Re: One Of Us

1

Good for them.


Posted by: Nathan Williams | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 6:37 PM
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Another "this is so obviously correct and there's no way anyone will disagree with it" post.

I'm not yet liberal enough to respect xose who prefer that you refer to xem with non-standard pronouns, or at least without eye rolling. Working on that.


Posted by: dalriata | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 6:42 PM
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I don't actually know any non-standard pronoun users, so I've figured I'll wait on being annoyed about it until I actually need it.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 6:57 PM
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I'm not yet liberal enough to respect xose who prefer that you refer to xem

I've been meaning to say that the word liberal is too broad for the kinds of meaning we've been giving it lately. There's no doubt a sort of person who would use those pronouns, has the feelings about cops and soldiers J. McQ complained about today, or conforms to the various strawman positions Oggtrolling is aimed at. We've all met them, none of us considers we are them, but we need a word for them that doesn't describe nearly every educated person on our side of the issues in its most common meaning.

This is where that crap about the "L" word comes from: definitions nobody wants applied to themselves.


Posted by: idp | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 6:58 PM
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I wouldn't say that no one here is a non-standard pronoun user. Generally, you sound like you're trying to draw an across the board distinction between 'us' and silly leftists, which is not a distinction I'm comfortable with.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 7:09 PM
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I'm trying to draw a distinction between Ze and silly leftists, thank Vor very much.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 7:10 PM
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Except whatever I'm trying to do I'm clearly on the other side from idp.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 7:11 PM
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8

I don't think I've ever seen ze and zir and the like outside of the context of people on the Internet making fun of them. And I have (a little, but still) experience with trans activist types.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 7:13 PM
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6: Ze is just one guy and he makes funny videos and I confuse him, sometimes, with Rob Cockerham. Silly leftists are completely distinct.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 7:14 PM
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10

Linguistically, is a pronoun that refers to only one, unique, person still a pronoun? Or is it more of an alternate name?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 7:18 PM
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11

Mom says it's more of a nickname.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 7:19 PM
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10: bro.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 7:20 PM
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6: I didn't know you were a Bujold fan!


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 7:21 PM
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14

As for language, this summer some cow-orkers and I were having a grammar-snob conversation, and the Oxford Comma came up. We had a funny debate, with people on both sides. But the one guy whose position I just couldn't abide was completely agnostic. He just mixes it up, whatever looks right.

No! You must choose a side! was my gut reaction.

He may have been trolling, but I'm sure plenty of people do that—make a grammar/writing choice based on aesthetics (what looks good, what sounds good), rather than consulting a rule about it. And it probably works out fine, more or less.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 7:27 PM
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That's how I do pretty much everything: by ear. Commas are oxford or not based on how the sentence sounds.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 7:29 PM
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14: you've read my posts, and you think I have a consistent stance on grammar?


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 7:31 PM
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17

Weirdos.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 7:34 PM
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18

My lady friend, who was in deep the radical activist weeds in college, has a lot of trouble keeping up with her old friends evolving pronoun preferences. One of them wants singular they used: as in, "I haven't seen Pat since they went to the store", where 'they' and 'Pat' are co-referential.


Posted by: Criminally Bulgur | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 7:34 PM
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I wondered if this post was inspired by this week's Dan Savage column (the questioner's friends refuse to use gendered pronouns on principle, but use "they" instead of "ze/zim"). You don't see many Kevin Drum/Dan Savage crossovers.

I kind of came to the same conclusion recently (though I didn't put out a press release). "He or she" is too awkward and randomly choosing "he" or "she" is tiresome.


Posted by: Yawnoc | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 7:40 PM
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20

18 is exactly the usage discussed by Dan Savage.


Posted by: Yawnoc | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 7:41 PM
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21

The usage in 18–20 really irks me.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 7:43 PM
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22

Perhaps for no reason!


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 7:43 PM
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23

10: I don't think so. In English a proper noun can take the enclitic 's to form a genitive but a pronoun can't.


Posted by: dalriata | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 7:44 PM
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24

They hates it.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 7:45 PM
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25

The uses I'm complaining about always imply that liberal means a silly, doctrinaire position the person using it doesn't hold.

Leftist, with its connotations of relatively clear political views and agendas isn't quite right for what I'm alluding to, because the views being made fun of don't always seem to map left/right.

