Monthly Archives: April 2009

Of the Character of one Mr. Brownlow

From There’s Pippins And Cheese To Come, by Charles S. Brooks (Yale University Press, 1917) By some slim chance, reader, you may be the kind of person who, on a visit to a strange city, makes for a bookshop. … … Continue reading

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Speaking of Hate

I really hate that the rhetoric of liberty is perverted in the service of illiberal causes. And I hate this not just because of the hypocrisy of it. I hate this because now that the language of liberty is indeliably … Continue reading

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On the Nature of Power

Like electricity in the grid, use it or lose it.

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Bobby Dunbar

I’m listening again to This American Life‘s story “The Ghost of Bobby Dunbar.” The story is remarkably affecting, sad, and hard to imagine. [This paragraph intentionally left blank in a moment of silence.] But didn’t the DNA test simply demonstrate … Continue reading

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What, Me Worry? I’ve Done Nothing Wrong.

One thing I’ve never quite understood is how advocates for expansive government power never quite seem able to imagine themselves as being on the unpleasant receiving end of that power. Take, for example, Michelle Malkin, who has been a vocal … Continue reading

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Footprint per Capita

The newspaper had a map of each country’s carbon footprint per person. Something like this one from Wikipedia. This is one of those graphics that misleads with statistics. The U.S. seems top of the charts here, but one has to … Continue reading

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Faded Memories

All I remember of one of the few records I owned as a child is a line that ended one of the songs. Save your Confederate credit cards. The South’s gonna rise again. For some reason that stuck with me. … Continue reading

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What Benefit are Wire Services in a Well-Connected World?

As a former employee of The Associated Press, it’s been somewhat embarrassing to watch their plodding attempts to control data which has already escaped from their control. I recall some discussions with graphics and photo editors in 1996 or so … Continue reading

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Statistical Enquiry of the Devil’s Playground

Certain laws and regulations, and policies related to those, have a non-trivial impact on statistics which are not normally thought of in concert with those laws. For example, mandatory sentencing increases incarceration rates, which in turn will decrease the employable … Continue reading

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Like, but not totally unlike, Useful

IBM has a way of making software that looks like it would be really helpful and of great utility — if it didn’t totally suck. Stick to hardware, guys.

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New York City Department of Kafka

What the fuck? We hear from New York City school teachers about a secret room in the New York City Board of Education building. Teachers are told to report there, and when they arrive, they find out they’re under investigation … Continue reading

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Where Have All the People Gone?

… long time passing … This video comparison of Barcelona in 1908 and in 2008 by Fotos de Barcelona is striking, and not just in the differences in the built environment. What I find most striking, and disturbing, is the … Continue reading

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Suppose that I go to Vegas to gamble. Further suppose that someone gives me $100, which I then increase to $1000 at the slot machines. Further suppose that I wander over to the roullette wheel, where I proceed to lose … Continue reading

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