Saturday, June 20

The Boys of Summer are Strong.

Gerald Narciso:

Brian Campbell did not have a Wikipedia page as of Friday night, but the amateur is making a name for himself at the U.S. Open.
On Thursday, Campbell shot a three-under 67, including seven birdies, finishing two strokes behind the leaders.

“I just wanted to treat it like any other tournament, not really think too much of it being the U.S. Open,” Campbell, 22, said.

Campbell competed in last year’s Open at Pinehurst, missing the cut by one stroke. He recently graduated from the University of Illinois, where he was an all-American. Athleticism runs in the family. His father, Don, a native of Quebec, played professional hockey in Europe. His brother Derek was drafted by the Philadelphia Phillies in 2014.

“It’s been pretty surreal, actually,” said Campbell’s father. “But he plays well, and he likes tough courses, so we’re not overly surprised.”

Campbell continued his strong play Friday morning. After back-to-back birdies on the second and third holes, including a spectacular 23-foot putt on No. 3, his gallery grew to 100 from his 10 family members and friends. At one point, Campbell was five under par, but he then struggled to a 72 and was one under for the tournament.

Though some of the marquee names on the tour have corporate logos on their clothes and equipment, Campbell was using a slightly haggard orange-and-blue Fighting Illini golf bag.

The last amateur to win the U.S. Open was John Goodman in 1933.

“I’m just trying to stay focused on what I am doing. I mean there’s a lot of golf left to play,” Campbell said.

Play in the Sunshine.

We gonna love all our enemies
'til the mirror falls off the wall...
We're gonna rock him.
We're gonna roll him.
We're gonna teach him that Love will make him tall.
Well that's cool, 'cause one day every day will be Judgment Day (in some way)...
We're gonna Play in the Sunshine.
(Turn all the lights up to  10...)*

“Although my grandfather and the other victims died at the hands of hate, this is proof, everyone’s plea for your soul, is proof that they lived in love and their legacies will live in love. So hate won’t win. And I just want to thank the court for making sure that hate doesn’t win.”
Chris Singleton, whose mother, Rev. Sharonda Coleman-Singleton, was among those killed at a Charleston, SC, church, tells media 'love is always stronger than hate. So we just love the way my mom would and the hate won't be anywhere close to what love is'

Drummer, drummer:
Do your thing.
Play In The Sunshine lyrics © Universal Music Publishing Group

Thursday, June 4

"He's growing more confident every game."

"He doesn't seem to have a heartbeat. He's so calm. He's Finnish cold."

"He's one of the most talented guys I see, watching him every day," Blackhawks forward Marian Hossa said of Teuvo Teravainen.

"But coming to this team, there are so many skilled players, they decided that instead of playing only a few minutes they put him on a minor team so he could play lots of minutes. Obviously, it's paying off. He's playing with such confidence.

Teravainen scored his third goal of the postseason to tie the game at 13:28 and then set up the game-winner. He was in and out of the lineup in the regular season and has been a healthy scratch a few times in the Stanley Cup Playoffs, but the 20-year-old has steadily improved this spring and is evolving into the type of player his elite prospect status suggested.
That's Corey Masisak, staff writer, reporting.
The Lightning were 41-0-2 when leading after two periods in the regular season and postseason combined. They were 9-0 this postseason when scoring first.

Tampa Bay held Chicago to 13 shots on goal through two periods, but the Blackhawks dominated the third and eventually broke through.

"I don't know if 'come to expect it' is the right way to put it, but we certainly believe in ourselves in our locker room," Blackhawks forward Patrick Sharp said. "We're never out of any game despite the score or how it looks out there."

Wednesday, June 3

Nature's Beauty.

or, Tuesday Evening Update.

In my humble opinion,
a sunrise beats a sunset,
but a moonrise tops them all!

(If you missed the full moon coming up last night, pink and grand, try again this evening.)


If you ever go across the sea to Ireland,
Then maybe at the closing of your day,
you will sit and watch the moon rise over Claddagh,
and see the sun go down on Galway Bay...

Tuesday, June 2

Call Me, Caitlyn.

* I guess you have to buy the magazine to find out the phone number inside...

Seriously though, I am disappointed at the pornographied image chosen for the coming-out cover.

I was hoping for an athletic-like female Bruce Jenner. Kinda 70s style. A Lindsay, say, or a Cheryl.

Not another overdone Hollywood woman, all trying to look like a childish Bratz doll.

Is that how we define the 21st century American woman? No thanks.

