This Week in Nazi-Punching

Sep. 20th, 2017 04:15 pm
jimhines: (Snoopy Writing)
[personal profile] jimhines

A video of a Nazi in Seattle getting punched and knocked out has been making the rounds. Responses range from satisfaction and celebration to the predictable cries of “So much for the tolerant left” and the related “Violence makes us as bad as them and plays right into their hands.”

A few things to consider…

1. According to one witness, the punch happened after the Nazi called a man an “ape” and threw a banana at him. With the disclaimer that I’m not a lawyer, that sounds like assault to me. I’m guessing Assault in the Fourth Degree. In other words, the punching was a response to an assault by the Nazi.

The witness who talks about the banana-throwing also says he was high on THC. I haven’t seen anyone disputing his account, but I haven’t seen corroboration, either.

2.Remember when George Zimmerman murdered Trayvon Martin, and people like Geraldo Rivera said it was because Martin was wearing a hoodie, and that made Martin a potentially dangerous “suspicious character”? Utter bullshit, I know. But if our legal system let Zimmerman plead self-defense, saying he was afraid because Martin was wearing a hoodie, doesn’t that same argument apply against someone wearing a fucking swastika?

We’re talking about a symbol that announces, “I support genocide of those who aren’t white, aren’t straight, aren’t able-bodied…”

3. Buzzfeed presents this as anti-fascists tracking a Neo-Nazi to beat him up. While antifa Twitter appears to have been talking about this guy, there’s no evidence that the punch was thrown by someone who’s part of that movement. And even if he was, the guy didn’t throw a punch until after the Nazi committed assault (see point #1).

Those Tweets quoted on Buzzfeed also suggest the Nazi was armed, which could add to the self-defense argument in point #2.

Is Nazi-punching right? Is it legal? As any role-player will tell you, there’s a difference between whether something is lawful and whether it’s good.

The “victim” has every right to press charges. But for some reason, he didn’t want to talk to police about the incident.

Was punching this guy a good thing? I mean, there’s a difference between comic books and real life. The Nazi was standing in front of some sort of tile wall. He could have struck his head on the corner after being punched, or when he fell to the ground. In other words, there’s a chance–albeit probably a slim one–that this could have killed him.

My country and culture glorify violence. I’d much rather avoid violence when possible. I think most rational people would. But there are times it’s necessary to fight, to choose to defend yourself and others. I think it’s important to understand the potential consequences of that choice.

Multiple accounts agree this man was harassing people on the bus, and later on the street. He was a self-proclaimed Nazi. Police say they received calls that he was instigating fights, and it sounds like he escalated from verbal harassment to physical assault … at which point another man put him down, halting any further escalation.

I don’t know exactly what I would have done in that situation, but I see nothing to make me condemn or second-guess this man’s choice in the face of a dangerous Nazi.

Mirrored from Jim C. Hines.

Hands across the ocean

Sep. 20th, 2017 02:00 pm
rydra_wong: The display board of a train reads "this train is fucked". (this train is fucked)
[personal profile] rydra_wong
Thanks to [personal profile] cesy for the heads-up -- Hope not Hate have launched a US site:

Hope Not Hate (Twitter: [twitter.com profile] hopenothate_USA)

By way of making a dramatic entry, this seems to have been timed to co-ordinate with the announcement of their epic undercover project: Patrik Hermansson, an extremely brave young Swedish grad student, infiltrated the alt-right and lived undercover in the movement in London and the US for nearly a year, wired for sound and carrying hidden cameras. This ultimately included being at Charlottesville and witnessing the car attack that killed Heather Heyer.

The documentary is coming soon, and the comprehensive report on the international alt-right (for which the infiltration was part of the research) is here:

The International Alternative Right

News reports:

New York Times: Undercover With the Alt-Right

Raw Story: ‘It’s gonna end with concentration camps’: Alt-right executive boasts of a future Europe with Hitler on their money

As you will have noticed, I love HnH. They have a long history working against fascist and far right groups in the UK, through research, infiltration, legal action, anti-racist/xenophobic education and campaigning, and their work seems to have naturally become international as the "alt-right" has (e.g. with the "Defend Europe" boat). I think their expertise (and the willingness of their reporters to put their necks on the line, holy fuck) will be a formidable addition to the US scene.

