August 16th, 2017
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posted by [personal profile] siderea at 09:23pm on 16/08/2017 under
I have made a heap of all my spoons and then set the heap on fire.

Which is to say, I am at a conference. So far it's been a really good conference.

Imma gonna fall over into my bed momentarily.
August 15th, 2017
posted by [personal profile] herooftheage at 12:01pm on 15/08/2017
Our traditional 21st Century Party is this Saturday, starting at 14:00 and going until the last person leaves. It'll have all the usual things - gamies, video, food not cooked over a campfire in the rain, electric lights, the works. You are all invited to attend. The address is 12 Melville Avenue in Dorchester. I'm sure google will do at least as good a job as I would getting you here.
Mood:: 'cheerful' cheerful
posted by [personal profile] herooftheage at 11:59am on 15/08/2017
Another one in the books. This time I was the East's Earl Marshal, which means I was Marshal-3 for Pennsic. It was an interesting experience.

I got to know both Savaric and Tessa, who did good jobs. Savaric was dealt a poor hand - this was the first time he did active marshaling and management at Pennsic, and there are too many details to come into that cold. Having said that, he overcame everything and did a creditable job in difficult circumstances. He did not drown in his baptism of fire. Tessa and I will do better in the coming years for the experience this week, and that was largely due to Savaric.

I spent a lot of time inspecting armor and weapons. The largest weapon fail was for missing lanyards/trigger loops. The largest helmet fail was for helmets that were too small, letting me put a thrusting tip on a person's bare jaw. I hope we have something explicit about that in the next Pennsic handbook, as people seemed to think this was an acceptable situation.

I'm probably a bit too quiet while marshalling. I need to fix that. Didn't used to be true. It was probably a result of my trying to take in The Big Picture, but one shouldn't neglect the here and now to do so.

Marshal's court wasn't too difficult. Generally, one gets two kinds of cases: someone screwed up and you have to figure out how to fix it, and the intentional jerks. Fortunately, all the cases we got were from the former group, and so things were relatively simple.


I acquired a complete set of fencing gear, including a sweet 45" rapier. Now I just have to figure out what to do with the thing. I'm still studying my Agrippa, but James Klock recommended Joachim Meyer for drills I can do on my own.

I also commissioned a specialty belt for my nakers, which will make playing them much easier.


Camp was its usual fun. There was a new group on the block, and they fit in quite well.


Marshalling kept me from seeing all the people I wanted to see. I gather Patri and Britt were there for a week and a half, and I never ran into them. My bad, but I was pretty wiped out at the end of every day, and mostly went to bed early.


I played golf twice, won once, stunk up the place the second time. I fought one day. It turns out if you're from someplace that's never seen the sort of things I do, it's very hard to adequately defend what's coming. I fought one duke from someplace west of the Mississippi, and after I threw him 10' with Move #1, he got up and said "Where I come from, its customary for polearm fighters to retreat when I charge them". Welcome to the East! (Yes, I know we were in Aethelmaerc). To his credit, he figured it out pretty quickly.

One of the days I wasn't fighting, after inspecting all day, I watched some fighting. I came across to this one young guy with a poleax that went up to his nose. He took a charge from a shieldman, parried the wrap, followed the weapon back and hit the guy in the head with the hammer end. When I asked him where he learned that, he said it just seemed to be the best way.

I gave him the half hour class on fighting that way. I hope it helped. :)

We're home now. I've cleaned and packed away the tent. I'm back to doing the things I do when I'm not at Pennsic.
Mood:: 'content' content
metahacker: A stylized S, part of the logo for the RPG Shadowrun (shadowrun)
siderea: (Default)
Local clinicians: I just got the mailing for this fall's Harvard Med Psychiatry Dept CE trainings, and at the Dec 1 & 2 session "Treating Couples", kinda buried in the list of presenters are Esther Perel and Terry Real. It's astronomically expensive, like all Harvard Med's stuff, but if you're a sufficiently hardcore fan, there you go. (Some of the other names on this list may also be famous people I don't recognize.)
August 13th, 2017
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posted by [personal profile] siderea at 11:33pm on 13/08/2017 under ,
Via [personal profile] conuly, Why Medicaid Matters to You, by Prof. Sharona Hoffman, of CWRU. tl;dr: Because Medicaid is not just for poor people, it's how old people (and younger disabled people) pay for nursing homes. So it's for you, too, unless you plan on dying young and healthy.

