Re: Libertarian: Resurrection

1

So pink! How sweet.


Posted by: mcmc | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 6:59 PM
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I didn't know she lived in Vegas.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 7:15 PM
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Blogging has changed a lot while she's been gone (with Facebook and Twitter siphoning off a large part of the audience, the big brands consolidating and the post-election exhaustion). I wonder how much it offers new or returned (or continuing) bloggers now.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 7:48 PM
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How did you find out about this so fast?


Posted by: mike d | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 7:52 PM
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It popped up in her RSS feed. She's been Twittering and Facebooking for ages, but I look forward to some long-form posts from her.


Posted by: Amber | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 8:03 PM
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The thinking man's McMegan.


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 8:16 PM
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6: No.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 8:21 PM
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She's shorter, it's true.


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 8:27 PM
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The thinking man's McMegan.

I was thinking vice versa, actually, but what the heck do I know?

I feel guilty about snarking on Jackie, because she seems so earnest (and hence innocent, after a fashion); but then I feel guilty about feeling guilty, because I despise any movement (libertarianism, say) which advocates for housecats as a morally superior substitute for children. So I'm stuck; and it's a real quandary, needless to say.


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 8:29 PM
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I expect her thoughts on Dollhouse will be disturbing.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 8:37 PM
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I wonder how it bodes that this thread has doubled the number of her comments in a fraction of the time--come to think of it, her post has nearly twice as many fancy web 2.0 tags as comments. Ms. PPP always sounded like kind of a one-woman show, so maybe it doesn't mean a thing.

Never hung out there myself, but from linked visits to the former site it became clear that she's not afraid to unleash the crazy. Possibly she's never learned how to argue (I've long suspected that lack is a generational flaw), but she does write with gusto. Are complete sentences involved as well? I can't recall her style more clearly than an impression of labored breezing, but what the Hell? Making it up as we go along is how and why we made the Net, right?

So is it all TV and bubblegum? Because a part of me hopes for a nascent Congressional campaign. I'm greedy that way.


Posted by: Rah | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 8:39 PM
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OK, tripled. Show-offs.


Posted by: Rah | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 8:40 PM
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Neither McMegan nor JP3 offer much for the thinking man, he said thoughtfully. Perhaps the phrase "the poor man's" could be put to better use here?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 8:40 PM
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Are you saying "thinking" is the opposite of "poor", Martch? Who's the real Randite here?


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 8:41 PM
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9: I don't think that libertarianism advocates for pets in the place of children, but what do I know, I'm just a nulliparous libertarian with housecats. Jackie has dogs, as I recall.


Posted by: Amber | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 8:42 PM
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I can't recall her style more clearly than an impression of labored breezing

Awesome.

(I'm sincerely hoping that encouraging Rah to comment more isn't going to result in Robust commenting less)


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 8:43 PM
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9.2: Clueless. She seems clueless. It's different from earnest, and much less endearing. Snark away.


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 8:43 PM
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14: Your mother?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 8:44 PM
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14: "the poor man's libertarian" is rather a humiliating moniker.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 8:45 PM
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9.1
I can't contemplate "vice versa" in context without bringing on migraine.

9.2
Moral superiority is at best a local phenomenon, and I can see how one might grant it to oneself for housing cats if one were, to put it delicately, not quite as philosophically subtle as one's own cat.

I'm above that, of course...


Posted by: Rah | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 8:47 PM
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In fact, I love the phrase "labored breezing" so much that I am now on the lookout for opportunities to use it.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 8:49 PM
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Jackie has dogs, as I recall.

According to her About Me page, "two crazed wiener dogs".


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 8:50 PM
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I feel guilty about snarking on Jackie, because she seems so earnest (and hence innocent, after a fashion); but then I feel guilty about feeling guilty, because she has espoused such uncharitable attiitudes towards our fellow human beings.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 8:50 PM
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The short man's McMegan, perhaps. I've never understood the fascination some people seem to have with her; it's not as though there aren't millions of random twits posting on the Web.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 8:51 PM
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millions of random twits posting on the Web

EVERYBODY LOOK AT ME!


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 8:52 PM
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24: She made her name with one especially hilarious post that was more than just run-of-the-mill inane and self-involved. Her rep's been living off that single post ever since.


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 8:53 PM
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I've never understood the fascination some people seem to have with her;

There's sort of a David Brent / Michael Scott quality to her: oblivious to what a terrible face she's presenting to the world.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 8:55 PM
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17.1: Yet clues are (occasionally) transferable. (Or so the artists would have it.)

19: "The poor man's libertarian" grows more amusing as I apply it to the usefulness to a poor man of a standard libertarian homily.


Posted by: Rah | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 8:55 PM
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26: Was that the "quality attracts quality" one?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 8:57 PM
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one especially hilarious post that was more than just run-of-the-mill inane and self-involved

Ah, I vaguely remember that. Still.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 8:58 PM
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Say what you will about JMPP, she does seem to have the courage of her convictions. Sadly, her convictions don't amount to much. The height of her irony, for me, is that her daily practice (engaging in party politics, being an SF con scenester) is so communitarian, in direct opposition to her stated goals.


Posted by: minneapolitan | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 8:59 PM
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"The poor man's libertarian" is great. I'm trying to think of some similarly discordant ones, but not having much luck so far.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 9:01 PM
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Oh. My. God. I'm catching up on BSG. What's my wife's real name? What's my wife's real name?


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 9:02 PM
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34

Jackie has dogs, as I recall.

I stand corrected. Pampered pouches as a morally superior substitute for children, then. The (libertarian) point is to repudiate any sense of obligation from any one generation toward any other generation (whether backwards or forwards in time), so that nobody need feel obliged to pay for Grandma's hip replacement surgery, nor for daycare for the kiddies. You're on your own, it's all just a matter of "choice," or of "lifestyle option," and why should we even have to pay taxes, anyway?


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 9:02 PM
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31: I'm not really sure "courage" is the operative attribute.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 9:02 PM
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The Net-famous post has slipped utterly from my mind, I confess. All I remember from the archives is a subsequent instance of what should have been a humiliating attempt to make a show of geek cred as a gamer.

Not that I have any such myself! But seriously, it would make a blood-elf laugh.


Posted by: Rah | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 9:03 PM
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35: the obliviousness of her convictions.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 9:04 PM
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36: "Quality"! Think "quality."


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 9:05 PM
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Er, I guess I meant "pampered pooches," but I suppose "pouches" will do in a pinch.


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 9:05 PM
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Pampered pouches

She has kangaroos.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 9:06 PM
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41

Not fast enough, self.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 9:06 PM
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Damn you, Apo. I knew you'd pick up on that typo.


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 9:07 PM
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43

If I had known that kangaroos were an option, I would have skipped children.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 9:11 PM
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44

Can't find the original post (don't want to spend any real time doing so), but here's a write-up about it.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 9:15 PM
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I sang "Tie Me Kangaroo Down, Sport" to my kids as a wallaby.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 9:15 PM
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"The poor man's libertarian" is great. I'm trying to think of some similarly discordant ones, but not having much luck so far.

"The Cadillac of menstrual cups"


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 9:17 PM
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Thanks, 44. She does kind of look like Dick Cheney! But also hot.


Posted by: Cryotc ned | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 9:18 PM
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The pimp chalice of menstrual cups.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 9:19 PM
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34: That interpretation would no doubt come as a surprise to the many libertarians with children. But this thread is for snarking on Jackie, so a caricature of her particular combination of beliefs is of course the relevant stand-in.

There is, somewhere, a transhumanist working on the pouch thing right now.


Posted by: Amber | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 9:20 PM
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Marsupial where it counts.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 9:21 PM
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The Cadillac of Cadillacs.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 9:22 PM
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What JP means is that he's a halfway decent boxer.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 9:23 PM
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"The Beer of Champagnes"


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 9:23 PM
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I'm the Schwinn of fish bicycles.

Laydeeeez.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 9:24 PM
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"A latter-day antediluvian"


Posted by: Criminally Bulgur | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 9:25 PM
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Slanket Pouch.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 9:26 PM
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53: That's Cook's.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 9:27 PM
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My grandfather used to say the Cadilllac was the Rolls-Royce of automobiles. He must have said that several hundred times in his life.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 9:28 PM
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Zimbabwe Billionaire.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 9:29 PM
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Ned's grandfather was the Clamato of energy drinks.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 9:30 PM
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Posted by: | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 9:34 PM
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I despise any movement ... which advocates for housecats as a morally superior substitute for children

Housecats are only irritating to their owners; children are horrible to anyone and anything around them, and then, once they pupate, turn into gross adult humans to boot.


Posted by: inaccessible island rail | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 9:37 PM
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Ned's grandfather is Yogi Berra?


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 9:37 PM
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Impressive that a tiny flightless bird can look beyond its own interests to realize that cats are not the world's most evil creature.


Posted by: Cryptic newd | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 9:40 PM
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Ned's grandfather was the commenting man's Yogi Berra.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 9:41 PM
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My grandfather used to say that "it's only criminals who hate music," and also that you could always tell a criminal "from his ears". I guess he had in mind in the standard mug shot, but I confess I'm not entirely sure.


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 9:41 PM
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The Unfogged of klezmer bands.


Posted by: Bave Dee | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 9:43 PM
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"it's only criminals who hate music,"

I have no idea what that could possibly mean.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 9:43 PM
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Some of them turn into hot adult humans, iir.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 9:43 PM
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No one comments about Ned's grandfather anymore.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 9:44 PM
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When you come to Ned's grandfather in the road, take him.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 9:45 PM
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69: "hot" s/b "quality"


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 9:45 PM
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Ned's grandfather is in the pantry, if you want him.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 9:46 PM
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32

"The poor man's libertarian" is great. I'm trying to think of some similarly discordant ones, but not having much luck so far.

The rich man's socialist.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 9:51 PM
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44 is so unbelievably hilarious that I really want to read the original. Wow. I don't think I read her when she was originally around, which is really a shame because she sounds like she would be quite the model women. After all, not everyone can claim that they, unlike 82% of Americans, are younger than 30. Now that is a real accomplishment.


Posted by: ninjaphilosopher | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 9:52 PM
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62: What do you call 25 skydiving adult humans?

Skeet.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 9:52 PM
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68: I guess I don't quite get what you don't get. He meant that true hatred of music was a true mark of criminality, and also that anyone who truly loved music couldn't be all bad. Or something like that, more or less.


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 9:52 PM
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66: My in-laws say that I have 'thieves ears'. I believe this is because my earlobes are attached or because I'm wearing my mother-in-laws diamond earrings.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 9:53 PM
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I have no idea what that could possibly mean.

It means I'm about to mug you. Now reach for the sky, M/llsy.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 9:54 PM
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If you see Ned's grandfather by the side of the road, kill him.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 9:55 PM
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I hate it when comment threads are ruined by simple things, like Ned's grandfather.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 9:57 PM
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82

What's that in the road? Two feet! A Ned('s grandfather)!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 9:58 PM
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83

82 = worst palindrome ever.


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 9:59 PM
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84

Clearly I'm not repetitive enough.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 10:02 PM
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true hatred of music was a true mark of criminality

That's the part I don't get. I've just never heard those two correlated. I guess I've also never heard anyone say "I hate music".

Well, except for Paul Westerberg. He's probably received a few citations in his lifetime, so maybe ol' grandad knew what he was talking about.

It just struck me as odd that your grandfather would encounter people who hate music often enough for it to become a memorable phrase of his.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 10:03 PM
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I hate Ned's grandfather.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 10:04 PM
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84: Is that a Jayne Mansfield tribute joke?


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 10:05 PM
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It just struck me as odd that your grandfather would encounter people who hate music often enough for it to become a memorable phrase of his.

Maybe he just assumed.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 10:08 PM
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I'm assuming he wasn't a Johnny Cash fan?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 10:10 PM
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90

||

Aaargggh! I just read Russ Douthat's article in CJR ("Live and Learn. How the Meritocratic Assembly Line Has Let Us Down") and it's absurdly bad.

I have that particular feeling of frustration that comes from watching someone begin with an argument that you're somewhat sympathetic with and proceed so badly that it makes you feel ashamed to have had any sympathy with it.

I'm willing to believe bad things about the Ivies, and I certainly do believe that too many High School students behave as careerist students, rather than explorers. But he writes like a poor man's Davd Brooks. It feels like he hasn't yet learned that if you're going to stack the deck, it's easier to get away with it if you only slip two or three cards on top of the deck, not five or six.

As the quote that a bridge friend of mine was fond of says, "I'm a reasonably man. I don't mind a few extra aces in a deck, but this is ridiculous."

|>


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 10:13 PM
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Why Ross Douhat cross the road?

He was stapled to Ned's grandfather.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 10:14 PM
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That's the part I don't get. I've just never heard those two correlated. I guess I've also never heard anyone say "I hate music".

Okay, sorry. Well, I didn't want to rehearse the quotidian details of my father's childhood, but since you insist: my father's sister Rose used to play the piano, and apparently to great (if quite localized) applause, and my father, who was jealous of the acclaim, one day, at the age of 3 or 4, put his hands over his ears in a dramatic gesture, and ran out of the room calling "I hate music!" And my grandfather, who was not up on the latest childrearing techniques, to say the least, took my father to task, saying, "For shame! Sure, it's only criminals who hate music!" and etc. And then he beat him with a stick.

No, just kidding about that last bit, of course.


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 10:17 PM
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I don't even *own* Ned's grandfather. Or so Ned's grandmother would have you believe.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 10:19 PM
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90: okay, just the combination of author and title is completely cracking me up. I need read no further!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 10:19 PM
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Why Ross Douhat cross the road?

Ross Douthat cross the road fine, why you?


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 10:19 PM
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But he writes like a poor man's Davd Brooks.

That's because he is.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 10:21 PM
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Why'd Ross Douthat


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 10:21 PM
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Why'd Ross Douthat[?]

For love, of course.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 10:21 PM
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"The thinking man's Ross Douthat"


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 10:21 PM
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The Kobe's Kobe.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 10:23 PM
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The Ross Douhat of the Steppes


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 10:23 PM
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Q: Why did the libertarian cross the road?

A: So that her housecats could drink the blood of the worker. Or dogs. Some of them have dogs.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 10:24 PM
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91, 95: Fuck me.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 10:24 PM
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103: If it's all the same to you, JP, I'd actually rather fuck your life.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 10:28 PM
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102 is pretty seriously freakin' funny.


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 10:28 PM
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105: I wrote 102 just for you.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 10:30 PM
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92: So, um, how did your dad end up making his living?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 10:30 PM
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Sorry.

90 cont'd. Would you like to know how baldly Douthat stacks the deck?

I figure that the onbious question to ask anyone complaining about some social situation is, "compared to what?" Its important to know if someone is comparing existing institutions to some other institution, a historical institution, or an imagined future improvement.

Douthat structures the article to contrast Princeton students in 1980 with, I kid you not, Ben Franklin.

Unbelievable.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 10:31 PM
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"The Meritocrat's Ross Douthat"


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 10:31 PM
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108: Ooooh! Does he use the phrase "all about the benjamins"?????


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 10:32 PM
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The Meritocratic Assembly Line of the Kali Yuga.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 10:33 PM
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So, um, how did your dad end up making his living?

And what did his ears look like?


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 10:33 PM
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110: Sadly, no. That would imply a sense of humor.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 10:33 PM
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Was Douthat even around in 1980? I'm pretty sure he wasn't.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 10:34 PM
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Benjamin Franklin was fat.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 10:34 PM
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And I'm quite sure he wasn't around in Franklin's day.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 10:34 PM
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115: JUST LIKE YO MAMA.


Posted by: OPINIONATED BEN FRANKLIN | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 10:35 PM
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114: It was a review of two separate books, one a Princeton memoir the other a book about great self-educated Americans.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 10:36 PM
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115: Your founding father is so fat...


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 10:37 PM
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Benjamin Franklin was fat.

Not compared to, say, Henry Knox. Probably compared to the average member of the Princeton class of 1980, though.

On the other hand, how many illegitimate French children has the Princeton class of 1980 sired (either individually or in aggregate)? Few, I'd wager.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 10:37 PM
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It was a review of two separate books, one a Princeton memoir the other a book about great self-educated Americans.

And what were Douthat's putative qualifications for reviewing either of those books?


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 10:38 PM
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117: BUT NOT YO-YO MA.


Posted by: OPINIONATED ME | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 10:40 PM
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And what were Douthat's putative qualifications for reviewing either of those books?

I have no idea. I can't figure out why CJR gave him the space.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 10:45 PM
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And what did his ears look like?

Like a criminal's! And not nearly as plump and pretty as Douthat's oratory orifices, of course.


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 10:51 PM
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MC's grandfather was the plainspoken person's Shakespeare.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 11:02 PM
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Our media is a mediocracy, as is our nation, and Douthat's career is the mediocratic triumph of a self-made man.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 11:04 PM
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A totally charming self-made man.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 05-11-09 11:24 PM
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And what were Douthat's putative qualifications for reviewing either of those books?

I'd bet it's solely because he wrote a Harvard memoir a couple of years ago. The Ben Franklin thing, who the hell knows. "Ross Douthat on autodidacts" is pretty funny, though.


Posted by: Matt F | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 12:48 AM
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Jackie Paisley is a rather sweet person and MUCH better than McMegan. Anyone who doesn't understand why that's so lacks humane sensibilities and is overinvested in their politics.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 7:17 AM
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Via Crooked Timber: Corruption of scientific publishing. Not to mention seriously scummy behavior by Merck, but that's not surprising. I don't publish in any Elsevier journals, but those who do might be interested in finding alternatives.
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Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 7:19 AM
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MUCH better than McMegan

At what? (Not being snarky; I'm just not sure what you mean.)


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 7:20 AM
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I'm giving a talk today at McMegan's MBA Alma Mater this afternoon. I'm thinking standards there have really gone to hell since she left.


Posted by: Kieran | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 7:25 AM
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The grammar in 132 establishes the hypothesis of the sentence.


Posted by: Kieran | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 7:26 AM
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131: not at any specific skill, just in a human sense. McMegan devotes her life to making sophistical, mean-spirited arguments for taking money from poor people, JMPP really just wants to geek out with her peeps and lead a normal life. She strikes me as pretty sweet-natured, just has that semi-autistic geek bluntness.

It's the same reason that a libertarian convention in a library basement in Omaha is an infinitely nicer human phenomenon than an editorial board meeting for Tech Central Station.

Although, in fairness, I read a McMegan column in the latest Atlantic on bankruptcy that I actually thought was pretty good, first time that's ever happened.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 8:03 AM
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I've never understood the fascination some people seem to have with her; it's not as though there aren't millions of random twits posting on the Web.

Yes, but how many of them have names that scan?


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 8:22 AM
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OK, I just went to the Atlantic site to check my memory, and up popped a McMegan post on health care which featured that perfectly typical combination of snotty superiority and either ignorance or willful misrepresentation.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 8:22 AM
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135 was me.


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 8:23 AM
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"The dingbat's Douthat"

She does kind of look like Dick Cheney! Wow. She really does, doesn't she?

I kid. JP³ seems harmless enough. She needs to be several times as crazy just to be as crazy as some of the people currently holding office and exponentially more crazy to be a crazy person on the internet.

Her name is strangely euphonious, though.


Posted by: Populuxe | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 9:14 AM
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She stayed at my blog for a while, alternating between leaving perfectly on-point funny links and comments on dating that were hugely insulting to women and men both. She inspired my post on wanting kids, and much more surprising, when she read it, she was so apologetic for angering me that she sent me real flowers to my house.

We keep in touch very occasionally. I'm glad she's happy.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 9:18 AM
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136: Her little ditty on vouchers has those same qualities. I'm closing that browser tab now.


Posted by: Bave Dee | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 9:19 AM
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The one up now that makes me want to throw things at her is The Obama Girls Aren't Like You and Me. I really try not to mention her at all, but every so often, she flies her Disingenuous Twit flag so high, that I just can't stop myself.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 9:24 AM
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Pwned.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 9:25 AM
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It's funny, I used to want to argue with a lot of her posts as wrong somehow. She's moved into a 'not even wrong' category a lot of the time; posts like the ones about the Obama girls that are about the moral implications of some situation where her factual assumptions are so complicatedly far from anything I can understand as reality that I don't even know where to start arguing.

I still read her pretty regularly -- I like having one or two reads that cover what people who disagree with me are thinking. But most of her posts lately just leave me going "Huh"?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 9:32 AM
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Look, if we agree that Sidwell Friends is better than the average DC public school, then I've pretty much already won the argument, but why, exactly, would you not want the government to pay for as many children as possible, let's say 35,000 per year, to go to Sidwell Friends? Could it be elitism? I think a system of "scholarships" or "vouchers" could work pretty well if the profit-seeking colleges themselves were not in control of it, but instead the state handed them out.


Posted by: Egan Cmardle | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 9:37 AM
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yet felt perfectly free to fling other peoples' children into it by the thousands.

According to McArdle, the only responsible political position is to advocate for the dismantling of public education. Duh! Anything else is immoral.


Posted by: m. leblanc | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 9:40 AM
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I don't even know where to start arguing.

Well, to this: "What is it about the Obama girls that enables them, nearly uniquely, to benefit from school choice?"

Their parents' income, dumbass. Just like nearly everybody else in private school.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 9:42 AM
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89: Johnny Cash is irrelevant; just because only criminals hate music does not mean that all criminals hate music.


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 9:50 AM
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144

Look, if we agree that Sidwell Friends is better than the average DC public school, then I've pretty much already won the argument ...

It's better because the students are better (which is why elite schools devote so much effort to selecting students).


