Feb. 6th, 2008 08:06 pm
This one's worth quoting nearly in entirety. I'm glad to see I'm not the only one whom it's been irritating.

Has anyone else noticed that newscasters and commentators seem to feel it is perfectly appropriate to refer to Hillary Clinton as "Hillary" while referring to every other presidential candidate by their last name, or first and last name? This has been bugging me for a couple of weeks, but the clincher was last night. I was watching MSNBC’s coverage of Super Tuesday and in the hour that I watched I heard Senator Clinton referred to as Hillary at least 30 times by a dozen different commentators ranging from conservative to liberal. Barack Obama was called "Barack" once and every other candidate was referred to by their last name or their full name. I find this troubling. Does anyone else see the problem here? To refer to a person by first name only strips away a layer of formality and respect. That’s why school children aren’t allowed to address (most) teachers by first name and (most) parents don’t allow their children to address them by first name. Addressing or referring to someone formally indicates to the listener that this is a person in authority, deserving of respectful treatment. I wonder why it is that the talking heads on television and radio don’t feel that Senator Clinton deserves the same level of respect that the other candidates do.

While pondering this mystery, I thought to myself "Why, they’re doing it so people won’t confuse her with her husband, Bill Clinton." But I realized that doesn’t work because all they need do to resolve the problem is add in her first name –- say it with me now, broadcasters –- "Hillary Clinton". When the current President Bush ran for office, there didn’t seem to be a problem distinguishing him from his father, George Sr. He was sometimes called Dubya, but that was a nickname, not the same as calling him simply George Junior or George W. I did sometimes hear him referred to as George Bush, Jr. or George W. Bush, but they were using his entire name, which is OK -– that’s still respectful.

The only reason I can come up with for the inappropriately familiar use of "Hillary" alone is that she’s a woman. I don’t want to think that’s the cause, but I can’t think of any other reason. Hillary Clinton is a woman with a real shot at being the Democratic candidate for President, and this is probably, at least subconsciously, disturbing to some people. Maybe it’s because we’ve never had a female candidate get this far, so it is simply an unfamiliar, and therefore unsettling, situation. Maybe it started as a conscious attempt by some broadcasters to refer to her in a diminutive way, thus trivializing her role in the election. I don’t know how it started and I’m not advocating a conspiracy –- the BA probably wouldn’t post this if I did! I did a couple of Google searches and I couldn’t find anyone else who’s blogged or commented about this. I may be more sensitive to it because I’m a woman, but I’m betting I’m not the only person, man or woman, who’s noticed it. This whole thing leads me to wonder: if Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton is elected, will the talking heads refer to her as President Hillary?
If you find my anecdotes about students and academia amusing, you can also check out [ profile] rateyourstudent - it's a little more depressing and reflective and a little less humorous than what I include, I believe, but still worth looking at once.


Dec. 7th, 2007 11:09 pm
Blame goes to [ profile] sclerotic_rings for pointing out [ profile] lolscience to me.

FYI, if you are a paid subscriber to LJ, you can now edit YOUR COMMENTS when they are the LAST in a thread (that is, no one, not even yourself, has replied to it).

Wacky humor

Nov. 2nd, 2007 09:31 pm
asterroc: (*Hyuk!*)
For people like [ profile] blue_102, [ profile] gemini6ice and [ profile] the_xtina, it's the [ profile] shitty_advice community. Go wild.

Man crush

Nov. 2nd, 2007 08:04 am
asterroc: (*Hyuk!*)
For [ profile] l0stmyrel1g10n: Phil Plait and Wil Wheaton apparently have mancrushes on each other. If I had your "no homo!" icon I'd be using it now.
And if you haven't already gotten tired of [ profile] postsecret, these might do the trick.

And LOLsecretz. yes, it's LOLcats but w/ PostSecret-style photos instead.
asterroc: (xkcd - Fuck the Cosine)

Sometimes even when you’ve fought your best….
Posted by Wilson on September 16th, 2007 in the Robert Jordan's Blog category

It is with great sadness that I tell you that the Dragon is gone. RJ left us today at 2:45 PM. He fought a valiant fight against this most horrid disease. In the end, he left peacefully and in no pain. In the years he had fought this, he taught me much about living and about facing death. He never waivered in his faith, nor questioned our God’s timing. I could not possibly be more proud of anyone. I am eternally grateful for the time that I had with him on this earth and look forward to our reunion, though as I told him this afternoon, not yet. I love you bubba.

