Pixel Scroll 9/17/17 You Cannot Move This Pixel. It Is Still Used By A Scroll On Your Computer

(1) JUST DESERTS. Will Collins describes a little-known influence on Frank Herbert’s Dune, in “The Secret History of Dune” at LA Review of Books.

Melange, the hallucinogenic drug at the heart of Herbert’s book, acts as a prerequisite for interstellar travel and can only be obtained on one harsh, desert planet populated by tribes of warlike nomads. Even a casual political observer will recognize the parallels between the universe of Dune and the Middle East of the late 20th century. Islamic theology, mysticism, and the history of the Arab world clearly influenced Dune, but part of Herbert’s genius lay in his willingness to reach for more idiosyncratic sources of inspiration. The Sabres of Paradise (1960) served as one of those sources, a half-forgotten masterpiece of narrative history recounting a mid-19th century Islamic holy war against Russian imperialism in the Caucasus.

Lesley Blanch, the book’s author, has a memorable biography. A British travel writer of some renown, she is perhaps best known for On the Wilder Shores of Love (1954), an account of the romantic adventures of four British women in the Middle East. She was also a seasoned traveler, a keen observer of Middle Eastern politics and culture, and a passionate Russophile. She called The Sabres of Paradise “the book I was meant to do in my life,” and the novel offers the magnificent, overstuffed account of Imam Shamyl, “The Lion of Dagestan,” and his decades-long struggle against Russian encroachment.

Anyone who has obsessed over the mythology of Dune will immediately recognize the language Herbert borrowed from Blanch’s work.

(2) THE STORY THAT KEEPS ON GIVING. Pajiba’s Kayleigh Donaldson is still hot on the trail of the fake bestseller: “The ‘Handbook For Mortals’ Saga Continues As Lani Sarem Goes On The No Apologies Tour”.

Remember Handbook For Mortals, the urban fantasy novel about magic in Las Vegas that catapulted out of nowhere to take the top spot on the New York Times best-seller list? We thoroughly documented the torrid tale of Lani Sarem’s debut novel, which gamed the system through bulk purchases in order to debut at number 1 on the YA list, knocking off Angie Thomas’s mega-hit The Hate U Give. It had everything – scams, Carrot Top, Blues Traveller, Glory from Buffy, the guy from Rookie of the Year, an in development film adaptation with the author set to play the lead role, art theft, and Jasper from Twilight. It was such a fascinatingly layered scam that even the author of the worst fan-fiction of all time came forward to deny any involvement with it.

The book is no longer on the list, and clearly that’s upset Sarem and her team. While GeekNation, the near abandoned geek news website who published the novel, have been silent on the subject, Sarem has gone into PR overdrive to try and scrape together a semblance of goodwill after angering YA fans, the publishing community and John Popper himself. First, the music manager turned author wrote a piece for Billboard. You know, that bastion of publishing, where she defended her actions. Now she’s over at the Huffington Post doing the same….

(3) LOSING A LANDMARK. More coverage about the closing of a historic bookshop (the story is from July): “After 41 years, Berkeley sci-fi bookstore Dark Carnival is closing”.

“Passion or mania would certainly have played a factor,” he wrote. “One long-time friend described him as a ‘business genius,’ though I felt that, due to the nature of small bookstore business, he was actually more adept at responding to crises (financial) which regularly crept up on him.”

Juricich continued: “It was probably the best stocked, most complete store for sci-fi, fantasy, and mystery fiction in most of California, though The Other Change of Hobbit might have given it a run for its money before it, too, finally closed some years ago. I’m sad for the loss of the store to the community and no one could ever blame Jack for not having applied his intelligence and passion to its continued survival, but, much like the business of comic book retail, selling reading matter is an uphill climb.”

As Juricich points out, running a brick-and-mortar bookstore, or indeed any retail business, in the age of Amazon is notoriously tough, and it’s not the first time Rems has struggled with Dark Carnival. In December 2013, he put out a public plea to the community, writing: “No other way to say this. We need your help. To our staunch supporters: it’s thanks to all of you that we’re still here. Please, if you have any shopping to do, now and for the holidays, do some of it here… P.S.: If you’re broke, and believe me I understand, please come in anyway, say hi, hang out, I’ll give you something good to read, no charge.”

