schmevil: (Justice rider wondy)
(Canadian shack wankbroglio: whaaaat. I don't even know how to approach that. I... don't know enough about what sparked this? Links, anyone?)

How about something to do with actual Canada?

*The Current was broadcasting from Whitehorse today for a special episode:

Absent Aboriginal Fathers

There are many statistics. The percentage of Aboriginal children being raised by a single parent -- usually the mother -- is double the percentage of other Canadian children. One in 5 First Nations women over the age of 15 is a single mom. And if statistics don't change, a growing number of Aboriginal boys will typically become absent dads themselves. We hear from CBC Reporter, Geoff Leo who has been looking into this story and from a professor at the School of Child and Youth Care at the University of Victoria.

Love The Current, and this was a great townhall. Lots of important points raised. Lots of touching stories.

*True North Aid is raising funds for furnishing the new modular homes on their way to Attawapistkat. I'm not super familiar with the organization, so I can't advise you on it, or the program.

*Did you catch this morning's same sex marriage confusion?

The renewed attention was sparked by the case of an unidentified lesbian couple who married in Canada in 2005 but split up in 2009. The partners are living in Florida and the United Kingdom. Both women want a divorce, but cannot get one where they now live because the state of Florida does not recognize their marriage, and although the U.K. grants civil partnerships to same-sex couples, it does not recognize the Canadian marriage.

The couple went to court last June seeking a Canadian divorce, despite the federal Divorce Act's one-year residency requirement, which they do not meet. Their submission argues the rules are discriminatory, and the couple is seeking $30,000 in damages for negligent misrepresentation by the province of Ontario if their marriage is found to be invalid.

But in addition to the residency requirement, a submission from a federal government lawyer in response to the couple's case cites another reason for refusing to grant the divorce — that they are not legally married.

Documents released Thursday show the government arguing that "in order for a marriage to be legally valid under Canadian law, the parties to the marriage must satisfy both the requirements of the place where the marriage is celebrated... and the requirements of the law of domicile of the couple with regard to their legal capacity to marry one another."

Harper says he has no intention of re-opening the debate on same sex marriage.

I think it's likely that the divorce law will be amended if that's what's necessary to clear this up. The CPC isn't going to win anything from causing ANOTHER international human rights kerfluffle.
schmevil: (union)
America’s Radical "Conservatism"
Lawrence Davidson, for Consortium News (via Truthout).
March 3, 2011

Instead of the traditional conservative approach of relying on time-tested solutions, Reagan espoused the so-called Laffer Curve, which gambled on the unrealistic notion that massive tax cuts for the rich would generate more tax revenue for the Treasury, just one example of the Right’s anti-conservative — and even crazy — “conservatism,” as Lawrence Davidson notes in this guest essay:

If you have the stomach to listen to the likes of Glenn Beck or track the antics of people like Sarah Palin, you might get the idea that today’s American political conservatives are a bunch of radicals and extremists. And, as we will see, you would be correct.

But this is not how it always was. There was a time when conservatism was a more low-key affair with a certain sense of pragmatism and even fair play.

There is not much of this traditional conservatism left here in the U.S., except in certain intellectual circles. And, even there, one has the sense that it is hanging on by its fingernails.

Read more.

GRAPH: As Union Membership Has Declined, Income Inequality Has Skyrocketed In The United States
Zaid Jilani, for ThinkProgress.
March 3, 2011

Read more.
schmevil: (daily planet)
I really liked this piece:

'Soul Of A Citizen': Make A Difference, Knowing The Outcome Won't Be Perfect, by Paul Loeb

When people hesitate to take a stand on issues from the Gulf oil spill to the horror show off the coast of Gaza, it's often because they're unsure of the outcomes of their actions. The issues themselves can be complex and overwhelming. I've talked in an earlier Soul of a Citizen excerpt about the trap I call "the perfect standard," where we feel we need to know every conceivable answer before we start to take a stand. But we also hold back because all our actions seem fruitless or compromised and because we're uncertain just how they'll will play out. Yet acting despite this ambiguity is often the most effective way to make change.

