fight the system
You fucking nerds
Hovertext: Also, AWAKE is the coolest experiment going.
GOP Hypocrisy: screw as I say, not as I screw
This is probably my biggest problem with conservatives (aside from the racism, xenophobia, sexism, and homophobia): the fact that they spend all their time lecturing the rest of us on morality and yet can’t live up to their own ridiculous standards.
Bristol Palin having kids, whether she’s married or not? Don’t give a fuck. Bristol Palin having kids out of wedlock when both she and her mother are outspoken advocates for abstinence and shaming those who dare to view sex as anything more than a baby factory? Not cool.
I spent three weeks in a mental hospital and what I discovered there I feel like should be put into words.
we are not who you think we are.
the boy with turrets told the funniest jokes
the girl who raked her nails up and down her skin could create the most exquisite drawings
the girl who abused drugs had the wisest soul
the boy with schizophrenia had the biggest heart
the girl who tried to kill herself told the boy with insomnia stories to help lure him to sleep
the boy who wanted to kill himself had the deepest passion for cooking
the girl with slits and scars all over her body dried my tears and told me I was beautiful
the boy with anger issues gave the warmest hugs
the girl with bulimia told everyone every day that they looked beautiful in their bodies
the boy who was a compulsive liar told us that he wanted us all to get better, and that he was for once telling the truth
the girl who almost drank herself to death stood up for anyone that felt they were feeling bullied
the boy with social anxiety made sure nobody sat alone at meals
we are not who you think we are.
*slams reblog button*
Psychiatric hospitals have the most stigma.
God this is beautiful
I’m gonna print this out and read it day after day. We’re real people. We are. And we are so much more than our issues.
This is so fucking true. When I got sent to the psychatric ward, they were the kindest most brilliant people I ever met. But the doctors treated us like monsters, prisoners.
ayn rand failing to understand that sesame street is for young children
reminder series: bleak yet comforting thoughts.
i specifically chose animals that are (or believed to be) extinct due to human influence: thylacine, great auk, baiji, west african black rhino, golden toad, dodo, passenger pigeon, and quagga. there are many other species i could have included. the plants are also based on extinct species, but i found much less information about extinct plants, unfortunately.
the text doesn’t necessarily relate to each animal or their extinction. it’s all basically the same idea: let’s all be nice to each other, because today, the universe is vast and incomprehensible, we are all suffering, we are all going to die, and we’re all in this together. for today.
i’m busy for a couple weeks with conventions, but after that i’m considering a companion series with ancient extinct animals, so feel free to send me your favorites :)
For just under $4 million you can live in Frank Sinatra's Villa Maggio, a five acre home on a mountain above California's Palm Desert. Read the rest
So there's this hilarious wrecky outbreak happening across our nation's bakeries, but it requires a little explanation before you can truly appreciate how funny it is.
Here's the deal:
See that? That's an edible image sheet. These sheets are supposed to work like individual stickers: you cut them up and only use the numbers & phrases you need.
Instead, bakers just keep plastering the entire sheet on a cake.
At first I figured it HAD to be intentional. Maybe they give you an edible marker with the cake, so you circle the right numbers?
Then I saw this:
You've gotta wonder: what does the baker THINK is happening here?
Or how about this one:
That's right; the baker cut up the sheet so it would all (kind of) fit.
Love the random "th" sticking out of the bottom.
I think most people are too confused to understand what's wrong with these cakes, but enough of you are still sending them in. So, I've just been collecting them:
Biding my time...
Waiting for the right moment to finally ask:
Thanks to Heather W., Angela F., Heather C., Ashley M., Emily F., Melissa L., & Heather D. for the big pile of sheet... cakes.
Her words ought to have some weight, I think, and they represent a rational response to the issue.
His remarks at first seemed to me just a drop in the bucket of millions of similar ones made every day about women in the workplace, often by decent men who would be horrified to be regarded as misogynists. For me they confirmed an age old stereotype of women as trouble, so old that it goes back to Adam and Eve. But they were the drop that finally caused the bucket to flow over. They became a catalyst for a deep-seated bitterness to pour out of people, not only women, who simply felt that enough was enough. This was an outpouring waiting to happen. It needed just that little drop.
