Friday, September 30, 2011

Mephedrone and Methylenedioxypyrovalerone

The new designer drugs are called "mephedrone and methylenedioxypyrovalerone."

They are not "bath salts."

I am sick and tired of articles that talk about "bath salts" without ever using the drugs' actual names. It would be like an article on heroin that only uses the word "smack," or an article about "crank" instead of about "methamphetamines."

There is enough confusion about what actual bath salts are versus the drug "bath salts" that it is stupid to use only the slang term.

That is all.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

My Little Pony: Biodiversity is Magic

Does anyone else here notice that My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic provides a template for what a multicultural multiracial race-realist society might look like?

There are three kinds of ponies (I assume they are races, but without knowing the herditary basis of pony-type, I cannot say for certain that the characteristics qualify as racial): earth ponies (normal), unicorn ponies (one horn in the middle of their head), and pegasi (winged ponies). Each has their own abilities: earth ponies tend to be more durable and have an easier time working the ground; unicorns can do magic, including telekinesis, with their horns; pegasi can fly, walk on clouds, and manipulate the weather.

What is interesting is that the three types of ponies have undeniable physical differences. You can't call the differences "social constructs" and no one tries to.

And yet, there is no resentment. Not a single time have I seen any of the ponies express jealousy or conflict based on these differences. Once one of the unicorns used magic to get wings, but it was to support her pegasus friend, not out of jealousy (although later she gets vain about her wings).

Interestingly enough, the show seems to posit that acknowledging biological differences between groups does not destroy unity or civilization.

An interesting, if unintentional, message from a kid's show.

Food for thought.

That is all.

Palin vs. Obama

Joseph Farah thinks that Sarah Palin should become a Democrat in order to challenge Obama in the primary. Supposedly, Republicans would join the Democratic Party in droves (where voting is partisan) in order to support her.

That's ridiculous. For someone to change parties and run like that just as a strategy to win, regardless of ideological agreement, she would have to be a huge attention whore. She would have to have no principles other than the desire for self-promotion, and could not really take any positions beyond minimal soundbites to excite the weak-minded.

Oh, wait. Yeah, she'd be perfect.

That is all.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Thoughts on 9/11

I remember that on 9/11, I was just starting grad school. I had breakfast with the guy running the labs I would be TA-ing.

After that, I went to the computer lab and checked out my political sites - at the time I was checking Jewish World Review. As I only checked the editorials, which were usually refreshed around 4 am, I didn't read anything as the planes were crashing.

Whatever else I was doing, I didn't hear or see anything about the attacks. I then went to freshman biology, which I was shadowing to help me be a TA. I saw someone listening to the radio on headphones outside the classroom. I heard someone talking (rather than singing) in their headphones, and assumed that they were listening to a sports game (this was about 11 am, I think). Someone asked him what was going on, and they said that planes had crashed into the World Trade Centers and the buildings had collapsed. My first question was "are you serious?" or something like that. They either mentioned the Pentagon and the plane in Pennsylvania, or I heard about them later when the class was over (I stayed in the class and went through the whole class as if nothing were different - I think I was sort of shocked and decided to go through the class and the nsort out what had happened).

As I recall, we had a cookout day that day (we were still were doing the "initiation" events for new students) and I walked around eating some burgers that had been grilled. I emailed some friends about remaining calm and not assuming anything. The rest of the day I think I watched news reports, etc.

I recall hearing someone blaring "Born in the USA" from another dorm that evening (I lived in the graduate/non-trad dorm).

The most interesting thing about my experience, now that I think about it, is that I was spared a lot of the early confusion because all of the planes had crashed and the towers had collapsed by the time I knew of anything, so there were no more surprises.

More on this later.

That is all - for now.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

PEOCompare

I recently received a request to link to the Professional Employer Organization Blog, and have decided to do so.

PEOs apparently deal with helping small businesses with HR issues.

Please check this blog out.

That is all.

Thursday, September 01, 2011

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