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More cool pics from the Co.Space benefit dinner

New Leaf Cospace 2012 Benefit Dinner Album New photos by Chantal Plank

Greenmore Gardens honcho - sat at my table, and mentioned growing the greens for the salad. One of the speakers as well.

New Leaf honchos Spud and Eric.

EcoVent honcho Erin

The three main New Leaf guys, Spud, Eric, Christian.

The telesmatic house model. A symbol of community ownership of the project.


So funny to see those rich guys and corporations buying secretive attack ads on the local tv

Oh LUCKY LUCKY Pennsylvania!

We get to have a bunch of rich out-of-state mutherfrackers buy ads on the local stations and tell us what to think and who to vote for - surprise surprise, it's vote for the RICH GUYS!

Let the rich out-of-state guys with their secret money superpacs and their advertisements tell us what to do - yeah, thats the ticket, i'll jump right on that.

Karl Rove, Koch Brothers, Australian Billionaire Rupert Murdoch and creepy Roger Ailes - you think you can buy this election, and who knows, maybe you can.

Funny thing - I personally do not like Obama. I know, I'm not supposed to say that, but I don't care for him. I knew we were in for a corporate presidency when he selected Tim Geithner for Secretary of the Treasury. Talk about putting the fox in charge of the henhouse!

But when I see these secretive Rovian and Koch-Murdochian attack ads with all their dirty Citizens United money, well, I'm tempted to vote for Obama just to say, "Frak you Karl Rove". 

Photos from the New Leaf Co Space benefit dinner...

I just be grabbing the links from a flickr feed... photog got it set to no perms, so, you gotta click to see. Maybe later I got some photos I can embed. (Note photog gave me permission to paste from her facebook, so pasted pics added.

I was there, nice piece of work. I liked the space, got to remember it, be great for fancy events - especially if I can get some design-minded folk like teh new leaf crew to decorate, they did it up proper - General Potter Farm.

Photos by Sarah Hanson 

Here's the link to the flickr set, click this for an easy way to view them all:

New Leaf Dinner Photos - Flickr by Sarah Hanson

And here's a few sample photos...


Read more »

Pretty good metaprimer on the rhetoric of debunking climate change myths

I'm constantly interested in rhetoric, the language of persuasion. This pdf had a lot of good but demanding points about how to get people espousing factually untrue climate denial myths to become able to actually look at the science.

Hint - it aint easy.

"Once people receive misinformation, it’s quite difficult to remove its influence. This was demonstrated in a 1994 experiment where people were exposed to misinformation about a fictitious warehouse fire, then given a correction clarifying the parts of the story that were incorrect.3 Despite remembering and accepting the correction, people still showed a lingering effect, referring to the misinformation when answering questions about the story.

Is it possible to completely eliminate the influence of misinformation? The evidence indicates that no matter how vigorously and repeatedly we correct the misinformation, for example by repeating the correction over and over again, the influence remains detectable.4 The old saying got it right - mud sticks.

There is also an added complication. Not only is misinformation difficult to remove, debunking a myth can actually strengthen it in people’s minds. Several different “backfire effects” have been observed, arising from making myths more familiar, from providing too many arguments, or from providing evidence that threatens one’s worldview. 

The last thing you want to do when debunking misinformation is blunder in and make matters worse. So this handbook has a specific focus - providing practical tips to effectively debunk misinformation and avoid the various backfire effects. " Read more »

Atrios names Tom Friedman "The One True Wanker of the Decade" - to resounding applause

Really, this award could not have gone to a more deserving wanker.

Friedman possesses all of the qualities that make a pundit truly wankerific. He fetishizes a false "centrism" which is basically whatever Tom Friedman likes, imagining the Friedman agenda is both incredibly popular in the country and lacking any support from our current politicians, when in fact the opposite is usually true. Washington worships at the altar of the agenda of false centrism, and people often hate it. Problems abroad, even ones which really have nothing to do with us, should be solved by war, and problems at home should be solved by increasing the suffering of poor and middle class people. Even though one political party is pretty much implementing, or trying to implement, 99.999999% of the Friedman agenda, what we really need is a third party catering precisely to this silent majority of Friedmanites.

Truly great wankers possess a kind of glib narcissism, the belief that everything is about them while simultaneously disavowing any responsibility for anything.

The Co Space project from New Leaf Initiative seems like a cool idea

When I was younger, and an even more radical (and hopeless lol) activist type, I was really into ideas of intentional community projects. One of the things I was involved with was a series of houses here in State College, houses that were rented and filled with activist/artist/philosopher types, which were meant to be incubators of activism and art and action and the like.

For what they were, they worked okay. They never lasted all that long, but some interesting stuff happened.

I gather this is basically the idea behind The Co Space,
which is the New Leaf Initiative's new project.

