Reason Morning Links: Legislators, Lobbyists, and Other Primates

Finally, in honor of the late Tony Curtis, here's a scene from Some Like It Hot:

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  • MNG||

    Here's my Johnny Longtorso moment...

    Critical Use of Tax Dollars: The Army prides itself on being the "biggest employer of musicians in the country"

    http://www.npr.org/blogs/there.....hing-bands

  • ||

    Gotta do something with all those excess trumpet and trombone players your precious public schools churn out.

  • Abdul||

    that's true. Nothing's worse than a rusty trombone.

  • Ska||

    I'd imagine giving a rusty trombone is worse.

  • ||

    Wasn't he posting here yesterday?

  • ||

    Total boondoggle. Generals love bands. And every general gets his own. They are soldiers. And they do do military stuff when they are not practicing. But it is a bit much for every major command down to the division having its own band. It is left over from the J.Phillips Sousa days, a relic of more polite times.

  • ||

    Musicians have provided the soundtrack to war for thousands of years. It makes the whole thing much more festive.

  • ||

    Back in the day, they used fife and drum corps to get people to march in step. When people fought in disciplined ranks, that was really important. The importance of that ended with the Civil War.

    But the military is a bureaucracy like any other. And once something gets established it is really hard to kill it. It is like the 82nd Airborne. In this day and age we will never drop an entire brigade much less a division into combat like we did in World War II. I think it is highly debatable if the air assaults at Normandy were effective enough to justify the cost. With weapons as deadly as they are now, no way would it be. Yet, we still have an entire division that plays junior Olympics jumping out of planes pretending it will some day be useful.

  • ||

    Bagpipes and the Solid Gold Dancers. That's all any military needs.

  • ||

    Though personally, if I ever become some sort of mad conqueror of nations, I intend to have the "Star Trek Fightin' Song" played during attacks. Live or canned, it makes no difference.

  • ||

    Nothing inspires the murder-lust required for successful war like the first Belle and Sebastian album.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Personally, SF, Matchbox 20 made me want to kill someone at random...

  • ||

    Wagner. Copola had it right. Nothing makes you want to march on another country like Wagner.

  • ||

    I wasn't taking votes. The decision has already been made.

  • Mike Laursen||

    Pro, you would have made a damned good starship captain. Too bad you were born in the wrong time. Err, in the wrong reality.

  • ||

    It's a temporal failing of mine.

  • ||

    Speaking of failing, did you take advantage of any of those 20,000 free tickets your Rays handed out last night?

  • ||

    No, but I thought about it. Wish they'd won.

  • Rich||

    Along these lines, here is a classic.

  • db||

    A friend who just graduated from high school told me the other day that his friend just joined the Marine Corps on the condition that he would be in a band. He actually got them to sign paperwork guaranteeing him that he would be assigned to a Corps band. Basically it sounds like once you're out of basic training, it's all music from there on out. I wondered WhyTF we were paying for this.

  • ||

    I love you Sparticus.

  • ||

    But not Crassus!

  • ||

    Oh, he just died? I thought he had died a while back. Tony was okay, and he gave us a pretty good comedic actor in his daughter.

  • Ted S.||

    I think Jesse should have linked to The Vikings instead.

  • ||

    For some reason I never Abe Vagodaed Curtis. I knew he was alive. And am sad to see him pass. And he was a great actor. Some Like It Hot and The Sweet Smell of Success are great movies.

  • ||

    I always liked him. I thought he was miscast in Spartacus but that can happen to any actor.

  • Marilyn||

    'the Sheboygan conservatory of music'
    'that's a good school!'

  • robc||

    No need to have a problem with Abe, status is available:

    http://www.abevigoda.com/

  • Citizen Nothing||

    If you'd a' told me 25 years ago that one could someday access the mortal status of Abe Vigoda 24 hours a day from anywhere on earth (and LEO, too), well, I'd a' called you a liar.

  • robc||

    If you had told me 25 years ago that Abe Vigoda would be alive in 25 years, I would have called you a liar.

  • Ayn_Randian||

  • ||

    Pity, that.

  • ||

    He was good as Harry Houdini too.

  • ||

    Abe Vigoda played Houdini?

  • ||

    I thought he had died a while back.

    You're thinking of Jamie Lee.

  • ||

    Janet Leigh was smoking back in the day. Much better looking than her daughter ever was.

  • Citizen Nothing||

    That reminds me of something I once heard about the most beautiful woman on earth being Valerie Perrine from the neck down.

  • ||

    If you have ever seen the movie Lenny, you would know there is some truth to that.