Also they will allow you to give them money to help sue Nigel Farage, and honestly I would love them for that alone. PLEASE TAKE MY MONEY, PLEASE.
rydra_wong: Lee Miller photo showing two women wearing metal fire masks in England during WWII. (Default)
[personal profile] rydra_wong
The Guardian: Medieval porpoise 'grave' on Channel island puzzles archaeologists

I love everything about this story:

Archaeologists digging at an island religious retreat have unearthed the remains of a porpoise that, mystifyingly, appears to have been carefully buried in its own medieval grave.

MAYBE THE PORPOISE WAS A MONK, HAVE YOU THOUGHT ABOUT THAT.

... and now I eagerly await the medieval monk were-porpoise shifter romance.

For a different kind of wonderful:

The Fader: This Artist Is Filling London With Murals Of Extraordinary Black Women

The art is gorgeous, but what I really love is that he's portraying his female friends, people who aren't famous but are ordinary/extraordinary people - a youth worker, a psychotherapist, and so on. And I love the shots of the murals with the real women posed next to them.

I'm meeeelting

Sep. 19th, 2017 03:13 pm
feng_shui_house: me at my computer (Default)
[personal profile] feng_shui_house
My thermometer reads 107.2F 41.8C

I just... can't... I went out for a few minutes to do more picking up (still have bits of plastic from a neighbor's shredded roof tarp, & have begun taking out the plastic privacy strips woven into the sagging chain link fence I still haven't tried to get removed). And it's just... I watered a few plants and refilled the bowls I leave out for birds/stray cats & gave up.

Still writing on my Team Iron Man fic. Wish I was also in drawing mode for Spoonflower, but I'll take what I can get. Writing is better than not being creative, even tho it earns no $$-- but it is good for my ego. :^)

Current Statistics:
Published:2017-08-26 Updated:2017-09-19 Words:37491 Chapters:51/?Comments:1133 Kudos:704 Bookmarks:131 Hits:15674

Graham-Cassidy

Sep. 19th, 2017 10:45 am
rydra_wong: The display board of a train reads "this train is fucked". (this train is fucked)
[personal profile] rydra_wong
Via [tumblr.com profile] vassraptor and [tumblr.com profile] realsocialskills:

The Autistic Self Advocacy Network: ACA repeal is back – and so are we

Explanation, script and guide to contacting your representatives.

Tree Fellas

Sep. 17th, 2017 08:04 am
feng_shui_house: me at my computer (Default)
[personal profile] feng_shui_house
So far, looks good. Father & Son guys came by at 8am & gave me a $300 estimate to do the job. They're going off to give an estimate somewhere else & say they'll be back in 2 hours to cut my tree.

Yay. I do NOT EVEN CARE if the tree dies as a result, I want it lowered down far enough I'll be able to trim it myself next year. (It probably won't die. Hurricane Andrew in 1992 knocked it down, we cut it to a STUMP and it came back.)

YAY. They came back and did it. (It's now 9:30) They did a nice clean job & even raked up leaves afterward. *GLEE* I added $40 for a tip, because 2 guys did 95% of the work & I was going to give them $20 each, but then 3 more showed up to finish the last 5 minutes of picking up the wood, so I just gave the $340 to Son & he can decide whether /how to divvy.
sallymn: (books 12)
[personal profile] sallymn

(click to enlarge)

The Knuckleduster Cowtown Creator by Forrest Harris (1999)

I'll give you three guesses which fandom I had started dabbling in when I saw this in a post by an online acquaintance and had to track down (luckily second-hand) for myself :)

Obviously, it was written for RPG enthusiasts to help them create their Old West towns: less for reading, more for reference. All manner of good stuff like the typical businesses in town, floor plans for buildings, goods available in all kinds of stores and suggested prices, typical character types and the jobs they might do, medical skills (and what doctors couldn't do), livery prices, stagecoaches and robberies, morse code and restaurant meals, fancy house euphemisms and gambling games, and of course lists of names (people, horse, stores, towns and so on)... not what an expert on the period might want but for someone who wanted to get their game right, it's wonderful.

