Blargh Blog

Monday, February 28, 2005

An Exciting Development

Philosophers' Carnival #10 is up at E. G., with an exciting new twist. This one is numbered with Arabic numerals rather than Roman numerals. If this promising new trend continues, it will make it easier to add, subtract, multiply, divide, and perform other arithmetical operations with the numbers of Philosophers' Carnivals. However, it will become more difficult to keep track of when the Philosophers' Carnival has surpassed the Super Bowl.


Sunday, February 27, 2005

Open Thread

If you have any questions, comments, requests, suggestions (about content or format), or anything else that you want to share that is not a comment on some other particular post, feel free to put it in the comments here. Or, you could email me at the hotmail account that I have under the name of this blog (blargh blog), without the space.


Friday, February 25, 2005

Hip Hop Blogs

Josh Levin has a half-serious Slate piece that includes the following fun quiz: Rapper or Blogger?

1. Uggabugga
2. Mad Kane
3. Big Noyd
4. Justus League
5. Uppity Negro
6. Little Brother
7. Cold Fury
8. South Knox Bubba

(Answers are upside down on p. 54)

This little quiz, of course, is proof that rappers and bloggers were "separated at birth," which puts bloggers in good company. Others who were separated at birth from rappers include toiletries (consider "All Fresh"), entries on U.S. government terrorist watch list (consider "Black Star"), paint colors (consider "Corinthian"), and gay rights advocacy groups (consider "Stonewall"). On the list of notable separated-at-birth pairs, see also music groups and pre-1900 American political parties (consider "The Locofocos"), death metal albums and Hardy Boys novels (consider "Edge of Destruction"), and porn actors and local TV weathermen (consider "Stephen Cropper").

Despite his seemingly overwhelming evidence*, I think that Levin's claim that bloggers are just like rappers is a bit of a stretch. I mean, rappers are obviously dog people and bloggers are cat people. But his article does give me a chance to point out some of the REAL hip hop blogs. Check out this hard core template style feud (be sure to read the comments). And peep Hip Hop Blogs, who totally came up with this idea before Levin did.

Quiz Answers
Bloggers: 1, 2, 5, 7, 8
Rappers: 3, 4 (group), 6 (group)

If I were Josh, I would have included a group blog or two (maybe The Volokh Conspiracy) to balance out the rap groups.

*If I were seriously interrogating this issue, like a bonified internet journalist, then I would mention some of Levin's serious evidence. But instead I'll just fill my post with links and witty banter and leave you with these words:

Rock helped influence hip hop, hip hop helped influence the world - DJ Jazzy Jay

On behalf of the entire "Mainstream Media," Howard Fineman has surrendered to Blogonia, and Giblets, its cruel and unyielding Blogarch, accepts! ... Truly blogs are truly the ascendent masters of media discourse! -


Thursday, February 17, 2005

More odometer-gazing

My odometer has been clicking through an interesting range. Ever since it hit 1453, the Fall of Constantinople, I've been tracking its progression through European history. We've passed Columbus's sailing of the ocean blue (1492), Martin Luther's 95 theses (1517), and the invincible Spanish Armada (1588; warning: boats and invincibility do not go well together). Since hitting the mile mark (1609), we've made our way through various English Civil Wars and reached the Treaty of Westphalia (1648) on the continent. So many memories, and so many more coming. The Glorious Revolution! The War of Spanish Succession!

What's kept the odometer moving? Much of the credit goes to google, yahoo, altavista, et al. They've been bringing in people with searches for everything from blargh to (as I noted below) kanye west everyone wants to know what's he do if he doesn't win well I guess they'll never grammys . I've won a spot on the first page for both of those searches, and also, inexplicably, for the search pluralistic society . I've also suckered in a variety of people with Blink-related searches, like Gottman thin slices, CEO height tall bias OR advantage "57 " , and vic braden blink double faults. Naive realism brings in a steady trickle of eyeballs. Yes, a steady trickle of eyeballs. A variety of searches bring people to the Island of Truth and Lies story (which I may someday finish), including this one: truthtellers and liars puzzles from the act of creation. Perfect haircuts also attract a tiny crowd, with search terms ranging from my perfect haircut to short asymmetrical haircuts. And we can't forget about Carnies.

