Recent reads.

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See it, touch it, feel it: Team develops invisible 3-D haptic shape. Phys Org (Dec. 2014). (with VIDEO) [WHAT. -Ed.]

A long list of sex acts just got banned in UK porn. Hooton, C., The Independent (Dec. 2014). [No seriously, WHAT. -Ed.]

Wait A Minute–Let’s Hear From Some Actual Police Officers Before We Rush To Judgment. Dartagnan, Daily Kos (Dec. 2014). [TRIGGER WARNING: racist as fuck. -Ed.]

More Black people killed by police than were lynched during Jim Crow. Taylor, A.V., Bay View (Oct. 2014).

Charges Dropped For Cop Who Fatally Shot Sleeping 7-Year-Old Girl. Moreh B.D.K., for Counter Current News via MintPress News (Dec. 2014).

How to Be a Feminist (According to Stock Photography). Sad and Useless (Dec. 2013). [OMFG hilarious! But this one is all kinds of awesome:

feministdriller-Ed.]

Kirk Cameron’s Saving Christmas voted worst film ever with 1.3 out of 10 stars on IMDb. Zhao, H., MailOnline (Dec. 2014). [OMG SHOCKING. -Ed.]

Cosby and Ferguson: Why Addressing Gender Violence and Racial Violence Is Not Either/Or Option. Cambron, A., Moyers & Co., (Dec. 2014).

Death and Injustice: How Can Humanists Respond? Christina, G., The Humanist (Dec. 2014).

Prosecutor Who Let Darren Wilson Slide Is Charging A Black Cop For Hitting A Suspect’s Hand. Parker, J., Addicting Info (Nov. 2014).

UGA study finds it’s mean boys, not mean girls, who rule at school. Ayer, R., UGA Today (Dec. 2014).

3 Shortcuts to Not Being a Terrible Person. Clay, F., Cracked (Nov. 2014).

Pregnant hero lays into anti-abortion protesters outside of a clinic. Fox, M., Happy Place (Dec. 2014). (VIDEO) [Badass. -Ed.]

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For the Quote collection:

Considering these two sets of circumstances — Ferguson and Cosby — there is no choosing. This is not “one or the other.” This is both and then some. Racial violence does not trump gender violence, and gender violence does not trump racial violence. Oppression is oppression. -Andrea Cambron

Now the haters and atheists are coming out of the woodwork, attempting to hammer your good work (they rallied to drop your rating super low). They are attempting, once again, to ruin Saving Christmas for everyone. -Kirk Cameron [Great work, everyone. -Ed.]

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PLZ NOTE: Acquisition of links and/or bon mots for the Palace Library does not imply the Palace’s 100% agreement with or endorsement of any content, organization or individual.

Recent reads.

library4The Staggeringly High—And Shockingly Under-Reported—Rate of White on White Murder. Allon, J., AlterNet (Aug. 2014). (“36 percent of those killed by whites are women, a far higher percentage than what you see with murderers who are black.”)

Video Game Reviewer Is Contacting the Mothers of Her Online Harassers. Aran, I., Jezebel (Nov. 2014). [Hahaha. Awesome. -Ed.]

8 Ways You Can See Einstein’s Theory of Relativity in Real Life. Emspak, J., Live Science (Nov. 2014).

Police Behaving Badly 12.1.14. Tony, The Shoops Roost (Dec. 2014).

The Ferguson Masterpost: How To Argue Eloquently & Back Yourself Up With Facts. Manduley, A., [smut & sensibility] (Nov. 2014). [h/t Tony].

Tiny 23,000-year-old limestone ‘Venus’ unearthed in France. Agence France-Presse via Raw Story (Nov. 2014).

Former Philadelphia Police Officer Ray Lewis Explains Why He’s Standing With Protesters In Ferguson. Levine, S., The Huffington Post (Nov. 2014).