Caitlyn... The youthful name is telling... I feel for his younger daughters. Seems like he's not willing to grow up, as a man or a woman.

Competitive like that.

Monday, June 1

Full Moon Out There.

Full Strawberry Moon...
tomorrow night, officially.

ADDED: Also in the overnight hours, the Patriot Act expired!
Please, no more referring to the United States as the homeland.

Lowest-common-denominator thinking applied to military strategy* and domestic surveillance techniques appears to do more internal damage to the country's fabric than any blows inflicted domestically in the culture wars. Just saying. (First amendment rights and all...) Trust, but verify. Verify hard...

* "Hey kids, let's put on a show! Shocking and awesome? Now where shall we stage this thing? Iraq? Well, it's not like they attacked us or anything, but this Big Dog is ambling off the provincial porch, spreading things we got here -- especially guns and weaponry -- over there! Missionary work, sharing like. God bless the guns, and thank 'em for their service."

It's over.

Sunday, May 31

12:52 PM ET
Beau Biden’s Death Triggers an Outpouring of Grief



Business Day
Moments ago
Obama’s Push for Trade Deal Faces Bipartisan Peril in House


Isn't the art of politics the art of making things happen? And isn't Joe Biden considered to be exceptionally skilled at that art? I wonder if that's too ... Chicago to put the two together like that. Informal politicking at wakes and services, deaths uniting the formerly estranged. Stranger things have happened.

My Kind of Town.

Chicago is.

Led by captain Jonathan Toews' two goals, scored in succession in the first period, the Blackhawks' reached the 2015 Stanley Cup Final with a 5-3 victory against the Anaheim Ducks that decided the best-of-7 series.

"I think you definitely feed off the confidence that it gives you," said Toews, who started the game with Patrick Kane on his right wing for the first time in the series. "You want to consider yourself that type of player at the end of the day, but it helps when you're alongside guys that have those same intangibles."

Aside from Toews again rising to occasion with a special game, the Blackhawks got a goal each from forward Brandon Saad, right wing Marian Hossa and defenseman Brent Seabrook.

They got three assists from Kane, two from defenseman Duncan Keith, and two from center Brad Richards, who played as Hossa's right wing in place of Kane.

"They are world-class players," Richards said of Toews and Kane. "It's not like … I mean, I got to play with Marian Hossa instead [of Kane]. For me, it wasn't a disappointing move. That's what so great about this team. If it helps and changes the balance … [Hossa] scored a couple big goals and [the top line] scored big goals. We're all pulling in the same direction here, so whatever works."
"They have that ability to rise to the occasion and just find a way no matter what," defenseman Duncan Keith* said. "Whether it's just that belief, but always just knowing, you know, they're going to get it done, they're going to find a way ... I think that rubs off on a lot of guys."

Sunday w/Sandburg:
Come and show me another city with lifted head singing so proud to be alive and coarse and strong and cunning.
Flinging magnetic curses amid the toil of piling job on job, here is a tall bold slugger set vivid against the little soft cities;
Fierce as a dog with tongue lapping for action, cunning as a savage pitted against the wilderness,
Building, breaking, rebuilding,
Under the smoke, dust all over his mouth, laughing with white teeth,
Under the terrible burden of destiny laughing as a young man laughs,
Laughing even as an ignorant fighter laughs who has never lost a battle,
Bragging and laughing that under his wrist is the pulse, and under his ribs the heart of the people,

* “He’s kind of a freak as far as his metabolism and conditioning level,” Chicago Coach Joel Quenneville said. “I think the more he plays, the more efficient he is, the more he gets going.”

Jonathan Toews:

"There was no easy games. There was nothing given to us. There was no moments in this series were there any lulls, where we felt Anaheim maybe didn't play their best hockey and we got away with it. We felt like we had to earn everything against that team. That was an incredible test for both teams"
Toews scored two goals in the opening minutes, Corey Crawford made 35 saves and Chicago roared into the Stanley Cup Finals with a 5-3 victory over the Anaheim Ducks on Saturday night.

Brandon Saad, Marian Hossa and Brent Seabrook also scored for the Blackhawks, who will play for their third NHL championship in six seasons when they face the Tampa Bay Lightning beginning Wednesday night in Florida.
The Blackhawks have defied conventional NHL parity to reach three Stanley Cup Finals and five conference finals in a seven-year stretch under coach Joel Quenneville. That's because their stars are unmatched: From Toews and Kane to Seabrook and Duncan Keith, nobody knows how to win like Chicago.
"Last year was a tough loss, (and) this year was even worse," Ducks forward Patrick Maroon said. "We're one game away. We had them on the ropes. We're going up 3-2 in their barn. You saw what happened there. Then we're looking better because we have home-ice advantage and can play in front of our fans, and ... I don't know. I have no words."
The harder the hits,
the stronger the soul?

