Slate: Clarence Thomas same-sex marriage dissent: “Slaves did not lose their dignity.”
“... human dignity cannot be taken away by the government.” One can tell immediately he has never applied for welfare or unemployment. I propose a new rule - you can’t judge, legislate or litigate unless you’ve direct experience.
Naked Cap: Who was Alexander Hamilton? Militarism, High Finance and Checking the Democracy.
MeFi: Titty, Cock, Intercourse and Ejaculation.
Civil War Memory: Removal of Confederate Flags Marks the End of the Civil War Sesquicentennial.
Hmmm. As I mentioned yesterday, I wonder what rationalizations will come forward to excuse the use of slave-built structures in Washington, D.C. [in the addendum of that post] ... you know that shoe’s gonna drop soon.
Italian Ways: The Gilera Rondine 500, unrivaled power.
Wonderful. Even made me laugh out loud.
NPR: Supreme Court Declares Same-Sex Marriage Legal In All 50 States.
And, I expect Roberts to hope this will mollify Conservatives over the previous ACA ruling: “But do not celebrate the Constitution. [snip] It had nothing to do with it.” Of course, he has a point. Marriage is not mentioned in the Constitution at all. His statement is perfectly ‘safe’ - too subtle for most to understand. Even most of our modern media.
BBC: Avengers star Patrick Macnee dies.
Oh no! Note he also played a young Jacob Marley in my favorite version of A Christmas Carol; the one with Alistair Sim as Scrooge. And The Avengers was a staple in our house. RIP, good sir; you will be greatly missed.
Hemmings: After devastating fire, restoration begins on one of the world’s oldest Beetle.
Serial number 1-00003. Think of how many followed it ...
SciAm: Researchers Study 3 Promising Anti-Aging Therapies.
Authority Nutrition: 10 Evidence-Based Health Benefits of Whey Protein.
Been consuming it for years. I’ve graduated to the purest, lowest-cost form I can find: Now Foods Whey Protein Isolate, Natural Unflavored. Two scoops, a small teaspoon of instant coffee to knock back the flavor, milk. Blend. Done.
Electric Lit: Sunset and Sunrise on Bleak Horizons - The State of the Revisionist Western
EL calls this “evocative and deeply aware”: “Bleak horizon under a glazed sky, flat desert, clumps of sage, scrub, distant butte, lone rider. This is a land of sand, dry rocks, and dead things. Buzzard country. And he is migrating through it.”
Compare and contrast, Zane Grey, Wildfire: “Hers always then the mutable and immutable desert, the leagues and leagues of slope and sage and rolling ridge, the great canyons and the giant cliffs, the dark river with its mystic thunder of waters, the pine-fringed plateaus, the endless stretch of horizon, with its lofty, isolated, noble monuments, and the bold ramparts with their beckoning beyond! Hers always the desert seasons: the shrill, icy blast, the intense cold, the steely skies, the fading snows; the gray old sage and the bleached grass under the pall of the spring sand-storms; the hot furnace breath of summer, with its magnificent cloud pageants in the sky, with the black tempests hanging here and there over the peaks, dark veils floating down and rainbows everywhere, and the lacy waterfalls upon the glistening cliffs and the thunder of the red floods; and the glorious golden autumn when it was always afternoon and time stood still! Hers always the rides in the open, with the sun at her back and the wind in her face! And hers surely, sooner or later, the nameless adventure which had its inception in the strange yearning of her heart and presaged its fulfilment somewhere down that trailless sage-slope she loved so well!”
I live in Zane’s landscape. Sorry, but you lose, revisionists.
Hyperallergic: Another Treasure Lost in Iraq - The Story of Mar Behnam Monastery
“The demolition of the mausoleum of Imam Yahya ibn al-Qasim and the tomb of Imam Ibn Hassan Aoun al-Din wiped out two of Mosul’s prominent medieval landmarks. When another explosion obliterated the Imam Dur mausoleum in Samarra, it wiped out the earliest example of a muqarnas dome in the world.” Not just the well-known landmarks are being destroyed. They’re blowing up *everything*.
Hyperallergic: What Should Be Done with the US’s Many Confederate Monuments?++
I understand the longstanding outrage over the symbols of a defeated racist rebellion. Hideous to have to see the pastor’s coffin pass the Confederate flag. However, this article touches on a sensitive point. You don’t change a culture in a single news-cycle. The current ‘ride-em-all-out-of-town-on-a-rail’ wave is in danger of making two very important mistakes:
One, driving the hardcore racists further underground, allowing them to stew into a more potent - and potentially lethal - broth. I’m very concerned about this.
