Morning Ed: Society {2017.07.19.W}

[So1] It turns out that Shakespeare isn’t the only sort of classics some conservatives can’t get on board with.

[So2] American television is dominating foreign stream sites. Unsurprisingly, the EU has implemented a quota.

[So3] Everything you never wanted to know about our collective sexual desires. Among other things, they’re not especially realistic.

[So4] Oh, man, remember Tremors? I never did see any of the sequels and never saw much reason to, so I’m not sure I’m going to watch the proposed TV show.

[So5] Luigi used to be the smart one, so why did he become the scared one? Maybe he just wasn’t the smart one.

[So6] The lesson here is never trust the Internet.

[So7] EDK: “If you can’t even monetize Trump’s shenanigans properly, what’s the point? Twitter, it’s time to take one for the team and close up shop.”

[So8] Matt Shapiro has some interesting background on the emotions of CG.

[So9] I remember the Neo Geo!

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Will Truman is a former professional gearhead who is presently a stay-at-home father in the Mountain East. He has moved around frequently, having lived in six places since 2003, ranging from rural outposts to major metropolitan areas. He also writes fiction, when he finds the time. ...more →

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52 thoughts on “Morning Ed: Society {2017.07.19.W}

  1. So1-

    Modern technology has revealed an irrefutable, if unpopular, truth: many of the statues, reliefs and sarcophagi created in the ancient Western world were in fact painted,”

    Wait, what? ‘Unpopular’?

    I think that’s a bit strawmanny, or at least motte & bailey.

    If anything the modern white nationalist (like his Nazi forebearer) is more than a bit *anti* classical Greco-Roman culture. For instance, making a big huge deal about how Arminius (Hermann) beat the Roman legions at Teutoburg forest, preserving a separate German culture and language from the Latin one, and maintaining a path for future Anglo Saxons. Unlike the Latinized Celts & Gauls of the rest of Western Europe.


    • I think you are over-estimating the value placed on internal consistency. Yes, on the one hand Herman the German gets idolized as a hero of the Aryan race. But so too does Athenian democracy get idolized. See the entire oeuvre of Victor Davis Hanson. These may be slightly different crowds, but they are going in tandem.


    • Motte and bailey definitely came to my mind as well. Basically it looks like this:

      1. Scholar makes uncontroversial if little-known point about an issue in her field
      2. Scholar then extrapolates from this point to a social issue that has nothing to do with her field, with little beyond suppositions to back it up
      3. People object to and mock statements about social issue
      4. Trolls do their troll thing regarding social issue
      5. Inside Higher Ed lumps together conclusions 1 & 2, lumps together people in groups 3 & 4, leaves impression that conservatives are threatening a professor over her scholarly findings.


  2. So3 – It isn’t that people are searching for specific things, it is the terms that they use. High-larious!


  3. So8: This is long over due recognition for the work Serkis has done & continues to do. Much like the work of talented voice actors, people like Serkis are often unappreciated in the face of normal actors.


  4. Luigi is in a situation where he is facing ghosts who want to eat him and yet he continues anyway. He shivers with fright and yet he continues anyway. When he has conversations with other people they forget his name… and yet he continues anyway.

    And people focus on how he cries, how he gets frustrated, and how he shivers with fright rather than on how he continues anyway.

    You want a good example of “toxic masculinity” in gaming? Read So5 again.


  5. So8:
    Alright, hotshot, if you’re so convinced that the box can’t have emotions, you deal with the suicidal AI.

    If we can map out over a hundred facial muscles, and use those to code emotions visually, then we can simulate them on a computer screen. It may take some work, but that’s do-able work.


  6. So2 – It’s hard to find foreign TV on American streaming sites. Hulu has Spanish, Japanese, and Korean, but that’s it.

    Anyone know of any better sources?


  7. So7 – I don’t understand the point of the article. If it were arguing that Twitter is a bad investment so it should close shop, that’s one thing. Or if it were arguing that Twitter is a negative influence on our society so it should shut down. But instead it’s arguing primarily that Twitter helped Trump so it should shut down. Then it says that it’s just kidding.


  8. Mike Konczal defending the use of the term as a charge:

    I’m between Chait and Konczal. I think the term has been overused by leftier than thou types to denounce anyone to the right of Sanders and is now void for overbreath and vagueness. Just like conservatives have killed the useless of calling someone a socialist/communist by using it on anyone one step to the left of who ever is their idol at the moment.

    But there are neo-liberal views in the Democratic Party that still are dangerous like Rheeism in education.


    • Or the late 70s, when “Mikey” (from the Life Cereal Ads) died because he ate Pop Rocks candy and drank a soda?

      (I had friends whose moms banned them from consuming Pop Rocks on the basis of that rumor)

      (Except I think it was called Cosmic Candy then, instead of Pop Rocks? Maybe?)


  9. Vox examines whether criticism and snark against pseudoscience places like GOOP and/or Amanda Channtal Bacon’s “health” empire cause them to be more profitable and the answer is seemingly yes:

    This goes to my view that snark is the balm of the impotent. The NY Times did a profile of Amanda Channtal Bacon and the only conclusion you can reach is that the snark is causing her to cry all the way to the bank and her 4000 square feet Venice Beach home.


    • No it doesn’t show that criticizing people full of Goop makes them more profitable. It might suggest the efforts of the critics hasn’t slowed down the piling up of Goop. People have been drawn to stuff like that for a long time. Thinking that something can stop it now is ridiculous. That doesn’t mean the stupidest stuff shouldn’t be criticized when it is dangerous ( who-ha eggs, steam cleaning lady parts, etc). But really, there isn’t anything new about new agey psuedo science making bank.


      • It says something between what you and Saul say. Snark alone seems to not work against snake oil salespeople. Many people are attracted by the allure of miracle cures and snake oil salespeople can also rely on anti-elitism and the draw of secret knowledge. The best solution isn’t necessarily snark aimed at potential adult snake oil consumers but teaching children how to think analytically and critically about these issues before snake oil salespeople can target them. In this sense, snark against snake oil salespeople makes them more profitable because it is ineffective. It doesn’t convince people not to use them and not to listen to them.


      • MILF Sale!

        … there’s always plenty of ways to get bad publicity as a scammer. I know a friend who gave PR advice to Nigerian scammers. His advice was to make them childishly bad (filled with typos, grammatical errors, clear ‘this is probably a scam’ language), because they really didn’t need more than 100 hits. And anyone who goes crying to the police when they got bilked that hard, well… the police ain’t gonna be sympathetic.


      • My general view of how these things happen is:

        1. Gwen or Amanda or some other wooer comes out with a woo-filled product;

        2. The internet (professional media companies and individuals) get all snarky and sarcastic about the woo to try and denounce it. This happened when Elle did an article on Amanda Chattal Bacon’s daily diet and that diet sounded like it wasn’t real food and also costs a ton of money.

        3. The Wooers still manage to rake in tons of dough.

        I think people use snark because of their own lack of power and I question the use of snark as viable rhetoric.


    • “Vox examines whether criticism and snark against pseudoscience places like GOOP and/or Amanda Channtal Bacon’s “health” empire cause them to be more profitable and the answer is seemingly yes:”


      Remember how many times we saw those stories where Trump said something dumb and was just destroyed, just absolutely decimated? Like, there were hours and hours of TV time devoted to how he was That Bad Guy Who Said That Bad Thing, right there in front of everyone, and he’s not even sorry about it!

      How did that turn out, in the end?


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