As discussed previously, on Fridays, I present my weekly social media roundups. Note that toots of articles generally include header images from the articles, which I don’t include here unless their creators happen to have released them for use under a free license, and I notice. Most have not, or I don’t notice. But I now add my commentary here, where I don’t feel restricted by message length.

diagrams showing the division of the day and of the week

Also, I don’t generally attach pictures to posts with quotations.

9:07 – Mon 04 September 2023

Image Not Shown: Back view of large group of students paying attention on a class at lecture hall

Myths about ‘talent’ disadvantage women in science from Futurity

According to the researchers, male students are more likely to be perceived as brave and curious “artists”—whereas women are perceived as fragile “organizers.”

Hashtags: #Gender #Bias #Education

I have always mildly regretted not actively calling on random students to speak in class, back in the days when I still taught. I organized the tests in such a way that didn’t favor “male-coded” traits—avoiding questions where one might memorize the class of answers, or rely on some flash of insight, for quick examples—and most women generally performed extremely well on them. However, a high grade doesn’t manifest in the classroom, where the other students have the opportunity to see through the stereotypes.

12:03 – Mon 04 September 2023

Quoted on Mastodon

Liberality attended with mild language; learning without pride; valor united with mercy; wealth accompanied by a generous contempt of it—these four qualities are with difficulty acquired.


Hashtags: #Quotes

9:05 – Tue 05 September 2023

Image Not Shown: Pope Francis arrives for his weekly general audience in the Pope Paul VI hall at the Vatican, Wednesday, Aug. 23, 2023

Pope says ‘backward’ U.S. conservatives have replaced faith with ideology from Daily Kos

Many conservatives have blasted Francis’ emphasis instead on social justice issues such as the environment and the poor, while also branding as heretical his opening to letting divorced and civilly remarried Catholics receive the sacraments.

Hashtags: #CatholicChurch #Conservatives

This feels like a good sign, to me. The weak point in the conservative movement has always sat somewhere near the detail that the right-wing largely despises named, organized denominations, because they have consumed endless conspiracy theories about conflicting loyalties; for illustrations, see their fears about JFK’s Catholic upbringing, Obama’s “secret Muslim” background, and even Nancy Reagan’s astrology obsession. They tolerate the alliance, because their goals sometimes coincide, and they like the ability to use Christianity as a shield for their ludicrous philosophies. But this removes the shield and forces Catholics to make a choice between “allies” waiting for an opportunity to sell us out and the (legitimate) values that they claim to espouse.

12:05 – Tue 05 September 2023

Quoted on Mastodon

Whoso associates with the wicked will be accused of following their ways, though their principles may have made no impression upon him; just as if a person were in the habit of frequenting a tavern, he would not be supposed to go there for prayer, but to drink intoxicating liquor.


Hashtags: #Quotes

9:01 – Wed 06 September 2023

Image Not Shown: The Los Angeles skyline and the four-level interchange where the freeways meet in June 2023

What can cities do to correct racism and help all communities live longer? It starts with city planning from The Conversation

Environmental justice stems from a 1980s social movement that protested toxic waste being dumped in predominantly Black neighborhoods in the South.

Hashtags: #Racism #Pollution #CityPlanning #EnvironmentalJustice

In my (figurative) backyard, we have the example that Robert Moses apparently lowered bridges on major roads and reduced parking at our parks for large vehicles, all to decrease the chances of public transit dropping off non-white people. We all hear versions of this, growing up, yet somehow, nobody ever fixes the problem, thus perpetuating over decades.

12:01 – Wed 06 September 2023

Quoted on Mastodon

The boast of heraldry, the pomp of pow’r, / And all that beauty, all that wealth e’er gave, / Await alike the inevitable hour. / The paths of glory lead but to the grave.

Thomas Gray

Hashtags: #Quotes

9:03 – Thu 07 September 2023

Content Warning: Racist Terrorism

Image Not Shown: This video grab shows police cars on the site of a shooting in Jacksonville, Florida, August 26, 2023.

African Americans Remain Top Target of Hate Crimes from Voice of America

Five states — Colorado, New Jersey, Ohio, Texas and Utah — also broke their records for anti-Black hate crimes, while incidents in California and New York state — both with large Black populations — surged by more than 20%, according to the report.

Hashtags: #Racism #HateCrimes


Seriously, I don’t have anything useful to say, here. Can we maybe stop this? Those of you committing hate crimes (assuming that you somehow read my blog) have to realize that you come off like complete losers, here…

12:07 – Thu 07 September 2023

Quoted on Mastodon

A foolish man in wealth and authority is like a weak-timbered house with a too-ponderous roof.

Richard Chamberlain

Hashtags: #Quotes

9:04 – Fri 08 September 2023

Content Warning: US Politics

Image Not Shown: Closeup of the hands of a senior person holding a pill bottle with other pill bottles in the foreground.

Medicare starts a long road to cutting prices for drugs, starting with 10 costing it $50.5 billion annually — a health policy analyst explains why negotiations are promising but will take years from The Conversation

…if it can withstand the ongoing attacks and become settled law, Americans ages 65 and up could see real financial relief down the line.

Hashtags: #Medicare #BigPharma

The gloom and doom aspects of this article highlight, at least to me, the fact that the author fails to mention that it took forever for this policy to make it into the Overton Window. Yes, it’ll take time for the prices to move through the system. Yes, companies will happily waste money fighting this in court if it deprives the government of even one penny that we could use to regulate them. But also, if we had started this process as part of the Affordable Care Act where it belonged, those years and court cases would have already passed.

12:02 – Fri 08 September 2023

Quoted on Mastodon

As some tall cliff that lifts its awful form, / Swells from the vale, and midway leaves the storm,— / Though round its breast the rolling clouds are spread, / Eternal sunshine settles on its head.

Oliver Goldsmith

Hashtags: #Quotes


Because it accidentally became a tradition early on in the life of the blog, I drop any additional articles that didn’t fit into the one-article-per-day week, but too weird or important to not mention, here.

Image Not Shown: Calculator on white background with copy space

Lower wages come back to bite prestige brands from Futurity

The studies show that vertically differentiated firms leverage the perception of “high-quality” to pay their employees less. Conversely, horizontally differentiated firms pursue jobseekers that reflect the distinctiveness of the brand and, for them, are willing to pay more.

I’ve always had this sense in the software industry, where students (up until recently) actively dreamed of “landing a job” with one of the Big Four software companies (Alphabet/Google, Amazon, Apple, and Meta/Facebook), despite the fact that you get a job there by…applying and interviewing, pretty much like anywhere else. And as a result, those companies treat many of those employees terribly.

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Credits: Header image is Circular diagrams showing the division of the day and of the week from a manuscript drafted during the Carolingian Dynasty.