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The Professor’s Views Are Loathsome, Stupid, and Ignorant, the Provost Said. But He Won’t Be Fired. - The Chronicle of Higher Education, Nov 2019
The provost didn’t equivocate. The professor’s views on race, gender, and sexuality, she said, are loathsome. Stunningly ignorant. Stupid.

But he won’t be fired, she said. The First Amendment forbids it. The constitutional right to free speech “is strong medicine,” she said, “and works both ways.”

Instead, no student will be forced to take a class from Eric B. Rasmusen, a professor of business economics and public policy at Indiana University at Bloomington, who this semester taught a required course for the public-policy degree.
universities  USA  politics  education 
8 weeks ago by pierredv
Indiana U. says can't fire professor over his 'racist, sexist, and homophobic' views - NBC Nov 2019
"The university provost said she condemns "in the strongest terms, Professor Rasmusen’s views on race, gender, and sexuality," but that is not a reason to violate the Constitution."

"Robel said in her statement that while the university will not try to fire Rasmusen, it will take steps to ensure that "students not add the baggage of bigotry to their learning experience."

No student will be required to take any of his classes, Robel said. In addition, she said he will have to use double-blind grading on assignments to "ensure that the grades are not subject to Professor Rasmusen’s prejudices.""
USA  universities  politics  education 
8 weeks ago by pierredv
Americans and Digital Knowledge | Pew Research Center, Oct 2019
"A majority of U.S. adults can answer fewer than half the questions correctly on a digital knowledge quiz, and many struggle with certain cybersecurity and privacy questions"

"Americans’ knowledge of the business side of social media companies is also relatively low. Just 29% of Americans correctly named WhatsApp and Instagram as two companies owned by Facebook."
PewResearch  surveys  polls  understanding  technology  misconceptions  USA 
8 weeks ago by pierredv
Barack Obama laid into call-out culture: 'That is not activism' - Insider Oct 2019
Former President Barack Obama laid into call-out culture Tuesday in a speech at the Obama Foundation summit.
"I do get a sense sometimes now among certain young people, and this is accelerated by social media, that the way of me making change is to be as judgmental as possible about other people and that's enough," Obama said.
"That is not activism, that is not bringing about change," he said. "The world is messy. There are ambiguities. People who do really good stuff have flaws."
USA  politics  activism  culture 
12 weeks ago by pierredv
Safety in America: How the definition is evolving - Sep 2019
"What does it mean to feel safe? As perceptions about safety change, so do discussions around how to reconcile random threats and everyday life without becoming overwhelmed. "
USA  politics  psychology  safety  culture  education 
12 weeks ago by pierredv
These 526 Voters Represent All of America. And They Spent a Weekend Together. - The New York Times
"These voters — 526 total, representative of Americans who are registered to vote — were invited to spend a weekend in a resort outside Dallas to prove that there might be a better way to disagree."
NYTimes  politics  USA  discussion 
october 2019 by pierredv
Us v Them: the birth of populism | John B Judis | The Long Read | Politics | The Guardian - Oct 2016
"Populist campaigns and parties often function as warning signs of a political crisis. In both Europe and the US, populist movements have been most successful at times when people see the prevailing political norms – which are preserved and defended by the existing establishment – as being at odds with their own hopes, fears, and concerns. The populists express these neglected concerns and frame them in a politics that pits the people against an intransigent elite. By doing so, they become catalysts for political change."

"During their heyday in the late 19th century, the populists of the People’s Party had a profound effect on American and – as it turned out – Latin American and European politics. It developed the logic of populism: the concept of a “people” arrayed against an elite that refused to grant necessary reforms. In American politics, the organisation was an early sign of the inadequacy of the two major parties’ views of government and the economy."

