Sunday, October 30, 2016

Day of the Dead: Setting MEdia DragonS For Failure

“If you are the anvil, be patient. If you are the hammer; strike.”
~ a son of a carpenter

“Once we accept our limits, we go beyond them ...
~ Albert Einstein

Charles Wolf Jr., a leading economist and founding dean of what is now the Pardee RAND Graduate School who was regarded as one of the intellectual founders of modern policy analysis, has died. He was 92... Peter Boettke on Bob Tollison

In the first light of dawn, photographer Mats Andersson used black and white to capture the melancholy moment following the death of this Eurasian Pygmy Owl’s partner. The pair had accompanied Andersson on his daily walks through the forest during the early spring. “The owl’s resting posture reflected my sadness for its lost companion,” he says
An owl in mourning ...

Sharbat Gula, 20 years later (presently detained in Pakistan). Just haunting.
Just haunting

Peter Thiel’s Politics Become a Deal-Killer in Silicon Valley Bloomberg

Halloween #ScaryStoriesIn5Words: You Have To Teach Tax


You could not write a joke as good as Joe Hockey.

He really takes the cake.
This is the guy who, as treasurer, exhorted Australians to be “lifters not leaners.” Who riffed on the poor not being bothered by fuel taxes since they don’t own cars and can’t go anywhere, anyway. Who lectured the rest of us about the “end of the age of entitlement’’ – as if it’s our fault the Federal budget is borked.
Age of entitlement isn’t over for Joe Hockey who bills taxpayers for babysitters

Philip Roth  Gives His Book Collection To The Newark Public Library

Mr. Roth’s library, some 4,000 volumes, is now stored mostly at his house in northwest Connecticut, where it has more or less taken over the premises. A room at the back of the house has been given over to nonfiction. It has library shelves, library lighting — everything except a librarian, Mr. Roth said recently on the phone from his New York apartment.

Matt Trueman: “She’s clearly been pushed, but it’s the speed that’s so shocking. The decision comes at the end of her very first season … Rice has challenged a hell of a lot in a short space of time – too much, too soon it now seems.”Emma Rice's departure is not about lighting

As a Catholic, and knowing myself reasonably well, I'm pinning my 

Great job. You’re fired Shakespeare’s Globe yesterday released a baffling public statement. It praised Emma Rice, its new artistic director, for the creative, critical and commercial success of her first season, her achievement in attracting new,  diverse audiences...  AJBlog: Performance Monkey

“Knowledge has entertained me and it has shaped me and it has failed me,” she writes in another essay here, “Winter Hours.” “Something in me still starves. In what is probably the most serious inquiry of my life, I have begun to look past reason, past the provable, in other directions. Now I think there is only one subject worth my attention and that is the precognition of the spiritual side of the world and, within this recognition, the condition of my own spiritual state. I am not talking about having faith necessarily, although one hopes to. What I mean by spirituality is not theology, but attitude.” Upstream place poem Mary Oliver in her arena of delight

What is Paul Romer doing at the World Bank?

Architect Of Failure ...

Wherever you go, you can't get rid of yourself ...  

Pretending to Grownup card game:

As a certain ancient Greek is reputed to have said, "the unexamined life is not worth living". Hopefully most of us have lives worth some examination ...

I feel more that the world failed me. I didn't vote for shit cyberdystopia ruled by idiots, for idiots. All my own perceived failures are probably because I set the bar two high and being an extremist it was "all or nothing". That Nobel Prize I was expecting is receding into the distance ;-) 

I turn 52 next week, and I have a confession to make: I feel like a complete failure at "adulting". Adulting, loosely defined, is that set of activities and behaviours which we judge to be characteristics of grown-ups. You can stop now and make your own list: what I'm going to suggest, speculatively, is that you probably feel like a failure at adulting too. (If you don't, you can stop reading here.) I'm not alone in this self-defined failure. Lots of people I know, my own age and younger, also admit to feeling like failed adults: "I haven't grown up" is merely the tense-shifted version of "I don't want to grow up". But what does this really mean?

