Saturday, July 20, 2019

John Fish talks about summer learning, has us guessing about his upcoming "announcement"


John Fish talks about how “Learning for Fun Could Change Your Life”.


This is a good video for summer break, and it sounds like a video that would go well with “Skillshare”.  Actually, John’s video has a sponsor of Audible.com (which would not sound consistent with speed reading of volumes of books in college.  Has he read any of mine?
  
John says he will have a major announcement next week, and has us guessing on what it is about.  Will John, from his Harvard dorm room, prove he has as much power as Mark Zuckerberg (not a good thing, maybe;  John is from Canada so he can’t ever be president).  But David Pakman (across the Cambridge river from Harvard in Boston – hint for an interview) did a video today on a new cryptocurrency startup (Pukkamex, which seems to resembled Minds), so I would guess John’s thing might be related to something like this.  John has said he is writing a book (related to a class last year) on the attention economy, which relates to social credit (maybe) and logically to cryptocurrency (maybe).

John rarely takes up politics on this channel, but last spring he did talk about the book “Moral Tribes” by Josh Greene.  About a week later, Tim Pool started using examples or scenarios from the book in his own channel.  You can follow Jordan Peterson’s personal growth advice and retain your political independence.

In some of the recent videos it looks like he is using a GoPro and getting some distorted lines and geometric proportions among objects around him as he films himself. 

Tuesday, July 16, 2019

"No Filming on Farms": Stossel on Reason TV



I find myself having to return to Reason TV a lot, as John Stossel keeps having to cover more disconcerting situations.

A women was arrested for filming a farm in Utah from public land.  Later the charges were dropped.
  
Utah is one of several states that have “ag-gag” laws to prevent people from getting onto farms under false pretenses to film (for animal rights abuses).


It’s likely that these laws would violate the First Amendment, although possibly trespassing laws or other legal doctrines could prohibit journalists from pretending to take jobs to film.

Most workplaces don't allow the public to film their employees at work, that sounds reasonable enough. And even some bars and discos now don't allow photography inside as privacy concerns re-emerge after all the social media scandals;  ten years ago they did.  But thirty years ago people didn't want to appear on TV at gay churches or meetings. 
   
This happened with ABC and Food Lion in the 1990s.

Monday, July 15, 2019

CNN's "The Movies": "The 90's" brings back memories for me


CNN has started a new series, “The Movies”, on Sunday nights.  The 90s brought back good memories from the most interesting decade of my life.

A few of the movies discussed included Ebert favorites, many of them from Miramax.  These included “Pulp Fiction”, with its closed circle plot, “The English Patient” (a favorite of mine), and I have to remember “Fargo” (Coen Brothers).


In the 90s there was a lot of creativity, and the studios tended to be willing to try new plot ideas and new concepts rather than repeating formulas in franchises.  The decade ended, of course, with the three “Matrix” movies (WB).

There were a couple big disaster movies, “Deep Impact” (comet), and “Armageddon” (asteroid).  The comet movie had an unusual scene where people got phone calls (pre smart phone) if they were chosen to survive, a dangerous concept now. Armageddon had an odd scene where near the end Ben Affleck is driving what looks like a Hertz-rented jeep on an asteroid (very low gravity). 

Dreamworks was founded, and its first film, “The Peacemaker”, featured a collision of two trains with a nuclear explosion resulting.

Gay themes were treated with some subterfuge, as when Matt Damon appears in Patricia Highsmith’s novel “The Talented Mr. Ripley” set in Italy in the 50s. Damon’s character didn’t invite his companion to share a bathtub, at least. Jude Law’s character looks at him on the beach and says “You’re so white.”

Another weird one was “The Truman Show”, centering around making a whole bubble world around Jim Carrey.

Bill Pullman was laughable in "Independence Day" as a US President fighting alien hives. He demanded empathy for what happens to him in "Lost Highway", from David Lynch. 

Sunday, July 14, 2019

Libertarian Party candidate wins county election in CA, highest elected office for a Libertarian now in the country




Jeff Hewitt is apparently the highest elected official in the Riverside County seat, elected in 2018, in ide CA.


Reason TV explains his background in swimming pool business, and his opposition to licensing of small businesses like baking cookies for bake sales (John Stossel had reported on a similar situation in Charlotte NC).

He suggests picking winnable local races and stress being socially liberal and using common sense in reducing regulation under union or protectionist impulses.
  
Wikipedia: By daveynin from United States. Cropped and color-corrected by Daniel Case prior to upload - Yucca pines near trail, CC BY 2.0, Link

Saturday, July 13, 2019

Reviewing Pakman's depiction of the alt-right


A couple years ago David Pakman did a good explanation of the alt-right, including its collectivist, authoritarian nature that in some way parallels the regressive Left.


It seems well worth viewing again.
  
This explanation came forth right after Donald Trump’s election.

Update: May 16

There is a humorous marketing video of Pakman "modeling" for a massage demonstration in 2008, when he would have been 24. It got noticed recently. How long can young men resist entropy?

Wednesday, July 10, 2019

Fox covers the All Star game in Cleveland; boyhood memories of "The Mistake by the Lake"


I’ll note the MLB All Star game because it was played in Cleveland’s Progressive Field, main box score and writeup. The American League won, 4-3.  The only National there, Max Scherzer, did not pitch, and Anthony Rendon is letting some minor injuries heal a little more completely. 


I remember baseball games in the old Municipal Stadium by the Lake, with the symmetrical field and wire fence in center.

I didn't hear whether the extended protective netting has been placed in Progressive Field.
 
Father would be on sales trips, and mother and I would stay in Kipton (40 miles) with her mother and other relatives. So we usually went to a day game in Municipal Stadium if the Senators came to town (one time the Senators actually won when Pascual pitched a shutout, 4-0).
 
And we made cardboard or plywood stadiums and played pinball baseball in them (with wadded up aluminum foil as baseballs), at home.  We even built a real stadium with a wire fence in a farm yard (two miles from Kipton near US-20, toward Oberlin). I’ll have to relook at “Field of Dreams” and we had home run derbies and “buntorama”.

Kids learned to be creative with real life objects, making them into miniatures, before there was social media.

Tuesday, July 09, 2019

Reason TV reports on cities using homeowner fines and foreclosures as a major source of revenue



John Stossel on Reason TV reports a story of a man in Dunedin, FL (in the Tampa Bay area), whom the city has threatened with foreclosure for not paying massive fines associated with not mowing his lawn when called away for a death in the family.


The video suggests that some cities look at fines and foreclosures as a source of revenue.
  
These kinds of problems can occur with homeowner’s associations in townhomes and buildings. They might happen with home-based businesses that are not allowed by bylaws. For example, a woman in Austin TX was not allowed to keep a dog grooming business in her home.