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 9:52 AM
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does not mean that all criminals hate music

For instance, Jesco the Dancing Outlaw.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 9:55 AM
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Exactly, and the students are better because they're rich. Now, let's presume that we want to make everyone rich, since I'm sure liberals don't want to make everyone poor, even though that's the result of their policies. We need a society where there are tens of thousands of people qualified to go to Sidwell Friends, and only a few get in. This teaches children that life is not always fair, so they should make sure to work hard, because hard work will not be rewarded.


Posted by: Egan Cmardle | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 9:55 AM
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It's better because the students are better

An argument is circular because it's round. And argumentative.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 9:58 AM
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The students are better because they're rich?? Really?


Posted by: ninjaphilosopher | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 9:59 AM
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Quod erat demonstrandum, ninjaphilosopher.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 10:00 AM
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What, is it a coincidence?

Also, I'm not a real person, I'm a caricature of a (probably) real person's views.


Posted by: Egan Cmardle | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 10:00 AM
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153. Right, I missed that.

154. I kinda figured.


Posted by: ninjaphilosopher | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 10:02 AM
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151


An argument is circular because it's round. And argumentative

The argument is not circular. We consider schools good when their students perform well. What determines if students will perform well. Studies have repeatedly shown that if you want to predict which student bodies will perform well (within the range of conditions commonly found in the United States) you should look at the characteristics of the students (IQ, parental income, home environment etc) not the other characteristics of the school (teacher quality and pay, physical facilities etc.). You can dispute these studies if you wish but I am not making a tautological claim.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 10:18 AM
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It's not tautological, but it is oversimplified. Saying that socioeconomic class is a better predictor of outcomes than differences in schools (a) is really hard to control for, given that richer kids tend to be in schools with better conditions, and (b) is a very different claim from saying that "Holding socio-economic class constant, changes in school environment have no effects on outcomes, so there's no sense worrying about the schools."


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 10:43 AM
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Saying that socioeconomic class is a better predictor of outcomes than differences in schools (a) is really hard to control for, given that richer kids tend to be in schools with better conditions

This isn't a difficult thing to control for at all. It's just about the most classic and straighforwardly easy thing to control for. There's plenty of data in any large school distict to control for this very well. Maybe you meant to say it's "important" to control for, rather than it's "really difficult" to control for? FWIW, I think James is right that this has been studied to death and socioeconomic class is the vastly more important factor.

(In fact, your comment confuses me especially much because I know we've had threads on this very topic, in which you personally emphasized the importance of this fact, as part of why UMC parents should have no real worry about sending their kids to the local Shitty Urban Public School. SUPRs look horrible when you just look at their aggregate stats, but, for any individual kid, that's fairly meaningless.)


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:00 AM
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For once, I'm with Shearer, and you all are missing his argument. These schools don't just take every rich student who can afford them, they actually select the ones they think will do well (and are rich). That's why the students who go there do well.


Posted by: mealworm | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:01 AM
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It's better because the students are better

But if you throw in a little extra butter and some fresh-ground pepper, canned public school student will do just fine in a pinch.


Posted by: Robust McManlyPants | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:01 AM
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I get his argument, which is correct as far as it goes, but an honest examination doesn't stop there. It's a self-reinforcing circle. The private schools cherry-pick high performers, but the high performers get all manner of advantages once they are at that school that aren't available to the kids still in the SUPR.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:09 AM
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158: This isn't a difficult thing to control for at all. It's just about the most classic and straighforwardly easy thing to control for. There's plenty of data in any large school district to control for this very well.

Huh. You've got a situation where richer kids are overwhelmingly segregated from poorer kids. There's some overlap by building, but even where you've got richer and poorer kids in the same building, they're often segregated (at least at the high school level) within the school. So, I don't think there's as much easy data as you're thinking.

Even where you've got rich and poor kids in literally the same environment, that tells you how class affects results if you hold environment steady, not how environment affects results if you hold class steady. The latter question seems trickier to me, largely because figuring out which the important aspects of environment are is really tricky -- per-pupil spending is a really bad proxy.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:09 AM
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In fact, your comment confuses me especially much because I know we've had threads on this very topic, in which you personally emphasized the importance of this fact, as part of why UMC parents should have no real worry about sending their kids to the local Shitty Urban Public School.

I don't think there's rigorously reliable data on this, but my belief from what I've seen is that a kid from an educationally supportive and so forth background can thrive pretty much anyplace. That doesn't imply that the difference between a good school and a lousy school is going to be unimportant for a kid who isn't from a supportive background.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:11 AM
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What I learned at prep school was that "R" stands for "School".


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:14 AM
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a kid from an educationally supportive and so forth background can thrive pretty much anyplace

However, that kid can only take advantage of the options on the menu.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:18 AM
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Eh, maybe I'm misunderstanding the argument being made, most likely due to my refusal to read the McMegan post. I don't disagree with anything in 161-163 (except possibly the "overwhelmingly" in 162--I think "largely" would be more correct).


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:18 AM
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my refusal to read the McMegan post

I'll save you the time:

Okay, fine, I'll admit the DC voucher system hasn't produced much in the way of gains. But Obama thinks his kids are too good to go to public school. What makes them so special? Also teachers unions are evil, and liberals are going to "a special place in hell" for supporting them.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:23 AM
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166: And when I say that it's hard to control for socioeconomic class, I don't mean that I don't believe it's a huge factor, almost certainly more significant in any individual student's outcomes than school environment. I meant that it's something with enough confounding factors that you can't say with precision that it accounts for all variation in outcomes, and that school environment has no significant effect.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:25 AM
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Wait, okay, now I've read it (unfortunately), and I think 167 is unfair. Isn't she instead saying:

Okay, fine, I'll admit the DC voucher system hasn't produced much in the way of gains. But Obama presumably has his kids in an elite private school because he thinks they'll get a better education there than in a public school, and he's almost certainly right. This is confusing--why is it they benefit from private education, but the kids in the voucher program don't seem to be?

(She then adds the part about the teachers unions being evil and the "special place in hell" for liberals.)

This seems like honest-wrestling-with-a-tricky-question, not mean-spirited-glibertarioblogging.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:32 AM
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my belief from what I've seen is that a kid from an educationally supportive and so forth background can thrive pretty much anyplace.

I wonder about this. I'm perfectly willing to believe it on the primary education level, but it would seem surprising to me if this were also true on the high school level, where it would seem to be a great difference whether one's curriculum exhausted at pre-calc or included calc IV, or whether the chemistry class had access to a fully-functional lab or had to make do with diagrams in old textbooks (and that's setting aside that many high schools are even worse off.)


Posted by: Cala | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:33 AM
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This is confusing--why is it they benefit from private education, but the kids in the voucher program don't seem to be?

Okay, first, 'special place in hell' gets you to mean-spirited pretty fast. Second, it's not confusing at all. "Choice" isn't one thing -- it depends on what the options you're choosing between are -- and Sidwell Friends is not on the list of options for a poor kid getting a voucher. Her argument is "I think poor kids should get a choice between A and B. Obama thinks they should only get A. Obama's a hypocrite for buying C for his own girls," where A=public schools, B=voucher-funded-private-schools, and C=elite private schools charging far more than the cost of a voucher. That makes no sense: if you can't supply everyone with C, saying that C is enough better than other options that you can supply for everyone that it's worth buying for your own family is a failure of radical egalitarianism, certainly, but it's not hypocrisy.

That shouldn't confuse anyone for long enough to make them as mad as she seems to be.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:44 AM
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170: I'm using 'thrive' weakly; you're right that that sort of curricular difference can be life-changing.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:45 AM
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This is confusing--why is it they benefit from private education, but the kids in the voucher program don't seem to be?

wow, gee, I don't know...whatever could the difference be?

(She then adds the part about the teachers unions being evil and the "special place in hell" for liberals.)

that's not a viewpoint I agree with, but I'm certainly willing to hear her thoughtfully presented evidence for this perspective. I'm sure she's put a lot of thought into it.

This seems like honest-wrestling-with-a-tricky-question, not mean-spirited-glibertarioblogging.

So true.

You are joking, right, Brock?


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:51 AM
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pwned, of course...Unfogged would really have lost it if I had more than 30 seconds to get that piece of snark in.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:51 AM
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That shouldn't confuse anyone

I don't believe that she's confused. She's being disingenuous.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:53 AM
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171: Huh. I agree about the A/B/C confusion, although my guess is that she believes that private school outcomes generally are better than public school ones (not just at the $25,000 per year places), so is implicitly trying to make a straight A/B comparison (although is doing so inelegantly). And I didn't read any charge of hypocrisy on the part of the Obama family--she was looking at outcomes, not motivations (I think). And I doubt she meant "special place in hell" in any mean-spirited sense. That struck me as mere venting--not a sincere statement of desire.

But I don't read her regularly, at all, so maybe I'm reading with too much good faith.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:55 AM
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That would be my sense.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:58 AM
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Is there reason to think she even knows where the Obama girls go to school, other than that they're in private school? It's not in her post--she might not realize it's a $25,000 place. She might not even realize it's not a voucher-eligible private school--a B, rather than a C, so to speak.

(Without googling, I wouldn't have known, although I knew they were in private school.)


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 12:04 PM
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Is there reason to think she even knows where the Obama girls go to school,

Yes; everyone who's paying any attention at all knows. And she's getting paid to blog about this shit; if she were blogging about where the Obama girls go to school without, you know, googling to find out where they go to school, that'd be remarkably incompetent.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 12:07 PM
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These schools don't just take every rich student who can afford them, they actually select the ones they think will do well (and are rich).That's why the students who go there do well.

Well, there are different types of "elite" schools. Very few are so academically elite that they can afford to be that choosy, and those that are are not pulling from only local talent, as a rule. So while such schools do exist, and the best of them are pretty impressive (some of the residential IB programs, for example), they affect a vanishingly small percentage of students. Most of the really academically elite schools will try hard to accommodate good students who can't afford the school, too.

There are obviously far more private schools than fit this mold though. Many of the ones who empirically do pretty well on standardized tests devote an awful lot of time and effort to curriculum designed to facilitate doing well on standardized tests, and can afford to do so in ways that the average public school cannot. In this way the argument is somewhat circular.

After all, surely most children of the socio-economically well off are academically and intellectually pretty average by any reasonable measure. The whole point of many of the private schools is to provide your academically average offspring with an advantage, in the form of higher standardized test scores than they would likely otherwise achieve, and/or networking effects to help with college entrance.

Importantly, though, both inside and outside the classrooms, students at private schools will typically have a better environment in which to do this preparation, but that part at least has little to do with the students themselves.

I think there are ton of environmental factors that affect school (and other) performance, and the ones you can control inside a schoolroom are typically too small a percentage to counteract other problems that may exist.


Posted by: soup biscuit | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 12:08 PM
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Every single person in DC knows where they go to school and exactly what kind of school it is.


Posted by: bailey | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 12:09 PM
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158

(In fact, your comment confuses me especially much because I know we've had threads on this very topic, in which you personally emphasized the importance of this fact, as part of why UMC parents should have no real worry about sending their kids to the local Shitty Urban Public School. SUPRs look horrible when you just look at their aggregate stats, but, for any individual kid, that's fairly meaningless.)

While the most important factor is the kid's own background there is also an influence from the other kids (peer effects) which tends to drive performance towards the mean for the student body. So there is a reason to avoid SUPS.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 12:10 PM
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if she were blogging about where the Obama girls go to school without, you know, googling to find out where they go to school, that'd be remarkably incompetent

Except that her point didn't depend on where they went to school, other than that they went to private school. So I'm not sure how this would be incompetent. (That's of course only true if "her point" is as I said in 176--which seems to me to be the most natural reading. If "her point" were instead some implicit charge of hypocrisy on the part of the Obama family, then yeah, I suppose it matters.)


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 12:11 PM
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So there is a reason to avoid fix SUPS

Fixed.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 12:13 PM
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181 may well be true.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 12:13 PM
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some implicit charge of hypocrisy

I'd say it's fairly explicit, Brock. Particularly the last paragraph.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 12:14 PM
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If "her point" were instead some implicit charge of hypocrisy on the part of the Obama family, then yeah, I suppose it matters.

Seriously, Brock, what sin do you think she's sending Obama to hell for if not hypocrisy?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 12:15 PM
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168

... I meant that it's something with enough confounding factors that you can't say with precision that it accounts for all variation in outcomes, and that school environment has no significant effect.

Well of course you can never say something has no effect. However in the United States effects of school environment (excluding peer effects) are generally found to be at the noise level (not statistically significant).


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 12:15 PM
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'well off are academically and intellectually pretty average by any reasonable measure'

this should have been written in terms of potential.


Posted by: soup biscuit | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 12:16 PM
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188: I do not believe you can support that statement.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 12:17 PM
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184

So there is a reason to avoid fix SUPS

Fixed.

How do you fix a problem caused by the average background of the students being low?


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 12:18 PM
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There are a lot of issues on which just talking about the issue counts as a win for one political side or the other, because one side has to defend the status quo which nobody actually likes, and the other side gets to propose lots of great-sounding hypothetical scenarios that will never happen. "School choice" is one of these issues. Republican pundits want it to be talked about as much as possible.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 12:19 PM
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How do you fix a problem caused by the average background of the students being low?

Improve the (relevant aspects of the) background? (Not that I believe it is as simple an effect as you seem to think it is)


Posted by: soup biscuit | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 12:20 PM
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165

However, that kid can only take advantage of the options on the menu

However said menu generally includes learning things on your own.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 12:21 PM
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Seriously, Brock, what sin do you think she's sending Obama to hell for if not hypocrisy?

Betraying our nation's most helpless children for the benefit of a sullen and recalcitrant teacher's union.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 12:21 PM
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How do you fix a problem caused by the average background of the students being low?

What soup said. You certainly don't fix it by abandoning/weakening the system.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 12:23 PM
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193


Improve the (relevant aspects of the) background? (Not that I believe it is as simple an effect as you seem to think it is)

But that is totally out of the control of SUPSs. They can't magically change poor parents into middle class parents.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 12:24 PM
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195: But it's only betrayal (rather than innocent error) if he's insincere about believing vouchers don't work. And the only evidence of his insincerity is sending his kids to Sidwell. What do you think his kids are doing in the post at all other than as an accusation of hypocrisy?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 12:26 PM
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197: It is within the control of the government generally: income transfer is a perfectly practical means of making poor people non-poor. The devil is in the details, but it's not as if that's outside the realm of possible policy interventions.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 12:28 PM
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What do you think his kids are doing in the post at all

So she can claim she supports diversity.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 12:29 PM
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198: See 169. Relevant portion: "But Obama presumably has his kids in an elite private school because he thinks they'll get a better education there than in a public school, and he's almost certainly right. This is confusing--why is it they benefit from private education, but the kids in the voucher program don't seem to be?"


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 12:29 PM
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197: see school lunch programs, etc. Not to say that such efforts have been completely successful, mind

you can't turn poor parents into middle class parents, true.

What you can (and should do) is try and identify what parts of the poor(er) childrens environment are most damaging to academic performance and future success. And you should try and change those. There is no good reason that education money cannot be used for this.

The absolute worst thing you can do is give added educational mobility to the families who already have decent outcome expectations at the expense of those who do not. Which is what most voucher programs seem to amount to.


Posted by: soup biscuit | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 12:29 PM
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201: You're kidding, right? That's sarcasm, Brock. If she meant it straightforwardly, she wouldn't have anything to be angry with Obama about. She's claiming to be angry because she doesn't believe him.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 12:32 PM
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Circle Eight: Bolgia Six - lovely lead-lined cloaks.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 12:37 PM
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203: that's my language, not hers. I don't understand what you think she "doesn't believe him" about? She seems mad at him for supporting the (in her view, obviously failing) public schools, not for hypocrisy. She seems, separately, genuinely perplexed by why the voucher schools aren't producing better results, since everyone "knows" private schools are better--that's why so many people who can afford to do so send their children there, including the Obamas. She's asking: why do they produce "better" results when parents pay the bill, but not when the government pays the bill? I don't agree with all her assumptions, but this seems like a geniune question, not bad faith.

And no, I'm not kidding. It seems that a lot of people here are using a maximally uncharitable reading of her post. Maybe that's justified based on other posts, I don't know--I scrolled through the main page and didn't see anything awful (although a lot of the posts were too long for me to read completely, since I'm not actually all that interested).


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 12:41 PM
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She thinks that voucher schools do produce better results. That's why she supports them.

Obama's budget cuts funding for them on the grounds that they don't produce better results. (A) If he's right, that's sensible, and there's no reason to be mad at him. (B) If he's wrong, but believes that school vouchers don't produce better results, he's misguided but innocent, and there's no reason to be mad at him, only to persuade him. (C) If he's wrong and insincere, and wants to cut funding for vouchers despite believing that they do produce better results because he's serving the interests of teacher's unions rather than students, he's a bad man, and she should be mad at him.

She says that she doesn't understand why private schools benefit the Obama girls and not the recipients of vouchers. This is sarcasm -- she is saying that she believes both the Obama girls and the recipients of vouchers would benefit similarly from attending private schools, and is taking the fact that Obama is sending his girls to private schools as evidence for the fact that he believes it too -- we're in situation (C). You can tell that this is what's going on, because she's mad at him -- being mad in case (A) or (B) wouldn't make sense.

I'm not expecting to convince you here, but your reading is really weird.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 12:52 PM
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Again, DC resident here, but what's really frustrating about MM's post is how little it reflects what's actually going on in DC.

She fetishizes "school choice," but we have a ton of school choice here within the public system. We have specialized elementary schools, specialized high schools, and a ton of public charter schools. The rules of setting up charter schools seems to be pretty liberal. In fact, a lot of private schools that accepted vouchers have converted themselves into public charter schools.

Moreover, there is not a public clamor here for the voucher program. Sure, the small number of families who participate in it want it to continue, but what most people here want are good public schools, not vouchers.

The big talking point on the conservative/libertarian blogs is that this is an example of Obama caving to the union. That is not the case at all. The WTU is extremely weak. It is not that far removed from a huge embezzlement scandal that left it bankrupt and sent a lot of officials to prison. It is so weak that its parent (ATF) has had to step in to do a lot of the negotiating on salary issues -- Rhee's proposal to end tenure in exchange for higher salaries. And those salary issues are what the union really cares about, not this paltry voucher program.

And McMegan should know all of this. She lives in DC. There is a much more interesting story to tell here, but she is too lacking in either curiosity or honesty (or both!) to tell it.


Posted by: bailey | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 12:52 PM
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181
Every single person in DC knows where they go to school and exactly what kind of school it is.

To be fair, I know the name of the school but nothing else about it. I infer its quality (what kind of school it is) only from the fact that the Obama girls are going there in the first place. (But OTOH, I work in DC but don't actually live here.)

As a political blogger, McArdle would have to be very stupid and incompetent to not even know the name and infer as much as I did. This is a possibility we can't rule out, and stupidity is a more charitable assumption than malice so we should assume it to be the case until we find evidence that she's actually a deliberate liar, so let's just compromise and call her an idiot.

It seems that a lot of people here are using a maximally uncharitable reading of her post. Maybe that's justified based on other posts, I don't know--

Many peoples' opinions of Megan McArdle were solidified by a 2003 post, when she was going by Jane Galt, when she said she was laughing at anti-war protesters and would "laugh even harder" if someone attacked them with a two-by-four. It's an unusually blunt formulation, but wholly typical of her views.

(Her explanation years later was that she was only talking about violent protestors or rioters, but that's obviously crap. She'd apply the two-by-four in a "pre-emptive manner.")


Posted by: Cyrus | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 12:59 PM
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206: where do you get "She thinks that voucher schools do produce better results. That's why she supports them."?

Here's what her post says:

I'm willing to countenance the possibility that Barack Obama genuinely believes that the DC voucher program is not helping the students who participate--indeed, I think the most hard-core voucher advocate would have to admit that its modest gains are not what we had hoped.

That reads to me like an acknowledgment that vouchers in DC aren't performing as well as she's hoped. I'd rewrite your sentence as "She thinks that voucher schools should (theoretically) produce better results. That's why, despite mixed empirical results, she supports them."

Oddly, though, I don't disagree that she probably thinks we're in situation (C). So I have no idea why we're arguing about this. Her post just struck me as not especially mean-spirited or unreasonable.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 1:01 PM
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208: I'm familiar with the long history--I read her for a while (as Jane Galt), but stopped years ago because I got bored. (Hers was one of the first blogs I ever read, actually.) And there have been several long threads here on various of her inanities. So I don't know why I'm defending her. This post just didn't seem that bad to me. Much less bad than most people here seem to think.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 1:07 PM
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Here's a link to that explanation. Just to be fair. I tend to be self-righteous about politics, which is unusual only in that I don't have a personal stake in the issue. I wasn't one of those protestors she laughed at the thought of assaulting (the people who were right about the war, remember) and AFAIK I personally don't know anyone who was. And on the other hand I understand that at least a couple front-page posters here are friends of hers, so she apparently has some good points.


Posted by: Cyrus | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 1:07 PM
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It says that she's willing to countenance the possibility that that's what "Barack Obama genuinely believes", Brock. She doesn't say anything implying that she herself thinks it's true.

And the rest of the post makes it clear that she's being sarcastic about what she thinks Obama believes.

Oddly, though, I don't disagree that she probably thinks we're in situation (C).

