Welcome to DU! The truly grassroots left-of-center political community where regular people, not algorithms, drive the discussions and set the standards. Join the community: Create a free account Support DU (and get rid of ads!): Become a Star Member Latest Breaking News Editorials & Other Articles General Discussion The DU Lounge All Forums Issue Forums Culture Forums Alliance Forums Region Forums Support Forums Help & Search


Cerridwen's Journal
Cerridwen's Journal
September 28, 2013

"The ironic impact of activists"

"The ironic impact of activists: Negative stereotypes reduce social change influence"


Despite recognizing the need for social change in areas such as social equality and environmental protection, individuals often avoid supporting such change. Researchers have previously attempted to understand this resistance to social change by examining individuals' perceptions of social issues and social change. We instead examined the possibility that individuals resist social change because they have negative stereotypes of activists, the agents of social change. Participants had negative stereotypes of activists (feminists and environmentalists), regardless of the domain of activism, viewing them as eccentric and militant. Furthermore, these stereotypes reduced participants' willingness to affiliate with ‘typical’ activists and, ultimately, to adopt the behaviours that these activists promoted. These results indicate that stereotypes and person perception processes more generally play a key role in creating resistance to social change. Copyright © 2013 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Boring, isn't it? Much more interesting and meme catapulting to say:

[font size=5]Study: Everyone hates environmentalists and feminists[/font]
[font size = 1]New research suggests people tend to hold negative views of political and social activists [/font]


If you're going to criticize the media, maybe it's time to question everything reported, how it's reported, and what they choose to report.

Yeah, it's just the internet. I want better than that.

September 28, 2013

Media spin: a tale of two titles

The same article. As far as I can tell, word for word. Each article appears in a different venue with a different title.


The title used in the original article at the Guardian: http://www.theguardian.com/media/media-blog/2013/sep/27/seymour-hersh-obama-nsa-american-media

[font size="4"]Seymour Hersh on Obama, NSA and the 'pathetic' American media[/font]
[font size="2"]Pulitzer Prize winner explains how to fix journalism, saying press should 'fire 90% of editors and promote ones you can't control'[/font]


The title used for the reposted article at Alternet: http://www.alternet.org/media/seymour-hersh-story-about-killing-osama-bin-laden-one-big-lie?akid=10983.38044.3iPMRk&rd=1&src=newsletter902420&t=3&paging=off¤t_page=1

[font size="3"]Seymour Hersh: Story About Killing Osama Bin Laden is One Big Lie[/font]
[font size="1"]Plus, 90% of lamestream editors should be fired.[/font]

The font sizes are approximated to show the emphasis in the "originals."

Imagine how a discussion might go based on each of the titles. The first might be a discussion about the media and how it molds impressions. The second might be a discussion about bin laden; or President Obama; or the lies of the current administration.

Same article. Different titles. Different emphasis. Different focus on information. Cherry picking to spin.

This is how media spins the message and emphasizes details.

I wonder who the target audience is at the Guardian and who the target audience is at Alternet.

September 25, 2013

Correction of anti-union talking points currently being catapulted by wsj and others. (corrected)

There's a recent group of talking points about "The Unions(tm)" being against the ACA. The wsj seems to be front and center in this round of anti-everything human propaganda-fest.

Here's the response by one of the unions being misquoted for you to have handy when you see the steam start to arise from the pile of shit:

From http://www.teamster.org/content/hoffa-calls-cruz-right-wing-extremists-stop-aca-misrepresentations

[div class="excerpt"Hoffa Calls On Cruz, Right-Wing Extremists To Stop ACA Misrepresentations
September 25, 2013
Official Statement Of James P. Hoffa, Teamsters General President
Press Contact
Galen Munroe

(Washington, D.C.) – The following is an official statement by Teamsters General President James P. Hoffa:

“In July, I co-wrote a letter to Sen. Harry Reid and Rep. Nancy Pelosi expressing our concerns about specific provisions of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and the potential unintended consequences of those provisions. The concerns outlined in that letter have been taken out of context by anti-worker legislators and political organizations in an attempt to bolster their own arguments against the ACA. They are further trying to show that there is some broad movement to derail the ACA from all sides of the political spectrum.

