WaPo: 98 personal data points that Facebook uses to target ads to you.
Astonishing. I shouldn’t be surprised, but I am. What concerns me more is the creation of ... no term for this yet ... ‘economic vacuum chambers’. As we see Republicans and Dems split off to ideological vacuum chambers, these targeted ads are feeding us product and services in ‘perceived’ economic and interest categories. What if I don’t fit the profile, but I’d really like an aged steak? Will I be served endless ads for Wal-Mart ground beef? What does this do to a person’s overall character, not to mention aspirations? Not describing this well, but I hope you get my drift. Many of these ‘feed them what they routinely view’ algorithms encourage and vivify terrible habit formation.
Dazed: Teenage girls in the UK feel ‘worthless’ and ‘unhappy’.
“If all that wasn’t enough, a major new survey from the Department for Education has revealed that more than a third of teenage girls in the UK now suffer from depression and anxiety. According to stats obtained by the organisation, 37 per cent of female 14-year-olds feel unhappy, worthless, or unable to concentrate – which is double the amount compared to boys of the same age.” Begs the question, why?
Slate: NBC’s Olympics ratings were way down.
For some inexplicable reason, I had zero interest this year. I didn’t watch a single event. Don’t know why. Sports are not a big interest of mine, but I would usually show up for some gymnastics or swim meet footage. Perhaps all the negative lead-in about Rio. Maybe. I’ll have to think about it more. Phelps capped an amazing career, but my memory of Mark Spitz’ domination still means more. Maybe it’s my age/era.
NY Review of Books: ‘Hot’ Sex & Young Girls, by Zoë Heller.
“It would be a salutary thing to have some old-school feminist pugnacity injected back into the culture.” Amen. Though I suspect a bitter backlash when the current generation starts to age and realizes all they gave up.
The Fully Intended: Being afraid.
New Yorker: What Happens When We Decide Everyone Else Is a Narcissist.
“If ‘toxic self-absorption’ is indeed the new American disease, then it will be important to remember that no one has immunity.” There is nothing more damaging and wrong than involuntary psychoanalysis. Over each other. Even over politicians. Any psychologist will tell you decent analysis is a time consuming, intricate process. Generalizations are prone to bias. An individual with a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology ruined my opportunity to be fluent for decades. ‘60’s. I admit I’m a bit unreasonable and immovable over this, given my own experiences. I don’t think I’m alone. Read James Hillman. Where is moving locations as a therapy in modern psychology? Exactly. Not everyone benefits from the modern SSRI -> endless talk therapy route.
FishbowlNY: NPR Is Closing Its Comments Section.
“Montgomery added that social media provides a much better platform for discussing NPR stories than the site’s comments section. He’s right, of course.” Um, Twitter just encourages snark. So I respectfully disagree.
NYT: Love. Labor. Lost.
Good God. Talk about overthinking things.
BillMoyers: How Trump Succeeds by Saying Out Loud What Many Voters Think.
“What we’re learning is that a lot of people have been biting their lips, but not changing their minds.” And perpetuating those beliefs to their children.
Mashable: Olympic runners finish race together after a heartbreaking fall.
Great moment. Face adversity with your head high.
People: Johnny Depp and Amber Heard Reach Settlement In Divorce.
Can’t argue with a video, really. Let’s hope these two get the help they obviously need.
The New Yorker: The Appalling Last Act of Rudy Giuliani.
How the GOP mighty fall. Makes you wonder, it really does. The nefarious influence of echo chambers. The motivations of humanity.
Catapult: Their Body, Themselves.
Parents usually learn this early. It’s all in how YOU react. Not others.
Story from my past. My father loved recounting when my sister first asked about “How do you make a baby?” He was reading the paper, as he normally did on Sunday ... nose buried deep in the NY Times. My sister walked up, out of his line of sight, and asked the question. Now, a normal parent of today might put the paper down and start into a longwinded, overwrought explanation. Not ol’ Pops. Dad slowly lowered the paper, and looked over his glasses ... and saw my sister standing there with a crayon and a piece of paper held out. She wanted to know how to *draw* a baby. Dad’s comment: “Never answer too fast.”
FishbowlNY: Even The WSJ Has Had Enough of Donald Trump.
Atlas Obscura: The First Published Study About Chemtrails Is Here.
There is no better way to identify one’s self as an idiot, than proclaiming belief in chemtrails. It is so simply debunked, even elementary school children can understand.
The Economist: Conversation and the sexes - Why men interrupt.
“What evidence shows that male and female styles differ? Among the most compelling is a crucial piece left out of the “simple sexism” explanation: men mansplain to each other.” Oh God, this is SO needed. Once again, as a stutterer in the past, it was always easy to step on my conversation and dominate. And so many did. Both sexes, but certain males ... jeezus, my eyeballs would practically pop out for needing to express myself while being pummeled with irrelevant self-aggrandizement ...
NY Times: Donald Trump Is Making America Meaner.
Art gallery personnel in Santa Fe, many of whom I associate with, have noticed a sharp uptick in unmannered, bigoted, self-centered people imposing their deeply-held manias on others. Past time for someone to shut the guy down.
PS Mag: How Incivility Breeds Incivility.
“The team found that experiencing an inconsiderate or insulting act can drain an employee’s self-control, making it more likely he or she will act out in a similar way later in the day. Importantly, this cycle of abuse was only found in workplaces perceived as highly political.” Office politics - the worst. Absolute worst.
Quora: Is the term (and concept) ‘stochastic terrorism’ new?
“Stochastic terrorism” seems to have been made up by a poster on Daily Kos after the Tucson shooting of Giffords. Not that it is not a beneficial concept, but it is not scholarly, as far as I can tell. Depending on your definition of ‘stochastic’, it could also just mean ‘unpredictable random terrorist acts’ - in which case it is useless as ideological condemnation (the most popular use on this newsday).
Civil War Memory: General Edmund Kirby Smith, Black Confederate.
“As you can see, the Hankerson believes that Confederate General Edmund Kirby Smith was black. Readers will also be surprised to hear that Kirby Smith attended the ‘prestigious Southern school’ at West Point.” Smith was white, and West Point is in NY. Geez, man.
The Atlantic: ‘The Second Amendment People’.
“With 90 days until the election, one nominee has joked about the other being shot to death, and as of this moment his party elders stand with him.” Back off teleprompter again. Shades of Reagan aides, slapping their heads and saying “The Governor’s winging it again!”
Politico: Clinton-Trump debate sites plan for a third podium.
Catapult: The Crematorium.
Great piece. So many familiar points.
NY Times: Hillary Clinton Addresses a Rare Audience - Journalists.
This seems more and more like a tempest in a teapot, the longer it goes on. The exact Comey quote: “We have no basis to conclude she lied to the FBI.” Now, here’s the double-standard. If they cannot conclude she lied, then ... she told the truth (as far as they know)? I’m no Hillary fan (holding my nose for lack of options), but if you held Trump to this standard ... ?
Fair’s fair. Judge people equally. That’s all I’m saying.
Politico: Insiders to Trump - Drop out.
One problem for Dems in this scenario (amidst others). If they replace him with another candidate, the media will focus their 24/7 harangue-machines so tightly on the new candidate, that individual will get exponential free publicity to put the race back into a 50/50 horserace. If it happens, you just watch if I’m not correct.