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if the men find out we can shapeshift, they're going to tell the church


Thanks for nothing

Day 303: it's turkey time, and Republicans are putting tax and spending cuts on the table, which many are finding an unpalatable centrepiece. CBO estimates suggest that poor Americans' gooses in particular will be cooked if the bill passes, with households earning under $50,000 increasingly worse off. Republican senators have stated, on the record, that major donors will not be inviting them back for a second helping of support if the tax cut bill fails. The House bill has been served but the Senate bill is still in the oven, and preparing it will involve two opposed groups coming together with a shared purpose, and also some way of massaging the figures so they won't increase the deficit. [This is a catch-all US politics thread; Roy Moore talk goes here]
posted by Merus to MetaFilter on Nov 19 at 8:35 AM
91 users marked this as a favorite

Worlds of words to escape to

Yesterday, I read the gorgeous, perfect, sweet all-ages comic "The Tea Dragon Society" and fell in love. And then realized how badly I need to disappear into a really good book or 10. Recommendations? I'm looking for some fantasy, historical fiction, regular fiction, or sci-fi novels to read for the purposes of escapism. I'm open to webcomics, too, and podcasts/audiobooks, and kid's books, and movies. Anything where I can really sink into another world and lose myself.
posted by cnidaria to Ask MetaFilter on Nov 15 at 6:00 PM
79 users marked this as a favorite

Timbuktu's learned history and legacy

Timbuktu has long been Africa's El Dorado. Located on the southern edge of the Sahara and north of the Niger river (Google maps), what was initially a small river-side settlement bloomed as a trading hub for salt, gold, slaves, ivory and later, books. While its academic prominence has never returned to its peak of centuries past, it is still a treasure trove of ancient manuscripts from western Africa, maintained and protected through the years by families who have kept these works safe from numerous regime changes. These are the lost (and found) libraries of Timbuktu (hour long documentary on Vimeo from documentary producer; more info from BBC Four and stream if you're in the UK).
posted by filthy light thief to MetaFilter on Nov 16 at 9:36 AM
74 users marked this as a favorite

The Myth of the Male Bumbler

Male bumblers are an epidemic. A nice explanation to provide to those who confess to be worried that they can't tell the difference between sexual assault and asking someone out on a date.
posted by janey47 to MetaFilter on Nov 15 at 11:17 AM
73 users marked this as a favorite

Controlled chaos

215 gunshot victims, arriving four to a car, in one night, in one ER. A Nevada emergency doc tells how he managed the ER on the night of the worst mass shooting in US history. (Warning: contains descriptions of injured people and trauma medicine).
posted by stillmoving to MetaFilter on Nov 13 at 11:17 AM
66 users marked this as a favorite

DnDish: simplifying D&D (you know, for kids)

Kevin Makice (@kmakice) is a geek dad who tried to get his boys into Dungeons and Dragons with a 4th Edition starter kit, but they lost interest due to all the nuanced rules, but they liked their dad's painted miniatures. So he set about simplifying D&D and made a pared down version of the game he loved in a 3 page PDF: DnDish. The game worked for his 7-12 year olds, with the kids making their own campaigns.
posted by filthy light thief to MetaFilter on Nov 17 at 10:08 AM
65 users marked this as a favorite

Why Do So Many Incompetent Men Become Leaders?

There are three popular explanations for the clear under-representation of women in management, namely: (1) they are not capable; (2) they are not interested; (3) they are both interested and capable but unable to break the glass-ceiling: an invisible career barrier, based on prejudiced stereotypes, that prevents women from accessing the ranks of power. Conservatives and chauvinists tend to endorse the first; liberals and feminists prefer the third; and those somewhere in the middle are usually drawn to the second. But what if they all missed the big picture? ... In my view, the main reason for the uneven management sex ratio is our inability to discern between confidence and competence.
posted by Bella Donna to MetaFilter on Nov 14 at 10:22 AM
64 users marked this as a favorite

There's only one rule that I know of, babies

The Washington Post asked readers to submit stories of a time a stranger performed an act so unexpectedly kind that it stayed with them. Here are some of the most poignant ones, in honor of World Kindness Day. (yesterday at this point, but every day is immeasurably improved by kindness)
posted by Johnny Wallflower to MetaFilter on Nov 13 at 10:35 PM
62 users marked this as a favorite

If I pretend I'm bad at this, will you do it for me?