Here are some more winning search terms:

- zoologists

- mole right middle finger

- stick avalanche number 2 [yahoo canada]

- cult of victimhood pervades through western society

- rudolph the red nose reindeer + psychology(gay)

- Count to 132 in binary on your fingers

Related Posts: Milestones

UPDATE 2/24: Someone found this website by searching for memodome! I'm adding a "words you can use" feature to the sidebar in celebration.


Monday, February 14, 2005

Telephone Call for Mr. Gettier

This weekend I called up my friend Carl*. He picked up the phone and said hello, and, recognizing his voice, I said "Hey, Carl" and asked him what was going on. It turns out that his brother Carter was staying with him, and the three of us ended up getting together and going to see a movie.

The weird thing is that Carter's voice sounds just like Carl's. I've known Carl for years (though I hadn't met Carter before), but during the evening I had to pay attention just to keep track of who was talking.

Thinking back to the phone call, I realized that I had gotten lucky. It's always embarrassing when you're talking on the phone as if you knew who you were talking to, but it turns out to be someone else with a similar-sounding voice. Fortunately, Carter wasn't the one on the phone this time, so I avoided the embarrassment.

I actually did something better than avoiding embarrassment. I stumbled on an everyday Gettier case. I had a true belief (I was talking to Carl) that was justified (I had called Carl's house and a voice like his greeted me on the phone) but it seems like luck, not knowledge. Now I feel special, like Glen must've felt when he sat in on a real-life Condorcet cycle.

So why is it that most Gettier problems that I hear about involve strange things like fake barns, robot dogs, a person hidden in his office, or beliefs about pocket change? An ordinary Gettier case could be just a telephone call away.

*I've fictionalized names and other aspects of this story just enough to give it universal appeal, rather than leaving it as merely a tale of my particular life.


West Wins

Kanye West won 3 Grammys out of 10 nominations, with The College Dropout getting the Grammy for rap album and Jesus Walks taking the Grammy for rap song. I posted here on the success that Kanye's religious-minded song has received. I even left a comment last month at Passion for Fairness to see what they thought of his success (is Jesus Walks the kind of religious work that they want to see rewarded by the entertainment establishment?), but I have not received a reply.

In related news, someone came to my blog with the search term kanye west everyone wants to know what's he do if he doesn't win well I guess they'll never grammys. All I know about this is what I read in the Washington Post, which describes West's acceptance speech as follows:

Then, switching from solemn to sly: "Everybody wanted to know what I'd do if I didn't win." West lifted his trophy in the air and struck a cool pose, enjoying the suspense. "I guess we'll never know!"


Sunday, February 13, 2005

Left Behind

David Adesnik is reading and blogging Left Behind, the novel in which Biblical prophecy about the end of times comes true. His posts are an interesting read, for both their summary and their critique of the book.

Part II is here, and more is coming.

Update (2/14):
- Part III here
- Here Adesnik links to Fred Clark, who Adesnik describes as "a committed Christian who sees the Left Behind novels -- and even moreso, their popularity -- as serious threat to all that Christianity stands for." Clark's long and growing discussion of Left Behind is here.


Sunday, February 06, 2005

A Carnival of Philosophy on the World Wide Web

At Studi Galileiani, e-philosophers from around the e-globe have e-gathered for the 9th e-carnival of philosophy.


Saturday, February 05, 2005


I hope this works out as well as it sounds.

Die, farm subsidies, die! The President is on a mission to take you down. He's going on the offensive and you have nowhere to run and nowhere to hide. Let's roll!

[Insert Nixon-to-China reference here]

Update: Some perspective, from people who know more than me.