Saturday, May 30

A Smile While the Tears Fall...

Our thoughts are with Vice President Joe Biden tonight, whose 46-year-old son succumbed to brain cancer and died today.  An attorney and politician in his own right, Joseph Robinette Biden III, known as Beau, leaves behind a wife and two children, at home.

Beau Biden was three years old in 1972 when his mother and sister were killed in a car crash.  Beau and his brother Hunter were also riding in the car, but survived.

Biden joined the Delaware National Guard in 2003, working as an attorney in the JAG Corps -- Judge Advocate General.  He deployed to Iraq in October 2008, one day after his father injected new life into the Obama campaign, scoring a much-needed debate win for the team.*

Beau Biden returned to America from Iraq in January 2009 to watch his father be sworn in as vice president, alongside President Obama.  He immediately returned to Iraq, and completed his year of active duty.

Biden was elected as Delaware's Attorney General in 2006, and there was speculation he might one day be a senator.  But only on his own terms, his father said in 2008.

"It is no secret that I believe my son, Attorney General, would make a great United States Senator just as I believe he has been a great attorney general. But Beau has made it clear from the moment he entered public life that any office he sought he would earn on his own ... [I]f he chooses to run for the Senate in the future, he will have to run and win on his own. He wouldn't have it any other way."
 Beau Biden is gone now; he'll never be a senator.  He's presumably reuniting with his mother and sister in the heavens, and his family here at home no doubt are missing him tonight.

But for every tear, there will be a smile;  in all the grief, the strong memories. Biden is Catholic like that, Irish Catholic...

For every thought that maybe Beau Biden was taken too soon, an acknowledgement of the 43 good years he lived on, after the car accident where he was spared.  His son and daughter, his wife, his father and brother and step-mother and sister -- you don't need to know a man to know their pain is fresh and real.

Lots of lives lost lately.
Black lives, white lives, refugee lives, children's lives.
I know there is often resentment with death, a lingering bitterness at the unfairness of life -- dreams unrealized, plans left undone.

Somehow, this one feels like a death in the family, our American family, Joe's son, even though Beau Biden was never in the national spotlight as a familiar face.

My hope is that this one wakes us up collectively -- rekindles a fire in an administration that appears to be running out the clock.

I hope this brush with death injects a fresh fighting spirit in this country -- make a damn difference, and realize that we the living still have time left to change, with small-c change just as effectively inaugurating a new day as all the pomp and circumstance of the hopeful days past.

It's a Call to Action is what it is...
No peace prize, just a simple human death.
Make of that what you will.

*  Joe Biden focused his talking points on the proposed policies of presidential candidate John McCain, giving debate opponent Sarah Palin a polite pass.  A week earlier, candidate Obama had appeared lackluster in his opening debate against McCain;  Obama rebounded in the final debates..


Dillo Day Update.

Due to inclement weather and in consultation with the United States Coast Guard...



Repeat:  Stay off the beach and the rocks.  Closed.
The rocks on the beach are closed today.  Lol.

ADDED:  I'm not there.  Just vicariously following...



It Gets Better, Indeed.

The tenure-track Stanford professor who uncovered scientific fraud as a Berkeley graduate student by a fellow researcher at UCLA tells the story of his journey to silence his doubts, uncover some true facts, and reveal his conclusions.

Dramatic stuff, especially the ending, which attempts to explain why he felt almost a personal calling to persevere as he did.

“Part of the message that I wanted to send to potential disclosers of the future is that you have a duty to come out about this, you’ll be rewarded if you do so in a responsible way, and you don’t want to live with the regret that I do that I didn’t act on it [sooner]. This is sort of my It Gets Better project for people with suspicions about research.”

Thursday, May 28



"It has (been) hard-fought," Crawford said. "Tons of good hockey (with) lots of great plays — and physical. The games are so close, who knows, someone could have won in four. It has been a battle."

After the Hawks jumped to a 3-0 lead midway through the second, the Ducks refused to back down and made things very interesting with goals from Patrick Maroon and Clayton Stoner. Shaw's goal with 3:32 remaining in the third put the Ducks away and the forward further sealed the deal with an empty-netter to send the crowd of 22,089 home happy.  That concluded another chapter in an already sensational series.