(4) NIGHT OF THE LIVING AUTHORS. Jeff VanderMeer told Facebook readers about his nightmare:

I had this horrible dream last night that I was the host of the World Fantasy Award ceremony, but this was sometime in the future when there were 1,200 categories instead of the dozen or so there are now. And the banquet hall was so huge and I had no assistant, so I had to ride a tiny tricycle (!?) to the back of the hall each time before announcing a winner….

And it gets worse/funnier after that.

(5) LIVE FROM NEW ZEALAND. Well, it was a live performance – now hear Seanan McGuire’s LexiCon concert online.

Did you miss Seanan McGuire’s concert on Saturday night – or enjoy it so much you want to listen again? We recorded it for you and it’s now on YouTube! You can hear Seanan – accompanied by local fans Daphne Lawless of Vostok Lake and Alastair Gibson.

 

(6) ABOUT THOSE SUPPORTING CHARACTERS. In From a Certain Point of View (Star Wars),  Random House Audio Publishing invites fans to “experience Star Wars: A New Hope from a different point of view.” All participating authors have donated their proceeds to charity.

On May 25, 1977, the world was introduced to Han Solo, Luke Skywalker, Princess Leia, C-3PO, R2-D2, Chewbacca, Obi-Wan Kenobi, Darth Vader, and a galaxy full of possibilities. In honor of the fortieth anniversary, more than forty contributors lend their vision to this retelling of Star Wars. Each of the forty short stories reimagines a moment from the original film, but through the eyes of a supporting character. From a Certain Point of View features contributions by bestselling authors, trendsetting artists, and treasured voices from the literary history of Star Wars:

  • Gary Whitta bridges the gap from Rogue One to A New Hope through the eyes of Captain Antilles.
  • Aunt Beru finds her voice in an intimate character study by Meg Cabot.
  • Nnedi Okorofor brings dignity and depth to a most unlikely character: the monster in the trash compactor.
  • Pablo Hidalgo provides a chilling glimpse inside the mind of Grand Moff Tarkin.
  • Pierce Brown chronicles Biggs Darklighter’s final flight during the Rebellion’s harrowing attack on the Death Star.
  • Wil Wheaton spins a poignant tale of the rebels left behind on Yavin.

Plus thirty-four more hilarious, heartbreaking, and astonishing tales from: Ben Acker • Renée Ahdieh • Tom Angleberger • Ben Blacker • Jeffrey Brown • Rae Carson • Adam Christopher • Zoraida Córdova • Delilah S. Dawson • Kelly Sue DeConnick • Paul Dini • Ian Doescher • Ashley Eckstein • Matt Fraction • Alexander Freed • Jason Fry • Kieron Gillen • Christie Golden • Claudia Gray • E. K. Johnston • Paul S. Kemp • Mur Lafferty • Ken Liu • Griffin McElroy • John Jackson Miller • Daniel José Older • Mallory Ortberg • Beth Revis • Madeleine Roux • Greg Rucka • Gary D. Schmidt • Cavan Scott • Charles Soule • Sabaa Tahir • Elizabeth Wein • Glen Weldon • Chuck Wendig

Narrated by a full cast, including: Jonathan Davis, Ashley Eckstein, Janina Gavankar, Jon Hamm, Neil Patrick Harris, January LaVoy, Saskia Maarleveld, Carol Monda, Daniel José Older, and Marc Thompson.

All participating authors have generously forgone any compensation for their stories. Instead, their proceeds will be donated to First Book—a leading nonprofit that provides new books, learning materials, and other essentials to educators and organizations serving children in need. To further celebrate the launch of this book and both companies’ longstanding relationships with First Book, Penguin Random House has donated $100,000 to First Book, and Disney/Lucasfilm has donated 100,000 children’s books—valued at $1,000,000—to support First Book and their mission of providing equal access to quality education. Over the past sixteen years, Disney and Penguin Random House combined have donated more than eighty-eight million books to First Book.

And the contributors have been hyping the book with designer pull quotes.

(7) TODAY IN HISTORY

  • September 17, 1978 — The original Battlestar Galactica premiered on television on this date.

(8) COMICS SECTION.