It's using the word liberal for that disdain I'm complaining about. My comment should have been clearer that I'm not implying there should be one term for the various kinds of silliness, or that particularly there are people "to the left of us sensible people" who conform to all these strawman types.

We're all free and should be to dissent from the consensus on any given issue, or maybe on many.


Posted by: idp | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 7:45 PM
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26

24 -> 21


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 7:46 PM
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27

I'm still stuck using "he or she" professionally. I'd much rather use "they" and save the work.


Posted by: Tom Scudder | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 7:49 PM
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Fwiw I wasn't using it with disdain. But I was trolling a little. I've run across people on twitter (and follow, I think) with they/them/their as their preferred pronoun set. Honestly not sure if I've seen ze/zim/zeir or whatever.

I don't abide by "he or she" as it is both stilted and implies those are the only valid options. "They" is much better.


Posted by: dalriata | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 7:50 PM
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I do sometimes choose "she" for what I guess are political reasons. Like, if I'm making up a hypothetical, I'll use "she" for the judge.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 7:51 PM
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I found the Spivak variant (I think they were called) ey/em/eir as singular nongendered versions of they/them/their easy to use and not obtrusive in conversation, though they were in writing. I tend to just make things plural whenever possible to make it easy to use they.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 7:53 PM
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31

I never really thought about how "he or she" fits into a world of 51 gender categories.


Posted by: Yawnoc | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 7:54 PM
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32

30: I've found they make me sound like a cockney urchin.


Posted by: dalriata | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 7:58 PM
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33

32: I would deliberately underenunciate. It was not a particularly long-lived experiment.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 8:01 PM
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34

I often write around for possessive and objective pronouns. I frequently write "s/he" for the subjective.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 8:04 PM
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35

I never really thought about how "he or she" fits into a world of 51 gender categories.

The deconstructionists go with he || she.


Posted by: Criminally Bulgur | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 8:04 PM
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36

35 is actually appealing!


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 8:05 PM
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37

There's clearly an element of evolving identities in the pronoun usages, which I'm agnostic about. They will do me just fine, and if any other usages emerge I'll probably adapt them when they become widely known.

What I want to know is why the word liberal is the trolling word of choice?


Posted by: idp | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 8:07 PM
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38

Or adopt.


Posted by: idp | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 8:09 PM
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39

33: too late. I've already pictured you wearing a flat cap, on crutches, and covered in soot. (I have a very particular set of stereotypes.)

35: || is usually short circuiting. Male shouldn't be the default.

I'm getting loopy. Good night.


Posted by: dalriata | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 8:09 PM
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21 gets it right. There's a vast range of cases where singular "they" or "their" is perfectly idiomatic and acceptable, but there are also cases where it isn't that crop up every now and then and don't have an obviously better alternative.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 8:10 PM
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41

39.1: I've never denied any of those things, so I think you're safe! And good night.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 8:11 PM
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37: well, it worked, didn't it? Definitely shades of ideological purity, but more hat I associate it with not being an ass in the sense of respecting others' cultural preferences. There's an effort/non-asinineness trade off and i often make the shirker
choice. This isn't very coherent and I'll think about it more in he morning.


Posted by: dalriata | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 8:13 PM
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43

39.2: but strikethrough


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 8:13 PM
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44

I am all for striking through men. Who's with me, laydeez?


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 8:22 PM
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45

I wouldn't have thought you'd be into that.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 8:27 PM
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46

When I talk quickly I find myself dropping h's. Not sure if that's emergent US English.


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 8:28 PM
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47

Okay, nosflow, I'm actually not. Sorry, pacifist even more than misandrist. I am never going to get to max asshole at this rate, am I?


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 8:29 PM
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48

Let's all post pictures of our assholes.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 8:37 PM
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49

I think I have been misunderstood!


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 8:39 PM
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50

That's ok though.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 8:42 PM
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51

NEB IS TALKING ABOUT SEX

MAN SEX


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 8:42 PM
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52

or perhaps XES NAM!


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 8:43 PM
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53

It seems like trans activists, at least judging by what I've seen on twitter and coverage of gender and sexuality I've seen in progressive media, have lately been more concerned with the proper use of "he" or "she" to refer to trans men and trans women, than with gender neutrality (cf. which pronouns various media outlets have used to refer to Chelsea Manning).


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 8:43 PM
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54

I suppose there are many ways in which one might strike through another. Or not, as the case may be. That said, #nebslashforever.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 8:44 PM
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55

(#teamnebslashforever? I didn't think the hashtag through, which makes it no different from anything else.)


