This Says SOMETHING About Peer Review
I'm furiously rewriting my last paper in the O.D.U. library. I was informed last week by my professor that the original topic was unacceptable, since it could not be on a developing news story.
Anyway, just now, while studying peer-reviewed journal articles on the Chinese String of Pearls Strategy, ie: the notion that China's heavy involvement in port infrastructure projects is setting up not only commercial ties but a global naval support infrastructure. I checked out a citation on one of the articles I was using and discovered that it was...
Characterizing String-of-Pearls Colloidal Silica by Multidetector Hydrodynamic Chromatography and Comparison to Multidetector Size-Exclusion Chromatography, Off-Line Multiangle Static Light Scattering, and Transmission Electron Microscopy
"Keyword search works best if you read what it turns up."
Now, the reference is a string of words that contains "string of pearls" but is nevertheless irrelevant to my area of study and the article I was referencing...and the passage it was cited as a reference for.
OK. This is Going to Annoy Some People
Apparently having learned A lesson from his magazine's recent defenestration of some high-schoolers and the resulting blowback, Kyle Smith over at NRO decides to go after less formidable prey; a fellow who can't defend himself because he's dead.
You see, there's a new documentary out now that has premiered at Sundance, that regurgitates all the vile allegations against the late Michael Jackson.
Somewhat to my astonishment, Razorfist of all people seems to consider this matter a personal crusade and has been doing the research the press won't do for at least two years. if you are interested in WHY these allegations are complete BS, well the prime paragon of profanity has got you covered here as well as in the embedded video below which he posted yesterday.
Trigger Warning: Rated T for Tourettes
Here's the thing...
While acknowledging that he was extremely talented, I'm actually not a particular fan of Michael Jackson and, frankly, his effete mannerisms give me hives. However, I also think its important that my hangups not be someone else's problem.
Something is truly whacked in our society when I (a bit of a social conservative) have to be the one speaking up for whackadoodle eccentrics and the libertarian blog Instapundit, has as I type this, 131 comments on the matter almost universally supportive of what appears to be a meritless hit piece.
It is crucial to the health of our culture that our society allow eccentric oddballs to exist. That was Michael Jackson's REAL crime. He was a goofy loon who didn't give a tinkers damn about how the scolds and meangrrls thought he should comport himself. I think that he showed poor judgement at times and if there were actual proof of these allegations I'd be on board with digging up his grave and desecrating his corpse. But, there's no proof and a lot of evidence to the contrary. Jackson's good name is being sullied by a bunch of lying lampreys who are, in turn, being facilitated by a culture that has, even more than usual, become the implacable foe of zany bohemians.
It's kind of tough to listen to someone speak with such a fast cadence.
Posted by: Rick C at Tue Jan 29 15:51:23 2019 (Q/JG2)
When the Cosby stories started to come out, one of his accusers from Way Back When was a friend of mine. I believe everything she said about the incident, and that she wasn't seeking attention or money when she came forward, but her story was still decades-old, one-sided, and completely unprovable. And, quite possibly, not a crime.
Posted by: J Greely at Tue Jan 29 16:25:59 2019 (tgyIO)
Damn, 1994 might have been the last year I've read every single book nominated for a Hugo, either that was a damn good year for novels or else I was still in my indiscriminate consumption of SF fandom phase.
Who were the winners that attracted Ellison's ire?
Posted by: Mitch H. at Sat Apr 18 08:24:23 2015 (dc+5f)
Suddenly the sheer volume of vitriol and nastiness I've heard directed at Harlan make a great deal more sense.
Posted by: Doug O. at Sat Apr 18 13:43:29 2015 (S+cJ2)
Doug, back when Harlan was doing commentaries on the Sci-Fi Channel (and I think this clip is one of them), they announced him once with "If you haven't been insulted by something Harlan Ellison has said yet, you haven't been paying attention"...
Posted by: Siergen at Sat Apr 18 19:50:27 2015 (yQ8B4)
Yeah, I was gonna say "this is Harlan Ellison being lovable."
Posted by: Ben at Sat Apr 18 20:00:40 2015 (DRaH+)
5Who were the winners that attracted Ellison's ire?
In the 1994 Hugos, Ellison's "Mefisto in Onyx" was beaten for Best Novella by Harry Turtledove's "Down in the Bottomlands."
