Monday, June 17, 2024

End of Week Miscellany

“I thought you had the day off yesterday.”
“I did!  I went in to pick up my check, came home, my supervisor called me about four o’clock.  Told me he got me on tape, doing a link dump.”

  • King of all Arkansas media, Roby Brock, writes about lawmakers’ responses to Gov. Beebe’s State of the State address earlier this week.  The money quote comes from House Minority Leader John Burris (R-85): “I thought he made a lot of good points. He’s right when he says if we want to cut taxes, we have to pay for it.”  I sincerely hope this means that Burris opposes, say, Rep. Ed Garner’s ridiculously terrible bill to cut capital gains taxes.
  • Content partner Jason Tolbert details the intricacies of just how open to new technologies this session of the legislature is likely to be.  Says Tolbert regarding Rep. Clark Hall’s statement that cell phones and Twitter were not to be used during committee meetings: “Either Rep. Hall does not understand the importance of this technology for bloggers and those following the legislative process or he is intentionally trying to make our task more difficult.”
  • Steve Brawner offers up his thoughts on the tragedy in Tuscon, and it’s hard to disagree with much of anything in this paragraph:

    The problem is the attitude that dehumanizes anyone that doesn’t agree with one’s side 100 percent, and yes, both sides are equally at fault. It’s the attitude that accuses President Bush of plotting 9-11. That turns President Obama into a “Muslim socialist who wants the terrorists to win.” That sells a book defining conservatives as “The American Taliban.” That calls someone “The Worst Person in the World.” (I’m sure they’re not.) That spends three hours on the radio and all day on television inflaming passions and mischaracterizing the other side. That defines “real Americans” as those who vote properly. That separates the coasts from the heartland and red from blue.

  • Ed of Gin & Tacos offers a different take on the Tuscon shootings and, specifically, the bystander who came running toward the scene only because he had a gun, too:

    Among right wingers, the “saves the day with guns” fantasy has cured more unresponsive penises throughout the years than all of the Viagra in the world. While it’s commendable that he (and other unarmed bystanders) intervened, [Joe] Zamudio is the prototype of the self-certified, self-trained, self-appointed vigilante who dreams of blazing away at the bad guys but in reality can only produce one of three outcomes:

    1. Vigilante shoots the assailant. Victory parades are held in his honor.
    2. Vigilante shoots additional victims, either through poor aim or mistaken identity.
    3. Vigilante is shot by the real cops who arrive to find some idiot in street clothes blazing away like John Woo is directing him.

    One of those three is a positive outcome, and it is arguably the least likely one by far.

  • ThinkProgress takes a quick look at Tim Pawlenty’s “fix” for Social Security. His plan? To “correlate” your retirement with your life expectancy. “Pawlenty never used the words ‘raise the retirement age,’ but ‘correlate your retirement…to life expectancy’ means precisely the same thing. Like Daniels (and many others on both ends of the political spectrum), Pawlenty is relying on a faulty understanding of America’s increasing life expectancy to push a regressive cut in Social Security that will disproportionately impact those most in need of the program.”
  • Swampland offers a fascinating post on potentially mapping the genome of American military personnel to create a more war-resistant force. “The December study…says genetic markers could help build a military force resistant to ‘battlefield stress, including post-traumatic stress disorder, the ability to tolerate conditions of sleep deprivation, dehydration, or prolonged exposure to heat, cold, or high altitude, or the susceptibility to traumatic bone fracture, prolonged bleeding, or slow wound healing.'”
  • In /facepalm news, the world’s smallest Wal-Mart has opened on the campus of the University of Arkansas. Woo Pig, Sooiee Always!
  • Krugman comments on a post by Brad DeLong and comes to an interesting conclusion: Google needs sex.

I’m going to be writing some stuff over the weekend that will post early next week when real life (read: work) has me too busy to do much during the day. So, until then, vaya con queso.

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