And for a humble little fanfic writer who has a complete fascination for domestic detail and wants to get her stories to at least sound right... it's been a treasure :) to the point where I scanned what I found the most valuable bits of the town/character stuff and keep the scans on my hard drive so I can take the information with me wherever I might be scribbling...


(no subject)

Sep. 16th, 2017 09:08 pm
skygiants: Beatrice from Much Ado putting up her hand to stop Benedick talking (no more than reason)
[personal profile] skygiants
If you are currently in Boston, you have one week left to go see Or at the Chelsea Theater! As [personal profile] aamcnamara put it on Twitter, "it is the Restoration queer bedroom farce spy writing-themed play of your dreams."

Or features three cast members, playing, respectively:
- former spy and ambitious playwright Aphra Behn
- Charles II of England and also Aphra Behn's ex-lover double agent William Scot
- Nell Gwyn, and also Aphra Behn's elderly and extremely cranky maid, and also in one memorably stamina-requiring and scene-stealing monologue Lady Mary Davenant, manager of the Duke's Company of theatrical players

Most of the play takes place in Aphra Behn's apartment, with cast members popping in and out of side rooms as Aphra Behn vainly attempts to keep all her love interests separate AND ALSO thwart a hypothetical plot on the king's life AND ALSO and most importantly finish writing the final act of her career-launching play by a deadline of 9 AM the next morning! Which nobody will let her do! Because they keep wanting to make out with her and/or tell her about plots on the king's life! It's all very frustrating!

The dialogue is delightful, the actors do a fantastic job rattling out natural-sounding rapid-fire iambic pentameter, I laughed aloud at the final plot twist, and the ending contains a solid dose of much-appreciated optimism; it's an extremely enjoyable experience and one I would strongly recommend.

Tree-mendous...

Sep. 16th, 2017 07:31 pm
feng_shui_house: me at my computer (Default)
[personal profile] feng_shui_house
Ok, my body is calling it quits, in addition to the bum left shoulder, and trick left knee, I now have a dodgy right ankle. I do not KNOW WHY, it's not as if I did any injury... probably I'm just the one-hoss shay that fell apart all at once. :^)

My hands and arms and back are legitimately sore from work, but the other bits just decided to give up.

I kept trying though, and I ALMOST had one of the higher branches. Cut through all but a tiny fraction and it swung down and STAYED, at an angle and height where I can't cut it, adding to the three branches that broke during the storm in much the same way.

So I tried once more to find a tree trimmer, this time I asked my boyfriend Google 'tree trimmer' and it asked tree trimmer near me? And I was all for that.

Found 2 close to me, one was shut for the day, the other said 24 hours, which I figured meant I could at least leave a message. 'Father and Son Tree Service'. Father doesn't speak much English, but was polite & told me to call back in a few minutes to speak to his son.

Spoke to the son about half an hour ago, & he said he'd come by in an hour or two to give an estimate.

*FINGERS CROSSED* I think it may be too dark soon, but if he doesn't show up I'll try him again in the morning.

EDIT: 2 hours later he called to ask if he could come by in the morning. Glad I thought to ask WHEN because he said 7:30-8am? There's been times that's when I went to bed... not gonna argue, will just have to get to sleep EEEARLY.

A Brief Guide to Hutch's Guitars

Sep. 16th, 2017 08:53 pm
mortmere: (Default)
[personal profile] mortmere
 A little look at the guitars Hutch plays – that is, David's guitars. I'm no guitar aficionado, just curious about all things Hutch and learning stuff as I do my searches, so if there are mistakes (or if I've totally forgotten some guitar scene) let me know! 

