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More adventurous than the average bear

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Monday, November 16, 2015

Links - 16th November 2015

Harrison Ford Talks About "Star Wars: The Force Awakens” in a Hotdog Costume - YouTube

Has Bernie Sanders Peaked?

Kim Davis Uproar Shows How Lawlessness Is Only Okay When Liberals Do It - "Take, for example, Democrat Gavin Newsom, who is currently the California lieutenant governor. Back in 2004, when gay marriage was banned under California state law, Newsom openly defied the law and used his power as the mayor of San Francisco to force taxpayer-funded government clerks to issue gay marriage licenses... Just like Kim Davis, who is an elected Democrat, Newsom justified his lawlessness by citing his own conscience and beliefs about right and wrong rather than deferring to the actual laws of his state. If you look for evidence of gay rights advocates chastising Newsom for his blatant lawlessness, you won’t find it. Because it doesn’t exist. You similarly won’t find any evidence of these principled law enforcement purists chastising California state officials for refusing to enforce or defend the Prop 8 ballot initiative in California, which was passed overwhelmingly by California voters."

'Fake alcohol' can make you tipsy - "participants in an experiment who were told they were drinking vodka, but were not, were more swayed by misleading information and more certain their memory was correct than those who were told they were drinking tonic water... "Even on plain tonic water, the male students flirted with Seema as she conducted the experiment and the girls giggled a lot.""

How young women in China become mistresses - "Shanshan never referred to Wu as her boyfriend; he was her ‘man’, her ‘lover’, and occasionally her ‘uncle’. When she said ‘boyfriend’, she meant the man her own age back in Sichuan with whom she spent much of her free day exchanging text messages and whom she saw twice a year... K
eeping a woman is common among powerful Chinese men. A study by the Crisis Management Centre at Renmin University in Beijing, published this January, showed that 95 per cent of corrupt officials had illicit affairs, usually paid for, and 60 per cent of them had kept a mistress. Until recent crackdowns forced greater discretion, Chinese official life had two social circles. As the mobster Henry Hill puts it in the filmGoodfellas (a key reference point for Chinese provincial officialdom): ‘Saturday night was for wives, but Friday night at the Copa was always for the girlfriends’... ‘If you’re an official, you have to have a mistress, or at least a girlfriend,’ Xiaoxue said, ‘otherwise you’re not a real man. I used to have this friend who was a fake mistress. She was best friends with a gay guy — not a “duck” [male prostitute], just a normal gay guy — who was an official’s boyfriend. So the official would pay her to come out with him and pretend to be his mistress’... She distinguished being a mistress from short-term hostessing, where you had to be a perfect servant, always putting the man’s needs first. ‘If you’re too nice to him all the time, he’ll know it isn’t true,’ Xiaoxue said. ‘If he looks at another woman, you should be jealous and sulk all evening until he apologises, so he knows you care’... ‘I liked him so much I even arranged a threesome for his birthday. And I paid the other girl!’... Shanshan and her friends seem less like victims and more like players, aware of the limits of their work and astutely using the vulnerabilities of powerful men for their own ends"

Search Folder for all Meeting related messages -

PRODUCTIVITY IN SINGAPORE’S CONSTRUCTION SECTOR - "Japan's construction productivity levels averages 0.44 square—metres per manday (Table 1.3). This is from data obtained by the Management Research Society for Construction Research, Japan for more than 900 building projects of various types. The level of finishes and building services between Japan and Singapore can be considered to be similar although Japanese high rise buildings have to be designed for earthquake protection and higher wind loads. Broadly speaking, therefore, Japan’s productivity levels are about 30 percent higher than Singapore (based on an average 0.34 square—metres per manday... If we consider a highly industrialised country like Finland, we find a very high construction productivity level averaging 0.55 square-metres per manday (Figure 1.5). This is 60 percent higher than Singapore’s productivity levels"

These Famous Authors Made It Okay To Commit Grammar No-No's - "Jane Austen did not neglect to use double negatives in her writing. Often, as in the example above, she used redundancy to denote a character's snootiness. To show that the grand dame of Highbury was hesitant to act excited about a dinner party, Austen chooses to express her support convolutedly. The effect, more often than not, was to note the humor in the pretentiousness of high society."

Jamie Bartlett: How the mysterious dark net is going mainstream - "every single vendor on these sites uses a pseudonym, naturally enough, but they keep the same pseudonym to build up a reputation. And because it's easy for the buyer to change allegiance whenever they want, the only way of trusting a vendor is if they have a good history of positive feedback from other users of the site. And this introduction of competition and choice does exactly what the economists would predict. Prices tend to go down, product quality tends to go up, and the vendors are attentive, they're polite, they're consumer-centric, offering you all manner of special deals, one-offs, buy-one-get-one-frees, free delivery, to keep you happy"

Timeline Photos - Inclusive Mosque Initiative - "
"I never wear my hijab the same way, just because my mood changes all the time. I love the turban, I love the Arab style hijab, I love wearing a simple woolly hat and I love wearing a nice Panama hat. Covering my head is a part of me. And just to disturb the Islamophobic system I would keep doing it. I also decided to shave my head. You wanna see what’s under that hijab? Sorry boo, no long black hair soft and shiny like you may imagine in your 1001 Nights fantasy. I’m not Jasmine from Aladdin."
[The image shows a self described black arab woman standing in front of a wall and some foliage wearing a black turban, red lipstick, black hoop earrings, beaded braclets and a sleeveless denim dress. Her body is turned at a slight angle, She has tattoos across her right upper arm and across the top of her chest]"
Shouldn't you cover your arms before your hair? Aren't tattoos haram?