Heartfelt social involvement inevitably leads us into uncertain spiritual and emotional terrain. Theologian George Johnson amplifies this point in Beyond Guilt and Powerlessness. "Most of us," he says, "are more comfortable with answers than with questions. When faced with a problem we generally approach it with the assumption that information, insights, and proper action will bring satisfactory solutions. We want to fix things right now."

But as Johnson explains, "the reality of a broken world" often leads to ambiguity rather than certainty. "What we thought, believed, assumed, or followed is suddenly brought into question .... Receiving more information unsettles us rather than making things clear and easy .... It should not surprise us that our journey into the lives of those who cry for help will be discomforting."

Read More
schmevil: (daily planet)
Facebook, MySpace Confront Privacy Loophole (Wall Street Journal)

Facebook, MySpace and several other social-networking sites have been sending data to advertising companies that could be used to find consumers' names and other personal details, despite promises they don't share such information without consent.

The practice, which most of the companies defended, sent user names or ID numbers tied to personal profiles being viewed when users clicked on ads. After questions were raised by The Wall Street Journal, Facebook and MySpace moved to make changes. By Thursday morning Facebook had rewritten some of the offending computer code.

Advertising companies were given information that could be used to look up individual profiles, which, depending on the site and the information a user has made public, include such things as a person's real name, age, hometown and occupation.


In addition to Facebook and MySpace, LiveJournal, Hi5, Xanga and Digg also sent advertising companies the user name or ID number of the page being visited. (MySpace is owned by News Corp., which also owns The Wall Street Journal.) Twitter also was found to pass Web addresses including user names of a profile being visited on

Read More.
schmevil: (daily planet)
Last night I talked about reporting Punch A Slut Week on Facebook. Sometime during the night, Facebook too the event down. \o/

Also, I can't recall if I linked to this article. Facebook’s Gone Rogue; It’s Time for an Open Alternative

Facebook has gone rogue, drunk on founder Mark Zuckerberg’s dreams of world domination. It’s time the rest of the web ecosystem recognizes this and works to replace it with something open and distributed.

Facebook used to be a place to share photos and thoughts with friends and family and maybe play a few stupid games that let you pretend you were a mafia don or a homesteader. It became a very useful way to connect with your friends, long-lost friends and family members. Even if you didn’t really want to keep up with them.

Soon everybody — including your uncle Louie and that guy you hated from your last job — had a profile.

And Facebook realized it owned the network.

Then Facebook decided to turn “your” profile page into your identity online — figuring, rightly, that there’s money and power in being the place where people define themselves. But to do that, the folks at Facebook had to make sure that the information you give it was public.

Read More
schmevil: (daily planet)
The EFF has put together a timeline of FB's privacy policies:

Facebook Privacy Policy circa 2005:

No personal information that you submit to Thefacebook will be available to any user of the Web Site who does not belong to at least one of the groups specified by you in your privacy settings.

Facebook Privacy Policy circa 2006:

We understand you may not want everyone in the world to have the information you share on Facebook; that is why we give you control of your information. Our default privacy settings limit the information displayed in your profile to your school, your specified local area, and other reasonable community limitations that we tell you about.

Facebook Privacy Policy circa 2007:

Profile information you submit to Facebook will be available to users of Facebook who belong to at least one of the networks you allow to access the information through your privacy settings (e.g., school, geography, friends of friends). Your name, school name, and profile picture thumbnail will be available in search results across the Facebook network unless you alter your privacy settings.

Facebook Privacy Policy circa November 2009:

Facebook is designed to make it easy for you to share your information with anyone you want. You decide how much information you feel comfortable sharing on Facebook and you control how it is distributed through your privacy settings. You should review the default privacy settings and change them if necessary to reflect your preferences. You should also consider your settings whenever you share information. ...