***** 

Hutch's first musical moment comes in the tag of ”Death Notice” when he sings ”Black Bean Soup” with Starsky. He's playing the type of guitar you most often see David with in pics from this era: a roundbacked Ovation. This one is acoustic Folklore model 1114-4 (see Ovation's 1972 catalog: http://www.ovationtribute.com/Catalogues/Ovation%201972%20Catalog/Ovation%201972%20Catalog.html).
rydra_wong: Fragment of a Tube map, with stations renamed Piero della Francesca, Harpo, Socrates and Seneca. (walking -- the great bear)
[personal profile] rydra_wong
is now OH JESUS FUCK BUTTERCUP'S GOING TO SAY SOMETHING ISN'T HE.

Today:

Trump claimed on Twitter that the terrorist attack involved “sick and demented people who were in the sights of Scotland Yard”, despite no such information having been released publicly by police. He also blamed it on “loser terrorists”, promoted his travel ban and advocated a “proactive and nasty” policy against Islamic State.

Note: since no information's been released publicly about whether the police even have suspects, let alone ones known to Scotland Yard, Buttercup is either a) violating the conventions on intelligence sharing (again), or b) completely making shit up.

Also note: almost all our terrorists recently have been home-grown, so a travel ban would do exactly fuck-all.

Also pre-emptively and doubtless ineffectively: DON'T EVEN THINK OF COMING AT OUR MAYOR YOU FUCKER.
capriuni: A black field crossed by five parallel lighting bolts in blue, gold, green, red, and purple (Default)
[personal profile] capriuni
This is a "chat" I posted to my Tumblr, today. And I'm posting it now, in response to This story segment from [personal profile] dialecticdreamer, and the ensuing discussion.




Disabled Person: I need a wheelchair.

Wheelchair Manufacturer: We won't sell you one unless Medicare will pay for it*

Disabled Person: I need a wheelchair.

Medicare: Can you walk 20 feet?

Disabled Person: It's 40 feet from my front door to my bedroom...

Medicare: Can you walk 20 feet?

Disabled Person: I can, but it's excruciatingly painful, my balance is terrible, and I risk falling at every step.

Medicare: Then No.

Disabled Person: Why not?

Read more... )



*Footnote: Even if you are wealthy enough to purchase a wheelchair out-of-pocket, many suppliers still require proof of insurance. And even private insurers copy Medicare's policies when it comes medical equipment and mobility aids.

Ow, but *sigh*

Sep. 15th, 2017 08:58 am
feng_shui_house: me at my computer (Default)
[personal profile] feng_shui_house
My left shoulder hasn't been happy with me for quite a while, and it really doesn't appreciate tree trimming. I finally decided to try calling a tree trimming service, hoping the mad rush would have died down by now.

Nope. Too busy. I tried another old card & he's out of the business. I have two more business cards but they're even older and entirely written in Spanish. I do not have the energy to deal with the inevitable miscommunications there.

So... back to doing what I can, only slower, make the right arm do more of the work. If it gets too bad I'll just give up and try again in a few weeks. I've removed a lot of the broken stuff, but it's got to the bigger, higher branches now & that's reallllllly slow.

CURRENTLY 99.7 F --- 37.7 C

yEah, break time. WHEW.
Heat continues, Tree cutting continues )

Halfassed Hiveswap Act 1 Walkthrough

Sep. 15th, 2017 03:14 pm
alias_sqbr: WV stands proudly as mayor (homestuck)
[personal profile] alias_sqbr
Hiveswap Act 1 is the long awaited Homestuck point and click adventure game! It's a lot of fun and not TOO hard but I still got stuck sometimes. Also quite short! Here's a full playthrough video I used when I got stuck.

Note for anyone with bad reflexes: the vast majority of it isn't time based but one section is and I found it mildly challenging as someone with very poor hand eye coordination. Also there's some references to abusive behaviour on par with stuff in Homestuck.