Male Incompentence is a Subtle Form of Misogyny talks about the larger picture of many men's refusals to perform emotional labor in the frame of gender politics.
posted by bile and syntax to MetaFilter on Nov 15 at 7:30 AM
60 users marked this as a favorite

Can you re-mineralize/grow/repair your tooth enamel?

Googling this seems to provide conflicting answers. Would like fellow mefites' thoughts on my question. If you believe you can grow/repair/remineralize tooth enamel, links or product names would be appreciated.
posted by luvmywife to Ask MetaFilter on Nov 16 at 2:36 PM
58 users marked this as a favorite

Stripping The Copper Out Of The Economy

“Billions of dollars of this debt comes due in the next few years. “If today is considered a retail apocalypse,” Bloomberg reported, “then what’s coming next could truly be scary.” Eight million American retail workers could see their careers evaporate, not due to technological disruption but a predatory financial scheme. The masters of the universe who devised it, meanwhile, will likely walk away enriched, and policymakers must reckon with how they enabled the carnage.“ - The Cause and Consequences of the Retail Apocalypse - David Dayden for The New Republic.
posted by The Whelk to MetaFilter on Nov 15 at 11:32 AM
56 users marked this as a favorite

Keeping good habits

I'm struggling with keeping a few good habits that are essential for my life. No snowflakes here, just the regular stuff: exercising, eating well, meditating, limiting alcohol and caffeine.
posted by Anonymous to Ask MetaFilter on Nov 15 at 12:53 AM
54 users marked this as a favorite

Are there British podcasts I'm missing out on?

I love podcasts. But I feel like I'm missing out on a wealth of British ones. Do you have any favorite UK podcasts or radio shows?
posted by actionpact to Ask MetaFilter on Nov 14 at 11:10 AM
52 users marked this as a favorite

Desprit to pass spring projict

The Shadow Scholar: The man who writes your students' papers tells his story. Two days had passed since I last heard from the business student. Overnight I had received 14 e-mails from her. She had additional instructions for the assignment, such as "but more again please make sure they are a good link betwee the leticture review and all the chapter and the benfet of my paper. finally do you think the level of this work? how match i can get it?"
posted by ErisLordFreedom to MetaFilter on Nov 14 at 1:27 PM
52 users marked this as a favorite

Stuff This: Stocking Stuffer Suggestions

My family and I usually each buy some stocking stuffers for each other. Any recommendations?
posted by kat518 to Ask MetaFilter on Nov 17 at 6:26 AM
51 users marked this as a favorite

The Boys in the Picture

In July, 1990, photographer Peter Widing snapped a perfect shot of three young football (soccer) players. In 2006, his friend and colleague Christian Daun first saw and became obsessed with the photograph, half-joking with Widing about tracking the three unnamed boys down. In May, 2016, Widing took his own life, shattering Daun's understanding of things and sending him down the journey they'd never taken. By July, 2017, he'd found the boys, now grown men, and learned about where their own lives had led.
posted by Navelgazer to MetaFilter on Nov 13 at 1:42 PM
49 users marked this as a favorite

"And all the Victoria Sponge that comes with it!"

Black Girl in a Big Dress is an online comedy series "about an African American Anglophile cosplayer in love with the Victorian Era who's trying to bring a fantasy courtship from her re-enactment events into the real world."
posted by jedicus to MetaFilter on Nov 17 at 9:52 AM
49 users marked this as a favorite

How well do matchboxes learn?