The article has some interesting stats in it.

(I'm morbidly curious to know where you can score a private nursing home room for only $92k/yr. I presume it's somewhere very rural and far away from here, with terrible care, because by Massachuetts prices that's an incredible bargain.)
siderea: (Default)
posted by [personal profile] siderea at 12:00am on 13/08/2017 under
1) I feel the need to share that the lamp in question, I got from Aunt C – who spent her entire working adult life making lightbulbs for Sylvania. The fact that I can't manage to find adequate working replacement LED bulbs his is either the most ironic or most appropriate thing ever.

2) Okay, I'm now in correspondence with the manufacturer of one of the sets of 5W bulbs that didn't work. They asked about the competitor bulbs that worked, and said they will scare some up to compare with their product. ETA 8/13/17 11:10PM: I have just got a full refund and a thank you note for supplying such detailed information, which is being passed on to the R&D team.
August 12th, 2017
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posted by [personal profile] siderea at 03:03pm on 12/08/2017 under ,
I am frustrated with how my writing has been going of late. It's been difficult. I find myself having trouble keeping my focus on what I'm writing.

As you may have noticed, I tend to write about whatever I'm thinking about. Normally, that's (1) my psychotherapy clients and the issues that come up when working with them, (2) minds, more generally, and (3) the larger world around me, i.e. current events, politics, sociology, anthropology, economics, etc.

In an important sense, what I write about is my reaction to what I encounter in my life.

Right now my life is very rich in contact with the healthcare industry. There's D's health issues, my health issues (nothing new and alarming), my clients' health issues, and current events having to do with health insurance and medicine. So I have about a million and one things to say about healthcare.

Except that even I am getting bored of healthcare.

And, perhaps more importantly, I really have other topics that it feels to me would be much better use of my time. In this day in history, I don't think tackling problems in the US healthcare system is at all the best use of myself – as important as these things are, it feels a bit like rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic.

This is not a general sense of futility. I have a huge amount of things in my head that I think sharing could be a very useful contribution to the Very Long Game. I understand what is going on in the US right now very, very, very differently than almost every other commentor. This is what I ardently want to be writing about.

If I could – ugh! – just get my head clear of all this incredibly boring healthcare stuff.

So what's been happening on the back end here, in Siderealand, is that I am oscillating rapidly and not at all profitably between the previously alluded to monster healthcare post (or series) and tackling some of the Very Long Game topics – interrupted by the occasional hot take on current events (you have no idea how badly I want to respond to the Sexist Googler Memo, while at the same time very badly wanting not to have to finish reading the Sexist Google Memo, much less start again from the beginning this time taking notes) – and never actually getting any one thing finished. I'll try to work on the monster healthcare post and my mind will wander off in boredom; so I'll try to work on something more important, but then I'll have to treat a patient or get my own medical care or deal with D's health issues, and my attention is wrenched back to healthcare and healthcare-related observations flood my mind. Argh.

I've been feeling unwell, physically, in ways that are also making concentration hard. This makes the VLG stuff particularly daunting, because it involves having to explain a lot of background and conceptual stuff to get where I am trying to go. I mean, that's the whole point of the exercise. And that takes - or so I find – a lot of concentration to do at all, much less well.

So, for instance, today was supposed to be a writing day, but I woke up, for no reason I can tell, exhausted and having trouble marshalling words. *throws hands up in the air* Before writing this, I took a break to play some flash games and, wow, does my judgment and reaction time suck.

So I guess we'll see what I come up with. Sigh.

ETA: Ahahah, and I managed to initially post this technically wrongly, trying a second time, see if I manage to get it to my journal.