"In 1976, the Donald Warren published a study of “middle American radicals” (MARs). On the basis of extensive surveys conducted between 1971 and 72 and in 1975, Warren defined a distinct political group that was neither left nor right, liberal nor conservative. MARs “feel the middle class has been seriously neglected,” Warren wrote. They see “government as favouring both the rich and poor simultaneously”."
populism  politics  USA  history  progressivism  TheGuardian  longreads  radicalism 
october 2016 by pierredv
Trump poised to reshape GOP, no matter what - - Oct 2016
That’s because with both free trade and immigration Trump has exploited an existing split between GOP voters and leaders. He didn’t create it – just noticed it was there. In 2014, the Chicago Council on Global Affairs took a unique survey matching rank-and-file voters against their party elites. At the time, 55 percent of GOP voters said that immigrants and refugees coming into the US were a critical threat to the nation – but only 16 percent of Republican leaders held the same view. Only 27 percent of GOP voters said the US should accept Syrian refugees, while a whopping 71 percent of leaders said the US should accept them.

About a third of GOP voters opposed free trade pacts under almost all circumstances, according to the Chicago Council data. But 90 percent of GOP leaders disagreed, and supported such deals.

Demographic trends within the Republican Party underlie many of these attitudes. The GOP is becoming whiter, older, more male, and less educated than the nation as a whole, according to Pew Research data. During the years of the Obama presidency, GOP gains among whites and men have enabled the party to offset corresponding Democratic gains among nonwhites and women, according to Pew.

“Something else seems to be the primary motivator of GOP voters, something closer to the neighborhood of cultural conservatism and racial and economic grievance rather than a passion for small government,” wrote the data-oriented site FiveThirtyEight’s Clare Malone in July.
Trump  GOP  politics  USA  CSMonitor 
october 2016 by pierredv
What the Ghosts of Candidates Past Can Tell Us About the General Election: Mapping America's Ideological Terrain, Part 2 | RAND Jul 2016
"A candidate needs to unite supporters and in-party castaways to mount a strong challenge in the general election. That candidate can win big by luring out-party castaways away from the opponent or converting inactives into supporters. By understanding where each voter group lies in our map of America's ideological terrain, we can gain a sense of how Clinton and Trump might fare in the general election."
RAND  politics  polling  USA  Trump  Clinton 
july 2016 by pierredv
America Has Never Been So Ripe for Tyranny -- NYMag, Andrew Sullivan, May 2016
via John Helm
"Democracies end when they are too democratic. And right now, America is a breeding ground for tyranny."
". In the wake of his most recent primary triumphs, at a time when he is perilously close to winning enough delegates to grab the Republican nomination outright, I think we must confront this dread and be clear about what this election has already revealed about the fragility of our way of life and the threat late-stage democracy is beginning to pose to itself."
"Part of American democracy’s stability is owed to the fact that the Founding Fathers had read their Plato."
"Once, candidates built a career through experience in elected or Cabinet positions or as military commanders; they were effectively selected by peer review. That elitist sorting mechanism has slowly imploded. . . . This further widening of our democracy — our increased openness to being led by anyone; indeed, our accelerating preference for outsiders — is now almost complete."
"Sanders, who is sustaining his campaign all the way to California on the backs of small donors and large crowds, is, to put it bluntly, a walking refutation of his own argument."
"But it is precisely because of the great accomplishments of our democracy that we should be vigilant about its specific, unique vulnerability: its susceptibility, in stressful times, to the appeal of a shameless demagogue."
<On Eric Hoffer’s 1951 tract, The True Believer:>
"Hoffer’s core insight was to locate the source of all truly mass movements in a collective sense of acute frustration. Not despair, or revolt, or resignation — but frustration simmering with rage. Mass movements, he notes (as did Tocqueville centuries before him), rarely arise when oppression or misery is at its worst (say, 2009); they tend to appear when the worst is behind us but the future seems not so much better (say, 2016)."
"And so late-stage capitalism is creating a righteous, revolutionary anger that late-stage democracy has precious little ability to moderate or constrain — and has actually helped exacerbate."
"But elites still matter in a democracy. They matter not because they are democracy’s enemy but because they provide the critical ingredient to save democracy from itself."
"In terms of our liberal democracy and constitutional order, Trump is an extinction-level event. It’s long past time we started treating him as such."
politics  democracy  Plato  philosophy  NYMagazine  *  USA  longreads 
june 2016 by pierredv
Taking the American Pulse This Election Season | RAND
Background story
"For the past decade, a RAND survey has asked and answered that question on topics as diverse as the economic crisis, health care reform, and the political force of one Donald J. Trump.