  • ||

    Or Slaughterhouse Five.

  • ||

    I read the book in Junior High. Something no kid should do.

  • ||

    They sat that he "was the Matt Damon of his time...".

  • Domtar the Space Alien||

    The planet is in the "Goldilocks zone" of space around a star where surface temperatures are neither too hot nor too cold for liquid water to form.

    I'll give you a hint, Earthlings. Liquid water is highly overrated.

  • CrackertyAssCracker||

    Ya I always think articles on life in space are always overly terracentric. At least this article threw in a couple of "life as we know it" caveats.

  • Robert||

    Damn, Domtar must be from a planet where little springs of alcohol come trickling thru the rocks!

  • zoltan||

    Trickling DOWN the rocks!

  • Gorblat||

    ON the rocks, please. And make it a double.

  • ||

    A crackdown on online pharmacies angers transsexuals.

    Angry trannies: a serious threat, or just damned entertaining?

  • ||

    Both. They have giant hands to strangle you with, but it's funny to watch them do it.

  • ||

    You should see them crack a lobster! Crush-film horror.

  • Jordan Elliot||

    It depends. If they're post-op they don't have the balls to do anything.

  • ||

    In the Male-to-Female transsexual operation, the only part that is not re-purposed are the testicles. They are just thrown away.

  • Citizen Nothing||

    You seem to be obsessed by this fact, SF. Just sayin'. (No homo.)

  • ||

    Not really. It's just when I hear something horrific is sticks with me forever. The only thing that helps is passing it along.

    "Your vulva is why I drink," is another one.

  • Jordan Elliot||

    "Your vulva is why I drink,"

    I have to remember that.

  • -||

    I have to forget it.

  • ||

    That's what the drinking's for.

  • Lieutenant Commander Queeg||

    [click, click]

  • Citizen Nothing||

    Good one.

  • Citizen Nothing||

    I mean two.

  • Jordan Elliot||

    You know the scene from one of the Simpson's episodes where the Vet tosses the body of the hamster and it goes through the mini-hoop in to the trash?

    I envision the same thing here. Only with two hoops.

  • ||

    They could get a show on MSNBC.

  • ||

  • Big Ben & Krugnuts||

    And the fact that Chinese monetary policy makes its products relatively cheaper

    We'll show you how to devalue a currency, bitches!

  • Entity Formerly Known As ACORN||

    Delhi Deploys 'Super Monkey' Security Guards For Commonwealth Games

    I find your ideas interesting and would like to subscribe to your newsletter.

  • ||

    I almost posted that for Monkey Tuesday but was too busy. Truly, there is no end at all to the monkey stories in the news.

  • Warty||

    Sagarsingh 5 minutes ago
    I am proud of Indian way to deal this situation unlike western way, where the white man would have ordered to kill all monkeys and later announced re-habitation of the few remaining to get an award for caring. Jai Ho Bharat! (Bharat is ancient name of India)

    The white man in his head is an asshole.

  • Brett L||

    The story I read on the monkey troupers mentioned that the Mayor of Dehli in 2007 was killed in a fall off a balcony trying to escape a pack of monkeys that attacked him. So I'm not sure if that makes the stereotypical white man more wrong or more right.

  • ||

    KILLER MONKEYS!!! RUN FOR YOUR LIVES!!!

  • 2010 Voter||

    A deeply unpopular Congress is bolting for the campaign trail without finishing its most basic job — approving a budget for the government year that begins on Friday. Lawmakers also are postponing a major fight over taxes, two embarrassing ethics cases and other political hot potatoes until angry and frustrated voters render their verdict in the Nov. 2 elections.

    Do not re-elect any incumbent, then regroup to handle the mad duck fallout.

  • Jordan Elliot||

    "Astronomers may have found a habitable planet."

    Ditch the name. We should call this planet "Uncton".

  • Marvin||

  • ||

    It obstructs my view of Venus.

  • ||

    If a lifetime of reading science fiction has taught me anything, the first planet human colonize must be "Eden" or a homophone of same.

    And never be the one to colonize the first planet. It's a disaster 99% of the time.

  • ||

    Yeah. It will be Eden and there is a pretty good chance it will be inhabited by some smoking hot blond who is not quite what she seems to be.

  • Citizen Nothing||

    Be sure to check the size of her hands.

  • Brett L||

    Redheads. I'm in favor of Heinleining this one.

  • Mike Laursen||

    Seconded.

  • Vermont Gun Owner||

    No argument here!

