT in the US is, effectively, poor people transport. So while I'm not surprised that PT increases risk, I'd also not be surprised if there's simply an unaccounted poverty variable that would explain most if not all of this correlation away.

kleinbl00  ·  10 days ago  ·  link  ·  

The bar for publicity for any given study has been dropping for a while, but when COVID hit it gutterballed.

We're also talking about economists giving their hot epidemiological takes; I don't know of any other profession that we would tolerate like that. If physicists decided to discuss anthropology there would be howling.

It's not entirely fair to discuss "public transit" in the United States as homogeneous, either. BART is useful. I hear NY's subway system is, too. I've found Portland's MAX to be handy to get around while my experience in three or four American cities is that the minute you invoke a bus, you're fukt. Still, I can see it being an easy trend to point at. The line where the mentally-ill homeless soil themselves and people hop on and off to sell headphones is unlikely to have the same level of sanitation where white yuppies take their kids to the Santa Monica Pier on Saturdays. More than that, all the buses around here now say "ESSENTIAL TRAVEL ONLY" on them, as if the people riding the bus to work in the middle of a pandemic needed a reminder of their uber-shitty social status.

'cuz I tell you what if you were riding into downtown on the Express in order to save on parking, you've been working remotely since March. And all them brown people you used to mentally express solidarity with don't even remember you anymore.

veen  ·  14 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Pubski: June 24, 2020

Helped my SO's parents move the other day. They live about 45 minutes drive away, and we're now in an electric car sharing programme and a public transport semi-lockdown so we reserved a car. There's a bunch of Renault Zoe's but there's also a few Model 3's and since I'd only driven a Model S as a test drive, I was eager to try it out.

I came to realize that Tesla fundamentally likes technology more than experience, whereas other high end electric cars have the opposite. And while I thought I did so too, and for example really like a bunch of software tricks the car has up its sleeve, the total package just isn't as good as it could be. It relies too much on the mega-ipad to get anything done - to open the fucking passenger seat box you need to dig around menus to find the software button. The steering wheel has two nipples and you're just left to figure out what every interaction does. There's nameless buttons in the software too, and there's no easy way to see your remaining range and power consumption. Or to do anything useful while driving other than what you can do by arousing the steering wheel.

In other news - I'm on track to hand in the revised, hopefully-final version of my peer reviewed academic paper in next week. A final proofread and i-dotting and we should be fit for print!

It's also mildly hot here. I realized early April that I'd go ravingly mad if I'd had to work from home in my non-AC'ed apartment in the summer, so I got a mobile unit. They're all marked up or sold out now, while I got it at a good discount. Yay foresight!

veen  ·  18 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Voting Age

I'd argue you have much bigger problems on your hands regarding giving everyone a fair chance at voting in the first place.

veen  ·  18 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: The world's largest airline by capacity is now... Southwest

You know, there was a BBC article a few weeks ago about new research on who was patient zero for Covid in the UK. The conclusion was that there was no single one, but likely hundreds if not thousands of tiny outbreaks, where only some of those spread far and wide. And they casually mentioned that for example just from Spain alone, each day up until Spain's lockdown 20,000 people filed to the UK.

I've got an 816 page thicc tome on the design of airports that I've read in my bookcase but facts like these are one of the very few ways to properly understand the immense scale of the airline industry. Southwest could still fly half of LA out with that amount of seats.

kleinbl00  ·  18 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Kinda seems like they should be public utilities, like railroads

ButterflyEffect  ·  18 days ago  ·  link  ·  

I’m sorry, did you say NATIONALIZE THE FUCK OUTTA THE AIRLINE INDUSTRY

kleinbl00  ·  18 days ago  ·  link  ·  

I'm into it. but then I'm reading whatsername's MMT book which is basically Laffer Curve Communism so I'm maybe crazy at the moment

b_b  ·  18 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Magic monetary theory

kleinbl00  ·  17 days ago  ·  link  ·  

There will be a 'bl00's review.

If you look up anyone's review of MMT you mostly get piss, vinegar and outrage. This is unfortunate, and fundamentally due to the fact that the people who review MMT disagree with its dogma, not its construction. Dogma be damned, the justifications, arguments and construction of MMT are fucking phantasms.

