David Thompson
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May 18, 2021

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Liz

Except, of course, when exalted as a great accomplishment.

Clown World art.

David

Clown World art.

Ah, but Ms Newsome, our fearless and radical artist, is “exploring issues of Black authorship, appropriation, identity and belonging,” and “creating expressive linguistic symphonies.” Of surly teeth-sucking. You see, “It’s an expression of the anger and pain that many Black people often experience living in Canada.”

That white devil Babylon.

JuliaM

’… the critics assert that “the contents of this paper are likely to cause unjustifiable harm to people in bigger bodies.”’

Well, don’t worry too much, critics, I’m sure diabetes, hypotension and heart disease will beat hurty words to the punch.

MC

Curiously, the terms “black microaggressions” and “microaggressions by black people” yield few pertinent Google result

Presumably this is because blacks focus more on macroaggressions eg murder, rape, assault, robbery, home invasion, looting etc, where the incidence of black on white aggression is vastly greater than the other way round.

kfg

". . .the terms “black microaggressions” and “microaggressions by black people” yield few pertinent Google results . . .

This is impossible by academic definition, so bringing it up is itself a microaggression and just more evidence of systemic racism and white supremacy.

Hey, I'm just the messenger.

David

Meanwhile, in the woke utopia of Portland.

John Lewis

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-9588595/The-FA-not-punish-fans-players-clubs-display-Israel-Palestine-flags-final-games.html

https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/football/43350447

Compare and contrast.

pst314

… the critics assert that “the contents of this paper are likely to cause unjustifiable harm to people in bigger bodies.”’

As best I recall, only a few of the Mensa members I've met were obese (it was their egos that were morbidly obese) but I have refused to attend Mensa events so my sample size may be unrepresentative.

pst314

Presumably this is because blacks focus more on macroaggressions eg murder, rape, assault, robbery, home invasion...

I denounce you for calling attention to counterrevolutionary facts.

But seriously, in my experience blacks are far more likely to utter racial slurs--and at the drop of a hat.

WTP

Portland residents say they now try to avoid going downtown in their own city

It's been a year...actually more...perhaps someone needs to tell them?

As for knife wielding man, we don't really know the full context. Maybe the "victim" microaggressed against keeping Portland weird.

anon a mouse

"the contents of this paper are likely to cause unjustifiable harm to people in bigger bodies"

Ah, that's not a crunchwrap, dearie.

Burnsie

Noah Carl on the undiscussable.

Low IQ and conservatism sure seems to be "discussable."

https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/millennial-media/201304/do-racism-conservatism-and-low-iq-go-hand-in-hand

https://www.ibtimes.com/people-low-iq-tend-be-socially-conservative-new-study-401470

https://www.livescience.com/18132-intelligence-social-conservatism-racism.html

...and on and on and on.

I feel unjustifiably harmed. Where's the manager?

pst314

I feel unjustifiably harmed. Where's the manager?

According to current leftist precedents you are entitled to skip meetings with management and go directly to direct action. ;-)

Adam

"...some kind of veto over research...."

Indeed, that is exactly what they want. Editors of journals should be woke enough by now to include "community representatives" on any decisions about whether to publish a paper. In fact, the editor should leave that decision entirely to the "community".

Going further upstream, an expectation is emerging that research design, data collection, analysis and conclusions should also be subject to "community review".

Ultimately, research funding itself should be in the hands of "community representatives". Some questions should not be asked, or answered.

Kirk

The question of "IQ" and "IQ testing" actually being indicative of real intelligence is arguable.

And, I would argue that if you look at the world around us, as built, run, and influenced by those who did "really, really well" on the tests, I might point out that the actual, y'know... Results? They're not quite living up to the promise.

I suspect that because the more chimeric bits of what make up "real intelligence", like the qualities we label "common sense" and "wisdom" aren't being measured, simply because they're unmeasurable in the format we've invented for testing "IQ", whatever that is actually a measure of. Myself, someone who also happens to do really, really well on tests, I suspect that what our traditional IQ test actually measures is a sort of high-functioning autism that tends to become highly self-referential and self-perpetuating, something that has warped our society completely out of contact with reality.

Ever listen to these people, and wonder how they got to be in charge? Yeah; like as not, they did really well on their tests in school, yet another institution that parted ways with reality some generations ago.

So, it's not really a canard that "conservatives don't do well on IQ tests", it's more a recognition that only the autistic educated-yet-idiot side of the equation tends to believe really, really hard in the things-that-aren't-quite-real which make up modern liberal thinking.

Farnsworth M Muldoon

Speaking of flags, this didn't go quite to plan...

David

Further to recent rumblings, more Marvel movie woes.

aelfheld

Presenting vulgar noises as a great accomplishment is different from praising a small child for using a potty how?