ETA2: I feel I should mention, part of why my contact with healthcare is up is that my clinical caseload is up: I have more patients. Which is wonderful and makes me happy.
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posted by [personal profile] siderea at 12:47am on 12/08/2017 under
Of particular note to my fellow geek clinicians: just published in the US was Superhero Therapy: Mindfulness Skills to Help Teens and Young Adults Deal with Anxiety, Depression, and Trauma, by psychologist Janina Scarlet, PhD.

It draws unapologetically on her own personal experience of identifying with the X-Men to heal from the trauma of radiation poisoning, subsequent chronic illness, being a refugee, and being bullied.

I haven't read it yet, just excerpts, but it looks lovely. Illustrated by Wellinton Alves of Marvel and DC.
August 11th, 2017
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posted by [personal profile] siderea at 12:51am on 11/08/2017 under
So, I previously asked about LED lightbulbs for my lamp that takes S11 shape, E17 (aka "intermediate") base, 40W bulbs.

I went forth and ordered bulbs. I got a pair that were 4W and 4500K that only put out 300 or so lumens and were very blue-white. They worked, but it was like being in an aquarium, and not good for reading, so I decided I need to find bulbs that were brighter but with a warmer color.
So I ordered a pack of 5W, 470 Lumen, 2700K bulbs.

They didn't work. I put them in the socket, flicked the switch back and forth, and nothing happened.

I figured I was shipped some dud bulbs, so I reported them defective, and got my money back.

But I still didn't have bulbs I liked, so I tried again from another vendor, ordering 5W ("40W replacement"), 3000K bulbs from a different manufacturer.

They didn't work either.

So at this point, I don't think it's that the bulbs are defective, since now I have four of them that don't work, from two different manufacturers.



I have four sets of bulbs:

0) The last two incandenscants that worked, but which are now both burnt out. I have kept them as references.

1) The first pair of LEDs bulbs, the unsatisfactory weak 4W blue-white ones. They still work fine. They're what I'm using now.

2) The second pair of LED bulbs, which are 5W/2500K, and don't work.

3) The third pair of LED bulbs, which are 5W/3000K, and don't work.

I have discovered that the incandescents have something in common with the (working) first pair of LEDs that the (non-working) second and third pair of LEDs don't: the contact on the bottom of the bulb on the non-working LEDs is a smidge – like half a milimeter – longer.

I repeat: the non-working bulbs are a teeny bit longer in the contact that goes in the socket. The little bump on the end.

I have no idea what to do with this information. Like, why are these bulbs slightly the wrong size to fit in my lamp? But still called E17? And why is it that it's the 5W bulbs that are like this? Are all 5W LED bulbs like this? Is there a way to shop for bulbs that will fit my lamp? Is there a way to fix my lamp or the bulb so these will work?
August 10th, 2017
siderea: (Default)
posted by [personal profile] siderea at 11:58pm on 10/08/2017 under ,
(h/t Metafilter)

Ah, the trials and tribulations of garage bands. The bickering. The struggling for bookings. The desperation to get noticed by industry decisionmakers. The unexplained discharge of huge electromagnetic/nuclear forces.

A short "sci-fi rock-and-roll adventure" film about a small band with a big problem: an inexplicable tendency to burn down the house. Literally. [13 minutes, Vimeo]
tim: text: "I'm not offended, I'm defiant" (defiant)
posted by [personal profile] tim at 12:22pm on 10/08/2017 under ,
This is a follow-up to my article "Refusing to Empathize with Elliot Rodger: Taking Male Entitlement Seriously".

As I mentioned initially, Lundy Bancroft lists a number of tactics abusive men use in conversations. In Why Does He Do That?, he notes that when one of the abusers he works with attempts to use one of these tactics on him or another group participant, and Bancroft calmly names which tactic it is instead of reacting, the abuser usually gets even angrier. So in that spirit, I thought I would compile a list of responses to my article and classify them according to the abuse tactics they use.

Here is a subset of Bancroft's list of conversational abuse tactics in p. 145-146 (n.b. all page-number references are to Why Does He Do That?)

