Monthly Archives: November 2017

Lies of the Machines

This entire article by Kevin Drum is worth reading, at least for people who don’t pay much attention to AI threat (if you do pay attention, it will be old news). But I’d especially highlight one quote: #3: Okay, maybe we … Continue reading

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The Nerd in His Natural Habitat

Oi. This essay by Willie Osterweil makes some important points. But the whole thing is so choked with social-justice cliches that his conclusion, I think, is almost completely off-base. Osterweil is writing about nerd culture and cinema. He argues that … Continue reading

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Mommie Jeer-Fest

Whelp. I finally saw Mommie Dearest, the infamous cult film about Joan Crawford’s poor parenting skills. It slumps horribly in the later chapters, and has all the structural flaws common to most biopics, following the messy course of a life … Continue reading

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Life Among the Junior Spies

Libertarian types are going wild for a story about a bisexual philosophy student disciplined by his department chair for making dicey remarks about Islam. From Reason: A bisexual male student at the University of Texas–San Antonio said during an informal … Continue reading

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The Misanthropes

Daniel Everett’s book about the Piraha Indians of Peru isn’t what I’d call a masterful work of anthropology. Just a fairly readable account of his time doing fieldwork as a linguist in the Amazon. It’s not until a third of … Continue reading

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Cultural Depreciation

Here’s Catherine Rampell of the Washington Post writing about a university fraternity disciplined for cultural appropriation: [T]hey called their event “Bad(minton) and Boujee.” It’s a pun on “Bad and Boujee,” a popular rap song by the group Migos about being newly rich … Continue reading

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Whither Social Justice?

(Author’s Note: I originally wrote this essay at the end of 2016. My thinking has evolved quite a bit since that time. Maybe I’ll write a followup at some point.) Since the presidential election, a number of pundits have blamed … Continue reading

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