Sunday Link Encyclopedia and Self-Promotion

A very important and insightful post on MOOCs. Everybody talks about them but who has actually taken the trouble to analyze them at length, like this blogger did: “A well thought out MOOC costs and does not save money. It is clear to me that in order to move forward on the creation well-tempered MOOCs, we should at least for the moment decouple the discussion of cost-cutting from that of extending access to education to people who have none. These are two issues, not one, and it is my distinct impression that they have been conflated to one by the language of neoliberalism.

Pro-life advocates are rabid in their supposed desire to protect the unborn. They are not so moved to protect the welfare of a living child, especially if it might cost the government money. I cannot reconcile these positions and I have yet to gain any answers to this paradox from those that so violently advocate for life.” The only answer that makes sense is that not a single anti-choicer has any actual interest in any actual fetuses. All they really want is to express their rage against women. Let’s just accept this simple reality and move on already.

It is really really disturbing to discover that a blogger I never met has been having the same dream I have for about 20 years.  But it isn’t that weird for people from my part of the world to have this dream. We were all traumatized by airplanes falling out of the sky on residential buildings. (The link is in Russian.)

The greatest problem with the jury system is that jurors are often intensely stupid: “The juror said that she initially found the law surrounding the case “very confusing,” specifically referring to the last-minute addition of manslaughter to the charges they were to consider against Zimmerman. “there was a couple in there who wanted to find him guilty of something,” she said, but that neither of the options on the table, second-degree murder or manslaughter, were feasibly options given the way they read state law.” Just think about it: if they could stay sequestered for a trial, this means nobody required their presence anywhere else.

Richard Cohen, I am a 39-year-old white woman married to a 37-year-old white man, and between us we own at least five hoodies. No one—no one—looks at either one of us wearing a hoodie and imagines that we are wearing “a uniform” of “urban crime.” The only reason anyone would look at Trayvon Martin and call a hoodie “a uniform” is because he was a black kid.” Exactly. My sister lived for hoodies when she was Trayvon’s age, and somehow nobody thought she was a criminal of any kind.

We have the same kind of stupid racists preventing Metrolink from coming to my town: “Another woman, who would not give her name, put it more explicitly: “If somebody can’t get to King of Prussia by car, they shouldn’t be coming at all.”

You’d think that nobody would be able to find anything wrong with the great initiative to offer access to stairwells to people who don’t want to take the elevator, but there are preachy drama queens who believe their self-pity is a good reason to prevent other people from taking care of their health.

And this is how I discovered that my current state school is one of the most elite universities in the country: “I believe the scientific term is FUBAR. Over three-quarters of instruction is conducted by non-tenure-track faculty (likemeeeeeeeeeeee), and the compensation and work structure for tenure-track faculty is also no picnic these days anywhere but at the most elite institutions.” I didn’t go to campus for a week and the university managed to join the ranks of the super-elite in that short period of time. Good for us!

During the past thirty years conservatives have worked to dismantle the institutions that produced the prosperous middle class after WW2.” Of course, this fictitious “prosperous middle class” was actually a class of prosperous men who owned indigent and completely dependent women and were served by indigent and debased blacks. But who cares, as long as men had enough money to stomp on women as much as they wanted? I know everybody is sick and tired of me saying this but I will keep saying it for as long as I have to if people are not getting how offensive their slobbering over the golden age of the 1950s is.

Choosing abortion over child abuse: the most poignant, honest and powerful piece on reproductive rights I have seen in a while.