  1. Sarcasm
  2. Ridicule
  3. Distorting what you say (this was one of the most common responses I saw, in which the interlocutor would make up a caricature of what I wrote and then attack that, instead of engaging with the actual ideas).
  4. Accusing you of doing what he does, or thinking the way he thinks (AKA projection, as discussed on p. 142)
  5. Using a tone of absolute certainty and final authority -- "defining reality":
    When Mr. Right decides to take control of a conversation, he switches into his Voice of Truth, giving the definitive pronouncement on what is the correct answer or the proper outlook. Abuse counselors call this tactic defining reality. Over time, his tone of authority can cause his partner to doubt her own judgment and come to see herself as not very bright. (p. 82)
  6. Not listening, refusing to respond -- I've rephrased this as "dismissal", since the original list was concerned with in-person conversations where one person can literally ignore the other. Online, the equivalent of this is not ignoring, but replying in a way that doesn't at all engage with the content, rather labeling it in ways that create negative sentiment without actually trying to refute ideas. Dismissal is not ignoring (it's great when people ignore things they don't like or don't care about!) -- the effort that the abuser puts in to communicate "I didn't read this, I didn't think it was worth reading, but I'm still going to attack it" shows that it is important to them that the person being abused not be heard. (Compare Kathy Sierra's "Trouble at the Kool-Aid Point" and my own previous discussion of false dismissal.)
  7. Changing the subject to his grievances
  8. Provoking guilt
  9. Playing the victim
  10. Name-calling, insults, put-downs. I'm calling out "insulting intelligence" as its own subcategory:
    The abuser tends to see his partner as less intelligent, less competent, less logical, and even less sensitive than he is.... He often has difficulty conceiving of her as a human being. (p. 63)
    One of the primary rhetorical weapons used against underrepresented people in tech is that we're not intelligent, and indeed, that was a large part of what made the original manifesto abusive.
  11. Threatening to harm you
There are others, but I listed the ones that are most relevant to online conversations. And I would add two more:
  • Demanding explanation, where the interlocutor asks for more justification either in ways that make it clear they didn't read the entire piece, or didn't read it carefully, or don't actually want to debate and are just asking in order to steal attention. Sort of like a human denial-of-service attack. The person demanding explanation is like the type of abuser Bancroft describes as "Mr. Right":
    "Mr. Right tries to sanitize his bullying by telling me, 'I have strong opinions' or 'I like debating ideas.' This is like a bank robber saying, 'I'm interested in financial issues.' Mr. Right isn't interested in debating ideas; he wants to impose his own." (p. 83)
    "It is frustrating, and ultimately pointless, to argue with someone who is certain beyond the shadow of a doubt that his perspective is accurate and complete and that yours is wrong and stupid. Where can the conversation possibly go?" (p. 144)
    Demanding explanation is abusive because it's deceptive: the abuser who demands an explanation holds out the promise that he is reasonable, he can be persuaded, and the conversation can go somewhere positive if you just explain more. In reality, he is not open to being changed by what he hears, and is just trying to waste your time and/or entrap you for more abuse. Demanding a 1-on-1 conversation also reflects entitlement to the time and attention of the writer, who has already provided plenty of explanation. It is pretty obvious to me when someone is asking questions out of genuine openness to change, and when they're doing it in a rude and entitled way.
  • Gaslighting; Bancroft discusses discrediting extensively (p. 125, p. 146) but doesn't call it out in the above list. "You're too sensitive", "You're overreacting", and -- when not justified, other than by the purported oversensitivity of the writer -- "You can't make that comparison, it's ridiculous" are all forms of gaslighting. They attempt to make the listener doubt their own perceptions and judgment. I included gaslighting comments under "ridicule", but it's worth pointing out that this is a common and insidious form of ridicule, since it seems superficially reasonable (of course we all think that nobody should be too sensitive, or react too much, though the boundary for how sensitive it's acceptable to be is rarely discussed).

