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Ocean
03-11-2011, 09:13 AM
Articles that are interesting and don't seem to belong anywhere else.

Recognizing the unconscious mind: credit where credit is due. (http://www.nytimes.com/2011/03/08/opinion/08brooks.html?_r=1&src=me&ref=homepage)

bjkeefe
03-11-2011, 11:18 AM
Articles that are interesting and don't seem to belong anywhere else.

Good idea for a thread.

bjkeefe
03-12-2011, 02:05 AM
A short series of Monkey Cage posts on attitudes about AGW and evolution, separated by political self-identification (http://www.themonkeycage.org/2011/03/you_want_more_epistemic_closur.html).

The gist: the more education self-identified liberals have, the more likely they are to accept the scientific consensus on AGW. The more education self-identified conservatives have, the more likely they are to deny it.

The US is unique in this regard among all countries surveyed.

On evolution: more education among libs = more likely to believe the theory of evolution. Among cons, not so much.

(h/t: DougJ (http://www.balloon-juice.com/2011/03/11/conservatives-and-evolution/))

bjkeefe
03-13-2011, 07:56 PM
... by Jim Henley (http://highclearing.com/index.php/archives/2011/03/13/12649):

I’ve been wrong about many things in years of blogging, but right about a few. In particular, I long maintained that there are no important fault lines within the Republican/conservative coalition. That different factions have some issue preferences at odds with each other doesn’t herald a “conservative crackup (http://www.google.com/search?aq=f&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8&q=conservative+crackup).” Once you take preference intensity into account, any “incoherence” in the right-wing coalition vanishes. America’s ruling elite comprises executives in the FIRE and energy sectors, military contractors, the active-duty brass and the leaders of socially conservative megachurches. There is at most one political dispute among these factions that matters, and indeed quite a bit of overlap.

Its institutional infrastructure is those magachurches, law-enforcement and corrections-employee associations, the current Tea-Party organizations, veterans organizations and trade associations like the US Chamber of Commerce and its local equivalents. There is at most one significant political dispute among these factions, and indeed quite a bit of overlap. Its activist base is (almost exclusively white) business owners and professionals, recipients of agricultural subsidies, active evangelicals and, recently, exurban retirees. There is at most one significant political dispute among these factions, and indeed quite a bit of overlap.

The one signficant dispute has nothing to do with civil liberties or the rule of law or drug prohibition or national security. It’s not wealth distribution or social issues like abortion or gay rights. You’ll find some people and groups in the ruling coalition with views on any of the above that dissent from Republican orthodoxy (which is the American ruling orthodoxy). But you won’t find any material dissent on those issues that rises to the level of deal-breaking. The stereotypical “economically conservative but socially liberal” businessman, to the extent he still exists, may disagree with his coalition partners about gay rights in the abstract, but his practical preference intensity is on his tax bill and regulatory sway. The cosmopolitan neocon who used to be a Trotskyite way back there somewhere may not burn to repeal Great Society economic programs, but what he cares about is American international hegemony, and if the price of that is going along with right-wing economics and fundamentalist social policies, so be it. Besides, his Trotskyite days were decades ago, and he’s since reared a brood of much more conventionally right-wing children, and gotten them good jobs in the conservative apparat. The economically precarious churchgoer is theoretically ripe for a message of left-wing economic populism, but his real concern is what penises go into and the two-way traffic through American vaginas. American flag officers manage a massive multi-ethnic organization of men and women, and, in practice, have to work constructively with at least some elements of diverse local cultures around the globe. But they are also mostly white, mostly male, substantially of conservative Christian background and sympathy, whose natural post-service career paths point toward munitions manufacturers, beltway bandits and private military contractors.

In real life as opposed to media schema, neocons and evangelicals largely hold conservative economic views, businessmen are political nationalists, active-duty officers and Pentagon contractors are social conservatives. And all of them are very, very white.

The one significant issue is ...

Can you guess?

bjkeefe
03-17-2011, 04:35 AM
A good piece recounting the development over the past three decades of this most important of mindsets on the right and in the Republican Party, from Jon Chait in the latest issue of Democracy (http://www.democracyjournal.org/20/the-triumph-of-taxophobia.php?page=all).

bjkeefe
03-18-2011, 09:46 PM
A good piece recounting the development over the past three decades of this most important of mindsets on the right and in the Republican Party, from Jon Chait in the latest issue of Democracy (http://www.democracyjournal.org/20/the-triumph-of-taxophobia.php?page=all).

