The Real Interrobang -- You STILL Can't Do That On Slashdot|
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|Wednesday, December 4th, 2013|
|New Paper from NEJM on Vaccines -- Wow!
Vaccines. They work, bitches.
A team of researchers on a project called Tycho compiled a massive number of disease reports (as they put it, "87,950,807 reported individual cases," to be exact) and looked at the pattern of incidence for a bunch of diseases, between the start of record-keeping in the US in 1888, and 2011. As they said,
We estimated the number of cases that have been prevented since the introduction of vaccines for seven of the eight diseases. (Since there were no data from the era before the introduction of the smallpox vaccine in 1800, we could not quantify the number of smallpox cases that were prevented by the vaccine.) We estimated the numbers of cases of polio, measles, rubella, mumps, hepatitis A, diphtheria, and pertussis that were prevented by vaccines by subtracting the reported number of weekly cases after the introduction of vaccines from a simulated counterfactual number of cases that would have occurred in the absence of vaccination, assuming that there were no other changes that would have affected incidence rates. We used the year of vaccine licensure as the cutoff year to separate the prevaccine period from the vaccination period. Counterfactual numbers were estimated by multiplying the median weekly incidence rate from prevaccine years with population estimates for vaccination years.
They then plotted incidences on a graph with a line delineating the date of licensure for the disease in question. The data is stunning
. (The really cool bit is that in the pre-vaccine part, you can see the natural peak-and-valley incidence pattern for each disease, and it's different for each disease.)
Read the rest... Current Mood: impressed
|Tuesday, December 3rd, 2013|
|Quotes, The Rocks In My Ears Aren't Working Anymore Edition
Whiskey tango foxtrot bang query bang query!
-- mclaren, Balloon Juice, comments
People joke that General Rommel will soon be put in charge of Berlin, because he's great in desert wasteland.
-- German joke of late in WWII, quoted in "Storyville: Laughing With Hitler"
Got up before dawn, shovelled a foot of snow off the truck, played hockey, shot a moose. I am more Canadian than a beer commercial.
-- Twitter user @dgardner
Of course corporations are the same as religious institutions. Whenever I hear a news story about corporations, the first words out of my mouth are..."Jesus Christ." Religious power like that easily qualifies for total tax exempt status.
-- ReverendBluester, Panic in Funland, comments
Even the nicest people have their limits. Don't try to reach that point because the nicest people are also the scariest assholes when they've had enough.
-- tumblr user himchanspenus, spotted on imgur( Fortunately, I can reset the rocks.Collapse ) Current Mood: blah
|Hating on Adoptees, Part the Approaching Infinityth
Southern Baptist leader says single moms should give up their kids for adoption
, because Gawd intends all children to have two-parent Christian homes, even if It didn't see fit to make sure those children were born into two-parent Christian homes, apparently. According to the article's math, which which I can't argue much, his proposal would flood children's services agencies in the US with something on the order of 21 million children.
I have never seen a case where the type of parents he wants for adoptees adopt and everything comes out for the best; usually the situation winds up being a family with so staggeringly many children the kids don't get any attention, the parents can't do all the work, and the oldest kids don't get to have childhoods. In other cases, as I've mentioned before, it leads to abuse and death. Current Mood: annoyed
|Monday, December 2nd, 2013|
|Update on Horrible Body Happenings
I talked to Dr. Ridiculously Good-Looking today about the incident the other week, and he's going to talk to Dr. New Medical Nerd about referring me to a surgeon. Thank g-d, because 34 years of this (escalating) BS is enough
. Current Mood: satisfied
|Tuesday, November 26th, 2013|
Approximately three weeks after my two-year start date anniversary, I finally got my one-year-of-service token gift. I selected a blue fuzzy blanket -- dark cobalt blue on the top side, with Really Big IT Company's name and logo on it, fake lambswool on the bottom side. It's a nice piece of kit, and very very very warm. I think it's going to make some friends around the house, not to mention compensate for the fact that my office -- with its two outside walls -- is the coldest room Chez Geek. Current Mood: amused
|Monday, November 25th, 2013|
|Quotes, People Keep Giving Me Their Germs Edition
I’ve seen a BMW parked on my street with two license plate frames on the front of the car. The bottom one is the license tag and above that is the swastika.
-- BillinGlendaleCA, Balloon Juice, comments
I had a number of college professors deliberately trying to move away from the "professor lecturing at you for an hour" model and devote more time to class participation. After four years of experiencing both models, I have to say, I vastly prefer the "professor lecturing at you for an hour" model. I mean, listen to a highly educated person who knows what they're talking about, or 20 uninformed yokels (I count myself among the uninformed yokels, lest you think I'm being elitist) spouting ignorant nonsense? Is the latter choice really so appealing?