The analysis

I read:
  • All of my mentions that were replies to tweets (from me or other people) linking to "Refusing to Empathize with Elliot Rodger, or that linked to the essay without replying to me.
  • Two comments on my Dreamwidth post that were screened and that I deleted.
(I excluded a lot of mentions that could also have gone on this list, but were replies to tweets unrelated to the essay. My favorite one of those, though, was a response to a picture I posted of a display of boxes of LaCroix sparkling water, which said something like "looking for something to drink so you can get fatter?")

The following table lists all but one of the responses, along with the abusive tactics each one employs.

There was one response that didn't use any of the abusive tactics above. It was illogical (blaming Marc Lépine's actions on Islam because Lépine's father was Algerian), but may have been written in good faith, even if it was ignorant.

So in short:

  • 27 critical/negative replies
  • 26 out of 27 use at least one abuse tactic identified by Bancroft; most several
  • The remaining one is illogical / primarily based on religious stereotyping.
  • No substantive criticisms. At all.
I am often wrong, and many times, people have had critical things to say about my writing. Sometimes they were right. Often, they were non-abusive. But something about this essay drew out many abusive responses, while no one had a genuine intellectual criticism. When you call out and name abuse, a way that you can tell that you were right is that the abusers get more abusive. I'm sure there are places where this essay falls short, logically, or could be better expressed. But no one has pointed them out.

CW: verbally abusive comments; slurs )


The dominance of abuse in the negative responses to my piece doesn't prove I'm right, of course. It doesn't prove there's no good argument against my core theses, and it doesn't prove I didn't make any mistakes. But given that a lot of people were so eager to debunk my article, if there was a good argument, don't you think one of them might have found one?

I think giving names to abusive conversational patterns is extremely powerful and I think it's important to distinguish between criticism and abuse, and notice when the only thing people can seem to muster up in response to anti-abuse discourse is more abuse.

August 8th, 2017
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posted by [personal profile] siderea at 02:08am on 08/08/2017 under ,
When I was a child (1970s and 1980s), bread was different. Some types of bread – particularly rye and pumpernickel – were dense and crumbly, not light and squishy. This was why, as I understand it and found it so myself, they were preferable for meat sandwiches (e.g. ham on rye) or sandwiches with runny fillings like tomatos.

But today – literally today, I was just at the grocery – bread sold as pumpernickel and rye are as fluffly and yielding as white bread. They have no solidity, no heft. And they work terribly, IMHO, under load.

It's not just the breads in the bread aisle like this either; the fancy gourmet stuff in the bakery area is the same. You can sometimes get crusty loaves of one thing or another, but under the crusts it's all squishy. It's been a while since I've seen "peasant style" cakey loaves of whole grain flours.

And while the problem is worst for rye and pumpernickel, I have gotten the impression that mass commercial sliced wheat breads have also changed in texture, having gone from grainy and crumbly in my youth, to glossy and fluffy today.

I'm not imagining this, am I? What the hell happened to bread?

Is it still possible to get a traditional, dense pumpernickel in the Boston area? I mean, by the loaf; all the restaurants I have gotten sandwiches at still have a source for real, sandwich-weight pumpernickel, so clearly there's a wholesale source. Is there a retail one?
August 7th, 2017
tim: "System Status: Degraded" (degraded)
[Content warnings: Discussion of domestic violence, suicide, and verbal abuse, including specific misogynist slurs and more general sexist gaslighting strategies.]

In 1989, Marc Lépine murdered fourteen women in Montreal for being women and being engineering students. He proceeded to kill himself, having written in his suicide note:

"Would you note that if I commit suicide today 89-12-06 it is not for economic reasons (for I have waited until I exhausted all my financial means, even refusing jobs) but for political reasons. Because I have decided to send the feminists, who have always ruined my life, to their Maker.... Being rather backward-looking by nature (except for science), the feminists have always enraged me. They want to keep the advantages of women (e.g. cheaper insurance, extended maternity leave preceded by a preventative leave, etc.) while seizing for themselves those of men." (quoted by Wikipedia)

More recently, in 2014, Elliot Rodger murdered six people near the UC Santa Barbara campus. Rodger also killed himself, citing his feelings of social rejection by women as the reason for his crime:

"I'm 22 years old and I'm still a virgin. I've never even kissed a girl. I've been through college for two and a half years, more than that actually, and I'm still a virgin. It has been very torturous. College is the time when everyone experiences those things such as sex and fun and pleasure. Within those years, I've had to rot in loneliness. It's not fair. You girls have never been attracted to me. I don't know why you girls aren't attracted to me, but I will punish you all for it. It's an injustice, a crime.... I don't know what you don't see in me. I'm the perfect guy and yet you throw yourselves at these obnoxious men instead of me, the supreme gentleman.... How could an inferior, ugly black boy be able to get a white girl and not me?" -- (Rodger's manifesto, quoted by Wikipedia)

Did Lépine and Rodger have some good points? Did they have valid grievances regardless of the regrettable way in which they both chose to express those grievances (mass murder)? I hope you won't have to think too hard before saying "no". Neither Lépine's sense of entitlement to social privileges, nor Rodger's sense of entitlement to sex and racial status, are reasonable.

In Why Does He Do That? Inside the Minds of Angry and Controlling Men, Lundy Bancroft (a counselor who co-founded the first program for abusive men in the US and has worked with abusive men for many years) shows that domestic abusers don't abuse because of their feelings, because they're out-of-control or angry, or because they are mentally ill or influenced by substances. They abuse because of their thoughts, beliefs, and attitudes, which create a coherent justification for abuse -- largely through beliefs that they are entitled to something from a woman, and are morally justified in punishing her if she doesn't provide it.

" abuser's core problem is that he has a distorted sense of right and wrong." (Bancroft, p. 35)

Likewise, Lépine believed that he had a right to a job and that women were oppressing him by being better job candidates than him. Rodger believed that he had a right to sex and that women were oppressing him by not sleeping with him. By killing women, they hoped to send a message to all women that interfering with men's wishes was dangerous. They killed in cold blood, uninfluenced by mental illness or uncontrollable rage. Both crimes were premeditated; both killers had moral theories that justified their actions. We know about those moral theories because both men wrote about them. The positions that men have a right to jobs and women do not, and that men have a right to sex and women have a moral obligation to provide it to men who want it, are political opinions. I hope it's obvious to you that these political opinions are wrong.

Last week, a manifesto written by a Google engineer surfaced; the manifesto resembles those of Rodger's and Lépine's, and you can [CW: explicit sexism, racism, and various other *isms, as well as gaslighting and manipulation] read it for yourself. The manifesto tells a subset of people who work at Google, "Your presence here is illegitimate and you don't belong." I know that's the message because I'm one of those people: I'm a trans man and thus, according to the document, am biologically worse at engineering than cis men like its author (although it's not exactly clear whether the author thinks that cis women's uteruses make them worse at coding -- in which case my skills would come into question -- or whether their hormones do -- in which case I'd be in the clear, phew!)

The manifesto expresses thoughts, beliefs and attitudes that are common to its author, Lépine, Rodger, and the domestic abusers Bancroft describes. It is written from a place of entitlement: like Lépine and Rodger but unlike some of the domestic abusers, the entitlement is not to just one specific woman's attention and service, but rather, to special privileges as white men and to submission and deference from all women, and all people of color, and everybody else occupying a lower position in the social hierarchy. Like Lépine, he's concerned that they're taking our jobs.

In response, Google's VP of Diversity, Integrity, and Governance -- in an email to all Google employees with the subject line "Affirming our commitment to diversity and inclusion—and healthy debate" -- said, "Part of building an open, inclusive environment means fostering a culture in which those with alternative views, including different political views, feel safe sharing their opinions. But that discourse needs to work alongside the principles of equal employment found in our Code of Conduct, policies, and anti-discrimination laws." Other executives expressed disagreement with the message in the manifesto while agreeing that the author had a good point about the "psychologically unsafe environment" for people with political beliefs like his. Some managers reiterated that it was important to be able to share different points of view at Google. In other words: he was wrong to say these things, but you can't help but sympathize with the poor guy -- he felt persecuted for his political views.