7 hipster ‘superfoods’ that aren’t really that super. Barrett-Ibarria, S., Raw Story (Nov. 2014).

A Student Has Died After She Confronted A Group Of Men Harassing Teenage Girls. Mack, D., Buzzfeed (Nov. 2014). [Remember, people: street harassers are only trying to make the world a better place by giving compliments! -Ed.]

The Long, Dark Shadows of Plutocracy. Moyers & Company, youtube.com (Nov. 2014). (VIDEO). [h/t nubs]

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PLZ NOTE: Acquisition of links and/or bon mots for the Palace Library does not imply the Palace’s 100% agreement with or endorsement of any content, organization or individual.

Recent reading.

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There’s Been HOW Many Pipeline Spills in Alberta in The Last Four Months?? Gwennedd, Daily Kos (Nov. 2014). (“Our main media, CBC, does not provide any coverage of the many, many spills and gas releases that happen every month, nor the efforts to clean up the messes. They’re simply not considered news.”)

Darren Wilson Breaks His Silence: I’m Sorry, And I Would Shoot Michael Brown Again. Badash, D., The New Civil Rights Movement (Nov. 2014). [#sorrynotsorry -Ed.]

Near-collisions between drones, airliners surge, new FAA reports show. Whitlock, C., The Washington Post (Nov. 2014).

Barack Obama, Ferguson, and the Evidence of Things Unsaid: Violence works. Nonviolence does too. Coates, T.N., The Atlantic (Nov. 2014).

Do not judge a person, until you know their story. oldnerdybasterd, The Meta Picture (Nov. 2013).

The Feminist Vampire Movie That Teaches ‘Bad Men’ a Gory Lesson. Barcella, L., Jezebel (Nov. 2014).

The Debunking Handbook. John Cook, J. and Lewandowsky, S., Skeptical Science (Jan. 2012). (pdf)

‘I can’t think of a time when it was worse’: US abortion doctors speak out. McVeigh, K., The Guardian (Nov. 2014).

Women find their voice in Ferguson protest movement. Pearce, M., Los Angeles Times (Nov. 2014).

I Belong to Me: Learning Agency & Consent Outside Christianity. Kelly, D., Patheos (Nov. 2014).

Everything We Know So Far About The Oil Rig Explosion In The Gulf Of Mexico. Atkin, E., Think Progress (Nov. 2014).

Violence isn’t the answer, unless I’m asking the question. Cromwell, I., Crommunist (Nov. 2014).

Man stabbed 9 times after asking catcaller to stop harassing his girlfriend. Kutner, J., Salon (Nov. 2014).

Battered Victim Marissa Alexander Back In Jail On Plea Bargain – Florida Injustice Wins Again. Salzillo, L., Daily Kos (Nov. 2014).

No One Wanted to Talk About Bill Cosby’s Alleged Crimes Because He Made White America Feel Good About Race. Traister, R., New Republic (Nov. 2014).

Bad Teeth, Bad People: Another Way Privileged America Shames The Poor. Parker, E., If You Only News (Nov. 2014).

5 Thanksgiving Disasters You’re Probably Not Prepared For. Cheese, J., Cracked (Nov. 2011).

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PLZ NOTE: Acquisition of links and/or bon mots for the Palace Library does not imply the Palace’s 100% agreement with or endorsement of any content, organization or individual.

Reads.

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“Down Outright Murder”: A Complete Guide to the Shooting of Michael Brown by Darren Wilson. Devereaux, R., The Intercept (Nov. 2014).

After 13 years, 2 wars and trillions in military spending, terrorist attacks are rising sharply. Ingraham, C., The Washington Post (Nov. 2014).

As Sioux Tribe Calls Keystone XL an “Act of War”, TransCanada Hires PR Firm to Probe Critics. Democracy Now! (Nov. 2016) (with VIDEO).