Machine Learning Explained. In this essay Rodney Brooks, one of the founders of iRobot and emeritus professor at MIT, explains machine learning in layman's terms. He uses a real-life example of one of the first machine learning algorithms, a tic-tac-toe program implemented in the 1950s using matchboxes(!). The essay gives you an appreciation of how machine learning is different from human learning, and what its limitations are -- nice, given the hype surrounding AI today.
posted by storybored to MetaFilter on Nov 18 at 12:47 PM
46 users marked this as a favorite

MetaFilter is moving to https as a default

A week from now, we'll be updating MetaFilter to always serve https pages instead of http! You most likely don't need to care at all that this is happening, but I'll explain what it means below. Come on in!
posted by cortex to MetaTalk on Nov 16 at 12:58 PM
45 users marked this as a favorite

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National Treasure Alexandra Petri spoke at my campus today! She was just as brilliant and hilarious as you'd expect, and in Q&A I asked if she was aware that on this website called Metafilter she is officially known as National Treasure Alexandra Petri. She said "Oh no, I never know if people on the internet are being sarcastic or nice,... [more]
posted by hoist with his own pet aardvark to MetaFilter on Nov 15 at 11:18 PM
189 users marked this as a favorite

I'm a hired gun, a doctor of everything, an academic mercenary. My customers are your students. I promise you that. Somebody in your classroom uses a service that you can't detect, that you can't defend against, that you may not even know exists. oh, we know it exists. and we can usually tell when it's being used, because while... [more]
posted by halation to MetaFilter on Nov 14 at 1:38 PM
165 users marked this as a favorite

She's under-socialized, untrained, and under-exercised, maybe gets walked once a week. First of all, where does this dog toilet if she is not being walked? what the fuck. This dog needs to be rehomed with responsible owners, but your desire not to be physically attacked by an unsafely homed animal is totally fucking normal and valid... [more]
posted by poffin boffin to Ask MetaFilter on Nov 16 at 1:54 PM
141 users marked this as a favorite

From @JYSexton on Twitter: The biggest topic on the Right is how to get a child molester elected so a perjured Attorney General can resign and his replacement can fire a special prosecutor who’s discovering the president’s treason. [view]
posted by DirtyOldTown to MetaFilter on Nov 14 at 12:32 PM
135 users marked this as a favorite

My 11-year-old daughter and I just drove 1 & 1/2 hours each way so she could ask Jody Hice (our Congressman, sadly) why he finally decided to withdraw his support for Roy Moore. He told her that he found the allegations "of what Moore did 40 years ago troubling," and felt better just letting the people of Alabama work it out for... [more]
posted by staggering termagant to MetaFilter on Nov 17 at 10:01 AM
134 users marked this as a favorite

This "but her standards are just higher" thing comes up every single time this topic arises. Here we go yet again: Two mice are inside a Skinner box. For one mouse, they must press the lever precisely 5 times in 3.5 seconds. Any deviation results in a shock. The other mouse gets a reward every time it even glances at the lever,... [more]
posted by soren_lorensen to MetaFilter on Nov 15 at 8:26 AM
131 users marked this as a favorite

[Remember the old saying, folks: fewer jokes about ichor keeps the thread loading quicker.] [view]
posted by cortex to MetaFilter on Nov 13 at 1:47 PM
128 users marked this as a favorite

Julia Ioffe (who wrote the Atlantic story): "We've now updated the story with @ByronTau's great catch: @realDonaldTrump tweeted about the release of Podesta's emails *15 minutes* after @Wikileaks wrote to @DonaldJTrumpJr about it." [view]
posted by scarylarry to MetaFilter on Nov 13 at 2:20 PM
127 users marked this as a favorite

Okay, yes, times are bad. Times have been bad in this country before. We're coming off of a long post WWII period of relative-sorta-kinda things being okay, but that doesn't mean things were always okay. How did people achieve social change before? My short answer would be "organize as much as possible and wait for your historical... [more]
posted by Frowner to MetaFilter on Nov 17 at 12:03 PM
125 users marked this as a favorite

