Friday, October 8, 2010


In the New York Times this am, David Brooks writes something that is either a fact free sociological discussion of Harvard's student body or a his attempt to use the Times' op-ed space to audition for role of the world's most pompous movie reviewer.

Meanwhile at the Washington Post, Dinesh D'Souza gets to reprise his assault on reality.

What is the point?

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Robert Foster and Newt Gingrich Have Trouble reading

Today one misunderstood the difference between reporting and putting:
Turning to a little political shop talk, I ask Gingrich about many Republicans’ concern that a senior official in the Obama administration may have, as the New York Times puts it, “improperly accessed the tax records of Koch Industries, an oil company whose owners are major conservative donors.” Gingrich says such an action by a White House official would be “very much like the Nixon White House: If you cross these guys, they try to hurt you. They have brought a Chicago-machine mentality to the White House for the first time in American history, and it’s very, very dangerous.”
From his own link to the NY Times:
Leading Republicans are suggesting that a senior official in the Obama administration may have improperly accessed the tax records of Koch Industries, an oil company whose owners are major conservative donors.
See what he did there?  The New York Times, apparently, is identical with "leading Republicans."
Where did the nefarious Obama Administration get the super secret information? It's not exactly new information, they got it from, among others, Koch Industries' Webpage.

As a bonus matter:
House speaker Nancy Pelosi (D., Calif.) slammed Gingrich’s document on Wednesday, calling it a “subliminal message” and an “unfortunate course to go down,” before adding that the government gets “the biggest bang for the buck when you do food stamps and unemployment insurance — the biggest bang for the buck.” Gingrich tells NRO that Pelosi “doesn’t understand anything about how free markets, entrepreneurship, and small businesses operate.”
“She thinks that this is all bad luck,” he says. “With regards to her comment that food stamps are actually an effective way to stimulate the economy, well, I don’t know any economist who would agree with that. It shows you how inaccurate they are about the very nature of the American economy.” Gingrich contends that Democrats’ economic policies are worse than those of Herbert Hoover.
Real economists:
The industry research firm Moody's tracked the potential impact of each stimulus dollar, looking at tax rebates, tax incentives for business, food stamps and expanding unemployment benefits.
The report found that "some provide a lot of bang for the buck to the economy. Others ... don't," said economist Mark Zandi.
In findings echoed by other economists and studies, he said the study shows the fastest way to infuse money into the economy is through expanding the food-stamp program. For every dollar spent on that program $1.73 is generated throughout the economy, he said.
And so on.


Tyler Cowen writes concerning the fire department kerfuffle:
They wouldn't even let him pay up ex post.  David notes that this is a government-run fire department and thus the story is not much of a moral reductio on the market.  Arguably a private company would behave the same way, sometimes, but it 's odd to claim that government failure reminds you market failure is possible and so let's damn the market.  By the way, markets do pretty well at setting up schemes with a penalty for late payment; that's how my mortgage works.
The reason this failure by a state agency is used as a "moral reductio on the market" is that the state agency was acting like a for profit enterprise when it collected subscriptions for service, instead of acting like a state agency funded by an equitable tax on all those who potentially need protection from fire.

It is odd for proponents of smaller states and market solutions for the provision of social goods to insist that the results of smaller states and market solutions for the provisions of social goods aren't the fault of smaller states and market solutions for the provision of social goods. Kind of like the Dilemma of Franklin's Pickle, if you are too blinkered by your idealization of smaller states and market solutions for the provision of social goods that you can't see that smaller states and market solution for the provision of social goods leads to having your house burn down when you haven't paid the subscription,  idealization of your argument has blinded you to the the implication of your argument.

Let's call this one the Glibertarian Conundrum.

Does America, in Fact, Have Talent

As if giving away free stuff isn't enough Craig's List now comes with video:

Who knew you could study accordion in college.

History is Not His Strongest Suit

Matt Yglesisas is shocked to find Christians in the so-called Holy Land, until he thinks for second. What's that book?  The Bible or something, isn't it?  Where does the action take place?  Aren't all kinds of Christians really invested in Israel's continued existence?  Don't famous people lead yearly tours of the so-called Holy Land?

Can it honestly be the case that this guy comments on world affairs, including the prospects for peace in the Middle East and he has not idea who the interested parties are?