It's called the RAND American Life Panel, and whereas many surveys present snapshots of public opinion, this one offers a stop-motion film of changing tastes and evolving attitudes. That approach helped make it one of the most accurate surveys in the 2012 presidential elections—and it's about to face another test in the crucible of 2016."
polling  surveys  RAND  USA  politics  statistics 
may 2016 by pierredv
Business in America: Too much of a good thing - Economist, Briefing Apr 2016
"Profits are too high. America needs a giant dose of competition"
Their prescription: "It would aim to unleash a burst of competition to shake up the comfortable incumbents of America Inc. It would involve a serious effort to remove the red tape and occupational-licensing schemes that strangle small businesses and deter new entrants. It would examine a loosening of the rules that give too much protection to some intellectual-property rights. It would involve more active, albeit cruder, antitrust actions. It would start a more serious conversation about whether it makes sense to have most of the country’s data in the hands of a few very large firms. It would revisit the entire issue of corporate lobbying, which has become a key mechanism by which incumbent firms protect themselves."
TheEconomist  usa  commerce  competition 
april 2016 by pierredv
Business in America: The problem with profits - Economist, Leader, Apr 2016
"Big firms in the United States have never had it so good. Time for more competition"
“Most of the remedies dangled by politicians to solve America’s economic woes would make things worse. ... Better to unleash a wave of competition. The first step is to take aim at cosseted incumbents. Modernising the antitrust apparatus would help. Mergers that lead to high market share and too much pricing power still need to be policed. But firms can extract rents in many ways.… The second step is to make life easier for startups and small firms.”
TheEconomist  usa  competition  commerce  opinion 
april 2016 by pierredv
This is actually what America would look like without gerrymandering - The Washington Post
"From a technological standpoint it's fairly straightforward -- a software engineer in Massachusetts named Brian Olson wrote an algorithm to do it in his spare time. As I described it in 2014, Olson's algorithm creates "optimally compact" equal-population congressional districts in each state, based on 2010 census data."
politics  usa  gerrymandering  WashingtonPost 
january 2016 by pierredv
David Runciman · How can it work?: American Democracy · LRB 21 March 2013
"American democracy is an amazing, fascinating, bewildering thing. There has never been anything else like it. Even now, as democracy becomes an ever more familiar feature of our world, there is still nothing like the American version. . . . Still, the promise has never entirely dissipated. And now we have a mixture of all these views of American democracy: lingering ideas of the promise, a continuing sense of the power, an ongoing preoccupation with the violence, but behind it all a return to the thought that was there at the beginning. It is starting to look implausible again. Can you really do politics like this and expect it to last?"
David-Runciman  LRB  podcasts  politics  USA 
january 2016 by pierredv
What NOT to look for in the first GOP debate - - Aug 2015
"Forget the fireworks, the tiptoeing around Donald Trump's histrionics, and all the Republican squabbling. Here's what really matters to voters in choosing a president"
CSMonitor  USA  elections  voting 
august 2015 by pierredv
Why Southern writers still captivate, 55 years after 'To Kill a Mockingbird' -
If there’s one thing Southerners can agree on now, it’s their literary tradition and their writers,” says William Gantt, who directs the Southern Literary Trail Pat Conroy, author of “The Prince of Tides,” joked in 1985 that his mother, “Southern to the bone,” once told him, “All Southern literature can be summed up in these words: ‘On the night the hogs ate Willie, Mama died when she heard what Daddy did to Sister.’ ”
CSMonitor  writing  USA  quotations 
july 2015 by pierredv
The Tragedy of the American Military - The Atlantic
"The American public and its political leadership will do anything for the military except take it seriously. The result is a chickenhawk nation in which careless spending and strategic folly combine to lure America into endless wars it can’t win." "The most biting satirical novel to come from the Iraq-Afghanistan era, Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk, by Ben Fountain, is a takedown of our empty modern “thank you for your service” rituals." "Chickenhawk Nation, based on the derisive term for those eager to go to war, as long as someone else is going" "A chickenhawk nation is more likely to keep going to war, and to keep losing, than one that wrestles with long-term questions of effectiveness." "The country thinks too rarely, and too highly, of the 1 percent under fire in our name."
