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More adventurous than the average bear

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Sunday, April 29, 2018

Links - 29th April 2018 (2)

Is Donald Trump, of All Presidents, Devolving Power Back to the Legislative Branch? - "Trump has on multiple occasions taken an executive-branch power-grab and kicked the issue back to Congress, where it belongs. As detailed here last month, the president has taken this approach on Iran sanctions, Obamacare subsidies, and the Deferred Action Against Childhood Arrivals program (DACA), at minimum. And notably, his one Supreme Court nominee, Neil Gorsuch, was most famous pre-appointment for rejecting the deference that courts have in recent decades given to executive-branch regulatory agencies interpreting the statutory language of legislators. Are there any other examples? Sure—the 15 regulatory nullifications this year via the Congressional Review Act (14 more than all previous presidents combined) are definitionally power-transfers from the executive to legislative. And certainly, the sharp decreases in the enactment, proposal, and even page-count of regulations amount to the administration declining to exercise as much power as its predecessors."

Getting upset over trivial matters? There’s a rational explanation - "When truly bad things happen, they cross a threshold, triggering mechanisms that help us to recover. To use one of Gilbert’s examples: if a woman discovers her husband has been having an affair, she may draw on all her powers of rationalisation, convincing herself it was something he had to get out of his system, or that it’s a crisis from which they’ll emerge stronger. By contrast, if his only fault is leaving dirty dishes in the sink, her cognitive defences won’t kick in. So her anger at the lesser failing may bubble longer."

Singaporean Guy Attends Taiwan and Japan Adult Expo To Apply For JAV Porn Actor Role - Turritopsis Dohrnii - "Last June 2017, Singaporean Teo En Ming (known commonly as Turritopsis Dohrnii on the internet), attended the Taiwan Adult Expo 2017 to apply as JAV Porn Actor. Unfortunately, his application was denied, but that didn’t diminish his optimism. He then went on to Japan Adult Expo 2017 to apply as JAV Porn Actor (again), without detailing whether his application was accepted or not this time. On Facebook, Turritopsis Dohrnii posted: “I am going to keep on trying until I successfully become a JAV actor.”"

Japan accepted only 3 refugees in six months and won’t change its migration policy - "Japan’s Prime Minister, Shinzo Abe, told his parliament on Monday that he has “no intention” of accepting more migrants. During his debate he said that foreign nationals will only be permitted “where they are truly needed” to “keep Japan’s economy and infrastructure sustainable”. A week ago the United Nations refugee agency urged Japan to accept more refugees after it became clear the country had only accepted 3 refugees in the first half of 2017. Last year Japan accepted 28 refugees in 12 months... According to the 2017 Global Peace Index Japan is ranked as one of the safest countries in the world"

MGTOW: Teen boys now joining ‘Men Going Their Own Way’ movement - "Tom*, 15, from NSW is what you could call the growing number of TGTOW (Teens Going Their Own Way). “It’s probably not true of all women, but I’ve got the feeling that women are dangerous. Maybe the men around me have just had bad experiences,” he tells “It’s scary being a teenage boy; I’m not sure how it’s all meant to fit together in the future,” says Tom. “Last year, my uncle lost everything because his wife of 40 years decided she didn’t love him anymore. Just like that, she randomly got up and left. It got nasty and he lost everything — his house, cars and loads of his money. There’s no way I’m ever getting married.”"

“Everything is problematic” - "my political worldview has steadily grown and evolved and refined itself. I no longer pine for revolution. I don’t hate capitalism or the state as if those were the names of the people who killed my dog. My politics still lean to the left, just not quite so far, and now I view economic and political systems with an engineer’s eye, rather than in the stark colours of moral outrage. I am just as passionate about queer activism and feminism as I ever was, and aspire to be an ally to other anti-oppressive movements just as much as I ever did. I feel like I have a richer and more nuanced understanding of anti-oppressive politics and ethics than ever before... I need to tell people what was wrong with the activism I was engaged in, and why I bailed out. I have many fond memories from that time, but all in all, it was the darkest chapter of my life. I used to endorse a particular brand of politics that is prevalent at McGill and in Montreal more widely. It is a fusion of a certain kind of anti-oppressive politics and a certain kind of radical leftist politics. This particular brand of politics begins with good intentions and noble causes, but metastasizes into a nightmare. In general, the activists involved are the nicest, most conscientious people you could hope to know. But at some point, they took a wrong turn, and their devotion to social justice led them down a dark path... I’ve pinned down four core features that make it so disturbing: dogmatism, groupthink, a crusader mentality, and anti-intellectualism"