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 8:44 PM
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56

MANDOM!


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 8:44 PM
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57

I can apply strikethrough tags all night long. Ladeez.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 8:44 PM
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58

Striking through multipliciter dicitur.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 8:48 PM
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59

I really thought I knew something about sex before this thread, but now I'm thinking I should confine myself to gender.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 8:51 PM
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60

56 loosely to 51, but really I think it can respond to anything.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 8:54 PM
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61

59, for instance.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 8:55 PM
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62

I feel no shame in admitting I don't understand MANDOM. I'm not sure even teo can enlighten me.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 8:57 PM
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63

Smoke 'im or 'er, if ou've got 'im or 'er!


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 8:58 PM
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64

So now that I'm saying this, maybe "one of us" is not in fact a good post title for me, even if it is for K-Drum.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 8:58 PM
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65

MANDOM!


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 8:59 PM
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66

Aw, you'll always be "one of us", Thorny.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 9:00 PM
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67

Okay, I've watched it but not read the explication. Probably that was what I was missing. But really, people who find men attractive, THAT mustache? This is like Gone with the Wind, where Clark Gable has the exact same mustache and eyebrows and supposedly that's hot rather than just alarming.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 9:01 PM
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68

Writ of mandomus.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 9:02 PM
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69

66 is true. I even got a true diminutive last night!


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 9:02 PM
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67: You should also definitely read the thread.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 9:05 PM
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70: I've done so before and am doing so now. That said, I don't think it really explains MANDOM.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 9:06 PM
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72

Though has there ever been any discussion of Greg Pak's Asian Pride Porn, which is not porn but also probably not totally safe for work?


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 9:10 PM
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73

Certain parts of Flushing?


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 9:14 PM
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74

I have two friends who prefer singular "they." I'm on board as long as people are patient and realize it's not second nature for others to switch and aren't a big drama monarch about it if someone slips up.


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 9:16 PM
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75

DRAMA MONARCH! MANDOM!! !!!!


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 9:19 PM
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76

Drama monarchs are social butterflies.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 9:28 PM
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75: See, now you're getting it!


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 9:34 PM
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78

THEY MAnSPLAINED MANDOM


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 9:58 PM
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79

Successfully!


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 10:00 PM
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80

74: Do they prefer singular they for themselves or for everybody?


Posted by: Yawnoc | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 10:07 PM
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19-21: There was a nicely subtle Language Log post once explaining that idiomatic singular their -- the usage that ordinary speakers of English have always used if not self-consciously avoiding it as 'ungrammatical' -- requires indefiniteness in the referent. It sounds right where it refers back to 'someone' or 'anyone', but not to a known particular individual. The interesting bit was that the required indefiniteness doesn't have to include undetermined gender: "Someone left their bra in the women's locker room" is fine, idiomatically, even though "her" is also a viable possibility.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 10:54 PM
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No reason that singular they/them/their can't be extended to individuals who want to use it, of course. But that is an extension of the longstanding idiomatic usage.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 10:56 PM
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83

81: This post is my favorite example of that usage.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 10:58 PM
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84

Hey, I think this is the first time I've been insomniac enough to appear on the Teo and Smearcase show.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 11:25 PM
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85

I thought I was going to mess around online for a minute or two and then get back to sleep, but it's been over an hour now.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 11:27 PM
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86

Please welcome our special guest, LB!


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 11:27 PM
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87

I think I'm awake because it's been the first night it's been cool enough to have the air conditioner off and the windows open (in other buildings, that was a few days ago, but ours somehow stays hot about 48 hours after the weather changes). I like street noise better than the white noise of the air conditioner, but I think the transition is keeping me awake.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 11:33 PM
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88

The 1 train is not a quiet thing.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 11:35 PM
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89

Alaska's probably fairly quiet at night. Do moose make much noise?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 11:41 PM
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90

OP title -> 85


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 11:42 PM
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91

Most of our special guests are brought here by insomnia, but LB is really going above and beyond in her detailed analysis of it.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 11:42 PM
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89: Moose don't make much noise, but traffic still does, and I'm in a part of the state with much more of the latter than the former. It's generally not loud enough to keep me up, though.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 11:44 PM
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Ah, this part of Alask where teo lives:

A large cookie cutter brought down on El Paso could lift something like Anchorage into the air. Anchorage is the northern rim of Trenton, the center of Oxnard, the ocean-blind precincts of Daytona Beach. It is condensed, instant Albuquerque.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 11:44 PM
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94

+a


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 11:45 PM
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95

I am considering warm milk. This is complicated by not having a functioning microwave, but I should be able to manage a small pot without anything terrible happening.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 11:45 PM
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93: That's the one.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 11:45 PM
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97

Pwned but with added McPhee.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 11:45 PM
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98

I have lots of adventures in gently boiling milk for making Cream of Wheat. (To which I add brown sugar, all in the name of mocking Halford.)