Our beloved Harriet was at his side through the entire fight and to the end. The last words from his mouth were to tell her that he loved her.

Thank each and everyone of you for your prayers and support through this ordeal. He knew you were there. Harriet reminded him today that she was very proud of the many lives he had touched through his work. We’ve all felt the love that you’ve been sending my brother/cousin. Please keep it coming as our Harriet could use the support.

Jason will be posting funeral arrangements.

My sincerest thanks.

Peace and Light be with each of you,

4th of 3

To Catalyst: Never, never loose faith. RJ did not. Harriet hasn’t. I haven’t. Going through what we have, our faith is only strengthened. Besides, if God didn’t exist, we would have never had Jim. We did. God does. Remember my Brother/Cousin, my friend, think of him fondly and glorify God’s name.

Editor’s Note:
The entire staff of would like to extend its most deepest sympathies to Robert Jordan’s family. He touched all of our lives in some way and we wish him the rest and peace he deserves. We will be posting information in the near future about where you can send condolences. Please check the News Section for these updates.

Supposedly he was working on an outline of Book 12. Seeing as his wife was also his editor, I'm hopeful that she and Tor Books will decide she can finish it. Yeah, I'm a bit callous.
No I'm not going to lj-cut this.

The [ profile] parrot_lovers community is really driving me nuts. The mods have a policy there that as long as something is not a direct attack it's okay, and indirect attacks are perfectly fine. So saying "that's a stupid thing to do" is perfectly acceptable, as is yelling at someone in ALL CAPS to "STOP BREEDING!"

For those on my friendslist (or not) who care, here's a few comments I put in threads there lately that help sum up my thoughts.

Seriously, this reminds me of grad school where I was told "your work isn't good enough" and "men need to be taken care of by a woman." Tell me how that's any less insulting or demoralizing than telling a grad student that she's stupid, or that she specifically should be taking care of her man instead of being a grad student. Try and tell me that's not a hostile atmosphere discouraging open communications.

I don't mean that critiques should be discouraged. I mean that *value judgments* should be discouraged. Saying something like "letting a child breed birds is stupid" is a value judgment of the person's actions, and is a subjective opinion statement that cannot be discussed with any real purpose. Saying something like "successfully breeding healthy well-adjusted birds takes a lot of time, energy, financial commitment, and research" is an objective statement that can be backed up with evidence, contains information allowing the person to make an informed decision, and is a debatable point. Value judgments, regardless of whether they're aimed at an individual, the person's actions, or the person's ideas, are not constructive critiques.
Of course I do know I'm welcome to go elsewhere. However, I like this community - and the majority of its members the majority of the time - enough that I think it's worth my working to improve it instead of giving up on it as a lost cause.

*sigh* It's frustrating, just like work drives me nuts at times, but really, it has to be WORTH something to be willing to put up with that frustration.

And in the end, in a comment to mod [ profile] bloolark:

I personally feel that borderline comments by members of this community should be responded to by other members publicly in the comments, in a calm and rational way ..., while the policy as it now reads discourages that in favor of our tattle-tale-ing to the mods. Tattle-tale-ing leads to a climate of fear, where the mods are an ultimate authority. Self-policing leads to a stronger community where we can come to a consensus of what is acceptable. What I was hoping you would put in this post was encouraging members to be respectful of each other, and instead what I read was encouraging members to keep their mouths shut when they are insulted or notice other members insulting each other, unless they want to act as a whistle-blower.

BTW, I appreciate your efforts to make yourself clear, and to make this an open community where we can all speak our minds. I happen to disagree with how you're going about it, which leads me to continue to appreciate your efforts to hear me out and try to understand my point of view. As I mentioned in comments elsewhere, I value this community as a wonderful resource, and I feel it's worth my time and effort to work on improving it. I've been tempted to leave a couple times since I joined a year ago (hadn't mentioned it b/c I saw no need to do so), but I reminded myself that this is a good GREAT community with people who care immensely about birds and are very knowledgeable about them, and instead decided to channel the frustration into trying to get myself heard. Once again, thank you for your time and efforts, and for listening to me even when we don't agree.