“Though we may have concerns with specific provisions of the ACA, we share the president’s goal of ensuring that every American has affordable access to top-quality health care. It is on this main point that we disagree wholeheartedly with the efforts of extreme right-wing Republicans to gut the ACA. Any suggestion otherwise is simply political posturing.

“I call on Sen. Ted Cruz, Sen. David Vitter and others to cease and desist from misusing our constructive comments in their destructive campaign to hobble the president and the nation.

“Working Americans are fed up with the continued cycle of holding the government and the economy hostage to achieve some empty political victory. Working families are the only people hurt by Republican maneuverings to shut down the government and play Russian roulette with the debt ceiling.”

September 1, 2013

Washington's farewell address - 1796 - "overgrown military establishments"

link: http://avalon.law.yale.edu/18th_century/washing.asp

For this you have every inducement of sympathy and interest. Citizens, by birth or choice, of a common country, that country has a right to concentrate your affections. The name of American, which belongs to you in your national capacity, must always exalt the just pride of patriotism more than any appellation derived from local discriminations. With slight shades of difference, you have the same religion, manners, habits, and political principles. You have in a common cause fought and triumphed together; the independence and liberty you possess are the work of joint counsels, and joint efforts of common dangers, sufferings, and successes.

But these considerations, however powerfully they address themselves to your sensibility, are greatly outweighed by those which apply more immediately to your interest. Here every portion of our country finds the most commanding motives for carefully guarding and preserving the union of the whole.

The North, in an unrestrained intercourse with the South, protected by the equal laws of a common government, finds in the productions of the latter great additional resources of maritime and commercial enterprise and precious materials of manufacturing industry. The South, in the same intercourse, benefiting by the agency of the North, sees its agriculture grow and its commerce expand. Turning partly into its own channels the seamen of the North, it finds its particular navigation invigorated; and, while it contributes, in different ways, to nourish and increase the general mass of the national navigation, it looks forward to the protection of a maritime strength, to which itself is unequally adapted. The East, in a like intercourse with the West, already finds, and in the progressive improvement of interior communications by land and water, will more and more find a valuable vent for the commodities which it brings from abroad, or manufactures at home. The West derives from the East supplies requisite to its growth and comfort, and, what is perhaps of still greater consequence, it must of necessity owe the secure enjoyment of indispensable outlets for its own productions to the weight, influence, and the future maritime strength of the Atlantic side of the Union, directed by an indissoluble community of interest as one nation. Any other tenure by which the West can hold this essential advantage, whether derived from its own separate strength, or from an apostate and unnatural connection with any foreign power, must be intrinsically precarious.

While, then, every part of our country thus feels an immediate and particular interest in union, all the parts combined cannot fail to find in the united mass of means and efforts greater strength, greater resource, proportionably greater security from external danger, a less frequent interruption of their peace by foreign nations; and, what is of inestimable value, they must derive from union an exemption from those broils and wars between themselves, which so frequently afflict neighboring countries not tied together by the same governments, which their own rival ships alone would be sufficient to produce, but which opposite foreign alliances, attachments, and intrigues would stimulate and embitter. Hence, likewise, they will avoid the necessity of those overgrown military establishments which, under any form of government, are inauspicious to liberty, and which are to be regarded as particularly hostile to republican liberty. In this sense it is that your union ought to be considered as a main prop of your liberty, and that the love of the one ought to endear to you the preservation of the other.

So much more at the link.

Why isn't this taught in school instead of the mythology of George Washington?

August 30, 2013

"Death with dignity." "Cruel and unusual punishment."

Values, concepts, tenets that permeate our culture.

"It was a good death." "It was senseless death." "He died for a good cause." "Today is a good day to die."

There was a national debate about "death with dignity" in this country. It had to do with a persons right to determine the time, place, and method of their death. It informed the way we use the brutality of the death penalty. That debate brought about issues such as life versus quality of life and death versus the quality or cruelty of death.

