Elsewhere for December 3, 2017

You should read this for 12/3/2017:

Books, Writing, and Language

Jane Austen, Literary Icon and . . . Home Brewer? “Those who’ve noticed that Austen’s characters often have a drink in hand may not know it was her love of brewing beer that was spilling over into her work.”

Why So Many Adults Love Young-Adult Literature “Over half of today’s YA readers are over the age of 18.”


It started as a tax cut; now it could change American life

The List of Shame “52 Senate Republicns just voted for a tax scam bit that will trigger $400 billion in cuts to Medicate ofer the next 10 years, all to pay for a MASSIVE tax giveaway to the super wealthy.”

51 GOP Republican SenatorsVoted to gut Medicare, Screw over Students, make it even harder to buy a house or save for retirement, and to line the pockets of the super rich. These people are not interested in your welfare; they are lining their pockets by robbing yours.

Women’s Work

Elizabeth Weil on Raising A Teenage Daughter With Comments And Corrections By Hannah W Duane, her teenager

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Elsewhere for November 11, 2017

You should read this for 11/11/2017:

For 98 years, Americans have remembered those who served our country in uniform on 11 November – first as Armistice Day, and then, since 1954 as Veterans Day.  

Art and Film

Watch an Oil Painting Instantly Lose 200 Years of Grimy Varnish “Fine art is often coated with varnish for the same reason furniture is: it provides a protective barrier to the elements. But varnish turns yellow over time, and an even less attractive color after a few centuries—which is why art restoration experts need to strip old varnish off and reapply it when a painting becomes unsightly.”

Photoshop Experts Hello Kitty-fy Masculine Superheroes With Sparkly Pink Costumes

Found: A Dead Bug in a Van Gogh Painting 

Books, Writing, and Language

“Unbury the Future”: Martha Wells’ Full Speech from the 2017 World Fantasy Awards

Food and Drink

To Get Calcium, Navajos Burn Juniper Branches To Eat The Ash

History and Archaeology

Found: A Rare Carved Stone That Could Rewrite Art History “A miniature masterpiece from the Greek tomb of the “Griffin Warrior.”

A part of Hadrian’s Wall has been found in Newcastle city centre


Killing the medical expense deduction will hit the middle class — and hard “For them it’s not a once-in-a-lifetime tax break, but a provision that enables them to survive financially year after year. It wouldn’t give them more flexibility to use their paychecks, but would wipe out much of their income.”

Resignation syndrome: Sweden’s mystery illness

Maine Governor Paul LePage Refuses to Implement Medicaid Expansion After Ballot Measure Wins

LePage, who is term-limited out of office next year, previously vetoed five Medicaid expansion bills passed by the state’s legislature. Frustrated by inaction, Maineiacs gathered the required signatures to put the referendum on Tuesday’s ballot.

Pay It Forward and Make It Better

Send a girl to school in Afghanistan, Congo or Lebanon for a year for a donation of $59.00. A great gift for someone who’s hard to shop for, from Rescue.org.

Science and Technology

Why This Fungus Has Over 20,000 Sexes

Where we have two traditionally recognized genders, male and female, some species of fungi can have thousands of sexes. It sounds confusing, but it’s actually helpful — with so many variations, the fungi can mate with nearly every individual of their species they meet.

Women’s Work

Jane Goodall, Redux

Goodall was a young, photogenic woman with a refined English accent, which she used to full effect in the voiceovers of her documentaries. Perhaps those factors coupled with her having no Ph.D or even a college degree meant her primate discoveries would not be taken seriously by many scientists.

But though she lacked scientific training, she was still making important discoveries.

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Elsewhere for July 30, 2017

You should read this for 7/30/2017:

Predatory Journals Hit By ‘Star Wars’ Sting

Via NPR: You Asked, We Answered: What Happened to the People in That N.H. Ghost Town?

Four Rice Boys Captured by Native Americans in 1704; Three Rice Boys Decide To Stay

A Barred owl, crows, and mobbing.

CTE was nearly ubiquitous among former NFL players who donated their brains to science “At a Boston University program that investigates the trauma-linked brain disease, researchers found that, of 111 former players for the National Football League who donated their brains for post-mortem examination, 110 bore the distinctive tangles, plaques and protein clumps now recognized as the neural hallmarks of CTE.” CRE or  chronic traumatic encephalopathy is usually associated with repeated blows to the head.

Alt-right commentator claims Romans weren’t ethnically diverse, gets owned by actual historian I’m beyond fed up with this kind of thing.

Who Was She? A Dna Test Only Opened New Mysteries.

