Friday Assorted Links

1A. Running While Female. Male runners may be shocked to learn how often women must endure on-the-run harassment. Many female runners have come to just expect it.

“43 percent of women at least sometimes experience harassment on the run. . . compared with just 4 percent of men. In the vast majority of cases, it’s not life-threatening. But it is pervasive, and it’s upsetting, and it’s most likely happening to. . . someone you know.

A man will look a woman up and down as she runs past. A driver will shout a come-on, laughing with his friends as they speed away. A person on a bike or in a car will follow a woman, and she might dart down a side street to escape. Even if nothing like this happens most days, knowing that it (or something worse) could happen causes stress. As the recent national dialogue surrounding Donald Trump’s sexist comments and alleged assaults brought to light, almost all women—runners or not—have endured unwanted sexual attention. And no matter how swift a woman’s pace, it’s impossible to outrun harassment.”

1B. Male athletes at Garfield High mentored on how to interact with women.

“‘There was things. . . that I noticed that I’ve done in the past . . . I just realized I should change,’ said Ramari, a football player.”

Imagine that, coaches looking past scoreboards.

2. Why America’s roads are in tatters.

“Brickyard is among the roads that the Muskegon County Road Commission has slated to be turned to gravel, twenty-eight miles in all.”

We are a nation in decline.

“Each American driver pays about $450 per year toward roads, according to the Journal of Infrastructure Systems. Europeans fork over on average 2 to 3.5 times as much — the difference is largely in fuel taxes. Americans have always resisted giving such financial support for infrastructure projects. . . . The federal gas tax, 18.4 cents per gallon, was last raised in 1993 and has since lost more than one third of its purchasing power. Only three states currently index their gas tax to inflation.”

You get what you don’t pay for.

3. How long must Seattle teachers save for house down payment?

“Teachers with five years of experience, and a master’s degree would pay about 28 percent of their annual salary on rent for a one-bedroom in Seattle, according to the NCTQ data.

“Are you giving people enough money to buy a house or even rent a modest apartment? If you aren’t doing that, you’re sort of depriving a profession of what makes it a profession.'”

4. Fuck, I Totally Forgot to Fight for Women’s Rights and Promote Sustainability.

“You know how it is, though.”

The Difference Between Jordan Spieth and Donald Trump

Aspiring leaders can learn a lot from Donald Trump. Specifically, what not to do. Last week he bragged that HE was going to pass the biggest tax cut in history. Not “my administration”, not “Congressional leaders and me”, “ME“. At the same time, when pressed to explain why he’s failed to pass any significant legislation so far, he has his Press Secretary blame Congress for “not doing their job”.

In contrast, listen to 24 year-old Jordan Spieth after winning his next golf tournament. Or Justin Thomas in three days in South Korea. Both consistently credit their teams for their success, starting every sentence with “We“. They credit their caddies, swing coaches, trainers, agents, and families for their success. Also note how they shift gears when they lose. “My putting wasn’t what it has been.” “I never had control of my driver.”

Two utterly opposite models of leadership. The U.S. Constitution says you have to be 35 years old to be President. If not for that, I’d say, let’s make a trade, Spieth to the Oval Office, Trump to the first tee. I mean he claims to have shot 73 last week. That news was timely, I was beginning to think he had his sense of humor surgically removed.

Somalis Know They Are Invisible

Naomi Klein, in her 2001 book, Fences and Windows, writes:

“When I was twenty-three, I had my first media job as a copy editor at a newspaper. The newspaper closed at 11p.m., but two people stayed until 1a.m. in case a news story broke that was so significant it was worth reopening the front page. On the first night that it was my turn to stay late, a tornado in a southern U.S. state killed three people and the senior editor on duty decided to reopen the front page. On my second night, I read on the wires that 114 people had just been killed in Afghanistan, so I dutifully flagged own the senior editor. Remember, I was young, and it seemed to me that if three people warranted reopening the front page, then 114 would surely classify as a major news event. I will never forget what the editor told me. ‘Don’t worry, he said, “‘those people kill each other all the time.’