I'm finishing this book mostly so I can be a dick to people about MMT.

thenewgreen  ·  16 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Please do write the review of anything to do with the laffer curve. If you've already done so, please share. My conservative uncle keeps throwing it in my face like it's proven theory. The "gravity" of economic policy.

kleinbl00  ·  16 days ago  ·  link  ·  

You would likely enjoy the writings of Ken Galbraith. He was a clever guy and a pithy writer. That "known unknowns" quote we blame on Rumsfeld started life as

    “There are two kinds of forecasters: those who don’t know, and those who don’t know they don’t know.”

...when talking about the Federal Reserve in The Great Crash. Here's what he had to say about the Laffer Curve:

    “If you feed enough oats to the horse, some will pass through to feed the sparrows."
b_b  ·  17 days ago  ·  link  ·  

I don't know too much about the subject, but what I've read ranges from "printing money while interest rates are low isn't new" to "these people don't believe in math."

kleinbl00  ·  16 days ago  ·  link  ·  

It's an argument of cause and effect where cause is "whatever, I do what I want" and effect is "lalalalalalanotlistening".

veen  ·  19 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Pubski: June 17, 2020

The conversation that led to that was something like this:

"so we were gonna do a two page spread with you meeting the person living there, but that guy didn't want to cooperate. Can you go there at 1pm and bring something to show, like your calculation on something?"

"uh that's not really possible but I can bring some stuff for the photographer to work with, like rulers n shit. Or is that too cheesy?"

"no not at all! People love cheesy."

I was thinking of creating a cross on the pavement, but the photographer wanted some depth so he came up with this. It makes little to no sense but it's a fun picture.

veen  ·  20 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Pubski: June 17, 2020

https://www.ad.nl/utrecht/dit-adres-is-het-exacte-middelpunt-van-utrecht-en-anne-26-legt-uit-hoe-je-dat-bepaalt~a3e9dd72/

I tried throwing the page into Google Translate, but that doesn't work because of cookie settings. But it's very simple Dutch so it shouldn't be too hard to get the gist.

veen  ·  21 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Pubski: June 17, 2020

I posted a map on Twitter yesterday, and now I'm gonna be in the local newspaper tomorrow! Huzzah. I calculated the centroid of all the households in my city over time to see how the population shifts, and apparently that's fun enough to feature there. Including a photo op where I push measuring tape on the street because how on earth are you otherwise gonna make a tidbit of data analysis into a photo. Cheesy af but who cares, it was fun to do.

Went to the office yesterday for the first time since mid-February. The numbers are going pretty good over here - we're at less than 5 hospitalizations per day for the past weeks. So slowly and steadily. It was good to go back there. Today I took the day off, so it feels like Saturday to me. I have as much paid off days left as there are weeks in the year, so I'm planning to work less and am starting that with taking Wednesdays or Thursdays off. Love it so far.

flagamuffin  ·  19 days ago  ·  link  ·  

you are measuring the hell out of that stretch of pavement!

veen  ·  19 days ago  ·  link  ·  

The conversation that led to that was something like this:

"so we were gonna do a two page spread with you meeting the person living there, but that guy didn't want to cooperate. Can you go there at 1pm and bring something to show, like your calculation on something?"

"uh that's not really possible but I can bring some stuff for the photographer to work with, like rulers n shit. Or is that too cheesy?"

"no not at all! People love cheesy."

I was thinking of creating a cross on the pavement, but the photographer wanted some depth so he came up with this. It makes little to no sense but it's a fun picture.

b_b  ·  21 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Share when it comes out!

veen  ·  20 days ago  ·  link  ·  

https://www.ad.nl/utrecht/dit-adres-is-het-exacte-middelpunt-van-utrecht-en-anne-26-legt-uit-hoe-je-dat-bepaalt~a3e9dd72/

I tried throwing the page into Google Translate, but that doesn't work because of cookie settings. But it's very simple Dutch so it shouldn't be too hard to get the gist.

veen  ·  22 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Jon Stewart Is Back to Weigh In

Commenting partly in the hope that more people read this.

My gut reaction to this article is something akin to yass gurl but I'm genuinley curious if you guys recognize your country in this. He gets at a few fundamental criticisms; racial segregation, governmental incompetence and corruptness, dysfunctional media, etc.