David

I’m still processing the term “people in bigger bodies.” It’s contrived and rather silly, but the connotations are interesting. It almost suggests that the person is merely inside some random fat body, separate from it somehow, like borrowing a big coat, and in no way responsible for its proportions, or what may follow from those proportions.

Daniel Ream

It almost suggests that the person is merely inside some random fat body, separate from it somehow

Daniel Ream

more Marvel movie woes

Marvel is certainly screwing up their brand as hard as the Star Wars business unit is, but I think ultimately this was inevitable: superhero stories are fundamentally hero myths, and there's only so many of those. Marvel managed to keep the ball rolling by blending teen romance tropes into the genre, and DC did it by blending detective fiction into it. The MCU hasn't really done much to extend the genre, and as David has pointed out nearly all MCU movies (plus a fair number of pre-MCU Disney movies) have the exact same core plot arc.

In the 1970's and 1980's comics were famous for appropriating whatever pop culture wasn't nailed down - Claremont stole Star Wars and Alien for some now-iconic issues, and Marvel crossed over Hammer Horror, Howardesque Sword & Sorcery, and Steve Reeves Sword & Sandal movies into their main superhero lines.

You can get away with that when you're writing for kids who still think lasersharking is cool, but when Marvel announces Shang-Chi the response is going to be a resounding, "aren't there like seven hundred movies like that on Netflix already?"

PiperPaul

Thanks for introducing me to the word 'lasersharking'.

David

but when Marvel announces Shang-Chi the response is going to be a resounding, “aren’t there like seven hundred movies like that on Netflix already?”

If I were as mean-spirited as rumour has it, I’d be amused by how horribly the diversity positioning has apparently backfired.

I saw, or rather glimpsed, an interview with the lead, Simu Liu, who was insisting that the film will be distinctive for its eye-catching fight choreography, which supposedly tops that of any other Marvel film. Well, okay, maybe it will. But why didn’t they put any of it in the trailer? It looks so… generic.

Alex DeWynter
... and in no way responsible for its proportions, or what may follow from those proportions.

That sounds as if you expect those follow-ons to be negative, h8r. Any unfortunate consequences of Brobdingnagian girth are entirely the result of the Big Thin Cabal's diabolical machinations. That's the only possible explanation.

It does rather remind me of the term 'falling pregnant.' As if someone tripped and got a baby accidentally wedged into her uterus.

pst314

Any unfortunate consequences of Brobdingnagian girth are entirely the result of the Big Thin Cabal's diabolical machinations.

Bwa-hah-hah-hah. We cruise around the city at night, looking for unwary victims whom we snatch off the street and force-feed a slurry of potato chips, candy bars, and Pepsi.

Joan

If I were as mean-spirited as rumour has it,

*zips mouth*

Uma Thurmond's Feet

force-feed a slurry of potato chips, candy bars, and Pepsi.

Ummm, are you appearing in my neck of the woods? I feel a bit peckish.

Pooklord

Maybe the "victim" microaggressed against keeping Portland weird.

The only thing "weird" or at least, unusual about Portland, is the firm conviction by a large number of residents that it is an extra special, super unique city--unlike any other.

It's not. It's like every other smug, rich, enclave convinced of it's own specialness.

See San Francisco, Seattle, Minneapolis, Ann Arbor etc.

P

Speaking of flags, this didn't go quite to plan...

Rita Panahi is an island of sanity on twatter.

Bigland

a moderately strong negative association between IQ and obesity

PE teachers are just an outlier then?

Daniel Ream

the film will be distinctive for its eye-catching fight choreography

So they're going to remake every John Woo/Tsui Hark/Yuen Wo-Ping movie ever?

If Marvel Studios had any competent writers, they could just grab any classic drama - Shakespeare is always a good choice - mix in some bright colours and action scenes and churn out perfectly serviceable superhero movies for another ten years.

(Now that I mention it, I find myself wondering if Jupiter's Legacy isn't just King Lear in spandex)

WTP

Presenting vulgar noises...

Oh, come on now people...13 following comments...several hours elapsed...y'all are really slipping here....BAND NAME! Or at the very least Vulgar Noises with first album "Presenting..."

Pooklord

BAND NAME!

Band name.

WTP

Band name

Well, seeing as there already has been The Band...and also The The, I suppose we could still stand to have a band called Name. Assuming it hasn't already been done.

PiperPaul

slurry of potato chips

Coincidentally, Yesterday I saw on YouTube where you can make mashed potatoes from potatoe chips. YMMV

TomJ

To lighten the mood, a Dutch horticultural drama...

John Lewis

Reminiscent of the film “A Town called Panic” where an order of 50 bricks to build a barbecue becomes 50 million.

a different james

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-9588595/The-FA-not-punish-fans-players-clubs-display-Israel-Palestine-flags-final-games.html

https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/football/43350447

Compare and contrast.