Can you be a feminist and still enjoy a catcall? - "Sofia Vergara is the latest to enter the conversation: In an interview published in Net-a-Porter‎’s the Edit, the Modern Family star came down on the side of the vocal romancers. “Watching myself age onscreen is awful,” she said. “It just makes me want to kill myself, but what can I do? I’ll be sad when the wolf whistles stop.”... One retirement-age woman I know has told me that she remembers very vividly the year she stopped attracting comments on the street, and how it made her grapple with her body’s visible signs of aging that she’d never noticed before. She felt relieved, and also disappointed, and also amazed that it seemed like men could tell, even from far away, that she was too old to be a sex object... Vergara is from Colombia; in many Latin American countries, catcalling is more prevalent and accepted than it is in U.S. cities. If a woman derives self-confidence from external approval, she might be more inclined to accept random, shouted praise of her looks as a compliment. And such comments may land differently on the ears of women who mostly experience street harassment in the form of insults (“fatcalling”) rather than come-ons. “I am far more likely to have people yell ‘fatty’ at me on the street,” one woman told me. “So yeah, if a guy is nice and smiley at me, I don’t get that sense of fear, and it is a little bit flattering.”... I’ve never seen men yell greetings at other men as they’re biking past or walking briskly with their heads down—to me, that’s one way men wield disproportionate power over women in public spaces... appearance-based flattery takes on a completely different form, with a more balanced power dynamic, when it’s woman-to-woman"
Greeting people means you have disproportionate power over them, apparently
Power dynamics are a great way to justify double standards. Maybe the author would be okay with a butch lesbian catcalling her even if she didn't like it

Military-Trained Police May Be Less Hasty To Shoot, But That Got This Vet Fired - "Police Chief Rob Alexander told Mader that he was being fired for putting his fellow officers' lives in danger."

Jeremy Corbyn's grammar schools crusade sets him against Labour's working-class voters - "The party's opposition to academically selective schools harks back to Anthony Crosland, who infamously swore he would destroy every grammar school in the country "if it's the last thing I do"... If they don't like grammar schools so much, they're free not to send their children there (Seumas Milne seems to have missed the memo). I wrote yesterday about the widespread support parents have for creating more grammar schools, concuding that if Theresa May wanted to meet that demand, why should Labour stand in her way?"
Equality means pulling other people down

Two thirds of British Muslims would not give police terror tip-offs - "Former chairman of the Equality and Human Rights Commission, Trevor Phillips, described this revelation as “astonishing” and “troubling”... more than half of Muslims think that homosexuality should be illegal in Britain and 23 per cent of Muslims want Sharia to replace British law in certain parts of the country... five per cent of Muslims sympathised with people who took part in stoning adulterers... Mr Phillips said the survey showed “the unacknowledged creation of a nation within the nation, with its own geography, its own values and its own very separate future.” He said: “For a long time, I too thought that Europe’s Muslims would become like previous waves of migrants, gradually abandoning their ancestral ways, wearing their religious and cultural baggage lightly, and gradually blending into Britain’s diverse identity landscape.” He said that the integration of Muslims requires a more “muscular approach to integration”

A letter to … my wife, who won’t get a job while I work myself to death - "You keep busy volunteering, exercising and pursuing a variety of hobbies. You socialise with similarly situated women who also choose to remain outside the paid workforce. You all complain about various financial pressures, but never once consider, at least audibly, that you could alleviate the stress on both your budgets and your burnt-out husbands by earning some money yourselves."

What you read matters more than you might think - "what students read in college directly affects the level of writing they achieve. In fact, researchers found that reading content and frequency may exert more significant impacts on students’ writing ability than writing instruction and writing frequency. Students who read academic journals, literary fiction, or general nonfiction wrote with greater syntactic sophistication (more complex sentences) than those who read fiction (mysteries, fantasy, or science fiction) or exclusively web-based aggregators like Reddit, Tumblr, and BuzzFeed. The highest scores went to those who read academic journals; the lowest scores went to those who relied solely on web-based content. Recent research also revealed that “deep reading”—defined as reading that is slow, immersive, rich in sensory detail and emotional and moral complexity—is distinctive from light reading—little more than the decoding of words"

A juice company dumped orange peels in a national park. Here's what it looks like now. - "Compared to the adjacent plot, which was dominated by a single species of tree, the site of the orange peel deposit featured two dozen species of vegetation, most thriving"

Estimates of Lifetime Extradyadic Sex Using a Hybrid of Randomized Response Technique and Crosswise Design. - "the estimated rates of EDS in two subsamples were higher among men, homosexuals, those who have or had wages, and those who accepted extramarital sex. The levels of EDS varying with sociodemographics were different between the married and the unmarried."

