Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Today's Internets.

Downing Street Defends Thatcher Funeral Expense, 'Pretty Extraordinary' Not To Hold Ceremony: "Downing Street has said it would "pretty extraordinary" if Margaret Thatcher was not given the expensive and large ceremonial funeral at St Paul's Cathedral as planned. The cost of Wednesday's procession from Westminster to St Paul's and the funeral itself has been estimated to be as much as £10m. The government will only publish the full cost to the taxpayer of the event after Wednesday's lavish event and has not given a formal estimate of how much it will be. On Monday the prime minister's spokesperson refused to say whether there was any budget or limit to the expense. "The government has not given an estimate. What the government will do after the funeral is publish the cost to the public purse," the spokesperson said."


D A R L I N G | The musings and observations of a 30 year-old woman: "I can’t tell you how often I hear something like, “I wouldn’t trust my husband to make that decision,” or “having a husband is just like having another child.”  These women treat their husbands like moronic, sperm donors and bank accounts and then cry to their friends when he starts acting cold, bitter and resentful toward them.  “It’s just so strange, why would he suddenly be treating me this way??”"

"Most people are average. Average intelligence, average appearance, average ambitions. If you compare yourself to these people, and find that you are better, guess what that makes you – above average.
Now I don’t know about you, but “above average” is not something that I find myself being proud of. It’s the /bare fucking minimum/ acceptable standard for life. It’s the baseline, the starting point, from which the battle for excellence truly begins.
I couldn’t care less about what 99% of the people are doing. The metric against which I choose to judge myself is the top 1%. The far outlying edge of the bell curve."

At Little Round Top, site of Colonel Chamberlain's famous "Fix Bayonets!" defense. One of the few stories I remember from my military indoctrination days, due to its sheer badassery.  
And the made for TV movie version of that event from Gettysburg.
Out of ammo?  Fix bayonets and charge.  Like a boss.

Good call on making that a “nonfat” | D A R L I N G: "The girl in line in front of me is pretty hefty.  I’m going to ballpark her at about sixty pounds overweight.  In and of its self not so strange any more, but her drink order caught my attention. Lady: “Hi, can I get a venti, non-fat, java-chip frappuccino with extra whipped cream and caramel?” Barista: “Venti, java-chip frappuccino, extra whip and caramel.” Lady: “Nonfat.” Barista: “Right.  Nonfat.” Ha! Nonfat.  This woman is about to consume 500+ calories before 8:00am in the guise of her morning cup of joe.   Thirty whole calories she’s saving by using nonfat milk and she’ll be damned if that sneaky barista is gonna slip those extra calories in there using whole milk!"

| If there is one thing I have learned time and time...: "If there is one thing I have learned time and time again it is that attitude is everything. In the gym, as in life, when stepping up to the challenge that lay ahead of you, your mind, your immediate feelings that sit in the forefront of your brain, will absolutely determine the outcome regardless of your skills or previous training. Tell yourself that the task is beyond your abilities, that you aren’t capable, and failure is almost immanent. But change the voice, change the message, and suddenly nothing stands in your way."

FuturePundit: Angry Female Faces Look Less Female: "Rockville, MD – "Why is it that men can be bastards and women must wear pearls and smile?" wrote author Lynn Hecht Schafran. The answer, according to an article in the Journal of Vision, may lie in our interpretation of facial expressions. In two studies, researchers asked subjects to identify the sex of a series of faces. In the first study, androgynous faces with lowered eyebrows and tight lips (angry expressions) were more likely to be identified as male, and faces with smiles and raised eyebrows (expressions of happiness and fear) were often labeled feminine. The second study used male and female faces wearing expressions of happiness, anger, sadness, fear or a neutral expression. Overall, subjects were able to identify male faces more quickly than female faces, and female faces that expressed anger took the longest to identify.  