My desire for self-moderation by community members is inspired by this saga.
asterroc: (xkcd - Escher)
CNN reports that Wikinews reports that Nancy Benoit's death at the hands of her husband and WWE wrestler Chris Benoit was announced on Wikipedia prior to the police actually knowing about it. It's making my head spin. It's sad when a "trusted" news source is getting its news from wikis.
[ profile] czarina69 - no wait, it was [ profile] amavia, she must've yoinked [ profile] czarina69's fave icon from somewhere - tagged me to ...

List seven songs you are into right now, no matter what the genre, whether they have words, or even if they're not any good, but they must be songs you're really enjoying now. Post these instructions in your LiveJournal along with your seven songs. Then tag seven other people to see what they're listening to. I don't perpetuate chain letters.

(In no particular order)
  1. The Water is Wide - folk song (b/c I found sheet music for it in a pile of papers)

  2. Sexy - Justin Timberlake (b/c it was the song to which the bridal party at Saturday's wedding entered the reception. I actually hate the song, but it's stuck in my head.)

  3. Dance, Soterius Johnson, Dance - Jonathan Coulton (we were seated with a good conversationalist who was asking me about my musical tastes, and this one was on my CD on the drive home)

  4. Hope (vol. 2) - Apocalyptica (I recently realized they weren't just a cover band anymore)

  5. Finite Simple Group (of Order Two) - Klein Four (who can't go for some dork rock?)

  6. Come On - Lifestyle (the lead singer is also in the good band Freezepop, but none of their stuff is currently stuck in my head)

  7. The Miranda Lullabye - Paul and Storm (the remaining half of Da Vinci's Notebook; I knew Jonathan Coulton had "made it" when Paul and Storm opened for him and not the other way around, and it's confirmed every time I tell people I saw JoCo and P&S live and they say "JoCo's awesome, but who's P&S?")

Also not stuck in my head, but worth an honorable mention are the artists Steven Zelin and Dorks in Space b/c they're friends and are pretty amusing.

You're welcome to do this meme or not.

Do people usually write their music "Song - Artist", or "Artist - Song"? I usually do the former, I think b/c I feel the song title will tell you the artist, but I see the latter a lot.
asterroc: (xkcd - Escher)
LJ is about to sell Permanent Accounts, from June 21 - June 28, for $150. Should I take the plunge? Some of what LJ's done in the last year or two I'm a little uncomfortable with, like having ad accounts, and the mass suspension of questionable accounts at the pressure of a special interest group, but I understand why they did both. What do y'all think? What're y'all doing? What would Escher do?

[Poll #1006997]
Wikipedia vs. LJ!

And for more LOLz, check the history on that section, it seems to be changing every 5 min.

η: Heh, and even the name of the section changed, so I changed my link. :-P

Geek quote

May. 14th, 2007 08:52 am
asterroc: (Astro - H-alpha)
We have quarks for friends: Some strange, some charmed, some up, some down, some top, some bottom. --[ profile] derspatchel (here)
To anyone who's LJ friends with [ profile] meredithanne42 or [ profile] unofischal, I got an email from the latter this afternoon saying that it's happening!

Meredith started having contractions at 3:30 this morning, and we checked her into the birthing center at FMC around noon. Her due date is April 22, so this was a little surprising, but she's not so early that there will be problems of any kind. Contractions are about four minutes apart! And we still need to decide on a name...

Updates will be forthcoming!
From [ profile] gemini6ice

1. Look at your profile and my profile, and compare our list of friends.
2. Choose one person from your list who isn't on my friends list, whom you think I'd enjoy reading.
3. Post that person ([ profile] blahblahalskdjf) as a reply to this post.
4. I will reply with the name of a friend on my friends list whom you I think you should read.
5. (optional) Post a copy of this on your own journal.
Listen to this song a couple times. Read the lyrics there too.

Then read the explanation.

Note to self: make a music icon. Grade for the next 48-60 hours without sleeping, THEN make a music icon.
[ profile] weis206 says that CNN says that officials say that John Edwards says he's running for President in 2008.

ETA: Psst, pass it on. [ profile] sammka did.



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