Okay, situation C is the one where Obama's a hypocrite. If the post led you to believe that she thinks Obama's a hypocrite, doesn't that suggest that it's intended to convey that message?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 1:08 PM
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190

I do not believe you can support that statement

Here is an example. This is a pay article which I can't access but the abstract says:

The relationship between school resources and student achievement has been controversial, in large part because it calls into question a variety of traditional policy approaches. This article reviews the available educational production literature, updating previous summaries. The close to 400 studies of student achievement demonstrate that there is not a strong or consistent relationship between student performance and school resources, at least after variations in family inputs are taken into account. These results are also reconciled with meta-analytic approaches and with other investigations on how school resources affect labor market outcomes. Simple resource policies hold little hope for improving student outcomes.

It is very hard to confidently detect small effects when large effects are present in an uncontrolled way as it is very difficult to be sure you have correctly removed the large effects.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 1:10 PM
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212: nothing about situation (C) requires hypocrisy. Just wrong about vouchers, and insincere about why he really opposes them.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 1:11 PM
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And on the other hand I understand that at least a couple front-page posters here are friends of hers, so she apparently has some good points.

The one time I met her (UnfoggedDCon 2), she was very pleasant and friendly in person. I'm sure she's lovely to hang out with on a personal level, if you can stay off politics.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 1:12 PM
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214: You're drawing a fine distinction between insincerity and hypocrisy that I'm not sure I can follow. Also, if he's insincere about his stated belief that voucher-funded access to private schools wouldn't benefit DC kids generally, doesn't that make him a hypocrite for sending his kids to private school?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 1:14 PM
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Wait a sec, back to the OP: JPPP is ensign red skirt? who knew!


Posted by: soup biscuit | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 1:17 PM
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199

It is within the control of the government generally: income transfer is a perfectly practical means of making poor people non-poor. The devil is in the details, but it's not as if that's outside the realm of possible policy interventions.

This is silly. It is not primarily lack of money which makes poor people bad parents. It is cultural factors like fewer marriages, more crime, less respect for education and other middle class values etc. Giving poor people money won't change these factors.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 1:17 PM
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I'm sincerely hoping that encouraging Rah to comment more isn't going to result in Robust commenting less

Sorry, I forgot to address this earlier. You see, we take turns. One of us comments while the other tries to write a persuasive argument that since we are childless cat-owners, and thus inherently morally superior to the rest of you breeding fucks, the best path forward is socialized veterinarian medicine.


Posted by: Robust McManlyPants | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 1:18 PM
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Apologies for touting my own comments, but here is the truly important distinction between McMegan and JP3.

Also in that thread: Gonerill (in contradiction to his 6 above) declares JP3 "the even stupider man's Megan McArdle".


Posted by: Knecht Ruprecht | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 1:21 PM
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208

Many peoples' opinions of Megan McArdle were solidified by a 2003 post, when she was going by Jane Galt, when she said she was laughing at anti-war protesters and would "laugh even harder" if someone attacked them with a two-by-four. It's an unusually blunt formulation, but wholly typical of her views.

Judging people by the stupidest thing they ever said doesn't make much sense unless you are just looking for an excuse to ignore them. (I am not claiming this is actually the stupidest thing she ever said or that you said it was).


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 1:23 PM
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socialized veterinarian medicine

By which we mean medical care for veterinarians, of course, I guess.


Posted by: Robust McManlyPants | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 1:23 PM
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The problem isn't that people say stupid things (hello, unfogged). It's when they rarely or never say smart things to counterbalance them.


Posted by: soup biscuit | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 1:24 PM
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222: someone gets to go first, I guess.


Posted by: soup biscuit | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 1:24 PM
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Judging people by the stupidest thing they ever said doesn't make much sense

Thanks for the reminder. It helped me put 218 in its proper context.


Posted by: Knecht Ruprecht | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 1:26 PM
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218: Your reaction isn't particularly unreasonable, but I think (I'd need to go googling, or if you're interested you could do the research yourself) that income support programs are internationally associated with lower levels of the sort of social pathology we associate with poverty. My impression is that there's fairly strong research showing that poor people are largely socially dysfunctional because they lack money, rather than the reverse.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 1:28 PM
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213: I should have said "support convincingly" -- links to abstracts of papers you haven't read conducting meta-analyses of other papers you haven't read don't do much for me.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 1:33 PM
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I can't get worked up about the 2x4 thing. That's just standard internet hyperbole.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 1:36 PM
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226: that, and environmental issues strongly correlated with lacking money, iirc.


Posted by: soup biscuit | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 1:36 PM
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223

The problem isn't that people say stupid things (hello, unfogged). It's when they rarely or never say smart things to counterbalance them.

This is indeed a problem with McArdle. I guess this illustrates the first mover advantage in blogging.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 1:38 PM
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I keep reading the title of this post as Libertarian Insurrection.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 1:50 PM
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226

... My impression is that there's fairly strong research showing that poor people are largely socially dysfunctional because they lack money, rather than the reverse.

I doubt this. And how do poor Asian kids fit in?


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 1:52 PM
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the first mover advantage in blogging

This is huge. I can't think of anyone who's filtered up to a position of influence among the political blogs I read who started blogging in the last four or five years, unless they began blogging at an already established institutional site.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 1:54 PM
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227

I should have said "support convincingly" -- links to abstracts of papers you haven't read conducting meta-analyses of other papers you haven't read don't do much for me.

So what would you find convincing? Do you think there is convincing evidence the other way?


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 1:54 PM
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233: Glenn Greenwald?


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 1:56 PM
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235: Huh. I thought Greenwald had been around longer but no, apparently he started blogging in late 2005. Weird.


Posted by: Cyrus | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 2:04 PM
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233: Counterexample: Ross Douthat


Posted by: KR | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 2:06 PM
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234: To be persuaded by research that school environment is unimportant, I'd want research that compared a broad spectrum of schools across a fairly large number of measures of school environment -- physical plant, teacher qualifications, teacher pay, curriculum, extracurriculars, measures of safety and violence in the school, there's probably more that I haven't thought of -- and found that none of them had a detectable effect on the performance of students after controlling for measures of socioeconomic class. I haven't seen that research.

I have seen research showing that specific programs like KIPP do affect student performance -- I'm not familiar with much broad research on the same point, but it seems awfully plausible to me, and to everyone who selects a school for their children based on school environment.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 2:08 PM
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233, 237: Nate Silver, Greenwald (wasn't he that recent? I think so.), Crooks and Liars, FDL.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 2:08 PM
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Okay, there are counterexamples. But generally, that's the pattern.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 2:09 PM
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Crooks and Liars has been around forever.


Posted by: foolishmortal | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 2:10 PM
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I know a lot about the topics McMegan posts about, and she regularly makes absurd claims, that either reflect an active desire to be disingenuous or a total failure to do her homework on the issue. I could give numerous examples, but let's not bore everyone. I think I find the "this-is-obvious-and-others-are-ignorant" tone in which she retails these whoppers just as irritating as the actual bullshit assertions she makes. It's a particularly grating rhetorical strategy that's typical of certain beltway types.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 2:11 PM
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a persuasive argument that since we are childless cat-owners, and thus inherently morally superior

As a catless child-owner, I must point out that Rory doesn't make me sneeze or make my eyes itch. And she almost never leaves dead rodents at my doorstep.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 2:14 PM
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243: But will she walk through a shit-filled box, then climb on your lap? ADVANTAGE KITTY!


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 2:16 PM
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Didn't FDL get started around the time the Scooter Libby case broke? That's 2005.

Nate Silver did an admirable job applying a lot of labor, numeracy, and savvy to create a brand ex nihilo; he's been even more impressive following up with a variety of content to keep himself relevant, without dropping the original 538-style analysis that made the brand.

In some ways more impressive than Greenwald, who remains a (valuable, thoughtful, concise) two-trick pony. I think it's still possible to break in by owning a topic (that's what Nate did, after all); what's proved harder is broadening one's appeal without blending in to the background noise of hundreds of undifferentiated political blahgs.

At any rate, it's undeniable that a mediocre early mover (I'd say mid-2003 or earlier) had a much better chance of achieving success than a pretty good post-Kerry blogger does.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 2:22 PM
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And she almost never leaves dead rodents at my doorstep.

Whichever one of my kids turns into a good mouser gets first dibs in the will.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 2:23 PM
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It is not primarily lack of money which makes poor people bad parents. It is cultural factors like fewer marriages, more crime, less respect for education and other middle class values etc.

Setting aside cases of extreme neglect or abuse, whatever experiences siblings share by growing up in the same home in a given culture make little or no difference to the kind of people they turn into. Specific skills like reading and playing a musical instrument, of course, can be imparted by parents, and parents obviously affect their children's happiness and the quality of family life. But they don't seem to determine their children's intellects, tastes, and personalities in the long run.

Taking that seriously, I would be hesitant to swing around terms like "bad parents" and "good parents". It probably doesn't make much of a difference in the long run unless you are a "Romanian-orphanage-bad parent".


Posted by: lemmy caution | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 2:30 PM
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"Romanian-orphanage-bad parent".

[Winces, ducks, flees.]


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 2:32 PM
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247: RACIST


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 2:32 PM
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238

... but it seems awfully plausible to me, and to everyone who selects a school for their children based on school environment

But the most important part of the school environment is the other kids.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 2:34 PM
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250: But the most important part of the school environment is the other kids.
Truly James, the children are our future.


Posted by: minneapolitan | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 2:36 PM
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247

Taking that seriously, I would be hesitant to swing around terms like "bad parents" and "good parents". It probably doesn't make much of a difference in the long run unless you are a "Romanian-orphanage-bad parent".

So it is better to blame genes?


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 2:36 PM
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No, James. It is better to blame the children themselves. Willful little curs.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 2:40 PM
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(Except mine, of course, who is perfect in every way.)


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 2:41 PM
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Truly James, the children are our future.

Unfortunately, most American children are horrible and degenerate.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 2:41 PM
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Unfortunately, most American children are horrible and degenerate.

Except mine, of course, who is perfect in every way.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 2:42 PM
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I think I find the "this-is-obvious-and-others-are-ignorant" tone in which she retails these whoppers just as irritating as the actual bullshit assertions she makes. It's a particularly grating rhetorical strategy that's typical of certain beltway types characteristic of The Economist and undoubtedly rubbed off on McMegan.

Where McMegan falls down in relation to her Economist peers is that she knows a bit less and takes less care to pick sufficiently obscure topics to bloviate about. Thus, her bullshit is transparent to a larger slice of the population.


Posted by: KR | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 2:42 PM
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well sure, but consider the source.


Posted by: soup biscuit | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 2:43 PM
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So it is better to blame genes?

It's best to blame skin color.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 2:43 PM
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258 probably, but not certainly, made more sense if I hadn't typed it before refreshing. Now I'll leave it to you to sort out what comment it was supposed to respond to.


Posted by: soup biscuit | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 2:44 PM
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257: characteristic of The Economist and undoubtedly rubbed off on McMegan.

I'm pretty sure she was full of shit in a similar way when she was doing her independent blogging gig.


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 2:44 PM
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Thus, her bullshit is transparent to a larger slice of the population.

I fear that this isn't actually true.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 2:44 PM
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253

No, James. It is better to blame the children themselves. Willful little curs.

But are they bad because of nature or nurture?


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 2:45 PM
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Larger can still be pretty small.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 2:45 PM
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260: 1!


Posted by: Unpronounceable Awl | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 2:45 PM
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263: Original sin. I keep telling you.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 2:46 PM
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256: "Perfect in every way" encompasses "perfectly horrible and degenerate," though.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 2:49 PM
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266

Original sin. I keep telling you

In other words God doesn't like them? If so more spending on education probably isn't going to help.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 2:50 PM
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But are they bad because of nature or nurture?

Because of free will.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 2:51 PM
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267: It does, doesn't it? I couldn't be prouder.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 2:52 PM
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258 plainly to 254.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 2:53 PM
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If we breed Rory and Keegan, we could start our race of uber-beings and rule the world, Di.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 2:55 PM
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||

I'm quite irrationally pleased to get credit for mentioning "On Being The Right Size" to Henry Abbott of truehoop.

But I am slightly surprised that, with the comment that a 60ft tall man wouldn't be able to walk bouncing around for the last couple of days, nobody had mentioned it prior.

Truly the education system in this country has gone downhill.

|>


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 3:00 PM
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269

Because of free will.

That doesn't really explain why poor kids do worse than rich kids in school.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 3:02 PM
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274: It does if poor people are BAD!


Posted by: mcmc | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 3:06 PM
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274: It's a little-known fact of Shearer's biography that he was the original inspiration for Mr. Logic.


Posted by: Knecht Ruprecht | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 3:09 PM
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I'm quite irrationally pleased to get credit for mentioning "On Being The Right Size" to Henry Abbott of truehoop.
But I am slightly surprised that, with the comment that a 60ft tall man wouldn't be able to walk bouncing around for the last couple of days, nobody had mentioned it prior.
Truly the education system in this country has gone downhill.

Really, the foundational text here is Galileo's Two New Sciences


Posted by: beamish | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 3:09 PM
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Come on--poor people aren't "bad", mcmc. They only look bad in comparison to rich people, who are unusually good.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 3:09 PM
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To his clubfooted child said Lord Stipple,
As he poured his post-prandial tipple,
"Your mother's behaviour
Gave pain to Our Saviour,
And that's why He made you a cripple."


Posted by: Edward Gorey | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 3:11 PM
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Really, the foundational text here is Galileo's Two New Sciences

There you go, proving my shallowness. I wouldn't have thought of that.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 3:11 PM
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274: That doesn't really explain why poor kids do worse than rich kids in school

Poor kids' schools are old
Old buildings need to be restored
The Restoration put King Charles II on the throne
King Charles II had a mistress named Nell Gwyn
Nell Gwyn was a wanton
And that's why poor kids are always wantin' more money for education


Posted by: minneapolitan | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 3:12 PM
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273: A rat is killed, a man is broken, a horse splashes.

This is an astonishingly evocative line for an essay on something as dry as the square-cube law; it's stuck in my head since the first time I saw it.

Although for the first time I find myself thinking, isn't the first bit wrong? I thought the line between animals for whom terminal velocity (say, at ordinary sea level conditions) was survivable or not was about cat size -- that a rat could live through a fall from any height, just like a mouse.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 3:19 PM
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I would hope so. I'm Rat year myself, so I take stuff about dropping rats kinda personal.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 3:26 PM
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I, myself, am a Pig.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 3:27 PM
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What if the Giant Pope and Giant Pagan have titanium bones? Huh? What then?


Posted by: mcmc | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 3:27 PM
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This is an astonishingly evocative line for an essay on something as dry as the square-cube law; it's stuck in my head since the first time I saw it.

Me too, I think I first saw it in middle school.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 3:27 PM
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I fully expected 279 to end in swipple.


Posted by: di kotimy | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 3:27 PM
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274: because they choose to do poorly in school just like they choose to stay poor. I didn't want to spell it out so directly, but there it is.


Posted by: di kotimy | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 3:31 PM
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Speaking of "On Being The Right Size" I see that I can now find online another essay that I remember from the same time period in my life (probably via my dad)).

The Student, the Fish, and Agassiz by the Student

"Take this fish," he said, "and look at it; we call it a Haemulon; by and by I will ask what you have seen."

With that he left me, but in a moment returned with explicit instructions as to the care of the object entrusted to me.

"No man is fit to be a naturalist," said he, "who does not know how to take care of specimens."

I was to keep the fish before me in a tin tray, and occasionally moisten the surface with alcohol from the jar, always taking care to replace the stopper tightly. Those were not the days of ground glass stoppers, and elegantly shaped exhibition jars; all the old students will recall the huge, neckless glass bottles with their leaky, wax-besmeared corks, half-eaten by insects and begrimed with cellar dust. Entomology was a cleaner science than ichthyology, but the example of the professor who had unhesitatingly plunged to the bottom of the jar to produce the fish was infectious; and though this alcohol had "a very ancient and fish-like smell," I really dared not show any aversion within these sacred precincts, and treated the alcohol as though it were pure water. Still I was conscious of a passing feeling of disappointment, for gazing at a fish did not commend itself to an ardent entomologist. My friends at home, too, were annoyed, when they discovered that no amount of eau de cologne would drown the perfume which haunted me like a shadow.

...

It's very memorable as well.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 3:33 PM
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I, myself, am a Pig.

Smart, sunburns easily, likes truffles and fresh straw?


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 3:35 PM
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sunburns easily

This is a literally sore spot right now -- Sunday was chilly, so I wasn't thinking about sunburn while I watched Sally's Little League game. I am bright pink and peeling still.

(Sally, having inherited her father's tanning skills, is fine.)


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 3:38 PM
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LizardBreath, does your unfogged email address work or should I use a different one?


Posted by: Cecily | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 3:38 PM
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272: The idea both frightens and excites me. Do you think the little ubergrandkin will show us mercy?


Posted by: di kotimy | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 3:38 PM
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Smart, sunburns easily, likes truffles and fresh straw?

SSPL.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 3:40 PM
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Use ElizardB@hotmail.com, if you would.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 3:40 PM
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Sally is not Pig year, that I remember. That's why she didn't sunburn.

If I'm remembering right, she's Tiger? Rabbit? No one ever talks about tigers getting sunburned.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 3:41 PM
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Upon closer reading, the version linked in 289 is not exactly the version I remember. But it is nevertheless well worth reading.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 3:42 PM
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If we breed Rory and Keegan, we could start our race of uber-beings and rule the world, Di launch the most outrageous hardcore erotic bakery the world has ever known.


Posted by: Knecht Ruprecht | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 3:45 PM
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295 thanks!


Posted by: Cecily | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 3:45 PM
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296: She is a Rabbit, and I call her "rabbit". I also call Newt (technically a Snake) "rabbit" as well -- I think I started from a Chinese astrology basis, but it's turned into a generic term for "one of my children".


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 3:49 PM
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I call my baby sister "monkey", because she's a Monkey and because she used to climb me like a palm tree. She's taller than me now, but we haven't changed our greeting of her leaping into my arms. Good thing I'm lifting.

I call groups of children "ducklings", mostly to convey that they should follow behind me in a line.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 3:52 PM
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I've told this one several times already, but...

Second grade. Rory comes home from school. What did you learn today, Sweetie? "I shouldn't marry a cock!" she says proudly. Coffee shoots from my nostrils. Well, yes, true, but... What now? "I shouldn't marry a cock," she repeats. And then pulls out a Chinese zodiak thing. "See? I'm year of the rabbit, so I shouldn't marry a cock."

(I'm an ox, which I think just means I shouldn't marry.)


Posted by: di kotimy | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 3:53 PM
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And that you like to pull plows or wagons. And graze.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 3:59 PM
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It should come as no surprise that I am Year of the Monkey.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 4:05 PM
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The idea that oxen "like" to pull wagons and plows is just another myth perpetuated to salve the guilty consciences of those who would force our labors.


Posted by: di kotimy | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 4:06 PM
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You know, I have this same conversation with a lot of Oxen who aren't ready to accept their inner natures.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 4:19 PM
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I am a Dragon.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 4:26 PM
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I bet you feel no innate drive to pull plows and wagons. This zodiac stuff works great once you get the hang of it.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 4:29 PM
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You know, I have this same conversation with a lot of Oxen who aren't ready to accept their inner natures.

They just don't have the balls.



Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 4:31 PM
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I bet you feel no innate drive to pull plows and wagons.

No, but neither am I a born leader or master of ceremonies.



Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 4:34 PM
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But would you like to swoop through the air, flaming stuff and stealing gold?


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 4:37 PM
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Per 273, dragons can't fly.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 4:40 PM
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No, not really.

I mean I wouldn't mind it occasionally, but I'm more of the "stay curled up in the cave and peruse ancient tomes" type.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 4:41 PM
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I suppose you are going to say that they don't breathe fire either.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 4:41 PM
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I'm a goat. I do like to eat junk.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 4:43 PM
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Why not?


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 4:43 PM
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312: We're mythical. If we say fly, we fly.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 4:46 PM
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I bet you feel no innate drive to pull plows and wagons.

Because I am horrible and degenerate, I embrace the zodiak tradition in which I am a fis. Off to swim!


Posted by: di kotimy | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 4:52 PM
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I'm a sheep in Chinese AND degenerate western astrology. Do I get a prize?


Posted by: Cecily | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 4:57 PM
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I would think the prize would be having such a peaceful and well-aligned inner nature. Who could want more?

Do you dislike dogs that nip at you and try to force you into a different pasture?


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 5:02 PM
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Do you dislike when rough handlers grab you and steal your warm fuzzy sweater?


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 5:02 PM
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God, I hate them.


Posted by: Cecily | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 5:05 PM
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(dogs and handlers. I do love Scottish men though...)


Posted by: Cecily | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 5:05 PM
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In degenerate western astrology, I'm the one who's like a horse from the waist down. Laydeez.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 5:06 PM
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I am a lion, as are my two children. Their father is a fish. He occasionally feels a little outnumbered.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 5:08 PM
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You see? This zodiac stuff is infallible.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 5:09 PM
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I'm a cribby crabby crab in the one and a nice soft rabbit in the other.


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 5:11 PM
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324: Likewise, but I find that the bow-and-arrow thing is a turn-off.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 5:13 PM
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Their father is a fish. He occasionally feels a little outnumbered.

My mother is a fish.


Posted by: Vardaman | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 5:37 PM
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I'd forgotten my Chinese astrology details. I'm a Dragon. Apparently I am not compatible with Dogs, but am with Monkeys.

Several years ago I spent some time looking into this stuff, but you'd never know it from what I retained.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 6:20 PM
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You're in luck, parsimon. I'm a Monkey.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 6:53 PM
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That's in Chinese astrology. In real life, I'm actually a dog. On the Internet. Really, I'm the dog on the Internet. That New Yorker cartoon? That's me.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 6:57 PM
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I'm a sheep in Chinese AND degenerate western astrology

Huh, so am I.