Paul Campos (http://www.lawyersgunsmoneyblog.com/2011/03/the-future-of-an-illusion) reacts:

The Future of an Illusion

Jon Chait has a great new piece on the historical sources, hidden motivations, and overall incoherence of the contemporary GOP’s anti-tax dogma.

One implicit feature of Chait’s analysis is that it throws light on the extent to which “the Left” in America now means something like “people who think massive increases in wealth inequality are actually undesirable.”

johnmarzan
03-18-2011, 11:53 PM
Dem Congressman: Defund FOXNEWS!

http://www.breitbart.tv/dem-rep-defund-fox-news/?utm_medium=twitter&utm_source=twitterfeed

bjkeefe
03-19-2011, 12:45 AM
Dem Congressman: Defund FOXNEWS!

http://www.breitbart.tv/dem-rep-defund-fox-news/?utm_medium=twitter&utm_source=twitterfeed

Bedwetters are go! (http://www.google.com/search?q=take+away+federal+advertising+dollars+fro m+Fox+News)

bjkeefe
03-19-2011, 02:07 AM
Occasional B'head Massimo Pigliucci goes on a righteous rant (http://rationallyspeaking.blogspot.com/2011/03/political-fantasies-and-republican-war.html). Interesting twist: the parallels between his previous home country, Italy, and this one.

Ocean
03-19-2011, 08:31 AM
Occasional B'head Massimo Pigliucci goes on a righteous rant (http://rationallyspeaking.blogspot.com/2011/03/political-fantasies-and-republican-war.html). Interesting twist: the parallels between his previous home country, Italy, and this one.

Good article.

bjkeefe
03-20-2011, 01:48 AM
Paul Krugman encourages you (http://krugman.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/03/19/heroes-as-villains-the-case-of-elizabeth-warren/) to read a fine piece by Joe Nocera (http://www.nytimes.com/2011/03/19/business/economy/19nocera.html?pagewanted=all) on the woman who may (should, by most non-wingnut accounts) become the first director of the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. Basically, she'd be in charge of (1) implementing and enforcing reforms to make sure the banksters couldn't again do what they did leading up to the crash of 2008, and (2) stopping them from doing some of what they've been doing since.

http://img192.imageshack.us/img192/2294/elizabethwarren.png

And what does the Party of Fiscal Responsibility™ have to say about this?

To listen to the House Republicans, you’d think the financial crisis of 2008 was like that infamous season of the long-running soap opera “Dallas,” the one that turned out to be a season-long dream. Subprime mortgages? Too-big-to-fail banks? Unregulated derivatives? No problem! With the exception of their bête noire, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the Republicans act as if nothing needs to be done to prevent another crisis. Indeed, they act as if the crisis never happened.

So, naturally, they're starting to groom their portrayal of her as the next America-hatin', MoreEvilThanSatanHimself figure to be flogged. Probably going to be a lot of highly-focused hate coming from the RWNM this summer.

I'd recommend starting with Krugman's post (http://krugman.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/03/19/heroes-as-villains-the-case-of-elizabeth-warren/) as an introduction. And don't fail to follow the other link he offers, to a post by Simon Johnson (http://baselinescenario.com/2011/03/17/whos-afraid-of-elizabeth-warren/). Johnson is a former chief economist at the International Monetary Fund, and he's none too impressed with what he's seeing from some in the White House, particularly Tim Geithner, regarding their lukewarm support for Warren and the need for reform overall.

(pic. source (http://www.occasionalplanet.org/2010/03/02/elizabeth-warren-on-the-coming-collapse-of-the-middle-class/))

bjkeefe
03-20-2011, 08:07 PM
Not for the first time have I wished that everyone on this site would listen to On The Media's weekly show. It's amazing how often they examine issues that are important to this site's diavloggers and commenters.

Anyway, even if you don't want to discuss it, this week's show (http://onthemedia.org/episodes/2011/03/18) is, as usual, highly recommended listening. Topics covered include the difficulty of reporting from within Libya, the information dissemination related to the Japanese reactors situation, a follow-up on something begun last week -- an examination of NPR's supposed biases, and an interview of James O'Keefe by co-host Bob Garfield. Note that you can stream or download, and this applies to both the whole show and the individual segments.

