think on this.

Jul 22

ugh lawyer dude who shares an office with my company just came in to complain about people who wanted help with medicaid planning because that means they’re poor and there’s no money in them and they’re probably trying to do something shady to make the government have to take care of them. i replied how we often had to help with medicaid planning when people got settlement payments for police brutality cases or hospital malpractice cases or other situations where they were being compensated for someone having done them significant wrong, and we had to help spend down the settlement in approved exempted ways so it wouldn’t disqualify them for ongoing medicaid. (things like pre-paying rent, saving for education, or in one memorable case, buying a huge freezer and a whole lot of meat for future food supply.) he replied that in those cases, the people should just get smaller settlements. “then everyone wins!”


George Fox previously won exemption to Title IX so it could discriminate against divorced or unwed parents @insidehighered -

Many advocates for gay and transgender students were surprised and angered when they learned that U.S. Education Department had granted George Fox University an exemption from parts of Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972. The exemption will permit George Fox to deny a transgender student the right to live in male student housing. George Fox said, and the Education Department accepted, that its Quaker religious beliefs would be violated by being forced to let the transgender student live in a way that affirms his gender identity.

This is not the first time George Fox has sought and received exemptions from Title IX. And the previous exemption (no longer in place) suggests that policies that the university once said were based on Scripture and could not be changed could in fact be changed.

In 1985, the Education Department said that because of its religious views, George Fox could — in what would otherwise have been a violation of Title IX — decline to enroll or hire divorced individuals or the parents of out-of-wedlock children. Details are not available on Education Department deliberations in the case, but it apparently took years for the department to make a decision; George Fox requested the exemption in 1976.

plan for today

A $650 Million Donation for Psychiatric Research - -

Late on Monday, the Broad Institute, a biomedical research center, announced a $650 million donation for psychiatric research from the Stanley Family Foundation — one of the largest private gifts ever for scientific research.

It comes at a time when basic research into mental illness is sputtering, and many drug makers have all but abandoned the search for new treatments. Despite decades of costly research, experts have learned virtually nothing about the causes of psychiatric disorders and have developed no truly novel drug treatments in more than a quarter century.

Broad Institute officials hope that Mr. Stanley’s donation will change that, and they timed their announcement to coincide with the publication of the largest analysis to date on the genetics of schizophrenia. The analysis, reported by the journal Nature on Monday, identified more than 100 regions of DNA associated with the disease. Many of them contain genes involved in just a few biological functions, like pumping calcium into neurons, that could help guide the search for treatments.

Jul 21

FAFSAs With Decimal Place Error Will Be Reprocessed @insidehighered -

The U.S. Department of Education said Friday that it will automatically reprocess the federal financial aid applications of tens of thousands of students whose aid eligibility was likely reduced because of a decimal place error. The problem came to light this month after some students and families filling out the online Free Application for Federal Student Aid, known as the FAFSA, incorrectly entered both dollars and cents into a box that was supposed to accept only whole-dollar values.
As a result, the agency said, the government’s computer system interpreted a student reporting an income of $5,000.19 as having an income of $500,019, which would likely reduce that student’s eligibility for need-based grants and loans.

vacation pros:
lots and lots of excellent hiking
amazing mountain views
so very many wildflowers
hot springs
delicious dinners
gigantic aspen groves quaking in the breeze
wading in rivers and skipping stones
good time with family
vacation cons:
horse fly bites
exhaustion and behind on sleep
lots of negotiated decisionmaking
bereft at not being outside in nature right now

vacation pros:

vacation cons:

Reports: Many AIDS Researchers on Downed Plane -

Australian newspapers are reporting that the Malaysian Airlines flight that was shot down Thursday had many passengers who were AIDS researchers or public health workers headed to the 20th International AIDS Conference, which convenes Sunday in Melbourne, Australia. The International AIDS Society, the sponsor of the meeting, did not confirm how many people headed to the conference were on the flight.

Jul 16

“[F]or most, systemic delay has made their execution so unlikely that the death sentence carefully and deliberately imposed by the jury has been quietly transformed into one no rational jury or legislature could ever impose: life in prison, with the remote possibility of death,” wrote Federal Judge Cormac J. Carney of death row inmates in California. “As for the random few for whom execution does become a reality, they will have languished for so long on Death Row that their execution will serve no retributive or deterrent purpose and will be arbitrary.” — California judge strikes down death penalty | MSNBC

Same sex parents and adopted children -

The largest-ever study of same-sex parents found their children turn out healthier and happier than the general population. A new study of 315 same-sex parents and 500 children in Australia found that, after correcting for socioeconomic factors, their children fared well on several measures, including asthma, dental care, behavioral issues, learning, sleep, and speech. Perceived stigmas were associated with worse scores for physical activity, mental health, family cohesion, and emotional outcomes. The stigmas, however, were not prevalent enough to negatively tilt the children’s outcomes in a comparison to outcomes across the general population.