Death began to be seen as part of the human experience. Many of us understood that no one should be forced to endure a long, painful, much less horrific death. Some of us also began to see that forced life, keeping one hooked to machines, or on painkillers that just touch the surface of excruciating pain, was perhaps not really life; that life might have more to it than just existing.

All because we began to talk about death. About assisted suicide.

Anyone who has experienced a loved ones fight with a debilitating disease leading to their death, knows what life versus quality of life means. Anyone who has experienced a loved ones fight with an excruciating and painful death, understands what "good death" means.

"May she pass peacefully." "May he cross over easily."

We even joke about it: “When I die, I want to die like my grandfather who died peacefully in his sleep. Not screaming like all the passengers in his car.” attributed to Will Rogers

The last meal for a prisoner about to executed, a last cigarette while the firing squad waits, the gathering of family and friends to say good bye to a loved one and to "send them off" with dignity, love, and grace. All part of our shared experience, our shared humanity.

Now I see, for the sake of justifying a political stance, for the sake of winning an argument, to create a diversion, for the sake of saying "I'm right; you're wrong" people saying, "meh, dead is dead."

Not only are you losing your argument, slivers of your humanity are falling away whether you see it or not. It may be that "dead is dead," but how one arrives at dead is of import.

The quality of ones life and of ones death, matters.

July 16, 2013

The 7 nominations in the Senate today.


The Senate stands in recess until 10:00am on Tuesday, July 16, 2013.
Senator-elect Markey will be sworn into office at 10:00am on Tuesday.

As a reminder to all Senators, during Thursday’s session of the Senate, cloture was filed on the following items in the following order:

Executive Calendar #51, the nomination of Richard Cordray, of OH, to be Director, Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection;

Executive Calendar #100, the nomination of Richard F. Griffin, Jr, of DC, to be a Member of the National Labor Relations Board;

Executive Calendar #101, the nomination of Sharon Block, of DC, to be a Member of the National Labor Relations Board;

Executive Calendar #104, the nomination of Mark Gaston Pearce, of NY, to be a Member of the National Labor Relations Board;

Executive Calendar #178, the nomination of Fred P. Hochberg, of NY, to be President of the Export-Import Bank of the United States;

Executive Calendar #99, the nomination of Thomas Edward Perez, of MD, to be Secretary of Labor; and

Executive Calendar #98, the nomination of Regina McCarthy, of MA, to be Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency.

We anticipate the first cloture vote to begin at 11:00am. (Note: 71-29, to proceed with the nomination of Richard Cordray.) If cloture is invoked on any of the nominations, there would be up to 8 hours for debate prior to a vote on confirmation of the nomination, except for the Perez nomination, which would have up to 30 hours of post-cloture debate. If cloture is not invoked on a nomination, the Senate would proceed to vote on cloture on the next nomination.


I thought "Obama will toss out two other NLRB nominees, Richard Griffin and Sharon Block, and replace them with two new people." (according to various "reporting" agencies)


Will they just bring the names to a vote and vote them down since they're on the schedule?

July 6, 2013

Idiocy on the internet, ash on my car, and the wildfire down the road. (update 6: 14,108 acres)

First, the wildfire isn't just down the road, it's about 20-25 miles away as the crow flies or about 40 miles by road.

For those who haven't yet heard, we're having quite the summer here in southern Nevada.

The wildfire to which I refer is labelled the Carpenter 1 fire and is now at almost 11,000 acres and 0% contained. 10,935 acres to be "exact." That's up from the 9,031 acres that was reported yesterday and 2,000 acres reported just a few days ago. It's been growing by leaps and bounds. Here's the INCIWeb link: http://www.inciweb.org/unit/43/

About 520 people and their pets have been evacuated from two communities; one on the "Vegas side" of the mountain and the other on the "Pahrump side" of the mountain.

As of these reports, no property or human lives lost. I can't speak to the wild life on the mountain.

A link to a .pdf that shows the general area of the Spring Mountains/Mt. Charleston area on page 2: http://www.blm.gov/pgdata/etc/medialib/blm/nv/field_offices/las_vegas_field_office/wilderness/wilderness_fact_sheet.Par.25694.File.dat/Mt.%20Charleston%20Wilderness%20Fact%20Sheet%20Web%20Opt.pdf

Various government agencies, local and community organizations and individuals are helping with pets and horse boarding for the evacuees.

