dangerousmeta!, the original new mexican miscellany, offering eclectic linkage since 1999.

NakedCap: Americans Raid 401(k)s, Replacing Home Equity Withdrawals.

Admittedly, a Bloomberg graphic shows that the amount of penalties was slightly lower in 2011 than 2010. But the fact that it’s higher than the levels seen during the financial crisis years shows that economic stress is still high.

05/07/14 • 09:21 AM • EconomicsHome & LivingHuman RightsPolitics • (0) Comments • (0) Trackbacks

ForeignPolicy: How Putin Is Reinventing Warfare.

As the Kremlin faces down the West, it is indeed gambling that old alliances like the EU and NATO mean less in the 21st century than the new commercial ties it has established with nominally ‘Western’ companies, such as BP, Exxon, Mercedes, and BASF.” Turning point, historically. Eyes open?

05/06/14 • 11:32 AM • EconomicsHistoryHuman RightsPolitics • (6) Comments • (0) Trackbacks

In These Times: Fracking’s Harm Extends Beyond Polling Places.

Indeed, no matter where you are reading this column, there are examples of real-life catastrophes with real-life ramifications being treated by political elites as just more ‘grenades’ in their self-serving political wars.

05/02/14 • 09:07 AM • EnvironmentalHuman RightsPolitics • (0) Comments • (0) Trackbacks

Vox: Girls have gotten better grades than boys for 100 years.

The gender gap has traditionally been larger in language classes. But even in math and science, teachers have been handing out better grades to girls for a century.” You go, girls.

05/02/14 • 08:57 AM • ChildhoodHuman RightsScholarlyScience • (0) Comments • (0) Trackbacks

sazzy.co.uk: Gracefully Bowing Out of Giant Conference.

I’ve since found out that many of the speakers were getting paid. I was given the impression that no one was being paid. It was more a case of, if you didn’t ask, it wasn’t freely offered.” I’ve often wondered how one makes money on the modern web-personality speaker circuit, when the market’s saturated. Obviously, you don’t. You get to build your personal brand on your own dime.

Remember that, next time you sign up for one. I think the first thing I’ll do from now on is email and ask my preferred speakers if they’re getting reasonably compensated.

05/01/14 • 08:42 PM • Human RightsInternetWeblogs • (0) Comments • (0) Trackbacks

Telegraph.UK/Obituary: The real ‘Cooler King” - William Ash.

An astounding life story. Read of the day.

05/01/14 • 06:27 PM • HistoryHuman RightsPolitics • (0) Comments • (0) Trackbacks

The Economist: Muslims in Marseille: Behind the façade.

Countrywide, over 250 young French jihadists have left for Syria, among them teenaged girls. The government is trying to disrupt recruiting networks.” My italic emphasis. Not good. Marseille has always been a little rough, a melting-pot. Sounds especially volatile now. I don’t like this new reality, where mere words can inspire murder on public streets.

05/01/14 • 12:45 PM • HistoryHuman RightsLawTravel • (0) Comments • (0) Trackbacks

Vox: Everything you need to know about Benghazi.

Handy. One could wish for more footnotes with links.

04/30/14 • 03:10 PM • Human RightsInternetLawNewsPolitics • (0) Comments • (0) Trackbacks

Telegraph.UK: Anti-rape video - Why Daniel Craig’s appeal to men could really matter.

It’s a stark message: not only are rapists responsible for their crimes, but by other men keeping silent, attackers are allowed to flourish.” 

04/30/14 • 02:46 PM • Human RightsLawPsychology • (1) Comments • (0) Trackbacks

WaPo: Inmate dies following botched Oklahoma execution, second execution delayed.

Hideous. A ‘vein blow’ often means the person administering the drugs popped the needle completely through the vein, into the body. So it could be ‘operator error.’ Since the AMA frowns on physicians doing this, we’re back to 19th century ‘doctor-barber’ medicine.