Taken from the Daily Mail article above:

A number of sports stars have posted messages of support with Palestine with Arsenal's Egyptian midfielder Mohamed Elneny tweeting on Monday: 'My heart and my soul and my support for you Palestine,' followed by a picture of the Palestine flag and a peace emoji.

Elneny's post resulted in a backlash from Arsenal's Jewish supporters because his tweet also included an image with the text 'Palestine Lives Matter,' which shows an outline of Israel with pro-Palestine pictures within.

According to the Jewish Chronicle, the Gunners' sponsor and coffee group Lavazza have since contacted the club to register their concern about them being linked with Elneny's message, amid rising tensions in the Middle East.

The coffee company said the post did not align with their own values, while Arsenal defended Elneny by stating he had the right to defend his own platforms.

This, of course is the same Arsenal which had this to say in December 2019:

Arsenal have distanced themselves from comments made by Mesut Özil on Instagram, in which he spoke out strongly against China’s persecution of the Uighur population in the north-western region of Xinjiang and criticised Muslims for not doing more to highlight the issue.

The club sought to limit any damage caused to its business in China, where it has numerous commercial interests including a chain of restaurants, by releasing a statement on Weibo – a leading Chinese social media site – as well as other platforms stressing it is apolitical and does not associate itself with Özil’s views.

“Regarding the comments made by Mesut Özil on social media, Arsenal must make a clear statement,” it read. “The content published is Özil’s personal opinion. As a football club, Arsenal has always adhered to the principle of not involving itself in politics.”

https://www.theguardian.com/football/2019/dec/13/arsenal-distance-themselves-from-mesut-ozil-comments-china-uighur-people

ComputerLabRat

Coincidentally, Yesterday I saw on YouTube where you can make mashed potatoes from potatoe chips.

Isn't that the reverse process of how Pringles are made? Whereas regular potato chips (crisps) are made by deep frying thinly sliced potatoes, I had always thought Pringles were made from mashed potato slurry baked into wavy crisp shapes. I could be wrong.

Pooklord

Ummmmm . . . slurry . . .

TomJ
I had always thought Pringles were made from mashed potato slurry baked into wavy crisp shapes. I could be wrong.

Well, partially potato. 42%. Which led to the Court of Appeal considering the Aristotelian question of the essence of potatoness...

pst314

Disturbing advertising slogan: "Pringles: You don't just eat 'em".

Alex DeWynter
Which led to the Court of Appeal considering the Aristotelian question of the essence of potatoness...

There's arete and then there's aretater.

Jay Guevara

The question of "IQ" and "IQ testing" actually being indicative of real intelligence is arguable.

"Real" intelligence being ... what?

IQ testing is intended to identify the cognitive complement of those being tested. It's not a guarantee that they'll ever amount to anything. It's much like an NFL hopeful's time in the 40 yard dash of the NFL Combine. Doing well in it doesn't mean the prospect will be successful in the NFL; it just means he has one of the attributes that could reflect promise in that endeavor.

And as such, both IQ testing and 40 yard dash times serve a useful purpose.

Sam Duncan

“Whereas regular potato chips (crisps) are made by deep frying thinly sliced potatoes, I had always thought Pringles were made from mashed potato slurry baked into wavy crisp shapes.”

Pringles are basically Discos with an education.

pst314

There's arete and then there's aretater.

Someone should write a biography of the developer of the Pringle, and title it "Engineer of Arete".

Jay Guevara

Consistent with earlier studies, [Louis Jacob and colleagues] observed a moderately strong negative association between IQ and obesity

To the surprise of ... no one. Probably the same thing obtains with smoking. The mechanism isn't hard to conjecture: ability to anticipate outcomes and consequences probably correlates with IQ, and those who do not prone to anticipating outcomes and consequences are probably more likely to be obese or to smoke.

WTP

ability to anticipate outcomes and consequences probably correlates with IQ, and those who do not prone to anticipating outcomes and consequences are probably more likely to be obese or to smoke.

Agree...ish...but now do alcohol. And possibly LSD.

Steve E

Pringles are basically Discos with an education.

Or uniformly pressed and fried Munchos.

Jay Guevara

Agree...ish...but now do alcohol. And possibly LSD.

How about engaging in crime? My favorite is the guys who rob a liquor store, pocketing a neat $200, and getting incarcerated for five years as a consequence.

Let's see, I make their net income from the robbery at about $0.11/day.

Alex DeWynter
The mechanism isn't hard to conjecture: ability to anticipate outcomes and consequences probably correlates with IQ

Probably, but I think there's something else involved, too. I know plenty of people with unhealthy habits (albeit no armed robbers ... I don't think), and pretty much all of them are aware that there can and most likely will be negative consequences to their smoking/drinking/overeating/whatever. The Persons of Circumference of my acquaintance will jeer right along with me at the sort of militant fat activists linked above. They know their flab is hurting them and will hurt them more in the future. It's just not enough to inspire them to do anything about it. Call it impulse control, self-discipline, or just gumption, they don't have it.