INCIWeb reports "12 crews, 26 engines and five watertenders" (that was yesterday; may be more or different config. today). The local r/w rag, aka the rj, reports (paraphrased so DU doesn't get sued) 12 "Hot Shot" crews. One of their headline writers even blamed the fire for causing a "red flag" weather warning. First, Hot Shot crews are a very specific type of wildland-fire fire fighter and 2, I'm pretty sure the "red flag" weather came about because of our excessive and dry heat which caused dry thunderstorms.

Dry thunderstorms: http://www.accuweather.com/en/weather-news/elevated-wildfire-risk-continu/14844983

One of the main causes of wildfires across the West during these conditions are dry thunderstorms. During these storms, the humidity near the ground is so low that all of the rain from the storm evaporates before it reaches the ground.

<snip there's an informative graphic here>

Although the rain evaporates as it falls, lightning from these storms can still strike the ground and potentially spark wildfires.

<snip to watch paragraph count>

These storms can also have negative impacts on wildfires already burning. Winds produced by the storms allow fires to grow rapidly and switch directions abruptly, making the battle against the blaze even more difficult for firefighters.

Link to a pretty good map showing the size of the fire and it's location relative to Vegas and Pahrump: http://www3.8newsnow.com/maps/canyonfire/

Back to INCIWeb: (snippets)

Current Situation

Total Personnel 422
Size 10,935 acres

Fuels Involved Pinyon Juniper
Fire Behavior Extreme long duration crown runs, spotting and rapid rate of spread.

Significant Events

Fire continues to exhibit extreme behavior. Transfer of command from a type III organization to Great Basin IMT 7 (Marty Adell).

Growth Potential High
Terrain Difficulty Extreme

Fire Behavior Forecast: Extreme fire behavior is likely. Torching of trees or long range fire spotting, with fire rates of spread predicted in sage brush of 5 mph are predicted.

Weather: Partly cloudy in the afternoon with isolated thunderstorms. Wind gusts to 40 mph possible. Temperatures cooler, in the 70s to 80s. Relative Humidity is 15-20%.

(I fixed some spelling)

Idiocy on the internet: (I've been reading a lot of articles and these are some of the comments)

The fire was started/not contained because...government conspiracy!
The fire was caused by metals in the ground in Arizona.
Question as to why the Forest Service left; was it because of sequestration? (Note: it was because they were replaced by the next shift and the changing Incident Management Team)
People were not "asked" to leave, his friend was "ordered" to leave or be arrested. (I don't have TV or cable yet I've seen the reports since the first day of the fire, July 1st.)
The federal government was taking advantage of this disaster to "order" people around and remind them who's in charge.
One woman interviewed, one of the last off the Mt. Charleston side, never saw firefighters or planes dropping water/retardant. (I guess her TV/internet were/are broken; I've been watching reports of both for days. Hmmm, maybe it's a moon landing scenario?)
The government's been warning this kind of thing could happen; does that mean they caused it? (this idiot has never heard of fire science or forest science or, well, science, I guess.)

There are a lot more comments like that at the various articles. Very sad and horrifically terrifying.

Finally, there was ash on my car, and still falling slightly, when I left for work yesterday morning about 5:30am local time. Others around the northern part of the valley "nearest" the fire reported the same. Very weird feeling.

I'm watching this closely and reading a lot, as you can tell.

East of the Mississippi y'all got your winter.

Out west, we have drought and a fire season that is now 2 months longer than historically recorded. Oh yeah, and excessive heat warnings and brown/black-outs.

We call it summer, which is also longer and hotter, earlier than in the past.


INCIWeb updated 5 minutes ago: (just snippet of changed piece)

422+fire personnel engaged on the fire.

There are 12 crews on scene, 6 of which are Type 1 Hotshot crews, the most highly trained. The Hotshot crews we have are the same type as the crew recently lost in Arizona.

As of the morning of July 6, there are the following air assets on the fire:

· 5 Type 1 (heavy) helicopters
· 4 heavy air tankers
· 1 VLAT (Very Large Air Tanker. Based on a DC-10). It can drop 11,700 gallons per load.