Two, disenfranchising those Southerners who see the flag, and all associated Confederate memorabilia, as a simple differentiating point. Many see the trappings of the old Confederacy as the only method to gain attention vs. Northern ‘liberalism’ (as Southerners interpret it). They like and celebrate being “Southern,” esp. in the so-called ‘Deep South.’ What would you do, if your culture was attacked? Entrench. We all do it, on all sides of the aisle. I’m hearing “carpetbagging” by “Northern liberal elites” being bandied about, on the far edges of the ‘net.
Why is that entrenchment worrisome? As the media rages on, they’re building a voting bloc for whatever Republican decides to embrace and romanticize the symbols of Confederacy, no matter how small the gesture. Wink-wink, nudge-nudge. Or Perry could simply push the old Texas flag, and leverage the outrage. Even the conservative radio shock-jocks are jumping on the wagon, saying “Is the American flag next?” I think we need to tread carefully. Roof is the result of ‘thintelligence’ ... someone who lacked basic education, who retained only what was discussed in the small niches he enjoyed. I worry more about internet echo chambers and their adherents; ultimately we’re going to find they’re more lethal than old battle flags. It’s easier than ever to pick and choose facts to create a separate ‘reality’. And it’s certainly not limited to the Southern US.
Later: Here’s another problem. What do we do with the White House? The Capital? Both built with slave labor. The Custis-Lee House (Arlington National Cemetery) kept slaves. Our ‘most hallowed ground’ was slave territory. All Presidents up to Lincoln used slaves. Andrew Jackson owned 150 - should he still be on the $20 bill? Should we still be celebrating George Washington, slaveholder? Jefferson? This is not as ridiculous as it sounds. Slavery built much of this nation. It is interwoven throughout our history. I am not defending it; just recognizing it. Someone in the media will get to it eventually; I just thought I’d beat them to it.
BBC: Freeze sperm at 18, bioethicist urges men.
“... the risks from fathering children later in life were ‘really quite small’.” Yet in America, you can’t donate to sperm banks over the age of 39. So who’s right?
Guardian.UK: New report estimates enough natural gas is leaking to negate climate benefits.
“The leaks are the equivalent to the greenhouse gases produced by 5.6m cars.” Man, I don’t doubt any of it.
“Flight of fancy ...”
Another from last eve ...
The Nation: Bobby Jindal Broke Louisiana So Badly That Even the GOP Doesn’t Want Him.
“Things are so bad for Jindal that his constituents would rather vote for Hillary Clinton.” Hillary could use this as a textbook case of what Republican toe-the-line rule would gift to America.
Giz: This Crazy Vertical Turntable Is the Best Way to Show Off Your Records.
Archaeology News Network: Mummified 17th century bishop a unique time capsule.
“An unexpected discovery that emerged from the CT scan was a four- or five-month old foetus ...” Well now that’s creepy.
IPPINKA: The Sada Bike - A Convenient Folding Bike.
Next ridiculous NM traffic jam, I need one of these. Will they make one with MTB tires ... ?
“Create a Flash website ...”
That ship has sailed, people.
SciAm: Should Italy’s Prized Olive Groves Be Burned to the Ground?
Politico: Fox dumps Sarah Palin.++
Article states that she’s out, and then follows up with incredible amounts of popularity statistics. Popularity, as I keep banging on about, has no polarity. Yet it’s continually being used as a measure of worthiness.
I can tell you right now, Lucifer’s Twitter feed would have more followers than his traditional opponent. Following doesn’t make him worthy; it just makes you susceptible.
NakedCap: TPP - 13 Dem Senators Invite Republicans to Make Them Laughing Stocks ...
I’m very, very uneasy about these under-the-table trade deals. See the bottom of this article for some scenarios. It seems more and more like a huge handout to multinationals ... and hasn’t Obama gifted enough to the pharmaceutical industry already? NAFTA hit us in unexpected places. These deals look to be even more ill-advised. The rush, the political force makes me even more wary.
LRB: Scott Ritter · ‘We ain’t found shit’.
“When Iraq finally told the truth about its weapons programmes, no one believed it. We used to joke about how often we came back from an inspection empty-handed, repeating the saying that insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result.”