Showing posts from January 22, 2006
Marcel, My Brother is a very moving article about Charles Krauthammer's brother. He is a skilled and gifted writer in matters political but the sorrow and loss in this piece are tangible and it really struck a chord with me.
IRAQ THE MODEL has the goods on a report from Iraq about the tribes in Anbar arresting/capturing 270 al-Qaeda members. I think this is more evidence that the Iraqis have cast their lot with democracy and against al-Qaeda. More please.
China admits to more unrest this year. Increasingly, the people are unwilling to work for a pittance and put up with corruption. The days of super cheap goods from China are finite. Should the cost of production in China become too high, we will see production facilities move to places like India. I, for one, would much rather see us invest in India than China. They are the world's largest democracy and the largest English speaking country in the world. We do them, and us a disservice by giving money to corrupt, oppressive governments like China. It seems hypocritical to embargo Cuba but invest like crazy in China.
I saw this list on a forum and it purports to be from Maxim magazine. I don't know if it is but it's good for a laugh. Some of these are satirical and some contain more than a kernel of truth. I leave it up to you to determine which is which.

100 Things You Need to Know About Women

100. Girls enjoy always having something kind of wrong, like a headache or cramping or something. Remember: No matter how bad it sounds, she’s going to outlive you.

99. Most women will not have sex for the first time with a guy unless their legs are shaved. If your date shows up and you spot stubble, she’s trying to keep herself in line.

98. No matter how much she reassures you, if you can’t get a hard-on she assumes you’re not attracted to her.

97. Beware of your girlfriend's single party friend or gay bud. They want her to be single with them and will encourage any bad behavior as often as possible.

96. Jewelry. Now you always knkow what to get her for a last-minute gift.

95. The sight of you in …
How bad is it to work at Wal-Mart? So bad that thousands applied for jobs at new a Wal-Mart in Illinois. Please remember this next time you hear someone complaining about the evils of Wal-Mart.
How Big Labor screwed Maryland. Will Marylanders every wake up? This is likely a boon to Delaware. They have been cited as the fallback spot for Wal-Mart's distribution center. Sadly the Eastern Shore will continue to suffer and wallow in poverty and joblessness. Other big businesses have surely kept an eye on this fiasco and will steer well clear of Maryland.
This one scared the crap out of me. It is a keen reminder of just how high the stakes are.
Andrew Sullivan has a post about B16's first encyclical. Once again Andrew demonstrates how he can be so right, and so wrong at the same time.

"I'm struck, however, by the near-complete absence in the document of the love of "amicitia," of friendship. It is far more central to the Gospel message than eros, and under-estimated in our current culture, to our great detriment."

He is dead right when he says that "amicitia" is vital and more representative of the Gospel. I think the whole concept has been in retreat since the gay rights movement became so successful. Many heterosexual men cannot properly distinguish between "eros" and "amicitia" when it comes from other men. The two are not easily distinguished nor are they discussed. Try and show a male friend platonic love and it's very likely it would be confused for something else.

"I also, obviously, share Benedict's wonder at conjugal love. I see no conflic…
How Chirac plans to deal with terrorist states. France always gets away with belligerence whenever it suits them. Playing the nuke card is no small beer. Especially in light of Iran's march toward a bomb and the internal unrest France has with their Muslim population. I think France is telegraphing their willingness to prevent Iran from going nuclear at all costs. They would never pre-emptively nuke Iran but I can see them passively, or even actively aiding the US in doing so.
The New Sisyphus as a story about the Canadian border patrol agents who flee at the sight of violent Americans. Must be the French influence on Canada.
Why is Jobs a hero and Gates a goat? Wired is asking the same question. I don't know much about Jobs but I do think the Macfreaks have set him up as some sort of demi-urge. They embrace him as much as they revile Gates. Why? The article asks some good questions. Read it.
The ladies over at E-nough have an interesting link to the "blue revolution". Could Liberte, je cris ton nom and the blue revolution join forces? Will they ever get as much traction as the truckers who shut France down every summer do?
Awful, awful, awful. Blackfive has the goods on CWO Welshofer's punishment (if you can call it that) for torturing an inmate to death. Absolutely appalling. This guy should be in prison for a very very long time. I fear they gave him a minor rip to protect those further up the chain.
The bubble bursts in Las Vegas. People think real estate is one huge market. It isn't. It's highly localized and subject wildly to local pressures. Vegas is going cold for many reasons. Not least of all is the sheer volume of space they have available. People with kids are far more likely to pull up stakes (if you'll pardon the pun) and move to the 'burbs so the kids can have space to play. I'm sure there's much more to it than that but I don't know enough about the market there to speculate.
Dean has a good post about irony .
Some new additions to the blogroll:

Delathought, Delaware Watch, No Ma'am this IS my job, Politakid and Down With Absolutes. Politically, they're all over the map but geographically, they are all First Staters. I've only recently been reading them but they all have three things my blog lacks: good content, comments and readers. Keeping this blog free of the former all but guarantees me a lack of the other two. Check them out if you haven't already.
Intersting article about how scientists are using Where's George? to develop mathmatical models for countering epidemics. Once again distributed systems rule the day! Actor Chris Penn Found Dead

Very sad. Seemed to be a stand-up guy. Never saw him in the papers acting like an ass. Talented guy and underappreciated. My first reaction was probably heart attack. Maybe drugs. Guess we'll know more after the autopsy.
This article touches on a theme that is a recurrent one with me. Undoubtedly, there is a widening gap between the performance of boys and girls in schools especially over time. By the time High School, the gap is widest. I don't this issue is as simplistic as blaming the schools for punishing boys for being boys. I think that may be a factor but not the deciding one. Herewith is my list of things that I think are contributing factors:

1. Dramatic increase in the number of fatherless households
2. Dramatic decrease in the number of male teachers
3. Teaching digital age kids with 18th century technolgy, tools and methods
4. Punishing boys for being boys
5. Coeducational classrooms
6. Keeping kids in school until they graduate from high school
7. Social promotion
8. The demise of vocational schools
9. Popular culture presenting thugs and gangsters as the model of manliness
10. Parent involvement in schools and child's education.

I'm sure there are more but those are a goo…
I once again take up the bat to beat my favorite dead horse. The future of entertainment. To wit, this article in Variety about studios backing off of production volume for major releases. The article states that the market is oversatured and is currently exceeding consumer demand. I think that is partly right but mostly wrong. Consumers are fed up with the films being offered with exceptions. Studios ignore that the highest grossing films tend to be family films and smaller, less costly productions. The former makes money from sheer volume and the latter makes money from lower production costs which yields higher profits. Take The Chronicles of Narnia and March of the Penguins as examples. Narnia was designed to be a grand sweeping epic and family friendly. March Of The Penguins was made, as documentaries are, on the cheap and with limited market expectations. However, the movie struck a chord with people the world over. It is exceptionally well made and Morgan Freeman…
Thanks to Hube for the link to the blogroll. I'm sort of cringing b/c I didn't ask for a link. Largely b/c my blog, well, sucks. I seldom update the thing and what I put on here is more linking than thinking. I hope to change that. Fortunately, my sitemeter tells me there's nobody reading this anyway so it hardly matters. However, if you've stopped over from Rhodey's place, welcome.