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Music as Shibboleths: Heresy, heresy, they've all got it... No that doesn't work.|
It enchants me that carols are the mutated memes of some of the oldest bits of music and words in still in popular use - and a precious connection with folk long gone.
I don't know if 'Felix Culpa' (felicitous fall) is still heresy in the CoE but it was one of the carols we weren't allowed to sing in the church choir. The words are at least 600 years old, but I just love the fact that they sound old - Middle English I think - although Wikipedia suggests it's some kind of macaroni, but omits to explain how. I keep fancying I can see the word 'mown' as related to the Welsh word 'moyn', meaning 'want' or 'want to' rather than 'must'. But one word can't be the basis of being macaroni so I'm probably wrong.
I really love this version, despite it being a new tune, as it's so evocative of its time.
Tags: music as shibboleths
Blossom - photo a day|
Fab Christmas lunch with the IT folk from CUED - some unfamiliar faces in with a lot of old friends. Lovely to see them all, and also to see Matthew having lots of fun! We left a little before the party broke up at he was shattered, and fell straight asleep in the pram - giving me a chance to get the last three Chekzgmas presents before heading for a much better than last week bus home - 40 minutes quicker, and he slept pretty much the whole way. He's been pretty cheerful the rest of the day at home too. Wonderful day.
It's been beautifully crisp and sunny today too, which let me take a few of my favourite sort of snaps, with bright sunshine and vivid blue skies. And on Trumpington Street the almond blossom which I love to see each year is already out. Lots more photos saved up for January, but this one is my choice for today.
Current Location: United Kingdom, England,Cambridgeshire,South Cambridgeshire District, Great Shelford
Tags: via ljapp
po8crg has made my day by telling me that if a foreigner is appointed to the House of Lords, they're automatically naturalized.
So this is now my plan. Rather than saving up loads of money and having to fill in forms and prove every aspect of my life that involves paperwork to the satisfaction of the immigration services, all of which is unbelievably shit and stressful and dehumanizing, I'm just going to be a peer.
And then you're in the House of Lords! They pay you a lot of money just to do that!
diffrentcolours asked if I can be Baroness of Minnesota, but apparently you can be "of" anywhere you like, so I've determined I'm going to be Baroness of the Moon. I like the Moon.
Tags: britain, foreignness, whimsy
Millennials: Hold ‘Obamacare’ hostage|
Refusing to buy health insurance may be our only political hope
America has a hard time figuring out how to approach millennials. On the one hand, young people are reserves of boundless potential, eligible for hundreds of thousands of dollars in cheap education loans to develop their human capital. On the other, employers are so awash in capable young recruits that some industries have stopped paying entry-level hires at all. Politicians spend precious campaign dollars doing youth outreach, then blow off the issues that matter to us. Now the Affordable Care Act (ACA), the keystone to the president’s legacy, needs buy-in from millennials more than anyone else. The question is whether we will — or should — show up.
For any group insurance policy to work, it needs a diversified risk pool, and the ACA is no exception. The mix of enlistees has to include people who tend to be healthy, like young people, to offset those who are more likely to get sick, such as those who are older. Grouping risky and less risky people is how insurance providers are theoretically able to keep premiums low, and if the ACA can’t — or if Americans think it can’t — make insurance affordable, the program might never get off the ground. There are some safeguards designed to protect the system from immediate failure, but for the plan to work, it needs young people to buy in.
The fear among the act’s proponents is that young people won’t enroll. Earlier this month Gallup presented new poll numbers about “Obamacare” under the typically alarmist headline “Young Americans least familiar with healthcare law.” Instead, what the numbers reflect are those who have strong — but not necessarily well-informed — opinions on “Obamacare.” Republicans, who have based much of their party identity around ACA opposition rhetoric that has played infamously fast and loose with the facts, are more likely than Democrats to describe themselves as familiar with the law, by a margin of 23 percentage points. Once Gallup is done blaming millennials, they can concede that unfamiliarity with the law is understandable, “given the law’s complexity and that many of its features are still being rolled out.”
( The possibility of total inaction on the ACA gives us enormous leverage. It’s time to use it do what every other interest group in American politics does: Demand everything.Collapse )
Tags: al-jazeera, barack obama, health care
Tea Partiers Miss the Point, Pope is Catholic, etc.|
Tea Party Group Unironically Utilizes Satirical Bioshock Infinite Propaganda
As we head into this holiday season, video game news grows relatively quiet and crazy stories start popping out their heads instead. For a bit of a break from the console wars, we turn to the National Liberty Federation, a conservative “Tea Party” styled group which has recently dipped its toes in the video game realm, albeit by accident.
