All of Glen Raphael's Comments + Replies

Covid-19: My Current Model

That study made me much more inclined to think HCQ is useful as a prophylactic.

Among the full study group there was a reduction of illness of a bit over 17% but it's better than that: the study's supplementary appendix includes a chart that breaks out various subgroups including a breakout by DAY. The most benefit was found for people who started treatment on day ONE post-exposure. Next best was starting on day TWO post-exposure. By day three there was a negligible benefit and by day four there was a negligible harm - that subgroup actually did a... (read more)

4Gunnar_Zarncke1yThank you for looking deeper into this. A likely 1/3 reduction when taking it on day 1 is amazing. And if people at risk take it routinely ("day zero") it might be even better. I guess I have to update back to 40% likely it works.
Bay Solstice 2019 Retrospective

FYI, the two extra verses in that video are:

(1) since I was performing on a boat:

"They may drown my body when I die (x2)...If upon this stage I died, they might toss me off the side"

(2) Since I expected many Doctor Who fans to be in that particular audience:

"They may disintegrate my body when I die (x2)...If a Dalek wished me hate, he might say EXTERMINATE"

(Note: the boat verse can be used when not on a boat but is weaker then and one must in that circumstance change "upon this stage" to "upon a boat".)

Bay Solstice 2019 Retrospective

I notice that When I Die is incorrectly listed as requiring guitar, likely because in the spreadsheets the linked musical reference is to the solo guitar-and-voice version I recorded ages ago...but that guitar arrangement is (a) tricky, (b) not terribly conducive to singalong. Thus, I suggest anyone maintaining these sort of spreadsheets change the When I Die musical reference to a youtube link for the a cappella harmony version, such as this link:

UPDATE: That video version was recorded on a nerd-cruise with a co... (read more)

2Raemon1yI think I have recordings from 2016 or 2017, will dig up.
Melting Gold, and Organizational Capacity

Hoping it's okay to drop down to the object level for a bit...something that's been bugging me about events like Solstice is the degree to which they resist being self-documenting. My ideal in this regard would be the Jewish Seder.

If you think about how a Seder works: there is a Hagaddah, where nearly everything that is said or done or sung is listed in the Hagaddah and read from it verbatim - it is an outline, it is a summary, and it is also the primary content. Most importantly, a Hagaddah explains its own structure; it starts out with text tha... (read more)

2Raemon6moI think this comment is actually a pretty important piece of "how to do Solstice" that should be entering into the "How to do Solstice" canon. It also makes me feel a bit better about including both a) a more extensive Welcome Speech, and b) the Meditations on Past/Present/Future in the 2020 Solstice despite those not being that popular, since I think they provide important framing for the whole thing that makes it more sticky. (I don't know that they actually solve the problem either, but, I think things in this space are important for Solstice)
6NancyLebovitz4yThere's an alternate approach I've seen in Neo-Paganism-- have a structure for rituals, and a high proportion of people who can improvise within the framework. I don't know whether this would work for rationalist rituals (maybe if we start having smaller more frequent rituals), but I'm mentioning it for completeness.

Yeah. I actually have a blog post upcoming called something like "The Moment of Darkness Speech may have been my single largest mistake", essentially for the reasons described here.

I have more thoughts on this, essentially boiling down to "By now I do think there is (mostly) enough material for Solstice to switch to Easy Mode, but there are some reasons you want to at least preserve the ability to work in Hard Mode. There are also reasons for somewhere there to exist Big Solstice which has a lot of logistical issues that Small Family Solstic... (read more)

Cash transfers are not necessarily wealth transfers

Private education in the third world is quite inexpensive - cheap enough to be affordable to a substantial fraction of the poorest families - according to The Beautiful Tree ( ).