There are 6 water tenders and 25 engines on scene, with 25 engines on order. The area is very rugged and inaccessible to engines and other motorized vehicles.


Additional from INCI about 2 minutes ago:

There are 6 water tenders and 25 engines on scene, with 25 engines on order. The area is very rugged and inaccessible to engines and other motorized vehicles.

June 30, 2013

2nd degree burns: But it's a dry heat.

Please be careful if you come into the southwest during this latest heat-wave.

We're being warned of 2nd-degree burns should we go barefoot(?!) on the asphalt or concrete. Walking your dog on asphalt or concrete will possibly burn their pads. If you're walking with your child and the child falls...yeah, watch for the burns. It's quite ugly.

If you leave a child or pet in a vehicle, well, it's an ugly way to die.

I'll provide a link though no text from the article documenting those who have had to have skin grafts due to the heat absorbed by asphalt and/or concrete during our dry-heat 117 degree days. The reason there's no text is because this particular publication has gone after DU in its fervor to make profit from "intellectual property." I believe the link alone might be okay. http://www.reviewjournal.com/life/health/parched-throats-sizzling-asphalt-among-many-dangers-excessive-heat

It may feel comfortable, until the headaches start. The problem with the dry heat is you don't think you're in trouble because there is no sweat because it evaporates. It's very dangerous; and very quick. You'll dehydrate before you're aware of it and by then, it can be too late.

We hit 117 today and lost power for an hour; our grid can't support the load of unchecked, profit-driving building and expansion in the damned desert. We were lucky. Older parts of town?

Stay safe, hydrated, and cool out there.

Tomorrow, well, it's another day.

June 23, 2013

"Schools should be palaces."

From "The West Wing"

The only thing I might add is that children would be taught as individuals; to their skill level regardless of their chronological age, to their interests, and to their learning style while encouraging a life-long love of learning and critical thinking. Languages, art, math, science, literature, history, logic, music, philosophy, and on and on.

Mallory, education is the silver bullet. Education is everything. We don't need little changes, we need gigantic, monumental changes. Schools should be palaces. The competition for the best teachers should be fierce. They should be making six-figure salaries. Schools should be incredibly expensive for government and absolutely free of charge to its citizens, just like national defense. That's my position. I just haven't figured out how to do it yet.

The video:

June 12, 2013

"making him actually love his slavery"

Apropos of nothing of today's popular culture and/or media manufactured scandal.

"...the dictatorship of the future will be very unlike the dictatorships which we've been familiar with in the immediate past.

...take another book...George Orwell's "1984"...written at the height the Stalinist regime, and just after the Hitler regime, and there he foresaw a dictatorship using entirely the methods of terror, the methods of physical violence...I think what's going to happen in the future is that the dictators will find, as the old saying goes, you can do everything with bayonets except sit on them.

...{the new dictators will find} if you want to preserve your power indefinitely, you have to get the consent of the ruled, and this they will do partly by drugs.., partly by these new techniques of propaganda. They will do it by bypassing the rational part of man and appealing to his subconscious and his deeper emotions and physiology even...making him actually love his slavery.

...this is the danger that actually people may be in some ways be happy under the new regime. But they will be happy in situations in which they oughtn't to be happy..."

Aldous Huxley, The Mike Wallace Interview, 5/18/1958 link:http://www.hrc.utexas.edu/multimedia/video/2008/wallace/huxley_aldous.html

The interview includes a discussion about the new medium - television, propaganda, Madison Avenue, political elections and marketing candidates, the "pharmacological revolution", and much more.

Previously posted: Sat Jun-14-08 11:03 PM

Profile Information

Gender: Female
Hometown: Las Vegas, Nevada
Home country: United Corporate States of the US
Current location: Las Vegas, Nevada
Member since: Thu Jun 24, 2004, 11:32 AM
Number of posts: 13,260

About Cerridwen

Hairy, scary, pro-abortion, 'rad fem', doing my best to piss off the "religious" right and MRAs everywhere.
Latest Discussions»Cerridwen's Journal