Young people are now more right-wing and authoritarian in their views than previous generations - "Britain’s young people are now more right-wing and authoritarian in their political outlook than the previous generation, undermining the prevailing view that younger people tend to be more progressive in attitude... "They’re much less concerned about religious beliefs or whether you’re gay, lesbian or straight, which people were previously more concerned about. They are much more accepting of diversity, but they are also much more accepting of economic inequality.”

Men Systemize. Women Empathize. - "men were very focused on the ingredients of a recipe and how to prepare it, women, on the other hand, browsed up and down the page more and were less focused – as seen by the wider, more diffused ‘hot’ band. Both heatmaps confirm that men were far more systematic in their behavior on the site while women fit far more the empathizing cognitive style. Gender differences impact many aspects of life—one being shopping behavior.
A study titled “Men Buy, Women Shop” revealed significant differences between the shopping behaviors of men and women. According to Wharton’s marketing professor Stephen J. Hoch, “Women think of shopping in an interpersonal, human fashion, and men treat it as more instrumental. It’s a job to get done,” he says, adding that this data has implications for businesses that are interested in developing a more segmented approach to building and maintaining loyalty among male and female customers. The study found that women are more focused on the experience, men on the mission. Women react more strongly than men to personal interactions with sales associates, while men are more likely to respond to the more utilitarian aspects of the experience—such as the availability of parking, whether the item they need is in stock, and the length of the checkout line... Segmenting by gender is crucial if businesses are to make their websites more enjoyable, empower their visitors, and ultimately, increase their revenues"
Feminism is bad for business

Sorting, Quotas, and the Civil Rights Act of 1991: Who Hires When It’s Hard to Fire? - "The Civil Rights Act of 1991 (CRA91) was enacted after a rancorous debate about whether it was a “quota” hiring bill or a necessary means of opening labor markets. We analyze the effects of CRA91 on the composition of firms’ workforces. We consider employer behavior when firms vary in their susceptibility to discrimination suits and when firms can reduce exposure to discrimination claims by employing more protected workers. These forces lead to a sorting effect, which causes firms that are more susceptible to discrimination litigation to substitute away from protected workers, and a quota effect, which causes firms with fewer pre‐CRA91 protected workers to substitute toward these workers. Using data from various sources, we find evidence consistent with CRA91 having had a sorting effect. We find no evidence that CRA91 led to widespread quota hiring and no evidence that CRA91 helped integrate industries that had employed relatively few protected workers."
In other words, anti-discrimination employment legislation is bad for the target groups, who are less likely to be employed

Chinese tourists are everywhere, but why are foreign visitors shunning China? - "Chinese tourists made 30 million more trips abroad than foreigners made to China in 2015. Those numbers remained largely unchanged last year, Miao said. “Take away the three areas, and there was a big number of foreign tourists who were actually Chinese nationals living abroad. So the number of foreign visitors was really small, which is inconsistent with China’s growth in general”... More than 60 per cent of foreign tourists visiting mainland China are from Asia – mainly from South Korea and Japan... China also had the world’s lowest percentage of foreign students, he said. Of its 35 million university students, some 200,000 – or less than 1 per cent – were foreign. The number of long-term foreign residents, including students, was also low at about 800,000... “If there are not so many expats here, there are not so many people coming to visit them, or sending kids to study here”"

ADHD as a Fictitious Disease - "In my opinion there are no conditions that would warrant psychiatric drugs. Antidepressants do nothing and can generate suicidal behavior among children of all ages. ADHD as a so-called disease is fictitious... When they are too out of control there needs to be family therapy, and behavioral therapy, and the school needs to be adaptive. There is often trauma present with severely out of control children. Amphetamines are dangerous drugs. I disagree with their use. Likewise with other issues, there should be family work. Other drugs like benzodiazepines are also very destructive. With a good therapy things can work out very well... Most issues with kids are family issues in the first place"
There're interesting links to trans issues too

Dr. Leon Eisenberg — ADHD Is a 'Fictitious Disease'? - "it is an invention. Every child who’s not doing well in school is sent to see a pediatrician, and the pediatrician says: “It’s ADHD; here’s Ritalin.” In fact, 90 percent of these 5.4 million kids don’t have an abnormal dopamine metabolism. The problem is, if a drug is available to doctors, they’ll make the corresponding diagnosis."

Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher and Mark Hamill recreating the Star Wars poster in 1977 : OldSchoolCool

First-rate engineering : interestingasfuck
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