Speaker for the Diodes

Dec. 19th, 2014

05:25 am - QotD

"Presumably man's spirit should be elevated if he can better review his shady past and analyze more completely and objectively his present problems. He has built a civilization so complex that he needs to mechanize his record more fully if he is to push his experiment to its logical conclusion and not merely become bogged down part way there by overtaxing his limited memory. His excursion may be more enjoyable if he can reacquire the privilege of forgetting the manifold things he does not need to have immediately at hand, with some assurance that he can find them again if they prove important." -- Vannevar Bush, inventor and scientist (b. 1890-03-11, d. 1974-06-30), "As We May Think", Atlantic Monthly, July 1945

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Dec. 18th, 2014

05:50 am - QotD

"Let us take the media, for example. As progressive Muslims, ours is a narrative that does not fit the dominant story line. We were interviewed by a public television station, akin to the BBC, for the tenth anniversary of 9/11. Afterwards, the executive producer said, 'your voice is irrelevant.' That is one example. Another is coverage of LGBT issues. They will interview the LGBT Muslim who has been discriminated against, and they will interview the homophobic Imam. But, even after interviewing me, they will not include us in the story. That adds to the Islamophobia. Because then the narrative is 'all Muslims are intolerant so why should we tolerate them?' [...] the progressive voices that are countering all that are not being promoted. The question we always hear from non-Muslims is 'how come Muslims are not speaking out?' It is simply not true." -- Ani Zonneveld, president of Muslims for Progressive Values, interviewed by Karima Bennoune 2014-12-08

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Dec. 17th, 2014

12:40 pm - Everything Shirt

OT1H trying to get away from T-shirts, OTOH this looks like something I need: http://www.khaoskomix.com/shop/en/107-all-the-things-shirt.html Posted here because I suspect a bunch of my friends need these.

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05:25 am - QotD

"The equations of creation have an elegance inside them,
 And I hope the mathematician knows the way they will resolve,
 For the world is full of miracles with common things to hide them,
 And when man is faced with mysteries, he sees more things to solve."

  -- from "The Moon Alone", by Seanan McGuire (posted 2008-12-20)

[Yow, this has been sitting in my quotes file for a few days short of six years? Huh. (I quoted a different section of it in 2008. Coincidentally at the start of Hanukkah that time, too (as I've just noticed).) I wonder what else I lost track of in here.]

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Dec. 16th, 2014

05:25 am - QotD

"In a world which furnishes so many employments which are useful, so many which are amusing, it is our own fault if we ever know what ennui (boredom) is, or if we are ever driven to the miserable resources of gaming, which corrupts our dispositions, and teaches us a habit of hostility against all mankind." -- Thomas Jefferson (b. 1743-04-13, d. 1826-07-04, US President 1801-1809), 1787

[Jefferson had played Cards Against Humanity? Anyhow, unrelated to the quotation ... to all my friends who are lighting that first candle tonight, happy Chanukkah! (I know I'm about twelve hours early, depending oon your time zone, as usual.)

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Dec. 15th, 2014

05:25 am - QotD

"I learned enough to name my rage about injustice when I was about 12 years old. Over the next ten years, thanks in part to the writers I read, I began to see rage as undirected power. And in the decade since then, I've practiced directing my power toward living well despite the status quo. My church's statements this week don't convert me to passive optimism. They drive me to keep working with the willing, whatever the institution chooses at this late stage.

"I keep living, despite a culture telling me lives like mine don't matter. I keep worshiping, despite church workers who teach that my kind of human being is ineligible for its membership, clergy, and kingdom. I keep working and creating, despite an economy stacked in hiring and in business development against people with my profile. I keep on keeping on because there's no other viable option: I will not yield to genocide or suicide; I will live and live well."

-- Keisha E. McKenzie (@mackenzian), 2014-12-12

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Dec. 14th, 2014

05:25 am - QotD

From the Quotation of the day mailing list, 2014-12-06:

"We are what we pretend to be, so we must be careful about what we pretend to be." -- Kurt Vonnegut

(submitted to the mailing lit by Mike Krawchuk)

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Dec. 13th, 2014

05:25 am - QotD

"I'd argue that nothing is less punk than a punk rock trivia app." -- Parker Marie Molloy, 2014-11-15

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Dec. 12th, 2014

05:25 am - QotD

"Want to know a secret, Melba toast? You think I'm crazy 'cause I don't know I'm not an Egyptian queen reincarnated on the planet Lovetron. But I do know.