The media ‘usual subjects’ are voicing opinions about guillotines, electric chairs, gas booths and firing squads. Right. I thought the point was to eliminate torture, just end the life humanely?

If one must exercise death as a punishment, I understand modified ligature strangulation (compressing carotid and jugular veins, but not the windpipe) with about 8 pounds of constant pressure on each side of the neck causes swift unconsciousness and death, with supposedly minimal suffering. Drunks do it to themselves on an alarmingly frequent basis (falling asleep with their necks over chair arms, bars, etc.).

04/30/14 • 12:14 PM • Human RightsLaw • (0) Comments • (0) Trackbacks

SciAm: Antibiotic Resistance Is Now Rife across the Globe.

A post antibiotic-era—in which common infections and minor injuries can kill—far from being an apocalyptic fantasy, is instead a very real possibility for the 21st century” And some background as to why. Capitalism as suicide pact.

04/30/14 • 10:58 AM • EconomicsHealthHistoryHuman RightsScience • (0) Comments • (0) Trackbacks

CJR: Drone man.

I do wish the American media would be more precise about categorizing drones. In the context of this article, fine. I think of ‘drone’ specifically in a military/reconaissance context.

But domestically? Quadcopters with cameras, R/C aircraft with cameras have been around for decades. Anyone can drop less than $1k and be doing half-decent aerial videos in hours … though I’d recommend the smarter move is to rent [with damage waiver]. Piloting an R/C helicopter [main rotor/tail rotor] used to take weeks of practice; modern quadcopters are comparatively simple to master.

All of a sudden, every R/C device has become … quelle horreur! … a drone.

These are so cheap, and dropping in price so fast, every photographer in America will likely have one within the year. Many top photographers already almost treat them as disposables (new detritus to find in the wilderness, I’m sure). Heck, every family may have one by next Xmas. When kids are casually biking around with $500 GoPro setups … how far off can a <$1k ‘drone’ purchase be?

I predict laser gunbattle quadcopters will be next in the toy market.

I’m waiting for the first nonprofit to sail a ‘drone’ over a corporation-owned environmentally-contentious locale (fracking, uranium mining cleanup, etc.) and post the realities to Youtube.  The legal brouhaha should be spectacular. It’ll be the whole Google Street Van privacy issue, dialed to ‘11’.

My point is, most of these devices are R/C quadcopters doing aerial videos - they have no military purpose. And just saying “R/C quadcopter”, don’t you feel less stressed about it? Drone is a trigger word, and frightens people. Most of these things are oversized plastic-fantastic toys. Hobbyist quality. No innocents are going to die*. Call a spade a spade. I won’t hold my breath, though. Paradronanoia attracts clicks.

[And if you’re buying a DJI Phantom and using it in public, please purchase the blade guards. Small children, athletes, pets, valuable plantings, spectators … and your fingers … will thank you.]

Later: Tangentially related.

*They might put your eye out, though.

04/29/14 • 10:48 AM • Human RightsLawMotion GraphicsPhotography • (0) Comments • (0) Trackbacks

New Yorker: What We Left Behind in Iraq.

That trusted middleman is still us. And we are not there.

04/28/14 • 03:35 PM • HistoryHuman RightsPolitics • (0) Comments • (0) Trackbacks

NY Times: Chernobyl - Capping a Catastrophe.

I’d bet on the “300 years or more.”

04/28/14 • 09:18 AM • HealthHistoryHuman RightsPolitics • (0) Comments • (0) Trackbacks

The Nation: Chris Christie Lauds Scott Walker’s Union Bashing.

Ooooh, there went the whole “Sopranos” Mafia vote in Jersey (a significant political influence even yet).

04/25/14 • 12:52 PM • Human RightsPolitics • (0) Comments • (0) Trackbacks

codebabes.com: Learn Coding and Web Development the Fun Way.

Speechless. Getting linked like crazy across the programming aggregators. See Mollie’s post yesterday.

