walkitout (walkitout) wrote,

Kids These Days, They Have No Sense of History


"Instead, Montes memorized details from sensitive documents and then — when she got home — typed them from memory onto her laptop."

Sure she did. From 1985 until when she was arrested just after the 9/11 attacks. Yup. Def typing shit into a laptop. And then -- this is the best part -- transferring the data from the laptop to an encrypted disk. I suspect she was actually using a desktop PC during the first decade and maybe switched to a laptop towards the end of the period.

CNN has absolutely no excuse for this kind of error. This website is considerably less reputable; I was there pursuing a question about what exactly is responsible for the rise of Storye rye bread (what are they corralling exactly: bacteria, yeast or something else?).


This is the specific claim that triggered my, "really?! Really?!":

"When baker’s yeast was first introduced as an alternative to sourdough starters in 1668 in France, it was strongly rejected because scientists at the time already knew that it would negatively impact people’s health."

Yes, scientists were definitely the people objecting to baker's yeast in 1668 in France. No. It was actually medical doctors on the Faculty of Medicine of Paris University. And they were, technically, complaining about the use of brewer's yeast in making bread -- it wouldn't be called baker's yeast until _after_ bread made with added yeast took off. So you could call the objectors doctors. You could call them academics. You could call them consultants to the king. But anyone who complains about rotting water is tough for me to accept as a "scientist".

I get that you might be thinking, yeah, but that's not a Kids These Days, that's something else entirely. But the _specific_ issue I have is a Kids These Days issue. Whoever wrote that honest to goddess thinks there was an influential category of people that could be called "scientists" present in France in 1668.

Which there was not. Encyclopedists. Dilettantes. Rich fucks who stole ideas from mechanics and miners. And none of them were involved in this controversy anyway.

To be fair, neither of these errors is nearly egregious as that ridiculous thing about how in the 1980s a bunch of anarchist/socialists in Silicon Valley invented the PC or whatever ... on their laptops. I don't really get how people manage to pretzel fairly simple historical timelines so badly, but they do.

ETA: Also, as long as I'm here: those Frenchies were a little backwards anyway.


"According to an Amsterdam ordinance of 1652, the yeast for bread baking had to be unadulterated, just the way it came from the brewer, and measured with a verified and approved measure. In Leiden in the middle of the seventeenth century, yeast was sold in a gist-huis, or “yeast-storage house,” but numerous petitions made clear that the bakers preferred to obtain their yeast directly from the brewery."

The Dutch had apparently worked their way through all of these issues 15 or more years before Quatorze was asking the medical academics to get into the argument he was having with one of his personal doctors about whether he could eat the light fluffy bread or not (I seriously doubt that bread made with brewers' yeast was where Quatorze's diet needed to be modified. But I wasn't there, now was I?).
Tags: history
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