Alphabetizing is obsolete?

The Chronicle of Higher Education has this quirky piece about how literacy is changing. The problem is that it’s premise (that tradition aside, ABC’s could be learned BAC) is simply wrong. While a searchable world makes certain kinds of literacy less important, the underlying structure of that world is governed by rules which rely on numeracy and alphabetical ordering. If you lose those, you may as well start banging rocks together to make fire.
http://chronicle.com/blogs/linguafranca/2014/03/31/alphabetizing/

Just realized what the day is. Jaysus. Nevermind.

 

What do we want of Toronto in 2033?

When Porter announced last May its intention to seek accommodation for Jets at the Toronto Island Airport it was on the understanding that it was a small change. What has emerged in the 10 months since that fated announcement has shown just how far Toronto has lost control over one of the most valuable chunks of infrastructural real-estate in the city.

The Raccoon of YTZ has pretty much sculpted the debate on the fate of the Islands into a contest between those for and those against jets. Those who seek convenience and those who simply don’t want progress. However, this actually skirts the issue. The real concern is what happens if City Hall agrees to allow jets and agrees to extend the current tripartite agreement beyond 2033? I want to propose a debate of much wider scope: what does this city want? Can we imagine something better for the site of YTZ that goes beyond a private venture on public land? I want us to ask ourselves seriously and without reservations: what do we want beyond 2033?

Do we want to continue shuttling people down Bathurst Street for the sake of flying them off somewhere else or do we want to make the bottom of Bathurst a destination in its own right?

Do we want that vision shaped by the political friends of whoever is sitting in Ottawa? The TPA’s board of patrons will never operate in the name of the city regardless of who controls Parliament, because it is a set of appointed jobs for the party loyal. As far as the Toronto Port Authority is concerned there is nothing at stake in the future of the city as anything except a center for extracting rent.
Does 2033 look like a place we want to build and live in or a place we simply have foisted on us? The conversation began 10 months ago. It’s been dominated by a single deafening roar: Bobby and his Jets. It is time for the rest of us to actually talk this out.

Words … Words … Words

Studies have shown that by the year 2000 the use of the term “racist” had started a rapid decline. Why? Perpetrators learned to wrap themselves in the shroud of victimhood.

In other words, people growing up in an era of media management have unthinkingly co-opted the same mentality into their own lives. They have internalised the PR manual and now instinctively know that claiming victimhood is a stone winner in any argument.

In Australia, the word ‘racist’ has lost all its meaning | Ed Butler | Comment is free | theguardian.com

Stop using the mentally ill as target practice.

It happens over and over again. The mentally ill, or those having fleeting but scary beaks, end up being used as practice targets by police. Its not a Toronto problem, its not a Durham problem. Its a POLICING problem, and it starts with three things: a gun, an attitude of untouchability, and ignorance.

Why did Durham police shoot and kill a naked man? | Toronto Star

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