What is the bitterness about? Injustice, plain and simple. And it coincides with my own anxieties as chair of the Diversity committee. The bitterness is sustained by the strong feeling that women have not had a fair chance to succeed in science. This is a serious problem in science in general, but it is also a problem for the Royal Society. It is a fact that only 105 out of 1569 Fellows are women (6.7%). It is a fact that only 22 out of 106 of the awards and medals given by the Society over the last 5 years were given to women and that over those five years only 22% of the successful candidates on the Royal Society’s University Research Fellows and Sir Henry Dale Fellows were women.
They have a responsibility to respond to biased remarks by their representatives.
As the case of Tim Hunt has shown, prejudice is unacceptable even if meant in jest. The Royal Society as an institution quickly dissociated itself from his remarks. It was necessary to affirm the truth of its genuine wish to do away with the obstacles that stand in the way of women’s careers in science. To do nothing would send a signal that it is acceptable to trivialise women’s achievement in science. Institutions can do things that individuals can’t. As individuals, whether we are Fellows of the Royal Society or anyone else, we are all capable of saying things that are inappropriate and foolish. Without being aware of it, we favour our ingroup, and are ready to disrespect outgroups, often in rather subtle ways. We are human and we are fallible. Institutions try to transcend this weakness, even if they don’t always succeed.
That’s the thing — I’m seeing a lot of people saying his remarks were OK, because he meant them as a joke, and there’s been an amazing amount of bizarre finger-pointing at lines remembered after the fact that indicate he wasn’t being serious. It doesn’t matter. It was a bad joke, and he flubbed it completely. The Korea Federation of Women’s Science and Technology Associations thought it was tasteless and required an apology, which Hunt gave, so all this floundering about and trying to find an excuse in humor is irrelevant.
The comments at the Royal Society are just as bad. There is the perennial “witch hunt” accusation, and my favorite example of hysterical hyperbole so far:
I don’t think that institutionalising presumed guilt, of a mere thought crime (unconscious bias), sets a very enlightened example at all. We also learn that the Tim Hunt story is more complex and nuanced than many people wish to acknowledge. Nor do Maoist style re-education schemes set a very enlightened example – based on public humiliation-confession-brainwashing. “Nulls in verba” – my bottom !
Thought crime! Complex and nuanced! (No, it wasn’t: he peddled tired stereotypes for a cheap laugh). Maoist style re-education schemes! Brainwashing!
The Royal Society: a radical hotbed of Maoists. Right. It’s always so affirming when the nutters rage against you so intemperately.
I was in the airport last Friday when the Supreme Court ruling on same-sex marriage came down, and one of the first thoughts I had on that was, “Looks like I picked the right week to go to San Francisco.” And you know what? I was right! The city was, verily, bedecked in rainbow flags and happiness. After my events at ALA on Saturday I went with friends to City Hall, where the pride celebration was in full swing, and watched people being happy, all over the place (plus occasional hippie nudity, because San Francisco). It’s very rare to be in the right place at the right time, when history is actually and genuinely happening around you. But I was, and I was delighted in the happy circumstance that put me there.
I’m even more delighted that my country is now a better place than it was at 9:59am on June 26, when a minority of states still didn’t allow gays and lesbians the simple, basic right of marrying the person whom they loved and wished to spend their life with. Those days are now gone, thankfully, despite a few pockets of resistance, which I don’t suspect will last very long. Texas, as an example, is a place where the Attorney General is telling county clerks they may defy the Supreme Court; it’s also a place where two octogenarian men, together for more than 50 years, became the first same-sex couple to wed in Dallas County. Who do you think history, and Texas, will celebrate more: The two men confirming their decades-long love to each other, or the government official symbolically standing in front of the courthouse door to oppose their right to confirm that love?
Bluntly: Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton is going down in history as a bigot. So will Texas’ governor and lieutenant governor. So will Ted Cruz, Mike Huckabee and all the other politicians (and would-be politicians) who are thumping around now, pretending not to understand what it is that the Supreme Court does, or the legitimacy of its rulings under the Constitution, and pretending that their religion makes that feigned lack of understanding all right. Dan Patrick, the Texas Lieutenant Governor, has said “I would rather be on the wrong side of history than on the wrong side of my faith and my beliefs.” Well, Mr. Patrick, you’re not only definitely on the wrong side of history, but you’re also on the wrong side of your professed faith. Jesus never once said “be a bigot in my name.” If you believe He did, you might want to recheck your Bible. That admonition is not there, although the admonition to love your neighbor as yourself is.