Information set to "everyone" is publicly available information, may be accessed by everyone on the Internet (including people not logged into Facebook), is subject to indexing by third party search engines, may be associated with you outside of Facebook (such as when you visit other sites on the internet), and may be imported and exported by us and others without privacy limitations. The default privacy setting for certain types of information you post on Facebook is set to "everyone." You can review and change the default settings in your privacy settings.

Facebook Privacy Policy circa December 2009:

Certain categories of information such as your name, profile photo, list of friends and pages you are a fan of, gender, geographic region, and networks you belong to are considered publicly available to everyone, including Facebook-enhanced applications, and therefore do not have privacy settings. You can, however, limit the ability of others to find this information through search using your search privacy settings.

Current Facebook Privacy Policy, as of April 2010:

When you connect with an application or website it will have access to General Information about you. The term General Information includes your and your friends' names, profile pictures, gender, user IDs, connections, and any content shared using the Everyone privacy setting. ... The default privacy setting for certain types of information you post on Facebook is set to "everyone." ... Because it takes two to connect, your privacy settings only control who can see the connection on your profile page. If you are uncomfortable with the connection being publicly available, you should consider removing (or not making) the connection.

Read More.
schmevil: (daily planet)
Clinic: New Okla. abortion law hard on patients, AP.

The requirements of Oklahoma's new abortion law are drawing some emotional responses from patients, a clinic director said Wednesday, now that women must have an ultrasound and hear a detailed description of the fetus before the procedure can be done.


The new statute requires the person performing the ultrasound to describe the dimensions of the fetus, whether arms, legs and internal organs are visible and whether there is cardiac activity. It also requires the doctor to turn a screen depicting the ultrasound images toward the woman to see them.

Meek said no patient at the clinic had yet canceled an abortion after hearing a description of the fetus. Jennifer Mondino, an attorney for the Center for Reproductive Rights that filed the lawsuit, said that so far no patient at the Tulsa clinic has decided to view the images.

Meek said requiring women to listen to a description can be traumatic, she said, especially for rape and incest victims and women with fetal abnormalities or whose pregnancy threatens their own life.

Read More.


No abortion in Canada's G8 maternal health plan, CBC

The federal government has disclosed for the first time that Canada will not fund abortions in its G8 child and maternal health-care initiative for developing countries.


International Co-operation Minister Bev Oda said the government would consider funding family planning measures such as contraception, but not abortion under any circumstances.

"We're saying that we're using the definition in our discussions of family planning, which does not include abortion," Oda told reporters on Monday in Halifax, where she was meeting with her G8 counterparts.

"We're not debating abortion; we're clarifying family planning."

Read More
schmevil: (daily planet)
In 2008, a San Francisco softball team came to Seattle to compete in the Gay Softball World Series. The team, named D2, made it all the way to the championship game. And that's when people started asking questions. No, literally. In the middle of the game.

Now the players are suing.


After losing the game, five players from D2 were brought to a hearing where they were "forced to answer intrusive questions about their sexual orientation and private life in front of a room of over 25 people," including whether they were "predominantly attracted to men" or "predominantly attracted to women."


In response to a player's statement that he was attracted to both men and women, a NAGAAA member responded, "This is the Gay World Series, not the Bisexual World Series."

Read More.
schmevil: (daily planet)
This is a delicious must-read shredding of Bill Kristol's defense of Don't Ask, Don't Tell. With actual numbers to back them up The Economist exposes DADA for the blatant exercise in bigotry for what it is: a disgusting and absurd policy that's led to the discharge of 12,000 active duty soldiers, in the midst of two, large-scale, messy conflicts, that isn't even supported by a majority of soldiers.

It rests on the notion that some soldiers are homophobic and, therefore, any change to the policy might negatively affect morale. Yet he presents little evidence to back up his claim. Because I am startled by his blatant, unsupported, anachronistic bigotry, I thought I might amuse myself by offering up Mr Kristol's article in full, peppered with pointed interjections from myself.