(9) PAY TO PLAY. Gabino Iglesias, in “Submission Fees are Classist as Fuck”, delivers an invigorating rant, but it’s just as full of holes as the cases he’s criticizing.

  1. “It’s really about gatekeeping”

If you don’t want to read bad fiction/nonfiction/poetry, don’t edit a book/magazine/blog/journal. Bad writing is to the writing game what dirty teeth are to dentistry; it will happen all the time, the only that varies is the level of awfulness. Submission guidelines, genre specifications, and word counts should help you do your precious gatekeeping. If you need to rely on charging writers $30 to enter your chapbook contest in order to keep what you think are bad writers away, know these two things: having money has absolutely nothing to do with having writing chops and your fees, not to mention your bland gatekeeping excuse, are nothing but classism in action. I’ve also heard that charging writers is just a way to “reduce the workload for overworked editors.” Get the fuck outta here with that. You’re sitting in front a computer because you want to, not working in the mines. Don’t want to edit? Don’t be an editor. There’s a ton of jobs out there that need to get done that don’t involve the arduous task of having to deal with a huge slush pile.

(10) TALK ABOUT YOUR WORK. The Kingsman “funny dinner” movie clip —

(11) OUTRAGED. Lou Antonelli issued a strong challenge to Chris Barkley’s column posted yesterday at Amazing Stories, in particular the part where he was named:

“Their views vastly contrast with The Rabid Puppies, primarily represented by Theodore Beale (aka Vox Day), John C. Wright and Lou Antonelli, they are unabashedly and enthusiastically racist in their worldview and their fiction. They believe a white male hegemony over all peoples of color, women and the LGBTQ community is the best course for the human race AND any aliens we may encounter, to put it mildly.”

Ok, I don’t know what kind of stupid bullshit rumors have wafted through Mr. Barkley’s empty cranium, but it is specious to lump me in with Vox Day and John C. Wright. Plus to claim I am “unabashedly and enthusiastically racist” in my worldview is simply libelous. I dare this hatemonger to point to anything I have ever said or did that was racist – because I’m not. As the first generation non-white child of an illegal immigrant, I have always felt revulsion towards ethnic and racial prejudice – I have been on the receiving end, believe me….

…Just to make my position on racism clear, I’m a Christian. God made man – all men: White, Black, Brown, Yellow, Red, whatever. A racist is God-defiant. He’s putting himself above God by saying God made a mistake. A racist does the Devil’s work.

(12) DANIEL JOSE OLDER NOVEL REVIEWED. Amal El-Mohtar reviews Older’s Shadowhouse Fall for NPR: “In ‘Shadowhouse Fall,’ Magical Threats Map Real-World Peril”.

Everything I loved about Shadowshaper is found in Shadowhouse Fall, but sharper and fiercer, pushed harder and farther. The love and loyalty Sierra and her friends feel for each other is all the more affecting for being forged in fire: They walk through metal detectors into school every morning, endure and resist casual assaults on their personhood and bodies in relentless routine. As with Shadowshaper, the parts I loved best were the characters, the exuberance of these people’s voices, the intimacy and honesty of their interactions. I loved seeing more of Sierra’s relationship with her best friend Bennie, more of Izzy and Tee’s romance, more of Juan and Pulpo’s devotion to each other. All of these relationships are complex and full of friction, and the sparks they give off illuminate important facets of the story.

(13) DOESN’T PASS GAS. A new type of space drive? “Will This ‘Impossible’ Motor Take People to Other Planets?”

When NASA one day sends humans to Mars, the journey could take six to nine months each way. But there’s a highly-experimental device being developed that could help get us there in less than half that time — if it really works.

A small lab at NASA is creating a motor to propel ships through space much faster than today’s conventional rockets can. Decades from now, a trip to Mars might take mere weeks, without burning any fuel. The only problem? The motor seems to violate the laws of physics.

To power a spacecraft, a propellant is ejected out of the rocket’s end, because you can’t accelerate forward without pushing back against something. But NASA’s alternative gadget, called an EM drive, would generate thrust without the need to belch exhaust. And dropping the weight from fuel could make ships much lighter and space travel more efficient.

(14) SPACE SNAPPERS. The BBC has “In pictures: Astronomy Photographer of the Year 2017”, with the winning picture and many runners-up:

The winning images from this year’s competition have now been announced, with Artem Mironov’s vibrant clouds of dust and gas in the Rho Ophiuchi Cloud Complex scooping first place.