  • The Ghost of Adam||

    And never be the one to colonize the first planet. It's a disaster 99% of the time.

    You got that right!

  • Death Panelist||

    In any case, hopfully the indigenous let us rename it.

  • Jordan Elliot||

    We'll just whip out the smallpox blankets, "Earthwater"(booze), and then kill their equivalent of the buffalo and we can call it whatever we want.

  • ||

    "Space Buffalo" should cover it.

  • Rhywun||

    Buggaloes?

  • Pope Jimbo||

    So the aliens will get to control the intergalactic space casinos then?

    Also will the more PC papers refuse to print the name of LA's new NFL franchise, the "Greenskins"?

  • Butts Wagner||

    I just want to mine the planet for their precious natural resources.

  • ||

    Yeah it usually ends up a warzone or atrocity filled wasteland or some such.

    I say just cut to the chase and call the first planet Hubris.

  • ||

    And if history is any guide, it will be named after the Captain of the first ship to arrive.

    The rest of your statement follows however...

  • AlmightyJB||

    Bransonian?

  • Freedonia||

    Bransonia!

  • DG||

    It's amazing that people who are supposedly educated think that the Chinese government burdening the Chinese people in order to provide US consumers with lower priced goods is a bad thing for the American people. The only people hurt by this policy are the Chinese.

  • ||

    Yup. Japan did this in the 1970s and 1980s. And where did it get them? Yeah, you make all of this stuff. But you can never enjoy the benefits of it because your currency won't buy you anything.

  • ||

    Those "burdened" Chinese people are modernizing at an incredible rate, using their export economy as the engine.

    As a strategy for (re)building an economy, its not bad. The hard part comes when you have to pivot from being a low-cost exporter to being a domestic consumer economy.

  • ||

    "Those "burdened" Chinese people are modernizing at an incredible rate, using their export economy as the engine."

    I think that is a myth. They have some nice cities with big mostly empty high rises that impress nitwits like Tom Friedman true. But most of those highrises are empty and they have a real estate bubble that dwarfs ours. The "pivot" you are talking about is really when the bill comes due for devaluing your currency. If you have a stable rule of law and a hard working, productive population, the development will come without devaluating yourself towards poverty.

    You surprise me RC. You always claim to be a gold bug. Now you are telling us how wonderful China is for debasing its currency.

  • Brett L||

    On the other hand, It keeps the $3T or so of bad debt held by government banks from crashing their economy.

  • ||

    I own (not enough) gold because we live in a world of fiat currencies, John.

    Building an export economy in a globalized world is certainly the fastest way to modernize. It may be the only way to turn capitalize on the strengths of an undeveloped economy (mostly, low cost labor).

    Given that all currencies are fiat currencies, a country that wants to modernize based on exports has to cap its currency and play the competitive devaluation game.

    Could you modernize with an export economy in a world on the gold standard? Sure. You still have the competitive advantage to do so, and your competitors can't devalue their currencies to offset that advantage. But in a fiat world, they can, and you have to play the game, as the Chinese have done.

  • ||

    There is a middle ground between the gold standard and debasing your currency. The currency advantage goes both ways. If other countries stupidly let their currencies fall below their natural value, your imports are cheaper. You can buy raw materials cheaply and manufacture them into products. And the money you do make goes farther.

    I take issue with your whole premise that one must have "export based economy" to succeed. The United States built its economy without relying on exports. And if you read recent work on the 18th and 19th Centuries, you will find that mercantilism and colonialism never made the countries who practiced it any money. Germany never had any colonies of note and never practiced mercantilism yet became an economic super power. Neither did the US. The US in fact practiced protectionism for most of the 19th Century.

    I suppose making things at a loss via cheap currency and setting yourself up as the cheap supplier to the world is better than being Bangladesh. But it is not as good as keeping a stronger currency and making money the hard way by providing better products and being more productive.

  • ||

    "Germany never had any colonies of note"

    We respectfully disagree.

  • Jason||

    And if you read recent work on the 18th and 19th Centuries, you will find that mercantilism and colonialism never made the countries who practiced it any money. [...] The US in fact practiced protectionism for most of the 19th Century.

    Umm, mercantilism is protectionist.

  • The Philippines||

    Germany never had any colonies of note and never practiced mercantilism yet became an economic super power. Neither did the US.

    We disagree.

  • DG||

    Devaluing the currency is great for Chinese companies and the power elites who can enjoy the benefits of modernization. Not so great for the rest of the people who have a much tougher time trying to deal with the effects of inflation.

  • robc||

    If I were president, everything would get vetoed each calendar year until the budget for the next fiscal year.