"It has been exciting for the fans for sure and for us too," Ducks center Kyle Palmieri said. "Triple-OT, double-OT and Matt (Beleskey) winning (Game 5 on Monday night) in the first minute of OT. It's a tough conference and the two best teams are going to go at it Saturday night for a chance to play for the Stanley Cup."

Imagine the finesse of Steph Curry ... on skates!
Ducks players have made no secret about their strategy to beat Chicago: Check them into the off-season. They have said over and over that the longer the series goes, the more the skilled Blackhawks would feel the cumulative effects of those hits.
 Entering Game 6, they held a staggering 262-181 advantage in hits. The Ducks were the aggressors again early in the game, with Ryan Getzlaf delivering a bone-crunching hit on Marcus Kruger that elicited a groan from the sellout crowd of 22,089. Later in the period, Stoner knocked Patrick Sharp into the boards.
On this night, though, Chicago hit back, nearly matching the Ducks check for check; the final count was 43-38 in favor of Anaheim.

“That’s kind of been the talk all series, that they’ve been trying to wear us down and outplay us on the physical side,” Toews said. “I think there’s always confidence in our group that we can respond to that and turn the tables a little bit.”
 Like with the ladies grinding it out on the hardwoods, 
hockey is appealing to more diverse demographics these days (weak ankles, my ass*), including women.

I'll take logic and reasoning over brute force any day, but there's no denying the lessons to be learned in sports.  Like the old saying goes, "Part of the art of being a woman is knowing when not to be too much of a lady..."

Have a great weekend; 
plan to be offline myself
as things are heating up here...

*    "There were pressures on them to be fighters, but this generation of black player is free to be who they are," added Cecil Harris, a former hockey beat writer and the author of "Breaking the Ice: The Black Experience in Professional Hockey."

"The pressure isn't there for a big, strong black guy like Dustin Byfuglien to be a goon. He can be himself, and he's an All-Star this year."

Read more here:

Wednesday, May 27

Drivers Wanted. zoom Zoom.

I caught Mad Max at the 7:10 pm showing on $5 Tuesday.
Well worth the admission price, as most impressive to me was seeing generations of women* work together  for a serious life-and-death cause.**  You don't see that much.
Amazing action, only one or two scenes that plod, focusing on quiet moments.  Otherwise, just sincere looks backed up by deeds.

I liked it. Thumbs up.
Sometimes, that's enough.
That's your legacy of love.


* Jill Abramson was on my mind midway through, when Max and Furiousa came upon the older survivors tribe in the desert. 
** Their own.

Tuesday, May 26

Integrity Matters. or, "Data Set, Data Set..."

"Who's Got the Data Set?"

The New York Times offers a fine follow-up on the good-looking California junior scientist who apparently faked his test results, and has gone underground rather than producing the data base of people he claims were surveyed in his amazingly persuasive award-winning social science study undertaken with a New York professor.

The scientific community’s system for vetting new findings, built on trust, is poorly equipped to detect deliberate misrepresentations. Faculty advisers monitor students’ work, but there are no standard guidelines governing the working relationship between senior and junior co-authors.

The reviewers at journals may raise questions about a study’s methodology or data analysis, but rarely have access to the raw data itself, experts said.
“It is simply unacceptable for science to continue with people publishing on data they do not share with others,” said Uri Simonsohn, an associate professor at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania.
“Journals, funding agencies and universities must begin requiring that data be publicly available.”

This is cheating the system just the same as Tom Brady was undermining the game of football when the pigskins were being deflated in his name...

Cheating isn't cool.
We need an attitude adjustment in this country that recognizes this, before all foundations of trust are undermined and all results are questioned in a society of ignorant skeptics.  (We're not there yet.)

And that's not a society to shoot for, is it?

Monday, May 25

Sports Is Life.

The Blackhawks and the Ducks are all tied up, going into Anaheim tonight.
In our politically correct world today, I just really like the last line of this quote. 

Anger is underrated, if you ask me.  Polite people rarely make progress, when heels are dug in.

"Sure, we're ticked off and everything else.  But we've got a game in two days. If you dwell on it, you're going to dwell on it (until) you're down 3-2. You've just got to get angry and go after it."
Go Hawks.
Get 'er done.

Results matter more than mouthing niceties, and falling back into your loved ones' arms when you fail to advance.

Memorial Day at the althouse blog.

The poor professor doesn't take the holidays off.