Below the cut is a half remembered text walkthrough. It's just the relevant instructions, but still pretty spoilery.
Read more... )

(no subject)

Sep. 14th, 2017 06:16 pm
skygiants: Hikaru from Ouran walking straight into Tamaki's hand (talk to the hand)
[personal profile] skygiants
At first I expected to write a rather scathing post about Rachel Kadish's The Weight of Ink, and then I got like 2/3 of the way through and realized that there were in fact some things I really liked about the book to counteract the things that made me stare into the camera like I was on the office, and THEN I got to the end and -

-- ok let me backtrack. The Weight of Ink is a serious literary novel about a pair of academics (the favorite protagonists of serious literary novels) who have discovered a treasure trove of 17th-century documents in a staircase written by Ester Velasquez, a Portuguese Jewish woman who Confounded All Tradition by acting as scribe for a London rabbi. The book proceeds to interweave Ester's story and POV with that of the academics as they discover various bits of evidence pointing to the things that Rachel Kadish will then later explain to us in Ester's narrative sections.

Ester's story is .... it's mostly good? I think I have come around to largely thinking it's good. It starts to pick up around the middle of the book, when Ester starts writing letters to various famous philosophers under fake male names so that she can Engage in the Discourse.

[ACADEMIC A: [Ester's fake name] did not get much attention during his career or make any important allies -
ACADEMIC B: Oh, why is that?
ACADEMIC A: Well, basically, he was very rude to everyone he wrote to.

I will admit I was charmed.]

Ester's most important relationships are with the rabbi -- a good and wise man who respects her intellect and cannot support the ways in which she chooses to use it -- and with Rivka, the rabbi's housekeeper, a Polish Jew who acts as Ester's foil in a number of significant ways, not all of them obvious or expected. Both of these dynamics have an interesting and complicated tension to them that goes well beyond the standard 'I, A Misunderstood Woman Ahead Of My Time.'

Also there is another young upper-class Jewish woman who is rebellious in wildly different ways than Ester is; a pair of brothers who are both interested in marrying Ester for profoundly different reasons, neither of which is true love; and, for a brief period of time, a love interest. The love interest is hilariously lacking in personality and equally hilariously irrelevant to Ester's life on the whole, and mostly exists to trigger a series of philosophical musings related to desire about which Ester can fight with Spinoza. I guess The Distant Shadow Of Spinoza is also one of Ester's most significant relationships.

Anyway, I appreciate the weighting of these relationships, and the way in which the narrative emphasis shifted from what I expected, and especially all the relationships that were not grounded in romance, but in other forms of love and duty and resentment and complicated emotional bonds.

And ... then there's our modern academics.

Helen Watt is a stiff-necked elderly British specialist in Jewish history, who is on the verge of retirement due to Parkinson's disease. Helen has a Tragic Backstory: in her youth, she spent a month as a volunteer in Israel in the 1950s and had a summer fling. Sorry, let me rephrase: she met an Israeli soldier who was the love! of her life!! (For a month.)

The pivotal scene in their romance occurs when Helen shows up for one of their few actual shared off days to have a date, and he hands her a copy of The History of the Jewish People and then LEAVES and REFUSES TO COME BACK until she's READ IT COVER TO COVER. This is the only way she can understand our endless, endless oppression!

(Meanwhile, he lurks outside, and periodically brings her snacks. THIS SCENE IS SOMEHOW NOT MEANT TO BE COMIC.)

Alas, Young Helen in her frailty decides it's all a LITTLE too much for her, and subsequently regrets her lost love until the end of her days. But, inspired by the world's weirdest date, she decides to dedicate her life to the study of Jewish history, so I guess ... that's all right .....?

She is assisted in her endeavors by Aaron, the third POV character. Aaron is an insufferable American Jewish Ph.D. student. He is working on a dissertation about Shakespeare and the Jews, for which he has no evidence, so instead he spends the entire book obsessing over an unattainable Cool Girl. (And she is so textbook Cool Girl! The coolest girl of all! A girl who poses nude for artists who capture a certain something about her, a girl who's just realer than other girls, THE MAGICAL IDEAL.) He sends her incredibly long, pompous emails after a one-night stand which took place on an evening in which "he waited until Marisa was on her second beer -- he kept track from a distance, biding his time. When he approached at last, his own untouched beer dangling casually in his hand --" OKAY AARON, THANKS AND GOODBYE, YOU AND I ARE DONE.