The bias part features, among other guests, a thoughtful guy who is described as libertarian and an evangelical Christian, and also a regular NPR listener.

The JO'K segment is augmented by OTM's making available the audio of the full interview. See the show page down near the bottom, or do the right-click, save as thing on this MP3 link (http://audio.wnyc.org/otm/otm031811_jamesokeeferawinterview.mp3). It's about 45 minutes long. (I'm just starting to listen to it now.)

Ocean
03-26-2011, 10:11 PM
This news (http://news.sciencemag.org/scienceinsider/2011/03/johannesburg-university-ends.html?etoc)is quite striking. Any thoughts?


On 23 March, the faculty senate of the University of Johannesburg in South Africa voted to terminate a collaborative agreement on water pollution studies with its 25-year research partner, the Ben Gurion University (BGU) of the Negev in Israel. ...

A campaign petition explains that the vote to break with BGU was taken because of its "complicity in Israeli apartheid"—its failure to involve Palestinians in research projects—and "its direct and deliberate collaboration with the Israeli Defense Force," among other things.

bjkeefe
03-26-2011, 10:21 PM
This news (http://news.sciencemag.org/scienceinsider/2011/03/johannesburg-university-ends.html?etoc)is quite striking. Any thoughts?

Seems like an understandable emotion, but I am always saddened when cultural exchange programs and educational/research collaborations are places chosen to cut ties. These should be the last places where people give up trying to get along in spite of differences that may exist external to them.

Ocean
03-26-2011, 10:28 PM
Seems like an understandable emotion, but I am always saddened when cultural exchange programs and educational/research collaborations are places chosen to cut ties. These should be the last places where people give up trying to get along in spite of differences that may exist external to them.

I meant striking as in shocking, not giving it a positive or negative value.

I agree that research and education tend to (and should) be the places where bridges are built, not where battles are fought. However, in this case the participation in apartheid is a particularly sensitive issue for South Africa, and I think it would be understandable that they want to cut ties, if the alleged complicity of the Ben Gurion University is true.

chiwhisoxx
03-26-2011, 11:03 PM
Fascinating piece from Wired. Long, but worth the read and I think ultimately quite persuasive.

www.wired.com/magazine/2011/03/ff_anthrax_fbi/all/1

bjkeefe
03-31-2011, 08:13 AM
... that might help you feel a bit better about humanity: "The Tire Iron and the Tamale (http://www.nytimes.com/2011/03/06/magazine/06lives-t.html)."

Ocean
03-31-2011, 06:26 PM
... that might help you feel a bit better about humanity: "The Tire Iron and the Tamale (http://www.nytimes.com/2011/03/06/magazine/06lives-t.html)."

The article should at least invite some reflection about what kind of society we're cultivating.

Do you think that this kind of experience would convert someone like Mickey? ;)

uncle ebeneezer
03-31-2011, 06:36 PM
Do you think that this kind of experience would convert someone like Mickey?

Eemposeeblay!

Seriously though. Very heart-warming story.

popcorn_karate
04-04-2011, 07:27 PM
an interesting read. http://chronicle.com/article/Bloodlust/126865/

here's a highlight:

The proposition that violence derives from kith and kin overturns a core liberal belief that we assault and are assaulted by those who are strangers to us. If that were so, the solution would be at hand: Get to know the stranger. Talk with the stranger. Reach out. The cure for violence is better communication, perhaps better education. Study foreign cultures and peoples. Unfortunately, however, our brother, our neighbor, enrages us precisely because we understand him. Cain knew his brother—he "talked with Abel his brother"—and slew him afterward.

We don't like this truth. We prefer to fear strangers.

bjkeefe
04-09-2011, 06:55 PM
I soon realized that there I was surrounded by hateful people; propping up a cause I created five years ago, a cause which I had begun to question.

So says a self-described "conservative-Republican" who has "spent the last five years putting all of my political will, interest and energy into fighting against the spread of same-sex marriage as if it were a contagious disease."

Better late than never, Louis J. Marinelli (http://louisjmarinelli.com/politics/i-now-support-full-marriage-equality). Glad you finally saw the light, and thanks for speaking up.

It's worth reading the whole thing.

(h/t: House of Substance (http://houseofsubstance.blogspot.com/2011/04/road-to-damascus.html))