They recently posted the above image to their Facebook page (found via Kotaku), which is a patriotic portrait of George Washington keeping the Irish, Chinese, Arabs and Africans at bay, demonstrating the statement on the picture: “For God and Country – It Is Our Holy Duty To Guard Against The Foreign Hordes”
Normally, this would just be some good old fashioned racism/isolationism, but as any gamer reading this post will probably know, the image is actually taken from Irrational Games’ BioShock Infinite. The game, out earlier this year, brought players to the fictional city of Columbia, a floating metropolis where the founding fathers are worshiped as gods, and America has become a sort of fetishistic religion. The image is a mural found in the game, and has been used as part of its promotional materials, which is how the National Liberty Foundation likely found it.
The NLF posts a large amount of images like this, though generally not quite so overtly racist, and certainly none filled with quite so much irony. Their Facebook page has 95,000 likes, so it’s not exactly an obscure, unknown group in its home state of Florida.
Here’s their official statement of purpose from their website:
“The National Liberty Federation (NLF) is dedicated to promoting awareness regarding our inalienable rights. Through educational endeavors, public forums and other mass communications, we seek to ensure our citizenry, members of the media, punditry, and government, remain focused on the importance of free enterprise, limited government, fiscal responsibility, individual liberty, and American heritage, as a means for perpetuating a free society.”
I guess “American heritage” somehow goes hand in hand with a “holy duty to guard again the foreign hordes,” even if I can’t quite wrap my head around how those two overlap. Especially since the group in the picture actually includes an American Indian.
The National Liberty Federation has also appropriated other pop culture characters from Braveheart to Duck Dynasty to Charlie Brown to spread their message, though I imagine they’ve never heard of BioShock before. Really, their entire gallery page is made up of the sorts of images your grandparents might forward to with the subject line: “re: fw: fw: re: re: hilarious!!!”
I don’t wish to enter a debate about whether or not the Tea Party is racist as a whole, but this particular sub-group certainly is if they’re saying with a straight face that this Columbia propaganda is a creed Americans should follow. Perhaps there’s some alternate universe where groups like this have their way in the United States, but I’m sure glad I don’t live there.
Tags: propaganda, tea party, the tea party is not racist!, video games
Japanese Man Steals $185K So He Can Feed His 120 Cats Gourmet Meals |
A man stole $185,000 in cash and jewels over the last year not for himself, but so that his 120 cat friends could eat only gourmet food, Japanese police told Agence France Presse Thursday. This is kind of like the story of Les Miserables if you replace Jean Valjean’s sister’s starving children with stray cats and a loaf of bread with precious stones.
“He would give them fresh fish and chicken, not cheap canned food,” said an officer, elaborating, “He said he felt happiest when he rubbed his cheek against the cats.”
Although the unemployed cat burglar only had one cat of his own and 20 in a warehouse nearby, the 25,000 yen ($250) a day kitty buffet was open to the hundred some strays in the neighborhood.
Tags: animals, japan, kitty!
I know I've overdone it but surely admitting that should mean I can go on getting things done?
But I did get dishwasher cycled, unpacked four boxes, tidied the floor, etc. I just need to sleep now. Or eat. Or maybe both.
TEA. I can make tea up here in my eyrie.
Utah Judge: criminalization of "cohabitation" unconstitutional; conservative pearl clutching ensues|
Utah Polygamy Court Ruling On 'Sister Wives' Case Confirms Fears Of Social Conservatives
(RNS) Fueling debates over marriage and religious freedom, a federal judge declared on Dec. 13 Utah laws criminalizing polygamy are unconstitutional, ruling on a case involving the Brown family from TLC’s reality series “Sister Wives.”( Read more...Collapse )
Attorney Jonathan Turley, who argued the case for the Browns, said in a blog post that the decision “was a victory not for polygamy but privacy in America.”
“Utah has achieved something equally important today: true equality of its citizens regardless of their personal faiths or practices,” Turley wrote.
In his ruling, the judge took a narrow interpretation of the words “marry” and “purports to marry,” meaning that bigamy remains illegal, such as when someone fraudulently acquires multiple marriage licenses.