Topless Femen deface Christian cross in Vatican. RT.com (Nov. 2014) (with VIDEO). (“Femen have taken their brash form of activism to shockingly new heights (or depths), simulating anal sex with crucifixes outside the Vatican to protest the Pope’s alleged meddling in politics.”) [Hahaha. Awesome. For a…different take, which I first thought was satire, see here. -Ed.]

Insecure Men Outraged That Smarter Man Recognizes Sexism And Apologizes to Women. Opal, K. (Nov. 2014). (“This is no longer about Matt & Rosetta. This is now about men being outraged that women made Matt reconsider…Matt Taylor apologized and moved on. But it seems that a lot of men were pissed off that a man apologized to women for having done something that perpetuated sexism.”)

Black students walk out over school official’s tweet: ‘Every white girl’s father’s worst nightmare’. Edwards, D., Raw Story (Nov. 2014). [Jeezus. -Ed.]

Lack of access to health insurance keeps U.S. premature birth rate near Somalia’s. Ingraham, C., The Washington Post (Nov. 2014). [USA! USA! USA! -Ed.]

Barbie F*cks It Up Again. Ribon, P., Gizmodo (Nov. 2014) [OMFG. LOL! -Ed.]
(related: Barbie computer engineer story withdrawn after sexism row.)

Surprise! The war on abortion rights is actually a referendum on women’s “place” in society. A group of protesters explain why they believe motherhood is the only and most important choice for women. McDonough, K., Salon (Nov. 2014) (with VIDEO). [Wow! I am so surprised! -Ed.]

The Rehtaeh Parsons Verdict Just Set a Horrible Precedent for Rape Victims Everywhere. Plank, E., Mic (Nov. 2014).

Transgender activists seek laws, acceptance, to combat violence. Guilbert, K., Reuters (Nov. 2014).

Congress Is Irrelevant on Mass Surveillance. Here’s What Matters Instead. Greenwald, G., The Intercept (Nov. 2014).

Sexual Surveillance of Women is a Consequence of Conservative Norms, Not Liberal Social Mores. Chemaly, S., Huffington Post (Nov. 2014).

Canadian Mother Gives Birth While On Vacation In The U.S., Faces $1 Million Hospital Bill. Culp-Ressler, T., Think Progress (Nov. 2014).

A Rape on Campus: A Brutal Assault and Struggle for Justice at UVA. Erdely, S.R., Rolling Stone (Nov. 2014).

Geckos inspire ‘Spider-Man’ gloves. BBC News (Nov. 2014).

Who Profits From Poverty? Films for Action/The #GlobalPOV Project (Nov. 2014) (VIDEO). [h/t nubs]

Why No One Can Design a Better Speculum. Eveleth, R., The Atlantic (Nov. 2014). (“The gynecological device may have an ethically fraught history, but it’s hard to improve on the design.”)

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For the Quote collection:

A lot of times, the simple answer to the specious question, “Why would he do something like that?” is, horribly, “Because he can.” -Melissa McEwan

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PLZ NOTE: Acquisition of links and/or bon mots for the Palace Library does not imply the Palace’s 100% agreement with or endorsement of any content, organization or individual.

Recent reading.

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Jehovah’s Witness leader complains: Gay people are plotting to put everyone in ‘tight pants’. Garcia, A., Raw Story (Nov. 2014). (LOLOL! -Ed.)

Petitioning Girl Scouts of the USA: Re-model the Barbie brand Girl Scout doll to be realistic. Chiu, K., change.org (Nov. 2014). (“I was so upset to see the new official Girl Scout Barbie — a doll that does not represent the diversity or mission of the Girl Scouts, and which, of all possible things, is dressed in high-heeled hiking boots.” WHAT. -Ed.)

New York City police will stop making arrests for low-level marijuana possession. Francescani, C., Reuters via Raw Story (Nov. 2014).

Notes from a Pornographer on Sexist Sexual Imagery and Behavior. Christina, C., Freethoughtblogs (Nov. 2014). (“The idea that sex-positivity and sexual liberation means everybody expressing every sexual thought and acting on every sexual desire, the minute it pops into our heads — this is bullshit.”)