(15) IG NOBELS. SJW Credentials studied: “Ig Nobels Awarded For Research Into Big Ears, Feline Fluidity”.

Can a cat be both a liquid and a solid? Does contact with a crocodile influence a person’s willingness to gamble? And do old men really have big ears?

Those are just a few of the questions studied by scientists who received Ig Nobel Prizes at Harvard University on Thursday, at the less-than-prestigious ceremony put on by the otherwise-august institution for the past 27 years.

“Each winner has done something that makes people laugh, then think,” said Marc Abrahams, who founded the awards in 1991 and writes for the decidedly non-peer-reviewed journal Annals of Improbable Research.

The complete list of winners is available from Improbable.com.

(16) MAKES THEM WONDER. The Columbian believes “Jenkins the future of DC movies, but not the way you think”.

Jenkins will lead WB/DC into a future where story comes first, not multimovie connectivity. Yes, the potential of “Justice League” movies is exciting, but every single DC film doesn’t have to be a two-hour commercial for the super-team’s gathering. “Wonder Woman” taking place in the past — far away from Batman, Superman, Doomsday and horrible Daily Planet story-budget meetings (why is Clark Kent going from the city beat to covering football?) — was the best thing that could have happened to DC. It showed that singular stories and a strong supporting cast are more important than movie-universe building.

Jenkins also showed the power of having DC Entertainment president Geoff Johns, formerly one of DC Comics’ top comic-book writers who now spends most of his time on the movies, at her side. As the new president, “Wonder Woman” was the first DCEU movie where Johns could provide his superhero storytelling skills in a more authoritative way.

(17) VIDEO OF THE DAY. “Auto Nom” by Foam Studio is a silly story about all the fun a yellow Mercedes-Benz has in the city.

[Thanks to Rich Lynch, Carl Slaughter, Chip Hitchcock, Cat Eldridge, JJ, Hampus Eckerman, Martin Morse Wooster, ULTRAGOTHA, and John King Tarpinian for some of these stories. Title credit goes to File 770 contributing editor of the day Peer.]

71 thoughts on “Pixel Scroll 9/17/17 You Cannot Move This Pixel. It Is Still Used By A Scroll On Your Computer

  1. (2) THE STORY THAT KEEPS ON GIVING.
    “But I honestly believe the steps I took are well within the rules.”
    I think it’s more correct to say that it wasn’t technically against the rules; a distinct but important difference. It comes across a lot like the Sad Puppy justifications for gaming the Hugos. Just because it’s not against the rules, doesn’t make it right.
    (6) ABOUT THOSE SUPPORTING CHARACTERS.
    Nnedi Okorofor brings dignity and depth -> Nnedi Okorafor

  2. 11) Wether italians are white or not depends on place and time. Plenty where not white in Sweden, 40 years ago. There is no doubt that Antonelli is white now, though.

    Otherwise, I agree, I reacted to the same thing in the original article. I have not seen any racism from Antonelli, I have not seen any reason to lump Antonelli together with the rabids rather than the sads, and Antonelli was actually from the first one of those that said that it was wrong done by the sads(!) before he became radicalized and his temper and lunatic attack on Gerrold became the new norm of the day.

  3. (12) MALKA OLDER NOVEL REVIEWED. Amal El-Mohtar reviews Older’s Shadowhouse Fall for NPR

    I think you mean “Daniel José Older”.

  4. (13) Unless I’m missing something, this is an article from 4 months ago about an idea that got tons of press in the fall of 2016 and hasn’t had any experimental results since then.

  5. I got to hang out with Ms. Okorafor today at Hawaiicon without having an unseemly fangirl meltdown and report she is awesome and I can’t wait to read about her dianoga.

    There were a couple books in the pre-TFA extended universe that I really enjoyed, tales from Jabba’s palace and from the cantina, with each action figure in the scene getting their own 5000 words of fame.

  6. Mike Glyer: I’m at a loss. Antonelli wrote in an entry about his family that both his parents were Italians from Italy.

