Friday Link Encyclopedia 

My testimony was also part of this proceeding aimed at jostling the IL Republicans into giving us a budget.

An eerily true description of Russian-speaking parents. 

completely deranged new system of student evals

 It’s not surprising that community college profs are horrified with the idea of the UBI while ultra-rich businessmen applaud it. Consider this as you make up your mind. 

Related: video games are the equivalent of jobs for the young

A beautiful and touching post by somebody who was brave enough to find his own path

Why, why, why is it that the environmentalist message is so often delivered by such insufferable, smug assholes? I’m starting to think these folks are on the payroll of oil corporations. 

The prof who raped a disabled man will go free. I see a sexist double standard in this. 

The making of the Muslim world by Kenan Malik.

Goodthink for teens. Remember the discussion we had about transcriptless college admissions? This is part of the same trend. The goal is to produce future business leaders who will know how to mimic the pathetic vocabulary of social justice to fleece people even more easily. 

While everybody is celebrating Pauline Porizkova’s inane letter, somebody is pouting because the letter stole her right to see herself as a victim. Remember, the worst thing you can do to a first-world person is tell them they are less pitiful than somebody else somewhere on the planet. 

19 thoughts on “Friday Link Encyclopedia 

  1. Is Israeli Wonder Woman Star Gal Gadot White or a Person of Color?
    From Jews to Neo-Nazis, everyone’s got an opinion

    I showed my mother Gadot’s photo, and both of us agreed she is white. My mother even thought this whole discussion was a sign of antisemitism. However, an Israeli journalist explained well his opposite position:

    Yes, Ashkenazi Jews (Including Gal Gadot) Are People of Color

    I still think my mother is (and her fully Jewish parents were) white. May be, hating the term “people of color” applied to them is a sign of my own internalized racism and ‘European / Western is superior’ attitude.

    I read about a new category in the 2020 US Census:

    ” A proposed new ethnic category for individuals of Middle Eastern and North African (“MENA”) descent may be added to the United States Census for the first time in forty years. The White House Office of Management and Budget will make a final decision regarding the form, and Congress would need to approve this proposal by 2018 in time to include the new category in the 2020 Census. Currently, individuals who identify as Middle Eastern, Arab, or North African are considered white. MENA individuals are restricted in choosing a white, black, or Asian classification on the Census—thus, their identities are not fully or accurately reflected. This new category will allow MENA individuals to specify their national origins, such as Lebanese or Syrian, and ethnic affiliations, such as Kurdish or Coptic. “


    1. “Is Israeli Wonder Woman Star Gal Gadot White or a Person of Color?”

      • As I keep saying, the whole concept of “people of color” is nothing but a way for the truly privileged to “me, me, me” their way into somebody else’s suffering.


    2. “May be, hating the term ‘people of color’ applied to them is a sign of my own internalized racism and ‘European / Western is superior’ attitude.”

      Baloney. The term “people of color” is a ridiculous, pseudo-progressive neologism that simply means “everybody in the entire world who isn’t considered white.”

      It was coined by the self-righteous lefties as a convenient way to divide the human race into two classes of people: the evil oppressors of humanity (white people), and the downtrodden victims of white oppression (everybody else).


  2. Since you’ve written about drugs at length, I thought you may be interested:

    \ The Health Ministry is worried about the widespread use of prescription painkillers in Israel, the use of which rose two and a half times, or 150 percent, in the past five years. That, according to data on opioid prescriptions submitted to the ministry by the country’s health maintenance organizations. Drug rehabilitation clinics and centers have reported a rise in the number of people needing treatment for narcotics addiction. Health Ministry officials say that unless the trend is reversed, Israel could find itself in a situation like that in the United States, where opioid abuse is an epidemic.


  3. I am proud to announce …

    David Grossman, our very own world-famous author
    Op-ed: The winning novel of the 2017 Man Booker International Prize represents not only an author with an unusual ability to write, filled with compassion and humor, but also Grossman’s upbringing: A childhood in Jerusalem as the son of Holocaust survivors.,7340,L-4976233,00.html

    Have you read any novels by Israeli authors? If you may wish to, prabably as a part of The Intellectual Renewal Challenge 🙂 , I recommend Amos Oz’s “A Tale of Love and Darkness.” It is beautifully written and tells about the early days of the state of Israel.


  4. That article on “video games equal jobs” is about as divorced from reality as you can get.

    The author doesn’t seem to understand that “jobs” put food on the table, pay the rent, and provide for other absolutely essential elements of survival. Compulsive video gaming as he describes it reminds me of the Chinese opium dens of the nineteenth century, where Chinese citizens who had external means of support (family) would spend the day wasting away in a fantasy delirium while dreaming of their imaginary greatness.

    On the other hand, the article is an excellent, if unwitting, argument AGAINST the concept of a UBI. Seriously, the government is supposed to use taxpayer money to allow useless, non-productive idiots to spend their lives in their parents’ basements, doing nothing but “empowering” themselves by playing “sci-fi CEO”?