The 1994 Nebula awards saw Ellison's "The Man Who Rowed Christopher Columbus Ashore" lose the Short Story category to "Graves" by Joe Haldeman.
Looking at the winners of both awards in 1994, I'm going to guess that his "untalented writer" is Jack Cady, winner of the Nebula Best Novella for "The Night We Buried Road Dog." I only say that because Cady is the only winner that year that I've never heard of... upon looking him up, he was quite accomplished in both the SF and the Horror fields, like Ellison.
Not being an expert on either person, I can't really say. Ellison, being the acerbic sort that he's known to be, makes it just as likely that he believes Kim Stanley Robinson is a no-talent hack, or Turtledove, or Charles Sheffield, or anybody else.
Posted by: Wonderduck at Sat Apr 18 23:46:43 2015 (jGQR+)
I remember SciFi Buzz, Vaguely. It's kinda like remembering when MTV played videos.
Fortunately, almost all of Prisoners of Gravity is available on YouTube. If you want a TV show about SF literature, Commander Rick is as good a guide as you can find.
Posted by: Mauser at Sun Apr 19 02:34:46 2015 (TJ7ih)
There was also FTL Newsfeed and the "newscasts" of Dr. Franklin Ruehl. The fact that those shorts amused me was, in retrospect, an early indication of the deep flaws in my character.
Of course the lede here is that in 1994 people had already started gaming the Hugo's system. As Mitch pointed out, this corresponds to the time that the awards began changing from a recommendation to a warning sign. This phenomenon predated by 20 years the antics of certain despondent juvenile canines . It is not the actions of those residents of fandom's metaphorical pound that distresses their critics, but the exposure of how the game has been played.
Around that time there was reportedly a decision to limit the growth of WorldCon, which conveniently favors the crowd that already goes, and probably enhances their sense of personal ownership of the award.
I wrote up a proposed rules change (It's all the rage lately) and yesterday it got an insane number of hits, since it was on Michael Z. Williamson's facebook page.
Posted by: Mauser at Sun Apr 19 07:13:06 2015 (TJ7ih)
Jack Cady is apparently a guy who got a fair amount of awards on the literary side of sf and horror, but he doesn't seem to have published much outside of literary stuff. I agree that I've never heard of him, but apparently a lot of literary mainstream folks have.
OTOH, if you're talking about who was likely to have been on the Internet in 1994 and "asking for votes," I'd have to say Kim Stanley Robinson.
But yeah, I don't remember this kerfuffle at all. It would probably be worth it to search rec.arts.sf.written, except that Google's search engine for newsgroups really stinks.
Posted by: Suburbanbanshee at Sun Apr 19 09:43:42 2015 (ZJVQ5)
In the 1980's I dated a woman who was a big-time science fiction fan. She went to a lot of conventions and always went to WorldCon, and I was always a bit amazed at just how seriously she took the Hugo ballot. They really do think they're doing something really important when they vote.
And yet, they'll say, "We're not hard core; THOSE GUYS are hard core." There's a denigrating term, "SMOF" which stands for "Secret Masters of Fandom" used to refer to the especially extreme fans. (Someone started a tongue-in-cheek convention called SMOFCON; I have no idea if it is still running.)
11Jack Cady is apparently a guy... ...I agree that I've never heard of him, but apparently a lot of literary mainstream folks have.
Banshee, that is literally the only reason I assumed he was the target
of Ellison's ire. My assumption was that if I'd heard of them, it seems
unlikely that they'd be considered "no-talent hacks."
It was only after googling him that I discovered that he'd also be a
natural rival of Ellison, seeing how they both wrote the same sort of
thing. As I can't imagine Ol Unka Harlan passing up a chance to take a
shot at someone he'd be competing with, it made him even more likely in
However, the number of ways that this logic chain can be incorrect is
staggeringly huge since it rests upon two thin reeds: my knowledge of
someone being a worthwhile predictor of something, and Ellison's thought
Posted by: Wonderduck at Sun Apr 19 22:05:42 2015 (jGQR+)
Turtledove is the sort of writer who is persona non grata among the awards people, but I've never noticed him online, and definitely not back in 1994. Robinson is exactly the sort of writer who'd I'd expect to game the system - entitled and prone to morally muddled philosophizing. But if he was online in 1994 it was in different circles than where I went... he was a "movement" guy, though. Big noise among the regnant humanist movement of the time, that defeated the cyberpunks in the marathon simian poo-flinging tournaments of fandom in the long Eighties.