Posted by: CJB | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 6:58 PM
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What if the Giant Pope and Giant Pagan have titanium bones? Huh? What then?

Then great art ensues, but I never get any work done ever again.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 7:30 PM
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I'm a dragon, and I only remember that because back when I read up on it, Chinese astrology seemed to bear at least some vague resemblance to my actual personality, as opposed to the western zodiac. The only thing true about the latter is that I'm a homebody.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 7:43 PM
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I'm also a dragon, but I don't seem to fit the dragon profile at all.


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 7:47 PM
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Where are you getting the dragon profile from, MC? There are too many shitloads of places to look at online, and I've lost or badly labelled whatever ones I have.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 8:02 PM
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I'm a ram and a rabbit, but I'm also a Red Moon, and more precisely a Red Galactic Moon, which sounds infinitely cooler:

I Harmonize in order to Purify
Modeling Flow
I seal the Process of Universal Water
With the Galactic tone of Integrity
I am guided by the power of Space

... ladies.


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 8:20 PM
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337: Just a random website. I don't know anything about the profile, really, other than what I quickly read (at a perhaps unreliable site).

OT: Has anyone else read excerpts from the transcript of Flight 3407's final moments? Holy crap.


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 8:35 PM
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Three Canadian comments in a row! Suck it, capitalist running dawgs!


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 8:40 PM
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I have no earthly idea why I did that.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 8:41 PM
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338: This is sounding familiar, yes. From the tortuga site:

Blue Galactic Eagle:

I Harmonize in order to Create
Modeling Mind
I seal the Output of Vision
With the Galactic tone of Integrity
I am guided by the power of Self-generation

--

Believe it or not, I find this stuff a little painful.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 8:41 PM
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Just a random website. I don't know anything about the profile, really, other than what I quickly read (at a perhaps unreliable site).

If there's one thing that the rational empiricist in me can't stand, it's fly-by-night websites peddling inaccurate or obsolete astrological profiles.


Posted by: pain perdu | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 8:41 PM
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I'm a ram and a rabbit

...laydeez.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 8:42 PM
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Believe it or not, I find this stuff a little painful.

I believe it.


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 8:43 PM
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345: It occurred to me that that could be read in two ways. I meant it (hence the "believe it or not"): I find it difficult to hear a theory about what I might or could or should be. An eagle. But that's not the only place I hear it. I'm not doing as good a job at it as I'd like.

I do very much like birds of prey.

It's okay if people think it's ridiculous. I'm not exactly a strong adherent, but I find it worthwhile to consider.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 8:50 PM
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I'm a tiger and Rah is a monkey. We both pretty much fit our signs to a tee. In degenerate Western astrology I'm constantly weighing things and Rah is the twins. Fittingly, due to a technicality, Rah has two birthdays.


Posted by: Robust McManlyPants | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 8:56 PM
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343: Here you go, officialastrology.com.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 8:59 PM
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I don't even know what being a Monkey is supposed to signify, but I am pretty much a walking, talking Sagittarius stereotype.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 9:02 PM
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You know, it's not just the 12 animals. There's also the 5 elements, for a 60 year cycle. Earth Dog.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 9:04 PM
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346: Oh, I thought you just meant the accompanying poems, which actually are sort of painful.

Yeah, that's cool. Eagle from other sources... native spirituality-wise? That would be intriguing.

Astrology can be mildly diverting, though I don't really take it that seriously. My Mayan star-sign predicts that I should be laid back... and I am! My Western sign predicts that I should be a bit stubborn... and I'm that, too! My Chinese sign says that I'm calm and non-confrontational... which is also mostly true, except when it's not! The thing that astrology works on is that we're liable to be struck by the things that are right and filter out the contrary data as being no fun.


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 9:12 PM
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I am pretty much a walking, talking Sagittarius stereotype

Me too. Or I was in high school. Or maybe I just agreed with my girlfriend, who was into astrology, that I was. Would a Sagittarius exchange polite lies for sex?


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 9:13 PM
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Alas, the Wood Rabbit description I just found sounds like a lovely person, but one with very little resemblance to me. "They are cautious, conservative, bright, and have a good head for business. Supremely pleasant to have around, these affectionate, naturally shy peacemakers seldom ever lose their temper. They sometimes appear to be singing the blues because of a natural but short-lived tendency towards despondency. Rabbits always inspire deep admiration and trust."


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 9:18 PM
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I had never seen the apology/explanation that Cyrus linked in 211. This has got to be the standout creepy bit though:

It's not funny even when the rioter is a total scumwrangler who is deliberately wreaking mayhem--any more than it is ever funny when a thoroughly repulsive criminal gets raped in prison. To the extent that either the state or private citizens are forced to use violence to prevent violence, it should always be more-in-sorrow-than-in-anger.

Talk about needing an editor. Whose brain jumps right from prison rape to "private citizens" being "forced" to "use violence to prevent violence"?

Really distasteful. And if I were standing in front of her right this minute, I'd probably say that more harshly.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 9:20 PM
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351: The accompanying poems are definitely painful, though they make me smile.

I don't know anything about native spirituality, wouldn't mind knowing something, but wouldn't know where to begin; it's not exactly homogeneous. I have a very dear close friend who talked to me about the eagle thing some time ago, not in the context of astrology. He's someone I trust.

The thing that astrology works on is that we're liable to be struck by the things that are right and filter out the contrary data as being no fun.

Certainly! It's not to be predictive; I think it's to be descriptive, and/or aspirational. On that level I don't have a problem. Maybe I just treat it as another fairly complex idea I'm willing to entertain. I don't read philosophy with an eye toward believing it, but just toward getting inside its head, and seeing where it takes me. Same thing here. That's one reason I'm more interested in Mayan astrology than I am in western; the latter doesn't do a damn thing for me. Not that I've given it much of a chance.

Actually, non-western astology having to do with interactions between people of different sorts is most interesting. I have seen some amazing treatments of people (whether coworkers, lovers, partners in some other way) that were really right on.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 9:28 PM
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349:but I am pretty much a walking, talking Sagittarius stereotype.

As I am an ENTP... oops, never mind.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 9:32 PM
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Would a Sagittarius exchange polite lies for sex?

Of course they would, you sexy, sexy man.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 9:33 PM
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354: The entire thing is really distasteful. McMegan admitting it was a stupid thing to write would have been meaningful progress only if she wasn't still trying to claim it was a response to a "credible" rumour of imminent rioting, and wasn't still trying to malign and dismiss people who hold it and attitudes like it against her.


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 9:36 PM
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Every [heterosexual male] Sagittarian I've known has been devilish with teh women.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 9:36 PM
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"Devilish" sounds so judgmental. Human-horse hybrids need love too, babe.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 9:46 PM
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Whose brain jumps right from prison rape to "private citizens" being "forced" to "use violence to prevent violence"?

I could see myself writing what McMegan wrote... when I was in college. Even now, I might make that leap, but I'd a) never actually say it except with people I knew very well and trusted and b) be horribly ashamed of myself when I realized what I was saying.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 9:46 PM
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354: Oddly, BTW, I also got to know a little (via correspondence) the Diana Moon who wrote "Letters from Gotham" back in those days and whom she refers to as "Diane E." Moon is indeed not now known as an irrational warmonger -- but McMegan disingenuously leaves out that this is because she completely repudiated her warblogging days once she finally realized her fellow-travellers were a pack of delusional mediocrities wrapped up in a false and empty cause. (And she was quite bitter about the fact that not one of them seemed to have a moment's thought to spare for her once she fell away from the ideological fold.) Moon showed a lot more integrity in that regard than McMegan ever has.


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 9:47 PM
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362: Interesting. I did not know that.

361: Right, which is why I said the bit about an editor. It's not that it's so impossible to imagine something stupid falling out of your mouth; we all do that. It's the putting it in print, and even more so, putting it in print in a supposed "apology" column.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 9:51 PM
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Isn't there some injunction against saying mean things about McMegan? Especially in one of Becks's posts? Because if not, I'd like to unburden myself.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 9:57 PM
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Knock yourself out, ari. Just one more service I provide for EotAW.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 9:58 PM
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You know, say what you will about McMegan, but she's quite tall.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 10:03 PM
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So. McMegan fucked up and was an asshole by mistake. Again. Next?

Sorry, but we know she's a distasteful, careless, indeed uncaring writer. Leave her as marginalized as possible.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 10:03 PM
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She has a high forehead as well. A sign of distinction, IIRC.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 10:04 PM
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Oh! But ari should feel free to unburden himself.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 10:04 PM
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367: Leave her as marginalized as possible.

She maddens us so precisely because she is not marginalized at all, and continues to have defenders on blogs like this one.

But you're right, we've been over all that. I don't have anything much new to add.


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 10:06 PM
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Still, I understand this completely:

If you've ever declared that people who jump queues should be shot, you have some sense of what I mean. And I was young, and lots of things seem inappropriately funny when you're young

So, y'know, plenty else to take her to task for, but the 2x4 thing read to me like a flip, hyperbolic comment even then.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 10:06 PM
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Isn't there some injunction against saying mean things about McMegan?

There's a generally observed courtesy, which I deliberately decided to breach in this instance.*

I appreciate Becks' attention to hosting (long ago, Ogged joked that he and she had similar "The blog needs to be fed" timers) and her diligence about posting a variety of comment-provoking topics. In deference to her dedication, I try to refrain from editorializing about McArdle.

*I'm not interested in "saying mean things" about anybody, but I'm usually happy to criticize their writing and thinking.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 10:07 PM
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McMegan fucked up and was an asshole by mistake.

"By mistake" is doing a hell of a lot of work there.

I've also never quite understood the theory that the way to deal with reprehensible blowhards in the public sphere is by complaining about anybody who mentions that they're reprehensible, but that's a separate issue.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 10:08 PM
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The internet archive appears to have the relevant letter from gotham post linked from the McMegan post.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 10:09 PM
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Let's talk more about astrology! I'm a Leo with my moon in bullshit!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 10:09 PM
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371: I never thought the two-by-four thing was as much of an issue as the attitude underlying it, myself.


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 10:09 PM
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She maddens us so precisely because she is not marginalized at all, and continues to have defenders on blogs like this one.

I hate to say it, DS, but she is tall.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 10:11 PM
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(Are there defenses of her here that are more serious than 366 and 368? I don't remember any.)


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 10:12 PM
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371: FTR, and speaking as someone who was one of those protesters, a flip, hyperbolic comment can be every bit as offensive and wrong as a carefully considered insult or policy suggestion.

On preview: What DS said.

And now I'm headed for bed.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 10:13 PM
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*I'm not interested in "saying mean things" about anybody, but I'm usually happy to criticize their writing and thinking.

In the spirit of this sentiment I should say again that she was perfectly nice and gracious in person, and that the things that she said in person still didn't make a damn bit of sense.

I bet I should stop. I just bet.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 10:14 PM
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Because if not, I'd like to unburden myself.

After you're done, can you explain wtf Josh "more Texan than thou" Tr/v/no is doing in the comment section over at EotAW?


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 10:15 PM
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Astrological cycles mean that lots of you have revealed your birth years.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 10:16 PM
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I should say again that she was perfectly nice and gracious in person

I still think you looked like you wanted to strangle her.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 10:16 PM
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381: the marble douchebag himself? What an honor!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 10:17 PM
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378: Cf. Brock upthread, albeit half-heartedly.


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 10:18 PM
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(Although I seem to remember Witt guessing about 8 years off of my actual age.)


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 10:18 PM
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383: It's possible she was humming Billie Jean.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 10:18 PM
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384: I'm not sure if it's Tr/v/no or an imposter. The comment he left doesn't include the phrases "make no mistake" or "moving on" or the word "risible".


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 10:20 PM
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381: It's a big tent? And really, I don't have a single new thing to say about McMegan, particularly not if Becks would rather I say nothing at all. (Anyway, if I really want to vent, I have my own blog for that sort of thing -- not that I ever post anything over there. Blogging is so 2008. I'm on to macrame and raising alpacas. Wave of the future, I tell you.)


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 10:21 PM
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373: "By mistake" is doing a hell of a lot of work there.

It sure is, isn't it? See McMegan's post linked in 211.

Be it resolved: McMegan's underlying attitude leads to her problematic public pronouncements. What to do.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 10:22 PM
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384: Do you have links to some of his classics?

388: It's definitely him.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 10:23 PM
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The thing that astrology works on is that we're liable to be struck by the things that are right and filter out the contrary data as being no fun.

Yup. I suspect if you mixed up all of the signs and descriptions, you'd have Geminis boasting about their solid temperament.


Posted by: Cala | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 10:25 PM
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I was going to make some comment about the alpacas, but then Google reminded me of this and this, and I'm starting to worry I'm exhibiting a disturbing pattern here.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 10:29 PM
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I'm a Gemini.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 10:30 PM
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I was going to make some comment about the alpacas

I hear they're excellent for herding sheep.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 10:33 PM
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Blogging is so 2008.

I'm kind of amazed at how quickly I went from starting to use twitter and thinking it was better than I expected to rarely logging in or looking at it and thinking it's kind of crappy.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 10:35 PM
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The thing that astrology works on is that we're liable to be struck by the things that are right and filter out the contrary data as being no fun.

Of course. But just to confirm, attempt to diagnose my chinese and decadent western signs.

Chinese astrology is dead to me because I had to the learn the verb, "to be born under the sign of," which is a really complex character completely unrelated to "to be born".


Posted by: foolishmortal | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 10:40 PM
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More or less on-topic, I find myself tempted to reply to a facebook message from an old acquaintance who wants to meet for coffee with "sorry, I don't socialize with libertarians." (Looking for something polite but dismissive. Hmm.)


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 10:40 PM
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392: It's like psychology. You're neurotic! No, wait, you're a little neurotic but also a tad depressive! Which may be due to low blood sugar. You seem to be moody, are you a writer? Perhaps you are just introspective. An introvert! Well, introverts are a certain way, you know. On the other hand, stubborn and strong-minded, with a rebellious streak ... did you have issues with your parents, your mother or father perhaps? Do you need to work out some anger? In any event, I wondered before: are you a writer? Perhaps your drive to creative endeavor is a substitute for some unfulfilled wish.

Just like astrology, western psychology provides us with a mish-mash of narratives.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 10:42 PM
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"sorry, I don't socialize with libertarians without compensation ."


Posted by: foolishmortal | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 10:45 PM
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I would think it should be the libertarians who oppose socialization.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 10:48 PM
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plenty else to take her to task for, but the 2x4 thing read to me like a flip, hyperbolic comment even then

You almost got me not to care any more, which is as charitable a feeling as I've ever had about McMegan, but the bit quoted made me go back and read her contemptuous, self-important, bullshit non-apology, and now I can't stand her all over again. Well done!


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 10:50 PM
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"I just don't think meeting me for coffee would be in your rational self-interest."


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 10:52 PM
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402: Don't get sucked in, Jesus!


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 10:56 PM
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398: sorry, I'm going Galt that afternoon.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:00 PM
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It's too far to walk and it's such a pain to catch a pony in this city.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:02 PM
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Talk about me, damnit. Who cares about McMegan? The comment count keeps rising but none of them are about me anymore. :(


Posted by: Jacqueline | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:05 PM
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Is there something you'd like said about you, Jacqueline?


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:08 PM
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It's nice to be right.


Posted by: oscar wilde | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:08 PM
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407: McMegan is, by all accounts, tall. Statuesque even. She is charming in person, and knows a proprietress of the blog. All of this evinces her clear advantage in being bitched about. Sorry.


Posted by: foolishmortal | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:12 PM
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"Is there something you'd like said about you, Jacqueline?"

Eh, I don't really care. It's just nice when the threads about me are on-topic. This one has been mostly about other libertarians and Chinese astrology and other boring topics for the last 300+ comments. I'm on the verge of not even checking it anymore if y'all don't step up your game.


Posted by: Jacqueline | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:14 PM
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Hardly any thread stays on topic here.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:16 PM
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That is to say, don't take it personally. Are you tall, by chance?


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:17 PM
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It's OK when threads originally about something else end up being about me instead. The reverse is not acceptable. :)


Posted by: Jacqueline | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:17 PM
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Further to apo's line of inquiry, what are your positions on mayonnaise, cummerbunds at the opera, and, most importantly, Ned's grandpa?


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:21 PM
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412, 413: sure, but she could try to be more interesting in an effort to wrest our attention from such fascinating matters as whether or not children make your eyes itch.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:23 PM
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Is 5'6" tall? When I wear my clogs I'm more like 5'8", is that tall?

I don't care for mayonnaise, except maybe mixed with a little leftover salmon and dijon mustard for a cracker dip.

Cummerbunds are cool. But I'm from Seattle, where people feel comfortable wearing shorts and t-shirts to the opera.

I know nothing about and thus have no opinion on Ned's grandpa.

Unsolicited, but volunteered: Drinking a bottle of wine by oneself is fun!!!


Posted by: Jacqueline | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:25 PM
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Hardly any thread stays on topic here

Which is to say, this is our game. Feel free to keep things more or less on track by denouncing McMegan or discussing why you think your astrological sign is appropriate or not.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:25 PM
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Everyone always compares me to (or confuses me with) McMegan and I've read a few of her posts (when Tyler links them 'cuz Tyler is hot) but mostly I consider her to be TL;DR.

I am a Cancer which is a crab which my husband says is very appropriate. I even have a bitchin' crab hat.

But when I was single and did internet dating I had a profile on some site that let you choose between picking from a drop-down box or writing free-form answers to questions. I answered "What's your sign?" with "Astrology is crap" and got a couple of dates out of just that one answer.


Posted by: Jacqueline | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:28 PM
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When I wear my clogs I'm more like 5'8", is that tall?

I think you want to avoid trying to stand and swing with Megan. Punching up is exhausting. At your first chance, shoot in and take her to the ground. Her grappling is totally weak.

Unless you're a Taurus. In which case, just hit her with a 2x4.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:30 PM
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This is less entertaining than when the English Courtesan dropped in.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:31 PM
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Give it time, Josh. She just got here.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:32 PM
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I assume that really is JMPP.

410: McMegan is [...] charming in person

Let's not exaggerate, fm. People said "perfectly nice and gracious," which doesn't go the distance to "charming." I think it just means she doesn't bite.

I just want to be clear on that. For some reason I've lost track of.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:32 PM
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Apostropher: Is this MMA? Can I get behind her and execute a rear-naked choke?


Posted by: Jacqueline | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:32 PM
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Most threads are less entertaining than when the English Courtesan dropped in. Toodle pip!


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:34 PM
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424: !!!

Okay, now I'm a little turned on.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:34 PM
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I assume that really is JMPP.

Someone's tryin' pretty hard IP-wise or lives conveniently near to the right place if not.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:34 PM
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I was with you until "choke".


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:36 PM
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426: oh, everybody learns to scrap in Somalia libertarian paradise. Got to.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:36 PM
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"I assume that really is JMPP."

Check my blog for confirmation. Although I'll probably delete the post when I sober up so that's only good for those of you who are here now.


Posted by: Jacqueline | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:38 PM
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427: a gentleman never tells.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:38 PM
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You should probably go ahead and open up that next bottle of wine.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:39 PM
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I was with you until "choke".

Jacqueline choked out Ned!


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:40 PM
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My wife is 5'6", doesn't like mayonnaise, and is from Seattle, and I'm watching BSG this very second. Apparently my entire life up to this point has been a lie.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:42 PM
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"426: oh, everybody learns to scrap in Somalia libertarian paradise. Got to."

Fuck, why does everyone always assume that I'm one of THOSE libertarians? Even I get in arguments with THOSE libertarians and invite THEM to move to Somalia too.

Damnit, Jim, I'm a pragmatic incremenatlist minarchist, not an anarchist! I think maximum human liberty is achieved through a minimal government that protects human rights, property rights, and enforces contracts. I want a government that is less than zero, but significantly less than what we have now.


Posted by: Jacqueline | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:43 PM
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I want a government that is less than zero

You *have* been drinking, haven't you?


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:46 PM
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Fuck, why does everyone always assume that I'm one of THOSE libertarians?

Most commenters at Unfogged seem to not know any actual libertarians in real life, which makes threads about libertarianism here rather odd.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:46 PM
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I mean, more than zero. Fucking wine.


Posted by: Jacqueline | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:46 PM
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455: I figured I was wrong, but that you'd correct me.

It's sort of a market solution.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:46 PM
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Homework?


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:46 PM
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Ooh! Ooh! I know some real-life libertarians! They're crazy.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:47 PM
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I know plenty of libertarians. Gun nuts? Live in New Hampshire? Good with computers? Into the whole Ron Paul thing? Them, yeah?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:48 PM
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I, like, didn't turn in all the assignments for my writing class before the end of the semester, and the instructor gave me a B+ but told me I could turn in the rest and raise my grade (I gave her the "fellow Buffy fan" secret handshake early in the semester and became teacher's pet, yo). Since a B+ is ABSOLUTELY UNACCEPTABLE I have a bunch of short "project assessment memos" I'm supposed to write this week about how the actual assignments made me FEEL and what I LEARNED and other such bullshit. Fuck. Noone does this shit in real life.


Posted by: Jacqueline | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:50 PM
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Yeah, in real life, it would be Powerpoint presentations about how the assignments made you feel and what you learned.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:51 PM
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I'm also perfectly aware of the many fine grained, ever shifting distinctions between those crazy, unthinking libertarians spouting daffy theories about the optimality of a Somalia style society and the thoughtful, practical libertarians who will unleash a well-considered, highly rational, wicked ultra mega free society where the invisible hand smears us all with awesome at all times just as soon as they can find more than 20 people to vote for their yet-to-be-determined dream platform. I just don't really care, because I'm only in it to make fun.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:53 PM
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Gun nuts? Live in New Hampshire? Good with computers? Into the whole Ron Paul thing? Them, yeah?