NTSOG

Is anyone interested in adopting some mice - perhaps a few hundred thousand?

PETA spokeswoman Aleesha Naxakis is urging "rural residents [in NSW, Australia where there is a mouse plague] to consider the welfare of the mice and avoid killing them with poison, instead suggesting the mice be gently caught and released unharmed.
“These bright, curious animals are just looking for food to survive,” PETA spokeswoman Aleesha Naxakis told NCA NewsWire.

“They shouldn’t be robbed of that right because of the dangerous notion of human supremacy.”

She said the government should take responsibility for the increase in mice and invest in humane methods of controlling the population. “In the meantime, we urge farmers and residents to avoid poisoning these animals,” Ms Naxakis said.

“This cruel killing method not only subjects innocent mice to unbearably painful deaths, but also poses the risk of spreading bacteria in water when mouse carcasses appear in water tanks.

“Instead, humane traps allow small animals to be caught gently and released unharmed.”

As for "... mouse carcasses appear in water tanks" the little beggars find infinite ways to drown themselves in buckets, rain water tanks and stock troughs without human assistance. Ms. Naxakis does not explain where humanely trapped mice should be released unharmed - perhaps her residence would be a good place to start?

https://www.news.com.au/technology/science/animals/mouse-plague-crisis-peta-cops-backlash-for-telling-farmers-not-to-kill-the-rodents/news-story/f107ba8f8fb80372a4cc9b1e23a164ee

NTSOG

Bigland: "PE teachers are just an outlier then?"

The broad label Physical Education covers a multitude of sinners and sins: some are educators of children [for life] and some others might best be described variously as jocks, games masters, coaches, sports masters whose narrow focus is training individuals and teams to win sporting competitions. Education is generally inclusive; sports competition tends to be exclusive - of lesser performers. In Indiana a famous Coach of basketball in Bloomington was Bobby Knight a very intense and competitive man. I once coached springboard divers at a university in Virginia and, automatically, the members of the team called me Coach. I demanded they cease immediately as I consider myself a teacher first and foremost. Unfortunately Physical Education attracts people who are brilliant athletes in their own right, but often they make lousy teachers as their own skilled performance is so easy and natural to them. They have never had to analyse the movements they perform so intuitively, easily and so gracefully, thus they cannot teach others to perform those skills. [In a sense they actually do not understand what they themselves actually do.] Nor can they comprehend, sometimes even tolerate the difficulties less able people have in mastering complex skills.

As for IQ levels the academic standard necessary to gain university entry was much higher when I studied PE in the late 1960s. In fact the course I attended in Australia was the second hardest course to gain entry after veterinary science because so many people wanted to enroll in it - it was the only PE course available.

Hopp Singg

Obesity increases inflammation. This is well understood and hardly controversial to state.

Less well known is the association between inflammation and lowered intelligence.
e.g. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6316362/

Lower IQ is associated with low-grade systemic inflammation and with an increased risk of schizophrenia and ONAP in adulthood.

Obesity negatively affects the functioning of pretty much every other organ and system in the body, so why not the brain? And anyone who's suffered through flu and their body's attendant inflammatory response understands the brain fog that comes with it.

juliaeryn

Obesity negatively affects the functioning of pretty much every other organ and system in the body, so why not the brain?

I think it is more likely that the relationship goes the other way - that low IQ predisposes people to obesity. Anecdotally, having worked with lots of people and visited sheltered employment for people with borderline and impaired range of IQ there does seem to be a strong tendency for people to be on the larger side. These folks have had an ID from birth, or early childhood, so it would seem the low IQ pre dates the obesity (of course, establishing the temporal sequence is not proof of causality).

Regardless, the effects found in the study are actually quite small - there is a LOT of overlap in these distributions. I was initially surprised at how small, but then noted all the things they controlled for (including employment and income, which are often proxies for education, which is highly correlated with IQ, and chronic health conditions) it makes more sense. they have essentially 'cancelled out' much of the variance in obesity. There really isn't much here to get butthurt about.

Also the authors bitch that BMI is a flawed measure. Yes it is if you are looking to assess the health of an in a single person - it doesn't account for differences in muscle mass etc. But if you are looking at population groups, it can be useful as a statistical tool. It's probably the most accurate 'single figure' summary measure of weight and health. You will get measurement error, absolutely, but that error will likely be distributed through your entire sample, so it is unlikely to affect the direction of your results. Plus, all measures that are not directly observable have a degree of error as they are a proxy for unobservable construct. The exact same argument can be made against IQ, or, to an even greater degree concepts the complaining authors view as crucial, including of self-esteem, discrimination, stigma, offence.

Ok I'm done.

Daniel Ream

But if you are looking at population groups, it can be useful as a statistical tool.