Is he simplifying things too much, or simply speaking the quiet parts out loud?

Odder  ·  22 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Honestly Jon Stewart kinda seems like a loser here - I think he's somewhat of a poster boy for ineffective activism. He got 200,000 people out to DC ten years for a rally to do... absolutely nothing. It took him 9 years and quitting his job at the daily show to get a bill funding medical care for 9/11 first responders. And his show in general pivoted more towards laughing at the state of the world rather than doing anything about any of the problems he covered. Hell, I remember in the mid-2000s that "Daily Show viewers" was basically the weasel-word political demographic that "redditors" is now - embodying young, upper-middle class educated whites with low political involvement but generally moderately left-leaning views. Basically the same as "Bernie-bros."

My general take on Stewart is he's the kind of guy who would encourage or glorify spending your whole life campaigning to have a single racist statue taken down rather than getting a mob and pushing it in the harbor. He's an advocate for social change but not overall quick social change because that's scary and unpredictable and as someone who is insulated from any direct consequences of social problems he can afford to wait for the slow arc of history to bend toward liberalism. In a sense it's really frustrating to read or watch anything he says because although he usually "gets it" about what's wrong with the world he generally doesn't ever present issues in a way where anyone can imagine solutions to those problems.

mk  ·  22 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Hey I was at the rally. Were you?

I sympathize with the criticism, but think his approach is informed by traditional journalism. My guess is that Jon sees it as his duty to shine a light on an issue, rather than be the one to resolve it. However, I think the ground changed during his watch. The issues he started highlighting at the outset of the Today Show (which he ingeniously transformed from celebrity gossip) became commonplace as political tribalism and propaganda became the norm.

Odder  ·  22 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Nah I was a bit young for that in 2010 and once Stewart and Colbert combined their rallies it became clear it was going to be more of an entertainment piece than a rally so I wasn't about to beg my parents to let me go. That was actually a large factor in why I stopped watching the Daily Show - it seemed more like a farce after that.

I think Jon Stewart got a lot of things wrong around that time, though he wasn't the only one. There was a narrative he was putting forward that the growing political divisions in America were caused by the media itself being extremist, which is a very self-centered position for a media person to take. I think it was a mistake a lot of us made, though - we all vastly underestimated the extent to which the media was preying and capitalizing on existing political, economic, and racial divisions in this country, rather than creating them.

Between welfare cuts, NAFTA, tax cuts eroding budgets, and the 2008 economic crisis there were a lot of opportunities for people to develop more extreme political views, either distrust of government, distrust of large corporations, or distrust of both - all of which tend to pull people away from the center, and given America's history of suppression of leftism starting in the 50's and 60's, that tended overall to pull Americans to the right. Campaigning to change the media's language around these issues proved ineffective because it didn't address the reasons why extremist media resonated with so many Americans - lack of control, stress, racial tensions, etc.

I think that's also an example of why what Jon Stewart did (highlighting issues instead of proposing solutions) was overall ineffective or even made issues worse. When you present issues in a non-solution-oriented, non-empathetic way, it is very easy for your audience to draw conclusions about the causes of those issues that blame everyday people for being bad and corrupt and stupid rather than subject to external forces that make them bitter, distrustful, and short-sighted. Which is, in its way, a passive form of extremist media - I think if you're saying "look at these people acting like idiots" enough your audience stops thinking of them as people acting and starts thinking of them as idiots.

b_b  ·  22 days ago  ·  link  ·  

I think his analogy of police as border patrol between the segregated Americas is pretty spot on. I've tried to argue that the police are now if a symptom than a cause, and I've never really found the right words to express that.

I tend to also believe that media generally and social media in particular have stoked resentment between us to their benefit and our detriment. I have lots of conservative friends, and we get along great, but every now and then one of us will say something that is just completely alien to the other sounds we basically live in different information environments. Really strange and not at all helpful how our "marketplace of ideas" has differentiated over the years. I think Jon is spot on with his media analysis.

But also thanks for commenting. I also hope now people will read this.

Also doesn't work for me anymore! Dangit.

c_hawkthorne  ·  22 days ago  ·  link  ·