11 comments posted · 2 followers · following 0

5 years ago @ - The Black Market · 1 reply · +1 points

Hey does anyone have Voyager 4 x 07 and TNG 6 x 14?

5 years ago @ Mark Watches - Mark Watches 'Crusade'... · 1 reply · +5 points

I think that's exactly it. Granted, I enjoy watching Indiana Jones, and for it's time period, what he did happened a lot. But the "go out to find a specific high-value artifact and return it to your home museum" period died out a long time ago.

5 years ago @ Mark Watches - Mark Watches 'Crusade'... · 4 replies · +8 points

Now that we're here I'm going to get on my long-awaited soapbox about how archaeology is different from how it's portrayed in television. Archaeology the way it's practiced in the United States (and Canada) since the 1960s was changed forever with the signing into law of the National Historic Preservation Act of 1966 by Lyndon Johnson. In doing so it created the National Register of Historic Places, the list of National Historic Landmarks, and required the States, the Commonwealths, and the Free Associated states to create State Historic Preservation Offices to do as follows:

(A) — In cooperation with Federal and State agencies, local governments, and private organizations and individuals, direct and conduct a comprehensive statewide survey of historic properties and maintain inventories of such properties;
(B) — Identify and nominate eligible properties to the National Register and otherwise administer applications for listing historic properties on the National register;
(C) — Prepare and implement a comprehensive statewide historic preservation plan;
(D) — Administer the State program of Federal assistance for historic preservation within the State;
(E) — Advise and assist, as appropriate, Federal and State agencies and local governments in carrying out their historic preservation responsibilities;
(F) — Cooperate with the Secretary, the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation, and other Federal and State agencies, local governments, and organizations and individuals to ensure historic properties are taken into consideration at all levels of planning and development;
(G) — Provide public information, education and training, and technical assistance relating to the Federal and State Historic Preservation Programs; and
(H) — Cooperate with local governments in the development of the local historic preservation programs and assist local governments in becoming certified pursuant to subsection C.

The demand for archaeologists and other preservationists for these jobs led to the birth of the Cultural Resource Management industry. Which now accounts for 90% of archaeology in the United States. That and archaeologists hired by federal and state government directly. CRM archaeologists locate, record and evaluate archaeological sites (defined as sites over 50 years old) on Federal and state lands for inclusion on the NRHP and the state equivalents. We monitor government and private infrastructure development on state lands to protect those sites, and when we really have to, we preform data recovery operations to record as much data out of sites that said government and private entities have no choice but to build through.

Ironically, IPX is closer to reality than most, with archaeologists working for private corporations. However, Eilerson is...annoying. Odds are the kind of archaeology he's doing in unclaimed space would still be the purview of academic archaeologists. Firms like IPX would be called in on projects in Earth controlled space for the reasons above. Also, they pay you a set rate based on your position and making discoveries like on Ceti wouldn't make a difference. A Principle Investigator like Doctor Eilerson and Doctor Hendricks from "Infection" would be making about as much as he can in the type of position he occupies anyway. Which admittedly isn't enough but it's enough to be comfortable... we don't go into archaeology to make money. Anyone who really wants to have a six figure job in academia should go into engineering.

5 years ago @ Mark Watches - Mark Watches 'Babylon ... · 0 replies · +2 points

In my final thoughts on this issue. Yes, that is exactly what happened. But everyone, literally EVERYONE on whatever side of the aisle you find yourself, does that. The Kennedy's for example, have been talked up a paragons of the American spirit for decades by Democrats ...but John and Robert's father Joseph was a notorious anti-Semite and Nazi supporter whom Churchill wanted removed from his post as ambassador to the UK. John Kennedy aside from routinely cheating on his wife, was...ambivalent to how the Southern wing of his own party was responding to the civil rights movement until Bobby Kennedy, the brother he appointed as his own attorney general in a fit of nepotism, walked in and told him that they were looking horrible on global television.

Gandhi, the father of Indian independence, was notoriously racist against Africans, and much of his legal activism in South Africa wasn't about abolishing apartheid altogether, but allowing Indians to be exempt on the same basis as Whites in South Africa. I can't speak to whether or not his views changed on that point, particularly when he met MLK, but he did have those views.

There isn't a single prominent person from any group who's questionable activities haven't been cleaned up in order to present a sainted 2-D angel for the political gain of the group in question. At the same time, however, Gandhi helped free India from centuries of British rule, and Churchill was instrumental in keeping Britain in the game during the bloodiest war in human history. A nuanced and more critical view of these men can't just ignore that.

5 years ago @ Mark Watches - Mark Watches 'Babylon ... · 0 replies · +8 points

Mostly this was JMS trying to get a dig in on his critics.

And I'm specializing in archaeology. My entire training is centered around fighting for peoples who are underrepresented in history. But to quote this show, "Understanding is a three-edged sword, your side, their side, and the truth." Records from the dominant people in a narrative should always be taken with a grain of salt in order to account for unconscious biases, but they're still important resources. For that matter, everyone has unconscious biases that need to be accounted for.

Plus, human history is a massive pallet of grays, and it's not always the case that the views of the underrepresented people you so rightfully mention are diametrically opposed to the accounts that have hitherto dominated. And the views of the previously dominant narrative aren't always unsympathetic or uncritical of their treatment of other groups. Which is doubtless inconvenient to nationalists of all stripes, but there it is.

5 years ago @ Mark Watches - Mark Watches 'Babylon ... · 4 replies · +9 points

I'm not absolving Churchill of his sins. But people are more nuanced than Darth Vader-style supervillains. Churchill believed that "Indian independence" was a codeword for "powergrab by the Indian aristocracy." Which, in a way, was pretty much exactly what happened. Not that I'm saying India shouldn't have been granted her independence. The Mau-Mau movement killed at least as many civilians as the British, and as one of my anthropology professors pointed out in detail, the leaders of the Mau-Mau, American-educated anthropologists, spilled those rivers of blood to create a new strong sense of Kenyan identity. And I can only say that because they themselves admitted as much.

As the head of the anthropology department told us in class two days ago, "you don't base your proposals on trying to read the minds of dead people,"

5 years ago @ Mark Watches - Mark Watches 'Babylon ... · 0 replies · +13 points

Sheridan's entire basis for taking on Clark was that he was violating the Constitution. Constitutionally B5 was an EA military base. His entire basis for declaring independence was to fend off Clark's attack and return B5 to EA control once the constitutional order had been restored. He's wasn't planning on actually birthing a new nation on a permanent basis.

5 years ago @ Mark Watches - Mark Watches 'Babylon ... · 6 replies · +10 points

I have two degrees. One in Anthropology and one in history. I understand the desire to view history through the need to take the emphasis off the individual, and it was annoying that JMS decided to take a swipe at that thinking. But he's not entirely wrong either. I do think historians tend to overdo the desire to remove the "Great Man" from history. To quote Frank McLynn's latest biography of Genghis Khan:

"Of course to historians of a certain kind any elevation of the individual is unpalatable and misleading. Engels famously stated that great men appear when a given socio-economic situation requires them, but the argument is circular because the only sign that social circumstances require them is the fact that they actually do appear."

As for Churchill, one of the things that's drilled into students of both fields over and over is to avoid "presentism" at all costs. You don't judge historical figures based on our values. You just don't, it distorts our ability to actually put their actions into context.

5 years ago @ - Weekly Shenanigans · 0 replies · +2 points

Thank you :)

5 years ago @ - Weekly Shenanigans · 5 replies · +1 points

I know this is a little late, but does anyone have any spare links to B5 episodes 3x06-3x09?