NEWS YOU CAN USE: Lifting weights could make you more intelligent, study suggests.
Nassim Taleb “He doesn’t even deadlift.”
 Charles Stross' life:

I suspect that when I was a pre-teen I internalized a model of adult behaviour that is familiar to anyone under 30 today mostly from TV shows like Mad Men. Men wore suits and hats and went out to work, women wore dresses and stayed home to raise kids, the trappings of material success included cars and maybe a black and white television and a vacuum cleaner (a luxury item in 1950s UK) and air travel was exotic.  ...
So if you're slouched in front of your laptop wearing a hoodie and joggers while listening to 80s bubblegum pop on a streaming audio channel, and if you've got a collection of bobble-heads or models of the Starship Enterprise on your desk, and your kids (assuming you have any) are wearing retro fashions that remind you of photos of your parents back when they were dating, relax: you are not a failure! 

As Peggy Noonan recently wrote, “It’s the big fact of American life now, isn’t it? That we are patronized by our inferiors.”

 Australian swimmer thanks fan who raised alarm over mole
Joel Kotkin: Trump Will Go Away, but the Anger He’s Stirred Up Is Just Getting Started 

Ian Burrell – “The British Library is becoming a modern news publisher. Its expertise in the field of journalism is immense. The home of one of the greatest newspaper archives in the world, amounting to more than 15m pages of news, it also houses The Newsroom, a permanent resource charting the evolution of news in broadcast, print and digital media. And it is in digital publishing that this institution is going through a transformation, producing its own articles, live streams and video clips for a worldwide audience. It’s a symbol of how almost all of us – companies, institutions, individuals – are contributors to contemporary media, even if only via a basic home page or Facebook status update. In the case of the British Library, it’s much more than that…”

 Johns Hopkins Medicine news: “When practicing and learning a new skill, making slight changes during repeat practice sessions may help people master the skill faster than practicing the task in precisely the same way, Johns Hopkins researchers report. In a study of 86 healthy volunteers asked to learn a computer-based motor skill, those who quickly adjusted to a modified practice session the second time around performed better than when repeating their original task, the researchers found. The results support the idea that a process called reconsolidation, in which existing memories are recalled and modified with new knowledge, plays a key role in the strengthening of motor skills, says senior study author Pablo A. Celnik, M.D., professor of physical medicine and rehabilitation at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. “What we found is if you practice a slightly modified version of a task you want to master, you actually learn more and faster than if you just keep practicing the exact same thing multiple times in a row,” says Celnik. The work, described in the Jan. 28 edition of the journal Current Biology, has implications not only for leisure skills, like learning to play a musical instrument or a sport, but also for helping patients with stroke and other neurological conditions regain lost motor function, he says. “Our results are important because little was known before about how reconsolidation works in relation to motor skill development. This shows how simple manipulations during training can lead to more rapid and larger motor skill gains because of reconsolidation,” says Celnik. “The goal is to develop novel behavioral interventions and training schedules that give people more improvement for the same amount of practice time.””

Dan Gillmor: NYT's smart acquisition of 's shows that bootstrapped verticals are a -- maybe the -- way to go for journalism startups. Successful Dragons

Pew – “In a political environment defined by widespread polarization and partisan animosity, even simple conversations can go awry when the subject turns to politics. In their in-person interactions, Americans can (and often do) attempt to steer clear of those with whom they strongly disagree. But online social media environments present new challenges. In these spaces, users can encounter statements they might consider highly contentious or extremely offensive – even when they make no effort to actively seek out this material. Similarly, political arguments can encroach into users’ lives when comment streams on otherwise unrelated topics devolve into flame wars or partisan bickering. Navigating these interactions can be particularly fraught in light of the complex mix of close friends, family members, distant acquaintances, professional connections and public figures that make up many users’ online networks. A new Pew Research Center survey of U.S. adults finds that political debate and discussion is indeed a regular fact of digital life for many social media users, and some politically active users enjoy the heated discussions and opportunities for engagement that this mix of social media and politics facilitates. But a larger share expresses annoyance and aggravation at the tone and content of the political interactions they witness on these platforms…”

The entire continent of Australia sways (a little) with the weather

New York Post op-ed: Obama Told Us He’s Honorable — But He’s Just Another Liar, by Kyle Smith