Thursday, September 03, 2015

On A Dime

An "amazing" thing about the British tabloids/press in general is their ability to switch perspectives essentially overnight while still keeping their readership. The "migrants" were bad, until they were good. Or something.

I don't claim to know how to solve the world's problems, but I suspect that we could spend a bit less on "humanitarian bombs" and a bit more on "taking in refugees" and probably at least help a few more people than we do. I understand the urge (sometimes somewhat noble, sometimes not) to go after the bastards in charge, but ultimately the point is, supposedly, to help the people. The US is a giant country. We can take in way more refugees than we do, and the moral case for doing so doesn't even depend on the fact that we've helped to nudge them out of their homes.



The Way We Live

It is the Onion, but it isn't, really.
PHILADELPHIA—Saying it would give local youths a wider range of academic options, Philadelphia public school officials expressed high hopes Thursday for the recently opened Edison Magnet School, a new pilot initiative that caters to students who are interested in an adequate education.

Though still in its earliest experimental stages, the specialized high school has reportedly attracted students from across the city who share a desire to receive the kind of competent instruction in math, reading, and science unavailable in more traditional American classrooms.

It Feeds the Rich While it Buries the Poor

Ayn Rand's weirdo fantasies were, you know, fantasies, but at least John Galt was (in fantasy) a supergenius who invented a perpetual motion machine or something similar (hey, it's been awhile since I read it, maybe it was something to do with extracting energy from the precious bodily fluids of the great unwashed). Not sure what the other few million will do when they opt out. I'll take a chance that we can do without their mad skills.

Better Luck Next Year

No worries, the ponies will eventually arrive.
The unemployment rate is low by any historical standard at 5.3 percent. Businesses are complaining of worker shortages in industries including health care, construction and trucking. Household-name companies like Walmart and McDonald’s have announced increases to their pay for low-wage workers.

Add those together, and it would seem to point to 2015 as being the year American workers start seeing substantially larger paychecks. The only problem: There is no real evidence in the economic data that this is happening.

Better raise interest rates, just in case.
What are we doing here, that is the question. And we are blessed in this, that we happen to know the answer. Yes, in this immense confusion one thing alone is clear. We are waiting for Godot to come—

A Martyr Is Born

Wingnut welfare won't last very long, but it'll be nice while it does.
ASHLAND, Ky. — A federal judge here on Thursday ordered a Kentucky clerk jailed for contempt of court because of her refusal to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples.

It's Torture

I know I shouldn't be surprised, but I am surprised that this barbaric practice has persisted for so long. We've known for a long time that it destroys minds.

If mass incarceration is one of modern America’s deepest pathologies, solitary confinement is the concentrated version of it: far too many people locked up for far too long for no good reason, at no clear benefit to anyone.

The practice “literally drives men mad,” Justice Anthony Kennedy of the Supreme Court said in an appearance before Congress last March, highlighting the case of a California man isolated for 25 years. In July, President Obama became the first president to denounce the use of solitary. Locking people up alone for years or decades, he said, “is not going to make us safer. That’s not going to make us stronger. And if those individuals are ultimately released, how are they ever going to adapt?”

Generation Screwed

It's a bit more acute in London than most places in the US, but the basic story is the same. Education costs and student loans are crushing. There's no realistic way for people in their 20s to save money a deposit for unaffordable homes, let alone plan to start families. Their parents had it better. But The Kids Today and their unwillingness to grow up...

Wednesday, September 02, 2015

Wednesday Evening

It is Wednesday.

Trump'd

They only thing I can conclude is that "they" don't like him because he's the biggest threat to wingnut welfare, or at least its current recipients.

America's Worst Humans

Kim Davis.

Jeb "Anchor Babies" Bush

An actual paragraph appearing in the liberal New York Times.
Mr. Bush is at his most animated discussing policy. And the only thing he may be more passionate about than issues is his conviction that the Republicans must become an inclusive, big-hearted party that appeals to people’s hopes rather than their resentments.

Ask Michael Schiavo about that inclusive, big-hearted governor.

Then there's that big-hearted party and the health care of 50% of the population.
I, for one, don’t think Planned Parenthood ought to get a penny, though. And that’s the difference, because they’re not actually doing women’s health issues. They are involved in something way different than that.

Rich Guys Can't Make Other Rich Guys Look Bad

It's the 1st Law Of Rich Guys or something.
In the end even Sony, which unlike most other major studios in Hollywood has no significant business ties to the N.F.L., found itself softening some points it might have made against the multibillion-dollar sports enterprise that controls the nation’s most-watched game.

In dozens of studio emails unearthed by hackers, Sony executives; the director, Peter Landesman; and representatives of Mr. Smith discussed how to avoid antagonizing the N.F.L. by altering the script and marketing the film more as a whistle-blower story, rather than a condemnation of football or the league.

Do Not Be Mean To Football.

Mittens!

Come back!
Romney himself has become one of Trump’s most vocal detractors inside the party. “He’s someone to whom civility means a lot. The whole Trump thing really bothers him,” a close Romney adviser told me — and some Romney-ites are only too happy to talk up the prospect of their man jumping into the race if the Establishment fails to stop Trump, whose support in Iowa and New Hampshire is currently greater than Jeb Bush's, Scott Walker's, Marco Rubio's, Chris Christie's, and John Kasich's combined.

Morning Thread

Digby is not too impressed with the Pope's ruling that parish priests will be allowed to absolve women of the sin of abortion, but only if they are truly repentant. Meh.

Tuesday, September 01, 2015

Then People Won't Like Them

I'm pretty skeptical about the technology, but given all the road ragers out there, driverless cars that prioritize safety too much won't be very popular. People like the illusion of control, and they like cutting off their fellow humans due to some perceived slight.

Happy Hour?

Afternoon Thread

Busy and largely internetless at the moment. Talk amongst yourselves.

Clap Louder, Little People

Someone involved in popeocalypse plannigadmitted that they were deliberatly trying to scare people away in order to reduce attendance. Mission accomplished