04/25/14 • 10:57 AM • Human RightsInternetProgramming • (0) Comments • (0) Trackbacks

LA Times: Cliven Bundy’s ‘better off as slaves’ remark about blacks draws fire.

As reprehensible as this opinion is, one does not have to venture far into rural America to hear worse. Washington has always adored the FJ Turner/Frontier Thesis individual, no matter what rotting baggage he brings along with him.

Good time to reread ‘The Monkey Wrench Gang’, to get an idea of what the Nevada culture is composed of.

04/25/14 • 09:58 AM • Human RightsLawPolitics • (0) Comments • (0) Trackbacks

TechDirt: Russia Orders Bloggers To ‘Register’; Outlaws Anonymous Blogging.

The law introduces a new term: ‘Internet user called blogger.’ Bloggers will be obliged to declare their family name and initials and e-mail address. Those authors whose personal website or page in social networks has 3,000 visitors or more a day must have themselves registered on a special list and abide by restrictions applicable to the mass media.

04/24/14 • 04:08 PM • Human RightsLawWeblogs • (0) Comments • (0) Trackbacks

The Fully Intended: “Feminism” is just a phase I’m going through.

Mollie Semple writes another great one.

04/24/14 • 03:15 PM • HistoryHuman RightsWeblogs • (0) Comments • (0) Trackbacks

StarTrib: Report cites poor management, eroding safety for nuke dump radiation release.

Color me unsurprised.

04/24/14 • 10:53 AM • EnvironmentalHuman RightsLawPoliticsSanta Fe Local • (0) Comments • (0) Trackbacks

PacificStandard: What Life Is Like When Having Your Period Means You Are Shunned.

Helping break these taboos would be more rewarding than the usual ‘Eat-Pray-Love’ self-discovery tourism.

04/23/14 • 02:04 PM • HealthHistoryHuman RightsPoliticsPsychologyReligionTravel • (0) Comments • (0) Trackbacks

Foreign Policy: Did Robert Capa Fake ‘Falling Soldier’?

What really happened on that hillside? Capa himself maintained almost total silence about it ...” That particular image has always bothered me, since the first Time-Life photo books I received as a kid (remember that book club in the early ‘70’s, book-a-month or something?). His clothes. They’re too pristine for having been in a trench. No dirt, no wrinkles. Looks like he just stood for inspection. And the pose. As I thought about it at the time, when I’m hit by something (someone throws something at me), I curl around the impact. Was this guy shot in the back? Surprised I can still dredge up those early thoughts. But that pic *did* stick out like a sore thumb.

04/23/14 • 11:01 AM • ArtsHistoryHuman RightsPhotography • (0) Comments • (0) Trackbacks

DailyMash.UK: Women now doing lots of pointless bloke crap.

Professor Brubaker added that many women were choosing to remain single rather than have relationships with men with crap hobbies, and so were having to take up trainspotting, martial arts and collecting beer glasses themselves.” My amused emphasis.

04/23/14 • 08:43 AM • GeneralHuman RightsTravel • (0) Comments • (0) Trackbacks

ProPublica: Meet the Doctor Who Gave $1M of His Own Money to Keep His Gun Research Going.

I did a gun show study. When I started crunching numbers on gun show sales, and looking at the surveys, I came to realize — as interesting as this is, gun shows themselves are not a big part of the problem. I felt obligated to add this into my report.”  Unexpurgated scientific study will out.

04/22/14 • 11:58 AM • Human RightsLawScience • (0) Comments • (0) Trackbacks

Dissent Magazine: Phyllis Schlafly - Still Wrong (and Mean) After All These Years.

Why is she still a subject? I thought we’d moved beyond the 50’s beehive-hairdo historical revisionists (‘submit to your husbands, slam those ‘mothers little helpers’). I suppose this means the old GOP still wants some PR traction.

Related: “Supersisters” feminist trading cards of the ‘70s.  Great.

04/22/14 • 11:12 AM • HistoryHuman RightsPolitics • (1) Comments • (0) Trackbacks
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