Basically, houses in which students interested in sustainability live with mentors with experience in sustainability. Sustainability-living student housing. Shared houses. Incubators for sustainability action and art and entreprenuership.

Sounds cool.

Here's The Co Space Welcome pdf - it's too big, but pretty. (I am forcing it to load in an iframe below, it will load in the background, so when you do click the link above it will appear nicely fast. Well, faster than it otherwise would, lol.)

The New Leaf's Co Space website is one of those designs that makes a web guy like me cringe - all pretty, almost no function, no links out, all flash and css so effectively invisible to search spiders. A graphic students wet dream, a web businesses bad dream. Oh well. Enjoy the pretty, because it is pretty.


A doctor asks other doctors NOT to comply with political pressure to perform unnecessary transvaginal ultrasounds

What do you know - a doctor who isn't afraid. Why are the doctors being so meek and silent? Do you know? What is going on in the minds of our healers?

Where Is The Physician Outrage?

... it’s our hands that will supposedly be used to insert medical equipment (tools of HEALING, for the sake of all that is good and holy) into the vaginas of coerced women.

Fellow physicians, once again we are being used as tools to screw people over. This time, it’s the politicians who want to use us to implement their morally reprehensible legislation. They want to use our ultrasound machines to invade women’s bodies, and they want our hands to be at the controls. Coerced and invaded women, you have a problem with that? Blame us evil doctors. We are such deliciously silent scapegoats.

It is our responsibility, as always, to protect our patients from things that would harm them. Therefore, as physicians, it is our duty to refuse to perform a medical procedure that is not medically indicated. Any medical procedure. Whatever the pseudo-justification.

It’s time for a little old-fashioned civil disobedience.

Here are a few steps we can take as physicians to protect our patients from legislation such as this.

1) Just don’t comply. No matter how much our autonomy as physicians has been eroded, we still have control of what our hands do and do not do with a transvaginal ultrasound wand. If this legislation is completely ignored by the people who are supposed to implement it, it will soon be worth less than the paper it is written on. Read more »

New Umair Haque - love this guy's ideas - on leadership this time

I've written before about Umair Haque - one of teh modern independent progressive thinkers, brilliant guy I think. he's got a new piece...

Worth a read, if you are independent progressive, or interested in leadership.

The Builders' Manifesto

Here's the problem in a nutshell. What leaders "lead" are yesterday's organizations. But yesterday's organizations — from carmakers, to investment banks, to the healthcare system, to the energy industry, to the Senate itself — are broken. Today's biggest human challenge isn't leading broken organizations slightly better. It's building better organizations in the first place. It isn't about leadership: it's about "buildership", or what I often refer to as Constructivism.

Leadership is the art of becoming, well, a leader. Constructivism, in contrast, is the art of becoming a builder — of new institutions. Like artistic Constructivism rejected "art for art's sake," so economic Constructivism rejects leadership for the organization's sake — instead of for society's.

Builders forge better building blocks to construct economies, polities, and societies. They're the true prime movers, the fundamental causes of prosperity. They build the institutions that create new kinds of leaders — as well as managers, workers, and customers.

Who's a Builder — and who's just a leader? Here are some Builders contrasted with mere leaders: Read more »

Jupiter and Venus are putting on a nice show

Well, it's a nice show if you like that kind of thing - you cant miss it really, in the southwest to west, from sundown to about 10 or later. Venus is a little higher in the sky, to the westward, and blazing bright - so bright it makes jupiter, also bright, seem  much duller by comparison, altho they still both blaze out as planets, much brighter than any nearby stars, shining thru haze and almost certainly thru town lights.

Oh - and check this - at the same time, Mars is in the east to southeast, high up in the sky, a clearly reddish point of light brighter than any nearer stars. So the three planets closest to us, are all visible in the night sky at the same time.

That's not something you can see every night. Take a minute, go outside, look up - it's cool.

Jonathan Haidt, political strategic genius, talking with Bill Moyers

I love Haidt, and his model of moral universes and the moral differences between the liberal brain and the conservative brain - if there is going to be a path that does not lead to the equivalent of civil war, I suspect it will be Haidt's models which will show us the way...


from the transcript...

: Let me get some clarity on one of your basic foundations here. Your research in the book, you and your associates, organizes morality into six moral foundations or concerns. Sketch them briefly and tell me how liberals and conservatives differ on each of them.

JONATHAN HAIDT: Sure. So, if you imagine each of our righteous minds as being, like an audio equalizer with six slider switches, and the first one is care, compassion, those sorts of issues, liberals have it turned up to 11. And we have this on a lot of different surveys. Liberals really feel. When they see an animal being mistreated, they're more likely to feel something than conservatives, and especially than libertarians, who are very, very low on this one.

JONATHAN HAIDT: The next two, liberty and fairness, when liberty and fairness conflict with care, are you going to punish someone, or are you going to be compassionate? Liberals are more likely to go with care. Read more »

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