Sunday, January 31, 2010

The real threat to children: Homophobia

Great piece by Rob Tisinai:

Great blurbs, especially near the end. Well done.

Friday, January 29, 2010

Anatomy of a TV news segment


GOP still seeking a soul...

The GOP apparently uses "deficit reduction" as a talking point rather than a policy direction. Not one Republican Senator voted to re-impose pay-as-you-go rules for budget outlays.

Not one. Jesus. This was a straight vote on this issue without any amendments or earmarks.

This is like Republicans complaining about abortion, the Dems offering to outlaw all third trimester abortions, and for all Republicans to vote against it.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Anyone with a paid off HUD loan?

You might be eligible for a refund of a portion of the insurance premium. Not much (mine, from a loan we paid off 7 years ago, was worth $19.22), but maybe worth a look:

search page

RNS looking for average working beachfront families...

RNC a little embarrassed at the location for their winter meeting: Waikiki, Hawai'i

Another boneheaded Michael Steele idea! Long live Michael Steele!

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

How can I reuse...?

UK website recyclethis has some good ideas (before you throw that thing away).

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Jon Stewart--again!

He gets in a series of body blows with his response to Keith Olbermann's Malkin Moment.

Most union members working for the government

I think this is more of an indication of just how badly the private sector, particularly in traditional blue collar jobs, have fallen off the table. But I think this might also be an indication that unions need to be far, far more flexible than they traditionally have been with regard to their confrontational, "single pie" style of recruitment, retention, and negotiation.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

SCOTUS pokes a big hole in campaign finance laws

SCOTUS rules that campaign finance laws are a violation of free speech rights when applied to corporations. They overturned two of their own rulings in doing so.

Wish I had time right now to drill down into this issue again. Big news. My top-of-the-head response is:

-it won't be long before individuals are excepted for the same reasons, thereby trashing campaign finance laws (for good or ill).

-the Administration will propose to disallow corporate political spending from being tax deductible.

More to come, I'm sure.

Guess who is not going to the dance?

HT: This Photo Bomb

With friends like these...

Couple busted after stealing credit card of friend--who had died on their couch.

"She would have wanted us to..."


Monday, January 18, 2010

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Weird books

Sure, you're a book lover. But have you read any of these?

The Joy of Cooking

Great piece on an amazing book. In a former life I worked at Macmillan Pubishing Company, who published this work after purchasing the old Bobbs-Merrill Publishing Company, and I handled requests to reprint recipes and other material from this work. Sometimes I'd get requests from obviously poor women who were copying recipes out of a library copy of the book and wanted permission to do so. The fact that these people were doing so (and writing to be) was sometimes heartbreaking. I guess it is OK to say so now, but I used to snag extra copies of the book and send them out to those people, usually anonymously.

Still have a copy of the 1975 edition of the book that I use all the time.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Scott Ritter is coming to my county!

You remember--former UN weapons inspector, who took a lot of flack from the Bush Administration because of Ritter's insistence that Iraq had no WMD.

He's not coming for a lecture-- he was busted in a sting for guys trolling for underage girls.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Google backing out of China?

Google took some heat for their deal several years ago with China, to set of a version of their search engine which filtered web sites that the government did not want to be viewed from their country. It looks like they might be pulling out of the country now, however, but not because of the free speech/libertarian arguments originally made against them.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Kerouac will forged?


Pretty sad that the guy who probably should have had millions has been homeless for years.

When moralists crash

They crash hard. This one could bring down the Northern Ireland government.

Obama limits secrecy classifiers

Good news, this. Not as good as other news, but I'll take it.

Tuesday, January 05, 2010

Making up crap, Tiger Woods "journalists" version

I guess when academics spend a lot of time following a non-academic story, they need to make up an academic-sounding reason:

Tiger Woods costs shareholders billions! Or not...

Health care cost vs life expectancy

A neat-o graph:

Essentially, the life expentancy rises in an almost lineal fashion with health care spending. Except for the United States, which is the outlier.

Some of the debate is here. There is some debate as to whether life expectancy is a good measure of things, that this comment rebuts rather neatly:

Certainly life expectancy isn't a perfect measure of a country's health care system, but saying that it shouldn't be used as a measure is like saying a sports team's win-loss record doesn't reflect the team's talent. At the end of the day all of the other statistics are meaningless if we come up short in the ultimate measure of success (in this case life expectancy).

I agree with you that other factors are involved, but why wouldn't obesity and teenage pregnancy be considered aspects of a country's health care system. A health care system should promote a healthy lifestyle, not just save us from an unhealhty one.