In Defense of Punctuation

Recently a NYTimes reporter reported on the Tea Partiers' intellectual lineage.  In the course of this she quoted Ron Johnson, who is running to be the new and infinitely incompetent Senator of the this great State, who
asserted that the $20 billion escrow fund that the Obama administration forced BP to set up to pay damages from the Gulf of Mexico oil spill circumvented “the rule of law,” Hayek’s term for the unwritten code that prohibits the government from interfering with the pursuit of “personal ends and desires.”
Various Conservatives and Gliberatarians jumped to the conclusion that the reporter reporting Johnson's remarks doesn't know what the rule of law, let alone Hayek's view of it, is.  I wonder how it is they arrive at this conclusion. The false claim that the 20 billion escrow fund violates the rule of law comes from Johnson; it was he who introduced the phrase "rule of law"; we have no reason to think the next quote isn't from Johnson.  While it's true that he is a manufacturer and an accountant, his views on punishing child abusers and climate change aren't examples of a man who can think things through. Indeed, the garbled definition of the rule of law reads exactly like what someone who has never thought about the rule of law or read Hayek might end up burbling.  Johnson is, after all, a Tea Partier and their intellectual leader is Glenn Beck, a man who never lets an opportunity to misrepresent the past by garbling and misrepresenting quotations and ideas pass him by.

The punctuation mark defended here, I should have been clear, is the coma.  Comas link things to previous things, like the individual expressing an idea to the idea's content.  Periods, on the other and, mark the end of sentence, after which the speaker might change.

Here is Kate Zernike reporting on McCain's and Obama's response to a supreme court ruling.  She quotes Obama as praising the because it is
re-establishing our credibility as a nation committed to the rule of law, and rejecting a false choice between fighting terrorism and respecting habeas corpus.
She doesn't add any odd definitions here.

Here she quotes Bush to the effect that
Saddam Hussein’s trial is a milestone in the Iraqi people’s efforts to replace the rule of a tyrant with the rule of law.
Again no odd interpretation added.

I'll ask, who do you think made the error? Zernike or Johnson?  My money's on the manufacturer and accountant because, after all, only a lawyer would care about the rule of law.

Here she quotes Maliwki:
Iraq will not forget those who stood with her and continue to stand with her in times of need,” he told Congress. “We have gone from mass graves and torture chambers and chemical weapons to the rule of law and human rights.
 Here she provides a quote that modifies the rule of law
'There's the rule of law, and there's the rule of law in Texas,'' said Rob Martin, a 38-year-old resident in neurosurgery who had come to watch the trial today. ''The rule of law in Texas is kind of cowboy law."
It's very hard to believe that she doesn't know what the rule of law is; and it is very easy to believe that Ron Johnson doesn't.

Read the Damn Book

Recently folks have complained about having to read badly written "great books." The general argument here is wrong on, at least, two fronts.  In the first instance, it elevates important books, like "The Structure of Scientific Revolutions" to the category of great books. Great books are great books because they are both well written and important. Really they are. Even Hegel, who people like to find impenetrable isn't if your willing to do the work necessary to understand him, and, as by the way, I've never understood the bias against Kant as prose stylist.  In the second instance, it assumes that if you read accounts of a great or important book you get more than you need to know about the original argument.

The second problem is the more pernicious.  Take Burke's "Reflections on the Revolution in France," please. It's clear that Burke was aware of the book's problems; he thought that it was sprawling, undisciplined and difficult to read.  And it is sprawling, undisciplined and hard to read.  You can read all manner of explications of Burke's argument, given that it's supposed to be a foundational document of modern Conservatism. But none of these take the place of actually reading this badly written but important book.  It is not the case that reading Burke is "character building" but rather it is the case that if you read the book Burke's contempt for all of the diverse actors in the French Revolution become clear, as does his absolute abhorrence of folks getting above their station; to say nothing about his willful refusal to accept the political, social, and economic incoherence of old regime France. 

Some of the interpretations of Burke are going to make this argument; the question, however, is which ones and how to know if you got the right one. Reading  Burke takes a deal of time and deal of patience. If you persevere, you would be in the position of understanding the extent to which a foundational text of modern Conservatism relied on strawmen and manifold misrepresentations of reality.  Assuming, of course, you done some work on the multifarious actors and stages of the French Revolution, which is to say the key to understanding Burke is to first read about the French Revolution and then you could see how Burke misrepresented things to make his larger polemical points. In other words, dismissing important books because they are badly written is to reduce a book's importance to its author's argument instead of trying to figure out if argument has any basis in reality.  This is true for primary and secondary sources.  Understanding a text, issue, or event requires more than understanding arguments about a text, issue, or event: it requires understanding the text, issue, or event.

