Quickies: Racism, Housing Scams, and Fossil-Loving Creationists

  • What I Did After Police Killed My Son – “Ten years later, we in Wisconsin passed the nation’s first law calling for outside reviews.” From Jamie & Eric.
  • The most absurd scientific explanations for comic book superpowers – “From brain-swapping to blood transfusions gone wrong, here are the most ridiculous superpower origin stories.”
  • The New Racism – “Sanders and other black Alabamans can now buy a Coke whenever they want or look at anyone without fear of being set upon. But in other, less obvious ways, black people in Alabama and across the South are as politically vulnerable as they’ve been since the emergence of the civil rights movement. ‘It’s a total disempowering of African Americans,’ Sanders said. ‘We are going back to the past very fast.’ “
  • Annotated memoir by Laura Ingalls Wilder will tell the truth about life on the prairie – “The not-safe-for-children tales include stark scenes of domestic abuse, love triangles gone awry and a man who lit himself on fire while drunk off whiskey.” From Michael.
  • How A Dissolvable ‘Tampon’ Could One Day Help Women Stop HIV – Bioengineers have developed way to deliver microbicide to women and it absorbs within 6 minutes, putting it way ahead of many other currently-available methods to prevent HIV. (It is still in clinical trials for now.) From Rebecca.
  • Why Do Creationists Place So Much Importance On A Prehistoric Mollusk? – “Along the Grand Canyon section of the Colorado River sits a canyon that was carved out of redwall limestone by flowing water. There, the rocks contain fossils of the orthocone nautioloid, which lived 500-200 million years ago. But a prominent young-Earth creationist says they’re solid proof of Noah’s flood.” From CriticalDragon1177.
  • Crowded House – “They thought that they’d found the perfect apartment. They weren’t alone.” Seriously, this story is so twisted, save this for your long coffee break.

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Mary Brock works as an Immunology scientist by day and takes care of a pink-loving princess child by night. She likes cloudy days, crafting, cooking, and Fall weather in New England.

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    1. I also found out about the Libertarian angle recently. I try not to let it get in the way of my childhood enjoyment of the books though! :)

  1. My kids picked “Little House on the Prairie” out at library. I figured for some boring, pro-family, kind of soppy stuff like I remember from the TV show.
    The books are not like that.
    The books are a DIY manual for living on the prairie. There’s a lot of intricate detail for: building a wagon box, building a house, making a rocking chair, making a fire place, safely digging a well, making bullets, hunting, trapping, logging, ice cutting, butter churning, farming in general etc. etc.
    The thing I noticed most is that, while Pa is quite competent with the whole “do it yourself” theme, he’d pretty dumb with the “accidentally putting your well built house in Indian Territory” thing.
    Also, there’s a lot more whipping and beating of children than Michael Landon ever led me to believe. So it doesn’t surprise me that there’s an even seedier underbelly to the whole thing.

  2. Just read the New Yorker piece- wow. Tamarro set up a pretty clever scam that even most skeptical people could fall for in the beginning. It definitely makes a case for working with a realtor.

    1. I know! I was amazed that he got to live in that apartment for decades without paying rent. Poor landlords.

  3. Interesting with the microbicidal ‘tampon’.

    On creationists, they generally seem to put a lot of emphasis on any random find that they think disproves natural selection. This is because they have…a fairly limited perspective in the long run. (Most obvious in their “If we disprove Darwin, we’ll be the logical answer.” fallacy.)

  4. So the Little House books are a lot like the Bible…propaganda for an ideology. Of course, I only knew them by the myth.

  5. I love the irony in that link that Weatherwax posted – the whole thing was enabled by a generous government land grant!
    Not to mention that Aunty Mary went to a special school for the blind courtesy of the State of Dakota!
    Libertarians have selective amnesia, methinks.

  6. This reminds me of a story from a town hall meeting I was at about health care reform 5 or so years ago (I probably told this story here at the time but I think it was long enough that no one would remember). A man stood up at the front of the room, talking about how health care is socialism and as his final point he talks about the small business he created after his double lung transplant which he received while on MEDICAID. The congressman looked at him and said, “you know Medicaid is government provided, don’t you?” The man blinked and said first that after the transplant, he pulled himself up by his own bootstraps. He really believed he was self made because the government only gave him the start, he did the rest.

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