Google’s race and gender makeup is Trade Secret in tech business, says Google

Google, Don’t Be Hypocritical (NBC Bay Area, emphasis mine):

Despite its supposed mission to “organize the world’s information,” Google has fought to hide data about the race and gender makeup of its workforce.

The San Jose Mercury News reported that it had fought for 18 months through Freedom of Information Act requests to obtain data collected by the Department of Labor about the employees of Google and 14 other large Silicon Valley employers.

The question of diversity cuts to the core of Silicon Valley’s values. Investors, entrepreneurs, and managers love to tout the technology industry’s so-called meritocracy, in which talented workers rise quickly to the top. And yet the reality is that the technology industry remains dominated by white males, especially in management.

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Too late

You were like a god or devil of music, an angel or demon of dance. Your music was everywhere. When you moonwalked, the laws of physics didn’t seem to apply to you.

You were a black man in a white man’s body.

You were masculine and feminine.

You were hypersexual, yet asexual.

You were a man-child.

Like a tragic hero, you came from a dark past, and then you rose too high and shone, and then you fell too low and decayed.

We heard the news that you died, and then we understood …

You were human, a person. You were one of us.

Period Time: Menstruation Music with Mya

Renee of Womanist Musings periodically blogs about menstruation. While my cycle used to be synced up with hers, this time I was late. Although periods are messy, inconvenient, and often painful, sometimes not having a period can be a source of mental anguish.

Mya‘s album Moodring contains a great track about this, called “Late”. You can listen to Late while you read the lyrics below, which were slightly modified from azlyrics:

28 days pass me by and she ain’t even show
Got me smokin’, knowin’ damn well I don’t even smoke
Cause the worst thing ain’t knowin’ when, but not knowin’ when at all
I shoulda been more careful when I let him rock my boat
I stressin’ all day, everyday, hopin’ it’s not the case
I hope I’m just

Late
It shoulda came by now, so I’m tryna figure out
Late
What the hell you did, to me when you took a dig
Late
I’m overdue, what are we gonna do
I know my body, and it’s drivin’ me crazy
I’m never
Late

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Nice Guy (TM) at XKCD

Nice Guy™ at XKCD:

Friends

This XKCD comic is titled “Friends”.

Sadly—but unsurprisingly—many (heterosexual) male geeks at the “Friends” XKCD comic discussion thread see nothing wrong with being a Nice Guy™.

(Basically, a Nice Guy™ (not to be confused with a nice guy) is a guy who is “nice” to a woman for sex. When this does not work, he concludes that women want “jerks”.)

Related links:

Linus Torvalds supports Barack Obama.

Linus Torvalds, original creator of the Linux kernel, wants Barack Obama to be the President of the United States. In his blog post Black and white, Torvalds writes:

The reason I bring this up is that while I can’t vote, I did want to say publicly anyway that I really really hope that Obama will be the US president elect after Tuesday night. I realize it probably won’t come as a big shock to anybody (yes, I’m a socially liberal open source freak from Europe – so what would you expect?), and others will just be angry.

If anybody wants a reason for that, just watch (or listen to) Obama’s “Call to Renewal” keynote speech from 2006. It looks like it’s split into 5 pieces on youtube – the whole thing is about 40 minutes – but it’s worth it, just to hear something rare: mentioning religion in the US without being black-or-white.

[…]

There are other reasons, but that’s the one that originally made me hope Obama would take the democratic nomination. And what he has done since hasn’t changed that. He’s obviously smart and thoughtful, and he has a very interesting background that makes me believe that he really can see the other side not just when it comes to religion, but when it comes to international issues too.

Of course I’m biased (we all have our quirks), but I think it makes a difference to have actually lived in another culture. I suspect Obama understands the US better because he has seen something else, and has seen it from a wider background. He’s not a black and white person – and ironically, that is probably partly exactly because he is a black and white person in a totally different sense.

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Stephen Harper is racist.

The same-sex marriage bill is “a threat to any Canadian who supports multiculturalism,” said Stephen Harper in 2005, before the Liberal Party of Canada passed the same-sex marriage bill.

There is no contradiction between same-sex marriage and multiculturalism, but there is only the stereotype that non-white Canadians are inherently homophobic. A 2005 article in the Globe & Mail reported Harper’s rationale for his campaign tactics:

Mr. Harper’s tactics stem, in part, from a survey conducted by the Conservative Party before last month’s Victoria caucus meeting. According to party sources, the poll, which did not include Quebec voters, found that the governing Liberals were supported by 31 per cent of decided voters compared with 28 per cent for the Tories.

More importantly, however, pollsters asked how many of those voters would consider leaving the Liberal Party if it supported same-sex marriage.

What they found startled them.

A full six percentage points of Liberal supporters said they would consider exiting their party. By contrast, Tory support dropped by only two percentage points when supporters were asked whether they would drift away should the caucus oppose the bill.

[Conservative] Party officials concluded that the six-percentage-point drop for the Liberals was probably made up of small-c ethnic supporters, and decided at that point to begin running controversial newspaper ads opposing gay marriage.

Basically, the Conservative Party officials found evidence that 6% of Liberal voters would consider leaving the Liberals if the Liberals supported same-sex marriage, and then concluded, based on no evidence, that these voters must be the “ethnics”, i.e., non-white people.

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