"I'm crazy 'cause I don't care."

-- Dr. Berenice "Tigerlilly" Jones, in Skin Horse by Shaenon K. Garrity & Jeffrey C. Wells, 2014-12-09

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Dec. 11th, 2014

05:25 am - QotD

"If two men agree on everything, you may be sure that one of them is doing the thinking." -- Lyndon Johnson (b. 1908-08-27, d. 1973-01-22; US President 1963-1969)

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Dec. 10th, 2014

05:25 am - QotD

"No one shall be subjected to torture or to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment." -- Article 5 of The Universal Declaration of Human Rights, ( adopted by the General Assembly 1948-12-10)

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Dec. 9th, 2014

05:25 am - QotD

"[Bil] Browning [of The Bilerico Project], for his part, told ThinkProgress that he believes the Salvation Army is 'definitely moving in the right direction,' but suggests that 'they're trying to do it in an ultimately self-defeating manner' -- without offending the conservative Christian groups they've long been allied with. He noted that a big part of their effort this year involves responding individually to people on Twitter to reiterate that they do not discriminate. Browning calls this being 'a backdoor friend' to the LGBT community. 'They claim to be our friend, but they want us to enter through the back door so their other friends don't see us hanging out together,' he explained. 'That’s not good enough and it will ultimately doom their efforts at erasing the stigma of their past.'

[...] "As long as the group refuses to apologize and refuses to inform the public that it's made a big change to its doctrine and policies, 'they're just whistling in the wind and hoping that their outreach on social media helps to quiet down the outrage one confused person at a time.'"

-- from "Why You Should Still Be Skeptical Of The Salvation Army", 2014-12-08

[I have no idea whether the SA monitors FB references or not, but for an ironic example of their current approach on Twitter, see here or here. Note that the history that the SA is being called upon to atone for really does seem to require discussion of how each policy that's changed hasa been chang3d, and not their current "nothng to see here" approach.]

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Dec. 8th, 2014

05:25 am - QotD

"When you're drowning you don't think, I would be incredibly pleased if someone would notice I'm drowning and come and rescue me. You just scream." -- John Lennon (b. 1940-10-09, d. 1980-12-08)

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Dec. 7th, 2014

05:25 am - QotD

"In their Atlantic article, Kelling and Wilson recognized the racial implications of order policing. 'How do we ensure, in short, that the police do not become the agents of neighborhood bigotry?' they asked, before essentially shrugging and moving on. 'We can offer no wholly satisfactory answer to this important question.' Oh, well -- hopefully everything will work itself out.

"More than 30 years later, the answer seems clear to me: [the 'broken windows' policing strategy] will always become an agent of neighborhood bigotry, because broken windows encourages cops to define lower-class men as basically another species and to make ad hoc cultural judgments the linchpin of crime prevention strategies. This is how looking different transforms into looking dangerous. This is how Eric Garner dies, mumbling 'I can't breathe,' held in a chokehold by a white police officer who works for a department led by a man who believes that if 'you take care of the little things, then you can prevent a lot of the big things.' This is how you get thousands of marchers in the streets of New York City. Loose cigarettes today. Civil unrest tomorrow."

-- Justin Peters, 2014-12-05

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Dec. 6th, 2014

05:25 am - QotD

From the Quotation of the day mailing list, 2014-12-02:

""Now, Charles," he says, looking amused, putting Cartier links into the cuffs of his beautiful hand-made shirt, "you could have forewarned me--you left me out of the act entirely! At least you could have let me cue in a few chords as you ran through that Nijinsky routine. I congratulate you on your performance. But why didn't you and Juan inform me about the adagio you planned so that we could score it? I must say I never saw a large man so agile--I never saw anybody make such tremendous leaps! The gambado over the piano carrying your bass was colossal. When you exited after that I thought, 'That man's really afraid of Juan's knife and at the speed he's going he's probably home in bed by now.' But no, back you came through the same door with your bass still intact. For a moment I was hopeful you'd decided to sit down and play but instead you slashed Juan's chair in two with a fire axe! Really, Charles, that's destructive. Everybody knows Juan has a knife but nobody ever took it seriously--he likes to pull it out and show it to people, you understand. So I'm afraid, Charles--I've never fired anybody--you'll have to quit my band. I don't need any new problems. Juan's an old problem, I can cope with that, but you seem to have a whole bag of new tricks. I must ask you to be kind enough to give me your notice, Mingus."