We are wired up to have different expectations for male and female faces and the emotions they express. Hess said that the same cues that make a face appear male – a high forehead, a square jaw and thicker eyebrows – have been linked to perceptions of dominance. Likewise, features that make a face appear female – a rounded, baby face with large eyes – have been linked to perceptions of the individual being approachable and warm. Male anger is seen as more intense than female anger while female happiness is seen as more intense than male happiness. "This difference in how the emotions and social traits of the two sexes are perceived could have significant implications for social interactions in a number of settings. Our research demonstrates that equivalent levels of anger are perceived as more intense when shown by men rather than women, and happiness as more intense when shown by women rather than men. It also suggests that it is less likely for men to be perceived as warm and caring and for women to be perceived as dominant.

So angry girls and happy guys aren't taken seriously. So what are the implications of these results for our daily lives? Should guys try harder to seem happy or not even bother to make the effort? Should women hold up cue cards saying things like "I am really angry now"? Or just start throwing dishes?"


Tracy Morgan Pissed Off Some Women In Australia | What Would Tyler Durden Do: "I hope that when “Sue” and the rest of the PG police stormed out, they were ushered into another theater, where the ghosts of Richard Pryor and Red Foxx were performing for the rest of eternity, and the doors were welded shut behind them."

Obama, Guantanamo, and the enduring national shame | Glenn Greenwald | Comment is free | guardian.co.uk: "The New York Times this morning deserves credit for publishing one of the most powerful Op-Eds you will ever read. I urge you to read it in its entirety: it's by Samir Naji al Hasan Moqbel, a Yemeni national who has been imprisoned at Guantánamo without charges of any kind for more than 11 years. He's one of the detainees participating in the escalating hunger strike to protest both horrible conditions and, particularly, the supreme injustice of being locked in a cage indefinitely without any evidence of wrongdoing presented or any opportunity to contest the accusations that have been made. The hunger strike escalated over the weekend when guards shot rubber bullets at some of the detainees and forced them into single cells..."

Saw this last week on TV.  Countering the dominant paradigm + she dated Superman [Dean Cain] years ago...
Gabby Reece: Women being submissive is 'a sign of strength' - TODAY.com: "In discussing her new book about her challenges as a mother and wife on TODAY Friday, former volleyball star and fitness advocate Gabrielle Reece said she believes women being submissive in a relationship is a sign of power rather than weakness. In “My Foot is Too Big for the Glass Slipper,” she writes that “to truly be feminine means being soft, receptive, and – look out, here it comes – submissive...”"
Another peal of feminism’s death knell: Gabriella Reece on the joys of being a submissive wife. | Sunshine Mary: "Gabriella Reece, 43, with her husband of 17 years, surfer Laird Hamilton, and their three daughters Look at Gabriella Reece, a former volleyball star turned model and fitness expert, and what do you notice about her appearance?  Has she cut her hair off into a mannish, middle aged mom-do?  Gained forty pounds?  Is she dressed sloppily?  Nope.  Notice her soft, long waves, healthy body, understated but lovely makeup and pretty dress..."

Meek is a Four Letter Word | On the Rock: "Gabrielle Reece is finding out first hand how people view the word submissive this week. She’s written a book about her marriage.  The comments in these articles (the few I read) are very interesting.  People are aghast that she would let her husband walk all over her (she’s a doormat!!), they are lauding her courage, they are saying how weak she is while saying in using different words that they are in a very similar marriage.  In short, opinions are all over the place.  The word submission is a dirty word and it elicits a fear in people of becoming a doormat and of giving up control (in their marriages, in their lives and in our society)."

I don't know what's happening here, but it seems magical.

The Boston bombing produces familiar and revealing reactions | Glenn Greenwald | Comment is free | guardian.co.uk: "One particularly illustrative example I happened to see yesterday was a re-tweet from Washington Examiner columnist David Freddoso, proclaiming: Idea of secondary bombs designed to kill the first responders is just sick. How does anyone become that evil?"