Yeah, them. Nice folks, wouldn't you say?


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:54 PM
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Noone does this shit in real life.

Yes, but when you take classes in Second Life you can be a butterfly robot.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:54 PM
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I'm in it to get my kicks before the whole shithouse goes up in flames.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:54 PM
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446: I've always enjoyed their company.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:55 PM
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I want a government that is less than zero . . .

You *have* been drinking, haven't you?
apostropher


What she really wants is a government beyond the zero.


Posted by: foolishmortal | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:56 PM
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447: A killer butterfly robot?


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:57 PM
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451: as long as you do your homework, sure.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:58 PM
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I want a government made of antimatter, so it can annihilate other governments.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 05-12-09 11:58 PM
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447: a butterfly robot.

That got stepped on 50 million years ago and now it all sucks and we gotta pay taxes and fight wars and shit like that.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:00 AM
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"I know plenty of libertarians. Gun nuts? Live in New Hampshire? Good with computers? Into the whole Ron Paul thing? Them, yeah?"

Handguns and birth control are the two essential ingredients for women's liberation.

Computers are awesome, and the internet sits at the intersection of awesome and win.

Personally, I held my nose and registered as a Republican in Nevada just so I could caucus for Ron Paul, because it was SO MUCH FUN TO FUCK WITH THE REPUBLICANS. Not because I thought Ron Paul actually had a realistic chance. But the Republicans really needed a good fucking with.


Posted by: Jacqueline | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:00 AM
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439: No way, Tweety. Nobody gets to put their finger there for less than $20.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:00 AM
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Jesse Ventura makes perfect sense many times in this clip. Doesn't make him right about everything, but hey, thanks for making really good sense for a bit.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:00 AM
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How did 439 predict 455 so well?


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:01 AM
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Sigh. The new girl steals the thunder.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:01 AM
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453: A neutrino government, practically undetectable.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:03 AM
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And if you want the libertarian nutjob counterpoint, I guess it's here, where goes on about guns and immigration.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:04 AM
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^he


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:05 AM
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Handguns and birth control are the two essential ingredients for women's liberation.

An interesting theory.

Computers are awesome, and the internet sits at the intersection of awesome and win.

Also the intersection of massive, open-ended federal investment and public education, curiously enough.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:05 AM
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460: a string-theoretic government; orthogonal to itself eleven different ways and the even though the math works out nobody ever predicts anything.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:07 AM
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I just can't get that worked up over government investment in basic science and infrastructure. I guess, theoretically, I'd eventually cut it in Libertopia, but it's just not a priority of mine.


Posted by: Jacqueline | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:07 AM
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Handguns and birth control are the two essential ingredients for women's liberation.

I'd substitute education and equal opportunity for one of those. Whichever one you like, I guess; it's too late to argue.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:08 AM
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Sweet, we get to keep the internet!

Next, let's talk safe drinking water.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:09 AM
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Jesus: If you can't protect yourself against rape and/or pregnancy, what good are education and equal opportunity to you?


Posted by: Jacqueline | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:09 AM
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455: Huh. Sifu is some amazing magic at 439.

Computers are awesome, and the internet sits at the intersection of awesome and win.

Who's JMPP again? Enthusiastic at the very least.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:10 AM
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Women with an education are LESS likely to get into gun battles, Jesus. When you've got something, you've got something to lose. And that goes for the real, non-blog Jesus, too. Never forget.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:10 AM
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This reminds me so much of the time I was dressed as Santa and ended up in a long, drunken argument with a LaRoucher at a mall in LA. Can't quite put my finger on why.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:11 AM
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I've never met a libertarian NH immigrant, but the regular type of NH person seems to do a sensible approximation. The only practicing libertarian I know moved to sweden in 1995, on account of the prisons.


Posted by: foolishmortal | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:11 AM
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My wife once got into a long, drunken public argument with a LaRoucher. Jesus, how many of you people am I married to?


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:12 AM
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Why it reminds you of it or why you ended up in the long, drunken argument?


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:12 AM
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If you can't protect yourself against bears and lyme disease, what use is a car?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:12 AM
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Jesus: If you can't protect yourself against rape and/or pregnancy, what good are education and equal opportunity to you?

Excellent point. I'll ask my mom.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:14 AM
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474: the latter might answer the former. I feel like someday I'll end up at Chuck-E-Cheese having an earnest debate with the band about currency valuations, and that'll be the trifecta.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:14 AM
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468: If you can't protect yourself against rape and/or pregnancy, what good are education and equal opportunity to you?

Oh for christ's sake. Okay, so Jacqueline has not read or absorbed anything about the economic conditions affecting childbirth rates in developing countries.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:15 AM
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Handguns and birth control are the two essential ingredients for women's liberation.

I'm not sure how this is wrong. Out of the mouths of bots . . .


Posted by: foolishmortal | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:15 AM
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I personally would probably be more likely to use my handgun to subdue and rape a woman than to protect myself from being raped. That's basically just a realization that there's a chance a metal pole could fly through my brain, turning me into a psychopath, whereas I can't think of a scenario in which I would be raped while packing heat.

Although in Libertopia, they let you keep your guns when they put you in prison, so the calculus changes.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:17 AM
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"Next, let's talk safe drinking water."

Sifu: I would have been a development economist had I been better at integral calculus. I'll take safe drinking water (and immunizations and micronutrients) however I can get them.

I fall more into the Amartya Sen line of thinking -- "Development is freedom." If you're a sustenance-level farmer, and the only choice you get to make today is whether you get to eat (you need the energy to work in the fields) or your children get to eat (they are starving and crying), because there isn't enough food to go around, are you really "free" just because some government official isn't hassling you? Other so-called "libertarians" accuse me of being "socialist" for having such concerns.

Hence the being a minarchist, not anarchist. In the US, we're rich enough to get safe drinking water without government intervention (I pay for bottled drinking water than tastes nicer than what comes out of Lake Mead). But if requires government intervention to get safe drinking elsewhere, so be it.

Basically, I just want the outcomes of people's lives to be the result of the choices they make and not the circumstances they are born into or shit that randomly happens to them. Here (in the US) I think that we coddle people way too much (and coddle large politcally-connected corporations way too much more) and that should stop. But I acknowledge that is not yet the case in much of the world.


Posted by: Jacqueline | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:18 AM
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I want a government made of antimatter, so it can annihilate other governments.

You must have loved the past eight years.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:20 AM
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"Who's JMPP again? Enthusiastic at the very least."

FUCK YEAH. If we were having this discussion in person, I would be very loud, kiss you on the cheek, and then dance on the nearest table before singing my next karaoke number.

My husband is making me go to Virgnia next month for his friend's wedding and the part I am most excited about is that I have talked him into going to the "Escape from Dinosaur Kingdom" tourist trap. I LOVE THE WHOLE WORLD, AND ALL ITS TACKINESS.


Posted by: Jacqueline | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:21 AM
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481: In the US, we're rich enough to get safe drinking water without government intervention

I need an off switch for this person now.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:22 AM
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"Excellent point. I'll ask my mom."

Were you planned?


Posted by: Jacqueline | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:23 AM
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In the US, we're rich enough to get safe drinking water without government intervention

Okay, fun's over, kids. Last one to leave turns out the lights, 'kay?


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:24 AM
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THE CHIMPEROR HAS BEEN REBORN IN ALLURING FEMALE FORM

CHIMPEACH BEFORE IT'S TOO LATE


Posted by: OPINIONATED GRANDMA | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:25 AM
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488

Et tu, parsimon?


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:25 AM
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"I need an off switch for this person now."

Come on, Pars. Think about it. We have a huge market for BOTTLED WATER. When pretty much all municipal water supplies in the US are PERFECTLY SAFE. People buy bottled water because they prefer the TASTE OF IT. Compare that to 99% of human existence, internationally or historically.

The US is incredibly rich, and no longer requires government intervention to provide a safe (or tasty) water supply.

Less-rich countries, not so much.


Posted by: Jacqueline | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:26 AM
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484: Be kind. She's drunk and libertarian. She knows not what she says.


Posted by: foolishmortal | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:26 AM
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Sifu: I would have been a development economist had I been better at integral calculus.

It's pretty easy. You just take the integral.

In the US, we're rich enough to get safe drinking water without government intervention (I pay for bottled drinking water than tastes nicer than what comes out of Lake Mead).

We are? How do you know? Who do you buy that water from? Dasani? One of those fly-by-night companies that sell generic water for the casinos to rebrand in Vegas? Turns out you're pretty much drinking tap water from somewhere, maybe filtered, maybe not. And hey, speaking of government intervention, let's talk Lake Mead. Let's talk, actually, the very existence of Las Vegas.

Basically, I just want the outcomes of people's lives to be the result of the choices they make and not the circumstances they are born into or shit that randomly happens to them.

I don't disagree, and yet I feel that on a different, unsaid level, I disagree so very, very deeply. Isn't that sort of magical.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:26 AM
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The US is incredibly rich, and no longer requires government intervention to provide a safe (or tasty) water supply.

Half of this statement is half true. It's like a puzzle. Made of mirrors.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:27 AM
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486, 488: oops. Now I feel like I pooped the communal bed.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:28 AM
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494

C'mon, guys. Isn't this way more fun than complaining about McMegan?


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:28 AM
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495

To sum it up, I think libertarianism is a luxury of a developed economy. A luxury I hope that one day the whole world and everyone in it is able to enjoy.


Posted by: Jacqueline | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:28 AM
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I should say that drunk Jacqueline is being a good sport, and needn't take the fact that we're arguing with her as evidence of anything other than the fact that we find her views absurd.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:29 AM
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497

I'd like to buy the world a coke in a pony-shaped bottle.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:29 AM
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498

When we will experience the humanity of the commons.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:30 AM
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Basically, I just want the outcomes of people's lives to be the result of the choices they make and not the circumstances they are born into or shit that randomly happens to them.

Indeed. But it'll be tough to raise the estate tax to 100%.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:31 AM
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500

Avoid the commons; Jetpack pooped in it. Tragedy indeed.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:31 AM
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501

Bottled water is freedom.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:32 AM
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You could have paid him to poop somewhere else, ari. At least until that metal rod flew through his brain and he stopped comprehending rational thought. That was your cue to kill him, more in sorrow than in anger.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:34 AM
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503

This is weird. And it makes me want an apple.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:34 AM
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504

Freedom's just another name for Deer Park in the fridge.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:35 AM
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505

It never gets old, huh?
Nope.
It kinda makes you want to...
Break into song?
Yep.
I love the socialists.
I love their idealism.
I love development.
However we get it.
I love the whole world.
I want it to be free.
Boom-de-ah-da, boom-de-ah-da!
Boom-de-ah-da, boom-de-ah-da!
I love clean water.
I love micronutrients.
I love prenatal care.
I love property rights.
I love the whole world.
I have such great hope for it.
Boom-de-ah-da, boom-de-ah-da!
Boom-de-ah-da, boom-de-ah-da!
When the whole world's rich,
then we'll all be free!
To make our choices --
set our own destinies!
I love the whole world,
want to give it liberty.
Boom-de-ah-da, boom-de-ah-da,
Boom-de-ah-da, BOOM-DE-AH-DA!!!!!


Posted by: Jacqueline | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:36 AM
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506

This is weird. And it makes me want an apple.

How, exactly, did you come across it?


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:37 AM
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507

Jacqueline's optimism is certainly appealing. It's too bad we're all doomed.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:38 AM
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508

496: I should say that drunk Jacqueline is being a good sport, and needn't take the fact that we're arguing with her as evidence of anything other than the fact that we find her views absurd.

If I squint and grimace real hard I can accept "absurd" over my preferred "completely idiotic." I only hope that 489 is at least partially tongue in cheek. Get back to us when you're sober, JMPP. Otherwise you just sound like an idiot.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:38 AM
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509

DOOM!


Posted by: Jacqueline | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:38 AM
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510

First of all, asserting stupid things on unfogged when you're drunk is a basic human right.

That said, I feel that each human's fate should be decided by the delivering doctor. He shall roll three dice for each attribute, and record them on the birth certificate. Patients of stature may re-roll the lowest score.


Posted by: foolishmortal | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:39 AM
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511

506: It's on the homepage at sports illustrated, and I wanted to see if the Celtics won or lost. Sorry, I know your feelings about sports. But back to the issue at hand: that's weird, right? I mean, what was the pitch from the ad team, I wonder.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:41 AM
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512

"He shall roll three dice for each attribute, and record them on the birth certificate. Patients of stature may re-roll the lowest score."

If I weren't already married to the most awesome man ever already I would want to hump you right now for the bitchin' D&D reference.


Posted by: Jacqueline | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:41 AM
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513

510.2: Apgar score should be determinative. Just ask James.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:42 AM
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514

511: I've seen three different scenarios. Did you see the one where they did the thing with the cup?


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:43 AM
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515

I wanted to see if the Celtics won or lost.

Oh man did they ever win. What a game!

Bruins won, too, which I suspect is only of interest to Apo, who it annoys.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:43 AM
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516

513: Speaking of basketball, can you feel the impending championship? Or are you not yet counting your Earnest Byner touchdowns?


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:44 AM
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517

I'm interested in who the Pens beat next as well.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:45 AM
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518

515: No, I'm interested in a "it's too bad that the Bs won" kind of way. Being from Montreal makes me feel like that, I guess. Sorry.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:45 AM
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519

Not about me, again. Try to stay on topic, guys. Sheesh. :)


Posted by: Jacqueline | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:46 AM
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520

518: that brings me some measure of joy, too.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:47 AM
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521

515: But hurrah for the Cs. My dad will be delighted. And I'm pleased, too.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:47 AM
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522

516.last: Which would have of course only tied the score leaving them in precisely the same position they were the year before at the end of The Drive. (But of course they would have had The Momentum.)

Sorry, Cleveland sports fans are even delusional about their delusions.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:47 AM
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523

508 is a good example of the reactions to libertarianism that are prevalent at this site and that I find so odd.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:48 AM
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524

520: You're too young to know my friends from your hometown, I think. But we (my friends and I, not you and I) used to watch the Bs play the Habs in the playoffs every year back when I was a youngster. It was fun to laugh at Ray Borque's futile quest for a Cup. Then it was even more fun to watch as he won one while I lived in Denver.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:50 AM
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525

Sorry, I know your feelings about sports.

You do? What are they?


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:50 AM
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526

522: You're a killjoy. You know that, right?


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:51 AM
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527

See, if we weren't all so coddled, we too could experience the freedom of bottled water.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:51 AM
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528

523: well, the idea that the our ability to purchase bottled water means that government intervention in the purity or availability of clean fresh water is now entirely unnecessary is a little daffy, you must admit.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:52 AM
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529

525: I thought you were anti-. If I got that wrong, sorry again.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:52 AM
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530

that's weird, right?

Meh. No weirder than lots of ads.

I mean, what was the pitch from the ad team, I wonder.

"Sex sells," I'm guessing.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:53 AM
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531

only of interest to Apo, who it annoys

I'll be annoyed if they blow a 3 games to 1 lead, certainly. Right now, though, I'm more annoyed that I'm still at work at 3 in the morning and that this report is a complete blown-up nightmare.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:54 AM
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532

Listen 512, people. I am the most awesome husband ever. Jackie knows it. Sifu knows it. Someday you'll all know it.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:54 AM
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533

524: truth be told I never followed the Bruins with much acuity. But holy crap is there some bad blood there.

If the Celtics pull this series out you'll probably get to see them demolished by your (other?) hometown squad, which will presumably also be fun on a couple of different levels.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:54 AM
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531: and the Bruins are certainly sorry to have done that to you.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:54 AM
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529: More apathetic, really.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:55 AM
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536

and that I find so odd

What do you find odd about it, teo?


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:55 AM
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537

528: Did you ever wonder why I drink only rainwater and grain alcohol?


Posted by: foolishmortal | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:56 AM
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538

Walt: Dude, sorry to disappoint you, but my secret identity is not your wife. However, if you would like to play a naughty role-playing game tonight in which you pretend to punish her for my postings, you go ahead and get your freak on.


Posted by: Jacqueline | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:56 AM
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By the way, if any of you haven't always already had an inexplicable hatred for Boston sports, and would like to jump on the bandwagon, consider that if the Bruins win the Stanley Cup this year, Boston will have had four teams in four different sports win their respective championships in four consecutive years.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:59 AM
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523: teo, I can only refer you to 489:

The US is incredibly rich, and no longer requires government intervention to provide a safe (or tasty) water supply.

This is just a stupid statement. Yes, the US is incredibly rich in comparison to other countries. No, it is not the case that it "no longer requires government intervention to provide a safe (or tasty) water supply." That's a stupid statement. The water supply in the US is as it is now due to government-subsidized procedures actively in place even as we speak.

It's too late to talk about more general objections to libertarianism. If JMPP is a libertarian, she's a ridiculous one, at least as represented in statements like the one above.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:59 AM
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541

well, the idea that the our ability to purchase bottled water means that government intervention in the purity or availability of clean fresh water is now entirely unnecessary is a little daffy, you must admit.

Absolutely, and I'm certainly no libertarian myself. I mean, I work for Your Friendly Neighborhood Freedom-Stealing Federal Government. I'm just saying that, while libertarians definitely believe some crazy stuff, there are lots of people out there who believe lots of crazy stuff. There are a billion Christians, for example. I don't think there's much point in focusing on the crazy stuff people believe, especially when they're otherwise quite pleasant.

Speaking of bottled water, btw, I was interested to discover on my travels that there's a Crystal Geyser bottling plant in Olancha, California. Because when I think pure mountain spring water, I think Owens Lake.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 1:00 AM
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541: oh, I mean, I tend to think of libertarians (at least not the fakey-fakey torture supporting Republican kind) as a little like slightly disobedient puppies. Sure, they can be annoying, but they aren't really hurting anything, and isn't adorable that they think they're going to catch that bird.

That's the Crystal Geyser bottling plant, I believe. I'm not sure if the spring is on site, or if they're just reprocessing tap water like everybody else.

That plant is also only a few miles from the most fabulous beef jerky stand on the planet, which I would have told you to visit if I'd remembered.

Damn, I love CA 395.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 1:03 AM
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543

||

The local college radio station is playing some slightly out-of-the-ordinary King Crimson all of a sudden.

!!!

|>


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 1:04 AM
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544

"isn't it adorable"


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 1:05 AM
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545

K, room is spinning now, time for bed. Thanks all for the entertainment.


Posted by: Jacqueline | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 1:08 AM
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546

You Americans are so closed-minded.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 1:08 AM
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547

That plant is also only a few miles from the most fabulous beef jerky stand on the planet, which I would have told you to visit if I'd remembered.

Where is it? I drove all the way around the lake, then north on 395 all the way to Tahoe, and I didn't see any beef jerky stands. Not that I was looking for them, of course.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 1:09 AM
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547: right there. It's pretty tough to miss if you actually pass it, as it has a giant sign that says "FRESH JERKY" and there's nothing else around for miles except ghost towns.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 1:10 AM
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549

541: I don't think there's much point in focusing on the crazy stuff people believe, especially when they're otherwise quite pleasant.

teo, that sounds great, but it doesn't work well in practice. People with crazy beliefs wind up making gay marriage illegal, or voting against clean water laws ... you know what I mean. I'm surprised you're saying this.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 1:12 AM
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550

People with crazy beliefs wind up making gay marriage illegal, or voting against clean water laws ... you know what I mean. I'm surprised you're saying this.

Surely you don't think you're going to change their minds by arguing with them.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 1:18 AM
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548: Further investigation reveals that it appears to be south of the junction, so I didn't go past it.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 1:18 AM
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550: No. But I seem to feel the need to register my strong disagreement. Otherwise they might think they're sensible people. I'll lay off JMPP if she shows up again with such gibberish, if that's the general consensus.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 1:25 AM
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553

I don't think, btw, that there should really be anything surprising about my attitude on the libertarian question. Surely the fact that I'm extremely conflict-averse and inclined to prioritize a congenial tone very highly is common knowledge here by now.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 1:27 AM
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554

And with that I'm off to bed.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 1:31 AM
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553: True enough. If she shows up again with such idiocy, I'll just avoid, as I said.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 1:36 AM
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556

546: I posted that picture at apostropher.com a few years back, and got a sternly worded request to take it down from the parents.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 1:54 AM
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556: From other discussion in the thread you linked:

minneapolitan: when are we going to set this guy up with JMPP

Ogged: That's exactly what I thought when I read the email apo linked. Alas, I think she recently got married.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 4:29 AM
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558

||

NPR had the economics editor of teh WSJ going on about a new reports saying that SocialSecurityMedicareandMedicaid were going to go broke in 2015. He did point out that the medicare and medicaid problems were related to the total and growing costs of healthcare, but he seemed to say that the only options for social security were raising payroll taxes or cutting benefits by something like 13%.

Has anyone written up a blurb that I could just send out every time I hear this stuff about how the taxes were raised and then the money was stolen to cut taxes for the rich. Perhapsslightlyless inflammatory language would be desirable, but this stuff pisses me off.

|>


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 4:49 AM
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559

The thing that astrology works on is that we're liable to be struck by the things that are right and filter out the contrary data as being no fun.

Interestingly, the research that purports to support the Meyers-Briggs personality inventory is not too far removed from that phenomenon. You could even argue that zodiac signs are more scientifically sound, since they don't suffer from test reliability like M-B does (that is, you can identify your zodiac sign with near certainty, and it doesn't change from one occasion to another).