Since September 11, I’ve been thinking again about that incident, about how we in the media participate in a process that confirms and reconfirms the idea that death and murder are tragic, extraordinary and intolerable in some places and banal, ordinary, unavoidable, even expected in others.

. . . I still think the idea that some blood is precious, some blood is cheap is not just morally wrong but has helped to bring us to this bloody moment in our history.

That cold, brutal, almost unconscious calculus works it way into our shared global psyche and twists and maims us. It breeds the recklessness of those who know they are invisible, that they are not among the counted.”

This weekend a bombing in Somalia’s capital, Mogadishu, killed over 300 people and left hundreds more seriously wounded. It was so lightly reported on, it’s understandable if you know Green Bay Packer quarterback Aaron Rodgers broke his collar bone Sunday, but were completely unaware of the massive loss of life in the Horn of Africa.

After 9/11, a friend of Klein’s wrote to her:

“Compassion is not a zero sum game. But there is also undeniably something unbearable in the hierarchy of death—1 American equals 2 west Europeans equals 10 Yugoslavs equals 50 Arabs equals 200 Africans—which is one part power, one part wealth, one part race.”

Last night I traveled to Somalia through the pen of Alexis Okeowo. Okeowo introduced me to 17 year-old Aisha, a young basketball obsessed woman living in Mogadishu. I wish I knew her in real life so that I could support her and cheer her on. Her harrowing but inspiring story is inextricably linked to some of our planet’s most pressing challenges.

The more I got to know her, the more I wondered about her future. Then a deep sadness. She could have been among the dead.

Friday Assorted Links

1. Why are more American teenagers than ever suffering from severe anxiety?

“Anxiety is the most common mental-health disorder in the United States, affecting nearly one-third of both adolescents and adults, according to the National Institute of Mental Health. But unlike depression, with which it routinely occurs, anxiety is often seen as a less serious problem.”

2. Eatonville middle schoolers take their physical education outdoors.

“Mr. McWilliams taught the class teambuilding, orienteering, and the ten essentials.”

Where was Mr. McWilliams at Lexington Junior High? When I head into the backcountry, I usually have two or three essentials.

3. One of the first Ironwomen in history returns to the race that made her famous.     Julie Moss. Badass.

4. America’s largest pumpkins—from the Specific Northwest.

5. Jodi Kantor on how Megan Twohey and she broke the Harvey Weinstein story wide open. Damn, let’s turn that investigative reporting genius on the White House


I’m Ageist

Eighty-four year old Dianne Feinstein has decided to run for re-election. She says she has the energy.

If I were a Californian, I would not vote for her. Nor would I vote for an 84 year old male. Whether she has the energy right now isn’t the question. The question is will she at age 90. No, she won’t. Isn’t there someone, somewhere in the Golden State, with more energy?

Golden Staters should thank Dianne for her service and elect Steve Kerr, a true youngster at 52, bad back and all.


Males Last Bastion—Economics

Last week, after reading Tyler Cowen’s predictions of which men might win the Nobel Prize in economic science, I wondered why do males so dominate economics when females are steadily pulling away from males in educational attainment? Why do female economists find the upper echelon’s of the field so elusive? More specifically, where is the female half of Nobel Prize winners in economic science?

Increasingly, economics is applied math. I do not believe men are better than women at math. For me, if there’s some kind of proof of that contention, it simply begs more questions, particularly, why are men (allegedly) better than women at math. I suspect there are differences between men’s and women’s brains, but I don’t believe for a second that the part of men’s brains that do math is somehow superior to that part of women’s.

I suspect the All Star economist gender discrepancy lies in the male dominated cultures that typify elite economics graduate schools. For now, male privilege perpetuates itself in the top doctoral programs.

Here’s Cowen’s interesting summary of the winner’s work.