Interesting Links, November 2010

Here are links I found interesting in November 2010:

  • Voting, misunderstood – “If you don’t vote because you’re trying to teach politicians a lesson, you’re tragically misguided in your strategy. The very politicians you’re trying to send a message to don’t want you to vote. Since 1960, voting turnouts in mid-term elections are down significantly, and there’s one reason: because of TV advertising.” Read more on Seth’s Blog. And for Pete’s sake, GET OUT AND VOTE!
  • Why We Published the Christine O’Donnell Story – I need to follow up the previous link with this: “Christine O’Donnell is seeking federal office based in part on her self-generated, and carefully tended, image as a sexually chaste woman. She lies about who she is; she tells that lie in service of an attempt to impose her private sexual values on her fellow citizens; and she’s running for Senate. We thought information documenting that lie—that O’Donnell does not live a chaste life as she defines the word, and in fact hops into bed, naked and drunk, with men that she’s just met—was of interest to our readers.” Read more on Gawker. Personally, I agree. The story isn’t as much of a slander of O’Donnell as it is evidence of her personal misrepresentation. I’m glad they published it.
  • I Had a One-Night Stand With Christine O’Donnell – “Three years ago this week, an intoxicated Christine O’Donnell showed up at the apartment of a 25-year-old Philadelphian and ended up spending the night in his bed. Here’s his story—and photos—of his escapade with the would-be Delaware senator.” Read more on Gawker. Good thing she’s supported by all the bible-thumper tea partiers. Sheesh.
  • All Patriots ‘Know’ that Moses Wrote the Constitution – Here’s what some people are being taught about the Constitution in church basements: “…we have to learn the basic truth about the Constitution: God wrote it. It comes directly from the government instituted by Moses when he led the Children of Israel out of Egypt. That system was re-instituted in England around 450 A.D. by the Anglo-Saxon rulers Hengist and Horsa. The Founding Fathers, led by Thomas Jefferson, copied the Constitution directly from the “ancient constitution” of the Anglo-Saxons.” Are you worried? I am. Read more on the Atlantic Web site.
  • Alcohol Is More Lethal Than Heroin, Study Finds – “Alcohol is more dangerous than illegal drugs like heroin and crack cocaine, according to a new study.” Read more on NPR.
  • Dear Fox Advertiser- What’s Possible – In July, the Tides Foundation, after numerous verbal attacks by Glenn Beck, almost fell victim to an attack by one of Beck’s disciples. It was only after a shootout that the police managed to arrest the man. The Tides Foundation is asking advertisers to stop advertising on Fox. They recognize the hate Beck is generating and the blood that will be on advertiser’s hands if they continue to fund Beck’s bullshit. Can anyone read this and defend Beck’s behavior?
  • MacVoices #10124: Maria Langer On The Changes in Microsoft Word 2011 and How To Learn Them – I was interviewed for the MacVoices podcast. I talked about my new Lynda.com course about Word 2011.
  • What’s really hurting Christianity in America – An interesting take on the loss of religiosity in the United States. Apparently, the folks pushing religion are also setting us up to “need” it through political manipulation and reduction in government services. In the Los Angeles Times.
  • Morgan Freeman Says GOP Candidate B.J. Lawson Is Lying: I Never Recorded An Ad For Him – This is the kind of crap that makes American politics so ugly. There’s definite evidence that the GOP candidate KNEW a voice double was being used yet publicly stated it was Morgan Freeman. LYING to the American public is business as usual. Apparently the purpose of government is to jockey into position for special interests and personal wealth-building, not serving the public. Anything goes as long as the candidate reaches his goal. Behavior like this makes me ashamed to be an American.
  • 22 Things We Don’t Give a Rat’s Ass About – Funny, especially if you spend as much time on the Internet as I do.
  • Top 10 Misconceptions about Photography and the Law: A Conversation with Attorney Carolyn E. Wright – Excellent article for photographers and creative professionals.
  • MacJury #1026: Holiday Gift Guide Part 2 – Gift-giving ideas for the Mac (or other computer) user in your life.
  • An Open Letter to Wired Magazine – Seriously: Why are there boobs on the cover of this month’s Wired magazine?
  • You Write ‘Bias Journalism’ and I Read ‘Derp’ – Thank you for writing this, Joel Johnson. I share your anger and frustration every time one of my blog posts gets hijacked by moronic commenters who just don’t get it. On Gizmodo. Thanks to @MikeTRose for sharing this link.