Posted by: Mitch H. at Mon Apr 20 09:33:34 2015 (dc+5f)
Thoughts on Privilege and Structural Bigotry
A friend of mine who I respect a tremendous amount pointed me to this SJW screed....approvingly.
The article is actually thoughtful and well written, and I don't mean "by the standards of SJW screeds" either. I'll elaborate on my disagreements with it in a moment, but I urge you to read the whole thing.
The article ( by a Laurie Penny) is actually a response to a blog comment by MIT Professor Scott Aaronson . The comment (which the author doesn't directly link to) is here. It is also thoughtful and I encourage you to take time to read it.
If you've read both article and post, you've already lost 12 minutes of your life so you won't miss what you'll lose by reading on.
Over at Chizumatic is a long, thoughtful and rather brave disquisition on the pressing topic of otaku dream girls. Stephen points out the biggest of many hurdles there are to Otaku dating.....(incidentally, this very nebbish factor is one reason I tend not to like harem shows).
Meanwhile, in the UK a scientist has pointed out what might happen if we forlorn Otaku are allowed to breed, instead of being the evolutionary dead ends that so many of our predecessors were.
Truly frightening prospects, but I'm doing my bit to keep this dystopia at bay..
Of course I have known men who are evil and passive-aggressive and who have tremendously hurt some of my female friends who's only crime is to have trusted them. I've known women who's husbands lied to them about every single thing...from their ambition to their occupation. I've known other men whose every action was calculated to manipulate, control and isolate the women in their lives and when the girls in question washed their hands of the parasitic jerks found themselves bearing a terrible cost financially and professionally. I know of 4 cases in particular that could almost be out of a Stephen King novel or Satoshi Kohn movie....but they are so off the wall the women might be identifiable if I elaborated.
Evil knows no gender.
So why am I a bitter angry misogynist?
A college professor told me so.....
(Hence it must be true.
Thus, I must occasionally do misogenyblogging.
ergo.... When a guy does something like I mentioned above, the universal response is to "Kill it with fire!!"
Winkler said the community has reached out to her, giving her everything from a five -bedroom home to live in for $150 to a car she's traded in for a sports utility vehicle.
Of course after there was a stink raised the murdering wench got custody of her kids... that was blocked, at least temporarily but the difference in standards is frankly scary...she HAD custody by default until a huge stink was raised.
The difference in cost of relationships is now at least as bad as it was in the pre suffrage days, but in the opposite direction. A guy who gets married is utterly at the mercy of the good faith of the woman in question to avoid financial ruin, the loss of his kids and have a domestic court-order put on him (which will put him on a list and ensure he can never own a gun).
The heartbreak endured by many (no means all) 1st wives is well documented, but "Starter Husbands" are seen as progress.
I could go on and be terribly bitter and hateful but I'm satisfied that my recognition of the problem fuffills my duties as a bonified Misogynist.
None of this decreases the hurt or injustice suffered by women who are the victims of abuse, stalking or ungodly creepieness (or, in many parts of the world terrible oppression from clitorectamies to murder). Horrors they endure simply because of their sex ....but these developments I'm talking about are not excused by those injustices either.
Anyway, as I'm officially a misogynist, rather than denying it I hereby embrace my cultural identity.
As such, my first official act shall be to call all those evil, manipulative, parasitic guys I mentioned....effeminate.
My next misogynistic act will be to watch Chobits.
I don't care what gender someone is, sometimes things are just evil plain and simple. The fact that human beings can treat each other so horribly is depressing regardless of the sex of the agressor.
Disliking evil doesn't make you a mysaganist it makes you a compassionate human being.
Bigots need to get a clue. No one gets a pass to be an asshole just because of their gender, race, sexual orientation, physical challenges ect. Just because someone goes through crap doesn't mean they get a free pass to kill, maime or treat other people like dirt.
Posted by: Marina at Wed Oct 10 17:17:32 2007 (z3dTy)