I don't disagree with that sentiment. But I'd bet a good amount of money that the person saying it - and the vast majority of other Americans - have no clue that targeting rescuers with "double-tap" attacks is precisely what the US now does with its drone program and other forms of militarism. If most Americans knew their government and military were doing this, would they react the same way as they did to yesterday's Boston attack: "Idea of secondary bombs designed to kill the first responders is just sick. How does anyone become that evil?" That's highly doubtful, and that's the point."

Vadering | Know Your Meme: "Vadering is a photo fad that involves two people recreating the Star Wars scene in which Darth Vader uses the Force to grab an opposing character in a choke hold."

What You Say:                                      What He Hears:                                                                    
“I don’t need a man.”                               “I don’t need or want you.
“I’m a princess.”                                       “I’m a high maintenance, royal pain in the ass.”
“I’m strong and independent.”                  ”I’m domineering and controlling.”
“I’m a challenge.”                                      ”I’m a nightmare.”
“I’m competitive.”                                     “We’re going to be fighting all the time.”
“I’m a brat.”                                                ”I’m really immature.”
“I like to party.”                                           “I’m a slut.”
“I’m hard to handle.”                                  ”The cops have to be called on me all the time.”
“My ex and I are just friends.”                   “My ex is still in the picture and wants me back.”
When you put a man in the dreaded Friendzone, don’t do it with the idea that some time down the road you’re going to be a couple. Men don’t like being Friendzoned and put on the back burner.
When you say, “Let’s just be friends.”
He hears: “I don’t find you attractive enough to have sex with, but I want you around to cry on your shoulder over other dudes I do bang who have mistreated me. In exchange for your strictly platonic devotion, we can gossip about shit I’m into, but you aren’t.”
  One of my girlfriends feels compelled to tell men on the first date how badly other men have treated her. She goes into painful detail. She tells the new man how he is going to have to work “extra hard” to win her over because she doesn’t trust, blah, blah. She thinks she’s communicating to him about her heartache, and that he needs to have patience and do all the pursuing.

But this is what a man thinks when she shares all this:  ”What’s wrong with her?”

The Boston bombing produces familiar and revealing reactions | Glenn Greenwald | Comment is free | guardian.co.uk: "The reaction to the Boston attack underscored, yet again, the utter meaninglessness of the word "terrorism". News outlets were seemingly scandalized that President Obama, in his initial remarks, did not use the words "terrorist attack" to describe the bombing. In response, the White House ran to the media to assure them that they considered it "terrorism". Fox News' Ed Henry quoted a "senior administration official" as saying this: "When multiple (explosive) devices go off that's an act of terrorism."

Is that what "terrorism" is? "When multiple (explosive) devices go off"? If so, that encompasses a great many things, including what the US does in the world on a very regular basis. Of course, the quest to know whether this was "terrorism" is really code for: "was this done by Muslims"? That's because, in US political discourse, "terrorism" has no real meaning other than: violence perpetrated by Muslims against the west. The reason there was such confusion and uncertainty about whether this was "terrorism" is because there is no clear and consistently applied definition of the term. At this point, it's little more than a term of emotionally manipulative propaganda. That's been proven over and over, and it was again yesterday."

The Boston bombing produces familiar and revealing reactions | Glenn Greenwald | Comment is free | guardian.co.uk: "The history of these types of attacks over the last decade has been clear and consistent: they are exploited to obtain new government powers, increase state surveillance, and take away individual liberties. On NBC with Brian Williams last night, Tom Brokaw decreed that this will happen again and instructed us that we must meekly submit it to it: "Everyone has to understand tonight that, beginning tomorrow morning early, there are going to be much tougher security considerations all across the country, and however exhausted we may be by that, we're going to have to learn to live with them, and get along and go forward, and not let them bring us to our knees. You'll remember last summer, how unhappy we were with the security at the Democratic and Republic conventions. Now I don't think we can raise those complaints after what happened in Boston.""

Friends helping friends. 

Things used to be different, apparently.

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