April 3, 2011

Week-end catch-up: Feminism, Emma, Tween girls, Superglue, and Baseball

Some articles that caught my eye last week that you might enjoy.

We really don't know when life begins

As our knowledge of the material world, of science, has exploded in modern history it has only been proven time and time again that what was revealed long ago is true.  God "ordered all things in measure, and number, and weight." (Wisdom 11:21)  Indeed if the material world were not ordered and in constant motion, there could be no "science."

‘I’d Kill for a Good Soda’ Takes on a Whole New Meaning

That Pepsi you are drinking may only be as good as the aborted fetal cell lines that were evidently used in its flavor-enhancement development. Pepsi, Nestle, Kraft, and others, partner with Senomyx (SNMX for you financial-wire watchers), which does just that. Campbell’s has severed its ties with Senomyx, but so far Pepsi stands firm ….

Not the first and certainly not the last to bemoan the downside of feminism, S.E. Cupp : For all too many women, the joys of motherhood are gone.

And I've been fairly content, living unencumbered in relative peace and quiet with my curdling dairy products and impressive collection of takeout menus, all of which are evidence of my go-go lifestyle, a successful career and a decidedly postmodern self-sufficiency. I own nothing and am responsible for no one, save a few friends who rely on me to occasionally accompany them to weddings, as they, too, have put off the seminal responsibilities of adulthood.

But as liberating as my life has been, I can't help but wonder if my mother's generation made a wrong turn somewhere.
Their success has been our failure. By getting married, starting a family, working hard as a public school teacher (how quaint!) and happily making all the sacrifices that come with that, my mother unwittingly but definitely ensured that I would grow up to want different things: an Ivy League education, a promising career with higher earning potential and the independence to travel the world. It's doubtful she ever imagined that that would all come at the expense of making life's ultimate investment: becoming a mother myself.

The AmExed Sexing Up of the American Tween

Dr. Meeker paints a blunt medical picture for any mom or dad being coy about parenting: “Here’s how we know. In 1979, when I graduated from college, there were two sexually transmitted infections snaking their way through the sexually ‘open’ teens and adults who chose to explore their sexuality through freer sexual expression. Herpes 2 broke upon the scene in a fierce way, increasing 500 percent from 1980 to 1990. By the time 2000 rolled around, there were over 30 STIs in the then–15 million Americans each year who contracted a new STD. Now, in 2011, the CDC reports that 20 million Americans each year contract a new STI, and almost 50 percent are young people (teens and college students). This is completely unacceptable.”

In praise of the homely female arts, Jillian Tamaki's beautiful  cross-stitch covers of deluxe Penguin classics, Emma, Black Beauty and the Secret Garden.

 Emma

The Anchoress recommends "The Music Box" by Daniel Cloud Campos

Things I learned at ProCommerce

Al Jazeera has more complete news than the New York Times and its bias against Israel is much smaller.

The technological advance in vegetable packaging is due to nitrogen and plastic that looks like cellophane.

Life expectancy is increasing by five hours a day.  IQ keeps going up by three points a decade.  Agriculture gets ever more productive, leaving more land to remain wild.  Even economic inequality is decreasing, with poor countries getting rich faster than rich countries are getting richer....Overall global warming is proceeding slower than was predicted.  Humanity has been decarbonizing its energy supply steadily for 150 years as we progressed from wood to coal to oil to natural gas.  A few years ago it was thought that only 25 years of natural gas was left, but with the invention of hydrofracking shale gas, the supply is suddenly 250 years worth, and it is a hugely cleaner source than coal.

There is one and only one reason that American education never improves.  It is not Darwinian.
Failures don’t disappear and successes are not reproduced.
Minimum wage increases kill jobs and here is data to prove it.  More than two million jobs paying the minimum wage of $7.25 or less were lost between 2010 and 2006

Why it's good that Millions of Spiders in Pakistan Encase Entire Trees in Webs

Superglue inventor Harry Coover dies at 94. 

His fast-acting and super-strong adhesive was invented in 1942 as a side effect of another project to create transparent plastic gun sights. The sights didn’t work out because the material created stuck everything together, but the adhesive that came out of those experiments was eventually sold as a super glue called Eastman 910.

If you follow the Original  Superglue blog, you'll learn that dermatologists recommend superglue to seal the cracks on winter dry hands.    But don't use superglue to attach a tiny top hat to your head, lest you look like Sean  Murtagh who had to go the the emergency room to get it  cut off.

 Superglue Tophat Head

John Allen gives us the Top Nine Reasons why Baseball is to Sports what Catholicism is to Religion.

1. Both baseball and Catholicism venerate the past. Both have a Communion of Saints, all the way down to popular shrines and holy cards.
2. Both feature obscure rules that make sense only to initiates.
3. Both have a keen sense of ritual, in which pace is critically important.
5. In both baseball and Catholicism, you can dip in and out, but for serious devotees the liturgy is a daily affair.
Posted by Jill Fallon at April 3, 2011 10:41 AM | Permalink