In his State of the Union address, Barack Obama worried that “too many of our citizens have lost faith” in “our biggest institutions.” Many of those institutions have, of course, invited disillusionment with their feckless and irresponsible behavior. But poll after poll shows that at least one major American institution retains citizens’ faith. Indeed, this institution has improved its standing in recent years as respect for others has declined. That institution is the U.S. military.

So what institution does the president want to subject to an untested, unnecessary, and probably unwise social experiment? The U.S. military.

Social experiment? Open and peaceful cohabitation with non-heterosexuals is a social experiment that has been going on for decades, with fairly good results. But yes, it is "unnecessary", in the same way that allowing blacks to serve on equal terms was unnecessary, if you happened to be white.

“This year,” the president informed us, “I will work with Congress and our military to finally repeal the law that denies gay Americans the right to serve the country they love because of who they are.”

It’s hard to know where that “finally” came from. Until a year ago, Americans had elected presidents who were in favor of upholding “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell”—so if action on this has been overdue, it’s only been for the single year of the Obama presidency.

The "finally" comes from over five years of polling (or "poll after poll" as Mr Kristol says) showing support for repealing the law. Or maybe it was "finally" as in "finally, eight years after beginning one war and six years after starting a second, concurrent one, stretching the forces to the breaking point, we are considering letting all able Americans serve openly."

But the repeal is something that Obama campaigned on. He believes in it.

Wait, not only is he lobbying to make this change, but he also "believes" in it? What an awkward misuse of elected office!

Read more.
schmevil: (daily planet)

When a group with a longstanding, deeply entrenched systemic advantage — “privilege,” in the parlance of Women’s Studies and programs like it — speaks heatedly of its “rights” vis-à-vis a less privileged group, it’s usually seen as an expression of bigotry. “White rights” are generally invoked by white supremacists. The words “Jewish conspiracy” or “immigrant takeover” are surefire conversation stoppers. Heterosexuals who object to gay pride parades on the basis that no “straight parades” exist are, if not completely homophobic, not all that bright. In either case, the opinions expressed aren’t just stupid; they’re alarming. We don’t see why things should be any different when it comes to gender, and yet the “pendulum has swung” argument is somehow viable when women’s rights is the issue at stake.

It disturbs us that the Post — that any national publication — could consider such nonsense appropriate for publication. Disturbs, but doesn’t surprise. Somehow, sexism doesn’t register harshly; being a pig barely carries a stigma (in fact, you could argue that the inverse is true).

Feminists are used to responding to arguments against, and myths about, feminism with a litany of reasons why it’s still important: rape and sexual abuse; pay inequality; domestic violence; barriers to education and employment; the dearth of female representation in governments worldwide, in the professions, and in arts and letters (including, regrettably, in the pages of this magazine—we’re working on it). We shouldn’t have to; it should be generally accepted. That otherwise intelligent people need to be reminded of why the cause exists — that they find the pursuit of gender equality in any way objectionable, and feel comfortable stating as much to a national audience — is, in fact, a slam-dunk argument for the importance of Women’s Studies programs.

Read more here.
schmevil: (feminazi)



The National Post Editorial Board:

The radical feminism behind these courses has done untold damage to families, our court systems, labour laws, constitutional freedoms and even the ordinary relations between men and women.

Women's Studies courses have taught that all women--or nearlyall-- are victims and nearly all men are victimizers. Their professors have argued, with some success, that rights should be granted not to individuals alone, but to whole classes of people, too. This has led to employment equity -- hiring quotas based on one's gender or race rather than on an objective assessment of individual talents.

Executives, judges and university students must now sit through mandatory diversity training. Divorcing men find they lose their homes and access to their children, and must pay much of their income to their former spouses (then pay tax on the income they no longer have) largely because Women's Studies activists convinced politicians that family law was too forgiving of men. So now a man entering court against a woman finds the deck stacked against him, thanks mostly to the radical feminist jurisprudence that found it roots and nurture in Women's Studies.