Source is side-eyeing "proponents of traditional marriage" doing a "victory lap" over this. This decision has nothing to do with marriage per se, or with legally recognizing plural marriages. It's about decriminalizing cohabitation. And the idea of a criminal ban on cohabitation in this day and age is fucking ridiculous anyway.
P.S. I HATE the article title, which is fucking inflammatory as well as blatantly misleading. Even copying and pasting it here gives me a headache, but that's what the title is, so.
[Ed. to fix html fail regarding my lj-cut; ed. again to change subject line.]
Tags: court/federal court, law, lawsuits, marriage, mormons, polygamy, utah
Swim trunks & board shorts, with or without packing|
Do you have any advice concerning swim trunks for someone like me who did not have bottom surgery? I'm planning a vacation to Mexico and look forward to wearing swim trunks at the beach and around the pool. I don't usually pack and so I was thinking of buying swim trunks or board shorts (like this: http://www.asos.com/Men/Swimwear/Cat/pgecategory.aspx?cid=13210&r=2#state=Rf1000%3D4228&parentID=Rf1000&pge=0&pgeSize=36&sort=-1). Do you think I need to pack for this or can I get away without packing, esp. after swimming?
Leaked! Harvard’s Grading Rubric|
A longtime government professor at Harvard lashed out Tuesday at what he deemed a system of rampant grade inflation after learning that students are receiving mainly A’s.
— The Boston Globe, Dec. 4
From: The Dean of Harvard College
To: The Faculty
In light of the controversy regarding so-called grade inflation, please take a moment to review the grading guidelines rubric, reproduced below:
( Read more...Collapse )
Tags: college/university, massachusetts, not intended to be a factual statement, not the onion, teachers, the onion
Rick Santorum: Government-Provided Health Care Is A Plot To Kill People Who Don’t Vote The Right Way|
Speaking at a Young Americans for Freedom event on Friday, former Sen. Rick Santorum (R-PA) offered an unusual assessment of what happens when “the government is going to be the principal provider of health care for the country.” “It’s actually a pretty clever system,” the former presidential candidate explained, “Take care of the people who can vote and people who can’t vote, get rid of them as quickly as possible by not giving them care so they can’t vote against you.”
Santorum’s suggestion that elected officials will provide health care to their own voters while getting “rid of” the opposing party’s voters followed a more banal warning that conservatives must fight programs that expand health care because they tend to be popular: “When Thatcher ran for prime minister she said — remember this, this is the Iron Lady — she said, ‘The British national health care system is safe in my hands.’ She wasn’t going to take on health care, because she knew once you have people getting free health care from the government, you can’t take it away from them.”
Yet Santorum’s own example refutes his claim that national health care allows an elected leader to essentially entrench themself by selectively murdering their opposition’s voters. Santorum presents no evidence that Thatcher — or for that matter, any other British Prime Minister — used her country’s National Health Service (NHS) to effectively euthanize people who could vote her out of office. Moreover, if such a conspiracy actually does exist, the folks at the NHS are doing a rather incompetent job of preventing the ruling party from being turned out of office. Thatcher’s own Tories were voted out of power in 1997. The Labour government that succeeded those Tories lost power in 2010. Polls show that, if another election were held today, incumbent Tory Prime Minister David Cameron would himself be cast out of office and Labour would regain a substantial majority in the British Parliament.
So if the NHS wants to protect Cameron from all these people planning to vote Labour, it better start making with the killing pretty soon.
Tags: conspiracy theories, health care, nhs, republicans. lol, rick santorum, tinhats, uk: conservative/tories
Soothe the savage beast|
Out in the cold on my way to work, listening to the music mixes ultraruby made for (of?) 2013. It's totally different from music I normally get to listen to (which is usually dictated by MPR, 6music or Andrew), but I still really like it.
How wonderful, that there are good things in the world that I know nothing about. So distant from my experience so far and yet still compatible with it, adding something good to it.
Especially with how shit I've been feeling lately, I could easily get dizzy on what other such wonders there might be of which I am wholly ignorant. It's a very welcome train of thought.