military  war  policy  defense  politics  usa  *  theAtlantic 
january 2015 by pierredv
Colonial museums: A different story | The Economist
A glorious opening paragraph: QUAINT is not an obvious word to use about America—a country built on revolution, restless expansion and the unabashed pursuit of profits. Yet for years a cloud of quaintness hung about many of the country’s founding-places. Museums and historic sites depicted the birth of the United States as a morality tale and an Anglo-Saxon family dispute, pitting tyrannical King George and his redcoats against freedom-loving colonial subjects (helped, just a bit, by the French).
TheEconomist  writing  history  USA 
december 2013 by pierredv
How Personalities Differ Across America [MAPS] | Business Insider Australia
"according to a new study from researchers from the University of Cambridge, University of Texas at Austin, and the University of Helsinki, America may also be split up by three different psychological profiles. The paper, which was recently published the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, looked at 1.5 million responses gathered from five different online surveys and assessed respondents across five key personality traits: Openness, conscientiousness, extraversion, agreeableness, and neuroticism."
visualization  geography  maps  psychology  usa  infographics 
october 2013 by pierredv
West vs Asia education rankings are misleading - opinion - 07 January 2013 - New Scientist
skeptical take on value/meaning of tests of science and math ability Excerpts: Tienken... has since done a similar analysis of the 2003 PISA mathematics rankings and two measures of economic success...The study, to be published in April, again found no statistically significant relationship. These findings make TIMSS and PISA rankings seem irrelevant. But it could be worse than that. In many cases, high test scores correlate with economic failure.... In 2007, Keith Baker of the US Department of Education made a rough comparison of long-term correlations between the 1964 mathematics scores and several measures of national success decades later. Baker found negative relationships between mathematics rankings and numerous measures of prosperity and well-being. Countries scoring well on the tests were also less democratic.
USA  PISA  TIMSS  testing  education  Asia 
october 2013 by pierredv
Debunking Broadband’s Biggest Myths With Roslyn Layton | The Commercial Observer
"Roslyn Layton, a PhD fellow studying broadband at the Center for Communication, Media and Information Studies at Aalborg University and working for Strand Consult, debunks the most common myths about American broadband."
USA  broadband  policy 
july 2013 by pierredv
Ideas to Bolster Power Grid Run Up Against the System’s Many Owners - July 2013
Survey of US energy grid design: "a largely hypothetical three-year effort by hundreds of engineers to redraw the grid for the eastern two-thirds of the United States" “Given the history of this particular industry and its complexity, it is just not going to happen, at least not any time soon,” said James J. Hoecker, a former member of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, which has some jurisdiction over transmission lines. One problem, he said, is “resource nationalism,” in which individual states want to use local resources, whether they are coal or yet-to-be-built offshore wind, rather than importing from neighbors in a way that could be more economical.
USA  NYTimes  grid  electricity  energy 
july 2013 by pierredv
In rural Tennessee, a new way to help hungry children: A bus turned bread truck - The Washington Post
"Here, in the rural hills of Tennessee, is the latest fallout of a recession that officially ended in 2009 but remains without end for so many. More than 1 in 4 children now depend on government food assistance, a record level of need that has increased the federal budget and changed the nature of childhood for the nation’s poor."
hunger  school  meals  USA  WashingtonPost 
july 2013 by pierredv
The Whole Picture: Where America’s Broadband Networks Really Stand | The Information Technology & Innovation Foundation
"Taking the whole picture into account, this report finds that the United States has made rapid progress in broadband deployment, performance, and price, as well as adoption when measured as computer-owning households who subscribe to broadband. Considering the high cost of operating and upgrading broadband networks in a largely suburban nation, the prices Americans pay for broadband services are reasonable and the performance of our networks is better than in all but a handful of nations that have densely populated urban areas and have used government subsidies to leap-frog several generations of technology ahead of where the market would go on its own in response to changing consumer demands."
