27 January 2013

The Nightstand (January 20th)

Aaron Swartz and internet freedom

How the legal system failed Aaron Swartz-and us (Tim Wu, The New Yorker)

The Death of Aaron Swartz (Clive Crook, The Atlantic)

Aaron Swartz's illusion over research (John Gapper, Financial Times)-- A useful counterpoint to some of the other discussions going on.  I'm not sure I am convinced by the final conclusion, but agreed that "liberating" scholarly articles from JSTOR et al. would not suddenly create a utopia of cheap information.  I can see a system emerging something like what exists (as of only recently) with judicial decisions.  They are available for free using Google Scholar; however, Westlaw and Lexis give them to you with lots of bells and whistles (hyperlinking to other cases, checking the validity and subsequent history, etc.)

Invasion of the data snatchers (Bill Keller, NYT)

The death of Aaron Swartz (Peter Singer and Agata Sagan, NYRB)

Carmen Ortiz and Stephen Heymann: accountability for prosecutorial abuse (Glenn Greenwald, The Guardian)


Who Has Abortions and Why It Matters (Jamelle Bouie, The American Prospect)

POW! CRACK! What we know about video games and violence (Suzy Khimm, Wonkblog)

The most depressing graphic for members of Congress (Ezra Klein, Wonkblog)-- If they hate it so much, why don't they change it?

Gun research is allowed again.  So what will we find out? (Brad Plumer, Wonkblog)

Programmed for primetime (Bhaskar Sunkara, In These Times)-- It should be clear that I like Ezra Klein, since at least one item from Wonkblog shows up in every edition of The Nightstand.  However, I think there is something to the critique of an abandonment of pure progressivism in pursuit of technocratic respectability. Of course, there is the difference in venue and audience to contend with as well.

The case for socialist organization (Shaun Harkin, Socialist Worker)

After 'the end of big government liberalism' (Ezra Klein, Wonkblog)

Who Says You Can Kill Americans, Mr. President? (Vicki Divoll, NYT)

Southern Discomfort (George Packer, The New Yorker)-- Goes well with Garry Wills piece on the South from the January 27th edition.

Twelve Questions for John Brennan (David Cole, NYRB)

Enlightened surveillance? (Stuart Armstrong, Practical Ethics)


The delights of disgust  (Justin E.H. Smith, Chronicle of Higher Education)

Us and them (Marek Kohn, Aeon)


All is Well in Zion (Mark Brown, By Common Consent)

Roles, responsibilities and rights: what was Elaine Dalton talking about? (rah, FMH)-- What indeed? (See also Dear President Dalton (winterbuzz, FMH)

'Help Meet' or Their Own Agent (Brent Beal, FMH)

Manti Te'o and the Imaginary Mormon Girlfriend (John Turner, Religion in American History)

Should Women Pray in Public? (Julie M. Smith, Times & Seasons)

20 January 2013

The Nightstand (January 13)


Major Companies Push the Limit of a Tax Break (David Kocieniewski, NYT)

How the world manages to waste half its food (Brad Plumer, Wonkblog)


Organizing the Doctrine and Covenants Lessons: Or, Why the Topical Approach Doesn't Work (Ben Park, By Common Consent)

Questioning Mormonism (David Bokovoy, Worlds Without End)

Pride: How the motivation for most sins has (thus far) kept me from apostasy (John C., By Common Consent)

The Pedagogy of Sunday School (Norbert, By Common Consent)


A Standardized Testing Revolt (Abby Rapaport, The American Prospect)

The Question Torture Apologists Can't Answer (Paul Waldman, The American Prospect)


Media Violence versus Real Violence (Paul Waldman, The American Prospect)-- I should also put a special plug in here for David Waldman's Twitter feed (not sure if they are brothers, but there appears to be some resemblence).  David (as KagroX) has been documenting accidental gun deaths on a daily basis.  The pace is truly staggering.

13 January 2013

The Nightstand (Jan 6, 2013)


The Strangest Conservative Priority: Prepping a '2nd Amendment Solution' (Conor Friedersdorf, The Atlantic)

America's Real Criminal Element: Lead (Kevin Drum, Mother Jones)

In Texas, Resistance to a Renewed Call for an Annual Roundup of Legislators (Manny Fernandez, NYT)-- This was one of the more seriously weird things we ran into when we moved to Texas-- the legislature meets only once every two years.  Its a huge state, with lots of problems, and a complex regional economy(ies), and is seriously "undergoverned."  But restricting meetings of the legislature is putting Texas' ridiculous commitment to conservatism into action.

Secrets and Lies of the Bailout (Matt Taibbi, Rolling Stone)

Guns and Drugs (Michelle Chen, In These Times)

The 'war on terror' - by design - can never end (Glenn Greenwald, The Guardian)

The Disappeared (Frank Dikotter, Foreign Policy)

Getting a better education and paying for it (Andres Pinter, WaPo)

Better, if not Cheaper, Care (Ezekiel Emanuel, NYT)

The big issues in macroeconomics: the fiscal multiplier (John Quiggin, Crooked Timber)

Religion and Mormonism

Tolkien: On Fairy Stories (Ronan James Head, By Common Consent)

A Church without Words (Heidi Harris, Peculiar People)

Purity Culture is Rape Culture (E.J. Graff, The American Prospect)-- There are some implications for LDS here IMO, but I am too timid to really sort them out.