This is more or less how I got a unanimous vote on my local school board -- including 3 Republicans and 2 black-church Democrats (and two white Democrats, incl me; I was a progressive Democrat and the other was a union Democrat) -- to give trans students rights to use the name and bathroom they chose and to be protected from bullying and harassment.... [more]
posted by Eyebrows McGee to MetaFilter on Nov 13 at 7:00 PM
118 users marked this as a favorite

I'm 34, I'm a practicing lawyer 8 years out of law school (yea, I went straight through) and have never tried a real case in federal court. I do administrative and regulatory stuff. The idea that I'd be nominated for lifetime appointment as an article III judge is fucking insane, and I'm legitimately more qualified than Talley. [view]
posted by T.D. Strange to MetaFilter on Nov 13 at 4:23 PM
117 users marked this as a favorite

With Kate Harding on Al Franken: I sympathize with her position although I do not agree. If you really do believe that we can win without lots of chaos and massive realignment - as long as all the Democrats hang together - it's a reasonable argument, and I think people are reading her pretty harshly. I think I would put her argument: "If we... [more]
posted by Frowner to MetaFilter on Nov 16 at 6:25 PM
117 users marked this as a favorite

From Bill O'Neill's sexual history post: "It ranged from a gorgeous personal secretary to Senator Bob Taft (Senior) who was my first true love..." I feel that sentence needs better punctuation. [view]
posted by rocket88 to MetaFilter on Nov 17 at 12:55 PM
116 users marked this as a favorite

[Comment removed. Do not fucking start down some "yeah well his accuser is no angel" path in here, what the fuck.] [view]
posted by cortex to MetaFilter on Nov 16 at 9:50 AM
114 users marked this as a favorite

The graduate students in my department are terrified of this tax bill. It's not exaggerating to say that it could destroy us financially and wreck the careers we've worked so hard for. We're at a loss for what to do; walkouts are planned, but it's not like "graduate students" are a huge constituency. The House Just Voted to Bankrupt... [more]
posted by Kutsuwamushi to MetaFilter on Nov 19 at 12:25 PM
113 users marked this as a favorite

"One might say that the proper thing to do is to only run women, but what is to stop them from being accused too?" In case you want to know what this will look like in the hands of the unscrupulous, when I was on my local school board, I was routinely accused of giving blow jobs to local reporters for favorable coverage. After... [more]
posted by Eyebrows McGee to MetaFilter on Nov 16 at 12:39 PM
111 users marked this as a favorite

First of all: I believe these women. But what is the desired outcome here? He can't be removed from office. He can't be fired from his production company or have his movie shelved. Is there a possibility of criminal charges being brought against him? What do the accusers want? Unless Caitlin Flanagan has spoken with the accusers and one or... [more]
posted by witchen to MetaFilter on Nov 14 at 7:51 AM
109 users marked this as a favorite

eventually, the tax bill's going to come due and the truth will not be hidden from the gop's supporters - they will be outraged and their wrath will be truly scary to behold the republicans are playing with fire and don't realize it yet As long as minorities and an intellectual class exist, the GOP base will not blame the party for... [more]
posted by Rust Moranis to MetaFilter on Nov 19 at 9:06 AM
109 users marked this as a favorite

I will probably have my woman card revoked for my opinion, but here goes. Although I think Franken should resign, I am not convinced that he should do so immediately. I think he owes it to his voters to take their pulse and find out what they want. They voted for him and have been counting on him to represent their interests, particularly in these... [more]
posted by madamjujujive to MetaFilter on Nov 16 at 1:30 PM
108 users marked this as a favorite

Re: Franken, I'd like to call attention to a thought-provoking exchange toward the end of the last thread. bongo_x: Christ. Someone has now posted this video of Tweeden sneaking up behind and rubbing and grabbing a guy on stage at a USO show. ctmf: Is the whole country seven years old? "Oh yeah well look what SHE did"?... [more]
posted by tonycpsu to MetaFilter on Nov 19 at 10:09 AM
108 users marked this as a favorite