Read more:


Nov. 3rd, 2009 07:34 am
schmevil: (daily planet)
I don't have words for how utterly fucking ridiculous this is.

Pay us oil money, or the rainforest gets it

ECUADOR's unprecedented offer to accept payment for not extracting oil from beneath the Amazon rainforest is beginning to draw interest. The move could usher in a new way to both combat climate change and prevent damage to ecologically diverse and sensitive regions.

Incentives do work, but this is absurd.
schmevil: (graffitti)
The Ph.D. Problem
On the professionalization of faculty life, doctoral training, and the academy’s self-renewal
by Louis Menand

It may be that the increased time-to-degree, combined with the weakening job market for liberal arts Ph.D.s, is what is responsible for squeezing the profession into a single ideological box. It takes three years to become a lawyer. It takes four years to become a doctor. But it takes from six to nine years, and sometimes longer, to be eligible to teach college students for a living. Tightening up the oversight on student progress might reduce the time-to-degree by a little, but as long as the requirements remain, as long as students in most fields have general exams, field (or oral) exams, and monograph-length dissertations, it is not easy to see how the reduction will be significant. What is clear is that students who spend eight or nine years in graduate school are being seriously over-trained for the jobs that are available. The argument that they need the training to be qualified to teach undergraduates is belied by the fact that they are already teaching undergraduates. Undergraduate teaching is part of doctoral education; at many institutions, graduate students begin teaching classes the year they arrive. And the idea that the doctoral thesis is a rigorous requirement is belied by the quality of most doctoral theses. If every graduate student were required to publish a single peer-reviewed article instead of writing a thesis, the net result would probably be a plus for scholarship.

One pressure on universities to reduce radically the time-to-degree is simple humanitarianism. Lives are warped because of the length and uncertainty of the doctoral education process. Many people drop in and drop out and then drop in again; a large proportion of students never finish; and some people have to retool at relatively advanced ages. Put in less personal terms, there is a huge social inefficiency in taking people of high intelligence and devoting resources to training them in programs that half will never complete and for jobs that most will not get. Unfortunately, there is an institutional efficiency, which is that graduate students constitute a cheap labor force. There are not even search costs involved in appointing a graduate student to teach. The system works well from the institutional point of view not when it is producing Ph.D.s, but when it is producing ABDs. It is mainly ABDs who run sections for lecture courses and often offer courses of their own. The longer students remain in graduate school, the more people are available to staff undergraduate classes. Of course, overproduction of Ph.D.s also creates a buyer’s advantage in the market for academic labor. These circumstances explain the graduate-student union movement that has been going on in higher education since the mid 1990s.

schmevil: (daily planet)
The Guardian's live blog.

Oh, and Scans Daily gets topical: Persepolis and Unknown Soldier.

Now I'm off to see Up with my brother.
schmevil: (daily planet)
Read more... )

دنیارابگوییدچطورآنهاانتخاباتمان دزدیده اند
Tell the world how they have stolen our election

- original article by one_hoopy_frood on LJ

schmevil: (daily planet)
[The following is a meme post; text and pics not mine; original post by [ profile] one_hoopy_frood]

Read more... )

دنیارابگوییدچطورآنهاانتخاباتمان دزدیده اند
Tell the world how they have stolen our election

- original post by [ profile] one_hoopy_frood
schmevil: (daily planet)

Wikipedia: 2009 Iranian election protests and Iranian presidential election, 2009

Revolutionary Road has been updating regularly

The Tehran Bureau and on facebook

Andrew Sullivan

BBC has some good links

[ profile] ladycat777: More Iran and a rundown of what's going on

Ben Parr: HOW TO: Track Iran Election with Twitter and Social Media

Use google blog search to find updates

HuffPo is liveblogging


HuffPo on twitter feeds

Use Monitter to get real time updates of Twitter conversations (#IranElection, Ahmadinejad, Mousavi, Tehran)

Iran tweets aggregated on Twazzup

To get tweets from around Tehran enter this string into the search box near:Tehran within:15mi

[ profile] ingrid_m: This Will Not Stand
The Twitter hashtag is #iranelection. If corresponding with an Iranian protester, please remove their handles from your Reply To and replace with this tag instead for the sake of their safety as they are being monitored.