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 11:47 PM
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99

To mock Halford is to support parks, park rangers, and teochka.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 11:48 PM
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100

Instant Albuquerque is an interesting concept. For city, just add water. Come to think, I suppose that describes the West generally.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 11:48 PM
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101

My specific neighborhood is less generic-suburban than McPhee's description implies, but it fits most of the city very well.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 11:48 PM
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100: Heh. It actually describes Albuquerque less well than most Western cities, but still, yeah. Anchorage, not so much.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 11:50 PM
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103

In Alaska, you add ice.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 11:52 PM
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104

No, the ice is already there. You have to add everything else.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 11:53 PM
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105

Go somewhatt further west and ice adds you.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 11:53 PM
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106

I am rather disgruntledy insomniac tonight. Many small stresses coming together in pre-vacation crescendo, but an out-of-the-blue minor hostile encounter with my hostile neighbor has discomfited me the most.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 09-10-14 11:58 PM
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105: Speaking of which, this isn't ominous at all.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 12:00 AM
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108

And here's a thing to not do to a family member is going on vacation: Write some friend of yours who lives in the general vicinity and set the expectation that the family member would love to visit with them. My sister and my wife's brother managed to bookend the trip with that ploy. Both people we know and like, but we had a plan, and now we're the assholes.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 12:04 AM
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109

But we should get vulcanism in between.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 12:05 AM
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110

good vulcanism


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 12:05 AM
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111

You're going to New Guinea?


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 12:06 AM
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112

110 sounds like what you say to a lava flow as you scratch it affectionately behind the ears.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 12:08 AM
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113

Or when you're trying to sweet talk it into not running thorugh your living room. "Go get that asshole next door, he not very gneiss."


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 12:10 AM
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114

So geologically incoherent to mix lava and metamorphics. Now I have shame.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 12:11 AM
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115

Do you sleepless zomboids want to talk about politics? Okay, here goes: if people like me don't vote for her, and I'm starting to wonder if I will, I wonder if Hillary Clinton will win. As Obama with more even more militarism (or at least tough talk), more Clintonism, and fewer environmental credentials, I wonder whose votes she picks up? The bitter clingers? Or just women? I suppose that must be the hope, that she'll do well enough among women and working-class whites to make up for the seemingly inevitable loss of progressives and people of color.

It's too early for these discussions, obviously, and even when they're timely I don't expect I'll be interested in having them, but it's the middle of the night, so the time seems ripe for idle chatter.


Posted by: Von Wafer | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 12:26 AM
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I suppose this is just my anxiety, which is what has me up in the first place, talking. Surely teo will reassure me that fracking is less bad than I fear and then sifu will remind me that elections don't turn on issues but are decided entirely by fundamentals, so stuff like this doesn't matter regardless. See? I'm self-soothing!


Posted by: Von Wafer | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 12:28 AM
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I think it's all about the alternatives - can she win is only a meaningful question if you're saying who she's running against. With all her downsides, I think she beats any plausible Republican -- she's not bad enough to drive Democrats into staying home.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 12:31 AM
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118

Fracking is less bad than you fear. It certainly does have the potential for local environmental problems and requires strict regulation, which not all states have been able or willing to provide, and it's certainly reasonable to worry that developing countries will have similar regulatory problems. It really is killing off coal use in the US, though, probably for good, and that's a huge plus for mitigating climate change.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 12:33 AM
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119

Why would she lose people of color?


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 12:34 AM
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120

I don't have any particularly strong opinions on HRC. I'll certainly vote for her if she's the nominee, but I don't see that as nearly as inevitable as everyone else seems to at this point.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 12:34 AM
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121

I was counting on something like 118. And for what it's worth, I nodded my head at 117, though I'm less confident that Democrats won't stay home than you are.


