Archives for December, 2009

Health care now

Kevin Drum is right. As sucky as the current Senate bill is, it’s a marked improvement over the status quo ante and it gives a path to more reforms later. Failing to pass a bill (as advocated by some progressive leaders) is suicide. Democratic voters are already demoralized from all the compromise, and outright failure…

A promise

I currently have ~400 RSS feeds in NetNewsWire. That is too many. By the end of the month, I’ll have half that, with a goal of being below 100 feeds by the end of January. If you are one of those left out, sorry. Hopefully someone else will link to you and thereby bring you…

The AP reports In North Carolina, Lawsuit Is Threatened Over Councilman’s Lack of Belief in God: Detractors of [recently elected city councilman Cecil] Bothwell… are threatening to take the city to court for swearing him in last week, even though the state’s antiquated requirement that officeholders believe in God is unenforceable because it violates the…

Intelligent falling, redux

A few weeks ago, the makers of water-rocket launcher the Aquapod sent me a review copy of their device. It’s a plastic tripod with a bike pump nozzle and a pressure valve to prevent your pressurized water bottle from exploding on the launch pad. A string and simple latch hold the bottle in place, and…

Some thoughts on programming

Janet Stemwedel brings her expertise in science and science ethics to bear on the contents of the emails stolen from the University of East Anglia. As with all of her work, the whole thing is worth reading, but I want to pick up on this claim: If you don’t thoroughly document your code, no one…

The stupids

Blogging has been scant here of late for two reasons. First, I’ve got enough going on that blogging time is limited, and I don’t have a lot I need to get off my chest. Second, the world is currently utterly dominated by the stupids. The climate change treaty negotiations at Copenhagen, which should be a…

Analogies

TalkingPointsMemo notes an odd simile, using the headline: Tom Friedman Compares Afghanistan To “Special Needs Baby”. Friedman told Fareed Zakaria: This is nation building. This is nation building 101 in the most fragmented country in the world. Fareed, we’re talking about Afghanistan. And we’re talking about America in the middle of the great recession. I…

The Russia That Was: Bring back the Tsar! Honestly.

Public option gets 60 votes!

Or it would if the Senate actually represented the American public. According to a Thomson Reuters poll: Sixty percent of survey respondents said they believe a public option should be included in final healthcare reform legislation. Despite overwhelming support, wankers like erstwhile healthcare reform advocate Joe Lieberman, Mary Landrieu, Ben Nelson, Blanche Lincoln, and Susan…

Last night’s speech wasn’t one of Obama’s greatest hits. Kevin Drum’s assessment seems basically right quoting Adam Serwer’s line that “It was a speech that reflected the president deciding on what is maybe the least crappy of a number of crappy options — without convincingly explaining how it would work” and adding: There are two…