    I remembered that, which is why I was so mystified at his claiming to be non-white. 🙄

    While Antonelli has a huge anger management problem, a complete lack of comprehension as to what constitutes acceptable human behavior, and an utter unwillingness to accept any personal responsibility for any of his own incredibly reprehensible behavior or for the consequences of his willing choice to be part of the Puppy cheating, I will say that I do not remember him ever having said anything racist.

    I guess that’s what you would call “damning with faint praise”. 😐

  7. Hampus Eckerman: Wether italians are white or not depends on place and time. Plenty where not white in Sweden, 40 years ago.

    According to this scholar, in the U.S.:

    Sorry, but the Irish were always ‘white’ (and so were Italians, Jews and so on)

    many people can’t conceive of the idea that Irish, Italian, Polish, Slovak, Jewish, Greek and other immigrants to the United States could have faced a tremendous amount of discrimination from the Northeastern European establishment and yet still have been considered white. Nor do folks seem to understand that “ethnic” whites could have been considered to be white, but also been subject to racism, because people believed that there were subraces within the white category.

  8. I’m impressed by the economics Ignobel. Science! Crocodiles!

    To cut CUL some slack, the further south in Italy one gets, the more North African heritage there is.. I have no idea about his specific ancestry. And while he’s appeared to be a git plenty of times, I’ve not really noticed him being a racist git.

  9. “It’s scroll outside, no kind of pixelsphere. I’m all alone, more or less. Let me file, far away from here” (I probably should apologise for butchering the Red Dwarf theme song…)

  10. So having read Burning Bright and been impressed this weekend, I went back to the shelves and found another one that had washed up over the years, Queen City Jazz, by Kathleen Ann Goonan, and at the one-third mark, I am again mightily impressed. This feels an awful lot like someone wrote it for a sweet spot located somewhere between me and the kid’s mom. Goonan likes a lot of the same musicians and writers I like, while the coming-of-age aspect of it will appeal to her. This one will head to her house once I’m done with it. It’d be nice for us to have a new book to talk about.

    I’ve been in a comfort-reading state the last little while–like a few years, or so it feels–and getting some new authors down me feels pretty good.

  11. 1) Yeah, I saw that yesterday, too. I had never heard of this book, and it just feeds on to the idea of reading widely to feed the author brain.

    @ita @Mike Only up to a year ago, I had no idea the Olders were siblings, just figured they were about as related as Laura Anne Gilman and Carolyn Ives Gilman. But nope, that’s one talented pair of writer siblings.

  12. Am I mistaken in thinking that Sarah Hoyt has also claimed non-white heritage? In her case, it was based on Spanish or Portuguese ancestry, I believe (can’t remember which).

  13. (13) is another example of Betteridge’s Law of Headlines: “Any headline that ends in a question mark can be answered by the word no.”

  14. I went to college (with substantial scholarship aid) at a very prestigious school, where I had the joy of being classmate with several members of the British nobility — at least two heirs to titles, others with parents holding titles. Despite being half-Irish, I was named for a British great-grandfather, so they viewed me as one of their own. Several times they WASPlained to me that Irish folks weren’t “really” white, that despite their pale skin they descended from an entirely different race than the British and the Nordo-Germanics. I also read some charming, pre WWII economics textbooks in the college library which, in discussing the labor force, distinguished between the highly productive whites and the generally less industrious Mediterranean, Slavic, and Gaelic people. (Them Scotch Gaels were damned thrifty, though). It takes a certain kind of person to tell an Irishman that he’s always been a member of a privileged race. That kind of person is ignorant of history.

  15. @ Leslie C:

    IIRC, Sarah Hoyt was born (and spent a fair few years) in Portugal. I don’t recall if she has asserted “non-white”, but has certainly asserted “non-US”. I also have a vague recollection that the Portugese background has been cited as a source of fear of rampant left-ism, since this apparently causes societal breakdown.

  16. I will say that I do not remember him ever having said anything racist.

    He has been part of the Superversive podcast, so it seems he’s been willing to hang around a lot with JCW, despite his apparent anger over being “lumped in with him”. I haven’t bothered to listed to more than a few snippets of the podcast (which was enough to convince me it was a complete shitshow), but that connection may have been what Barkley was thinking of.