"The charming way he says it, it's like he's paying you a compliment. Feeling honored, you shake hands and resign."

-- Charles Mingus, from his autobiography Beneath the Underdog.

(submitted to the mailing list by Terry Labach)

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Dec. 5th, 2014

05:25 am - QotD

"Being Republican is far more of a 'confusion' than being transgender - unfortunately it's also far more dire." -- Daniel Crommie, 2014-06-13

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Dec. 4th, 2014

05:25 am - QotD

"In order to carry out the fundamentalist program in practice, one would need a perfect understanding of the ancient language of the original text, if indeed the true text can be discerned from among variants. Furthermore, human beings are the ones who transmit this understanding between generations. Even if one wanted to follow the literal word of God, the need for people first to understand that word necessitates human interpretation. Through that process human fallibility is inextricably mixed into the very meaning of the divine word. As a result, it is impossible to follow the indisputable word of God; one can only achieve a human understanding of God's will." -- Elliot N. Dorff, 1988 (Dorff, Elliot N. and Rosett, Arthur, A Living Tree; The Roots and Growth of Jewish Law</8>, SUNY Press, 1988) [ via Wikipedia]

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Dec. 3rd, 2014

05:25 am - QotD

One thread from the #qfaith discussion on 2014-11-30:

@harmony_la_thot:   I've seen so many state LGB[t] orgs go silent or dissolve after marriage equality came to my state. It's disgusting.
@JMaseIII:   Check the HRC FB page. One post about police brutality then 15 about marriage!!!!
@harmony_la_tho:   lovely! smfh.

the fun part is that years ago I said this would happen and white queers called me cynical and bitter.

now it's happening right in front of our eyes they've nada to say but they keep pushing trickle-down civil rights theory
@JMaseIII:   We are bitter and angry if our lives don't get better!! If we pay attention to disparity we are the problem.
@harmony_la_tho:   I hope the orgs that use TWOC for blood money come out to support trans-led initiatives for trans people.

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Dec. 1st, 2014

05:25 am - QotD

"In the popular press the initial confusion surrounding AIDS would be amplified through the use of a variety of disease names: ‘gay cancer’, ‘gay pneumonia’ or even ‘the gay plague’. [...] These comments were said and printed despite the growing evidence at that time, that a second group, intravenous drug users (IVDU), were also being affected. The words would help to shape AIDS as a gay disease in the minds of America.

"It is also interesting to note that early evidence from Europe, disputing the fact that homosexuality was an essential diagnostic criterion was ignored. [...]

"Consequent to the initial connection between AIDS and the gay community, the popular press took little interest in it. This fact becomes increasingly apparent when compared to the media's tremendous response to the sudden outbreak of Legionnaire's Disease in 1976 and the cyanide-laced Tylenol scare in 1982. Both 'epidemics' threatened white, middle class, heterosexual families and therefore, were judged to be newsworthy. The quick and intensive media response (and subsequent public outcry) was at least partly responsible for the rapid understanding and solving of these crises. No such response existed during the initial outbreak of AIDS, even though it quickly killed more men than both Legionnaire's Disease and the Tylenol scare combined and only seemed to be getting worse."

 -- Aviva Leber, "AIDS: a Catalyst of Change for the Gay Community", 2005, University of Ottawa

[We often, especially in North America, think of AIDS/HIV as something that came into existence in the late 1970s. Wikipedia reminds us that, "Genetic research indicates that HIV originated in west-central Africa during the late nineteenth or early twentieth century" (likely by way of hunters who came into contact with SIV-infected ape or chimp blood), though it wasn't identified until 1981 and renamed AIDS in 1982.]


1 December is World AIDS Day.

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Nov. 30th, 2014

05:25 am - QotD

"Never forget that anticipation is an important part of life. Work's important, family's important, but without excitement, you have nothing. You're cheating yourself if you refuse to enjoy what's coming." -- Nicholas Sparks, Three Weeks With My Brother

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