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Jay Lake
Date: 2010-11-04 04:45
Subject: [links] Link salad wakes up, gets out of bed
Security: Public
Tags:art, books, cool, healthcare, kalimpura, links, mainspring, personal, politics, religion, reviews, science, weird
A reader reacts to Mainspring — Not so very much with the liking it at all.

The Bohn Rocket — I have some old Bohn ads framed on my wall here. I love these things, the retro-futurism just drips off them.

Galactic GPS Put Through Its PacesFor the first time, astronomers have reconstructed Earth's trajectory through the cosmos using pulsar signal.

Same poop, different gutFor physicians and researchers alike, fecal transplants present an opportunity to gain insight into disease. "Fecal transplant" is a term you don't run into every day. However, thanks to all my adventures in colon cancer, I've been through enough rounds of having my intestinal flora blown out and re-established to see the point of this story from first-hand experience.

A Little More (Actually Quite a Bit More) on Shari'ah — Ta-Nehisi Coates quoting his commentors on Shariat law. Interesting.

Did the Tea Party Help or Hurt the Republicans? — An economist applies the opportunity cost principle to politics, comes up with unsurprising results.

GOP Voters Have The Leadership They Deserve — Conservative commentator Daniel Larison on the election results.

?otD: What makes you happy?

Writing time yesterday: 1.5 hours (3,600 new words, to 11,100 words on Kalimpuraa full Lake and to spare)
Body movement: 30 minute stationary bike ride
Hours slept: 6.75 hours (solid)
This morning's weigh-in: n/a
Yesterday's chemo/post-op stress index: 4/10 (fatigue, peripheral neuropathy, emotional distress)
Currently reading: I Wonder by Marian Bantjes

Post A Comment | 6 Comments | | Link

Lorraine with the heaving zombie bosoms: Books fly
User: blucola
Date: 2010-11-04 12:52 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Keyword:Books fly
My thought is that this is a reader who doesn't like her fantasy terribly fantastical. I've recced Mainspring to customers who were looking for something epic, but different from other things they've picked up in the past, and at least one has come back very pleased (the others were tourists, people who likely will be in the store just once.)
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Jay Lake: writing-Mainspring
User: jaylake
Date: 2010-11-04 13:04 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Yah. I'm not offended. I mean, I've said a zillion times that the story belongs to the reader. But I'm always interested in why people don't like my stuff, if you know what I mean,

And thank you for the recs!
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Brian Dolton
User: tchernabyelo
Date: 2010-11-04 15:43 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
That Tea Party piece is interesting, as I've commented on my blog already about just how absurd the headlines and lead stories have been - "The Republicans, led by the Tea Party..." ...um, no.

In the comment thread there are some interesting TP supporters saying that without the TP the Republicans would have got nowhere in these midterms. Um, not convinced about that. Midterm elections in an economic slump ALWAYS show a big swing to the party in opposition. Sadly, there are no controlled experiments in politics, no "what ifs", but for my money the Tea Party added nothing to the Republican successes, and definitely caused problems in Nevada, Delaware and abve all Alaska which looks like being hilarious. Whether the actual TP candidates (as opposed to establishment GOP figures jumping on the TP bandwagon - there were a few of those to be seen, and those who jump on bandwagons will jump right off them again when convenient) will have any real influence in the legislature, I don't know. They almost certainly WILL get a lot of media coverage, which will probably continue the trand of making the TP seem bigger than it is, and less opposed than it is (there's arguably a "silent majority" against teh TP, and the advantage of its silence is that the TP can't shout it down).
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David Broussard
User: dbroussa
Date: 2010-11-04 15:58 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
I think Mr. Wolfers misses a major impact of the T.E.A. party on the voter turn out and enthusiasm. One example is in my district (TX28). IN 2008, there was no GOP candidate at all and the Democrats took 87% of the vote (with a turn out of about 78K voters). In 2008 the Democrat once again carried the district handily 68%-29% with a turn out of 180K voters. This election the Democrat won 56%-41% with a turnout of about 110K voters. Failing that excitement of the T.E.A. party turnout would very likely have been much closer to the 2006 level and so turn out goes up by 30K voters from 06-08 and is over 60% of the 2008 turnout. The GOP candidate was a T.E.A. party nominee and a political neophyte (which was ruthlessly exploited by the incumbent). It is doubtful that the GOP can win this district even because it was designed as a Democratic stronghold with three main counties (2 that voted strongly Democratic, 70% and 85% and one that voted strongly Republican 70%) that add up to 71% of the total votes cast in the district.

So, historically, the Democrats OWN TX28 lock stock and barrel with the incumbent rarely spending anything on advertising. This cycle the GOP mounted a legitimate challenge that force the incumbent to actually have to spend money defensively in a "safe" district. Another example can be seen in the defeat of the Democratic incumbent in TX23 where the GOP lost by 13 points in 2008 and won by 10 points in 2010...once again a T.E.A. party candidate who was a political neophyte.

So, the opportunity cost of the T.E.A party not existing would have (in my opinion) lead to much smaller GOP gains in this cycle in both the House and Senate and honestly the Democrats would have likely retained control of the House. The T.E.A. party is an example of people getting very involved in politics in ways that are not usually seen on the Right. The real question is...will that enthusiasm last past this election cycle...in other words, is this a real movement or a one time fling. The turnout numbers of 18-30 years olds in 2008 versus 2010 indicate that the "youth movement" that helped propel President Obama into office in 2008 evaporated in 2010 (I looked for some hard data on that but didn't find any right now, but I have heard this mentioned a few times in the media today).
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User: spencimusprime
Date: 2010-11-04 21:57 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Hey, Jay, you probably heard, but you did get a gushing review of Mainspring on the Writing Excuses podcast with Brandon Sanderson. Some goodness.
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Jay Lake
User: jaylake
Date: 2010-11-05 02:37 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Wow, cool. I did not know that. Got link? :D
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