  17. 9) I’m trying to find the holes, but honestly, there aren’t that many of them. I’ve always considered “pay to submit” to be grossly unprofessional. I will, from time to time, be willing to submit to/work for non-paying venues, but the only I time I do pay-to-play is if it also includes a subscription* to the publication and does not exceed the regular subscription price (it’s a common tactic here to run a pay-to-play contest with a large-ish cash prize where the fee is cheaper than an annual subscription, but includes a subscription to all contestants… it happens because up here keeping some publications alive can often come down to grant money that’s tied to subscription numbers; and not every publication is lucky enough to be in even that situation).

    *And I actually want the subscription.

  18. One Score and nineteen years ago, our Founder brought forth, upon this internet, a new Pixel Scroll, conceived in fandom, and dedicated to the proposition that “all links are created equal”.

    Burn the land and boil the sea, You can’t take the Scroll from me.

    Man walks down the street in a Scroll like that, you know he’s not afraid of anything….

  19. Reading: I’m currently about half way through K.J. Parker’s The Company, which is just as full of bitter people making poor decisions, and exactingly precise descriptions of weaponry and tactics and animal husbandry, as you’d expect.

  20. A pixel walks into a bar and orders a fifth, and the barman says “Hey, why the long scroll?”.

  21. Handbook for Mortals has a (tenuous) connection to Glory and Zander and Spike (oh my!)

    EM Drives: They may not use propellant (if it is a real effect and not measurement error) but they would require massive amounts of electricity to move a manned ship to Mars in 6 months. Orders of magnitude more electricity than can be provided by solar panels or RTGs. So you would need some way of generating all that electricity, either with a nuclear reactor (and all the complexity and protective shielding involved) plus turbines to turn the heat into electricity or coal, oil, or natural gas to burn to turn those turbines to generate electricity. In the end, you would probably end up with something much more massive and expensive than if you had just used rocket fuel. (Once, to answer a question about using an EM Drive to travel to Alpha Centauri within 100 years, I did a calculation. Not knowing the mass of a manned interstellar ship, I used the mass of the ISS (which is surely far less than the necessary mass for a one century voyage) and at the efficiency of the tested current experimental EM Drives, that interstellar ship would require 4.2 gigawatts of electricity, or more than the output of the largest nuclear power plant in the US.)

    Lou Antonelli–I don’t recall anything racist from him in the kerfuffle. Jerk behavior, yes, but no racism. (I do recall a dredging up of an instance of where he referred to his dogs as Canine-Americans, but I think that this was utterly innocuous and that Nisi Shawl was the pathetic idiot in that case.)

  22. IIRC, Sarah Hoyt was born (and spent a fair few years) in Portugal. I don’t recall if she has asserted “non-white”, but has certainly asserted “non-US”.

    Sarah has made the claim that being from Portugal makes her Hispanic or Latina, probably because when she first came to America, (racist) people told her that she was, and she accepted that.

    In truth, Portuguese (and Americans of Portuguese descent) are neither Hispanic nor Latina, and while it’s a semantic hill I sometimes feel like dying on, I’m kind of numb to it in her case as long as the puppies aren’t holding her up as “look at our diversity”.

  23. @Niall McAuley

    (13) is another example of Betteridge’s Law of Headlines: “Any headline that ends in a question mark can be answered by the word no.”

    Not really. Headline: “What Is It Like to Be Buried Alive?” Lots of questions can’t be answered with yes or no.

    The rule I learned was that unless you have a really dramatic headline like that one, if it ends with a question mark it tempts the reader to answer “who cares?” and move on. But “no” clearly doesn’t always work. (Linguists would say that it only works with “polar questions.”)

  24. JJ, no matter how often I click on your no doubt excellent link, it’s a Washington post page that has nothing on it but links to sponsored stories. I’m pretty sure those aren’t what you mean us to read.

    So, doing the best I can with your comment, I find this:
    The Teen Who Exposed a Professor’s Myth

    Let’s hope that works…

    You’re also missing the rather important and I would have thought obvious fact that “not white” doesn’t exclusively mean “black.”

    Back soon, hopefully within the edit window, but no promises.

  25. Darren Garrison writes about an EM drive: they would require massive amounts of electricity to move a manned ship to Mars in 6 months. Orders of magnitude more electricity than can be provided by solar panels or RTGs

    The EM drive violates Newton’s Laws and outperforms a photon drive, so it is not hard to make one into a perpetual motion infinite free energy generator. Then you can use electricity from your EM powered generator to power the ship’s EM drive with the excess used to power all of human civilization..