Instead, she throws red meat to her carefully cultivated conservative commenters, then runs away -- again, and turns off the comments for "moderation" when she can't persuade by words, and the commentariat turns on her.

Ms. Althouse?
Please stop helping gay people.
You've really done enough.

Just celebrate Memorial Day like the rest of us, and give one day a rest from the gay marriage "fight".

You see, you can afford to cut and run when the going gets tough, and people respond to your thoughts and words with their own, not to your liking. Others -- in the classroom, in the workplace, in the home -- don't have that option: to just stick their fingers in their ears when the conversations turn honest, and hateful.

The saddest thing is: her blog and her commenters reflect poorly on the University of Wisconsin, and everything the Law-in-Action tradition is supposed to espouse.

If you have to go running from the conversation, it's likely one you probably weren't strong enough, or educated enough, to start in the first place.


ADDED: Awwwww.... the common-commenter HUSBAND of the widely praised law professor steps into the thread to defend/protect her. You'd think that as a law professor, experience with the power of words, she's be capable of continuing to freely argue her case in her own words. *(remember: ann delights in dirty talk on her blog too, and she is no stranger to vulgar insults, directly addressed to commenters who disagree. That's the rough-and-tough verbal nature of her blog: she dishes it out daily.)
Meade said...

"BTW: Just to be clear, Ann, my comment about you being full of shit on this was meant to be disrespectful to your opinion, not to you personally."

Husband Meade: If that's true, John Henry, then you need to learn to write more clearly. Try this: "Your opinion is full of shit." Or: "I am full of shit but I'm going to leave a comment anyway."

The husband (not a law professor himself) steps in to take over the argument, based on namecalling, not substantive argument. That's not sweet so much as just plain sad. Will he be accompanying her to class now too, in case students speak up and Ms. Althouse gets too flustered to respond on her own?

Now, in a shutdown threads comment, in which all views have to be pre-approved and moderated, Ann remembers that she is a professor at Wisconsin:
Ann Althouse said...
"Suppose a university advertised, "Your views, whatever they are, will be tolerated here." Is that a disinvitation or its opposite."

It's a middle position. In a repressive society, it would be welcome.

In America, students expect something more like: Whatever may be the limitations which trammel inquiry elsewhere we believe the great state University of Wisconsin should ever encourage that continual and fearless sifting and winnowing by which alone the truth can be found.

Getting closer, annie girl. Now: don't just type or mouth those words, put them into ACTION professor baby. Don't hide behind your husband, or your hurt feelings.

Open up the thread, allow everyone to their say, and "encourage that continual and fearless sifting and winnowinug by which alone the truth can be found."

You see, tossing red meat, and then running away when your conservative commenters respond, is NOT the Wisconsin way. We know you've been coddled with the tenure, never having to actually argue the facts to a win on their face, but if you can't see the hypocrisy in quoting the Wisconsin motto in a closed thread, you're closer to retirement than you think.

Why not allow that there are more fearless voices, who could respond in kind to the bigoted assumptions you are so nicely trying to converse with? (Without our husbands jumping in to finish the job...)

FINALLY: I wish Mrs. meade would speak for herself in the first person, and stop putting words into gay people's mouths that are her own:
Speech is important because of the way it reveals thoughts, but some thoughts, when revealed, with affect what people think of you. You don't say everything you think. You lie and you dissemble. You bullshit. You flatter.
You are coddled with the tenure.
You are speaking for yourself here.
OWN IT on your own behalf.
The rest of us don't have the luxury of walking away, moving out West when the seeds of hatred you have planted here in Wisconsin come into bloom.

Remembering Pat Tillman.

Happy Memorial Day.

Good will conquer evil,
and the Truth outs.

Then-Lieutenant Colonel Ralph Kauzlarich, Regimental Executive Officer at Forward Operating Base Salerno on Khost, Afghanistan, under which Tillman was serving at the time of his death, and who led the second investigation into Tillman's death, made statements about the Tillman family's search for the truth based on Tillman's atheism.

In comments to ESPN, Kauzlarich said: "These people have a hard time letting it go. It may be because of their religious beliefs" and "When you die, I mean, there is supposedly a better life, right? Well, if you are an atheist and you don't believe in anything, if you die, what is there to go to? Nothing. You are worm dirt. So for their son to die for nothing and now he is no more... I do not know how an atheist thinks, I can only imagine that would be pretty tough."
Rest In Peace.

Saturday, May 23

Every Year, a Different Design.