BMI was designed specifically for sedentary adults, and doesn't adequately account for the cube-square law. It breaks down for adolescents, physically active men and tall people. The best measurement of obesity is (unsurprisingly) body fat percentage, but that's time- and resource-intensive to measure.

BMI's ubiquity comes from the fact that it's easy to calculate from data that's commonly available, not from its value.

David

If Marvel Studios had any competent writers, they could just grab any classic drama - Shakespeare is always a good choice - mix in some bright colours and action scenes and churn out perfectly serviceable superhero movies for another ten years.

It’s telling, I think, that most of the recent announcements and coverage – at least, the announcements that I’ve registered - seem to revolve around the race, sex and sexuality of the actors, directors, etc., as if these are the things we should all be caring about, and caring about intensely, rather than any compelling premise or larger, multi-film narrative. I’ve heard lots about “representation” and the apparent “need” to have gay and “non-binary” characters in films about superheroes, and how “important” it is that Spider-Man, Loki, Valkyrie, and Peter Quill should be gay or bisexual. We’re assured, repeatedly, that the forthcoming Eternals will feature a gay kiss, but we’ve yet to be given any other reason to think that the film, about which the wider audience seems oblivious or pointedly uninterested, might be worth seeing.

And I can’t say I’ve ever committed half a day to travel across town to the local IMAX multiplex in order to behold superheroes kissing. Explosions and spectacle and derring-do, yes. Kissing, not so much.

David

Meanwhile, in “equity” news.

Juliaeryn

Hi Daniel,
Sure, body fat % is a better measure of health, but as you state, it's time consuming and labour intensive to assess so less useful as a statistical tool for large population based studies. For those bmi is still the best, though far from perfect, measure

TomJ
Obesity negatively affects the functioning of pretty much every other organ and system in the body, so why not the brain?

mens sane in corpore sano, as they used to say in the better sort of school.

Louis

Low IQ and conservatism sure seems to be "discussable."

IQ tests are a measure of your ability to infer abstract transformation rules and to apply those rules to new input.

Aha, triangles are transformed into squares and dotted areas are transformed into striped areas. So the new input - a big dotted triangle - will be transformed into a big striped square.

Aha, non-white violence and dysfunction are recast as white racism. So the new input - even more depraved non-white violence and dysfunction - will be recast as proportionally more depraved white racism.

Lower IQ people tend to be more influenced by the given facts in the foreground - violence and dysfunction - and have trouble applying the transformation rules that will enable them to "contextualize" the input and "change the conversation".

https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/millennial-media/201304/do-racism-conservatism-and-low-iq-go-hand-in-hand

The idea is that for those who lack a cognitive ability to grasp the complexities of our world, strict-right wing ideologies may be more appealing. Brian Nosek explained it for the Huffington Post as follows, “Ideologies get rid of the messiness and impose a simple solution. So, it may not be surprising that people with less cognitive capacity will be attracted to simplifying ideologies.”

If anything is a simplifying ideology, it's the belief that the whole world is within your intellectual and empathetic grasp. I don't think anybody has the cognitive ability to grasp the complexity of the world and the foreignness of foreigners. That's one of the good reasons to have separate countries and to deal with foreigners respectfully but at arm's length.

anon a mouse

statistical tool for large population based studies. For those bmi is still the best,

So, a reason why my first stats prof had great disdain for "big data" studies. Information derived from inaccuracy will only be correct by accident...

PiperPaul

The great thing about data and stats is that you can exclude what you don't like in order to "prove" your point and then shriek at people who have the audacity to question your numbers.

Governor Squid

So, a reason why my first stats prof had great disdain for "big data" studies.

So the reason why mean BMI in the U.S. has climbed so quickly is because everybody is hitting the gym and building up tons of lean muscle?

Well, knock me down with a feather!

WTP

If anything is a simplifying ideology, it's the belief that the whole world is within your intellectual and empathetic grasp. I don't think anybody has the cognitive ability to grasp the complexity of the world and the foreignness of foreigners. That's one of the good reasons to have separate countries and to deal with foreigners respectfully but at arm's length.

This. Also, somewhat similar...

why my first stats prof had great disdain for "big data" studies. Information derived from inaccuracy will only be correct by accident...
...
The great thing about data and stats is that you can exclude what you don't like in order to "prove" your point and then shriek at people who have the audacity to question your numbers.

I learned as much from what my high school educated, with limited post-war college educated, father told me regarding how kills were registered in the infantry during WWII. The upstream data, individual men making guesses as to who/what they shot, the damage, etc. which was highly emotionally and peer pressure driven, would be gathered, then most likely further manipulated at company then battalion, then brigade and on up levels, and then reported back in the Stars & Stripes news such that with so many IJA supposedly being killed they wondered why the war wasn't over yet.