This is, of course, a lot of work. However, doing a lot of work in an attempt to understand complicated texts,  issues, or events is well worth the effort and claiming the opposite is evidence of laziness and willful stupidity.  Refusing to engage texts, issues, or events on this level, which is to say taking them seriously, is evidence of a general intellectual morbidity.

On the other hand, you could read a great thinker without knowing anything about anything and write stunningly stupid things. Like this:
The first thing I noticed was that a lot of Franklin’s folksy little gems were a bit on the obvious side, the sort of things anyone but an outright idiot would already know. For example, who needs to have explained to him that an innocent plowman is more worthy than a vicious prince? Who exactly would be unaware that to be proud of virtue is to poison oneself with the antidote? Who but a knucklehead would fail to appreciate that experience keeps a dear school, yet fools will learn in no other? And who needs to be told that vice puts on her mask precisely because she knows she’s ugly?
Take point the first, every Burkean idiot who argued that hereditary  monarchy is better than democratic republics needed to know this.  Take point the second, every Pharisee of whatever religion who disdained the Publican needs to know this. Take point the the third,consider the history bankruptcy in these United States of America. And so on. Franklin's points weren't silly and obvious when he wrote them. They might be silly and obvious now, if you ignore all the people who continue to do exactly what Franklin condemned, but they weren't in the late 18th century.

Consider as well that folks who want to claim that great books are badly written often don't understand that words' meanings change over time:
But a surprising number made no sense whatsoever. For example, why would anyone think that “hunger is the best pickle”?
Because Franklin's pickle wasn't a kosher dill; it was a relish and being hungry makes the least appetizing food taste better in the same way that a decent relish improves the taste of a hot dog.

On the other hand, you could make glib comments about the worthlessness of primary sources because the Idiots Guide is so much more pithy.  Let's call this the Dilemma of Franklin's Pickle: people too bone lazy to do the work necessary to understand the text, event, or issue under consideration will deprecate the work necessary to understand the text, event, or issue under consideration because they are bone lazy.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Stop Not Stopping

League of American Bicyclists on motorists who kill
Our plea to the residents of Tampa, especially those behind the wheel of a motor vehicle, is to stop treating cyclists like animals. The callous disregard for human life shown by the driver who won’t even stop when they hit someone is inexcusable; as is the level of vitriol towards cyclists on display in the on-line newspaper comments that follow every such incident. We understand that many cyclists flout the rules of the road and that such behavior is irritating – the organized bicycling community, including the League, tries hard to change that dynamic through our education and club programs. But not only are the recent deaths NOTHING to do with cyclist misbehavior, the last victim was on the sidewalk when they were hit by a car involved in a red-light running crash.
And there you have it.  I would say that some cyclists flout the rules rather than many, and I would say that all motorists break the rules of the road on daily basis, especially speeding.

Not So Much Crazy as a Fantasist

Fred Clark:
O'Donnell says:
I was dabbling in witchcraft, I've dabbled in Buddhism. I would have become a Hare Krishna but I didn't want to become a vegetarian. And that is honestly the reason why -- because I'm Italian, I love meatballs!
To understand this bizarre, and untrue, statement, you have to understand the peculiar place that Hare Krishnas hold in the rhetoric of America's evangelical Christian subculture. "Hare Krishna" doesn't refer, specifically or literally, to the belief system that bears this name. It's a shorthand signifier representing something like "every other possible alternative that anyone could imagine."
As with her claim to have "dabbled into" a Warnke-esque form of Satanism, O'Donnell is here embellishing her "personal testimony" in an attempt to make it seem more compelling, more exciting and more authoritative. This kind of runaway exaggeration is encouraged in the evangelical subculture by giving such dramatic testimonies a more enthusiastic response than is generally provided to the more honest and accurate, but blander, sort of testimony that begins, "I've been attending this church my whole life ..."
There is much more at the link and well worth reading.  These last couple of his posts make clear the extent to which O'Donnell is unfit for office.  What is shocking is the extent to which Delaware agrees.

Empty Threat?

Alberto Contador is under suspicion of doping on two fronts. In response, he threatens to quit cycling if he is found guilty. If only the banksters had the same sense of propriety.  Greg Lemond, as by the way, took the news of Contador's alleged doping as an opportunity to smear Lance Armstrong and Co:
I can’t believe how many people have left a certain team and then gone positive
It makes perfect sense, while with LA and Co, Contador never tested positive now that he is no longer with LA and Co and tests positive it just goes to show that LA and Co are the guilty parties.