Sometimes, I admit, I act like a sloth -- mostly, I blame the reading... the passive nature of the reading.  And there's no denying, I am a procrastinator. (I hope family accepts birthday cards, written but never mailed, months late... )

But my garden:  the timing only gets better each year.

I used to take pictures. I was so impressed, not by myself or my work so much, but by the transformation: the church gifts me a plot of dirt, cost free w/just a promise to tithe the first 10 percent of my garden proceeds back to the church to help feed the needy and those unable to garden themselves. Then, a few hours work, the gift of rain and sunshine: next thing you know, you've got a whole 'nother world out there.

The year I first grew my own broccoli... then, even better, broccolini... Snip, snip, fresh greens through the summer.

I don't do fancy anymore.
 It's too easy to buy from the Hmong farmers, who truck their produce in from Menomonie, Bloomer or Eau Claire into the Rice Lake farmers market Saturday morning. Nothing fancy about that market either, which is good, as the prices remain dirt cheap, pretty much. Flowers too.

But I do like to put in a crop of Roma tomatoes, as they keep well and are known as sauce tomatoes. And my big taste discovery is Thai Basil, I can't get enough of the flavor. You can freeze it, and add it to everything, all winter long...

I never have much luck with garlic -- the bulbs grow, and multiply, but they end up being so small. Likely it's because we get the plots assigned every spring, it is tilled and re-assigned, and there's no opportunity to let it winter over and grow larger. STill, I'm putting it in again this year, as I like the fresh taste...

They say it will rain tonight, or tomorrow and Monday, which is traditional for Memorial Days in these parts, it seems.

So, no photos, friends,
and I'm just putting down the black plastic today, and sowing some peas and beans (it's not smart to put the tomatoes in until June 1st, at least, in these parts; even with no freeze, they don't grow much in the cold ground...) But it's good to pull the tools and stakes out of storage, and I have been religiously watering my starter plants inside the garage I rent, rotating the spinach and lettuce, and basil in the windows, and pulling in the tomato pots when it gets too nippy at night.

But if you know that feeling of the beginning days of a garden,
you know the natural feeling of putting in the work, and eventually, reaping what you have sowed.  No guarantees, and I do spray some nasty-smelling deer repellant (too ensconced in a wide-open farm field to worry about rabbits or smaller critters, usually...) to protect my plants when they are small, but pretty much, the reward is worth the effort.

Friday, May 22

A Loaf of Bread... a Container of Milk...

and a Stick of Butter...

(Some things just stick in your craw for 40+ years.  Like... the shopping list on Sesame Street!)

And also this ("It's the plumber. I've come to fix the sink."), which definitely has Electric Company written all over it... ("Hey you guys!!)

Happy Friday!
Happy Memorial Day!*

"Who are you?
What do you do?
How are you?
Let's hear from you...
We need you!
So won't you ZOOM-ZOOM-ZOOM a-ZOOM?


* I believe the soldiers who served and died in America's wars for freedom would want us to get out in our communities, celebrate our continuing freedoms, and yes, be happy.  It's the least we can do in their memory.  I honestly don't think the soldiers who served in the World Wars, or especially VietNam, would want everyone sitting around Monday with long faces in somber tribute...

They didn't die for that.

The solders who served and lived through the most recent wars probably have the most reckoning to do this weekend, wondering if their sacrifices and contributions -- and those of their fallen comrades -- in retrospect, will be valued when we see how the territories they fought in are faring now, while we remain safe here at home.

Wednesday, May 20

Blue-Collar Mike...

Gets The Job Done!

#SoleSurvivor  #HappyDance

Irregularities in LaCour (2014)
David Broockman, Assistant Professor, Stanford 
Joshua Kalla, Graduate Student, UC Berkeley
Peter Aronow, Assistant Professor, Yale University,
May 19, 2015

Summary:  We report a number of irregularities in the replication dataset posted for LaCour and Green (Science “When contact changes minds: An experiment on transmission of support for gay equality,” 2014) that jointly suggest the dataset (LaCour 2014) was not collected as described. These irregularities include baseline outcome data that is statistically indistinguishable from a national survey and over-time changes that are unusually small and indistinguishable from perfectly normally distributed noise. Other elements of the dataset are inconsistent with patterns typical in randomized experiments and survey responses and/or inconsistent with the claimed design of the study.

Read the whole thing.

You Can't Lie in Science...

If you're good-looking,  try consulting, but don't go trying to fake your way through academia...
Eventually, you'll trip yourself up, even if you're good-looking, persuasive and think you will get away with it.