💩🔥💰 Trumpery 💩🔥💰

Trump’s Mistake at the Boy Scout Jamboree “The president addressed the quadrennial gathering like a campaign rally.” He also talked about playboy millionaires, parties, gambling, yachts “hot women” and exhorted Boy Scouts to boo for former Scout President Obama

A White House Official Just Admitted The Real Reason For Trump’s Transgender Military Ban But that’s only part of it; this is the reason. “House Republicans were planning to pass a spending bill stacked with his campaign promises, including money to build his border wall with Mexico. But an internal House Republican fight over transgender troops was threatening to blow up the bill. And House GOP insiders feared they might not have the votes to pass the legislation because defense hawks wanted a ban on Pentagon-funded sex reassignment operations — something GOP leaders wouldn’t give them.” And here’s a perfect response: A Top Colonel Just Responded To Trump’s Transgender Ban By Calling Out His Entire Family.

Anthony Scaramucci Called Me to Unload About White House Leakers, Reince Priebus, and Steve Bannon He started by threatening to fire the entire White House communications staff. It escalated from there.

Elsewhere for July 9, 2017

You should read this for 7/9/2017:

Thomas Jefferson’s Enslaved Mistress Sally Hemings’ Living Quarters FoundThomas Jefferson’s Enslaved Mistress Sally Hemings’ Living Quarters Found “ Archeologists have excavated an area of Thomas Jefferson’s Monticello mansion that has astounded even the most experienced social scientists: The living quarters of Sally Hemings, the enslaved mistress of Jefferson, who, historians believe, gave birth to six of Jefferson’s children.”

Justice Department’s Corporate Crime Watchdog Resigns, Saying Trump Makes It Impossible To Do Job “One of the Justice Department’s top corporate crime watchdogs has resigned, declaring that she cannot enforce ethics laws against companies while, she asserts, her own bosses in the Trump administration have been engaging in conduct that she said she would never tolerate in corporations.

Hui Chen — a former Pfizer and Microsoft lawyer who also was a federal prosecutor — had been the department’s compliance counsel. She left the department in June and broke her silence about her move in a recent LinkedIn post that sounded an alarm about the Trump administration’s behavior.”

No, NASA is not hiding kidnapped children on Mars “The situation for human beings on Mars is dire, and not just because the red planet’s atmosphere is mostly carbon dioxide and the average temperature is -81 degrees. There’s also the issue of the child-trafficking ring operating in secret on the planet 33.9 million miles from earth, according to a guest on the Alex Jones Show.”

According to a lawsuit (PDF) filed Wednesday by the U.S. Department of Justice, craft retailer Hobby Lobby illegally imported thousands of Iraqi artifacts, intentionally mislabeled them and lied about their origins. “According to a lawsuit (PDF) filed Wednesday by the U.S. Department of Justice, craft retailer Hobby Lobby illegally imported thousands of Iraqi artifacts, intentionally mislabeled them and lied about their origins.” See also The Atlantic: Hobby Lobby Purchased Thousands of Ancient Artifacts Smuggled Out of Iraq. Keep in mind that the money they paid for their stolen loot likely funded terrorists. And they’re looted, so there’s no context for them, no provenance, no record of what goes with what, and what level and era they’re from in terms of the actual site or sites.

Via NPR: Why You Should Think Twice About Those DNA-By-Mail Results “‘Race,’ Marks writes, ‘is not the discovery of difference; it is the imposition of difference.’ Inequality comes about because of unequal conditions imposed upon different groups of people through economic and cultural forces.”

Via The New York Times: Did Amelia Earhart Survive? A Found Photo Offers a Theory, but No Proof The photo, which History said was found in the National Archives by a retired federal agent named Les Kinney, appears to show a tall, trousers-wearing, short-haired woman seated on a dock in Jaluit, an atoll in the Marshall Islands, with her back to the camera.
It also appears to show Mr. Noonan [Earhart’s navigator] and maybe even the Electra itself, on a barge off in the distance.

Mexican Flourless Chocolate Cake

💩🔥💰 Trumpery 💩🔥💰

💩🔥💰 has a plaque at his golf course commemorating the æriver of blood” from an American Civil War battle that never actually happened.

NPR Tweeted Declaration Of Independence, And Trump Supporters Flipped Out.

Elsewhere for June 11, 2017

You should read this for 6/11/2017:

Tim O’Reilly via Medium: Do More! What Amazon Teaches Us About AI and the “Jobless Future”

Education Secretary Betsy DeVos exposes her ignorance in front of Congress: What we just learned from Betsy DeVos’s painful appearance before Congress “DeVos said Tuesday on Capitol Hill that she won’t offer protections to ensure that public money is not used by for-profit education companies to make their owners rich.

She also said that private schools accepting federal funds in a voucher program would have to follow federal laws but would not promise to protect LGBTQ or other students from discrimination if the law on the issue is foggy.”

