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heathersquire:

The starting point of all this is the premise that a graduate degree in Sociology is a financially irrational decision for most people. Whether a person pays for a terminal Masters degree or gets funding for five years in a PhD program, the combination of being out of the workforce for several…

I suspect that a lot of Ph.D.’s (myself included) made the decision without a lot of thought. It just seemed like a good idea, an obvious trajectory. In those days, the labor market wasn’t so punishing as today. And the issue of education debt was very, very different. I think I graduated with a BS in Psychology with about $7,500 in loans. I got full funding, including a stipend (supplemented with additional teaching, and then statistical consulting.) I was living in Boston on about $8,000 a year.

What is happening in the labor market today (academic and otherwise) is grossly unfair.

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edroso:

micdotcom:

America’s high school dropout rate is at a record low — with a huge drop among black and Hispanic students

The U.S. education system is struggling to catch up to international standards, but we are least making big gains on lowering the high school dropout rate, especially among black and Hispanic students.

According to a new Pew Research Center report, there’s a lot of good new to celebrate: The U.S. high school dropout rate is the lowest ever recorded, with just 7% of 18- to 24-year-olds leaving school in the last year, a steady decline from 12% in 2000.

Why this is happening now | Follow micdotcom 

Some things are getting better. They’re just not the things a lot of people who always pretend to care want to talk about, for some reason.

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brooklynmutt:

"Young Nigel waits for the rest of the #FergusonOctober marchers to catch up." - @KoranAddo

The future gets decided here and now.

brooklynmutt:

"Young Nigel waits for the rest of the #FergusonOctober marchers to catch up." - @KoranAddo

The future gets decided here and now.

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wilwheaton:

(via xkcd: Marriage)
It’s appalling to me that the majority of Americans didn’t approve of interracial marriage until 1995. We need to recognize that America has been, and continues to be, a *profoundly* racist country.

wilwheaton:

(via xkcd: Marriage)

It’s appalling to me that the majority of Americans didn’t approve of interracial marriage until 1995. We need to recognize that America has been, and continues to be, a *profoundly* racist country.

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"I am an atheist myself so I suppose I should be sympathetic to Maher and Harris here, but I’m not because because it’s an irrational intellectually nonsensical point of view. There are 1.6 billion Muslims in this world. And a few thousand of them —- hell it could be a few hundred thousand of them —- are members of the extremist fringe that wreaking havoc in the middle east and causing everyone else to pee their pants. Nobody disputes that these particular Muslims are assholes. But you can’t blame the religion itself when there are more than a billion adherents who aren’t killing anybody and don’t want to kill anybody. As Affleck says, they’re just going about their lives, trying to do their best for their kids, working, praying, screwing —- everything everyone does. If Islam is an inherently violent religion, then more than a billion of its believers don’t seem to be getting the word.
 
It’s infuriating. Do we condemn all of Christianity because of Operation Rescue? Is it ok to condemn all of Judaism because of the violent right wing settlers? Is Buddhism inherently violent because some Buddhist monks in Myanmar and killing people left and right? It’s not as if we haven’t seen exactly the same behavior among humans forever for entirely secular, avaricious, tribal, egomaniacal, nationalistic reasons. This is what we do! That this particular group of human assholes has seized upon religion for their justification for it is meaningless. It’s always something."

Digby: They Don’t Even Know They’re Bigots.

I, too, am an atheist, and I agree with everything Digby says, here.

(via wilwheaton)

All fundamentalists are disposed to violence, believing that they are justified in killing those who do not believe what they believe. American fundamentalists talk about killing gays, for example, or murdering doctors who provide abortion services — and, of course, a few fanatics actually do murder — and, lately, they talk a lot about the need to kill Muslims, new Crusades, etc. What prevents them from acting on these insane beliefs is that they have no political power, so they have no way to control the resources to put their murderous plans into action and get away with it. A stable political system keeps them in check.

Democracy would have the same effect in the middle east. Perhaps we should stop dropping bombs and try supporting democratic movements in the region.

(via wilwheaton)

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bookoisseur:

Gorgeous sunset in Prospect Heights tonight too.

bookoisseur:

Gorgeous sunset in Prospect Heights tonight too.

(via wilwheaton)

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npr:

Imagine if you could see the pen Beethoven used to write his Symphony No. 5. Or the chisel Michelangelo used to sculpt his David. Art lovers find endless fascination in the materials of artists — a pen, a brush, even a rag can become sacred objects, humanizing a work of art.

And now, at Washington, D.C.’s National Gallery of Art, visitors can see some of the materials that impressionist Mary Cassatt once used — three well-loved, large wooden boxes of pastels from distinguished Paris art supply stores. Each box is filled with stubby pieces of pastels, some worn down to half an inch, others almost untouched.

Now That’s An Artifact: See Mary Cassatt’s Pastels At The National Gallery

Photo credit: National Gallery of Art

(via wilwheaton)

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pewresearch:

Nearly three-quarters of Americans now think religion is losing influence in American life, and most who say this also see it as a bad thing. Perhaps as a consequence, a growing share of the public wants religion to play a role in U.S. politics.

pewresearch:

Nearly three-quarters of Americans now think religion is losing influence in American life, and most who say this also see it as a bad thing. Perhaps as a consequence, a growing share of the public wants religion to play a role in U.S. politics.

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pewresearch:

Hispanics were the only major racial or ethnic group  group to see its poverty rate decline and incomes rise in 2013.