The Psychology of Spanking. [No, not the fun kind. -Ed.] (“eliminating corporal punishment of children is ‘a key strategy for reducing and preventing all forms of violence in societies.’”)

How the drug war blocked research into a promising experimental PTSD therapy​: ecstasy. Ehrenfreund , M., The Washington Post (Nov. 2014). (“Initial research suggests MDMA, used in the party drug ecstasy, could be a powerful treatment for veterans dealing with the trauma of war.”)

The flying of unauthorized drones at stadiums prompts safety concerns. Whitlock, C., The Washington Post (Nov. 2014).

Buy Your Daughter All the Butch Dolls You Want, She Still Won’t Be Able to Get an Abortion in Texas. Vargas-Cooper, N., The Intercept (Nov. 2014). (“We should disabuse ourselves of old ideas, especially this hold-over notion from the baby-boomer generation that somehow social institutions can be jammed, subverted, reformed, or overthrown through buying stuff.”)

MIT’s Crazy Materials Could Make for Self-Assembling Ikea Furniture. Flaherty, J., Wired (Nov. 2014).

Why Washington Continues to Beat the War and Disease Drums: Escalation is now a structural fact embedded in the war in the Middle East and the Ebola crisis here at home. Engelhardt, T., The Nation (Nov. 2014).

Clashes at protest over Mexico student deaths: Masked protesters, demonstrating over suspected killing of 43 students in September, clash with riot police in Acapulco. Al Jazeera (Nov. 2014).

The Tiny Police Department in Southern Oregon That Plans to End Campus Rape. Van Syckle, K., The Cut (Nov. 2014).

Soleá, the Flamenco of Seville. The New Yorker (Nov. 2014). [VIDEO.]

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PLZ NOTE: Acquisition of links and/or bon mots for the Palace Library does not imply the Palace’s 100% agreement with or endorsement of any content, organization or individual.

Recent readz.

library4The $9 Billion Witness: Meet JPMorgan Chase’s Worst Nightmare. Taibbi, M., Rolling Stone (Nov. 2014). [Important reading, especially for anyone who mistakenly believes the U.S. is a democracy operating under the rule of law. -Ed.]

Top 10 Jesus Pranks. JUST FOR LAUGHS GAGS via youtube. [h/t SJ] [OMFG LOL. -Ed.]

Forget the 1%. It is the 0.01% who are really getting ahead in America. The Economist (Nov. 2014). (“Rising wealth inequality could presage the return of an 18th century inheritance society, in which marrying an heir is a surer route to riches than starting a company.”)

Nigel Farage’s new friend in Europe: ‘When women say no, they don’t always mean it’. Graham-Harrison, E., The Guardian (Nov. 2014). [I swear this article reads like an Onion satire, and this Janusz Korwin-Mikke d00d comes off like a comic book supervillain—and yet people vote for him. He says there is no proof Hitler knew about the Holocaust, and that Mussolini was trying to protect Jews; also FYI “the attitudes of men are passed to women by way of the semen which penetrates the tissue”; and he wants to convert part of the EU headquarters into a giant brothel. WHAT. He might actually be onto something legit about abolishing democracy, though, since it gives power to people like him. -Ed.]

Life Size Tyrannosaurus SkeletonHammacher Schlemmer (Nov. 2014). [Grab this year’s hottest holiday gift for each of your friends and family for the low, low price of $100,000! Treat yourself to one, too. -Ed.]

trex
CHAPPIE – Official Movie Trailer. Sony Pictures Entertainment via youtube (in theaters March 2015). [OMG OMG OMG I LOOOOOVED Neill Blomkamp’s District 9 and Elysium—plus there is no such thing as “enough Sharlto Copley.” -Ed.]