  26. Oops. Almost but not quite.

    However, on that last point:

    The Simian Negroid Irish as Depicted in English and American Cartoons

    There’s a lot more, but I’m doing this on my phone.

    I’m American, and my family is Sicilian, Irish, and French-Canadian. I’m a librarian, and my BA is in history. I’m also sixty, and a late child of late children who were happy to talk about our family history. My grandparents had direct, personal experience of shit it is now fashionable to say didn’t happen, and I have the skills to look for the documentation.

    There actually were some Irish slaves in the Americas, though in trivial numbers compared to both the absolute numbers of black slaves, and the total Irish migration to the Americas. It was never, unlike black slavery in the Americas, anything that could remotely be called systematic or in any meaningful way be compared to the African experience in the Americas.

    And that’s the big divide between the African experience in America, and the experience of white ethnics.

    Not that the white ethnics weren’t for a long time regarded little differently than blacks, but that after enough generations, another group of ethnics would displace them from the bottom position and push them up the ladder.

  27. Lou Antonelli–I don’t recall anything racist from him in the kerfuffle. Jerk behavior, yes, but no racism. (I do recall a dredging up of an instance of where he referred to his dogs as Canine-Americans, but I think that this was utterly innocuous and that Nisi Shawl was the pathetic idiot in that case.)

    Many dog people would cheerfully hold that this is one of the few things on which Antonelli is not wrong.

  28. JJ, no matter how often I click on your no doubt excellent link, it’s a Washington post page that has nothing on it but links to sponsored stories.

    That’s odd, when I click on the link it goes directly to a Washington Post article titled Sorry, but the Irish were always ‘white’ (and so were Italians, Jews and so on) by George Mason law professor David Bernstein.

  29. (13) A very recent report from the Naval Research Laboratory says that they’re going to do a very thorough test of this EM Drive (aka “reactionless drive” aka “field drive”) and let everyone know what they find.

    There do exist some ways to modify General Relativity to make the physics of this thing work without (for example) enabling perpetual motion machines. Some of those imply that thrust is linear with Q, so a superconducting version might have substantial thrust.

    This Reddit thread has interesting discussion.

    Personally, I expect the only interesting thing that will come from this will be a clear explanation of the error the Eagleworks people made in their experiments. However, a positive result from the NRL people would change things dramatically.

  30. Lis Carey on September 18, 2017 at 8:58 am said:
    Niece-by-marriage is descended from Irish laborers in mid-19th century Portsmouth, VA – I’m not sure when they came over, but most seem to have arrived in the 1840s. They were about one step, maybe two, above blacks in the social scale. Several died in the big yellow-fever epidemic of 1855, and the newspaper coverage of the deaths in that part of the city was minimal (I was able to find some information, but not much). They didn’t matter to the Important People: they were Irish and Catholic.

  31. This year’s Longlist Anthology is up on Kickstarter.

    Current TOC is:

    Short Stories (base goal)

    “Lullaby for a Lost World” by Aliette de Bodard
    “A Salvaging of Ghosts” by Aliette de Bodard
    “Ye Highlands and Ye Lowlands” by Seanan McGuire
    “Things With Beards” by Sam J. Miller
    “Red in Tooth and Cog” by Cat Rambo
    “Terminal” by Lavie Tidhar
    “Razorback” by Ursula Vernon
    “Welcome to the Medical Clinic at the Interplanetary Relay Station | Hours Since the Last Patient Death: 0” by Caroline M. Yoachim

    Novelettes (stretch goal at $2900)

    “A Dead Djinn in Cairo” by P. Djèlí Clark
    “Red as Blood and White as Bone” by Theodora Goss
    “The Venus Effect” by Joseph Allen Hill
    “Foxfire, Foxfire” by Yoon Ha Lee
    “The Visitor From Taured” by Ian R. MacLeod
    “Sooner or Later, Everything Falls Into the Sea” by Sarah Pinsker
    “Blood Grains Speak Through Memories” by Jason Sanford

    Novellas (stretch goal at $4000)

    “Runtime” by S.B. Divya
    “Chimera” by Gu Shi, translated by S. Qiouyi Lu and Ken Liu
    “Forest of Memory” by Mary Robinette

  32. @Marshall Ryan Maresca

    Sarah has made the claim that being from Portugal makes her Hispanic or Latina, probably because when she first came to America, (racist) people told her that she was, and she accepted that.