When you say that the manifesto writer had a point, you are saying that Rodger and Lépine had a point.

"...the abuser's problem lies above all in his belief that controlling or abusing his female partner is justifiable." (Bancroft, p. 35)
In the rest of this essay, I'm addressing you if you think the views in the manifesto are wrong but that the author has some valid points, or that the manifesto is a valuable contribution to healthy debate. I want to show you that these views need to be shut down, not debated with or sympathized with. I am not addressing people who substantially agree with the content of the manifesto. If that's you, then you might as well stop reading right here.

Read more... )

August 5th, 2017
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posted by [personal profile] cos at 03:59pm on 05/08/2017
Almost ten years ago I posted about scientists in Congress - at the time, there were four. I posted again four years ago, when Rush Holt was running for US Senate. His leaving Congress brought the number of scientists down to just one the following year.

Originally starting from just curiosity, I was dismayed by how few there were! I knew there weren't enough, since it was already showing quite obviously by 2007 that Congress did not have enough scientific perspective, but I though out of the 535 there would be, maybe, 15-20 scientists. In fact I don't think we've had more than 5 at the same time in decades. Maybe the next Congress will change that?

Donald Trump's War on Scientists Has Had One Big Side Effect: More than a dozen Democratic candidates with scientific backgrounds are running for Congress.

This article conflates "scientists" with a broader range of STEM fields. We actually already have a few engineers in Congress, and this article includes engineers, as well as doctors (of which we have even more - but many of them clearly don't have a scientific outlook). But even if you discount those, there are more people with a science background running than anytime I'm aware of, at least in decades. Let's keep an eye on this and see how it turns out in 2018.

P.S. The only scientist I'm aware of in Congress currently is Bill Foster, the same one who was first running for the office when I posted ten years ago. Are there any others you know of?
siderea: (Default)
Re, particularly the Press Ganey survey:

Oh, right. Questions about wait times, questions about courtesy, questions about cleanliness, questions about communication.

No questions about efficacy of or satisfaction with the medical care. To say nothing of more specific questions about what care was provided.

I mean, just a simple, "Was this appointment helpful to you?" would be nice. Also questions along the line of "Do you feel your medical problem successfully addressed?" and "Were you told what, if anything, you need to do for follow up care of your medical problem?" might be nice.

Because as it stands, nothing in the questionaire I got would have captured my discontent at certain appointments I've had where the treater was useless – "Don't know what's wrong with you, can't help you, can't think of anybody to refer you to. Good luck, have a nice life." – but by gum saw me on time and was polite.

But I don't think they want to know the answers to those questions. If they're doing with these surveys what that ethnography described, well, then, they're not interested in solving medical problems. They're interested in solving lucrative medical problems, which means dismissing expensive time-consuming mysteries from their offices as quickly and expeditiously as possible. As such, the answers to asking patients, "So was your condition actually treated?", is perhaps not a comfortable thing to contemplate.
August 4th, 2017
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posted by [personal profile] siderea at 03:18pm on 04/08/2017 under
Huh. I recently bought something for my business on Amazon using my business credit card. Amazon noticed, and emailed me:
Hello from Amazon, you're receiving this because you've recently placed an order on Amazon with your business-issued credit card.

Upgrade to a free Amazon Business account and access exclusive features.

Create a Free Account [link]

- Business-Only Pricing. - FREE Two-Day Shipping.
- Multi-User Accounts. - Business Analytics.

FREE Two-Day Shipping for business accounts apply for orders of at least $49 of eligible items, excluding gift-wrap fees and taxes. Learn more: [link]
Free two-day shipping would be nice. Is there some catch?

(Business-Only Pricing doesn't sound good – in my experience products and services for "business" are often extortionate, or, at best, simply discounts on bulk purchases that make no sense for my tiny business. Is Amazon Business any different?)
metahacker: A picture of white-socked feet, as of a person with their legs crossed. (Default)
August 3rd, 2017
metahacker: Half of an unusual keyboard, its surface like two craters with keys within. (keys)


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