When Contact Changes Minds: Two Longitudinal Field Experiments on Transmission of Support for Gay Equality

(With Donald P. Green), Science.
Abstract: Can a single conversation change minds on divisive social issues, such as same-sex marriage? We report results from a randomized placebo-controlled trial assessing whether gay or straight messengers were effective at encouraging voters to support same-sex marriage and whether attitude change persisted and spread to others in voters’ social networks. The results, measured by an ostensibly unrelated panel survey, show that both gay and straight canvassers produced large effects initially, but only gay canvassers’ effects persisted in three-week, six-week, and nine-month follow-ups. We also find strong evidence of within-household transmission of opinion change, but only in the wake of conversations with gay canvassers. A follow-up experiment demonstrates that openly gay canvassers only affect support for same-sex marriage and ratings of gay people when the topic of conversation is gay equality. These findings suggest the theoretical importance of contact with minorities coupled with discussion of policy issues pertinent to them.


ADDED:  This last paragraph is also concerning...  Seems he persuaded liberal and conservative editors, alike.  Never underestimate the power of a good-looking man playing professor:
I am a Ph.D. candidate at UCLA.  I research political behavior, public opinion, and media; using experimentation, longitudinal panel surveys, and social network analysis to study the ways in which persuasive communications influence voters.  
My research has been published in Science and Political Communication, as well as featured in: This American LifeThe New York Times, The Wall Street JournalThe Washington Post,  The Los Angeles Times, Science FridayThe UpshotBloomberg PoliticsThe EconomistUSA TodayVox, and HuffingtonPost.
I am very impressed with this paper,” said Todd Rogers, an assistant professor of public policy at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government and a founding director of the Analyst Institute, a voter research group that helps Democratic candidates. Mr. Rogers, who was not involved in the research, said: “There’s a whole infrastructure across the political spectrum devoted to changing people’s attitude and beliefs on important topics, and this has obvious implications. You want a messenger for whom the issue is of personal relevance.”

And look at all those bullets under the Awards and Fellowships section... Impressive!

Cold Steel On Ice.

ANAHEIM, Calif. — The game ended at least a dozen times — a post here, a crossbar there, a padded shoulder here, a gloved fingertip there. Sami Vatanen rang one off the crossbar at one end in overtime, then rang one off the crossbar at the other end in the second overtime. Corey Perry drew iron, too, was turned aside point-blank by Corey Crawford, and fired wide from the doorstep. Patrick Kane was robbed. Antoine Vermette was stuffed. Andrew Shaw was denied. Bryan Bickell was stopped, but, oh, just barely.

Crawford made 60 saves, a career-high in a virtuoso effort. Duncan Keith played nine seconds shy of 50 minutes, also a career-high. Frederik Andersen made 53 saves for the Ducks, marvelous in his own right. The Hawks withstood 71 hits, attempted 115 shots, took 112 faceoffs, and dodged countless bullets, all to even the Western Conference final at 1-1. Game 3 is Thursday at the United Center, if any of these guys have the legs to make it through warmups.

“It’s mostly relief,” said defenseman Johnny Oduya, who played 46:06. “You’re happy, but we know, too, it’s one game. This was almost two games, but it only counts as one.”

It was a historic game for the Hawks, but only barely. It was the Hawks’ fourth triple-overtime game in the past three postseasons, and their second in the past month. They know the drill — take off your skates at intermission to mitigate the soreness, eat fruit and grab a snack, drink plenty of water, stretch as much as you can. And more than anything, don’t get too caught up in the drama and the tension — the excruciating, agonizing, beautiful tension.

“Eat, drink, stay mentally focused more than anything,” Sharp said. “I think that’s the toughest thing. You’re thinking about the game all day, and end up playing for four, five, six hours. It wears on you. We’ve got a veteran group that’s been down that path before, and thankfully we came away with a win.”

Memorial Day Weekend is Coming.

So here's a mid=week PSA for blog readers.



“Any experienced paddler wears a P.F.D. all the time, every time, period,” said Brian Grahn, who owns Hudson River Expeditions, an outfitter in Cold Spring, N.Y., referring to a personal flotation device, or life jacket. “You would never see a professional paddler without it, whether you’re on a pond or in the Mediterranean. It’s a big deal.”
"Don't Just Pack It,
Wear Your Jacket."

(Have you ever tried putting on your jacket after the boat overturns, especially if you conk your head on a river rock falling into the water?  Neither have I. )

Saturday, May 16

Poorly Performing School Districts, not Prejudice.