Posted by: Von Wafer | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 12:38 AM
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Does anyone else remember how back in 2008 everyone seemed to agree that that was Hillary's last chance for the nomination since she'd be too old in 2016? And yet, here we are, and everyone seems to agree that she's going to run in 2016 and probably win.

(Not that I necessarily agree that she's too old now, it's just weird to see how much the conventional wisdom has changed.)


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 12:42 AM
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I don't recall thinking she'd be too old in 2016. In fact, I recall having conversations in which I said the "too old" line would be used against her, because of sexism (I'm really not accusing you of that at all), but that, perhaps counter-intuitively, she would have both history and demographics on her side: many old men have run and won in the past, and women, on balance, live longer and stronger than men. And now I'm sure that's sexist. I blame the patriarchy and insomnia.


Posted by: Von Wafer | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 12:47 AM
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124

Maybe it wasn't as universal as I'm remembering. I definitely remember it being a thing a lot of people said, though.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 12:49 AM
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125

I do think it's silly to worry much about any of this stuff more two years before the election. A lot can happen in that much time.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 12:53 AM
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126

I actually think people are underrating her age as an element still. Not if she's perfectly healthy over the next two years, which is most likely, but any significant health problem and her age is an issue again.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 12:53 AM
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127

And if she has a health problem that's significant enough, she'll be out entirely and the political landscape will be drastically different. Not that that's particularly likely (she's not that old), but again, a lot can happen in two years.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 12:57 AM
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125 is certainly true. Like I said, but for the insomnia, I wouldn't have raised the issue and probably shouldn't have done so regardless.


Posted by: Von Wafer | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 1:01 AM
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I am going to be a wreck tomorrow.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 1:04 AM
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We did our part to bore you to sleep.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 1:06 AM
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And we would have succeeded if it weren't for that meddling noise.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 1:09 AM
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129: me too. Actually, I'm going to be a wreck for the next few of months, at which point we'll finally move into a house that will be ours. Living in temporary housing, and especially sleeping in a bed that isn't mine, is really getting me down.


Posted by: Von Wafer | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 1:09 AM
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So why is it taking you so long to move into your new house, anyway? Have you explained this before and I just missed it?


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 1:16 AM
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It took us a very long time to find a house we like. Then, when we finally found something to buy, the owner insisted on renting back from us through the beginning of November. In fairness, she was away for the entire summer in Britain, where she's moving. Actually, she didn't want the house on the market until September 1, when she returned from overseas, but allowed herself to be convinced to sell while she was away. Now she needs a ton of time to pack her huge amount of stuff, including a vast art collection, for the trip across the Atlantic. And finally, once we take possession on November 1, we have to have some work done on the place, meaning that we're not likely to move in until December.


Posted by: Von Wafer | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 1:27 AM
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That does sound like a huge pain to deal with. Good luck with everything.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 1:29 AM
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And now it's getting actually late even here, and I should probably go to bed. Good night, everyone who's still wracked with insomnia. Drink a lot of coffee tomorrow.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 1:31 AM
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I'm tempted to make fun of Teo in 118 for going full native in oil and gas land, but I basically agree with him there.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 1:55 AM
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110 sounds like what you say to a lava flow as you scratch it affectionately behind the ears.

"Nice cleavage."


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 1:56 AM
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Actually, I'll go further, because that's what I do -- not voting for Hillary based on the article linked in 115 for "environmental" reasons is stone cold dead wrong. The big world environmental problem is coal (and oil a little, but mostly coal, full stop). Working to encourage fracking more globally and thus have cleaner natural gas replace coal is one of the better realistic things a Secretary of State can do in the current US for the global environment, and that she spent any time on the issue at all suggests that climate stuff is at least something of a priority.

(Also I have strong reason to believe that President Hillary would be slightly better than Obama on environmental stuff -- not a lot, just slightly -- because she cares about it a little bit more. In general of course a Clinton presidency is likely to be pretty indistinguishable from an Obama presidency, unless she gets hit with some big transformation of the political climate that doesn't have much to do with her).


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 2:12 AM
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Isn't "they" just how the language naturally settled this issue ages ago? That said, xose and xem have the underrated advantage that if you use them with conviction you'll sound like Zsa Zsa Gabor.


Posted by: Alex | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 2:16 AM
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140: well, yes. People have been using singular "they" for centuries.

I didn't know you were a Bujold fan!

