You should read this for 3/4/2018:
Art and Film
I happened to catch part of a NOVA special on tombs in the Himalayas, in the “Mustang” region of Nepal called Secrets of the Sky Tombs. I was intrigued by some of the prohibatory rituals intended to keep the dead from bothering the living, in that they were similar in some ways to the methods used to keep bog bodies in Europe from bothering the living. I found a paper by the principal researchers Margarita Gleba,Ina Vanden Berghe &Mark Aldenderfer. “Textile technology in Nepal in the 5th-7th centuries CE: the case of Samdzong.” STAR: Science and Technology of Archaeological Research. Vol. 2 no. 1, 2016. The paper analyzes silk fragments found at the site c. 2009 and later in subsequent expeditions, and theorizes about Nepal’s connection with the Silk Road, suggesting that it extended further south into Upper Mustang’s Samdzong region in Nepal’s Himalayan area.
Artist Transforms Found Stones Into Animals You Can Hold in the Palm of Your HandThese are beautiful, and charming.
Historical Markers for an Artist’s Fictional, Parallel Universe It is exactly what it sounds like; historica markers for an alternate universe. All it needs now is a wardrobe portal . . .
Books, Writing, and Language
Via Wired: Want To Make A Lie Seem True? Say It Again. And Again. And Again “Welcome to the “illusory truth effect,” a glitch in the human psyche that equates repetition with truth. Marketers and politicians are masters of manipulating this particular cognitive bias—which perhaps you have become more familiar with lately.”
Via TLS: What makes Jewish comedy Jewish?
In the latter half of the twentieth century, American comedy just was Jewish comedy, even if the Jewishness had to be tamped down to appease mainstream audiences.
Food and Drink
The Trump administration unleashed a flood of outrage earlier this month after unveiling a proposal to overhaul the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, formerly called food stamps. The plan would replace half the benefits people receive with boxed, nonperishable – not fresh – foods chosen by the government, not the people eating them.
Among those horrified at the thought: American Indians who recognized this as the same type of federal food assistance that tribes have historically received, with devastating implications for health.
History and Archaeology
Dating to between 3351 to 3017 BC, tattoos of animals and motifs have been discovered on two naturally mummified bodies from Egypt. Using infrared technology, figural tattoos of a wild bull and a sheep were identified on the upper arm of a male mummy, while linear and S-shaped motifs have been identified on the upper arm and shoulder of a female mummy; these are the oldest tattoos ever found on a female individual.
Pay It Forward and Make It Better
A Federal Court Just Ruled For Gay Rights In A Major Discrimination Case “The decision is a loss for the Justice Department, which argued that a 1964 civil rights law doesn’t protect gay workers.”
A federal appeals court on Monday ruled that a 1964 civil rights law bans anti-gay workplace discrimination. The decision rebukes the Trump administration — which had argued against a gay worker in the case — and hands progressives a win in their strategy to protect LGBT employees with a drumbeat of lawsuits.
But the most immediate and dramatic effect of the students’ anti-gun activism has come not in politics, but in business. Corporate America, or at least the segment with business ties to the National Rifle Association, is rapidly deciding that the association is toxic.
‘Speak your truth’: In wake of Parkland, colleges tell students protests won’t hurt their chance of admission “As a wave of protests against gun violence spread in high schools across the country, top universities reached out to reassure prospective students that breaking school rules for a principle won’t ruin their chance of attending.”
Science and Nature
When Scientists “Discover” What Indigenous People Have Known For Centuries When it supports their claims, Western scientists value what Traditional Knowledge has to offer. If not, they dismiss it
Spring is running 20 days early. It’s exactly what we expect, but it’s not good. It’s February, and the crocuses have already passed in Washington D.C. The cherry blossoms are opening.
The vaccine-autism myth is one chilling example of fraudulent science. February 28, 2018 marks the 20th anniversary of an infamous article published in the prestigious medical journal, The Lancet, in which Andrew Wakefield, a former British doctor, falsely linked the MMR (measles, mumps and rubella) vaccine to autism. The paper eventually was retracted by the co-authors and the journal. Wakefield was de-licensed by medical authorities for his deceit and “callous disregard” for children in his care.
Inside Atomwaffen As It Celebrates a Member for Allegedly Killing a Gay Jewish College Student “ProPublica obtained the chat logs of Atomwaffen, a notorious white supremacist group. When Samuel Woodward was charged with killing 19-year-old Blaze Bernstein last month in California, other Atomwaffen members cheered the death, concerned only that the group’s cover might have been blown.”
This is some serious undercover reporting.
Schools in Oregon Are Sending Unvaccinated Kids Home, Permanently, to Make a Point “It is very important for our students to be up-to-date with their immunizations to help protect their peers and prevent others from contracting illnesses, some of which could be fatal.”
The bill forbids broadband companies from blocking or slowing lawful internet traffic or selling fast lanes at a premium. It also requires broadband companies to publicly disclose their business practices “sufficient for consumers to make informed choices.”
Via National Geographic: Pictures Reveal the Isolated Lives of Japan’s Social Recluses “A photographer explores the hidden world of the hikikomori, and the human bonds that draw them out.”
Known as hikikomori, these are people, mainly men, who haven’t participated in society, or shown a desire to do so, for at least a year. They rely instead on their parents to take care of them. In 2016, the Japanese government census put the figure at 540,000 for people aged 15-39. But it could easily be double that number. Since many prefer to stay entirely hidden, they remain uncounted.
💩🔥💰 Trumpery 💩🔥💰
Amnesty International just officially declared Trump a human rights violator “President Trump takes actions that violate human rights at home and abroad.”
In March 2001, she was granted a green card in the elite EB-1 program, which was designed for renowned academic researchers, multinational business executives or those in other fields, such as Olympic athletes and Oscar-winning actors, who demonstrated “sustained national and international acclaim.”