Saturday, October 10, 2015

Comics. Still Awesome.

"But if numbers are being used to generate a national panic or to institute policies that may cause more harm than good, then we need to assess them as dispassionately as possible..."

What we talk about when we talk about rape - LA Times: "The Justice Department and the FBI have expanded the definition of rape that existed decades ago. Today, it is defined as forced penetration of any orifice with any part of the body or an object. Under that definition, rates of rape are about 3% to 4% of college women and a slightly higher percentage of women not in college...

But if you add all of the behaviors now considered sexual assault — which include any unwanted acts such as "forced kissing," "fondling" and "rubbing up against you in a sexual way, even if it is over your clothes" — the number rises to that now-famous 20%. That's the figure President Obama used in his news conference launching the Justice Department's crusade against the campus rape "epidemic." It is also close to the number reported in the Assn. of American Universities' latest survey of sexual assault on U.S. colleges... 

On one level, numbers shouldn't matter: Rape is ugly, it's serious and can have devastating consequences for its victims. But if numbers are being used to generate a national panic or to institute university policies that may cause more harm than good, then we need to assess them as dispassionately as possible, without being accused of being "rape cultured" or supporting perpetrators...

Should young women be encouraged to believe that a clumsy act of fondling or kissing is the same thing, emotionally or physically, as forced penetration? For people who believe that misogyny and sexual violence are widespread and entrenched, the answer is yes; 20% seems like the right number for the percentage of assault victims. The culture today, they argue, encourages young men to feel sexually entitled to take advantage of women who are inebriated or otherwise unable to consent; look at those frat guys chanting, "No means yes."

For others, 3% or 4% feels like a more accurate number, supporting their argument that claims of rape are exaggerated in a political climate that supports any allegation a woman makes, and that invites women to turn unpleasant or regretted sexual encounters into assault charges. The culture today, they say, encourages women to avoid taking responsibility for their part in sexual encounters. Look at the language we use when we blame men for "getting a woman drunk." "Getting"? What is she, an empty vessel with no ability to say she's had enough?"

Our challenge is to accept what is valid in both perspectives. We can vigorously pursue the goals of justice for rape victims and fairness for accused perpetrators. We can understand that many acts of sexual assault are violent, and appreciate the subtleties of sexual communication that can create mischief and misery...

Some of these encounters are unambiguously coerced, but many are not. Sex researchers repeatedly find that people rarely say directly what they mean, and they often don't mean what they say. They find it difficult to say what they dislike because they don't want to hurt the other person's feelings. They may think they want intercourse and then change their minds. They may think they don't want intercourse and change their minds. They are, in short, engaging in what social psychologist Deborah Davis calls a "dance of ambiguity." Through vagueness and indirection, each party's ego is protected in case the other says no. Indirection saves a lot of hurt feelings, but it also causes problems. The woman really thinks the man should have known to stop, and he really thinks she gave consent.

Davis and her colleagues Guillermo Villalobos and Richard Leo have suggested that the primary reason for the many "he said/she said" reports that make the news is not that one side is lying. Rather, each partner is providing "honest false testimony" about what happened between them. Both parties believe they are telling the truth, but one or both may be wrong because of the unreliability of memory and perception, and because both are motivated to justify their actions...

By far, the most well-traveled pathway from uncomfortable sexual negotiations to honest false testimony is alcohol. For some women, alcohol is the solution to the sex decision: If they are inebriated, they haven't said yes, and if they haven't explicitly said yes, no one can call them  sluts. But for both parties, alcohol significantly impairs the cognitive interpretation of the other person's behavior. Men who are drunk are less likely to interpret nonconsent messages accurately, and women who are drunk convey less emphatic signs of refusal. And alcohol severely impairs both partners' memory of what actually happened...

When trying to reduce sexual assault, labeling all forms of sexual misconduct, including unwanted touches and sloppy kisses, as rape is alarmist and unhelpful. We need to draw distinctions between behavior that is criminal, behavior that is stupid and behavior that results from the dance of ambiguity."

"For every 167 women in four-year colleges, there were only 100 men."

Michelle Obama’s misguided girl power agenda | New York Post: "In the developing world it is true that girls are prevented from getting an education. They are too poor, their families need them to carry water to and from their homes, they have no sanitary facilities at school or there are Islamist lunatics trying to kill them or kidnap them when they go to school. But the girls in America are in an entirely different situation. In 2013, according to the Current Population Survey, 25- to 34-year-old women were 21 percent more likely to have a college degree than men and 48 percent more likely to have finished graduate school...