IIRC Bujold just used "it" for hermaphrodites, and "he" and "she" elsewhere.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 2:30 AM
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Yeah my view on fracking is that properly and heavily regulated, it's probably OK, but fuck having it near my house or water.


Posted by: Keir | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 2:31 AM
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Problem with fracking (underestimated) is that methane is itself an extremely powerful greenhouse gas, and you don't need to have much of that leaking into the atmosphere to make gas even worse than coal from a greenhouse gas point of view (though coal is still worse from the point of view of particulates, sulphates etc.)
http://www.motherjones.com/environment/2014/09/methane-fracking-obama-climate-change-bill-mckibben

http://www.motherjones.com/environment/2014/09/methane-fracking-obama-climate-change-bill-mckibben

Even despite this, it's kind of a Taser syndrome. Tasers are great if you use them instead of firearms. But the trouble is that once you have them, you use them instead of reason. Gas might be great as a coal substitute, but it's terrible as a renewables substitute.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 3:56 AM
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Yeah. Methane is one of NZ's big greenhouse outputs, obviously.


Posted by: Keir | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 4:02 AM
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Yeah, but methane burns out of the atmosphere quickly (or, more precisely, turns to a relatively tiny amount of CO2) so it's not nearly the long-term threat as CO2 to long-term rising temperatures (not to mention that you can solve leakage problems with fracking relatively easily). Calls to tackle the evils of methane first at the cost of higher CO2 emissions are usually sponsored by coal and oil industry people who totally miss that key point.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 4:21 AM
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Fuck a load of fracking. They put so much effort into avoiding any local regulation or monitoring, they must be illegally dumping far more often than the alarming number of times they get caught at it.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 4:31 AM
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145: ok, good. Hope that's right. Still would be better to get away from fossil fuels altogether though.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 4:47 AM
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126. Hillary's health has already been zeroed in on by the right-wing media. She had that fall some time ago, and they made a lot of claims about how badly affected she was, and insinuations about cover-ups. Yes, /shocked, /shocked, but I'm sure it will be replayed in 2016, plus anything else that might happen between now and then.

145. Methane lasts a few years, to expand on Halford's point. CO2 can last centuries or longer, depending on how quickly it's taken up by plants or gets included in carbonate rocks. Methane does really make trouble if you get a lot of it at once (like if all the methane in the Arctic went up quickly, which is an apocalyptic fear some people have).


Posted by: DaveLMA | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 5:13 AM
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I'm just going to pretend I never read 15.

I heavily edited a memo to the secretary and the governor the other day, and then fielded a few questions from the original author. No, I didn't just randomly take out some of your colons while leaving others. I took out the ungrammatical ones.


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 5:30 AM
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I'm just going to pretend I never read 15.

Some things can't be unseen, I'm afraid.


Posted by: Von Wafer | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 5:32 AM
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I'm just going to pretend that I never read, heard about or was informed of 15.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 5:34 AM
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No, I didn't just randomly take out some of your colons while leaving others.

Things that sound more reassuring from editors than surgeons.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 5:37 AM
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15 is more or less how I function day-to-day. Comity among the colon-agnostic! The Oxford comma can be really helpful, but sometimes is irrelevant and looks stupid. I actually tend to avoid the Oxford comma except when necessary for clarity. So there.


Posted by: parodie | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 5:41 AM
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I tend to put them in papers when I give my edits. Then somebody else takes them out.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 5:43 AM
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. No, I didn't just randomly take out some of your colons while leaving others. I took out the ungrammatical ones.

"Like the island of Cyprus, your memo has been partially decolonised."


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 5:46 AM
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I got pulled up, and pretty heavily criticised by the examiners of my D.Phil for my use [or rather consistent non-use] of the Oxford comma. It was one of many WMYBSALB-eries, but one of the major ones.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 5:48 AM
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Re: fracking, I'm sort of surprised nobody except MH seems to strongly disfavor it. I can't make up my mind about the chemicals they're using, the possibility of groundwater contamination, and the exciting new seismic activity some scientists are saying it risks. My suspicion is that the industry has bought enough experts that it's impossible to made a decision based on data. At least the solvents probably don't contain lead.


Posted by: ydnew | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 5:57 AM
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There is potential to frack somewhat responsibly. It will generally be unrealized in practice.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 6:21 AM
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I'm sort of surprised nobody except MH seems to strongly disfavor it. ...I hate it, think it is catastrophic. Also uses way too much water. I am very far from the only opponent worldwide, can't speak for the crowd here...cause Obama!