Posted by: Knecht Ruprecht | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 5:25 AM
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560

Oh, wow: semi-pwned by parsi in 399.


Posted by: Knecht Ruprecht | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 5:28 AM
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561

538: Yeah, my wife didn't find the idea that she was really you funny either.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 5:31 AM
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562

That's basically just a realization that there's a chance a metal pole could fly through my brain, turning me into a psychopath

I saw a replica of the famous brain-flying-through metal pole, and it is very large indeed. The fact that Phineas Gage was up and about at all, however altered, after that episode, is astonishing.


Posted by: mcmc | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 5:31 AM
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563

I dare say you may have come to the wrong place if it's slightly less inflammatory language you are after. Also, claims. That social security etc. Are going broke always strike me as odd. It's like me telling Rory that her college fund has run out while I drop another 10K at the craps table.


Posted by: di kotimy | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 5:33 AM
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559: Interestingly, the research that purports to support the Meyers-Briggs personality inventory is not too far removed from that phenomenon

Which was also what I was elliptically getting at with my ENTP crack in 356. (Although I will admit I got somewhat hooked when the first write-up I ever saw of my "type" could have easily been written by my wife in collaboration with my boss.)

Also, it is Myers-Briggs.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 5:53 AM
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565

It's nice of Jackie to drop by, especially after she's been drinking. Where can we send the fruit basket, Jackie?

That said, "In the US, we're rich enough to get safe drinking water without government intervention" is empirically mistaken*--especially so if we stipulate that we want both safe drinking water and safe disposal of sewage. I've looked at the business case for water provision in the service of actual capitalists, and I can tell you that you have to slice up the market pretty carefully to find conditions under which Jackie's Libertopia is economically viable without some government subsidy** or intervention in the free market. The discount rate just kills you.

*More precisely, universal access to clean drinking water could not be accomplished at anything close to current cost levels without government intervention; even in Libertopia, you have to stipulate some kind of enforcement of Coaseian property rights to make it possible.

**"B-b-b-b-ut what about all those successful privatizations of water utililities?", you say. Only works because the underlying asset was put in place long ago by a government that didn't care about making a market rate of return on the investment. "Well what about private companies like the old Lyonaise des Eaux? How did they do so well building water works in 19th century France?" Short answer: government enforced monopoly concessions.


Posted by: Knecht Ruprecht | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 6:01 AM
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566

Also, it is Myers-Briggs.

Anti-semite!


Posted by: Knecht Ruprecht | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 6:11 AM
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567

I was born and bred in the Myers-Briggs test, Brer Fox.


Posted by: Nakku | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 6:36 AM
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568

I decided not to believe in astrology after the fourth person recoiled in horror at learning my birth sign (scorpion).


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 7:12 AM
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569

recoiled in horror at learning my birth sign (scorpion)

But that's the sex sign! Scorpios are (supposedly) like crazy people in that regard.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 7:15 AM
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570

Huh. I've had an inexplicable crush on a Scorpio for ages now. Must have been intuition!


Posted by: di kotimy | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 7:18 AM
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571

570: I'm sure there are plenty of things that could explain your crush on Jackmormon.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 7:20 AM
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572

Roberta's a Scorpio, fwiw.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 7:23 AM
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573

My mum sent me a full horoscope that she'd had done for me as a Christmas present.

I thought she'd gone mad [she's not religious, and not given to new age credulity] but it turns out some woman at her work does them and she was amused by the fact that mine is bang-on. It is, in fact, pretty freakish. it's several pages of near perfect description of my personality.

Thankfully, the profiles for everyone else in my family are comically wrong.



Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 7:31 AM
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I was irrationally overjoyed when I found that due to the mismatch between the Chinese calendar and the western one I am not, as previously believed, a Cock. I am a Monkey, Bitches! A banana-munching poop flinger!


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 7:34 AM
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575

if the Bruins win the Stanley Cup this year, Boston will have had four teams in four different sports win their respective championships in four consecutive years

A not-uncommon reaction to emotional trauma, Sifu has decided to believe that the "helmet catch" just did not fucking happen.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 7:34 AM
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576

At the risk of castigating a deceased equine, I think Jackie's friends from 481 are right to accuse her of political heresy. One of the practical difficulties with being a libertarian is that your creed is philosophically brittle: once you start admitting of exceptions, the whole edifice begins to crumble very quickly.

You can justify collective action on micronutrients and clean drinking water in all kinds of ways that are consistent with a liberal worldview: economic efficiency, utility maximization, humanitarian concern, equalization of life-chances, etc. But any one of those rationales is a dangerously slippery slope for a doctrinal libertarian. Jackie conveniently draws the boundary at "rich country / poor country", but I defy her to come up with a rationale for supporting micronutrients in Ghana that doesn't apply equally well to subsidized dental care for impoverished schoolchildren in eastern Kentucky.

The orthodox Randians, God help them, get this, which is why they take perverse pride in their willingness to say "fuck you" to the poor. To concede that selfishness isn't always and everywhere morally superior is to open the door to all kinds of socialistic intrusions on personal liberty.

If any appreciable fraction of your self-esteem is tied to being a libertarian, an excess of intellectual honesty is perilous. I give Jackie credit for making concessions to the obvious, but I caution her not to think about it too much.


Posted by: pain perdu | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 7:46 AM
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577

Unsolicited, but volunteered: Drinking a bottle of wine by oneself is fun!!!

I think that's the saddest thing I've ever read.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 7:49 AM
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578

577: Don't knock it till you've tried it.


Posted by: pain perdu | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 7:51 AM
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579

573: Not reallyl related, but that just reminded me: in highschool, I took a psychology course and at one point during the semester the teacher handed out a "personality test" that we completed and handed in. He had us use a pseudonym of our own devising on it so he wouldn't know who was who.

A day or two later he handed back a personality profile to each of us. It was about a page long, and he had us read our own and rate how accurately we thought it described us. Most of us were pretty impressed with it and it received very high accuracy marks (the average was something like 8 or 9 out of 10).

Then he revealed that our tests hadn't actually been evaluated at all, and that all of us had just received the exact same description.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 7:52 AM
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I actually find I like JPPP here. Please no one hold it against me.

347
Fittingly, due to a technicality, Rah has two birthdays.

What in the world does this mean? Is it something like February 29 but he's willing to celebrate it on non-leap-years? Did the hospital record it as five minutes before midnight on one form but five minutes after midnight on another form?


Posted by: Cyrus | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 7:53 AM
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581

What in the world does this mean?

BORN AGAIN, INFIDEL!


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 7:53 AM
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582

577: She didn't say she had only one bottle, ajay.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 7:53 AM
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583

Born while his mother was straddling the International Date Line?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 7:54 AM
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584

577: Yeah, she didn't have the guts to go for bourbon or scotch. That is really sad.

That Awkward Family Photos site is fabulous. I love the latest one, with Sheer Awkward Rage emanating from the daughter.


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 7:54 AM
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580.last: Rah's mother observes the Julian and his father the Gregorian calendar.


Posted by: pain perdu | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 7:56 AM
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586

569: But that's the sex sign! Scorpios are (supposedly) like crazy people in that regard.

572: Roberta's a Scorpio, fwiw.

"Supposedly", apo?

And "fwiw"?


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 7:57 AM
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587

That is really sad.

Drinking a bottle of bourbon by yourself turns unfun in short order.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 7:57 AM
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588

586 was by me.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 7:57 AM
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589

587: Try throwing the bottle off the roof instead.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 7:59 AM
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590

re: 573

This was much much more detailed than that, and some of it was quite specific in ways I won't go into here. I think it just so happens that I fit quite closely the stereotype of my own particular star sign, while the three other members of my family who are born in the same week as me, do not. The equally freakishly specific profile of my sister completely failed to be accurate in any way shape or form.

I'm not attributing any validity to the profile, of course, but it is freakishly specific in ways that go beyond just some of the more general descriptions of personality traits that, I assume, you are describing.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 8:00 AM
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591

578: Of course, you don't smash the bottle if it's full.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 8:00 AM
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592

"Supposedly", apo?

That's the standard line. How well it fits 1/12 of the world's population is up for debate.

And "fwiw"?

Are you asking what it means, or why I'd use it? (1. for what it's worth; 2. to acknowledge the possibility of selection bias)


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 8:01 AM
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593

Sorry you landed a dead fish, apo.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 8:04 AM
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587: Drinking a bottle of bourbon by yourself turns unfun in short order.

UR DOING IT WRONG


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 8:07 AM
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595

It is, in fact, pretty freakish. it's several pages of near perfect description of my personality.

Same here. Someone wrote mine up a few years ago, and though I expected it to be total nonsense, it turned out to be uncannily accurate on a very specific level.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 8:11 AM
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596

the stereotype of my own particular star sign

An astrologer would say that's mostly coincidence and that your sun sign is only 1 one of 3 main points (moon and rising sign), and the least informative of the three at that, since it serves mostly to mediate between your moon, which represents your hidden inner self, and your rising sign, which represents how you appear to others. It's just much easier to determine your sun sign (1 per month) than your moon (changes every couple days) or your rising sign (changes every couple hours), so that's what people cite.

Combining the three creates 1728 types, rather than the familiar 12, of course. IANAAstrologer, however.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 8:13 AM
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597

Sorry you landed a dead fish, apo.

That was the first wife (Aquarius).


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 8:14 AM
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598

Roberta's a Scorpio, fwiwftw.


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 8:16 AM
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599

592: AMTF.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 8:17 AM
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600

Scorpios are supposedly sex maniacs but also drama queens with deep reserves of resentment and duplicity.


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 8:17 AM
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590: Yeah, I wasn't trying to imply anything with my anectdote, it's just that your story reminded me of it.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 8:18 AM
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602

I know far more about astrology than a respectable person should, but I kinda look at them like cryptoquotes. Entertaining to play with, but not much useful.

Maybe that's more like man-nipples than cryptoquotes.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 8:20 AM
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600: Also supposedly tend toward health issues with the naughty bits.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 8:22 AM
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Astrology strikes me as primarily just a way for people to talk about personalities and psychology in a relatively low-key and non-threatening manner.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 8:22 AM
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re: 601

Yeah,. that general phenomena is well-exploited by newspaper horoscopes, and, on a more sophisticated level by cold-readers, mentalists and fake-psychics and the like.

I wasn't casting doubt on your anecdote, just remarking that what made the horoscope I was given amusing/weird was how specific it was compared to that type of general description.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 8:22 AM
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605: "You are attracted to Czech women. You enjoy commenting on blogs. You double-space your comments with nefarious intent. . . . "


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 8:26 AM
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607

604: Let me guess, you're a Leo?


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 8:30 AM
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608

well, the idea that the our ability to purchase bottled water means that government intervention in the purity or availability of clean fresh water is now entirely unnecessary is a little daffy, you must admit.


Especially when much of the bottled water comes from .... municipal water supplies.


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 8:30 AM
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609

Not Galt Gulch Spring Water!


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 8:31 AM
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All this sex stuff around Scorpio is odd, given that it's the sign for people conceived on or around Valentine's Day and/or Lupercalia. The ancients, so wise.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 8:32 AM
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re: 607

No.

re: 606

Yes! It also mentioned something about hating fusion music and the use of HDR photography.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 8:37 AM
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All this sex stuff around Scorpio is odd

Moreover, it's not at all about sex as fun--that's Sagittarius, laydeez--but about sex as analogy to death (petit morte). Because death and transformation is what Scorpio is really about.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 8:39 AM
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I find pretty much any personality-typing nonsense fascinating and fun to play with, despite the fact that it is all nonsense. Astrology is completely ridiculous, of course, but still entertaining, and I love talking about people's M-B types. I had a very serious astrology-type as a friend in law school, and was very amused to find out that as a Leo with Leo rising and Aries for a moon sign, I should be the most charismatic, interpersonally compelling person out there, given that in person I'm much more likely to be mistaken for a potted plant than a rock star.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 8:39 AM
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611.1: That comment was directed at M/tch, the rapping street lion.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 8:39 AM
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Here's the thing, though: I only ever talk about astrology with complete strangers with whom I'm trying to make polite, time-passing small-talk. To have them suddenly turn all serious and sex-and-death regarding upon hearing that I happen to be a "Scorpion" has really soured me on the topic.


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 8:44 AM
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607: Uncanny!


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 8:45 AM
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"Fittingly, due to a technicality, Rah has two birthdays."

Rah is Elizabeth II?
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Queen%27s_Official_Birthday

("I thought you said he was a queen, not the Queen...")


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 8:46 AM
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615: So answer "Taurus" next time.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 8:47 AM
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619

Uncanny!

I know!


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 8:48 AM
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I had no idea Queen Elizabeth was the paramount chief of Fiji.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 8:48 AM
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it's not at all about sex as fun--that's Sagittarius, laydeez

I dismiss astrology as nonsense except when it's so totally accurate like this. Um, laydeez.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 8:50 AM
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To have them suddenly turn all serious and sex-and-death

God, I know. That's the very reason I stopped telling people I'm a pedophile.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 8:50 AM
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it's not at all about sex as fun--that's Sagittarius, laydeez

And to tie the thread together The Libertarian (of ye old dark days of yore) was in fact a Sagittarius. Also, I drank a bottle of wine by myself after breaking up with him. Ajay is correct; it was quite sad.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 8:52 AM
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613: My first exposure to M-B was in a setting where it was me and a couple of other "oddballs" and about 20 razor-straight middle american (geographically) mech/elec/metallurgical engineers in supervisory to lower middle management positions. The M-B results were striking (and predictable I guess), all but one of them was STJ split about 50:50 on E versus I. Not that you really needed the assessment to "tease" out the personality differences, but it was intriguing to see it play out so completely according to form.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 8:53 AM
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618.---Are you fucking with me? Are Tauruses reputed to turn on impertinent questioners and gore them to death? Otherwise, just lying to people would indeed make that stupid social ritual easier.


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 8:53 AM
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well-exploited by newspaper horoscopes, and, on a more sophisticated level by cold-readers, mentalists and fake-psychics and the like.

I'm a sucker for Amazing Randy-type debunkings of claims of the paranormal. There was a great one he did with some renowned "psychic" in Russia who claimed to be able to devine all kinds of things about people on the basis of a photograph. Randy gave the lady a picture of Ted Bundy, and steered her into some embarassingly wrongheaded assessments of the executed serial killer.


Posted by: pain perdu | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 8:53 AM
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624: Well, the thing about M-B is that types of personalities do exist, and you can tell a fair amount about what people are like by asking them questions. So, even though the underlying theoretical structure seems to me to be mostly nonsense, saying that I'm an INTP does actually identify some things that are true about me.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 8:56 AM
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STJ split about 50:50 on E versus I

Last time I took it (which was quite some time ago), I was really extreme NFP, but exactly in the middle between E and I.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 8:57 AM
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626: Yes, the Amazing Randi is great on stiuff like that. There is a very interesting Andrew Weil essay where he spends some time with Uri Geller and falls for it big time, and then goes to see Randi, who blows it all up (although Weil's conclusion from the whole thing is a bit more nuanced than mine would have been, but still interesting).


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 8:59 AM
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628: yeah, i'm close on E/I depending on the contest of how I think of the questions (What kind of party?), but I am pegged at the extreme on the other three.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 9:01 AM
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context + CAPS


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 9:02 AM
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565, 576: rockin' it on the libertarian deconstruction front.

To sum it up, I think libertarianism is a luxury of a developed economy. A luxury I hope that one day the whole world and everyone in it is able to enjoy.

Marx would arguably have agreed with this. However, he probably would have claimed that at a certain point property rights begin to conflict with development and wealth generation.

I have great respect for libertarianism as an impulse, actually, but you can't view it as a practical take on the real world (though suspicion of government is good to cultivate). There's a fundamental problem in not understanding the centrality of government to society, how society and government are inseparable and if you try to "get rid of" government it will just reconstitute itself in a new and likely less controllable form. So everyone is arguing about what government should do, not whether it should be all-powerful. It always already is.

My husband is making me go to Virgnia next month for his friend's wedding

JMPP MEETUP! I'm down for it.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 9:04 AM
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I have great respect for libertarianism as an impulse, actually, but you can't view it as a practical take on the real world (though suspicion of government is good to cultivate).

Right -- there's a valuable critique there of any specific government action (if you're thoughtful about it), but it's not a set of policies.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 9:06 AM
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||

Okay, now I'm getting swirly-eyed.

|>


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 9:08 AM
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JMPP MEETUP!

Great idea.


Posted by: Amber | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 9:09 AM
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The problem with the personality tests is that it's hard, if your response to tests is to figure out what makes them tick, to refrain from figuring out how you want to be perceived, or what set of answers matches certain types.

I think my astrology three-sign group predicts that I should be mostly nuts. Gemini with Scorpio rising and Cancer for a moon sign.


Posted by: Cala | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 9:10 AM
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Well, yeah. When I take an M-B test, I come out INTP, but I'd come out the same way if the test was "Read these sixteen descriptions and pick the one that describes you." It's not necessarily inaccurate, but there's certainly potential for it to be self-serving.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 9:13 AM
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"Well what about private companies like the old Lyonaise des Eaux Pfizer? How did they do so well building water works in 19th century France developing complex biotech drugs in 21st century America?" Short answer: government enforced monopoly concessions.

An interesting question to libertarians is always what they think about intellectual property laws.

One of the many reasons I like Ron Paul is that he was willing to take on the pharma companies over drug reimportation from Canada. He even chewed out his libertarian colleagues for being pro-government enforced monopolies.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 9:13 AM
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Aren't the personality tests designed to take into account how people prefer to be seen? I thought I read that somewhere.


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 9:15 AM
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Wait, we had a real, live libertarian here last night (drunk and lonely, even), and yet you animals couldn't stop talking about astrology? I'm ashamed.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 9:17 AM
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If JMPP can make it up to DC, I volunteer to host a meetup at my place. I will also supply her with wine. And potentially a table to dance on, too.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 9:20 AM
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It's not necessarily inaccurate, but there's certainly potential for it to be self-serving.

Right. I think it's more likely to tell you how you perceive yourself, and I think that's useful information. I think part of my suspicion is that the answers to quite a lot of the questions for me, personally, is "depends on what I feel like that day", which makes deciding whether I'm really an extrovert or an introvert, or an extrovert who really just doesn't like most people, etc., very difficult.

And it's hard not to read a normative component into the questions. "Do you make decisions emotionally?"


Posted by: Cala | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 9:20 AM
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the underlying theoretical structure seems to me to be mostly nonsense

Here we agree. Even if you stipulate that the axes in M-B are real and meaningful, it's a huge theoretical leap to assume that individual positions on an axis are distributed bimodally rather than centrally. Of course, you can write a test that will yield bimodal scores, but that's begging the question. Under the equally plausible* assumption that individual positions are somehow distributed around a central mean, the whole notion of "types" becomes meaningless, because most people would be either right in the middle, or so close to the middle that there is a high probability of testing error misclassifying them.

Are there people whose personalities correspond unambiguously to an M-B "type"? Undoubtedly. But there's a good argument that these people are unusual outliers, and that most people are located in the mushy middle.

*in the absence of evidence to the contrary, I would submit that Occam's razor favors the assumption of a central distribution, unless you take Jungian theory as axiomatic


Posted by: pain perdu | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 9:23 AM
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Wait, we had a real, live libertarian here last night (drunk and lonely, even), and yet you animals couldn't stop talking about astrology?

Libertarianism and astrology are alike in their relationship to fact and reason, so it's natural to discuss them concurrently.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 9:24 AM
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643 effectively pwned by 642, once you translate the academese into plain English.


Posted by: pain perdu | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 9:26 AM
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Handguns and birth control are the two essential ingredients for women's liberation.

I'm still laughing about this.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 9:28 AM
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I'm still laughing about this.

Somehow, even read's comments on Mongolian child-rearing practices were never quite as culturally foreign to me as that one. I'm not sure you could find, in all the annals of comparative social research, a statistical correlation as robust as the inverse relationship between incidence of unlicenced gun ownership and the well-being of women.


Posted by: pain perdu | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 9:35 AM
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I remember how every single person at my high school was so proud of being that rare INTJ personality type.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 9:36 AM
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The Student, the Fish, and Agassiz by the Student

I first encountered this story in Pound's ABC's of Reading.

I only hope that 489 is at least partially tongue in cheek. Get back to us when you're sober, JMPP. Otherwise you just sound like an idiot the spunky and idealistic heroine of an early Heinlein juvenile.


Posted by: Populuxe | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 9:37 AM
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648: Hey, me too! Gee, it's weird that we're all that rare personality type!


Posted by: Cala | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 9:39 AM
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never quite as culturally foreign to me as that one.

Huh. Maybe I've spent more time listening to libertarians than you have -- it strikes me as wrong, but not puzzling or foreign at all. It's the same thing as "God made men. Mr. Colt made them equal."


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 9:40 AM
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It's the same thing as "God made men. Mr. Colt made them equal."

But not quite. What she's saying is that Mr. Colt liberated women, which is absurd.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 9:49 AM
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Maybe I've spent more time listening to libertarians than you have

Perhaps. Or perhaps I've spent more time around gun nuts than you. Trust me that the overlap between the populations of gun nuts and feminists is much, much smaller than JM3P seems to think.


Posted by: pain perdu | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 9:53 AM
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Which M-B type is most prone to agreeing with or believing in the value of M-B types? Which zodiac sign is most interested in astrology? I've seen people defend astrology from critics by attributing it to the critic's sign, but (a) I don't remember what sign that was, and (b) I've only seen people do so jokingly and I wonder if anyone has ever been serious about it.