Even the most disadvantaged girls are more likely to get an education here than boys from similar circumstances. Richard Whitmire, author of “Why Boys Fail,” has argued that our discussions about the racial achievement gap and even the effects of poverty on educational attainment have masked the biggest disparities, which are between girls and boys. In an interview in the magazine Education Next, Whitmire cites a 2009 study by the Center for Labor Market Studies at Northeastern University that tracked the students who graduated from Boston public schools. For every 167 women in four-year colleges, there were only 100 men. But poverty wasn’t the problem — all the kids were coming from the same neighborhoods. “The study found that black females were five percentage points more likely to pursue further study after high school, including community colleges, four-year colleges and technical or vocational schools, than white males,” notes Whitmire. All of which is to say that girls in America don’t need a pep talk from the first lady anymore than, say, boys do."

The CIA's "benign cover-up." Say it with me, 'back and to the left.'

JFK Assassination: The Spy Chief Who Lied - POLITICO Magazine: "Half a century after JFK’s death, in a once-secret report written in 2013 by the CIA’s top in-house historian and quietly declassified last fall, the spy agency acknowledges what others were convinced of long ago: that McCone and other senior CIA officials were “complicit” in keeping “incendiary” information from the Warren Commission...

According to the report by CIA historian David Robarge, McCone, who died in 1991, was at the heart of a “benign cover-up” at the spy agency, intended to keep the commission focused on “what the Agency believed at the time was the ‘best truth’—that Lee Harvey Oswald, for as yet undetermined motives, had acted alone in killing John Kennedy.” The most important information that McCone withheld from the commission in its 1964 investigation, the report found, was the existence, for years, of CIA plots to assassinate Castro, some of which put the CIA in cahoots with the Mafia. Without this information, the commission never even knew to ask the question of whether Oswald had accomplices in Cuba or elsewhere who wanted Kennedy dead in retaliation for the Castro plots...

Initially stamped “SECRET/NOFORN,” meaning it was not to be shared outside the agency or with foreign governments, Robarge’s report was originally published as an article in the CIA’s classified internal magazine, Studies in Intelligence, in September 2013, to mark the 50th anniversary of the Kennedy assassination. The article, drawn from a still-classified 2005 biography of McCone written by Robarge, was declassified quietly last fall and is now available on the website of The George Washington University’s National Security Archive. In a statement to POLITICO, the CIA said it decided to declassify the report “to highlight misconceptions about the CIA’s connection to JFK’s assassination,” including the still-popular conspiracy theory that the spy agency was somehow behind the assassination...

Robarge’s article says that McCone, quickly convinced after the assassination that Oswald had acted alone and that there was no foreign conspiracy involving Cuba or the Soviet Union, directed the agency to provide only “passive, reactive and selective” assistance to the Warren Commission. This portrait of McCone suggests that he was much more hands-on in the CIA’s dealings with the commission—and in the agency’s post-assassination scrutiny of Oswald’s past—than had previously been known. The report quotes another senior CIA official, who heard McCone say that he intended to “handle the whole (commission) business myself, directly.”

The report identifies other tantalizing information that McCone did not reveal to the commission, including evidence that the CIA might somehow have been in communication with Oswald before 1963 and that the spy agency had secretly monitored Oswald’s mail after he attempted to defect to the Soviet Union in 1959. The CIA mail-opening program, which was later determined to have been blatantly illegal, had the code name HTLINGUAL. “It would be surprising if the DCI [director of central intelligence] were not told about the program” after the Kennedy assassination, the report reads. “If not, his subordinates deceived him. If he did know about HTLINGUAL reporting on Oswald, he was not being forthright with the commission—presumably to protect an operation that was highly compartmented and, if disclosed, sure to arouse much controversy.”"

And I stand by what I wrote years ago - Relaxed Focus: The main thing that convinces me JFK's assassination was a conspiracy.: "The sniper's nest is on the upper left side of the Texas Schoolbook Depository, facing down Houston St.  Kennedy is shot after the turn onto Elm St is made and proceeding away from the Depository.  Even with my minimal firearms training at the Academy and in the Marines, the story doesn't add up. No, the supposed shot that Oswald made isn't an impossible one [though I can't speak to the "X number of shots in Y number of seconds" theories] but here's what makes absolutely no sense at all - and you can see it on the map above. 

From a shooter's perspective, to wait until he's driven past you, moving away... when you've got a perfect headshot/killshot as the car makes the slow right turn onto and proceeds down Houston St makes no sense whatsover. Waiting till he's gone past you only makes sense if you're coordinating fire with other shooters and moving the target into a killzone - the 'triangulation of fire' theory you hear about from folks who posit another shooter on the Grassy Knoll or elsewhere."

If you're the only shooter and you're in the School Book Depository, you absolutely take the shot when the car is on Houston.  Even if they try to accelerate out of the kill zone, they're driving right to you and are easy pickings.