  • The Man in the Frey Flannel Suit – Is anyone really THIS desperate to be published? On John Scalzi’s Whatever blog.
  • George Bush Book ‘Decision Points’ Lifted From Advisers’ Books – Great. Now ex-presidents are trying to pass off other people’s work as their own. Can you say “plagiarist”?
  • TSA – Sexual Assault – More reports of TSA abuses. Now moms are being sexually assaulted in public at airports.
  • TSA encounter at SAN – All I can say to this story is HOLY SHIT. They have given themselves the right to view images of our naked bodies and/or feel us up — just to get on a plane. When will this stop? Spread this story and others of TSA abuses. WE ARE AMERICANS yet we are losing our rights!
  • God will save us from climate change: U.S. Representative – “U.S. Representative John Shimkus, possible future chairman of the Congressional committee that deals with energy and its attendant environmental concerns, believes that climate change should not concern us since God has already promised not to destroy the Earth.” Read more on TheStar.com. (No, not that Star.) Welcome to the Tea Party, folks.
  • At FTC’s Request, Judge Imposes Ban on Marketers of “Detox” Foot Pads – “As part of its efforts to crack down on bogus health claims, the FTC last year charged the promoters of the foot pads with running deceptive ads on television and the Internet that touted the “ancient Japanese secret to perfect health” for treating wide-ranging medical conditions.” Read more on FTC.gov. It’s about time the U.S. government starts cracking down on quack medicine.
  • The Tina Fey Jokes About Sarah Palin That PBS Censored – “When Tina Fey won the Mark Twain Prize for American Humor, she credited Sarah Palin for her success, saying “I would be a liar and an idiot if I didn’t thank Sarah Palin for helping get me here tonight.” For folks watching the ceremony on PBS, the discussion of Palin ended on that magnanimous note. Only the audience got to hear Fey subsequently rip into the mama grizzly for her stance on evolution, gay marriage, and rape kits.” Watch the video on The Atlantic.
  • TSA Opt-Out Day, Now with a Superfantastic New Twist! – Gentlemen: Wear a kilt to the airport for your next flight, go commando, and then opt out of the “privacy-invading, genital-picture-taking, radiation-delivering back-scatter imaging machine” examination. You’ll be doing your fellow Americans a great service.
  • Where We Write: The Merits of Making Do – A great essay about why its more important to find a place to get work done than to make a place to get work done.
  • What Do You Believe In? – Another great essay by Michael Shermer.
  • Steal this book: The loan arranger – An article about the lending of ebooks and the simple reality that ebooks are not OWNED by their buyers if their buyers can’t do what they want with them.
  • The South shall rise again – “…Republican Loy Mauch, elected to represent House District 26 near Hot Springs. A former head of the Sons of the Confederate Veterans post in Hot Springs, Mauch calls the Confederate flag “a symbol of Jesus Christ,” and is a current member of The League of the South, a group which works toward the formation of an independent Southern nation.” Read more in ArkTimes.com. Way to go, Arkansas — step back in to the 19th century with Jesus.
  • GOP frosh: Where’s my health care? – “A conservative Maryland physician elected to Congress on an anti-Obamacare platform surprised fellow freshmen at a Monday orientation session by demanding to know why his government-subsidized health care plan takes a month to kick in.” Read more on Politico.com.
  • Video of TSA Screener Accosting 3 Year Old Child at Security Checkpoint – Why is the TSA searching kids like this?
  • Republican Freshman Wants His Government Run Health Care Right Now – “You really can’t make this stuff up — newly-elected congressman Andy Harris (R-MD) wants to know why his government-subsidized health care won’t kick in in time for he and his fellow tea party Republicans to begin their jihad against other people’s health insurance.” Read more on The Daily Kos. It’s good enough for them, but not good in any way for the rest of us.
  • Dear Apple, I have a small bone to pick. Please… – “The Beatles appearing on iTunes doesn’t matter to us. It matters to you. If we so desperately wanted to own any of their albums, there are a multitude of ways we could have bought them and quite simply ripped them onto iTunes ourselves. Aside from the Apple Inc./Apples Corps Ltd. shareholders, the announcement is only of real interest to complete shut-ins incapable of getting to the shops and who somehow have access to the iTunes store but not Amazon.” Read more on Swiss Cheese and Bullets. Thanks for saying this so I don’t have to do it. No sense in ALL of us wasting our time ridiculing Apple today. So many more constructive things to do.