I'm a leo, FTR, and a dog in the Chinese zodiac.


Posted by: Cyrus | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 9:56 AM
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653: Huh? The JMPPPPP position doesn't require that gun nuts be feminists; it only requires that gun ownership be a practical way of protecting oneself against violence, sexual and otherwise.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 9:57 AM
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Oh, and that the threat of violence against women be the only substantial obstacle to women's liberation. Both are false, but not in an alien kind of way; I know people who believe both.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 9:59 AM
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I always thought I was a dog in the Chinese zodiac, but apparently that was neglecting the right date for Chinese New Year the year I was born. Looks like I'm a cock.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 9:59 AM
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655: But that's just as stupid, right?


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 10:00 AM
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658: Oh, wrong. Absolutely wrong. But not bizarrely foreign; it's a perfectly familiar set of beliefs.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 10:02 AM
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658: Oh, wrong. Absolutely wrong.

Geez, LB. It's fine to disagree with DS, but do you have to do so in such a vehement manner?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 10:03 AM
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659: The French are perfectly familiar to the British, but are still foreign to them.


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 10:05 AM
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The JMPPPPP position doesn't require that gun nuts be feminists

I didn't claim that it did. It does, however, require that a society that politically privileges (unlicensed) gun ownership be a society that is friendly to the aspirations of feminists, and I can think of no such society on the face of the earth. Hence, "culturally alien".


Posted by: pain perdu | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 10:05 AM
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658 to 657?


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 10:08 AM
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663: No, no, cock is much worse, and essear should feel terrible about this new information. Cocks are total dicks.


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 10:12 AM
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Eh. I overread 'culturally foreign', apparently. I wouldn't say that other than about a belief that was totally unfamiliar and surprising; something familiar, but just really wrong in an inexplicable kind of way, like the Women's Lib through Superior Firepower position, isn't 'foreign' to me as much as just wrongheaded. But there's nothing to argue about here, just different idiolects.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 10:13 AM
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Further to 662, it's not just the empirical absurdity of JMPPPPPPP's statement, but the sense of bewonderment about what kind of milieu even produces such thinking. It's like that weird anti-Zionist Jewish sect that favors destroying the modern State of Israel to hasten the coming of the Messiah. I can understand (though disagree with) the milieu that favors the destruction of Israel, and I can understand the milieu that eagerly awaits the coming of the Messiah, but the overlap between the two is a mental world I can't even begin to fathom.


Posted by: pain perdu | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 10:15 AM
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We could totally argue about idiolects. Where's your ambition, for God's sake?


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 10:15 AM
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668

But there's nothing to argue about here, just different idiolects.

TRY HARDER!


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 10:15 AM
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669

667: Your idiolect is so foreign, I have to get a stamp in my passport just to listen to it.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 10:17 AM
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666: the sense of bewonderment about what kind of milieu even produces such thinking.

Okay, now I'm with LB. It's called a "red state." I live in one, and I don't even live in the States.

It's like that weird anti-Zionist Jewish sect that favors destroying the modern State of Israel to hasten the coming of the Messiah.

???

Never heard of it, the above minus "Jewish" is how I'd usually describe "Christian Zionism."


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 10:18 AM
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669: Your idiolect is so Savage, its first name is "Michael."


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 10:20 AM
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I think some Hasidim fall into that category, vaguely -- a state of Israel not resulting from the return of the Messiah is DOIN IT RONG, and while I don't know that they advocate the destruction of the state, they at least disapprove of it on some level.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 10:20 AM
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Obligatory: Your idiolect is so shaggy, it's not that shaggy.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 10:21 AM
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674

Neturei Karta. Bill Maher interviewed the head of the group in Religulous, though not in a friendly fashion.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 10:21 AM
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I just love doing the nerdozens.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 10:21 AM
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though not in a friendly fashion

Shocking.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 10:22 AM
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677

Your idiolect is so stupid, the idiots are suing so that they won't be associated with it.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 10:23 AM
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I think the Jews that LB is referring to won't recognize Israel because it's (ostensibly) a secular state, and needs to be a Jewish state.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 10:25 AM
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My idiolect is so big, it has an elbow.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 10:25 AM
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It's called a "red state." I live in one, and I don't even live in the States.

I grew up on a property that abutted the property of one of the most esteemed gun nuts in the nation*, and he was a thoroughly uncontroversial and respected member of the community. So I yield to no one in matters of firsthand knowledge of red state gun-nuttery. And yet, if the belief had been widely shared in that community that handguns would lead to women's lib, I think the majority would have reconsidered their allegiance to the Second Amendment.

*from the perspective of technical mastery of the subject rather than prominence in the political arena. Interestingly, he had a cute daughter about my age who was a liberal feminist and didn't care much for guns. Blood is thicker than gunpowder, I suppose.


Posted by: pain perdu | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 10:25 AM
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673: Your idiolect could be Superkoranic if it wasn't so Moranic.

674: Okay, them I've heard of, but they don't advocate destroying the State of Israel to hasten the coming of the Messiah, they simply say Zionism is theologically mistaken in thinking it can force the end of Exile. Those are different things.


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 10:26 AM
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Take my idiolect. Please.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 10:26 AM
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681: So you're saying those are not the Jews we're looking for?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 10:28 AM
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Those are different things.

In public, yes. And not always then, even.


Posted by: pain perdu | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 10:28 AM
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And yet, if the belief had been widely shared in that community that handguns would lead to women's lib,

It's not guns=feminism=yay!, it's more like "My daughter doesn't need any of that there feminist nonsense to keep me from pushing her around, anyone gives her a hard time and she'll blow his nuts off with her .45. But she's a lady, not one of them libbers."


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 10:30 AM
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680: And yet, if the belief had been widely shared in that community that handguns would lead to women's lib, I think the majority would have reconsidered their allegiance to the Second Amendment.

Yet it's perfectly common for such people to say: "You leftists would rather see a woman raped and killed [etc., add tellingly lurid variations to taste] than carrying a gun in her hand." They're liberating women from [i]all those rapists[/i] -- and all the many, many, lasciviously detailed things those horrible and probably black men will do to them -- that you eggheads don't seem to care about.


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 10:31 AM
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687

In 685, "me" should be "men".


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 10:31 AM
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688

Wow, kind of bummed I missed JMPPPP showing up.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 10:33 AM
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687: Nah. We like you just the way God made you, LB.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 10:34 AM
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684: Benjamin Netanyahu called. He wants his idiolect back.

(No, seriously, not doing an "anti-Zionism is anti-Semitism" two-step this morning, thankyouverymuch.)


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 10:35 AM
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Handguns and birth control are the two essential ingredients for women's liberation.

To be fair, it's possible JMPPPP was revealing more about her predilections than her politics here, and that she meant 'handguns' as makeshift dildos. She could have been using the term as a stand-in for sex toys generally. Vibrators and birth control have both been important for women's lib. I don't know about the "two essential ingredients", but important.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 10:37 AM
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683: Strong with the Rhetorical Force, this one's idiolect is.

On the other hand, I asked for your idiolect's digits the other day and it gave me its address. Boo. Yah.


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 10:38 AM
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693

691 is inappropriate, Brock.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 10:38 AM
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694

It is?


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 10:41 AM
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695

Kinda... awkward... yeah...


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 10:42 AM
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696

No, I just thought it would be refreshing for me to tell somebody else they were being inappropriate for a change.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 10:43 AM
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697

(Though I'm not sure why, exactly...)


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 10:43 AM
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698

Well, damn. Meant only as a silly joke. Oh well.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 10:43 AM
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698: Sheesh, I'm just messing with you. Your idiolect is way too earnest.

I've got to get off this "idiolect" kick.


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 10:44 AM
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I'm not actually sure if Apo was joking, but sexual jokes about women who read the site, but aren't insiders enough to rely on everyone's goodwill, and also don't seem to be wildly evil, do kind of give me the creeps.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 10:44 AM
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701

700: Sexist.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 10:47 AM
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702

Dog, Sagittarius (Taurus rising, moon in Virgo), and the Mayan thing was so absurd I've already forgotten the answers. The traditional birth chart thing does describe me pretty well, FWIW.

I'm also an XXTP, which makes M-B profiling sort of useless on me. The first time I took the test I was chastised about how it wasn't supposed to be possible to be in the middle of any category, so I took one of the internet tests again and made note of every answer that was a coin flip, then went back and changed only those, and got the exact same score. I've played with the test a couple more times, and on the N-S measurement I either come down exactly in the middle or on the N side of things, but again, it's a coin flip. For I-E I've been exactly in the middle every time I've taken the test. So broadly I'm a thinker-processor, but the M-B profiling stuff I've seen puts much more weight on the first two factors than the second two.

Also, just for completeness, I was born on Sunday, which makes me "fair and wise and good and gay."


Posted by: fedward | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 10:48 AM
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703

700 is *totally* about makeshift dildos.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 10:48 AM
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704

On the other hand, I asked for your idiolect's digits the other day and it gave me its address.

But really it was the address for the building that tells you the time and temperature. Sucker.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 10:49 AM
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705

700: It wasn't meant as a "sexual joke", but as a comically-strained-reading-that-gives-her-the-benefit-of-the-doubt (by being less wacky than what she actually said). But whatever. I'm banned.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 10:49 AM
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706

And I'd take apart JMPPPP's assertion about drinking water, but it's already been done.


Posted by: fedward | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 10:50 AM
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707

Dammit, if I'd just waited thirty seconds I could have played 695 and 697 through. Ah, the road not taken.

704: Joke's on you. That building put out for my idiolect All Night Long.


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 10:51 AM
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708

I ended up shooting the person giving me the MB test. First he implied that I was cruel to turtles, and then he started asking me about my mother.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 10:51 AM
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709

705: Oh, I wouldn't have said anything if Apo hadn't made a crack about it. It did hit my awkward radar, though.

You are banned, of course.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 10:53 AM
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710

707: Dude, that building puts out for anybody. Even your skanky ass idiolect.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 10:54 AM
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711

Take this one, dammit!

I'm a seven.

[If I had bigger tits...] /max


Posted by: Wrongshore | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 10:54 AM
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712

710: Your idiolect is really mean, and kinda hurts my feelings.


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 10:58 AM
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713

Dude, that building puts out for anybody.

I've heard she even lets people in through the back door.


Posted by: pain perdu | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 11:00 AM
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714

Speaking of personality tests, any opinions on the Birkman .


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 11:02 AM
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715

Can't believe I didn't think of 713.

714: I'm not familiar with the test, but if "Peter Engler, Career Coach" isn't a shill, I'd eat my hat. If I had a hat.


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 11:06 AM
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716

714: I think the comment left on your blog by a "Career Coach" firmly establishes that the test is utter bullshit.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 11:07 AM
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717

Pwned!


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 11:07 AM
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718

711: I'm types five AND seven. The problem with all these either/or questions on personality tests is that for many of them my answer is either "both" or "neither."


Posted by: fedward | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 11:09 AM
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719

I don't know that much about the Birkman, but the regional manager of the Kinko's I worked at in my early 20s went on a binge of making all the individual store managers take it. I forget which of the four colors she was looking for specifically, but it became clear quickly that anybody who wasn't heavy in that quadrant would be going nowhere. The ones who did well (by her lights) tended to be insufferable dicks.

So, my impression of it is has been that it's stupid, but that's undoubtedly more an impression of how it was being used (and, more specifically, of that regional manager), since I've not seen any of the actual questions.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 11:10 AM
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720

718: Like "diplomatic, charming, and ambitious" versus "direct, formal, and idealistic". What if I've been "direct, ambitious, and not at all charming"?


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 11:11 AM
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721

719: it's a little awesome you worked at Kinko's. Were you the guy that sold the weed or one of the other guys?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 11:14 AM
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722

The results on the RHETI sample questions could just as easily be "Which Star Trek character are you?"


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 11:14 AM
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723

722 makes me think all those Facebook quizzes are actually thinly diguised personality inventory tests being collected by grim-faced Facebook Overlords to prepare for The Great Cull.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 11:15 AM
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724

723: I've never taken one. Will that spare me or doom me first?


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 11:16 AM
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725

I was the guy who bought the weed. Our delivery guy was the one who sold the weed.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 11:16 AM
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726

722: I think I'll interpret the result that I'm a Six as meaning that I should be played by Tricia Helfer.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 11:16 AM
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727

725: I wonder if that economy is still going strong today now that FedEx owns 'em.

724: I haven't either. Want to form a ragtag group of rebels hiding in the woods and eating squirrels as we chip away at the Machine?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 11:18 AM
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728

I'm sad that I missed JMP+P too, especially since it seems as though her politics are maturing somewhat. Young bloggers run into the Licensed to Ill problem: Everybody says and does some pretty foolish things in their early twenties, but most people are lucky enough not to have much of it recorded for posterity.

So, back on topic, are we talking about dildos or personality types or the interstices between them?


Posted by: minneapolitan | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 11:18 AM
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729

720: You're probably an 8.

I like the enneagram for its fluidity -- once you get in past the initial shade-the-bubble stage, it tends to have good observations about personality and relationships. The more you use these to establish a fixed personality, the less truthful they are, but it in particular is good for looking at the ways people act under stress or in its absence. Like astrology, there's a tendency to create enough detail to allow for any possibility, but unlike astrology, it doesn't offer a story of causality (birth date, star position, etc.) -- just a system of personality.


Posted by: Wrongshore | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 11:19 AM
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730

Nor I.

What type of Facebook user are you?

You are the Facebook user who never takes the quizzes. You are probably over 17 years of age and were on the internet before Facebook.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 11:21 AM
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731

727: We will be off the grid! No one can even begin to imagine what Hogwarts house we'd belong to!


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 11:21 AM
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732

731: we can make our own facebook out of Maple leaves and mud.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 11:22 AM
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733

711: I'm a 3, an "Achiever," which can only be successful if I am "healthy" and not driven to "stress." That seems pretty true. But I'm only a 3 by a tiny little bit, and am almost a 7, 8, or 9, just a little more than I'm a 1 or 5. I am not at all a 4.

I am not good at personality tests.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 11:22 AM
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734

I wonder if that economy is still going strong today now that FedEx owns 'em.

FedEx grossly overpaid for Kinkos and has been challenged to achieve its target returns. The latest turnaround plan was launched just before the recession, so it's probably too early to judge its success. Among other things, they have rebranded the stores (dropping the Kinko's name for good), gone to a smaller store format, and consolidated some of the less frequently used services into fewer locations (digital imaging makes it unneccessary to have a complet set of equipment in every location).

Apropos of the discussion above, a non-trivial issue when FedEx took over was that FedEx has a comprehensive pre-employment drug-screening policy. At the old Kinkos, I think drug use was a requirement to be hired.


Posted by: pain perdu | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 11:24 AM
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735

The Amazing Randi co-wrote this paper on magic and the brain along with Teller, a "professional thief" and some other people:

http://www.neuralcorrelate.com/smc/files/publications/macknik_martinez-conde_nrn08.pdf


Posted by: Lemmy Caution | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 11:24 AM
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736

Apropos of the discussion above, a non-trivial issue when FedEx took over was that FedEx has a comprehensive pre-employment drug-screening policy. At the old Kinkos, I think drug use was a requirement to be hired.

734: yeah, explicitly meant the intra-Kinkos weed economy. I could give a crap about the makin'-copies business.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 11:26 AM
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737

3's are strivers: "I must be impressive and attractive to be happy". Makes sense to me.

I find these are pretty good thumbnails for the types. In brackets are my annotations.

1 I must be perfect and good to be happy. [The righteous prig. There are rules, people.]
2 I must be helpful and caring to be happy. [The manipulative bitch. You need me, tell me you need me.]
3 I must be impressive and attractive to be happy. [The show-off. Wants attention as much as the 7, but actually cares whether it's positive.]
4 I must avoid painful feelings to be happy. [Diva. In my experience -- and I've married two -- it's more, "I must be though of as special."]
5 I must be knowledgable and independent to be happy. [The bore. I'm the smartest in the room, let me tell you why.]
6 I must be secure and safe to be happy. [Paranoid. Ideal position is right-hand man in the rebel army. 6's have this great cocktail of loyalty and rebellion. Don't tell me what to do, and never cheat on me.]
7 I must be high and entertained to be happy. [The flake. Wants attention as much as the 3, but willing to take off pants to get it.]
8 I must be strong and in control to be happy. [The boss.]
9 I must be peaceful and easy to get along with to be happy. [The catatonic. 9's tend to fade their personalities out in the midst of conflict.]

My epithets above are for the unhealthy manifestations -- strong 1s are moral visionaries, 2s are great nurturers, 3s achievers, 4s deep, feeling artists, 5s brilliant intellects, 6s are wildly loyal and fierce, 7s nimble tricksters, 8s great leaders, 9s peacemakers.

The descriptions of the really unhealthy types are very fun. Here's 3 at rock bottom:

Become vindictive, attempting to ruin others' happiness. Relentless, obsessive about destroying whatever reminds them of their own shortcomings and failures. Psychopathic, murder. Generally corresponds to the Narcissistic Personality Disorder.

(For the record, that wasn't my impression of AWB.)


Posted by: Wrongshore | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 11:36 AM
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738

737: Damn. I'd like to think my 3ishness is mitigated by my 7-, 8-, 9ishness.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 11:46 AM
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739

I'm kind of in the middle on the I/E scale. I'm definitely NT. The only time I took the test for real I came out strongly J, but I think I'm a P. I mean I like things to be neat and tidy, but I think that's because I realize that I'm unable to be terribly decisive about placing things in categories.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 11:47 AM
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740

Psychopathic, murder... (For the record, that wasn't my impression of AWB.)

I love this. I don't seem like a psychopathic murderer...


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 11:51 AM
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741

737: The descriptions of the really unhealthy types are very fun

Yes, I like how they can be read as stages in time. So as a 7 I can possibly look forward to:

Finally, my energy and health will be completely spent: I will become claustrophobic and panic-stricken. I'll give up on myself and life: leading to deep depression and despair, self-destructive overdoses, and in the end impulsive suicide.

Can't wait to get going!


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 11:52 AM
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742

Doesn't this story, all by it self, deal a fatal blow to libertarianism?


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 11:55 AM
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743

742: Not sure. Left to its own devices, the invisible hand/geyser of the market would have scalded them with hot, steamy comeuppance.


Posted by: Wrongshore | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 11:57 AM
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744

A non-trivial number of the people who hear the story are going to think about how cool it would be to pee on Old Faithful.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:03 PM
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745

I'm a Five:

Become reclusive and isolated from reality, eccentric and nihilistic. Highly unstable and fearful of aggressions: they reject and repulse others and all social attachments.

Get obsessed yet frightened by their threatening ideas, becoming horrified, delirious, and prey to gross distortions and phobias.

Seeking oblivion, they may commit suicide or have a psychotic break with reality. Deranged, explosively self-destructive, with schizophrenic overtones. Generally corresponds to the Schizoid Avoidant and Schizotypal personality disorders.

Sounds about right.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:04 PM
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746

I'm a type 6 and 7 mixed. Which does suit me quite well. The type 6 thing was very useful for me -- I've never seen such a good description of my desire to be both a follower and a leader. It's like, I want to do all kinds of crazy shit, but I want to run it through a boss who takes final responsibility for it. It's a workable personality compromise, I think.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:06 PM
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747

484 had me giggling into the crook of my own arm, hunkered behind cubicle walls. Then 504 did it again. Then 510. Is this the best thread ever? I've only to read another three hundred comments to find out!


Posted by: Robust McManlyPants | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:08 PM
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748

When dreams fail, become self-inhibiting and angry at self, depressed and alienated from self and others, blocked and emotionally paralyzed. Ashamed of self, fatigued and unable to function.

How'd they know I was fatigued?


Posted by: four | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:14 PM
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749

I suspect I'm the worst combinations of type 3 and type 5.


Posted by: Cala | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:16 PM
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750

Wow, seven with a touch of six describes me *perfectly*. In fact, it spookily mirrors my own spontaneous attempts to describe myself to others. After decades of searching I've found a great job match to my personality type, which is nice.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:18 PM
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751

750 is how I come off -- it speaks to my yo-yoing between revolution and improv comedy.


Posted by: Wrongshore | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:21 PM
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752

||

You know what I like about Glenn Greenwald? He puts the important stuff in boldface so I don't have to read it all.

|>


Posted by: Wrongshore | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:24 PM
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753

742: There is a place where the boardwalk ends
And before the geyser begins,
And there, there is no oversight,
And there, the race goes to the bright,
And there, John Galt rises to an awesome height
To glory in his well-earned wins.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:26 PM
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754

Is this the best thread ever?

Did you see that there's a new Obama as Antichrist thread over at apostropher's?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:26 PM
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755

753: Awesome.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:27 PM
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756

I gotta get this off my chest:

649.2: I only hope that 489 is at least partially tongue in cheek. Get back to us when you're sober, JMPP. Otherwise you just sound like [...] the spunky and idealistic heroine of an early Heinlein juvenile.

This made me laugh. Thanks. I always did have a problem with spunky.

The thing Wrongshore outlines in 737 seems interesting.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:29 PM
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757

I would have pegged myself as a 6 based on Wrongshore's brackets -- and lo! I am!


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:33 PM
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758

There's a link to a 36-question test in 711, parsi. I would wager you score high on type 9.


Posted by: Wrongshore | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:35 PM
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759

Yeah, looking at Wrongshore's brackets, I don't think anyone would be surprised that I come out a five.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:35 PM
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760

I came up with the epithet version during an office exercise --the boss's wife was into enneagram and wanted to get everyone's scores, so we lied to people and said they would be divided up in teams according to their scores. After I wrote my version out, we scratched "bore" and replaced it with "nerd" -- figuring that bore was a far worse thing to call a person than any of the others.