Tags: i am not lester bangs, the universe is always this amazing
A new sequence maybe?|
A hand that's stuffed with straw won't wave or flop
around when I am talking. Changeling hair
that I can't flick. They stole me, left me there
in my own place. I think there was a shop
they bought me in, one with a changing room
lost me in mirrors reached out pulled me back
love that withdraws you.Somewhere there's a crack
left in my soul. We weave self on a loom
made of the stories that our parents tell
yet we don't hear. The mistress of my soul
harshes the changeling. Yet I can't be whole
until I save his straw and weave it well
I cannot be unjust. I must shed tears
That wizened thing protected me for years.
I've whinged about buying crutches so much, recently, that Rob took some of our Christmas money and bought me a pair! We've adjusted them to fit and I've worked out how to use them when I can't lean on my wrists. Hurrah!
It seems an odd thing to hurrah about, mind.
Music as Shibboleths: Hoc quod optabamus...|
I came quite late to Gaudete - the first time I heard it was when Siôn played me the Medieval Babe's version. The Steeleye Span version completely passed me by - it was interesting to find out that they had been instrumental (ha - their version was a cappela) in reviving what apears to be a very old carol that had almost been forgotten.
The above version has just been released by Erasure. Still trying to work out if I like it.
Tags: music as shibboleths
Christmas tree - photo a day|
Our tree arrived today! Having bought a real one for the first time in many years it was time to buy some more decorations, particularly as my existing ones were all pale purple and silver. I much prefer a multicoloured tree, but it seems monochrome is very in, so to get red, blue and gold I had to buy three packs of baubles! 33 bits of thread later they now all have strings, and many of them are now on the tree. Only two broken in the process - oops! Matthew was fascinated watching us start the decorating (which may not have helped Mike get him to sleep). Overall I'm pretty happy with it, and it smells lovely.
Current Location: United Kingdom, England,Cambridgeshire,South Cambridgeshire District, Great Shelford
Tags: via ljapp
Let's explode some more homophobes' heads|
Look up. The sky still isn't falling.
This entry was originally posted at http://jessie-c.dreamwidth.org/410793.html. You may comment here or there as you wish. LJ's plague of spammers has forced me to turn off anonymous commenting. If you wish to comment anonymously, please come over to the Dreamwidth URL above.
Tags: life; that thing what happens
NYC settles lawsuit over police purposely breaking pianist's thumb during OWS protest|
The city will pay out an $82,500 settlement to an Occupy Wall Street activist who claims police beat him up and arrested him three times - the last instance booking him on a years-old public urination warrant for someone else, the Daily News has learned.
Shawn Schrader, 24, said the beatdowns left him with a bleeding ear, a hurt thumb and nightmares about cops.
"I settled my lawsuit because the police lawyers made it clear they would fight me tooth and nail on every claim," Schrader told The News. All charges against Schrader stemming from the three arrests were dropped.
In the final arrest, on May 2012, Schrader claims intelligence officers used the urination warrant as a bogus excuse to suppress his free speech, interrogate him and throw a monkey wrench in the May Day protests he was helping to coordinate.
Schrader, of Manhattan, had been using the name Shawn Carrie as his pseudonym on Twitter and while working for the Occupy movement, and the 2007 warrant was for another individual with that name. He said he showed the cops an ID with his real name when they collared him.
Schrader's lawyer Jeffrey Rothman noted that cops almost never seek out and arrest people on old public urination warrants, adding that the case "illustrates starkly the NYPD's brutal response to the Occupy Wall Street movement and the continuing malfeasance of its Intelligence Division in the suppression of protected First Amendment activity."
In an earlier arrest that started in Zuccotti Park on March 17, 2012, cops stomped and choked him, Schrader said in his March 2013 lawsuit.
He said an officer made his ear bleed, and growled, "Are you Occupy Wall Street people going to come back and demonstrate? Are you punks going to come back and keep showing up? Because every time you guys come back we're going to kick your asses."
( Read more...Collapse )
source: New York Daily News
Victim's blog post on settlement has more details on alleged police brutality
Tags: avoid the comments, lawsuits, new york, occupywallstreet, police brutality
Solicitor in Cambridge for deposit dispute with former landlord|
Can anyone recommend one? One of those free 1 hour consultations would be nice.
Also, if anyone’s got any experience in taking action to get your deposit back, I’d welcome the benefit of your experience. I’m not going to give details in a public forum, but you can get in touch privately (paul AT noctua.org.uk or Facebook PM me or something) if you want to get into specifics.