Michael Hudson

Vice President Joe Biden's son, R. Hunter Biden, recently was appointed to the board of Burisma, a Ukrainian oil and gas company registered in Cyprus, long a favorite for post-Soviet operators. The firm has enough influence over Kiev politics to make prospective gas-fracking lands a military objective. "Ukrainian troopers help installing shale gas production equipment near the east Ukrainian town of Slavyansk, which they bombed and shelled for the three preceding months, the Novorossiya news agency reports on its website citing local residents. Civilians protected by Ukrainian army are getting ready to install drilling rigs. More equipment is being brought in, they said, adding that the military are encircling the future extraction area."[6]

One report notes the extent to which "pro-Russian" means opposing a gas grab:

The people of Slavyansk, which is located in the heart of the Yzovka shale gas field, staged numerous protest actions in the past against its development. They even wanted to call in a referendum on that subject. ... Countries like the Czech Republic, the Netherlands and France have given up plans to develop shale gas deposits in their territories. Not only them but also all-important Germany, which two weeks ago announced it would halt shale-gas drilling for the next seven years over groundwater pollution concerns.[7]


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 6:22 AM
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This story will give you some idea of why I've decided to reflexively oppose any drilling (and Corbett and majorities of the PA legislature). They passed a law that not only required all localities to allow drilling, but forbid them from using zoning to control it. Plus the doctor gag rule. But mostly the former. It was deliberately designed mainly to say "Fuck You" to city dwelling-liberals and I'm responding in kind.

And when the Supreme Court, which is so bad that more people leave it to go to prison than retirement, ruled that part unconstitutional, they had the never to criticize the court for on the grounds that it
"set aside several critical environmental protections".


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 6:22 AM
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Technically, "Michael Hudson" is also MH.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 6:23 AM
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"never" s/b "nerve"


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 6:35 AM
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I recently had a client complain that there were several grammatical and orthographical errors in a document of ours. Gee, in a document of 1,000 pages prepared under time pressure? Can't see how that happened!

What made it such a WMYBSALB moment was that their major complaint concerned the recurrent appearance of sentences with prepositions at the end, a practice that no respectable English style manual forbids. I wasn't the original author of the document, so I took the criticism in stride, but my colleague who had pride of authorship was affronted. I was listening to her purring courteously on the conference line, thanking them for the constructive feedback, while simultaneously seeing her outraged, expletive-filled emails pop up on my screen.


Posted by: knecht ruprecht | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 6:39 AM
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I add all commas by the method in 15. This worked a lot better before my brain slowed down, started frequently pausing, and trailing off


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 6:43 AM
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The rule in 15 does make me want to read something Shatner wrote. Except I'm not going to read Tek Wars anyway.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 6:44 AM
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160: Save it for the fracking thread, maverick.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 6:45 AM
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All of you, shut up about fracking.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 6:46 AM
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Commas are oxford or not based on how the sentence sounds.

"The dinner consisted of turtle soup, poached salmon, pheasant, roast beef, a lemon sorbet, a cheese souffle, aged Stilton, port, and nuts" - Oxford comma.

"The Miami court heard that Jeffers, after ingesting PCP, had removed his clothes, run down the street waving a shotgun, screamed abuse at passers-by, attempted to have sex with a fire hydrant, and finally collapsed with heatstroke" - definitely not Oxford comma.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 7:44 AM
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126, 148 - while an actual health problem could be an issue, made-up right-wing "OMG so frail" attacks are going to be problematic, since they will be simultaneously attacking her as a vicious ball-breaking bitch. I realize that people in the wingnutsphere will have no problem picturing her as a frail old lady and ball-breaking bitch simultaneously, but I doubt it will push far outside.


Posted by: Tom Scudder | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 7:46 AM
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169: we are talking about a movement here that argued Clinton's constant womanising was evidence that he was secretly gay.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 7:48 AM
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the wingnutsphere will have no problem picturing her as a frail old lady and ball-breaking bitch simultaneously

Just like Obama is an effete wine-sipping intellectual elitist and an ignorant Southside Chicago thug who can't speak without a teleprompter. No problem at all, really.


