Sunday and various

This essay covers some of the same ground I tried to cover in my homily “Good Atheist, Bad Atheist”.

I’m not sure I would have sent the baby home with that mother, but oh well.

An interesting article about geography and history.

Ew.  I’d never touch my mouse if it looked like this.

Interactive map of US job losses.

Bruce Sterling writes about SF, design and culture.

If you’ve got Twitter sign up with @Veratect – they are keeping track of the swine flu epidemic in realtime.

Speaking of which, here is a link to checklists regarding prepping for a long bout of flu.

Battlestar fest yesterday. I also cleaned off the back deck, changed cat litter and re-read Patrick O’Brian’s Letter of Marque.  Keith is still here.  I’m trying to think of what I want to make for breakfast, and kinda drawing a blank.

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Born when atmospheric carbon was 316 PPM. Settled on MST country since 1997. Parent, grandparent.

3 thoughts on “Sunday and various”

  1. Comments – Boy, do I have comments:
    1)re “Jewcy” essay:
    There’s a wonderfully, if not quite exclusively, Jewish attitude here. You’re not required to believe, belief may even be irrelevant – you are required to obey. But obey what, the whole interminable list? That would include exterminating queers, adulterers and Malekites (if you can find any of the latter), marrying your late brother’s widow, et. anachronistic cetera. If not, how do you decide which commandments you must obey, and which you can ignore? And if the whole enterprise becomes a matter of opinion, why not go there directly without the detour through divine commandments?
    2) re Geographic Determinism: What’s with the “speaking as one who supported the Iraq war” bit? I’ve seen lines like this in many places, the obvious implication being that you don’t get any credit for being right unless you were wrong in the first instance. Okay, everybody is wrong once in a while, but we might reasonably expect that those who have a proven record of being wrong will do so more frequently, and perhaps with more style and flair, having had more practice.
    3)re B.S. on SF, design and culture (sorry, couldn’t resist): Let’s have a little more on the content of the pulps, shall we? The content was filled out with reprints of Wells, Verne and other older, “literary” speculative fiction, so the callow youth that read them got connected with an older and deeper body of work. Some of these grew up to be scientists or engineers, some to be SF writers (see Asimov, “In Memory Yet Green”), some to be scientists or engineers who write SF. “Science fiction users supposed that they wanted a jet-propelled, atomic futurity…They never left science fiction to go get (it)” Wrong, Bruce, we’re living in a science fiction world now, complete with jet propulsion and atomic power, and largely because a bunch of SF “users” went out and built it.(see “The Dreams our Stuff is Made Of”) And if it hasn’t turned out the way anyone imagined it, well, “the universe is not only stranger than we imagine, it’s stranger than we can imagine”. That goes for human technological and social evolution as much as it does for the natural world.

  2. re: toilet baby, though it may not seem sensible to send baby home with mama who didn’t know she was pregnant, I don’t know that the medical professionals showed much more sense in this matter.

  3. Thanks for the ‘Revenge of Geography’ link. I’ve forwarded this site to several of my colleagues in the CCA (Canadian Cartographic Association), and on behalf of them I say thank you!

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