Thursday, September 10, 2020

The almost impossible chessboard puzzle

Why Are Magazine Artiles Fact-Checked But Books Aren’t?

Most nonfiction books are not fact checked; if they are, it is at the author’s expense. Publishers have said for years that it would be cost-prohibitive for them to provide fact checking for every nonfiction book; they tend to speak publicly about a book’s facts only if a book includes errors that lead to a public scandal and threaten their bottom line. Recent controversies over books containing factual errors by Jill AbramsonNaomi Wolf, and, further back, James Frey, come to mind. – Esquire


Part of Moon’s drive to use the film to illustrate the powerful impact of Reddy’s music—and not simply Reddy herself—was her own experience growing up in Australia.
“I remember it so clearly … when Helen’s music used to come on the radio, how it used to affect my mother and her friends … these women in my life, they would change. They would be sitting in the front of the station wagon, driving the car, and suddenly the song would come on and they’d wind down their window and let their hair loose in the breeze and put their fists up in the air and suddenly become stronger and more independent. I guess I’d never forgotten what that music did.”


The story of the feminist singer is one of hard-fought success amid glass ceilings, told here in a biopic that’s lean and likeable – if a little trite

The first performance of the titular track arrives around the one-hour mark – and yes, it induces tingles. Cobham-Hervey maintains a very vertical physicality; the performance seems to exist entirely in her eyes. Moon contextualises the scene, cutting to footage of women’s liberation protests, aligning the film to the raison ‘d’etre of the song: the feeling this is an anthem; a celebration; a symbol of change.

All anthems require a degree of simplicity, cutting through the complexities of human experience to create a feeling. The song nails that in three and a half minutes; the film stretches it out across two hours, reducing its impact but retaining its sentiment.

 I Am Woman is a 2019 Australian biographical film about singer Helen Reddy, directed and produced by Unjoo Moon, from a screenplay by Emma Jensen.

Screen Australia is the principle investor in the film,[5] alongside Cowlick Entertainment, and arts body Create NSW, with further funding from the Goodship Women's Fund, which supports films with strong social change messaging.  

This is what makes I Am Woman well worth the watch: It is not just a story about any one person, it is a story about a movement. And one that still has work to do today.

Ex spy fined over possession of secret documents

RESOLUTION: Former spy and diplomat Roger Uren has been convicted of breaching national secrecy laws and has been ordered to pay a fine of $7000.


 Tim Crane, Jane Heal, Tom Baldwin, A

lva Noë, Helen Steward… — recent interviewees at the “Five Questions” podcast by Kieran Setiya (MIT)

‘What The Country Needs Now Is A Really Good Four-Letter Word’

Wilfred McClay: “I hear you, gentle reader, saying that surely I must be kidding. We need more profanity? Aren’t we already being inundated with it? … And that’s exactly the problem. Our curse currency has become grossly inflated and devalued. … When what once was salty loses its savor, it becomes worthy only to be trampled underfoot.” – The Hedgehog Review

Environmental & social scaffolding for overcoming procrastination — the start of the school year is a good time to revisit this useful piece by Joseph Heath and Joel Anderson

“I don’t claim to have a priori knowledge about the extent to which people should or shouldn’t rely on cancellation” — interesting thoughts from Irfan Khawaja about cancel culture, discussion of which, he says, “strikes me as time-bound polemics masquerading as moral philosophy”

“I started Corrupt the Youth so they don’t have to play catch up like I did” — a moving profile of Briana Toole (Claremont McKenna) and her work teaching philosophy to high school students from low-income or underrepresented groups

CNN interviews philosopher about fascism — Jason Stanley (Yale) warns about “massive use of fascist tactics”

What kind of achievement is it to give birth? — Fiona Woollard (Southampton) guides us between the mistakes of idolization and invisibility

The almost impossible chessboard puzzle — a math-obsessed warden makes an offer to two prisoners…

We should “see our opponent’s political views as an expression of their sincere attempt to think clearly about politics, to act in the office of citizenship according to their best judgment” — Robert Talisse (Vanderbilt) argues for “political sympathy”, in Culturico

  • “For me, the greatest philosophical thrill is realizing that something I’d long taken for granted might not be true” — Eric Schwitzgebel (UC Riverside) on the difference philosophy that opens and philosophy that closes
  • “When you enter the walk-in closet of your soul, are your politics just a youthful fad, as dispensable as drunk-ordered harem pants?” — Kim Kierkegaardashian offers advice to a young anti-capitalist Marxist who longs for a collection of designer handbags, in The New Yorker
  • “If there’s one thread running through most of my published philosophical work, it’s that introspection isn’t good for shit” — an interview with John Schwenkler (Florida State)
  • A book complaining about “cynical theories” itself suffers from “misplaced cynicism combined with unwarranted confidence in such cynical interpretations” — and contains so many misinterpretations of philosophers’ views that it “looks much more like incendiary fan fiction than scholarly analysis”
  • This philosopher “has spent his career studying concepts like truth, justice, and freedom. Now he wants to put these principles into practice” — a profile of Richard Dien Winfield (U. Georgia), who is running for Senate, in Jacobin
  • It would be perfect irony if Voltaire was “canceled” — ask yourself before clicking: do you want it to be true that he was?