Friday, October 09, 2015

" soon as you realize that the model you've been looking at maybe isn't so firm as you thought... Then you're free."

President Obama: Wizard or Failure? | Scott Adams Blog: "Russia is moving into Old Syria. Iran already owns the parts of Old Iraq that ISIS and the Kurds do not. Israel fears that the nuclear deal with Iran is a mistake of unthinkable proportions. The data suggests that President Obama is a total failure when it comes to the Middle East. Or… he is one of the most gifted wizards of persuasion and strategy our generation has ever seen. The data fits both interpretations. You already know the interpretation that says Obama failed. Allow me to give you another interpretation – one that isn’t necessarily true – but happens to fit the data...

The Master Wizard filter says that President Obama – magnificent bastard and Commander in Chief – just suckered Russia and Iran into the quicksand while taking The United States out of an endless and unwinnable fight. And … doomed ISIS in the process. The United States can’t defeat ISIS militarily because doing so would require killing too many civilians. Russia and Iran will have fewer problems in that regard because they control their media and their leaders don’t need to ask permission. And let’s say you want to build a virtual wall around ISIS to contain them. You would need a substantial military power to guard the coast. You need Russia.  Right where they are deploying. The Master Wizard filter says President Obama has a winning plan for eradicating ISIS at the lowest cost for Americans. America’s frenemies have now encircled ISIS, and the American media with their freedom of the press will not be there to watch what happens next. ISIS is reportedly planting landmines around captured cities to keep the civilian population from escaping. They expected the United States to avoid bombing population centers.  They were right. But they they did not expect the United States to turn over the fight to Russia and Iran. ISIS is done. "

Dilbert's Scott Adams on Politics, Philosophy, Hypnosis, and "Failing Towards Success" - ""You can defend an entirely different view of the world using the same data that's used to defend the standard model. So whenever I can do that, I'm so there," says Scott Adams. "Because as soon as you realize that the model you've been looking at maybe isn't so firm as you thought... Then you're free.""

"...having more guns in circulation has not led to higher rates of gun murders... which is one of the reasons why popular sentiment has not turned against gun rights.

Here It Comes: Wash Post Writer Calls for "A Gun-Free Society" - Hit & Run : "...what is the status quo with guns? Over the past several decades at least, most states have liberalized their gun laws. It's easier to own guns, generally, and to carry them in a wider variety of circumstances, too. And over the same time period—and this is key—gun violence has declined to historic lows. In other words, the status quo, while far from perfect (as recent mass shootings and crime-wave reports from Chicago and other cities attest), is good and getting better. In fact, according the most recent government statistics, violent crime, a category including murder, rape, and armed robbery, is far below what it was in the mid-1990s. Pew Research and others have documented this (see accompanying charts). The plain fact is that having more guns in circulation has not led to higher rates of gun murders. People get that, which is one of the reasons why popular sentiment has not turned against gun rights.
...Such data will not end the suffering and grieving of parents and loved ones in Oregon who were touched by the latest shooting. But it should help people in the media and the government understand that they are overreacting when they inveigh that the only way forward is via zero-tolerance for guns. Zero-tolerance has never worked in any other context and the idea that gun prohibition in a country as large and gun-friendly as America (like it or not) is several steps past delusional."

Thursday, October 08, 2015

"No, no, relax. It's alright. I speak Irish."

"...Fitz is the new Wes."

"Nothing made me. I made me."

"You're Sherlock Holmes.  Wear the damn hat."


"There’s some currently fashionable dogma out there that “we found some starch stuck in a dead guy’s teeth, so cavemen definitely ate lots of carbs..."

ChAoS & PAIN: Paleotards Are Doing It Wrong, Part Quatre: "...but the condition of the teeth disprove that: carb-heavy diets = tooth decay in a land without toothbrushes and fluoridated toothpaste, and Paleolithic teeth, including the ones found with starch stuck in them, are uniformly excellent.  The single exception: someone found a place they were eating lots of acorns in the almost-Neolithic (15 KYa = 15,000 years ago) and they indeed had shitty teeth.  Unlike every other “starch in teeth” site, they also found the remains of woven baskets for storing those acorns: there’s a world of difference between “we ate it because it was on the ground for a few days and we’re hungry” and “we gather it, store it, and live off it for a substantial part of the year.” The “starch in teeth” carb apologists also neglect to note that Paleolithic digs often contain thousands of handaxes, scrapers, flakes, and other meat-processing tools, and thousands of animal bones. (Example: 18,500 stone artifacts.)  And the wide variation in salivary amylase gene copy number between different races and cultures of modern humans (Perry 2007) suggests that the adaptation to high-starch diets is both very recent and incomplete" (Stanton).