Jamelle Bouie Jamelle Bouie

Jamelle Bouie is a Slate staff writer covering politics, policy, and race.
As I noted in a Wednesday column, “... only 25 percent of white respondents said they would live in a neighborhood where one-half of their neighbors were black.”
At the same time, this polling doesn’t tell us why.
I implied prejudice, but there are other options.

It could be ethnocentrism—positive feelings about your racial compatriots.

Or it could be a class difference, where whites avoid black neighbors—and black neighborhoods—out of real or perceived differences in the quality of homes, schools, services, and amenities.

And if so, there’s a related question: Do blacks act similarly, avoiding black or significantly black neighborhoods for the same reason? 

If he wants an honest answer, let me give him one: 
plenty of people, black and white, value the quality of their local school districts.  For whatever reason -- culture, poverty (even in the middle classes?), the legacy of slavery *cough, cough* -- when the population of a public school district begins to shift to majority black students, the test scores and quality of the classroom education received in those schools often drop.*

Even in "good" solidly middle-class districts, it seems when the black population tips to majority numbers, the collective school district either does not value keeping the quality of the academic programs up (b/c of the stigma of "acting white"?). or is incapable of it.  White people, and black, as well as others, see the decline in school quality, and then the accompanying decline in property values, which so often are based on the quality of the public schools.  (More and more in this country, you need a 21st century education to compete, if you're not in the inheriting classes...)

Retirees, empty nesters, singles and gays without children, can remain living in these neighborhoods.  But too often, young white -- and black -- families read the tea leaves and sell.  Private schools at the large high school level can be an option for families with school-age children remaining in the district, if the public elementary "feeder" schools are still capable of providing a disciplined academic base to build upon.

But who -- black or white --is willing to sacrifice their own children's education and potential futures by sending them to a majority black public school with dismal test scores, non-challenging curricula, and disciplinary troubles in the hallways? **

Speaking honestly, and with significant background study of the issue:  That's one reason, Mr. Bouie, perhaps why "only 25 percent of white respondents said they would live in a neighborhood where one-half of their neighbors were black.”

They simply can't afford it.


* Why?  Back to Mr. Bouie, and the stats analysis, on this one...
** Believing this behavior to be racist, and not rational, is too easy and misses the point...

Tuesday, May 12

"What are she and Huma doing?"

"Are they robbing that place?"

It's the voice that cracks me up...
"Ah they rah-bin that place?"

Make it a great midweek, people.
Be an original in your works and deeds... Yes you can.

Monday, May 11

"Aw, who would ever wanna be King?"

Viva la Vida.
I used to rule the world
Seas would rise when I gave the word
Now in the morning I sleep alone
Sweep the streets I used to own

I used to roll the dice
Feel the fear in my enemy's eyes
Listened as the crowd would sing
Now the old king is dead long live the king
One minute I held the key
Next the walls were closed on me
And I discovered that my castles stand
Upon pillars of salt and pillars of sand

I hear Jerusalem bells a-ringing
Roman cavalry choirs are singing
Be my mirror, my sword and shield
Missionaries in a foreign field
For some reason I can't explain
Once you'd gone there was never
Never an honest word
And that was when I ruled the world

It was a wicked and wild wind
Blew down the doors to let me in
Shattered windows and the sound of drums
People couldn't believe what I'd become
Revolutionaries wait
For my head on a silver plate
Just a puppet on a lonely string
Oh who would ever want to be king?

I hear Jerusalem bells a-ringing
Roman cavalry choirs are singing
Be my mirror, my sword and shield
My missionaries in a foreign field
For some reason I can't explain
I know St Peter won't call my name
Never an honest word
But that was when I ruled the world

Thursday, May 7

Spring comes and goes...
In that order)


I love birds chirping at 4:13 in the morning

out the window.  I do.
It makes you glad to be alive,
glad it's warmer, and happy
to be up.  Above ground...

Wednesday, May 6


He settled down,” Quenneville said, when asked how much Crawford has improved since his shaky start to the postseason. “He came back in Game 6 against Nashville, the game’s on the line, and he did what he had to do to get the win. He got some confidence off that, and he’s been rock-solid in this series. We’re very happy with how he’s handled things.”

Crawford deflected much of the praise Tuesday to his teammates, who stood with him when the Wild buzzed the loudest. He said they allowed him to see every shot, swept away loads of rebounds and limited the Wild’s close-range chances.

“[Crawford] shut the door,” said Patrick Kane, who scored the game’s only goal. “He’s played huge, especially down the stretch here.”