    In truth, Portuguese (and Americans of Portuguese descent) are neither Hispanic nor Latina

    I came up with this rebuttal a few weeks ago when somebody else made the claim about Hoyt supposedly being Hispanic. 99% of Portuguese immigrants do NOT identify as Hispanic on the US Census:

    “For the most part, people who trace their ancestry to these countries do not self-identify as Hispanic when they fill out their Census forms. Only about 4% of immigrants from Brazil do so, as do just 1% of immigrants from Portugal or the Philippines.”

    http://www.pewhispanic.org/2009/05/28/whos-hispanic/
    http://www.allinportuguese.com/blog/2013/02/25/are-portuguese-and-brazilians-hispanic/

  33. @Darren Garrison:

    Not knowing the mass of a manned interstellar ship, I used the mass of the ISS (which is surely far less than the necessary mass for a one century voyage) and at the efficiency of the tested current experimental EM Drives, that interstellar ship would require 4.2 gigawatts of electricity, or more than the output of the largest nuclear power plant in the US.)

    For comparison, that’s enough power to send a DeLorean on 3.75 trips through time!

    P.S. “You know that new Scroll you’re looking for? Well, Pixel to this!”

  34. @Aaron–

    That’s odd, when I click on the link it goes directly to a Washington Post article titled Sorry, but the Irish were always ‘white’ (and so were Italians, Jews and so on) by George Mason law professor David Bernstein.

    After repeated efforts, kept producing the same useless non-results for me. After a certain point, doing the same thing over and over doesn’t seem sensible.

    @P. J. Evans–

    Niece-by-marriage is descended from Irish laborers in mid-19th century Portsmouth, VA – I’m not sure when they came over, but most seem to have arrived in the 1840s. They were about one step, maybe two, above blacks in the social scale. Several died in the big yellow-fever epidemic of 1855, and the newspaper coverage of the deaths in that part of the city was minimal (I was able to find some information, but not much). They didn’t matter to the Important People: they were Irish and Catholic.

    Yep, that seems about right. ?

  35. @Mark Quatrain–

    It takes a certain kind of person to tell an Irishman that he’s always been a member of a privileged race. That kind of person is ignorant of history.

    Again, sadly, yes. I don’t how many people remember Fr. Andrew Greeley anymore, but he had Stories about his experiences going through customs when he visited the UK. Because Irish-American, must be an IRA supporter, right?

  36. I just took a look and it’s not a very good column. It’s making no real effort to engage with the literature it’s critiquing, and suffers from a great deal of selection bias. More than anything else, there’s no real effort to engage with the massive instability within the category of race. I’d recommend Roediger’s Working Towards Whiteness on the topic, which looks at the first half of the twentieth century or even Stephen Jay Gould’s The Mismeasure of Man, which gets into the often convoluted structures of racial categorization, while working through his critique of hereditarian assumptions about intelligence.

    To go back to the article, the author ignores the eugenic dimensions of immigration restrictions on southern and eastern europeans, and cherry picks moments of acceptance, etc. It really remarkably minimizes the history of anti-Semitism as well. At the same time, as Roediger and many others have pointed out, many of the forms of de jure racism were not in existence for these groups, so it would also be a mistake to slip into an unthinking equivalence as well. I don’t want to give the impression that I’m signing onto a ‘we, too suffered’ narrative, which is pure nonsense, and ignores the way those groups embraced white supremacy as a ‘the price of the ticket’ to use the phrase of James Baldwin.

    (Theodore Allen’s The Invention of the White Race is also interesting, as it follows colonized Scots become colonizers in Ireland and both groups becoming colonizers. It’s a point that is also curiously identified by Robert Louis Stevenson in Kidnapped.)

  37. Someone on rpg.net turned me on to James Alan Gardner’s League of Peoples series; the first boo, Expendable, is wonderful.

    Working my way through Robert Sawyer’s Star Trek pastiche Starplex. Enjoying it so far!

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