USA  report  x:ITIF  broadband  assessment 
february 2013 by pierredv
Who's filling America's church pews -
"In Puritan New England, Protestant and Catholic churches are declining while evangelical and Pentecostal groups are rising. Why the nation's most secular region may hint at the future of religion." "•Between 2000 and 2010, the Catholic church has lost 28 percent of its members in New Hampshire and 33 percent in Maine. It has closed at least 69 parishes (25 percent) in greater Boston. •Over the same period, the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC) established 118 new churches in northern New England, according to the 2010 Religion Census. About 50 of them inhabit buildings once owned by mainline churches."
CSMonitor  trends  culture  USA  religion 
december 2012 by pierredv
The poor in America: In need of help | The Economist
"America’s poor were little mentioned in Barack Obama’s re-election campaign. They deserve better"

"Time in prison makes a person more likely to earn less, more likely to have trouble holding on to a job and less likely to be married. Roughly three-quarters of high-school dropouts with prison records never make it above the bottom income quintile. The eightfold growth in the prison population from 1970 to 2010 has turned ever more poor decisions into poor lives."
prison  policy  politics  USA  poverty 
december 2012 by pierredv
Struggle For Smarts? How Eastern And Western Cultures Tackle Learning : Shots - Health News : NPR
"I think that from very early ages we [in America] see struggle as an indicator that you're just not very smart," Stigler says. "It's a sign of low ability — people who are smart don't struggle, they just naturally get it, that's our folk theory. Whereas in Asian cultures they tend to see struggle more as an opportunity." In Eastern cultures, Stigler says, it's just assumed that struggle is a predictable part of the learning process. Everyone is expected to struggle in the process of learning, and so struggling becomes a chance to show that you, the student, have what it takes emotionally to resolve the problem by persisting through that struggle.
**  meditation  struggle  npr  China  USA  learning  culture  motivation  education 
november 2012 by pierredv
flow visualization of partisan makeup of US House and Senate
**  xkcd  usa  history  infographic  visualization  politics 
october 2012 by pierredv
Pew's religion survey reveals a secular shift away from the religious right | Sarah Posner | Comment is free |
"According to Pew, there are now as many people who identify themselves as 'none' in religious affiliation as identify as 'evangelical'."
Pew  religion  theguardian  usa 
october 2012 by pierredv
Drones over U.S. get OK by Congress - Washington Times
The FAA Reauthorization Act, which President Obama is expected to sign, also orders the Federal Aviation Administration to develop regulations for the testing and licensing of commercial drones by 2015.
drones  UAV  usa  legislation  x:washingtontimes 
april 2012 by pierredv
DOJ review of flawed FBI forensics processes lacked transparency - The Washington Post
"A Washington Post review of the department’s actions shows an agency struggling to balance its goal of defending convictions in court with its responsibility to protect the innocent. The Justice Department’s decision to allow prosecutors to decide what to disclose to defendants was criticized at the time and allowed most of the process to remain secret. But by cloaking cases in anonymity, failing to ensure that defendants were notified of troubles with their cases, and neglecting to publicly report problems or recommend solutions, the task force obscured problems from further study. "
justice  injustice  USA  WashingtonPost  ** 
april 2012 by pierredv
Policing drug sales: Cleaning up the ’hood | The Economist March 2012
story on drug-market intervention (DMI) - trying to stop markets for drugs in neighborhoods rather than dealers Quote: "Third, prison as a deterrent does not work. If it did, America would be the safest country on earth."
drugs  usa  prison  economist  quotations 
march 2012 by pierredv
How to curb chronic homelessness? First, a home! - Jan 2012
"Permanent supportive housing, a movement to supply homeless people with housing first and deal with their other issues second, has made big strides in reducing homelessness this decade."