One Miracle at a Time (Kevin Barney, Feminist Mormon Housewives)

The Mormon Guy's Career Guide to Mansplaining (Scott H, Feminist Mormon Housewives)

Issues in Mormon Feminism (Taylor Petrey, Peculiar People)

01 January 2013

The Nightstand (Dec 23rd)

LDS Women Wear Pants

To get the full scope of events related to "Wear Pants to Church" Sunday, you would have to access certain Facebook pages (some of which are no longer available).  In lieu of that, I have made a digest of several blog posts that represent distinct stages or aspects of the movement (or the reaction to it).

A decent intro into the movement and its purposes-- Mormon Feminists in Whoville and Why You Should Wear Pants to Church this Sunday (Sandra Ford, FMH)

A response to the disgusting backlash-- On Nastiness: Why Nice Mormons Can Be So Very Very Mean (About Pants) (fmhLisa, FMH)

If you acknowledge the inequality of men and women in the LDS Church and are OK with it, then go ahead.  But don't piss on my leg and tell me its raining...-- Mormon Male Privilege and How to Make Apparent Gender Disparity in the Church (Whoa-man, Exponent II)

A further refinement of the purposes and rationale behind the movement-- Feminism 101: Why Pants Matter- A Brief Primer on Social Norms (rah, FMH)

Personal preparation for confronting opposition-- Finding Your Inner Pants- Empowerment Through Self-Understanding and the Language of Authority (Anne Peffer, FMH)

A somewhat dissenting take (Welch, always the reluctant contrarian/hand-wringer...)-- Twelve hundred words on pants (Rosalynde Welch, Times & Seasons)

And another-- Pants, Doctrine and Culture, and Why Maybe We Shouldn't Worry (Rachael, Peculiar People)

Satirical response to the aftermath-- Mormonism is a Skirt, Not a Pair of Pants (Matthew Nokleby, FMH)

A response from abroad-- Less Than 1200 Words on Pants (RJH, By Common Consent)

A more biting response to the backlash-- How to Silence a(n LDS) Woman: You're Doing it Wrong (Jacob, By Common Consent)

The movement makes it into the NYT-- Mormon Women Set Out to Take a Stand, in Pants (Timothy Pratt, NYT)

A post-mortem-- What Was Pants to Church Sunday Really About? (Joanna Brooks, Religion Dispatches)

Plans for the future-- Post Pants: Mormon Feminism and inter-group cooperation (Reese Dixon, FMH)

Newtown and Guns

The Last Shot (Emily Bazelon, Slate)

This sacred text explains why the US can't kick the gun habit (Jonathan Freedland, The Guardian)

What Drives Suicidal Mass Killers? (Adam Lankford, NYT)

Video Games are Not the Problem (Andrew Sullivan, The Daily Dish)-- See the chart at the linked article.  Also worth noting the common-sense notion that we so far have no recorded slaying of upwards of 20 people by a teenager or young adult using an Xbox to bludgeon people to death.  See also Still No Strong Links between Video Games and Violence (Jamelle Bouie, The American Prospect)

We Have the Technology to Make Safer Guns (Farhad Manjoo, Slate)

The Freedom of an Armed Society (Firmin Debrabander, NYT)

A quick rejoinder to fool Huckabee (RJH, By Common Consent)

Our Moloch (Garry Wills, NYRB)

Thinking the Unthinkable (The Anarchist Soccer Mom)

We Have Seen the Enemy and the Enemy is Us (gomw, The Mormon Worker)

Taking the Broad View on Guns (Paul Waldman, The American Prospect)

War at Home (Bob Herbert, The American Prospect)

'Politicizing' and the Rhetoric of Reaction (Ben Alpers, US Intellectual History Blog)


Can Books Cause Problems? Reflections on Brigham Young: Pioneer Prophet (Dave Banack, Times & Seasons)

Malignant Mormon Memes- If This is Not Your Castle, You are Not My Prince (fmhLisa, FMH)-- The beginning of a potentially great series at FMH...


For Poor, Leap to College Often Ends in a Hard Fall (Jason DeParle, NYT)

Who Can Still Afford State U? (Scott Thurm, Wall Street Journal)

Erik Loomis and Free Speech (Ben Alpers, USIH Blog)


One Nation Under God? (Molly Worthen, NYT)

Apocalypse Always (Emily Suzanne Clark, Religion in American History Blog)


Influential GOP group releases, pulls shockingly sensible copyright memo (Timothy Lee, Ars Technica)

Everyone is a Taker (Jamelle Bouie, The American Prospect)

Catastrophiliacs (Sasha Lilley, In These Times)

Gerrymandering Isn't the (Only) Problem (Rob Richie, In These Times)

The Will to Secede (G. Pascal Zachary, In These Times)


All the World's a Game, and Business is a Player (Nick Wingfield, NYT)

The Bribery Aisle: How Wal-Mart Got Its Way in Mexico (David Barstow, NYT)