Muslim and Latino communities in Southern California mix during Ramadan ““Taco Trucks at Every Mosque,’ is about building community during an administration that really has tried to break our spirit with the Muslim ban and the building of the border wall and separating our families and instilling fear.”

More bad news for Devos: Senators accuse DeVos of ‘quick about-face’ on climate change “A conservative think tank that does not believe in human-induced climate change has been sending to hundreds of thousands of K-12 and college science teachers materials that reject basic principles on which nearly all climate scientists agree — and now, some U.S. senators are asking Education Secretary Betsy DeVos whether staff members in her department have anything to do with it.”

Harvard yanks acceptances from at least 10 students — and everybody has an opinion “In the group, students sent each other memes and other images mocking sexual assault, the Holocaust, and the deaths of children, according to screenshots of the chat obtained by The Crimson. Some of the messages joked that abusing children was sexually arousing, while others had punchlines directed at specific ethnic or racial groups. One called the hypothetical hanging of a Mexican child “piñata time.”

Homemade Ricotta Cheese

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Elsewhere for March 26, 2017

You should read this for 3/26/2017: Education, Stonewall isn’t going to be forgotten, queers are here to stay, Easter Island has lessons to teach, roses are survivors and so are you, St. Joseph knew a thing or two about families, and apparently, pastry, and 💩🔥💰 is  . . . well. You go read the stuff behind the wall.

Hat tip to Bronwen (thanks!): Mike Taylor “ Every attempt to manage academia makes it worse” I love the takeaway at the end of the post; because it’s true, and it works.

Read Senator Patty Murray’s memo about the critical importance of public Education “The Trump Administration and some in Congress are pursuing an education agenda under the guise of providing students and families with so-called ‘school choice.”’ Though, on its face, this promise may sound appealing, in reality, this so-called answer doesn’t work for students and families for a number of critical reasons: It ignores the needs of students in rural areas without private school options, ignores the threats posed to students with disabilities and students who may face discrimination, and ignores the parents who believe in their communities and want their children to be able to attend strong public schools in their neighborhood. In other words, it is a false choice. The only true student and family agenda is one that delivers on the idea that every child, parent, and family should have the choice to attend a high-quality public school.”

A biographical essay on Sylvia Rivera, one of the people in front at Stonewall: “The crowd, according to witness Titus Montalvo, was 70 percent African American and Puerto Rican, and fronted in part by trans men and women, a fact that Rivera emphasized at every opportunity. ‘We were the frontliners,’ Rivera later told interviewers. “We didn’t take no shit from nobody,’ she explained. ‘We had nothing to lose.’”

The natives of Easter Island found paradise, and then destroyed it “For most of Easter’s inhabited history, deforestation was relatively gradual, and the people fell victim to “creeping normality,” gradual change that would be considered unacceptable if it happened all at once.” There’s good reason to loo at the Neolithic and early Medieval landscape of Ireland vs Ireland now and think of this story. As a species, we need to stop being such radical consumers and emphasize restoration and preservation, though it’s too late for climate change, we can mitigate.

Via Southern Living: The Rose That Survived Katrina

Zeppole di San Giuseppe (St. Joseph’s Day Traditional Italian Pastries)These are good, and more fun if you make them with friends using an assembly line approach.

💩🔥💰 Trumpery 💩🔥💰

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Elsewhere for March 19, 2017

You should read this for 3/19/2017:

Or see this

Cornell mathematician Steven Strogatz writing for The New Yorker on Why Pi Matters This is well-written, to-the-point, fascinating and understandable discussion regarding why, really, Pi matters. I love this: “Pi is inescapable because cycles are the temporal cousins of circles; they are to time as circles are to space. Pi is at the heart of both.”

Via The New York Times Simple Pleasure, American Style On the history of the humble, and increasingly decadent, brownie. I note, by the way, that apparently the brownie may have originated in Bangor, Maine, the land of the Whoopie pie.

Women in Business: The Silent Menace

A court’s decision in a Maine labor dispute hinges on the absence of an Oxford comma. Let this be a lesson to all of us, including my parents, Ayn Rand, and God.

Via Forbes: Unspeakable Realities Block Universal Health Coverage In The US

Dolly Parton’s recipe for Walnut pie

💩🔥💰 Trumpery 💩🔥💰

The top Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee suggested Thursday President 💩🔥💰 disclosed classified information during a Fox News interview the night before.Rep. Adam Schiff

See also Slate’s Oops, he did it again: Donald 💩🔥💰 just can’t stop himself from blurting out state secrets.

Angela Merkel Just Fact Shamed 💩🔥💰 About the One Thing he’s Supposed to Know If you’re not familiar with German’s Chanceller, Angela Merkel, she’s totally awesome.

Elsewhere for February 18, 2017

You should read this for 2/19/2017 :An encouraging thought, life in crystal, of the making of ebooks there is no end; we just need a better way to read, stories with Picts, and twice-baked cookies.