While I mostly understood this thanks to him, and paid close attention to the one or two college statistics professors/teachers who did a very good job driving home what little one can actually derive from statistics (I'm guessing I was kind of lucky to have those guys), the value of the quality of input data was made even more clear/obvious to me when I worked with mostly static data later in my career, especially working with fingerprint and other biometric matching systems. The finest tweek to the parameters of the matchers could take an input of even as little as hundreds of thousands, producing potential matches of a half dozen, down to zero matches, or up to several dozen matches. And the settings one might fine tune working with one static data set might give even more useless results against another data set, be it of similar or significantly different volume. And this is with very, very static input data. When you consider damn near every "study" done, especially in health care but also psychology/politics/etc. has uncountable variations that influence the quality of input data, when the "reproduciblity crisis" arose I was far, far from surprised and wondered WTH weren't these questions being asked 30-40 years earlier?

Now this isn't to say that statistics are completely useless (my father would quote...Harry Truman?...about the three kinds of lies: Lies, Damned Lies, and Statistics). They provide some sort of guidance in a complex/complicated world on where to look. And when dealing with static input data in a static environment, you can learn certain limited things. It is still a very valuable tool. But the extreme confidence that even "educated" people...maybe especially "educated" people...put into what they learn from statistics is frightening. And socialism and such pretends to be science/statistics driven. God help us.

Steve E

so less useful as a statistical tool for large population based studies

Any study is accurate for the parameters used to define it. Otherwise, it doesn't get published. It's also possible to torture any data set until it gives up a wee "p" value. The problem with stats, in general, is assuming that observations made outside those parameters are also true, which is PiperPaul's point. As Daniel Ream points out, muscularity, height, and age are problematic parameters for any bmi study. Good statisticians will control for them, the worshippers of Scientism will not and will apply the same conclusions across the board and then report erroneous conclusions in the press.

anon a mouse

Good statisticians will control for them

You misspelled "unemployed statisticians".

As others have very wisely noted, whoever is paying said piper, etc., etc...

Daniel Ream

And I can’t say I’ve ever committed half a day to travel across town to the local IMAX multiplex in order to behold superheroes kissing.

Lacking writers with the ability or will to write a simple Hero's Journey plot, we're left with activists who want to shoehorn their obsessions into whatever the current pop culture trend is at the time.

I do wonder when or if market forces will catch up with all this. People just don't want to watch this dreck, and it's showing: WW84 getting dumped straight to streaming, the Zack Snyder cut of JL getting a meh kind of reaction, Marvel having to retool what were once planned movie releases into streaming shows. But all of that feels like budget-tightening rather than a reaction to the actual problem: people don't want this stuff. It's like a buggy-whip factory in 1920 deciding that they need to scale back production because profits were unexpectedly lower this year but Americans' appetite for buggy whips remains strong.

David

Lacking writers with the ability or will to write a simple Hero’s Journey plot, we’re left with activists who want to shoehorn their obsessions into whatever the current pop culture trend is at the time.

There’s also the fact that the more woke offerings are often morally incoherent, or simply perverse, which, in a story about heroes, tends to leave an unhappy aftertaste. WandaVision we touched on recently for its curious omission of any actual heroism, and before that, Captain Marvel, and I hear that Falcon and the Winter Soldier left several reviewers laughing at the finale’s ham-fisted platitudes and unsure of who they were supposed to be rooting for.

Governor Squid

One definitely gets the impression that they're trying to get us to pay top dollar for powder blue polyester leisure suits.

Space Age fabric! Buy now!

anon a mouse

Don't forget the puffy shirts. And heels.
*yes, I rocked the Angels Flight pants. Now get off my lawn*

Governor Squid

My uncle got married in 1981. Chocolate brown suits with waterfall-ruffle shirts in a lovely shade of apricot. My little brother was their ring bearer, so he got the hobbit-sized outfit.

We made my aunt bust out her wedding album last time the family were at their place, just so the younger generation could understand what we all lived through.

pst314

"I felt a terrible disturbance in the Force, as if millions of leisure suits were all put on at the same time."

Uma Thurmond's Feet

Imagine how Disney will make the wokest Indiana Jones movie ever.

No Spielberg or Lucas involved? Check.

Kathleen Kennedy involved? Check.

80-year-old Harrison Ford aboard? Check.

It gets worse. (h/t Critical Drinker)

Steve E

Chocolate brown suits with waterfall-ruffle shirts in a lovely shade of apricot.

Were the lapels about three feet wide?

I rented a tux for high school graduation in 1979. The lapels were huge. The tux was a "tasteful" creamy beige. The lapels were shiny satin. I remember seeing monstrosities similar to what you describe.

It's interesting because the skinny leather ties and skinny lapels had come back around 1976 when Punk was king. So I suppose fashion was just tilting the other way at the end of punk.

David

Lacking writers with the ability or will to write a simple Hero’s Journey plot, we’re left with activists who want to shoehorn their obsessions into whatever the current pop culture trend is at the time.