More on the advantages accruing to workers and others because of Obama's reform of health insurance industry.
In 2014, however, the choice for McDonald’s workers will no longer be between a bad policy and no policy. Through the exchanges, they will be able to buy a real health insurance plan — one that covers cancer, heart attacks, surgeries, M.R.I.’s and hospital stays. Dr. Carroll notes that many families will end up paying less than they are now paying out of pocket and will get more access to care, too.

For insurance companies, these changes won’t be quite so positive. They will no longer be able to sell plans that devote 30 percent of revenue to salaries for their workers. They will not be allowed to compete over which company can come up with the most ingenious ways to say no to the sick. Their benefits and prices will become more public, thanks to the exchanges.

Well, Here's a Surprise

Rich Sanchez apologizes for any "offense" arsing from his "inartful" comments about bigotry and Jews running the media.  Who knows, it may even be heartfelt.

I'm Not An Android Kinda Guy

Or Iphone, for that matter, but go here to get the latest on the BikeDoctor application for both.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Free Riders

Everybody in the known universe has weighed in on the case of
Gene Cranick, a rurual homeowner in Obion County, Tennessee. Cranick hadn’t forked over $75 for the subscription fire protection service offered to the county’s rural residents, so when firefighters came out to the scene, they just stood there, with their equipment on the trucks, while Cranick’s house burned to the ground.
And, as is often the case, various morons have tried to defend fire departments not putting out fires because of a failure to pay 75 dollars on the grounds of glibertarian nonsense, I'd just like to remind the world, who might think we Americans have lost our minds, that a truly great American once argued that
Suppose my neighbor's home catches fire, and I have a length of garden hose four or five hundred feet away. If he can take my garden hose and connect it up with his hydrant, I may help him to put out his fire. Now, what do I do? I don't say to him before that operation, "Neighbor, my garden hose cost me $15; you have to pay me $15 for it." What is the transaction that goes on? I don't want $15--I want my garden hose back after the fire is over.
He then went on to win WWII over the objections of right wing nut jobs who hated democracy. Were he alive today and were he confronted with the stupidity of a fire department on the scene refusing to put out a fire and, it seems, allowing dogs and a cat to die, his response is easy to imagine. That anyone anywhere defends the fire department's failure to act is a condemnation of their commitment to real America.

Read the whole of the link for FDR. It really very good.

Horrific Historical Analogies

An alert non-commentator alertly alerted me to this exchange between Obama and some random crooks and malefactors of great wealth.  In response to increase regulation and potential changes in tax rates
Blackstone CEO Steve Schwarzman had the nerve to say this:
"It's a war," Schwarzman said on the struggle with the administration over increasing taxes on private-equity firms. "It's like when Hitler invaded Poland in 1939."
When Hitler and his henchmen invaded Poland, they rounded up and began murdering Polish intellectuals, Jews, and others they deemed of being unworthy of life.  Obama proposes increasing tax rates by some small percentage or another. Clearly, the two situations are analogous, which is to say they aren't. 

French Funk.

This band is,apparently, French or the lead singer is.

Here's another video

Why Johnny Won't Read

Matt Yglesias thinks, if you want to call it that, that not reading "great books" that are "terribly written" is a good idea because, inter alia
now thanks to the glories of the Internet, I’ve gotten Brad DeLong’s explanation of the Keynesian account of the Great Depression which was much, much clearer to me than trying to read Keynes.
Why no links?  If the DeLong piece or pieces is/are so good and so much clearer than Keynes why not send a host of readers there? Here, by the way, is Keynes "General Theory," so you can judge for yourself the difficulties reading it might entail; here's a bunch of DeLong's posts on economics and the depression, so you can compare and contrast.

He does, however, allow that
it’s worth wrestling with some major works on your own for character-building reasons. And a few great thinkers are also really good prose stylists. But in many ways, I think the “poorly written great book” is the rule rather than the exception. 

The puzzling thing here is that this guy, who is supposed to be some kind of serious public intellectual, just claimed that great books he never read aren't worth reading because someone else explained what the great books' authors argued better than the great books' authors could, or more precisely better than Yglesias could have figured out on his own because great books are badly written, which is to say: he can't read very well. It seems to me that it's worth reading great books to figure out for yourself if what the secondary sources argued the primary sources argued is, in fact, what the primary source argued. It's not just the obvious dopiness that rankles, it's the lack of intellectual curiosity that baffles.