  • Why The Controversy? Vaccines Save Lives – “I happen to think vaccines are the single greatest invention of humankind. In the middle of the 20th century, the world saw 50 million cases of smallpox every year. Thirty years later, thanks to a successful vaccination campaign, that number fell to — and has remained at — zero.” Read more on NPR.org.
  • Gladys Ingle of the 13 BLACK CATS changes planes in mid-air – Very cool video clip of a wingwalker repairing a plane’s landing gear in flight.
  • Ex-Homeland Security chief head said to abuse public trust by touting body scanners – washingtonpost.com – “Since the attempted bombing of a U.S. airliner on Christmas Day, former Homeland Security secretary Michael Chertoff has given dozens of media interviews touting the need for the federal government to buy more full-body scanners for airports.” Exactly what is Chertoff’s involvement with the company that makes these scanners? Learn more in the Washington Post.
  • TSA, the Nude-O-Scan, and Security – “It’s great that loads of people are jumping on board the protest against the new TSA security regime that’s rolling out across the United States. They should. A choice between getting electronically strip searched or sexually molested is no choice at all. It’s giving up too many rights in the name of security. And that, my friends, is tyranny.” I couldn’t agree more. Read the rest of this post on Duncan Davidson’s blog.
  • Dumb Things Americans Believe – America, the Ignorant. This is embarrassing stuff. In Newsweek.
  • Want To Cut Defense? Maybe Give The Military a Breather, Then – Save money on military defense by fighting fewer wars? Hell, it works for me.
  • Sanford Airport to opt out of TSA screening – “Orlando Sanford International Airport has decided to opt out from TSA screening.” Read more on WDBO.com. I wonder where this will go.
  • California prosecutors say they’ll charge TSA agents if pat-downs are inappropriate – “As nearly 2 million holiday travellers pack Bay Area airports starting Friday, local prosecutors have a warning for overzealous security agents performing the new federal pat-down: touch passengers the wrong way, and we’ll throw you in jail.” Read more in the VancouverSun.com.
  • Cooks Source Magazine Forced To Close, Following Facebook Backlash – “A magazine that makes its living from reprinting stolen material does not deserve to be in business.” I couldn’t agree more. Read the rest of this saga on AllFacebook.com.
  • The Golden Hour Calculator / Sunrise and Sunset information for photographers – What a great online tool for photographers and pilots! Enter your location on earth and the calculator will show sunrise and sunset information for the day. Lots of details. Very cool.
  • Understanding Camera Lenses – Great page with reference information, interactive examples, and calculators for camera lenses.
  • National Geographic’s Photography Contest 2010 – The National Geographic Photography Contest entries. Think you’re a good photographer? Think again while you look at these.
  • NOAA Solar Calculator – Here’s a Web page that calculates and displays the angle of the sun for anyplace on earth at any day or time. Free from NOAA. Of huge interest to photographers.
  • TSA Gone Wild! – Amusing, factual info graphic about the TSA’s increased screening demands.
  • Adam Savage says “WTF, TSA?” – This proves something I was telling a friend this morning: TSA screening is ineffective.
  • Cell Phone Images – What phone do you use? How do you see yourself? How do others see you? It’s all here.
  • Palin: ‘Obviously, We’ve Got To Stand With Our North Korean Allies’ – Sarah Palin proves once again that she is clueless.
  • I was just detained by the TSA – This guy was detained by the TSA just for taking photos, which is perfectly legal.
  • Al Gore Mea Culpa: Support for Corn-Based Ethanol Was a Mistake – Ya think?
  • Hitchens defeats Blair in Canadian religion debate – Yes, the atheist beat the Catholic.
  • Shooting video at a TSA checkpoint? Here’s what you should know – Good article covering your rights and providing phone numbers for more info.
  • TSA Terrorize A Disabled 4 Year Old Boy By Removing His Leg Braces, Then Forcing Him To Walk – The stupidity is breathtaking.
  • Make Your Own Luck | Psychology Today – Five principles for making the most of life’s twists and turns.
  • The Attention-Span Myth – Interesting piece about “attention spans.” (Apparently, there is hope for me.) In the NY Times.
  • Eight Things I’m Sick Of In Social Media – I’m sick of most of this stuff, too. How much of it are you guilty of? On Forrester.com.

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