This is not, I think, a trivial detail. If you come to rely extensively on woke lefties as writers and storytellers, the people you’re hiring may be accustomed to being applauded for mouthing a patchwork of attitudes that’s internally incoherent and which will shift according to fashion. And so, for instance, we get activist “anti-racism” premised on obnoxiously racist assumptions about white people and their innate, collective guilt. Universal themes, the kinds of thing that suit tales about heroism, may be sidelined in favour of unconvincing gestures and narrow, often alienating, identitarian preoccupations. The results of which can be souring, baffling and morally bizarre.

As in the finale of WandaVision - a show in which the principal male characters are respectively a villain and a puppet - when Monica Rambeau, our Perfect, Empowered Black Woman, tells Wanda she needn’t hang around to face the consequences of her actions, adding, “They’ll never know what you sacrificed for them.” The they in question being hundreds of innocent people, including children, who were imprisoned and tortured, for weeks, by our supposed hero – such that they are seen begging for death - in order to service her own massively indulgent fantasy. The series even implies that the townspeople, the victims, are in the wrong for being unable or unwilling to sympathise with their torturer. “It wouldn’t change how they see me,” says Wanda, oozing self-pity.

According to head writer and Marvel protégé Jac Schaeffer, who also co-wrote Captain Marvel, we, the viewer, are very much meant to sympathise with a woman who does all this and who simply flies away afterwards, in order to focus on her own feelings.

Such sacrifice, such heroism. Again, what WandaVision and Captain Marvel say about woke psychology, I leave to the reader.

And this is before we get to the broader issue of whether you want to take moral lessons from the kinds of people who tend to gravitate towards the fantasy entertainment industry, or the entertainment industry more generally.

John Lewis

Chocolate brown suits with waterfall-ruffle shirts in a lovely shade of apricot.

Sounds like Peter Wyngarde was best man.

Jen

and who simply flies away afterwards, in order to focus on her own feelings.

That.

Nikw211

Imagine how Disney will make the wokest Indiana Jones movie ever.

If you come to rely extensively on woke lefties as writers and storytellers, the people you’re hiring may be accustomed to being applauded for mouthing a patchwork of attitudes that’s internally incoherent and which will shift according to fashion

Critical Drinker hits the nail on the head there.

What with Ford being 80, at best he'll have to be in a walk on part as some kind of Bosley figure to a trio of suitably diverse Charlie's Anthropologists. And yes I know that is obviously mixing different films, but that doesn't make it any less likely.

And I also know Jones was an archeologist, not an anthropologist, but since the former will no doubt be recast as an insensitive imperialist coloniser I wouldn't be surprised at all to discover that there will be a subplot with a twist which involves them liberating museum pieces and putting them back where they belong in some kind of supposedly ironic table-turning.

Naturally, Jones will be presented as some crotchety dry-as-dust old fart, a patriarchal gatekeeper trying to constrain their brilliance, and therefore (ironically) erasing the memory of Marion Ravenwood from the first movie and how she was no shrinking violet but a single woman entrepreneur who could drink macho Mongolians under the table, who packed a mean right hook, and who wasted no time in planning an escape from the French guy.

And since Jones is famous for fighting Nazis it does make me wonder whether the new enemy will, in fact, be Middle American Christian fundamentalist MAGA hat wearers, who are also secretly White Supremacists, who have a plan to steal some ancient relic that will help them bring about the Republic of Gilead for real.

If it doesn't end up being any of those things, I am pretty sure they will have been tabled at a production meeting at some point.

They are, after all, nothing if not drearily predictable.

David

That.

After ploughing through so much tedious self-indulgence, I’d hoped that the ending might be a little less shite. And from what I’ve heard, Falcon and the Winter Soldier has similar issues. But then, the terribly progressive writers and showrunners have boasted that they’re not interested in conventional tales of heroism, what with them being, like, so conventional and everything, and therefore unworthy of their vast and radical talents.

Sam Duncan

Honk!

Daniel Ream

WandaVision we touched on recently for its curious omission of any actual heroism

I think this actually supports my point, the more I think of it. Driven mad with grief by the traumatic loss of her lover, Wanda lashes out with her superpowers until she steps over the line and becomes a monster? We've seen that story before, and it's a pretty good one. A decent writer ought to have jumped at the chance to figure out how to redeem Achilles in the eyes of the viewer after the desecration of Hector. But in Marvel's Earth-Woke dimension, the privileged classes have no flaws - not that they don't do horrible things but rather that these things may not, by authorial diktat, be considered horrible. And so you get a town full of people imprisoned and psychologically tortured, and the main villain mind-controlled into an eternal mental prison that she gets to be fully aware of.

If Marvel had better writers they'd be setting up Wanda as an ersatz Dark Phoenix for the next Phase of MCU movies, in much the same way that Rich Meyer claims Riri Williams is actually a supervillain.