Even if you believe women “should” like cat-calling, that’s no excuse to do it. Marcotte, A., Raw Story (Nov 2014). (“My boyfriend doesn’t like eggs. My mom doesn’t like punk rock. These are things I like. Do I react to this difference of opinion by constantly shoving eggs in his face or blaring punk rock at her while saying, ‘You SHOULD like it and I’m going to KEEP DOING IT until you learn to like it!’ No, that would make me an asshole. So even if you think women should like being hollered at all fucking day—and again, I recommend having someone text you banalities 100 times a day to make sure you really think that it’s so wonderful getting all this attention before you open your fool mouth again on the subject—women told you they don’t like it. Persisting is clearly just an effort to hurt and punish them for not giving you what you want.”)

Separating Church and State Still an Issue in the US. Bader, E.J., Truthout (Nov. 2014). [h/t SJ] [Christ. This is just what we need: theocracies. Dear Lard, won’t someone think of the children? -Ed.]

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For the Quote collection, a new acquisition from the late, great Carl Sagan, whose birthday is today:

“If some good evidence for life after death were announced, I’d be eager to examine it; but it would have to be real scientific data, not mere anecdote. As with the face on Mars and alien abductions, better the hard truth, I say, than the comforting fantasy. And in the final tolling it often turns out that the facts are more comforting than the fantasy.”
Please join the Palace’s Carl Sagan Day celebration in The Bar today, where we will be serving Pale Blue Martinis.
bluemartini-with-twist-david-thompsonPHOTO: Blue Martini with Twist, David Thompson.
The Carl Sagan Pale Blue Martini:
Grey Goose vodka, Blue Curacao, fresh lime juice, twist.
Cheers for a man who inspired so many people to pursue science, skepticism and critical thinking. Our pale blue dot is a better world for having had him on it.

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PLZ NOTE: Acquisition of links and/or bon mots for the Palace Library does not imply the Palace’s 100% agreement with or endorsement of any content, organization or individual.

Reads.

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Federal appeals court rules in favor of gay marriage ban. Sewell, D., ABC-TV Eyewitness News (Nov. 2014).

Americans Are Working So Hard It’s Actually Killing People. Kaplan, E., The Nation (Oct. 2014). (“businesses are not hiring new workers; they’re just expecting the old workers to work more, and spitting them out after they get injured.”)

Despite Election Losses, Obama Still Sees Hope For Bipartisanship. McMorris-Santoro, E., BuzzFeed (Nov. 2014). (Dear Lard, we are soooo fucked. -Ed.)

Could a common blood pressure drug completely reverse diabetes? Medical News Today (Nov. 2014).

Why Feminism Needs Men. Solnit, R., The Nation (Nov. 2014).  [h/t SJ]

The 5 Most Important Things They Never Taught You in Sex Ed. Thomas, M., Cracked (Nov. 2014).

Bats Make Calls to Jam Rivals’ Sonar—First Time Ever Found. Arnold, C., National Geographic (Nov. 2014).

Adam Savage on #Gamergate and Harassment of Women Online. Watson, R., Skepchick (Nov. 2014). [with VIDEO.]

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PLZ NOTE: Acquisition of links and/or bon mots for the Palace Library does not imply the Palace’s 100% agreement with or endorsement of any content, organization or individual.

Recent reading.

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First transformer flying car ready for production. RT.com (Oct. 2014). [with VIDEO] (“world’s first production-ready flying car, which transforms from an automobile to a plane in just several seconds, has been unveiled to the public in Vienna.” OMG WANT. -Ed.) [h/t nubs]

Sentencing reform and how to right the drug war’s wrongs. Steigerwald, L., The Washington Post (Nov. 2014). (“One of the more fascinating, though politically unrealistic suggestions for what to do about this mess is one offered by a Green Party candidate for governor of New York: Howie Hawkins suggests releasing all drug prisoners, and putting together a “panel on reconciliation” between them and their communities and governments. They want voting rights restored, school grants restored, help for children of the former cons, and prevention of would-be employers asking about criminal histories.” We will of course be voting for Mr. Hawkins today for governor of New York. -Ed.)