Study shows US liberals think WEIRD (in a good way) - "American liberals are significantly more likely to think analytically, and American conservatives think more holistically — so holistically that conservative thought styles are more similar to Chinese survey participants than American liberals. This led Talhelm to call liberals, in what was for me the sweetest twist of irony when reading this, “extreme Americans.”... in order to have a productive debate, analytical liberals need to realize that conservatives aren’t necessarily ignoring facts. Instead, they are thinking about things in a fundamentally different way. Encouraging analytical thinking by conservatives, and holistic thinking by liberals, or at least encouraging both sides to recognize their cognitive differences before fighting about their political ones, could lead to more amicable (and productive) debates; and maybe, in the long term, a friendlier democratic discourse."

Associations, Civic Norms, and Democracy: Revisiting the Italian Case - "By exploring associational life in early modern Italy, which the arguments of neo-Tocquevillians such as Robert Putnam explore, this article critically reconsiders the effects of associations upon democracy. By revealing how rich associational life resulted in the establishment of Fascism, I argue that associations do not necessarily contribute to the stabilization of democracy"

Phenylthiocarbamide Detection and Political Ideology - "Phenylthiocarbamide (PTC) is an organosulfur chemical with the distinctive property of tasting very bitter or being virtually tasteless, depending on the genetic makeup of the taster. The ability to taste PTC is a dominant genetic trait controlled by the gene TAS2R38, located on chromosome 7. Since previous research has indicated that conservatives tend to be more attentive to their environments than liberals, including reacting more strongly to disgusting, harmful and threatening stimuli, they may be more likely to fall among those that can taste the bitter PTC. Here we test for a linkage between PTC detection and political orientations. Preliminary results indicate that there is a relationship between these variables, suggesting that the presence of TAS2R38 has an indirect relationship with political orientation."

Cereal Killer cafe owner says he had to barricade door to protect children from anti-gentrification protesters - "The Cereal Killer cafe in Shoreditch was attacked with paint and had the word "scum" daubed on it by demonstrators taking part in a "F*** parade" protest against renewal and rebuilding in the area accompanied by an influx of more affluent residents at the expense of poorer people. Alan Keery, who opened the cafe with his brother Gary last year, was in the shop with several customers at the time of the attack. He said he had to barricade the doors to stop the demonstrators entering. He told Sky News: "It was just crazy. Two hundred people turned up with torches, throwing paint and stuff at the window."

Surprise findings in sexual abuse victim study - "people who are sexually abused as children... are five times more likely than other members of the population to be charged with some sort of offence"

When Can Kids Walk to School Alone? - "There has been a huge drop in the number of kids who walk or bike to school regularly. According to the National Center for Safe Routes to School, in 1969, 48 percent of K-8th grade students walked or bicycled to school. But by 2009, only 13 percent did. But according to a 2012 report from Safe Kids USA, streets are actually getting safer for kids. The child pedestrian injury rates are down significantly since 1995 -- mostly because of increased education to parents and better traffic infrastructure surrounding schools, such as sidewalks and crossing guards."

The Real Reason Why Asian Americans Are Outmarrying Less - Speakeasy - WSJ - "“This may sound weird, but when I was in my 20s, I really thought I should marry a non-Asian because I wanted to have mixed race children,” says Mina Lim, an editor and writer who lives in Baltimore. “I thought the human race needed to evolve, and I wanted to be part of the ‘beige-ing’ of the planet.” Lim’s first marriage, which ended in 2003 — a half-decade after it began — was to a non-Asian, and she says that during their relationship, she constantly felt self-conscious. “If there happened to be another Asian girl-white guy couple, it always seemed awkward, especially if we got seated at adjacent tables,” she says. “And one of the worst experiences I had was traveling to Asia back in the late 1990s. Everyone we met thought I was his translator. Meanwhile, he expected me to have some kind of miraculous, mystical connection with my ‘homeland.’” A few years after she and her first husband divorced, Lim met and then married an Asian American guy, and they’ve been happily together ever since. “It’s easier,” she says. “With him, I feel like I can just be myself.” Mina says that that’s the case despite the fact that she and her husband aren’t of the same ethnic background. Although her family is Filipina and his is Taiwanese, there’s enough that’s just “understood” about their respective backgrounds that, in her words, “there’s no having to explain things” — important stuff, like the centrality of family and the significance of education; silly stuff, like taking your shoes off when you enter the house... more Asian Americans seem to be marrying Asian Americans that aren’t their particular flavor of Asian American... More Asians are marrying Asians because there are more of them around."

More Asian-Americans Marrying Within Their Race - The New York Times - "Because she had never dated an Asian man before, her friends tried to discourage Stephen Arboleda, a Filipino-American engineer, when he asked whether she was single. “She only dates white guys,” they warned. But Mr. Arboleda, 33, was undeterred. “I’m going to change that,” he told them."

The Rise of Intermarriage - "About 24% of all black male newlyweds in 2010 married outside their race, compared with just 9% of black female newlyweds. Among Asians, the gender pattern runs the other way. About 36% of Asian female newlyweds married outside their race in 2010, compared with just 17% of Asian male newlyweds. Intermarriage rates among white and Hispanic newlyweds do not vary by gender... Couples formed between an Asian husband and a white wife topped the median earning list among all newlyweds in 2008-2010 ($71,800). During this period, white male newlyweds who married Asian, Hispanic or black spouses had higher combined earnings than did white male newlyweds who married a white spouse. As for white female newlyweds, those who married a Hispanic or black husband had somewhat lower combined earnings than those who “married in,” while those who married an Asian husband had significantly higher combined earnings... Several studies using government data have found that overall divorce rates are higher for couples who married out than for those who married in"
When the man in an interracial marriage waas Asian, the combined earnings were highest. Obviously....
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