U. Miami postdoc wants to bring science to the masses -

Robert Seigel is more interested in fixing what he calls the “disconnect” between science and society than diagnosing it. His first big push has been creating a website called Publiscize. It’s a platform that helps scientists break down and promote their published research for a lay audience – either readers on their own or college and university communications department staffers who might not otherwise be aware of the work taking place on their campuses.
“I didn’t feel quite satisfied as a scientist with how disconnected I was with the rest of the world,” said Seigel. “So I started working on this about seven or eight months ago, formulating my thoughts and getting everything together. We recently launched and we’re really starting to move this along.”
Publiscize has an intuitive interface that allows users to create accounts either as scientists, organizations, or “enthusiasts” with access to daily email alerts about new content. Seigel verifies the identities of scientists based on their published research before approving them to post content. To post a “scinopsis,” or scientific synopsis of their peer-reviewed research (accepted or published only – Seigel says he’s not interested in the journal business), scientists fill out a form designed to make work accessible. They start with a title and 300-character summary or “lede” before moving on to a short synopsis.
Several principles guide scientists through the process: write in terms that anyone in your family can understand, think carefully about first- versus third-person narration (one brings the reader in; the other smacks of objectivity), and put the bottom line up front. An accompanying graphic from a 2011 Physics Today article by Richard Somerville and Susan Hassol about communicating climate change acknowledges that this process is different from the way academics usually write. Instead of declaring their main point in the opening paragraphs, they say, academics tend to write in a more linear manner, starting with background.

Jul 15

came home with lots and lots to do and big plans of doing it.

instead, sat on the couch to finish reading a novel.

this certainly isn’t the only indicator of interest (and worth noting that the graph messes with the axes, so it’s still at 13.4%, not 1%), but wow, what a dramatic shift in trends. (via Vox)

this certainly isn’t the only indicator of interest (and worth noting that the graph messes with the axes, so it’s still at 13.4%, not 1%), but wow, what a dramatic shift in trends. (via Vox)

i am supposed to be researching mapping software alternatives to ArcGIS which costs all of the money, and i just spent a while banging my head against the wall to figure out how to make a map in cartoDB and i finally got it to work - so my reward is that i get to try to figure out how to replicate that same map using R.

someone please come by and hit me in the head with something heavy, is my point.

shinyloud 48 ~ 108mbdirect download here
laura welsh - break the fall
M0 - walk this way
lowell - i love you money
mausi - my friend has a swimming pool
teddybears - sunshine
fever high - all work
french horn rebellion - swing into it
la roux - tropical chancer
hood internet - sock it 2 summer
usher - she came to give it to you
bleachers - rollercoaster
first aid kit - stay gold
lana del rey - west coast
the weeknd - often
grimes - go
ASTR - part of me
FKA twigs - two weeks
zella day - east of eden
milky chance - stolen dance
chet faker - 1998

shinyloud 48 ~ 108mb
direct download here

  1. laura welsh - break the fall
  2. M0 - walk this way
  3. lowell - i love you money
  4. mausi - my friend has a swimming pool
  5. teddybears - sunshine
  6. fever high - all work
  7. french horn rebellion - swing into it
  8. la roux - tropical chancer
  9. hood internet - sock it 2 summer
  10. usher - she came to give it to you
  11. bleachers - rollercoaster
  12. first aid kit - stay gold
  13. lana del rey - west coast
  14. the weeknd - often
  15. grimes - go
  16. ASTR - part of me
  17. FKA twigs - two weeks
  18. zella day - east of eden
  19. milky chance - stolen dance
  20. chet faker - 1998

so jose antonio vargas has been detained at a border checkpoint after he went to a vigil in mcallen, texas. and i am having feelings about it. a lot of the twitter talk has focused on his contribution to the country and his pulitzer prize and how he has made this country better. and that may all be true, but focusing on that as the reason he should not be detained and his status shouldn’t be a problem makes me uncomfortable. he went there to speak on behalf of kids who have been sent to the US to avoid gangs and drugs and violence and death in their home countries, who are too young and too scared and too alone to have made any major contributions to the country. i’m wary that the rhetoric around vargas’ rights may come as the expense of arguments that would support these children. let’s not pit these people against each other.