Linkblogging For 08/08/12

I’m trying very hard to get the Preservation Act II piece done, but I actually now have panic attacks when I even think about writing about either politics or music, thanks to the various recent troll infestations (many of which only made it to my inbox, rather than to the comments section proper, thanks to the comment moderation I’ve got turned on here). Since Preservation Act II is a political album, it’s taking a while to get the nerve up. I’m hoping the post will be up tonight, but for now, here are some links.

Millennium on the Lords Reform debacle
. Brilliant piece which sums up my thoughts exactly.

BoingBoing asks what fundamentalist Christians have against set theory
. It’s interesting that fundamentalists would choose this of all things to be against, because you can actually construct a fairly good proof of the existence of God in set theory… (I don’t, however, think that argument works once you use Pearl’s mathematical formalism of causality rather than the definition they use there. Maybe fundamentalists should hate directed acyclic graphs and Bayes’ theorem instead? ;) )

The surviving Monkees — including Mike Nesmith — are reuniting for a 12-date US tour in November. We can only hope that a UK tour will follow…

Heresy Corner on the disgraceful ‘porn trial’ which led, thankfully, to an acquittal today
. We *must* get rid of the abhorrent provisions against ‘extreme porn’.

An animated .gif showing the frequency of high-frequency trading over the last few years. I don’t know if I agree with the conclusion — that it shows the need for a financial transaction tax — or the argument in the comments that it shows that the possibility of rent-seeking is being destroyed by automation. But it definitely shows that something has changed *profoundly* in the last five years…

Prometheus: Calvinball Mythology And The Fall Of Meaning

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2 Responses to Linkblogging For 08/08/12

  1. Ugh – just wanted to say I am very sorry about the panic attacks in relation to two of your favourite things, and especially when the cause is hostile people deliberately setting out to provoke exactly that sort of reaction. You have my sympathy, and I hope you’ll feel able to say what you want to say about the Preservation Act II album in spite of it all.

    And I absolutely agree about Millennium Elephant’s piece on Lord Reform. I shall be coming back to that and reading it for inspiration next time someone tries to tell me constitutional reform isn’t important.

    • Andrew Hickey says:

      Thanks. I’m not going to let them beat me, but when I finally forced myself to write the first few paragraphs of the piece, on Sunday, I literally had to spend an hour and a half getting over the shakes it inspired. The deliberate hostility has pretty much only come from the political people, but I’ve been getting so much negativity from people who just don’t like my music writing — mostly because they don’t understand the basic concept of criticism as opposed to a combination of hagiography and the obsessive listing of facts, which seems to be what most people actually want in music writing — that I’ve seriously considered not writing about music *at all* once I’ve finished the later Beach Boys books (which I’ve already committed to doing).

      But enough people *do* like my writing that I’m not going to let either trolls *or* the functionally illiterate stop me.

      And not only is constitutional reform important, it’s also far more popular than people would have you believe. Remember that more people voted yes in the AV referendum, disastrous as it was, than voted for any party except Labour in this year’s local elections.

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