thinking about language and meaning

topic posted Tue, April 24, 2012 - 7:48 PM by  libramoon

CISPA Offers Choice between Security and Liberty

"the bill has received harsh criticism from groups such as the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), Center for Democracy & Technology (CDT), and Anonymous. Now, get ready to put all those acronyms to use. The EFF accuses Congress of using fear of cyber threats to distract the public from the bill’s infringements on free speech. To that, CDT adds encroachment on Americans’ fourth amendment right to freedom from unreasonable search and seizure. According to CDT, “CISPA has a very broad, almost unlimited definition of the information that can be shared with government agencies […] is likely to lead to expansion of the government’s role in the monitoring of private communications [… and] is likely to shift control of government cybersecurity efforts from civilian agencies to the military.”

Strategies for Healing the Psychological Impact of Medical Illness

"When you are a chronic patient, every day requires coping with pain and fear of not feeling well or feeling worse. I don’t think there is a way around it, but I think there is a way through it.
I think that a dedication to self-care, to things that restore energy and soothe, is crucial. I developed a habit of transcendental meditation that I still continue today because of its benefits in grounding, centering and strength building."

Charles Bernstein: The Truth in Pudding

"Poetry is metadata without code, free-base tagging, cascading style sheets with undefined markers.
The role of teaching poetry, or of poetry criticism, is not to overrule difficulty, as in acourt of law, but to sustain it – to recognize the ways that resistance to easy assimilation might sustain our engagement with the poem and in the process provide aesthetic pleasure and intellectual challenge."


"Life is a project. The moment they are born people are dropped into a world that makes many demands and certain allowances. Either you equip yourself to deal with human unhappiness and the rigors of living, or you will find yourself dealing with them in ways that make you even unhappier. One excellent way to deal with your life-as-project is the way that I’ve been describing: by following an existential program that focuses on your ability to create the psychological experience of meaning."

Wonkbook: Can a French Socialist save the euro zone?

"Socialist" doesn't mean what it once did in France. Hollande's reputation is as a man of the center-left. A compromiser. A dealmaker. And yet, markets don't much like him. For one thing, he wants to create a 75 percent tax bracket for income over $1.3 million a year. For another, he says things like, "My true adversary...has no name, no face; he belongs to no party; he will never declare his candidacy. He will not be elected, yet he governs. My enemy is the world of finance." (Try to imagine, by the way, a major American politician saying that.) "

Project Brainstorm: Using Neuroscience to Connect College Students with Local Schools

Although the employment prospects for recent college graduates appear to be poor [17], historically evidence shows that having a college degree significantly increases the earning potential and decreases unemployment [18]. Project Brainstorm primarily aims to provide college students practical use of their knowledge through teaching, while reaching out to a newer generation of students to motivate them to pursue a higher education in the sciences. In light of the critical need for properly trained science teachers [19], exposing undergraduate neuroscience students to the K-12 environment can motivate them to consider teaching as a viable and rewarding career. Furthermore, we are also keenly aware that college enrollment in life science majors is dismally low. For instance, in 2003–2004 only 4% of entering college students declared a biological or biomedical science-related major, with only 20% of them successfully completing the bachelor’s degree [20]. This lack of interest in science might stem from poor science education and achievement during primary and especially during secondary education [21],[22]. However, this negative influence can be mitigated by allowing young scientists to interact with school children early on [23], something that Project Brainstorm addresses directly.

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