Regulations Drive Innovations

I am currently wearing some Levi's and now intend on going out and buying more:
We incorporate innovation in everything from new product finishes to the way we remodeled our home office building. From our new Levi’s® Curve ID jeans for women – based on fit, not size – to how we encourage consumers to save energy by washing their clothes in cold water and hanging them to dry.
It’s about going forward, not backward; leading, not following.
That’s why we oppose a proposition on the California ballot this November.
Proposition 23 would eliminate critical tools recently put in place to promote energy efficiency. It would discourage energy and climate innovation by making it more expensive for businesses to invest in necessary research and development. It would turn back the clock by removing incentives intended to move us ahead.
Four years ago, lawmakers here passed a law – the Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006 (AB 32) – that helped promote the clean technology industry and clean energy businesses. Even if you don’t live here, you stand to benefit – just as people everywhere benefited from the technological advances of the high-tech boom, which was largely centered in California. And just as we in California benefit from forward thinking elsewhere.
Prop 23 would essentially halt the benefits of California’s innovative climate change law. To me, that’s backward thinking. And it’s not the kind we support at Levi Strauss & Co.

Words! Words! I'm Sick of Words and Their Meanings.

Andrew Sullivan is a silly man.  He once insisted that opponents of the the Invasion, who he labeled 

"[t]he decadent Left in its enclaves on the coasts is not dead . . .may well mount what amounts to a fifth column" (part one, part two).  Then, he wrote this:   "[W]e might as well be aware of the enemy within the West itself - a   paralyzing, pseudo-clever, morally nihilist fifth column that will   surely ramp up its hatred in the days and months ahead."

The  internal links no longer work for me, and one can understand why.  If  you or I had written something that monumentally silly, stupid, and mean  spirited the desire to scrub it would be irresistible.  Sullivan has  since equivocated and sort of recanted.  He continues his campaign to prove that Sarah Palin is actually a character in East Enders, and yet people  link to Sullivan without pointing out that this man is profoundly silly.

Remember the debate on torture? Sullivan, shockingly, was right on that one. What I have in mind here, however, is the argument the pro-torture camp used.  It went something like this: what is torture anyhow? Torture opponents, which is to say reasonable and decent human beings, got bogged down in this semantic turn. Today, because of Obama's go ahead to assassinate Anwar al-Awlaki, a US citizen actively engaged in fighting against US troops, Sullivan launched an attack on the use of assassinate as the proper term when the state in engages in assassination.  He would rather use the phrase "killed in wartime" which is his "plain English word." Obviously killed in wartime isn't a word; it's a phrase.  And, more importantly, its a phrase that obscures reality.  Does the President have the legal right to assassinate American citizens actively fighting against US troops?  I have no idea, but there is something queasy-making about the idea, and Sullivan's desire to obscure this reality lies behind the move to turn the debate over the legality and moral consequence of giving or approving this Presidential power into a discussion of the appropriateness of the word assassination.

Sullivan also writes, concerning the tactical, operational, and political problems, errors and grotesqueness growing out the current war on terrorism and other related nouns that:

I have  had only a few days to chew on these complicated eddies some more, but  have ended up closer to where I started than I first thought I would in  the full blast of criticism.)

I'm not sure you can chew on a eddy, and if you have to create an obfuscatory phrase to justify a policy of assassination, it's more likely than not that you're wrong.  Again. And, as by the way, you don't unleash "warfare" whose awesome power does this and that.  You mobilize your military and then send young, middle-aged, and old men and women to go kill people knowing full well that some horrible things will happen and if you failed to chew these eddies when you cheer led the Invasion, then you're not really not being serious.

Link fixed.

Link really fixed

Monday, October 4, 2010

Lies My Opponent Told Me

Sharron Angle lies about her record; Harry Reid reports on the lies Sharron Angle told; Sharron Angle accuses Harry Reid of lying because he accurately recounted her lies about her record. How can you not vote for her?

Plus her father may or may not be Bozo.

Hating on Progress

There is only so much oil in the world.  One method of moving forward is to create a reliable transportation system that eschews cars. Republicans reject trains because? Shut up, that's why. The way we do things is unsustainable.  We need to do something different.  But we won't because?  Shut up, that's why.  What are Republicans positive policies?  They have none, other than cut taxes, services, etc.  It is really beyond belief.