Henry Darger. Wikipedia (see also: Google image search). (“famous for his posthumously discovered 15,145-page, single-spaced fantasy manuscript called The Story of the Vivian Girls, in What is Known as the Realms of the Unreal, of the Glandeco-Angelinian War Storm, Caused by the Child Slave Rebellion, along with several hundred drawings and watercolor paintings illustrating the story.” Just…wow. -Ed.) [h/t The Blue Hoodie.]

He Never Hit Me. Amit, R., Huffington Post (Oct. 2014). [TRIGGER WARNING: intimate partner abuse.]

Pink Upholstered Vagina Couch. Best of Craigslist (Jan. 2008). [with IMAGES.] [h/t Stacey]

Verizon, AT&T tracking their users with ‘supercookies’. Timberg, C., The Washington Post (Nov. 2014).

A staggering 400 million birds have vanished from Europe since 1980. Mooney, C., The Washington Post (Nov. 2014).

JPMorgan’s foreign exchange trade under investigation by Justice Dept. Agence France-Presse via Raw Story (Nov. 2014). (“raised its estimate of related legal costs by $1.3 billion to $5.9 billion.” My, that sure seems like a lot of money. Incidentally, the bank’s profits were $22 billion in 2013—and that’s after shelling out tens of billions in legal costs. -Ed.]

Hackers Could Decide Who Controls Congress Thanks to Alaska’s Terrible Internet Ballots. Friess, S., The Intercept (Nov. 2014). (“Alaska’s first-in-the-nation internet voting system is a security nightmare that threatens to put control of the U.S. Congress in the hands of hackers.” You know, I’d rather take my chances on the hackers than have control of the U.S. Congress in the hands of America’s Owners and other conservative critters. -Ed.]

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PLZ NOTE: Acquisition of links and/or bon mots for the Palace Library does not imply the Palace’s 100% agreement with or endorsement of any content, organization or individual.

Have a nice day.

palacehappyface

 

Palace Zoo welcomes Black Rain Frog.

amphibiansThe Palace is pleased to announce the addition of a Black Rain Frog (Breviceps fuscus) to the Amphibian collection in our world-renowned zoo. Because OMG FACE!

blackrainfrogPhoto: ©2004 Robert C. Drewes (with kind permission).

This species was brought to our attention via an article in The Dodo entitled Meet the World’s Grumpiest Frog, which contains several closeup portraits of the little critter making a bunch of frowny faces. But it turns out that this frog is not particularly grumpy at all, neither in temperament nor, in our opinion, facial cues. Like many animals do when they’re frightened or under attack, the black rain frog will puff itself up in size in an attempt to ward off its enemies, rendering it actually quite adorable:

blackrainfrog2Photo: Beneke74 via iSpot.

The black rain frog is native to the Southern coasts of Africa, where it hangs out in temperate forests among shrubby vegetation. The species burrows into the forest floor and make tunnels as deep as 6 inches (150 mm) underground. The male stays there to guard developing offspring—hey, that’s a nice trick you have there, female B.fuscus! (These feminist frogs would obviously make terrible Baptists.) Unlike most frog species, black rain froglets grow to maturity without a water-dwelling phase. And the ladyfrogs have another trick: adhesive amplexus. What the hell is “adhesive amplexus,” you ask? Well, during mating season the female secretes from specialized glands on her back a sticky substance that keeps the male from slipping off of her during intercourse. Until she is damn good and ready, and decides she has had enough. Hahaha. Awesome.

Mostly nocturnal ground dwellers well-adapted to living in underground burrows, black rain frogs fill a unique niche in their environment and thus do not compete extensively with other species in the forest ecosystem. They are threatened by habitat loss, although fortunately, not urgently so.

amphibianslbl