poverty  usa  homelessness  CSMonitor 
february 2012 by pierredv
CIRCULAR NO. A-119 Revised | The White House "Federal Participation in the Development and Use of Voluntary Consensus Standards and in Conformity Assessment Activities "
"this Circular directs agencies to use voluntary consensus standards in lieu of government-unique standards except where inconsistent with law or otherwise impractical"
regulation  OMB  standards  USA 
february 2012 by pierredv
USDOJ: Office of Dispute Resolution Homepage
"The mission of the Office of Dispute Resolution is to promote the effective use of alternative dispute resolution (“ADR”) processes. The office is responsible for developing policy and best practices for effective use of ADR processes in Department litigation; monitoring and evaluating the use of ADR throughout the Department; representing the Department in exchanges regarding ADR with the private sector, the federal government and representatives of foreign governments; and facilitating ADR use through training attorneys and funding private mediation in litigation and agency administrative disputes. The office also represents the Attorney General in the Interagency ADR Working Group, an organization which was created by the President and convened by the Attorney General to promote the use of ADR throughout the federal government."
law  regulation  usa  arbitration  ADR 
january 2012 by pierredv - Federal Government's Alternative Dispute Resolution Working Group - Janet Reno, Clinton era report
"We believe that every well-run agency should have at least one ADR program. Over the past year, the Working Group has worked to make this a reality. The Group has sponsored programs in the following areas: workplace, contracts and procurement, claims against the government, and civil enforcement. "
law  ADR  USA  regulation  arbitration 
january 2012 by pierredv
USDOJ: Office of Dispute Resolution: Resources: Constitutional Issues in Federal Arbitration, Sep 1995
"the Office of Legal Counsel no longer takes the view that the Appointments Clause, U.S. Const. art. II, § 2, cl. 2, bars the United States from entering into binding arbitration." - reasoning by which this conclusion was reached Via Hal Krent via Dennis Roberson Jan 2012
law  regulation  usa  arbitration  ADR 
january 2012 by pierredv
Harsh laws: Another one in the net | The Economist Jan 2012
another example of crazy US justice system; as in earlier pieces on prison, quote Harvey Silverglate, author of “Three Felonies a Day: How the Feds Target the Innocent”. He reckons two causes: "First, federal statutes are often so poorly written and so vague that they are in effect incomprehensible. This gives excessive discretion to bureaucrats and prosecutors, with their own career ambitions, who apply them haphazardly. Second, federal law has been moving away from mens rea (“guilty mind”), a common-law tradition that suggests that a person who had no idea he was breaking a law should not be accused of doing so."
justice  criminal-justice  crime  USA  prison  TheEconomist 
january 2012 by pierredv
Richest and ‘poorest’ members of Congress - The Washington Post
"Members of Congress with the highest and lowest net worth in 2010, according to an analysis by the Center for Responsive Politics based on disclosures filed by the lawmakers."
photography  people  politics  USA  WashingtonPost  money  lobbying 
december 2011 by pierredv
AT&T gains approval for Qualcomm spectrum buy | | Mobile Technology | Wireless Broadband | Wireless Carriers | RCR U.S. Wireless NewsMobile Technology | Wireless Broadband | Wireless Carriers | RCR U.S. Wireless News
The Qualcomm deal calls for AT&T to pick up 6 megahertz of nationwide, 700 MHz unpaired spectrum (D-Block) and 6 megahertz of unpaired 700 MHz spectrum (E-Block) covering approximately 70 million potential customers for $1.925 billion. Qualcomm had originally spent $558 million for those licenses during the 700 MHz auction.
cellular  USA  spectrum  markets  UHF  Qualcomm  AT&T 
december 2011 by pierredv
Wireless substitution: cell-only households
Peter Haynes comments: Cellphone-only homes aren't techies / early adopters, they're poor: 47% of those living in poverty are cell only
cellular  culture  poverty  via:peterhaynes  statistics  usa 
december 2011 by pierredv
Cyber-intruder sparks response, debate - The Washington Post Nov 2011
story of malware, and Federal response to Sep 2008 incident "Like the running debates over the use of drones and other evolving military technologies, rapid advances in computing capability are forcing complex deliberations over the appropriate use of new tools and weapons. " p. 2: "One likely scenario is that an American soldier, official or contractor in Afghanistan — where the largest number of infections occurred — went to an Internet cafe, used a thumb drive in an infected computer and then inserted the drive in a classified machine." p. 3: "Questions over the role of offense in cybersecurity deterrence began in the 1990s, if not earlier, said Martin Libicki, a Rand Corp. cyberwarfare expert. One reason it is so difficult to craft rules, he said, is the tendency to cast cyberwar as “good, old-fashioned war in yet another domain.” Another reason ... is the overlap between cybersecurity operations and the classified world of intelligence."