..Lastly, it should be mentioned that pretty much everyone who slams into the weights like a rhino into a Land Rover on safari modifies whatever paleo diet they've chosen in some way.  I mentioned I included protein shakes, one flatbread a day, and weekly cheat meals, though I still consdered my diet to be paleo.  That's what Robb Wolf refers to as your "paleo percentage." According to a writer for Robb's website, "Logically, we all ‘get’ what these paleo percentages mean, right? It’s not rocket science. You eat clean paleo (this means no paleo pancakes, paleo cookies, or other hybrid paleo creations that are showing up on some Paleo cooking blogs)a given percent of the time (like 80 or 90) and then the other 10-20 percent of the time you enjoy some non-sanctioned deliciousness. That’s really all there is to it. Everybody got that" (Kubal). 

I might also mention that I chug Diet Coke, or as it was called in Vienna "Coke Lite", like a man dying of dehydration, so no matter what paleo diet type you choose, remember that you're a human being living in the Modern Era and none of the stuff you eat will actually be Paleolithic, so just don't take yourself as seriously as an Evangelical Christian who accidentally wandered into a sex toy shop and just eat as closely to the diet of your choice as possible.  Pick the type of diet that suits your goals and personal food preferences and you'll be solid. So there you have it- Paleolithic dieting broken down like a fat kid in gym class.  As Wolf's famous for saying "Eat to live, don't live to eat."  Just don't take this shit too seriously- YOLO, bitches."

“There is no scientific basis for current dietary advice regarding dairy... Fears [about whole milk] are not supported by evidence."

Think for yourself and question authority.  Always do your own research.  Never blindly accept government 'recommendations.'  Synthesize information.  For decades, the government steered millions away from whole milk. Was that wrong? - The Washington Post: "The “campaign to reduce fat in the diet has had some pretty disastrous consequences,”  Walter Willett, dean of the nutrition department at the Harvard School of Public Health has said. “With more fat-free products than ever, Americans got fatter.” Best-sellers such as "Good Calories, Bad Calories" by Gary Taubes and "Big Fat Surprise" by Nina Teicholz went further in their critique of the government position. "There's a large body of scientific literature to show that a high-carb diet, as recommended by the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, provokes a number of heart-disease risk factors," said Teicholz, whose critique of the guidelines appears in a recent issue of the British Medical Journal...

 "“There is no scientific basis for current dietary advice regarding dairy,” Benatar said. “Fears [about whole milk] are not supported by evidence. The message that it is okay to have whole fat food, including whole fat milk, is slowly seeping into consciousness. But there is always a lag between evidence and changes in attitude.”"

Training - "People who live in the past are weak and have no place here."

10/8 - stretch, press [PR 175 w/belt], chins, dips


Be Healthy, Be Happy!: "I posted a #TransformationTuesday with the top 2 photos 56 weeks ago & I figured it was time for a lil update! Regardless of where you’re at on your health & fitness journey you’re capable of sculpting your body and achieving your goals, whatever they may be. Work hard, be consistent, make sure you’re training & eating for your goals, and you’ll get there in time!"

"Gun control has no significant impact on murder rates. Removing firearms does not typically create massive lawlessness. It is a moot point."

The facts that neither side wants to admit about gun control | The Fifth Column: "The National Rifle Association (NRA) would have you believe that guns stop murders. The gun control lobby would have you believe that gun control reduces murders. They are both wrong. Gun bans have always had the same effect once implemented: none. They do not create a (sustained) period of increased murders, nor do they reduce the rate of homicides. The gun control crowd is currently stomping their feet and screaming “No, it reduces violence! I’ve seen the statistics.” What you probably saw were studies that point to reduced instances of “gun murders,” not murder. The pro-gun crowd is screaming that gun bans cause crime. At least this is grounded in reality. Typically, there is a spike in murders immediately after a ban, but it is short lived...

Plain and simple. Gun control has no significant impact on murder rates. Removing firearms does not typically create massive lawlessness. It is a moot point. These figures aren’t a secret. Why would the governments of these nations want a disarmed populace? "

Wednesday, October 07, 2015

Training - "Nothing is guaranteed, but there’s only one way to find out."

10/7 - squats [PR 325 w/belt], leg raise, single leg press, seated calf raise, calf press, chins

This trait is by far the most irritating. If you and I are at a bar, and you’re telling me a tale of mediocrity, and you justify your lack of greatness by saying “it is was it is” I’m going to fucking Diamond Cut you hard. Life is ripe with opportunity. Will taking advantage of that opportunity help you do something great? Nothing is guaranteed, but there’s only one way to find out."