rydra_wong: Doonesbury, Watergate, two congressmen: "If only he'd knock over a bank or something ..." "By George, we'd have him them!" (bank -- watergate)
[personal profile] rydra_wong
So Sean Spicer's resigned (we all knew it was coming), Sessions discussed the Trump campaign and policy issues with Kisylak in 2016, and Trump looks like he's revving up to fire Mueller and Sessions and then pardon himself and his family for everything they've done ever.

And all I can focus on is this story that Sean Spicer stole a mini-fridge from junior White House staffers.

Rec: The Turnaround podcast

Jul. 21st, 2017 10:59 am
semielliptical: road beside a field (travel)
[personal profile] semielliptical
 I’ve been listening to a new, limited-run podcast, The Turnaround, in which Jesse Thorn interviews well-known interviewers about interviewing. It’s not a topic I’ve given special attention to before, other than getting annoyed when I think someone is doing a bad job interviewing. But I spend a lot of time listening to podcasts and NPR shows that include interviews, so I have really enjoyed this opportunity to think about how interviews contribute to news and stories and how they are produced and edited. While there are some themes that have come up in most interviews, such as the importance of listening, the guests also have some widely different approaches to other key parts of interviewing, such as how they prepare.
 
I haven’t heard all of the available programs yet, but I can recommend:
 
Audie Cornish, host of NPR’s All Things Considered, discussing interviewing in the context of daily news.  
 
Brooke Gladstone, of On The Media, (essential weekly listening, imo) on the more critical, in-depth interviewing style of this program.
 
And then, it's interesting to contrast those interviews with two people who usually do much more lengthy, free-form interviews:
 
Susan Orlean, who writes books and long-form magazine pieces, and speaks thoughtfully about how she enters different communities and approaches interviewing "regular" people.

Errol Morris, the documentary filmmaker. He described liking to get interviewees to talk for extended lengths of time, and that is also his approach to being interviewed - long-winded and rambling, but still interesting.

If it weren't for podcasts like this, I would probably do much less housework. Anyone have recommendations for good listening? 
rydra_wong: Doonesbury, Watergate, two congressmen: "If only he'd knock over a bank or something ..." "By George, we'd have him them!" (bank -- watergate)
[personal profile] rydra_wong
The Guardian: Trump had undisclosed second meeting with Putin, White House confirms

New York Times: Trump and Putin Held a Second, Undisclosed, Private Conversation

Note: it was "private" as in "out of earshot of anyone except Putin's translator" and "not mentioned to the public". It was not private as in "it was held in view of most of the other G20 leaders OMFG ARE YOU KIDDING ME".

Just to make the whole thing even stupider (on Buttercup's part) and more of a blatant power play (on Putin's).

[tumblr.com profile] plaidadder breaks this shit down: A Million Encores: Putin And our Playable President

And spells out one point in particular:

Why do we know about this? Because some of the European G-20 leaders were so concerned about this that they called their global risk consultant to get his opinion on it. That’s what Ian Bremmer does: he assesses global political risk for people who want to use it to make investment decisions.

So yeah, got scurvy again

Jul. 15th, 2017 09:08 pm
rydra_wong: Text: "Your body is a battleground" over photo of 19th-C strongwoman. (body -- battleground)
[personal profile] rydra_wong
For the sake of pedantic clarity: much as I like saying that, I don't actually have scurvy -- quite.

I do presently have plasma vitamin C levels which (Google tells me) would qualify me for a scurvy diagnosis if I was showing any particular symptoms. Which I'm not, beyond my usual levels of fatigue and physical crud (there's stuff -- flare-up of an old injury, etc. -- which, with hindsight I could construe as maybe related somehow, but basically I'm very well, and said stuff would not have made me suspect that anything was wrong). Possibly I'd get symptoms if I let the deficiency run on longer, but that's an experiment I am disinclined to try.

N.B.: this is on an intake of fruit and veg which should easily supply far more than the RDA from diet alone, plus supplementation of a gramme of vitamin C a day.

Which is absurd mega-dose levels.

It used to be two grammes, as that's what it took to drag my blood levels back into the normal range when this showed up on test results before; this past year I suggested tapering down to half-as-ridiculous and monitoring my blood levels to see if they stayed okay. Which they did, at least until last autumn.

Then I was getting a blood test for something else completely, my GP suggested checking my vitamin C levels, and boom, they have fallen through the floor again.

So now, back to double-ridiculous doses and waiting to re-test.

My medical Google-fu is usually pretty good, but it's failed me so far on this. I've asked my doctor to consult colleagues and see if I should be referred to a relevant consultant or WTF, on the basis that it's such a bizarre and extreme test result we should probably see if there's an underlying reason that could or should be treated (or, for example, something which might cause the test to give inaccurate results).

Anyway, I thought I'd lob it to the hive mind in case anyone's heard of a similar case or know of something that could cause this, because I am so baffled. And I realize that my belief that bizarre medical things should happen because of reasons has been shown to be delusional before, but still.

... maybe I have a tapeworm that consumes nothing but vitamin C.

This is a trope, right?

Jul. 13th, 2017 10:12 am
rydra_wong: Doonesbury, Watergate, two congressmen: "If only he'd knock over a bank or something ..." "By George, we'd have him them!" (bank -- watergate)
[personal profile] rydra_wong
Where someone gets flustered into confessing more than they were actually accused of?

It has to be a trope, but a dive into TV Tropes has failed me. It's not quite Accidental Public Confession -- something more specific than that.

I mean, as I understand it, the NYT had sources who described a message they had seen in which "Skittles" Jr. was told that the information he was hoping to get was from Russia.

The e-mails he Tweeted show that he he was explicitly told he was going to get "high level and sensitive information" as "part of Russia and its government’s support for Mr. Trump."

From the WaPo: The email exchange showed clearly that Trump Jr. understood he was taking the meeting as a way of channeling information directly from the government of a nation hostile to the United States to his father’s campaign.

Here is a journalist who was chasing this story for a year. Here is the sound of his head exploding.

I'm still boggling that they wrote it in an e-mail, "part of Russia and its government support for Mr. Trump", come to the meeting so we can provide "very high level and sensitive information", maybe I've watched too much spy tv but I vaguely thought there'd be some sort of subterfuge, some sort of nudge-and-wink, if not actual covert communication, but LOLNOPE.

[tumblr.com profile] sashayed's commentary: #SUBJECT: wanna come 2 treason meeting #FROM: collusion at kremlin dot ru

(Like [tumblr.com profile] plaidadder, I have wondered if it's so absurdly blatant on purpose, as part of a Russian intelligence scheme of some kind. Or maybe everyone's just that fucking stupid.)

And then Skittles forwarded the whole e-mail chain to Kushner and Manafort at their work e-mail addresses.

Also, it's been suggested that talking about "adoptions" is basically standard code for talking about sanctions (the Russian ban on adoptions was imposed in response to US sanctions; re-starting adoptions would presumably mean lifting sanctions):

In which case, if Skittles is actually telling the truth that they went to the meeting and then this wacky lawyer just talked about adoptions so he concluded it was a dead end -- his official line of defense is essentially "I totally wanted to collude, but was too fucking stupid to recognize the quid pro quo being offered."

Also, anyone else have a McDonald's earworm? ("Collusion: I'm lovin' it".)

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