usa  cyberwar  russia  security  cybersecurity  WashingtonPost  * 
december 2011 by pierredv
For Obama’s green-car revolution, fits and starts - The Washington Post Nov 2011
"The Obama administration has poured roughly $5 billion in taxpayer funds into the electric-car industry, offering incentives to manufacturers, their suppliers and even car buyers who might want to go green. But analysts say the risk is rising that taxpayers in many cases will not see a return on their money soon, if ever. Instead, they warn that some federally subsidized companies could be forced to shut down in coming months."
politics  usa  subsidy  energy  taxes  WashingtonPost 
december 2011 by pierredv
Censorship? - Imgur - Time magazine covers in US vs. RoW
As GMSV put it: "Does Time magazine think Americans are stupider than the rest of the world? Ummm, maybe. "
magazines  media  via:gmsv  USA  culture 
november 2011 by pierredv
Class warfare. War on teachers. War on business. War in America? - commentary by Jeremy Shapiro
"Based on all the 'wars' partisan politicians claim their opponents are waging on innocent parts of America, it's a wonder any of us are still alive. The 'war' metaphor may win media coverage and rile voters, but it excludes the kind of debate that can actually solve problems."
war  metaphor  csmonitor  usa  politics 
november 2011 by pierredv
Real trends in word and sentence length = Language Log » Nov 2011
"The results suggest that mean word lengths have decreased slightly in these addresses over the past century — by 5% or so — while mean sentence lengths have been falling since the founding of the republic, and have undergone a cumulative drop of perhaps 50%."
politics  USA  via:gmsv  speeches  literature  language 
november 2011 by pierredv
Energy Department couldn’t manage stimulus money, watchdog says - The Federal Eye - The Washington Post
"In several of his investigations, Friedman has noted that the political push to quickly create jobs and spur economic development didn’t match up with economic realities on the ground. And while he credits the department for making significant progress in distributing the federal aid, 45 percent of stimulus dollars distributed by Energy still hadn’t been spent by state and local government as of Oct. 22. "
politics  USA  WashingtonPost  spending 
november 2011 by pierredv
Why parents help their children lie to Facebook about age: Unintended consequences of the ‘Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act’ - boyd, Argittai, Schultz, Palfrey
Abstract "Facebook, like many communication services and social media sites, uses its Terms of Service (ToS) to forbid children under the age of 13 from creating an account. ... Yet in spite of such restrictions, research suggests that millions of underage users circumvent this rule and sign up for accounts on Facebook. ... Our data suggest that, by creating a context in which companies choose to restrict access to children, COPPA inadvertently undermines parents’ ability to make choices and protect their children’s data. Our data have significant implications for policy–makers, particularly in light of ongoing discussions surrounding COPPA and other age–based privacy laws."
ex  FirstMonday  uSA  legislation  privacy  COPPA  children 
november 2011 by pierredv
The world of adolescence: The best days of their lives? | The Economist
Review of Lost in Transition: The Dark Side of Emerging Adulthood. By Christian Smith, Kari Christoffersen, Hilary Davidson and Patricia Snell Herzog "The book focuses on five areas: how young adults make ethical decisions; what role consumerism plays in their lives; why they drink so much; why they have sex so indiscriminately; and why ... they are in fact disengaged from civic and political life." Their ethics are disturbing "What is striking about the responses to a whole string of questions probing how these young people deal with moral issues is how few of them seem to grasp what is being asked. ... Very few seem to think that right and wrong are rooted in anything outside personal experience."
trends  books  USA  teens  morality  culture  aging  adolescence  TheEconomist 
november 2011 by pierredv
SoSP Central | Science of Science Policy
"The goal of the Science of Science Policy community is to provide a scientifically rigorous and quantitative basis for science policy. The website provides a central location with news, information and research to help inform the Federal Government's science management decisions. We welcome the active engagement and participation of Federal practitioners, researchers, and others in the broader science community. "
USA  policy  science 
october 2011 by pierredv
Ann Marlowe: The Truth About Who Fights for Us -
The US military, particularly the Army, is NOT poor and black "In 2008, using data provided by the Defense Department, the Heritage Foundation found that only 11% of enlisted military recruits in 2007 came from the poorest one-fifth, or quintile, of American neighborhoods (as of the 2000 Census), while 25% came from the wealthiest quintile. Heritage reported that "these trends are even more pronounced in the Army Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC) program, in which 40% of enrollees come from the wealthiest neighborhoods, a number that has increased substantially over the past four years.""