    1. Essential elements of survival are guaranteed in developed countries. Yes, the article is totally about the UBI which already exists under a variety of names. This is why I keep saying that nobody but smug neoliberal fools are in favor of UBI.


      1. On the other hand, the article is an excellent, if unwitting, argument AGAINST the concept of a UBI. Seriously, the government is supposed to use taxpayer money to allow useless, non-productive idiots to spend their lives in their parents’ basements, doing nothing but “empowering” themselves by playing “sci-fi CEO”?
        Yes, the article is totally about the UBI which already exists under a variety of names. This is why I keep saying that nobody but smug neoliberal fools are in favor of UBI

        Apparently many people who argue for a UBI would rather subsidize that then solve the problem of people who don’t have jobs and aren’t productive full members of society. Someone lost in the world of video games and other online errata is unlikely to give a shit about the political process or fight for anything or upset the apple cart.
        When people attempt to create jobs, they run into the problem of whether those jobs are “good jobs”. If everyone (or the most important people in someone’s life) thinks that whatever job you have is useless and make-work then the psychological benefits of having the job are destroyed. Lectures and admonishments about terrible work habits and ethic and pride have no effect on this person. Can you imagine any good government jobs program coming from people who think and say, “Government jobs are pointless shitty cancer stains full of make work, no exceptions except the armed forces and prison guards and police and my specific job?”

        It’s more convenient for the elites to go, “well here, enjoy your UBI and your addictive time consuming nonsense.”


  5. RE: Student course evaluations

    The problem with student evaluations is that students are not qualified to evaluate what is and is not good teaching. They don’t have any knowledge of teaching methodologies, with the possible exception of juniors and seniors who are education majors.


  6. Discussion question:

    In Yuval Harari’s “Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind” I read that in order to understand a culture, one has to understand its basic, interent clash of values, such as the clash between liberty and common good in modern American culture, or the clash between Christian values and chivalry (military values in this code of conduct) in medieval Europe.

    Therefore, Harari talks about the importance of finding where this central clash lies for one’s Muslim neighbors (in Europe?). However, he doesn’t give his interpretation for some reason, so I decided to ask the views of the blogs’ readers.

    It could be an interesting exercise to find this clash in other cultures, f.e. in Russian and Ukrainian ones.

    Btw, Clarissa, I haven’t expected to see you posting anything good about Russian-speaking culture, so I was pleasantly surprised to read the linked post. Enjoyed Kenan Malik.’s post too.

    As for “Goodthink for teens,” I thought the simplest solution would be not posting anything under one’s real name, but then it would probably be interpreted by colleges as an unpardonable lack of leadership qualities and as a sign of being a weird, technologically-challenged person who doesn’t care about present social issues (or whatever the official term is) .


    1. You think it’s a nice post about our culture? 🙂🙂 It’s the difference of perception, I guess. I thought the part about no personal space was pretty damning. It gave me a headache just to read about it


    2. As for this Harari fellow, I don’t have anything to say because the premise sounds very forced and unconvincing to me. One can invent any values, assign them to a culture and then argue wit h them. But what’s the point?


  7. Re: the london fire, along come the libertarians with hot takes about how these deaths aren’t so bad, after all it’s just a matter of cost-benefits. Regulations are a burden, blah blah. These freaks.

    Nice rebuttal:

    “McArdle argues that fireproofing will increase unit building costs and the negative effect this has is that people have to live farther away and commute for longer periods of time. But if this is true, then it is true of fireproofing in general. The Kensington mansions that have substantial fireproofing also have the exact same detrimental effect on rents. And so if it can be determined that those effects are so negative that fireproofing is a net negative, then fireproofing should be banned. Allowing an owner of a Kensington mansion to fireproof their home is to allow the owner to literally kill other people.”


  8. I was rereading your Holocaust Studies series and read:

    “The other large group that Hitler detested and wanted eradicated were Slavs. I will write about his beef with the Slavs, as well. But it’s a very different approach that Hitler had to Jews.”

    You have not written about the Slavs, so I wanted to ask what his problem was.


    1. In short, he was upset they were occupying such huge territories and inhabiting them so sparsely when Germans were running out of Lebensraum, or space to exist (a big concept for Nazis.)


  9. News vs. Reportage in English media:


    [16.06.17 , 20:02] Three terrorists are shot and neutralized by security forces near the Damascus Gate in Jerusalem after carrying out combined shooting and stabbing attack; border policewoman Hadas Malka, 23, later succumbs to her wounds at the hospital. four others [Israeli Jews] were wounded.


    BBC Whitewashes Terrorists: “Three Palestinians Killed After Deadly Stabbing”

    Analysis: ISIS and Hamas contended for responsibility for the Friday attack in Jerusalem, but all the signs show that this is a spontaneous local terrorist cell; Israel responds in a measured manner with the main goal being to isolate the terrorists and their families and not to harm the population; Maybe not a full-blown intifada, but Israel is still suffering from a wave of terror.


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