The results of which can be souring, baffling and morally bizarre.

The Hero's Journey is fundamentally a morality story - it communicates the culture's values. When the writers have no values in common with their audience, it's impossible to tell a story that will appeal to that audience. I've pointed out repeatedly that many recent writers and editors at Marvel & DC actually, vocally hate the entire idea of superheroes. There's no fix for that that doesn't involve massive purges of the bullpen.

David

Critical Drinker hits the nail on the head there.

Not entirely unrelated.

David

If Marvel had better writers…

I’ve just realised that Ms Schaeffer, who wrote WandaVision and co-wrote Captain Marvel, is also a co-writer of the forthcoming Black Widow film. You may wish to adjust your expectations accordingly.

Incidentally, did you make it to the end of WandaVision?

[ Edited. ]

Daniel Ream

Incidentally, did you make it to the end of WandaVision?

I did. I was left thinking this was clearly originally intended to be a movie and the script got dragged out about three hours too long; and that ultimately there were some good ideas in there that never really developed. None of the story elements ever really paid off.

And it also has the Frozen problem - 80% of the way through the writers realize the only credible villain they've presented is the protagonist, and so they shoehorn one in at the last minute.

A resounding meh. Sufficiently resounding that despite the fact that I quite like The Falcon, the Winter Soldier, and the actors who play them, WandaVision robbed me of any desire to watch their MCU outing.

Meh.

Imagine how Disney will make the wokest Indiana Jones movie ever.

I still maintain that Disney could make massive bank by casting Chris Pratt as a thirty-something Jones and putting him in an appropriately politically incorrect script.

Farnsworth M Muldoon

@Posted by: Nikw211

Somewhere in Hollywood, someone has just C&Ped that and only changed Marion Ravenwood to being the deadnamed Marvin Ravenwood, and is going to take it to a pitch meeting.

pst314

None of the story elements ever really paid off.

This seems to be an increasingly common sin. One of many reasons I tend to ignore current Hollywood "product".

Captain Nemo

Via Captain Nemo

I do like it when something I post makes its way above the line.

One of many reasons I tend to ignore current Hollywood "product".

I stopped watching modern television and films earlier this year. I don't miss them.

David

despite the fact that I quite like The Falcon, the Winter Soldier, and the actors who play them, WandaVision robbed me of any desire to watch their MCU outing.

Yes. It’s the inept, and ineptly politicised, writing that has rather soured the dish, and this wokeness has now created a brand-wide problem. For me, the balance has tilted from “Mostly fun with the odd piece of crap,” to “I will only see another one if my doubts are disproved by critics I trust.” Which itself is becoming a fairly short list.

David

I do like it when something I post makes its way above the line.

I’m totally switched-on and interactive, you know.

anon a mouse

I’m totally switched-on

You'll be Bach?

*lets self out of door, quietly*

pst314

I stopped watching modern television and films earlier this year. I don't miss them.

Once again, thanks to everyone who, a few threads back, suggested good TV shows from the 70's.

pst314

I’m totally switched-on and interactive, you know.

Note the flawless hair, too.

pst314

Q: Does a synthesizer have Buddha nature?
A: Moog.

anon a mouse

Note the flawless hair, too.

And a correct jack as well...

David

None of the story elements ever really paid off.

It managed to underwhelm in many ways.

80% of the way through the writers realize the only credible villain they've presented is the protagonist, and so they shoehorn one in at the last minute.

For the most part, I quite enjoyed the performances - Kathryn Hahn seemed to be having a good time - but it soon became obvious that the viewer speculation on social media was much more imaginative, and had much more potential, than what we were actually going to get in the final episodes. And which in no way made up for the sheer slog of what preceded it. Of course, any studio will have misfires. But when the misfires are frequent and quite jarring, and when they’re all broadly heading in the same direction in terms of assumptions and politics, then that probably tells us something.

pst314

And a correct jack as well...

There are a few gender changers in the box of cables, behind the synthesizer, though. [ Assumes innocent expression. ]
[ Checks Wikipedia. ] My God, Wendy Carlos is over 80 years old! [ Remembers that discovered Carlos' wonderful arrangements as a teen. Feels silly to be so shocked. Makes note to ask physician about Aricept. ]

anon a mouse

There are a few gender changers in the box of cables, behind the synthesizer, though.

And a cat. No one ever notices the cat.

C'est la vie.

David

Speaking of Marvel and wokeness.

The casting choice in question, which I think was actually rather good, and which resulted in a solid performance, is apparently a blemish on Mr Fiege’s woke soul.

WTP

Apparently "artisanal rockets" are a thing. Not being exceptionally artsy myself, I rely on people here to keep me informed about these things...

https://mobile.twitter.com/OliverMisher/status/1395015814424801280

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