Originally posted at Name and Nature. You can comment there. There are currently comments.
Tags: blog, cambridge, law, legal, my life, solicitors
This would have improved the series|
So very much.
This entry was originally posted at http://jessie-c.dreamwidth.org/410539.html. You may comment here or there as you wish. LJ's plague of spammers has forced me to turn off anonymous commenting. If you wish to comment anonymously, please come over to the Dreamwidth URL above.
A man just so obnoxiously jumped the queue right ahead of me that I can't believe he's for real. He must be one of those people doing sociological research on the effects of queue jumpers.
(The effects were, of course, nothing overt at all from the rest of the queue, but I wonder if I'm the only person who sought sympathy from the internet!)
Harvard orders evacuations after unconfirmed reports of explosives|
December 16, 2013 -- Updated 1603 GMT (0003 HKT)
(CNN) -- Four buildings at Harvard University were evacuated Monday morning after the school received an unconfirmed report that bombs may have been placed there, the Boston-area school said on its website and Twitter.
No explosions were reported, and law enforcement personnel were checking the buildings. While the investigation wasn't complete, the report appears to be a hoax, two law enforcement sources told CNN.
( Read more...Collapse )
Harvard's final exams for the fall term began last week and are scheduled to go through Friday.
Harvard's emergency page
Harvard twitter feed
Tags: college/university, massachusetts, usa
Black rips into Toronto Star for 'attempted coup' against Mayor Rob Ford|
A libel notice against Rob Ford has prompted Conrad Black to come to the Toronto mayor's defence, accusing Canada's largest newspaper of being a "menace to democracy."
The former media mogul did an interview with Ford on Vision TV last Monday, which led to Star reporter Daniel Dale serving a legal notice to the mayor.
Dale and the Star contend that Ford's comments during the interview about an incident last year amounted to accusing him of being a pedophile.
Ford has since said he stands by his comments about a confrontation he had with Dale outside his home.
Dale has said the legal action is his own, but Black used a National Post column to accuse the Star of dragging what he calls its prolonged effort to crucify Ford into the courts.
Black writes that Ford's comments about Dale are a sideshow to what he calls the Star's campaign of "rabid hostility" against the mayor.
"Those who have problems with the mayor’s style (and there is plenty of room for such concerns) can wait for the 2014 election," writes Black in the column published Saturday.
"The voters control this city, not the Toronto Star. And the attempt to end-run the electoral system is dishonest and a menace to democracy."
Michael Cooke, the Toronto Star's Editor who Black referred to in his column as "my former protege," expressed surprise over Black's diatribe.
"My primary concern is the attack on our reporter, though it is increasingly odd that a man as brilliant as Conrad Black would plant his flag on Mount Ford and do battle from there," Cooke told The Canadian Press in an email.
Black also takes issue with the claim by Dale and the Star that Ford was insinuating pedophilia, saying that his take on Ford's comments was that the mayor was worried about the safety of his children until he saw that Dale was a journalist but there was no thought the reporter was a pedophile.
"The notion that the mayor had insinuated that Dale was a pervert was a confection uniquely of his colleagues at the Star, and he has his colleagues to thank for whatever stigmatization he feels he has suffered," said Black.
Dale and the Star have said the reporter was near Ford's home researching a story about an adjacent parcel of public land that the mayor wanted to purchase.
Ford confronted Dale and accused him of taking pictures of his home, something the Star reporter denied and police later confirmed had not happened.
Dale has said he was prepared to let Ford's comments on Black's Vision show Zoomer go, but the mayor later repeated them in an interview with a U.S. media outlet.
Someone started a campaign on the crowdfunding site indiegogo to raise money to cover Ford's legal costs. The campaign set a target of $50,000 but had only raised $931 as of Saturday evening.
Black says he doesn't minimize Ford's mistakes, but notes police have never charged him with a crime so there is no reason why the mayor should resign. He predicted that Ford will finish his term.
"The Star’s attempted coup is collapsing," writes Black, who is no stranger to controversy himself having served nearly five years in U.S. prison for fraud and obstruction of justice.
"In the hands of its present and recent leadership it has atrophied, and is now like a decrepit Jurassic monster, with failing sight and palsied limb that yet comes snorting out of the undergrowth occasionally in pursuit of some misconceived or conjured cause."
Tags: canada, excuze me wtf r u doin, journalism, rob ford (canada)
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