Mike the Mad Biologist

Archives for September, 2010

Why, yes, I did. For a while now, I’ve been writing about how improper paperwork could completely screw up the foreclosure process. While I’ve never thought foreclosure was the way to go (I wanted subsidized cramdowns), we can’t even get foreclosure to happen, which is a huge drain on the economy: Lawyers for distressed homeowners…

Learning from Real Educational Reform

A while ago, I listed what I thought made Massachusetts’ educational system work: The recent educational regression reform plan in Massachusetts and the Obama Administration’s educational proposals both seem to misunderstand what has made Massachusetts’ educational system one of the best in the world (and that does far better than would be expected by demography):…

Links 9/29/10

Big ball of fire in sky. Is it the sun? Anyway, links for you: An Open Letter: To the Awesome Speaker Getting even with the odds ratio Other: How Obama Screws His Base Paul Ryan is a Man Who Takes His Responsibilities as a Public Official Seriously Left Ed: Waiting for Sanity If the Nazis…

Cramdown and Why We Need Managed Default

Paul Krugman is absolutely correct about deleveraging: In the end, I’d argue, what must happen is an effective default on a significant part of debt, one way or another. The default could be implicit, via a period of moderate inflation that reduces the real burden of debt; that’s how World War II cured the depression.…

We Have STEM Subcrises, Not a National Crisis

A recent report bemoaning the sorry state of STEM training and education has been updated and re-released. Like most of these reports, it fits into the typical morality play of educational decline. Sadly, even bloggers I respect have bought into this. We’ll leave aside the calls for more awarding of advanced degrees in the sciences,…

Links 9/28/10

Links for you. Sciencey stuff: Four types of scientists (While I think Myers-Briggs is crap in that the underlying normally distributed data are shoehorned into binary variables, it’s a pretty funny post) Former Air Force Officers: UFOs Tampered With Nuclear Missiles (???) DNA sequencing and the Chocolate Factory Right wing propaganda machine adopts anti-vaccination stance…

Why Are We Duplicating Genome Efforts?

SEQUENCE GENOMES!!! Proflikesubstance has a very good post about PR announcements in science, which stems from the duplicated sequencing of the cacao and Tasmanian Devil genomes. What struck me is this bit: What also seems ridiculous to me is that there are TWO groups sequencing either of these genomes. I can understand the race for…

By way of The New York Times, we learn that libraries are being privatized. Having lived in more than a few places, and being the kind of guy who uses libraries regularly, I’ve usually been very happy with my local library. I go to the library, I check out books (and videos), I read the…

Links 9/27/10

A cruddy, rainy Monday. Let’s brighten things up with some links: The only chart you need to see why Obama and the Ds will slash Social Security if they can Montana woman fends off bear attack with zucchini Man without Mortgage Loses Home in Foreclosure The Method To Their Madness Testing, 1-2-3 Does Andrew O’Hehir…

When Hippies Punch Back

I’m a little late to this, but Susie Madrak asked Obama advisor David Axelrod a very important question: Madrak asked, “I’m a blogger, and I don’t know if you know this term, but are you familiar with the term hippie-punching?” There was about a 15-second pause. “Go ahead,” said Axelrod. She continued. “Liberals and bloggers…