Posted by: knecht ruprecht | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 7:52 AM
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I know that "too old" is generally an argument powered by motivated reasoning, but I genuinely do feel that 70+ is too old and HRC, who will be 68, I think, on inauguration, is in legitimate "maybe too old" territory. You all have met old people, right? It's really not at all uncommon for a person to enter their 70s more-or-less OK and finish them being completely out to lunch. And have you noticed that the strains of office seem to add about 10 years of wear and tear to Presidents?


Posted by: Yawnoc | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 8:02 AM
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None of which is to say I'm not going to vote for HRC over whoever the Republicans stand up, or that I foresee supporting another Democrat in the primaries. I'll take a partially-senile Democrat over a young vibrant Republican any day.


Posted by: Yawnoc | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 8:04 AM
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And the last president we had who entered office at around that age ended up doing just that - starting out basically okay and then very quickly degenerating into a non-functional dementia. Of course, that's not something Republicans are comfortable bringing up, but it is a legitimate worry at that age.

But yeah I'd also still pick a senile democrat over a non-senile republican. I'd be tempted to pick a senile republican over a non-senile one, just in the hopes of making them look ridiculous and maybe limiting them to one term.


Posted by: MHPH | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 8:06 AM
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You all have met old people, right?

I have. In my experience, people who have worked in elite positions don't get old-old until 80 or close to it. Baring dementia or certain types of cancer. It isn't exactly fair from a distributional point of view, but a 68 year-old lawyer (leaving aside the Senate/Secretary of State/First Lady) is younger than a 58 year-old who worked in lawn maintenance or something.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 8:08 AM
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Keeping busy and engaged staves off much of the cognitive decline associated with aging. Being president is pretty damn busy and engaging.

I'll vote for a half-drowned wharf rat if that's who the Democrats put up as a candidate for POTUS. I don't vote for anymore. I vote against, and anyone who can get past the Tea Party in the primaries is going to be odious to me.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 8:13 AM
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I can see why they went with "Yellow Dog" instead of "Half-drowned Wharf Rat". It's just a more pleasant image.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 8:16 AM
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Does "active and engaged" cancel out "work constantly without enough sleep under more stress than the human mind can contemplate"?


Posted by: Yawnoc | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 8:20 AM
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Depending on the advisers/likely cabinet they picked I might vote for a Half-drowned Wharf Rat over Clinton. The pictures with other world leaders alone would be a solid incentive.


Posted by: MHPH | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 8:23 AM
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I think the "McCain is too cancer-riddled" argument was probably out of bounds. Which puts me in the uncomfortable position of preferring pure ageism to actual statistical evidence.


Posted by: Yawnoc | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 8:25 AM
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OT: bad sign. it took me until just now to realize why there were so many 9/11 memorials in my FB feed today. I honestly thought it was all maybe somehow related to the president's ISIS speech last night. The date didn't even register.


Posted by: urple | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 11:59 AM
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OK, colour me stupid, but what is WMYBSALB? "WHo made you ..."?


Posted by: Nworb Werdna | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 2:02 PM
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Why Must You Be Such A Little Bitch. Initially addressed to nosfloW in full grammar-pedant mode.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 2:06 PM
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181: yes, I thought, too, how odd today is the 11/9


Of course, "9-11" has never been a proper date in knifecrimea; and the usage in the immediate aftermath, as in "Nine Eleven changes everything", [deep echoey voice as if the speaker's iron testicles were rolling in his mighty cowboy boots], turned it into a fetish word entirely, rather than something with any calendrical reference.


Posted by: Nworb Werdna | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 2:06 PM
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182: You're smart enough, you just need to spend a few more hours/days reading the archives.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 2:07 PM
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183: Thanks sister. You're the blonde one, right, with the frizzy hair?


Posted by: Nworb Werdna | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 2:07 PM
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In fact, I grow greyer and greyer.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 2:17 PM
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It would have meant a lot more if you had taken the time and found out by yourself.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 2:17 PM
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183: "This is the way I take my sentences!" roared the neB.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 09-11-14 9:46 PM
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Haven't read the whole thread, but I did recently receive my first ever business email with "PGP: he/him/his" in the signature.


Posted by: k-sky | Link to this comment | 09-12-14 12:21 AM
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Haven't read the whole thread

It stays remarkably on-topic until quite late.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 09-12-14 12:27 AM
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Pretty Good Privacy pronouns?


Posted by: md 20/400 | Link to this comment | 09-12-14 9:50 PM
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Pretty Goddamn Phenomenal


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 09-12-14 9:53 PM
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