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About ants

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    A Valiant Knight of the Fur!
  • Birthday 07/17/1978

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  1. They were meant to have won a big government contract. How big it is in the context of their size, who knows. As I'm not clicking on right-wing links.
  2. So is this Pelosi news with respect to her husband buying Microsoft share options using her inside knowledge a real thing? I can only find references to it on right-wing media, and I really would prefer not to click on them. (it was brought up in a US politics thread on another message board).
  3. To be fair, there have been a few lefty politicians who have been slaughtered in other similar countries (UK, Australia), which may also feed into it a little bit.
  4. Yes, I was referring to SMJ's court series. I think I'm still at book 3 or 4. A few new series I've read recently. Several quite good ones, but nothing absolutely stunning. Trying to think the last time a new UF series blew me away. Touchstone by Andrea K. Höst This series is technically science-fiction, but when the key focus is psychic abilities most UF readers will love it. The series is complete. It is a little bit young adult, with the main protagonist just completing school when she accidentally is shifted to another world. The series is written as a number of journal entries, and is both engrossing and interesting. The action isn't a huge focus, but the heart of the books is the mystery of what happened to the civilization of the first world the protagonist ends up on. The author is Australian, so doubly worth a plug! I'm definitely checking out her other work. Sundance Series by C.P.Rider Read the first book and started on the second. So far seems decent, reasonably bog-standard UF. Not much standing out at this stage even negatively or positively. Twisted Luck Series by Mel Todd Again, a decent read but not really stand out. The third book has jumped the shark a bit, with a significant powering up of the main character. The first book is very low action, following a young protagonist finishing university. The world is quite interesting in that it has a high level magic content, and the social structures are not bad. The protagonist is unmagical, but we all know how long that will last! I really enjoyed the first two books, but the third one is just a bit too silly. Will probably read a fourth when its out. (Oh, and does anyone else hate it when a UF book has something like this in the title "My Luck: Urban Fantasy where magic is common, snark is plentiful, and adulthood sucks"? I got this one, but it is so often a turn-off for me. Spellbreaker by Charlie N. Holmberg Not a bad initial book, although again nothing really stands out from it. Historical urban fantasy. Manners and Monsters by Tilly Wallace A delightful historical UF series that is up to 4 books, with a 5th on the way. I would recommend this series, although its not a huge amount more than fluff. Very good for a casual read.
  5. Guys, can we avoid spoilers a bit? I'm like @lady narcissa, that I haven't kept up with that series. But do plan to go back. Also, is it really paranormal romance and not just fantasy? I've read all of the Mercy Thompson books, but only the first one or two of the others. I probably should go back and catch them up, I do buy them! I'm always a bit put off by Aaronvitch's novellas because they're so expensive. That one is more than most full books cost on Amazon. I read these via Library books a long time ago, and would love to redo. It is so frustrating that these are not on UK Kindle. I mean, she wrote the first one in 1991. Had anyone written about Vampires in urban fantasy back then as anything except villains? These must be amongst the most definitive, influential books in modern literature, and they can't be bought on kindle!!!!! People reference Anita Blake, but Vicki Nelson was published two years earlier. It's frustrating how many books are still not on Kindle, even contemporary ones (like some of Seanan McGuire's books). Edit: Just saw Huff's confederation books are no longer available as ebooks. Thankfully I bought them a while ago. How the hell can quality fiction like this not be sold as Kindle?????
  6. You and your weird WA habits. Sausages go in bread, not rolls!
  7. With respect to what is happening in Texas. Given that the power companies have seen this happen before, given that that there was the Federal report setting out the failures and what needed to be done ... Can the company executives be charged with manslaughter?
  8. Not really the comparison. Its really pressing a button vs. selling the day after pill.
  9. Generally agree with this, negligence isn't intent per se, but absolutely matters when consider culpability. I think a key area of argument is going to be when distinguishing which of the phrases "they should've known better", "they could've known better", "they had no reason to know that" and "sorry, but you have to live with it" apply. The reality is that there are lots of times when people should've known better, and that should absolutely be cut out. A good example will be many situations in the workplace, where nowadays every employer has a responsibility to ensure their employees do know the lines, the issues, and don't cross them. Employees who do then should've known better. I would also say the media, politics and company spokespeople are also in this situation (including twitter for celebrities/politicians). Anyone taking a public position in these groups has an onus to know what is offensive, and to cut it out. Protesters would also qualify; if you're shouting about blood and soil at a rally, screw context, you're being racist. There are times when they could've known better, but didn't. Where something is more specific and its fair they didn't know. A good example would be someone moving countries and not being aware that phrases in the new culture have specific meanings they don't in their own countries. An example would be some of the anti-semitic comments brought up in the various Labour investigations, which referenced terms I'd never heard of. Because they often reflected the history of the minority in that country or area. In these circumstances, harm may have been caused, but it isn't really fair to expect the person to know that. This does not however give a pass for performing actions to make sure the person isn't aware so they can't do it again in the future. There will be times when particular phrases cause harm, but due to particular circumstances the person who uses that phrase can rightfully say "it's not reasonable to expect me to have known that". Sometimes, it isn't reasonable to be expect they'd take offence. This could be because most reasonable people (including of that persecuted group) wouldn't consider it offensive, or it is offensive due to individual history or idiosyncrasies. The reality is there are some people who get offended because (consciously or unconsciously) they like being martyrs, or have a persecution complex. There are people who will have bad reactions due to very individual histories (such as a particular thing being related to a childhood trauma). Sometimes its fair that they take offence, sometimes it isn't. But what separates out this group is that there is no fair way an individual will know what causes the offence. And finally, sometimes the persecuted group has to live with it. The "OK" sign is a good example. Yes, white supremacists use that symbol, and it sucks. And when someone uses it in that context, call them out/punish them. But we're not going to go and stop divers using the symbol. We're not going to take it out of sign-language and force everyone who uses Auslan to re-learn bits. We're not going to go and remove swastikas from ancient temples in Asia to make sure someone can't see them. If someone encounters the symbol in these situations, unfortunately they don't have the right to even ask for people to stop. In these situations, context and intent is crucial, as the phrase/symbol has different meaning in different cultures. Now, in the first two we should absolutely try and improve as society, to reduce the number of "could've known better" into "should've known better" and punish those who cause harm who are in the should've known better category (and especially the category I didn't mention, did know better but did it anyway/deliberately). But any systems we set up have to allow for what is intent, what is negligence, and where the harm caused does not justify a response. And when we are responding to incidents where harm is caused, we should definitely be first checking/considering which of the groups above it falls into.
  10. Wow. So the EU signed their agreement first, and both contracts are on a best endeavours basis. So is there any reason the UK is being prioritised?
  11. Why would it reduce the pool of drivers? Simple supply & demand indicates that if Uber has to pay them more, more people will want to participate. The issue will be if the higher wages push prices up and demand for ride-share services drops. It would also be interesting to know if this has any implications for the taxi industry. Depending on how some are setup.
  12. Well, our short Melbourne lockdown ends. Good.
  13. I'm not either. I support Leeds, so beyond how fun it was to see Mourinho lose I don't have any horses in that race.
  14. On (2), it was the one in the last 10 minutes where a forward's feet were clipped in the Everton box. Not much in it, clearly accidental, but hard to argue it was vastly different to the actual penalty. And I agree, accidents count.
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