-- Triplanetary, Alicublog, comments
In grad school during the early 70s, little ol' white me dated a black woman for a time. We got lots of nasty, rather loud commentary in public. Now, I'm married to a mixed-race woman and have two kids in tow. Only heard an objection once in three years, at a restaurant, by a bunch of drunks. They got kicked out.
-- LeopoldvonRanke, Raw Story, comments
I give it five years, tops, before the teahadis drop the pretense and start demanding “affirmative action” to put RWNJs into tenure-track positions. They’ll come up with some ludicrous name for it, of course, since they’ve been slinging mud at the original name for thirty+ years.
-- Matt, Lawyers, Guns, & Money, comments
Graffiti was at one point encouraged until it became too popular and started covering up covert messages instead of aiding them to blend in.
-- ConspiracyTheorist, imgur, comments( Everyone's sick Chez Geek...Collapse )
|Sunday, November 24th, 2013|
|Posting here to avoid the FB Jewish Mothers
disorienting to wake up in the middle of the night because you've stopped breathing because your stomach contents are pattering out your nose.
(The problem with having so many Jewish friends on FB is that pretty much all the women are somebody's Jewish mother, and they've all more or less adopted me, too. Wouldn't be the first time, I guess...) Current Mood: annoyed
|Saturday, November 23rd, 2013|
|This, and then some
It's only November 23! That still leaves more than a month until Christmas! *sigh* Current Mood: grumpy
|Thursday, November 21st, 2013|
...is the only cat I've ever owned who not only will go out in the rain, but will come back in again and demand
to be towelled off. Current Mood: blah
|Saturday, November 16th, 2013|
|Quotes, The Million Moron March Edition
It’s tokenism at its finest — “we’ll let ‘your kind’ in, all right…one
of ‘your kind’. That’s even, right? That’s fair?”
-- Woodrow/asim Jarvis Hill, Balloon Juice, comments
"god-bothering": I admit it, I frequently ask the Lord in prayer, "Do you have Prince Albert in a can?" Not to mention that time I rang His doorbell and ran away.
-- mds, Alicublog, comments
I wonder which would be worse for the typical hardcore racist, finding they have African heritage ancestors, or Jewish ancestors.
Why choose? Ethiopian Jewish ancestors. The exploding skull would be a mess to clean up, but the expression would be priceless
-- tim_gueguen and keithmm
, More Words, Deeper Hole, comments [None of the White Power Flowers are pretty enough to have had Ethiopian Jewish ancestors. -- ?!
In the 20s and 30s, Dad noticed that his father wept every time a certain popular song was played. The song was "My Buddy", recorded by Henry Burr. Eventually, he told my father why the song made him cry. He said there was a guy in his unit, presumably another Private, called "Hymie", who was a good friend. In one engagement, Hymie got caught on the barbed wire and couldn't escape as they made it back to their emplacement. He survived into the night, with the Germans using him for target practice. They know this because he kept calling out to my Grandfather by name, begging: "If you ever loved me, shoot me now." But he couldn't do it.
-- Doctor Science, “Veteran’s Day: ‘Your Buddy misses you’,” Obsidian Wings
None are so blind as those who will Nazi.
-- TheGrandWaz, Raw Story, comments( Since folks were talking about vintage SF...Collapse ) Current Mood: bleah
|Friday, November 15th, 2013|
|The Internet 1, Bankstaz 0
So JP Morgan decided to solicit questions on Twitter
, with predictably hilarious results, which you can search under the hashtag #AskJPM:
User @LoftusCharlotte writesIs it true that, while you don't always spit on poor people, when you do, you have perfect aim?
User @ddayen (Salon's David Dayen) askedWhat's it like working with Mexican drug cartels? Do they tip?
and Do you have a secret jail in your offices so your executives get at least one chance to see the inside of one?
User @reftpt askedHow do you decide who to forclose on? Darts or a computer program?
User @amy10506 askedDid you have a specific number of people's lives you needed to ruin before you considered your business model a success?
User @ComparePMPrices askedWhat illegal deals did Jamie Dimon and the other big banks make with Obama at the closed-door meeting on Oct 2, 2013?
User @lisaansell3 askeddo you feel bad about systematically undermining democracy? Do you know what fiduciary duty is?
User @emptywheel askedWhy aren't you in jail for sending a literal ton of gold bullion to Iran in violation of sanctions?
and most brilliantly, user @AdamColeman4 askedCan I have my house back?
A lot of the press has been reporting this as people being "mean" to JPM online, or "trolling," which framing demoralizes me greatly. Lisa Ansell summed it up after JPM cancelled the event
, by asking "Sorry we ruined your hashtag event, if you could just apologise for your plunder of the global economy, I think we'd be even." Current Mood: amused
|Thursday, November 14th, 2013|
|QOTD: But what's an "erig"?
Remember, that secesh battle flag is a symbol of heritage, not hate, and stuff.
Yeah, you take hate out of that kind of heritage and all you have left is "erig".