Green Shoots (even in the Whitehouse

Via The Christian Science Monitor: Microbes that once slumbered inside giant crystals in a Mexican cave are alive and well, according to NASA scientists.

Michael Cohen via TidBITS on The State of iBooks in Early 2017For those of us who love ebooks, the iBooks app is a little bit of heartbreak.

Via Past Horizons: Facial reconstruction of Pictish man brutally murdered 1,400 years ago. Writers: There’s a story in this story.

Via Williams Sonoma Hazelnut and Dried Cherry Biscotti


Federal Elections Commmissioner Ellen Weintraub asks for proof regarding 💩🔥💰’s allegations of wide-spread voter fraud. You can see Weintraub’s letter here. More from NPR: 💩🔥💰 Adviser Repeats Baseless Claims Of Voter Fraud In New Hampshire. It’s pretty hard to commit voter fraud in a state where most of the polling places have been staffed by the same people for years, and everyone know’s everyone because they all went to school together. Just sayin’, as a native Granite Stater, I call foul.

The Spy Revolt Against Trump Begins

Justice Department warned White House that Flynn could be vulnerable to Russian blackmail

Elsewhere for February 11, 2017

You should read this for 2/12/2017: Compassionate Canadians, Looting Qumranians, Linguistically undermining evil, Bots fight back, She Persists, and Pho

Quebec City Imam’s Profoundly Magnanimous Eulogy Includes White Gunman in List of Victims

Excavations in a cave on the cliffs west of Qumran Prove that Dead Sea scrolls from the Second Temple period, were hidden in the cave, and were looted in the middle of the last century.

I Am a Priest, and This is Why I’m Pro-Choice

Great Advice from George Lakoff about CopingVia George Lakoff, UC Berkeley cognitive linguist; see also George Lakoff: Progressives Need to Use Language That Reflects Moral Values

Angry programmer sends army of bots after Windows Support scammers

Senator Elizabeth Warren silenced for reading 1986 letter from Coretta Scott King, sent in opposition to Session’s judicial appointment. Responses from her male colleagues: Sen. Lindsey Graham: “Silencing Warren was ‘long overdue” and Sen. Orrin Hatch: “Warren shouldn’t criticize Sessions, should think of his wife”, but Senators Tom Udall, Jeff Merkley, Sherrod Brown and Bernie Sanders all read the letter without interruption. King’s letter is here; the letter notes regarding Jeff Sessions that

Anyone who has used the power of his office as United States Attorney to intimidate and chill the free exercise of the ballot by citizens should not be elevated to our courts,” King wrote. “Mr. Sessions has used the awesome powers of his office in a shabby attempt to intimidate and frighten elderly black voters.

Via Etymons: Dormouse

Quick Chicken Pho from Andrea Nguyen via Emma Christensen from Simply Recipes.

💩🔥💰 Trumpery 💩🔥💰

Despite Criticism Of Claims, 💩🔥💰 Seeks Investigation Into Voter Fraud “[💩🔥💰] and the White House have cited Becker’s report repeatedly to back claims that fraud is rampant. But Becker said that’s not at all what his study found, and neither have numerous other investigations, including one by the Justice Department under former President George W. Bush.”

Who is the judge who stopped 💩🔥💰’s] travel ban?

From Sarah Cooper via Medium: The Laugh Track is Tricking America“The clapping and laughing you hear in both instances are [his] own people, who initiate and get the crowd to follow. They are sycophants who he brings to cheer him on and make it seem like what he’s saying is being well-received. And it’s working.”

They Rethink Tactics After Stumbles “But for the moment, Mr. Bannon remains the president’s dominant adviser, despite 💩🔥💰’ anger that he was not fully briefed on details of the executive order he signed giving his chief strategist a seat on the National Security Council, a greater source of frustration to the president than the fallout from the travel ban.”

Transition email shows initial effort to oust all inspectors general“Rep. Elijah E. Cummings (D-Md), the ranking member of the House Oversight Committee, said that “this email demonstrates that these calls were not isolated incidents.” He added, “Whoever approved these calls had absolutely horrendous judgment and should not be allowed anywhere near the reins of power.”

Ordinary Americans carried out inhumane acts for Him“At Kennedy Airport, still other federal employees detained and handcuffed a 65-year-old woman traveling from Qatar to visit her son, who is a U.S. citizen and serviceman stationed at Fort Bragg, N.C. The woman was held for more than 33 hours, according to the New York Times, and denied use of a wheelchair.” This is how it begins; it ends with more camps and prisons for citizens and innocents.

California Farmers Backed [💩🔥💰], but Now Fear Losing Field Workers“California farmers could lose workers, many of whom are unauthorized, if [his] immigration promises come to pass.”