On a related topic, this Time magazine article by Rod Dreher on orthodox Christians being “exiles in our own country” struck me as a bit dramatic. Not being in step with the mainstream of American life and opinion does not make you an exile, especially when you suffer no estrangement under the law. When the mainstream of American life did not include the idea that same-sex marriage was a viable thing, which was an opinion different than mine, I was not in exile in my own country — although same-sex couples may have been, as the law estranged them from the rights they should have had under the Constitution, now affirmed by the Supreme Court. The affirmation of those rights did not and does not take away rights from anyone who believes same-sex marriage is wrong. You may still believe they’re wrong; you just can’t stop those couples from getting legally married. Unless you think it should be your right to deprive others of their rights, everything’s the same for you as it was before. And if you do believe it’s your right to deprive others of their rights, then you’re a bigot, whether you cloak it in religion or not.
I suspect that this is the thing Dreher is really worried about, whether he’s aware of it or not — that the perception of certain religious sects will change from them being depositories of rectitude to cisterns of intolerance. Well, this is a fair concern, isn’t it? Over the last twenty years in particular, nearly every American learned that someone they cared about or even loved — a family member, a friend, a co-worker or neighbor or a person they admired — was not straight, or 100% conforming to society’s ideas of gender. Over the last two decades, Americans decided it was more important to tell those people they still loved them and that they deserved the same rights as everyone else, than it was to listen to those people who said, through their words and actions, that these people we loved represented some sort of threat. Your mom is not a threat to America, if she happens to be gay or bisexual. Nor is your dad. Nor your sibling, or your best friend, or Doug from Accounting or Jillian down the street or Ellen DeGeneres. Who are you going to choose to stand with? Your sister, or some dude at a pulpit demanding we believe the bowels of Hell will empty if she marries her girlfriend? Your sister’s girlfriend is awesome! That guy is a jerk!
Which is the thing: the religious sects terrified that they will now lose their moral standing lost that standing long before, when they said, in so many words, in so many actions, that the people we love and know and know to be good, and their desire to have the same rights as everyone else, are what’s wrong with America. Dreher laments we now live in a “post-Christian” America, but he’s wrong. The Americans who are standing with their loved ones and neighbors are in fact doing exactly what Jesus asked them to do, when he said that we should love each other as we love ourselves. It’s possible, however, that we live in a post-accepting-bigotry-cloaking-itself-in-the-raiments-of-Christ America. And, you know. I can live in that America just fine.
Regardless, the America we do live in now lets anyone person marry any other person who they love. I like this America. I am glad I live in it.
Cops standing in front of big drug seizures look great on the evening news. But it sells a lie that we’re winning, just like George Bush on an aircraft carrier declaring that a war was over that still rages on today.
It’s not only that we can’t win this war, it’s that we’re destroying ourselves fighting it. We are literally addicted to the War on Drugs. A half-century of failed policy, $1 trillion, and 45 million arrests has not reduced daily drug use—at all. The U.S. still leads the world in illegal drug consumption, drugs are cheaper, more available, and more potent than ever before.
Our justice system is a junkie, demanding its daily fix of arrests, seizures and convictions. It needs drugs. It’s as hooked as that guy sticking a needle into his arm even though he knows it’s killing him.”
With a net income of more than $1 billion Elsevier is one of the largest academic publishers in the world.
The company has the rights to many academic publications where scientists publish their latest breakthroughs. Most of these journals are locked behind paywalls, which makes it impossible for less fortunate researchers to access them.
Sci-Hub.org is one of the main sites that circumvents this artificial barrier. Founded by Alexandra Elbakyan, a researcher born and graduated in Kazakhstan, its main goal is to provide the less privileged with access to science and knowledge.
The service is nothing like the average pirate site. It wasn’t started to share the latest Hollywood blockbusters, but to gain access to critical knowledge that researchers require to do their work.
“When I was working on my research project, I found out that all research papers I needed for work were paywalled. I was a student in Kazakhstan at the time and our university was not subscribed to anything,” Alexandra tells TF.