-- chrislib and Fentwin, Raw Story, comments Current Mood: amused
|Tuesday, November 12th, 2013|
|Quotes, Please Take My Breasts Off and Leave My Morale Edition
The richest 400 families now control more wealth than the GDP of Russia. Me thinks that while they might not be winning everything, they’re certainly winning all the important stuff.
-- C.V. Danes, Balloon Juice, comments
Cancer can go right to hell and have sex dreams about Rush Limbaugh for all eternity.
-- Annie Staton-Prokop, Facebook, comments
When all you've got is a hammer, everything looks like a sickle.
-- AGoodQuestion, Alicublog, comments
do you ever get into one of those situations where you're like "I need to stop hating this particular person it's not going to get me anywhere I'm just going to grow up and move on with my life" but then they do the tiniest thing to piss you off and then you're like "nope fuck you right off I want to throw you off a bridge"
-- tumblr user gleeson666, spotted on imgur
I'm not a believer in less is more. More is more, but it has to be the "right" more.
-- Elizabeth Savetsky, interview on Fashion-Isha.com( And other hits from the same Markov chain.Collapse ) Current Mood: awake
|72 Days of Whooping Cough.
On the first day of whooping cough, B. pertussis gave to me...a mild fever and a sniffle-y...Julia Ioffe at TNR
(herself) and putting the blame squarely where it belongs -- on people who won't vaccinate (either themselves or their kids).
I had it when I was nine, because back then we didn't know that the immunity one gets from the first set of shots in early childhood wears off about then. I don't remember much about it, except that I was off school for three weeks, couldn't stop coughing for weeks after that, and was generally miserable. Things which do
stand out clearly to me are having both my parents crammed into the bathroom with me to hold my head over the toilet as I coughed so hard I heaved and spasmed, and my mom feeding me some aspirin, which didn't even last long enough in my stomach for the pills to dissolve at all. I also recall that I spent a lot of time on the couch in the living room, because I was so exhausted it was literally hard for me to climb the stairs from my bedroom to the bathroom, and for at least a few days, I had to be helped to the bathroom. I'm not sure if that was because of exhaustion or whether it was because I was coughing so hard I couldn't really keep my balance. (Thanks, cerebral palsy!)
Fortunately, I was privileged enough to come from a family where my mom didn't work and my dad could arrange lots of time off, so they were able to take care of me and my sister, who was only a baby at the time. (I have no idea if they asked our doctor to vaccinate her possibly ahead of schedule because of my being sick.) I'm sure my parents didn't know that antibiotics get rid of B. pertussis (even still, the cough hangs around).
There's a reason lots of really miserable diseases have vaccines -- they're really miserable diseases
. Not only that, but pertussis can kill young infants (should I have titled this entry "How I Almost Killed My Sister"?). Current Mood: annoyed
|Monday, November 11th, 2013|
|I heard the news today, oh boy...
There have been about six train derailments in the last four months, three of them (that I can recall) in Alberta. Can it be what Ed the Bus Driver said about rail deregulation (something that must have happened in secret to even this rail-watcher) at the federal level is true? Research awaits, apparently. Current Mood: curious
|Saturday, November 9th, 2013|
They seem to have helped for the worst symptoms of the sinusitis, but they aren't doing shit about my post-nasal drip. This is getting seriously annoying. Current Mood: annoyed
|Friday, November 8th, 2013|
|Tuesday, November 5th, 2013|
|Monday, November 4th, 2013|
|Such sinus infection, very influenza, wow
According to my Ridiculously Good-Looking Resident-type Doctor today I've managed to get both la grippe
and a sinus infection.
Pray for me, or other hits from the same album, which has obviously been issued by K-Tel and came pre-warped for your convenience. Current Mood: sick
|Sunday, November 3rd, 2013|
|Quotes, Such Tired, Very Sickness, Wow Edition
It’s hard for me to call someone who lacks empathy a “liberal”. Lefty-cosplay dudebros might be more like it.
-- Another Halocene Human, Balloon Juice, comments
I have a different definition of hell. When you die, you meet the man you could have become.
-- nfbassman, imgur, comments
“Kinism” is their BC (Biblically Correct) term for racism– they say “racism” is a pejorative, so they call themselves “Kinists” instead (you know, like the way ID proponents say “creationism” is a pejorative.) Kinists are followers of the fascist, racist, pro-eugenics, Holocaust-denying creationist Rousas Rushdoony.
-- diogeneslamp0, The Panda’s Thumb, comments
When I'm supposed to watch my words, I tend to say the wrong ones.
-- Anonymous, “Why I Will Never, Ever Go Back to the United States,” AlterNet.org
Water as an asset class will, in my view, become eventually the single most important physical-commodity based asset class, dwarfing oil, copper, agricultural commodities and precious metals.
-- Citigroup economist Willem Buiter, quoted in “Privatizing Water: ‘Taxing Through the Tap’,” World Business Academy( Very sinus wow.Collapse ) Current Mood: sick