Seriously Silly

Recently CNN anchor/reporter/other Rick Sanchez called Jon Stewart a bigot and intimated that Jews control the media. CNN fired Sanchez and most rational and/or decent people agreed that he ought to be fired.Yglesias, as is his wont, weighed in and got all contrarian. He sighingly accepts that
[a]s someone who’s both Cuban and Jewish, I suppose it’s my duty to say something about Rick Sanchez, namely that summarily firing him seems excessive.
He is weighing in because of his ethnicity, although I think he meant something like Cuban-American but, who knows?, maybe he is a Cuban national. Who knows.

In any event, he quickly turns the discussion to one of inside the business of journalism rather than the morals and ethics of firing anti-Semites, or -- in any event -- a guy who got fired for making anti-Semitic remarks. Yglesias argues that
[i]f . . . we assume that CNN didn’t have some other reason to fire him. Obviously, the company is within its rights to decide that an anchor is underperforming and then, when he does something offensive and pisses people off, seize the opportunity to dump him. But on the assumption that he was doing a good job as an anchor and then made anti-semitic remarks, I wouldn’t have fired him.
Yglesias' glib contrarianim lead him to make glibly contrarian remarks on events like this.  Sure, most reasonable and rational people would fire Sanchez for making loathsome remarks, but not Yglesias. The standard for firing offensive people is if they are bad at their job.  If you are an under-performing and offensive employee? Fire away. Good at your job?  No firing allowed. Leaving aside the issue of how someone who is supposed to comment intelligently about the events of the day can comment intelligently about the events of the day when they think something as bizarre as what Sanchez thinks is really beyond me.  Why are successful people above firing for making anti-Semitic remarks?  Success, in Yglesias' world -- it would seem, inoculates against responsibility.

He goes on 
[t]here are a lot of ways of looking at this, but the bottom line to me is that if the concern is that there’s some legion of Rick Sanchez fans out there harboring anti-semitic views, sacking him like this is only going to make the problem worse. See, Sanchez spoke the truth and they got rid of him. What would make the problem better is some kind of apology, a beer summit with Jon Stewart, and continued coverage of the news with no further outbursts.
There are lots of whys to think about this.  The obvious one is that Sanchez said something idiotic and seems to actually believe it, and, therefore, CNN rightly fired him.  Another that no one but Yglesias thinks is the case is the one we need to focus on.  Why?  Because the voices in his head are much better for making glib remarks than actual discussions. Yglesias argues that even if Sanchez is a failure and an anti-Semite firing him is only going to prove to people whose beliefs have proven sturdily resistant facts and arguments that their irrational, evidence-free beliefs are true.  You know what else anti-Semites use as evidence for their beliefs?  The Holocaust, that's what. Whether Sanchez is fired or not will have no influence on anti-Semites because they are irrational, whackdoodles. Either that or we should stop all this teaching the Holocaust stuff for fear that it will only further inflame Antisemitism.  Really, he is that silly.

Yglesias points out that
Now of course on the other hand getting fired for something like this isn’t the world’s greatest injustice either and I’m not going to start marching around with a “Free Rick Sanchez!” sign.
Which seems reasonable enough, except that he goes on to observe
that we have very few Hispanic voices in English-language coverage of American politics and I’m not thrilled about losing one.
Sanchez is not a anti-Semitic buffoon but rather an authentic voice for Hispanic interests.  Is Antisemitism really that important to the Hispanic community?  I find that hard to believe. Sanchez seems like a buffoon on a number of fronts, and, outside of Laurel and Hardy's success in Spanish-language version films, I can't see any reason to think that Hispanismo[1] includes a buffoon component. He concludes

(Unless maybe CNN wants to heal the breach by awarding me a lucrative contract.)
Ha, see what he did there? Finally got it right. Give a careerist, glibbertarian, spoutter of nonsensical contrarianism enough money and he'll be your bff.

To be  clear, I mean not marching for Sanchez was reasonable; the implication that being fired for making crazy anti-Semitic comments is in any way an injustice is, of course, monumentally silly.

[1] No, I don't actually think that Yglesias was thinking about Hispanismo

Sunday, October 3, 2010


The Packers looked like crap, and I blame Favre. If he would only have retired when he said he was going to retire Aaron Rodgers wouldn't have been as ineffective as he was today because? Shut up, that's why Also, if I could pick one person not to be it would be Tod Collins.

Keep Fear Alive, For God's Sake


video via