Print Story You know what they call a quarter-pounder with cheese on Vulcan?
Diary
By TheophileEscargot (Tue Dec 12, 2017 at 01:41:51 AM EST) Reading, MLP (all tags)
Reading: "Prisoners of Geography". Links.


What I'm Reading
Prisoners of Geography: Ten Maps That Tell You Everything You Need to Know About Global Politics by Tim Marshall. Book that tries to put the geography back in geopolitics, looking at how the physical landscape has determined history and current politics. The ten maps, each with a chapter, are: Russia; China; USA; Western Europe; Africa; The Middle East; India and Pakistan; Korea and Japan; Latin America; The Arctic.

A good book. He writes in a crisp, informative, entertaining way. Despite the title he avoids going too far and ignoring culture and politics altogether. He's quite good on how the geography around Russia makes it vulnerable to invasion unless it controls the plains around it, and how successive rulers have tried to that. I've read about this before but he's also good on how the geography and lack of navigable rivers in Africa are a problem for development, while the placid river networks of Europe are great for internal trade.

Overall, worth reading.

Links
Bryan Caplan: College is a waste of time, Noah Smith: no it isn't. Entrepeneurs v. Bureaucrats:

We used to think that politics should be a realm of stability and business of innovation. Today, it seems as if the opposite is the case: we have disruption in politics and secular stagnation in business.

Random. Cows in French. Sierra No. 3 is the archetypal Western movie locomotive. Quentin Tarantino to make Star Wars movie. France's Lost Pigeon-and-Balloon Memorial .

Politics. The Crisis of Masculinity is One of Scarcity, Not Excess. Brexit agreement. The Conservatives are an outdated closed shop.

Articles. Gene Roddenberry letter about early Wrath of Khan script. The Bait and Switch of Contemporary Christianity . God is not nice.

Sci/Tech. Machine learning chess algorithms defeat hand-coded.

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You know what they call a quarter-pounder with cheese on Vulcan? | 9 comments (9 topical, 0 hidden) | Trackback
Wrath of Khan script by hulver (4.00 / 2) #1 Tue Dec 12, 2017 at 03:32:03 AM EST
Reading that letter, it sounds like the early script was nothing like the final film.

In fact, I wish somebody had given that advice to the writers of the latest Star Trek films. They've made the same errors that Roddenberry is pointing out in that letter.
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Cheese is not a hat. - clock

I thought it was interesting by TheophileEscargot (2.00 / 0) #5 Tue Dec 12, 2017 at 01:42:03 PM EST
I tend to think of Starfleet as "The US Navy in space" since that was Roddenberry's experience, but he seems to have deliberately made it different: no saluting, no distinction between officers and enlisted. That seems to have faded as Star Trek has become steadily more action-oriented and militaristic.
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It is unlikely that the good of a snail should reside in its shell: so is it likely that the good of a man should?
[ Parent ]
Think more British by ucblockhead (4.00 / 1) #6 Wed Dec 13, 2017 at 12:00:19 PM EST
Roddenberry has made explicit references to Horatio Hornblower, and his inspiration was more closely related to the 18-19th century British age of sail, where military ships were carrying people like Darwin on explicitly exploratory journeys.
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[ucblockhead is] useless and subhuman
[ Parent ]
That would presumably have been by TheophileEscargot (2.00 / 0) #7 Fri Dec 15, 2017 at 03:53:06 PM EST
Even more class bound than the US navy. Makes more sense in terms of captains risking getting killed in away missions though.
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It is unlikely that the good of a snail should reside in its shell: so is it likely that the good of a man should?
[ Parent ]
It's not a perfect analogy by ucblockhead (4.00 / 1) #8 Fri Dec 15, 2017 at 09:04:50 PM EST
Roddenberry was a utopian multiculturalist.  But when you think of the "five year mission", think Captain Cook.
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[ucblockhead is] useless and subhuman
[ Parent ]
(Comment Deleted) by jimgon (4.00 / 1) #2 Tue Dec 12, 2017 at 08:10:26 AM EST

This comment has been deleted by jimgon



(Comment Deleted) by jimgon (2.00 / 0) #3 Tue Dec 12, 2017 at 08:12:39 AM EST

This comment has been deleted by jimgon



[ Parent ]
Star Trek by jimgon (4.00 / 4) #4 Tue Dec 12, 2017 at 09:36:20 AM EST
After seeing the first season of The Orville I think Seth MacFarlane should take over Star Trek. 




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Technician - "We can't even get decent physical health care. Mental health is like witchcraft here."
"Many churches are jerk factories" by ambrosen (4.00 / 1) #9 Sat Dec 16, 2017 at 07:17:57 AM EST
That's a great pull quote from the Bait and Switch article.

You know what they call a quarter-pounder with cheese on Vulcan? | 9 comments (9 topical, 0 hidden) | Trackback