You're not a bore, LB.


Posted by: Wrongshore | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:40 PM
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761

I would have pegged myself as a 6 based on Wrongshore's brackets -- and lo! I am!

I was convinced that I would be a classic 5, but I score equally highly as 1,3, & 5 and 4 & 6 are only 1 point lower.

I am all things to all people.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:40 PM
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762

761: Actually, Nick, I was looking for a 2. Can you be a 2? I need you to be a 2.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:42 PM
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763

On the topic of Rah's birthday, he is not the chief of Fiji. He was born in a state that had some funky regulations regarding what time zone was used to record births and, as his birth was near midnight, it resulted in him being born on one day but his birth certificate stating he had been born on an adjacent day.

I, too, have both a great love for and a great skepticism of any personality test/astrology/etc, even as I am a member of one of the fruitier religions one might think would endorse such things whole hog. I think most things of that type - from astrology to personality tests to lots of other things - remain popular because they provide us with a polite fiction of using an external methodology to examine ourselves and one another. Some people (myself among them) enjoy examining and dissecting motivations and reactions and making predictions about ourselves and others and such tools let us pretend that the results aren't anyone's fault in particular.

One of my favorites was a test taken at a conference of some sort years ago. The results were phrased in terms of how each type reacted when a friend called them in the middle of the night to ask for help with a flat tire. My type was the one that had the flat tire in the middle of the night and called all their friends to talk about it.

Finally, if JMP^n is still amongst us, this: seriously, a fucking Hunter? If you want easy maximal utility, for reals, go with the fire-spec Mage. Christ.


Posted by: Robust McManlyPants | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:42 PM
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764

Oh, not taking the bore thing personally, but "I'm the smartest in the room, let me tell you why" works nicely.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:43 PM
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765

Can you be a 2? I need you to be a 2.

Okay, I'm actually most things for some people.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:44 PM
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766

Oh, not taking the bore thing personally

That's just because you're not a 6.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:46 PM
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767

Did you see that there's a new Obama as Antichrist thread over at apostropher's?

*rubs hands together in anticipation*


Posted by: Robust McManlyPants | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:47 PM
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768

765: I can't belieive you lead me on like that. Cad.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:48 PM
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769

Okay, I'm actually most things for some people.

You're probably a 9.

I, too, have both a great love for and a great skepticism of any personality test/astrology/etc

You're probably a 7.


Posted by: Wrongshore | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:49 PM
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770

Some people (myself among them) enjoy examining and dissecting motivations and reactions and making predictions about ourselves and others and such tools let us pretend that the results aren't anyone's fault in particular.

Sort of like an emotional Milgram experiment? I, too, love these things, but can't quite say why. Perhaps they appeal to people's pattern-imposing instincts?

(4-5 or 5-4)


Posted by: foolishmortal | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:52 PM
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771

758: Alright. I'll try it. I'd been dithering while I was putting together a sandwich.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:52 PM
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772

You're probably a 9.

I just took it again flipping some of the 50/50 answers and came out distinctly a 5 this time. But I didn't score high on "9" either time. 1,3,4, & 6 all have higher scores than 9.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:55 PM
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773

We should come up with a quiz:

Which original Unfogged poster are you?

I think I'm definitely an Unf, maybe with shades of Bob.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:56 PM
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774

771: I'd been dithering

Hott!


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:56 PM
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775

770: I can't see why they wouldn't be fascinating. It's like science, but it's about ME!


Posted by: Wrongshore | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:56 PM
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776

747
Is this the best thread ever?

I don't know, but it does seem like the most civil thread of its length.

Anti-Semite.


Posted by: Cyrus | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:56 PM
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777

I wonder if Bob ever reads the site.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:57 PM
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778

Or maybe instead of "original" it should be "former" to give us more categories.

In which case I think I'd come down squarely as a meekins.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 12:57 PM
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779

Meekins posted once, right? Ice tea?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 1:00 PM
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780

766 Oh, not taking the bore thing personally

That's just because you're not a 6.

I scored evenly split between 5 and 6, so I'll take the bore thing personally.

Perhaps they appeal to people's pattern-imposing instincts?

Pattern-imposing instincts really are strong. I was about to give this elaborate example of why it can be really useful to impose categorizations of things, even if those categorizations are kind of arbitrary, but it would just bore everyone, wouldn't it?


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 1:02 PM
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781

Heh. I'm a 3,4,9 split based on the 36 question test, but I bet that the full shebang would have me a 5.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 1:02 PM
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782

779: That's my recollection. A pity, since s/he's a good and interesting writer at her/his other gig.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 1:03 PM
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783

but it would just bore everyone, wouldn't it?

No, no. Go right aheazzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 1:05 PM
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784

Are there no secrets? I thought Meekin's secret identity was NOFORN EYESONLY WHATEVER.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 1:05 PM
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785

Reading the full descriptions doesn't shed any more light on whether I'm a five or a seven, but it adds more weight to the third-place score for a one. In terms of positive attributes I'm probably more five than seven, but the negative attributes of sevens describe me very accurately. Plus I'm definitely a level 6 one:

Highly critical both of self and others: picky, judgmental, perfectionistic. Very opinionated about everything: correcting people and badgering them to "do the right thing"--as they see it. Impatient, never satisfied with anything unless it is done according to their prescriptions. Moralizing, scolding, abrasive, and indignantly angry.

Posted by: fedward | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 1:09 PM
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786

784: I'm just a really really good judge of writing style.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 1:12 PM
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787

||

But I still want cake. Where's our cake?

|>


Posted by: fedward | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 1:16 PM
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788

Ooh, I'm definitely a Level 5 three:

Level 5: Become image-conscious, highly concerned with how they are perceived. Begin to package themselves according to the expectations of others and what they need to do to be successful. Pragmatic and efficient, but also premeditated, losing touch with their own feelings beneath a smooth facade. Problems with intimacy, credibility, and "phoniness" emerge.

I don't really have "phoniness" issues, or at least I don't feel them as strongly as a lot of people who do what I do. But the rest about being raised to perform a self, in a totally Baldessare Castiglione sort of way, is me. I'm apparently working on destroying the smooth-surface thing. People tend to see me as successful and charming, but a totally neurotic-but-pleasure-seeking wreck nonetheless.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 1:20 PM
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789

Meekins was M/tch?

I've taken the Enneagram test before, the same one, probably as linked here before by Wrongshore. If I printed or scribbled down the results then, I don't know where they are.

I just come out scattered across several levels, and I seem to think it was similar the last time. It was clear to me this time that my answers were conditioned by recent events and my responses to those.

There's not much to make of this:

Level 1: 5
2: 1
3: 2
4: 5
5: 6
6: 5
7: 4
8: 2
9: 5

So I'm barely squeaking into a 5 at this moment. With equal strength as a 1, 4, 6, and 9. It's no surprise that I try to avoid conflict here (probably why Wrongshore thinks I'm a 9), or that I'm trying to avoid conflict in life lately (I'm settling my mom's estate and want it to be over).

Reading the write-up in 737, I was prepared to call myself a 6 with equanimity: 6's have this great cocktail of loyalty and rebellion. Don't tell me what to do, and never cheat on me.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 1:26 PM
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790

7 I must be high and entertained to be happy. [The flake. Wants attention as much as the 3, but willing to take off pants to get it.]

I don't think there's any need for me to actually take the test, is there?


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 1:28 PM
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791

789: My general advice, especially with the short test, is to read up on the two or three that you score highest on and see what you identify with. If we ever have an hour to kill together and you want me to administer the 144-question version, just say the word.

790: Yeah, that was kind of my guess.


Posted by: Wrongshore | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 1:33 PM
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792

Meekins was M/tch?

AT LAST IT CAN BE REVEALED!


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 1:39 PM
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793

Revealed that no, no Meekins was not M/tch, of course.

Whew! Hiding that fact was such a burden! That's a huge weight off my shoulders.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 1:40 PM
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794

I just thought it was an already-regular poster testing out whether it was possible to create new personæ by making a placeholder name.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 1:41 PM
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795

791: What can I say, I'm chuckling. As far as I'm concerned, I have conflicting impulses, and I know that. I might take you up on it. I already know what I want to focus on, which is breaking free of confines that are constraining me.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 1:41 PM
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796

You're probably a 7.

I am! With very high scores in two, three, four and five. Scattered much? Nah.

I don't know, but it does seem like the most civil thread of its length.

Anti-Semite.

Everyone knows civility is just a Marxist tool for repressing class warfare as the engine of creativity, you elbow-fondling Laroucher.


Posted by: Robust McManlyPants | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 1:42 PM
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797

This seriously is the facebook quiz thread now, isn't it.

What Incidental Character From One Of The Weaker Star Trek Shows Are You?

7!

Of 9.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 1:43 PM
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798

I already know what I want to focus on, which is breaking free of confines that are constraining me.

Bribe a screw and go out with the laundry.


Posted by: foolishmortal | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 1:44 PM
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799

I want to break free of the confines that aren't constraining me.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 1:46 PM
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800

Which original Unfogged poster are you?

My Facebook friends are currently circulating "Which employee at [local record store] are you?"

#711. Oh, look! I'm a 4! (Actually, I took it twice and and scored a 4 and a 7. Apparently, I'm a diva and a flake.)

"melancholy dreamers, disdainful, decadent, and sensual, living in a fantasy world. Self-pity and envy of others leads to self-indulgence, and to becoming increasingly impractical, unproductive, effete, and precious."

Which means that I'm either Elric of Melniboné or Super-Emo Boy.


Posted by: Populuxe | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 1:46 PM
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801

798: You sure are mysterious.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 1:49 PM
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802

788:...raised to perform a self...

Such a pithy expression of the source of at least 50% of my neuroses.

People tend to see me as successful and charming, but a totally neurotic-but-pleasure-seeking wreck nonetheless.

A decent description of all of my closest friends.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 1:58 PM
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803

I want to break free of the confines that aren't constraining me.

Those exist. It would be like repudiating infrastructure.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 1:59 PM
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804

Elric of Melniboné or Super-Emo Boy.

Or?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 2:15 PM
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805

804: Excellent point.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 2:17 PM
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806

#804. Exactly.


Posted by: Populuxe | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 2:18 PM
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807

I'm a 5 or a 9, it seems. Which does seem roughly right.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 2:31 PM
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808

797: Hey, don't make fun of 7 of 9. She's the reason Obama's president.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 2:41 PM
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809

She's the reason Obama's president.

Gawd, LB, way to blame women for men's sexual transgressions!!!!


Posted by: m. leblanc | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 2:55 PM
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810

I prefer to think of it as lauding her having stood up for herself. If she'd gone along with having unwanted public sex with her husband, it wouldn't have turned into an issue in the divorce, and the political landscape would be entirely different.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 2:57 PM
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811

Did anyone else have a hard time not thinking of her as "Six of one and half a dozen of the other"?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 3:01 PM
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812

811: More six of nine, actually.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 3:14 PM
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813

812: Is that like a cinq à sept?


Posted by: pain perdu | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 3:30 PM
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814

745

I'm a Five:

Me too.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 3:42 PM
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815

See, I knew there was some reason I liked having you around. Someone else "becoming horrified, delirious, and prey to gross distortions and phobias."


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 3:48 PM
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816

becoming horrified, delirious, and prey to gross distortions and phobias

LizardBreath and Shearer, the US Senators from New York of the future.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 4:14 PM
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817

I'm also a 5, though I closed the tab before seeing how strongly. I suppose it fits me better than the other groups; I was answering a lot of questions where neither answer felt descriptive of me.


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 9:32 PM
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818

Damn. Never get bitten on the foot by a spider, it makes you miss the fun threads.

615: To have them suddenly turn all serious and sex-and-death regarding upon hearing that I happen to be a "Scorpion" has really soured me on the topic.

Yeah, that's annoying and happens to me all the time. You can console yourself that the person saying that is ignorant of the system they are expousing.

625: Are Tauruses reputed to turn on impertinent questioners and gore them to death? Otherwise, just lying to people would indeed make that stupid social ritual easier.

Just tell them you're a Libra. That should contain enough truth particulates to satisfy them. 'You don't seem like a Libra.' 'Let's talk about groovy French fashions.'

613: I had a very serious astrology-type as a friend in law school, and was very amused to find out that as a Leo with Leo rising and Aries for a moon sign, I should be the most charismatic, interpersonally compelling person out there, given that in person I'm much more likely to be mistaken for a potted plant than a rock star.

a) Not neccessarily - it depends on where that rising is and b) damn, I thought (going by birthday post) that you came about on 32 not the day after. Your friend may have made an error. (Well, two errors.) (Three errors if you want to go all Randian and snarky.)

636: I think my astrology three-sign group predicts that I should be mostly nuts. Gemini with Scorpio rising and Cancer for a moon sign.

Nah. Cancer moon is sweet. And basically you're probably going to wind up marrying a guy who talks too much.

max
['Not that there's anything wrong with that.']


Posted by: max | Link to this comment | 05-13-09 10:43 PM
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819

613: I had a very serious astrology-type as a friend in law school

I missed this first time around. Was this friend also in law school? Do I need to expand my list of lawyer screening questions?


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 05-14-09 8:05 AM
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820

You know, she really wasn't an idiot generally. I can't explain the astrology/Tarot thing as making sense with her academic competence, but the academic competence was there -- I'd hire her in a heartbeat. I ended up putting it in the same box I use for the seriously religious -- while I don't understand at all what makes them believe the things they do, it empirically doesn't seem to be related to being generally confused.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-14-09 8:09 AM
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821

I used to have a philosopher acquaintance who, I was told, was a pretty avid follower of astrology. That didn't seem to impact upon her academic ability, as she was something of a high performer.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 05-14-09 8:10 AM
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822

Well damn. Turns out *Rory* is a 7. And a 1, which seemed obvious enough. But also a 7. Adolescence is going to be rough.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 05-14-09 8:27 AM
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823

818: Assuming free astrological charts online can be relied on, she got it right.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-14-09 8:37 AM
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824

she got it right

There is a "right"?

And OK, per 820 and 821 we all have our "things" and it is not necessarily a signifier of anything else about the person, but I will just say that some of the astrology discussion has been more culturally alien to me than almost any other discussion I've followed here. That is all.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 05-14-09 9:30 AM
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825

Right in terms of "Your moon sign is this, your rising sign is that, and Venus is in the other" are objectively determinable facts within the astrological system, starting from a time and place of birth. That any of those things means anything about your character is, of course, bullshit.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-14-09 9:32 AM
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826

823: she got it right.

Then I had the wrong day: Monday instead of Tuesday. Give the rising though, it's intuitively obvious (to me) what she couldn't understand. Basically, head west (way) and the sun will come out, so to speak.

The place to go for free charts is astrodienst, the google of the field. If you set up an account and punch in your data, you can diddle your zeitgeist as much as you want for free. Then you can hit the 'astroclick travel' and that should (if I guessed correctly) explain what the second sentence, first paragraph meant.

max
['That should be a few minutes' entertainment.']


Posted by: max | Link to this comment | 05-14-09 9:45 AM
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827

825: OK, revealing my ignorance, I did not know that there was an accepted canon of astrological stuff beyond the basic 12 signs (and even there for all I know there are significant competing theories).


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 05-14-09 11:34 AM
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828

Yeah, the basics of it are real astronomy. The idea is that the zodiac (in astronomical terms, the band of stars within which the sun, the moon, and the planets appear to travel) is divided into twelve constellations, which are the 'signs'. Saying that your sun sign is Taurus means that in the month you were born, the constellation behind the sun was Taurus (not actually, there are complications due to the fact that things have changed significantly since the Greeks set the system up. But close enough to think about that way) -- if you think about it, the fact that the earth orbits the sun in a year means the sun as seen from the earth is going to go through the signs, one each month, in a year.

And then the same for each of the planets, including the moon, allowing for the fact that each moves through the zodiac at a different speed -- the sign it's in means that you look up at the sky at the moment of birth, spot the planet, and see which constellation it's in (with the same complication referred to above). So your astrological chart is an objectively determined thing -- pointless, but objective.

Interpreting it is where the silly stuff comes in.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-14-09 11:58 AM
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829

an accepted canon of astrological stuff beyond the basic 12 signs

Oh goodness, you wouldn't believe the level of detail you can drill down into. Aside from the three big points, there are each of the planets, along with several asteroids and a few mathematically derived points. And then aside from the 12 signs are also 12 houses (based off the time of day you were born) that all mean specific things, then there are a whole host of relationships between each of the planets based on their angles against each other in the wheel, and the angles of the planets against the houses and signs ruled by each one and yadda yadda yadda.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-14-09 12:11 PM
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830

he constellation behind the sun was Taurus (not actually

Mmm, not really. As set up originally, the Greeks were dividing the sky into 30-degree arcs. The constellations were just used as a rough shorthand, but they aren't nice, neat 30-degree sized wedges. And, as you note, since that time, everything has progressed enough forward in the sky that it would all be off by a sign anyhow.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-14-09 12:15 PM
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831

Two signs, no? This is the dawning of the Age of Aquarius, after all.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-14-09 12:24 PM
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832

826: The place to go for free charts is astrodienst, the google of the field.

Ha, I know that place! From back when I wanted to understand what it was all about.

Apo seems curiously knowledgeable about the astrology thing, which is great.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 05-14-09 12:30 PM
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833

I wonder if there are any heretical/offbeat astrologers who calculate charts such that being born in April makes you an Aquarius, and so forth -- incorporating the precession of the equinoxes, rather than pretending it hadn't happened. There's got be, no?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-14-09 12:34 PM
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834

I believe that sidereal astrology incorporates precession.


Posted by: jms | Link to this comment | 05-14-09 12:38 PM
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835

OT bleg:

Does anyone have an e-mail for Cecily? I'm applying for a position doing research on peer mentorship of people with mental illness and they want to see how they can best reach out to cultural and linguistic minorities including teh deaf and hoh. There's a whole movement in psychiatry about recovery journeys and one of the questions is whether that's even a term that would be appropriate to use when dealing with people who are deaf.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 05-14-09 12:41 PM
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836

I believe that sidereal astrology incorporates precession.

Hot.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 05-14-09 12:41 PM
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837

Indeed it does.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-14-09 12:42 PM
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838

831: Yeah, I think you're right.

832: As I said, I know far more about it than a respectable person should, but then one could plausibly argue my level of respectability anyhow. I went through a period of reading a lot about it several years ago because I had a lot of time on my hands and was intrigued by the math-puzzle aspects (e.g., this planet in Gemini, 2nd house and retrograde is 90 degrees from this planet in Capricorn, 5th house, and the tension of that bad angle is ameliorated by this third planet 45 degrees from each).


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-14-09 12:44 PM
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839

Yeah, I think you're right.

But the Wikipedia link there indicates otherwise.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-14-09 12:47 PM
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840

I was interested as a kid, but more by the history and graphics of it than actually knowing much about what a chart was supposed to mean. The history's neat -- now making a chart is no effort at all, but it took an awful lot of knowledge and calculation before computers. I've forgotten almost everything I've ever known, of course.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-14-09 12:52 PM
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841

A top-ranked chess player from India whom I know had chosen the woman he wanted to marry (a semi-arranged marriage), and she had agreed, and all that remained was to get their charts done. The charts didn't match up so well. They got someone else to read the charts. A match!

They've been married for years now and seem quite happy.


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 05-14-09 1:01 PM
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842

838.2: I know far more about it than a respectable person should

I'm against conventional respectability in the first place, so no worries.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 05-14-09 1:05 PM
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843

That any of those things means anything about your character is, of course, bullshit.

I remain open-minded here. I consider it a modern prejudice that when a simple causal mechanism or causal relationship cannot be found, the correlation itself is disputed. My presumption is that the ancients achieved their astrological insights inductively, with millions of pieces of evidence over thousands of years. I do not dismiss ancient wisdom so arrogantly.

And even if astrology were descriptively false, it could be prescriptively useful, as a arbitrary, rich & deep way for an individual to restructure their life. Like scientology or psychotherapy.

Not that I actually pay any attention to astology.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 05-14-09 2:23 PM
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844

arbitrary, rich & deep way for an individual to restructure their life.

What's the name of the Borges story this reminds me of? Not "The Lottery", I don't think, but something like it.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-14-09 2:27 PM
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845

The Lottery of Babylon.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-14-09 2:35 PM
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846

839: The precession cycle is about 25,800 years, so so you should move a whole month every 2,150 years.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 05-14-09 2:57 PM
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847

The Wikipedia article on the "Age of Aquarius" is a hoot (I assert in my arrogant scientism). Nicholas Campion in "The Book of World Horoscopes" lists various references from mainly astrological sources for the start of the Age of Aquarius What follows is a table of centuries from the 15th to the 37th with the frequency of claims for each century listed. The twentieth century does lead with 29 of the 102 total. Let the sunshine in!


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 05-14-09 3:04 PM
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848

arbitrary, rich & deep way for an individual to restructure their life.

This is how I think of my literalist interpretation of the Chinese zodiac.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 05-14-09 3:28 PM
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849

Did you notice how fast it revealed Cecily's heart to me?


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 05-14-09 3:29 PM
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850

This thread is way too much fun for me to skip, even though it seems to be flagging now...

As I catch up, re: 580 ff.: in case no one came up with this, I was born between midnight & 1 am on June 11th--but births are recorded in Standard Time, so my papers say I was born on June 10th.


Posted by: Rah | Link to this comment | 05-14-09 5:32 PM
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851

845: Great story, thanks for linking it.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 05-14-09 6:56 PM
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