After Googling for a while Alexandra stumbled upon various tools and services to bypass the paywalls. With her newly gained knowledge, she then started participating in online forums where other researchers requested papers.
When she noticed how grateful others were for the papers she shared, Alexandra decided to automate the process by developing software that could allow anyone to search for and access papers. That’s when Sci-Hub was born, back in 2011.
“The software immediately became popular among Russian researchers. There was no big idea behind the project, like ‘make all information free’ or something like that. We just needed to read all these papers to do our research,” Alexandra.
“Now, the goal is to collect all research papers ever published, and make them free,” she adds.
Of course Alexandra knew that the website could lead to legal trouble. In that regard, the lawsuit filed by Elsevier doesn’t come as a surprise. However, she is more than willing to fight for the right to access knowledge, as others did before her.
“Thanks to Elsevier’s lawsuit, I got past the point of no return. At this time I either have to prove we have the full right to do this or risk being executed like other ‘pirates’,” she says, naming Aaron Swartz as an example.
“If Elsevier manages to shut down our projects or force them into the darknet, that will demonstrate an important idea: that the public does not have the right to knowledge. We have to win over Elsevier and other publishers and show that what these commercial companies are doing is fundamentally wrong.”
The idea that a commercial outfit can exploit the work of researchers, who themselves are often not paid for their contributions, and hide it from large parts of the academic world, is something she does not accept.
“Everyone should have access to knowledge regardless of their income or affiliation. And that’s absolutely legal. Also the idea that knowledge can be a private property of some commercial company sounds absolutely weird to me.”
Most research institutions in Russia, in developing countries and even in the U.S. and Europe can’t afford expensive subscriptions. This means that they can’t access crucial research, including biomedical research such as cancer studies.Elsevier’s ScienceDirect paywall
So aside from the public at large, Sci-Hub is also an essential tool for academics. In fact, some researchers use the site to access their own publications, because these are also locked behind a paywall.
“The funniest thing I was told multiple times by researchers is that they have to download their own published articles from Sci-Hub. Even authors do not have access to their own work,” Alexandra says.
Instead of seeing herself as the offender, Alexandra believes that the major academic publishers are the ones who are wrong.
“I think Elsevier’s business model is itself illegal,” she says, pointing to article 27 of the UN declaration on human rights which reads that “everyone has the right freely to participate in the cultural life of the community, to enjoy the arts and to share in scientific advancement and its benefits.”
The paywalls of Elsevier and other publishers violate this right, she believes. The same article 27 also allows authors to protect their works, but the publishers are not the ‘authors,’ they merely exploit the copyrights.
Alexandra insists that her website is legal and hopes that future changes in copyright law will reflect this. As for the Elsevier lawsuit, she’s not afraid to fight for her rights and already offers a public confession right here.
“I developed the Sci-Hub.org website where anyone can download paywalled research papers by request. Also I uploaded at least half of more than 41 million paywalled papers to the LibGen database and worked actively to create mirrors of it.
“I am not afraid to say this, because when you do the right thing, why should you hide it?” she concludes.
Note: Sci-Hub is temporarily using the sci-hub.club domain name. The .org will be operational again next week.
I could go for a massive inheritance tax, as long as provisions were made for marriage (we made this money together) and disabled children. Republicans would happily go along with it, right?
Minnesota, known for high taxes and for being sympathetic to labor unions, is the nation’s best state for conducting business in 2015, according to a new ranking from CNBC, the business news channel.The state moved up from No. 6 last year and 15th in 2013.“Never since we began rating the states in 2007 has a high-tax, high-wage, union-friendly state made it to the top of our rankings,” CNBC said in a statement accompanying the rankings. “But Minnesota does so well in so many other areas — like education and quality of life — that its cost disadvantages fade away.”The network’s study uses 60 measures of competitiveness, separated into 10 categories. The categories include workforce, economy, infrastructure and transportation, education, cost of living, cost of doing business, access to capital, innovation, business friendliness and quality of life...CNBC also said Minnesota ranked third for quality of life, noting a low crime rate, clean air and water, and access to quality health care...
The Nightly Show, June 22, 2015
That’s right Bill, and it’s great.
The Left's 21st century agenda: expunging every trace of respect, recognition or acknowledgment of Americans who fought for the Confederacy.
— Bill Kristol (@BillKristol) June 23, 2015