DDOS attacks and proxies

4chan members have been ddosing Iranian government sites

Austin Heap: How to set up a proxy for Iranian citizens

The Great Moose suggests using Page Reboot to help overload the following sites: (Ahmedinejad's site)

Photos and videos


Iran elections and Iran Riots 2009 on Flickr

A quick search on You Tube brings up lots of results
schmevil: (daily planet)
G-20 Protesters Jam London, Target Banks
Thousands of G-20 protesters jammed downtown London on Wednesday and some tried to storm the Bank of England, pelting police with eggs and fruit and rocking the barricades designed to control them.

Demonstrators shouted "Abolish Money!" and clogged streets in the financial district known as "The City" even as Prime Minister Gordon Brown and President Barack Obama held a news conference elsewhere in the British capital.

Protesters had branded the day "Financial Fool's Day" ahead of Thursday's summit of world leaders who are gathering in hopes of resolving the global financial crisis that has lashed nations and workers worldwide.

"Every job I apply for there's already 150 people who have also applied," said protester Nathan Dean, 35, who lost his information technology job three weeks ago. "I have had to sign on to the dole (welfare) for the first time in my life. You end up having to pay your mortgage on your credit card and you fall into debt twice over."

Demonstrators hoisted effigies of the "four horsemen of the apocalypse," representing war, climate chaos, financial crimes and homelessness., April 1, 2009

Abolish money, huh? That'll be received well.
schmevil: (daily planet)
Valentines Day doesn't interest me, so I'm going to share some stuff that did interest me, from my morning news scan.

Actually, I just thought of one Valentine-y thing that does interest me - anyone seen editorials about how you can do your part to support capitalism this V-Day? "IN THIS ECONOMY GO BIG OR GO HOME--BUY GIANT STUFFED ANIMALS AND SUPPORT AMERICA CHINA GLOBAL CAPITAL!" Come on, somebody's got to be talking about the importance of spending our hard-earned, fist-full o' dollars on red and pink crap.



Computer generated illustration of the situation out there (via European Space Agency). Go here for a larger version of the image. And here for a table of space junk, as of 2000, and space junk facts.

Possum with bandaged paws at the Healsville Santurary in Australia. (via a short piece from NPR)

Penguins Showing Strain Under Climate Change
Argentina's Magellanic penguins are moving north, laying their eggs later than they used to, and struggling -- often unsuccessfully -- to feed their chicks, all as a result of climate change.

These findings suggest the need for a major shift in the way we think about protecting penguins, as well as other marine creatures, said conservation biologist Dee Boersma, of the University of Washington in Seattle. She presented the results of more than 25 years of research today in Chicago at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

"Penguins are incredible sentinels for our environment, particularly the ocean environment," Boersma said. "They're already telling us there are severe changes going on."

Fourteen of the world's 19 penguin species are threatened or endangered, with a few species in deep trouble. A major reason for their decline, Boersma said, is an increasingly variable climate, with more frequent El Nino and La Nina events that can drastically change water temperatures and nutrient levels from year to year. Climate models predict more of this type of variability to come.

February 14, 2009
Emily Sohn, Discovery News

Google Power Meter
Google believes consumers have a right to detailed information about their home energy use. After all, real-time energy information helps people make smarter choices so they can save energy and money. Studies show that people save 5-15% of their energy costs when they have access to information about their energy consumption.

(via Earth2Tech)

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