But alas, we are not done with Aaron, we are not done with Aaron at all. Eventually Aaron does come to realize that he's insufferable! A significant part of this realization comes when he visits an archive and meets a shy, demure archivist who's bad at flirting, and is suddenly struck by how desperately sad it is that people like her may never find love because they're all overlooked by assholes like him. If only people like him paid attention to people like her, their lives might be fulfilling and the world would be better! ALAS.

(There are two other archivists in the book, The Interchangeable Patricias. They have a few moments of heroically rising to Helen's aid but mostly their role is to stand as icily competent, largely humorless glowering gate-guards over the sacred text, because of course.)

So basically everything about the modern sections was nonsense to me. (Also, I got mad every time they found a document that explained to them a Piece of the Mystery in a way that was way too narratively convenient. 'Oh, look, Ester doodled out her real name and her fake name next to each other and added a note that said 'HEY IT'S ALL MY NAMES!' Isn't that handy!')

Still, Ester's story in and of itself was good and compelling and interesting, and grudgingly I became invested in it despite myself...

And then spoilers! )

Links, Reminders, and Misc

Sep. 14th, 2017 01:51 pm
jimhines: (Snoopy Writing)
[personal profile] jimhines

Mirrored from Jim C. Hines.

(no subject)

Sep. 13th, 2017 10:38 pm
skygiants: Sheska from Fullmetal Alchemist with her head on a pile of books (ded from book)
[personal profile] skygiants
Juliet Takes a Breath was our book club book for the month of August. I am glad for the existence of this book in the world and I am glad I read it, and with that said my experience of reading it was largely one of OVERWHELMING CONTACT EMBARRASSMENT.

Juliet Takes a Breath is the coming-of-age story of Juliet Milagros Palante, a young Puerto Rican lesbian from the Bronx who's spending the summer of 2002 interning in Portland, Oregon! with international feminist sensation Harlowe Brisbane! author of "Raging Flower," a book about VAGINA POWER!

Unsurprisingly, pretty much every time Harlowe Brisbane spoke a sentence I wanted to retract my head all the way back inside my nonexistent turtle shell until a million years had passed and womyn power white lady feminism was a thing that could be discussed with distant scholarly complacency, like galvanism or the Cathar heresy. This is completely expected and indeed clearly intended by the book, but nonetheless, OH LORD.

Anyway, not everything is Harlowe Brisbane being exactly the way you'd expect; a great deal of the book is Juliet dealing with a wide range of family reactions to her coming-out (the width of the range in particular is really good!), and Learning New Vocabularies, and finding comfortable queer POC spaces, and attending lectures about intersectional solidarity in the wake of 9/11, and making romantic gay teen mixtapes full of Ani DiFranco songs! But oh, lord. At least one book club member said it rang extremely true to their experience and memories of Portland in 2002. Myself, in 2002 I was nowhere near Portland nor any of the Cool Yet Problematique gay spaces that Rivera is writing about here and it's PROBABLY just as well, but it does seem quite likely to me that walking around Portland in 2002 was a lot like walking around a physical manifestation of certain bits of tumblr, and that is indeed the sense I got of it from this book.

[a sidenote: the acknowledgments in the back include pointed thanks and reference to the time that the author spent with Inga Muscio, author of 'Cunt: A Declaration of Independence.' I'm not necessarily saying this book was a callout post, but .... anyway Inga Muscio also cheerfully blurbed the book on the front so it seems there were no hard feelings on her part and all is well.]

The Tick, Season One

Sep. 13th, 2017 11:43 am
jimhines: (Snoopy Writing)
[personal profile] jimhines

My introduction to The Tick came in the late 90s, with the animated series. A few of my grad school friends and I would get together each week, eat Pillsbury cinnamon rolls, and watch The Tick (and a few other shows.)

I loved it. I loved the humor, the silliness, the undermining of superhero tropes, and the overall sense of fun.

This was my background as I logged onto Amazon Prime to watch their live-action take on The Tick.

It felt like the entire show was filmed using the same Gritty Angst Filter they used on Batman v Superman. They managed to make The Tick almost entirely joyless.

Spoilers follow…

Read the rest of this entry » )

Mirrored from Jim C. Hines.

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