trends  USA  poverty  x:wsj  race  military 
october 2011 by pierredv
Prisoners' Rights - Recent Court Cases, Issues and Articles | American Civil Liberties Union
The ACLU National Prison Project is dedicated to ensuring that our nation’s prisons, jails, and other places of detention comply with the Constitution, domestic law, and international human rights principles, and to ending the policies that have given the United States the highest incarceration rate in the world. We promote a fair and effective criminal justice system in which incarceration is used only as a last resort, and its purpose is to prepare prisoners for release and a productive, law-abiding life at the earliest possible time.
USA  prison  advocacy  charities  ACLU 
october 2011 by pierredv
No Consensus About Whether Nation Is Divided Into ‘Haves’ and ‘Have-Nots’ | Pew Research Center for the People and the Press
"Despite an extended economic downturn, the public’s impression of whether the nation is economically divided remains relatively stable. While 45% say American society is divided between “haves” and “have-nots,” 52% say it is incorrect to think of the country this way. This is comparable to the balance of opinion a year ago."
USA  recession  poverty  class  x:pew  opinion 
september 2011 by pierredv
Analysts: There's No Spectrum Shortage
"Jason Bazinet and Michael Rollins of Citi Investment Research & Analysis concluded that only about 35.7% of spectrum set aside for wireless communications, is being used for that purpose" "A big chunk of the nation's wireless frequency spectrum, they argue, is presently held by companies that have no plans, immediate or otherwise, to monetize it. They tally that 538 MHz of wireless spectrum has been allocated to U.S. firms, though some 192 MHz is actually in use. And according to their calculation, at least 90% of that amount is used for 2G, 3G, and 3.5G communications. Those older protocols are yielding transmission speeds of less than 1 megabit per second (Mbps) during peak usage hours."
shortage  USA  spectrum  via:stevecrowley 
september 2011 by pierredv
Liberate liberal arts from the myth of irrelevance -
"Today’s employers want workers who are thinkers. To meet the demands of the 21st century student and economy, a new model of liberal arts is emerging – one tied to hands-on experience" ". . .the vast majority of employers say they are less interested in specialized job proficiencies. Instead, they favor analytical thinking, teamwork, and communication skills – the broad intellectual and social competencies available through a liberal arts education."
education  USA  csmonitor  opinion 
september 2011 by pierredv
Accelerating Health Care Costs Wiping Out Much of Americans' Income Gains | RAND
"Fast-rising health care costs have eaten nearly all the income gains made by a median-income American family of four over the past decade, leaving them with just $95 per month in extra income, after accounting for taxes and price increases, according to a new RAND Corporation study. "
healthcare  USA  RAND 
september 2011 by pierredv
Labor Day struggle for unions and Obama -
"Unlike a time when most unionized workers toiled in factories and mines, most today are public employees – teachers, police officers, firefighters, and office workers among them – on government payrolls."
usa  politics  unions  csmonitor 
september 2011 by pierredv
A decade after the 9/11 attacks, Americans live in an era of endless war - The Washington Post
Today, radical religious ideologies, new technologies and cheap, powerful weapons have catapulted the world into “a period of persistent conflict,” according to the Pentagon’s last major assessment of global security. “No one should harbor the illusion that the developed world can win this conflict in the near future,” the document concludes.
war  trend  USA  WashingtonPost 
september 2011 by pierredv
For Many Seniors, There May Be No Retirement - Aug 11
"ore than three in five U.S. workers in their 50s and 60s plan on working past 65 -- and 47% of that group say they'll do so because they'll need the money or health benefits"
ageing  retirement  x:wsj  usa  factoids 
august 2011 by pierredv
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