    Pass the "perfect libertarian bill"? Veto, budget isnt done yet.

  • Rich||

    Isn't that in the "Pledge to America"?

  • robc||

    Hey, Im sure they have something good in there. I might have read it all if it had been all financial, all the time.

  • rho||

    Your goals are too prosaic.

    If I were president there'd be a flotilla of weaponized dirigibles amassing on the border of Liechtenstein by Tuesday.

  • ||

    OK, so you'd veto a bill repealing the Controlled Substances Act?

  • robc||

    Yep. 5 minutes after the budget passes, they can resubmit for my signature.

    Its not like I wouldnt be pardoning everyone convicted under it anyway.

  • CaptainSmartass||

    Prescription hormone therapy. Cause when a "chick" ain't got no ovaries, "she" needs some other way to get enough estrogen that "her" boobs don't shrink.

  • Robert||

    Probably many of the doctors who could prescribe it for them would consider it drug abuse.

  • Brother Wolf||

    Just curious.. what are these drugs that "trans-sexuals" need and can't get at walgreens??

  • ||

    Female hormones. Estrogen mostly.

  • AlmightyJB||

    Just what we need in this country. More $#%^$& Estrogen.

  • ||

    drugs that "trans-sexuals" need

    On the eighth day, God created the trannies with their big hands, but God was a lousy chemist. Or a big fat prankster.

  • Brother Wolf||

    ahh, makes sense.

  • ||

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/fem.....shion.html

    Spray on clothes. The writer in the photos has a beautiful body. And the comments are nasty about her.

  • ||

    the comments are nasty

    Speaking of nasty, why is it so civilized in here today? Something or someone is missing...

  • CaptainSmartass||

    Those comments are either all from gay men or catty women. No straight man would ever complain about seeing a woman that looks like that.

  • ||

    I think so. I don't find British women to be that attractive. But she is gorgeous. Only a gay man who thinks all women should look like preteen boys or a jealous women could complain about her body.

  • Brett L||

    I only eat filet mignon. Send that porterhouse back. Its inedible.

  • ||

    The writer in the photos has a beautiful body.

    You really have to factor in the writer bonus. For a writer, she is transcendentally hot.

    Stupid commenters act like she's some sort of swamp donkey.

    As for the clothes... Just call it "Boob Stucco."

  • ||

    For anyone short of a actor or model she is transcendentally hot. Any guy who tells you that if he were single and that writer started chatting him up he wouldn't be interested is either lying or gay.

  • Vermont Gun Owner||

    She's smoking. What do they have to complain about?

  • zoltan||

    Maybe they are upset that the guy they used is some skinny, hipster fag and took it out on the hot chick. And she is a very attractive woman for a blonde.

  • cynical||

    I'm pretty sure the guy invented it just so women would show him their tits (and he was right, bless his heart).

  • ||

    Another reason to like Chris Christie; the NYT editorial board hates him.

    Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey has made a national name for himself by slashing spending on education and other vital services. New Jersey’s children and other vulnerable residents are paying the price. Now he wants to stall — and perhaps cancel — one of the most important transportation projects in the country: a new railway tunnel under the Hudson River linking New Jersey and Midtown Manhattan.

  • Ed Schultz||

    He's also fat, which is always good for a pun.

  • Ed Schultz||

    BTW, even though I'm not a tranny, I did cut of my balls. I then ate them in a soup.

  • ||

    http://www.cato-at-liberty.org.....e-hellooo/

    Cato has a great set of charts on just this subject. Teaching employment has gone up at 40 times the private sector rate in the last 50 years. Yet, achievement has stagnated.

  • Ed Schultz Viewer Base||

    We love you, Ed! We're holding our national fan club meeting at Denny's!

  • Ed Schultz||

    That's Psycho Talk™!

  • The Gobbler||

    Yesterday, Ed had the NJ teacher of the year as a guest. She said that New Jersey slashed 10,000 "education professionals". Just WTF counts as an education professional? Because it's clearly more than just teachers.

  • zoltan||

    Probably administrators who gobble up--what?--at least 50% of education spending.

  • Rhywun||

    The new tunnel is needed but at something like $8 billion dollars one has to wonder where all that money is going.

    "...billions of dollars pledged by the federal government and the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey will go elsewhere, thousands of new construction jobs will be lost..."

    Ah... "stimulus"! No mention that the plan in fact sucks (it doesn't feed into Penn Station or allow for any other service to use it) nor any questioning of the breathtaking cost of the thing. But it brings jobs! And more fed-money tied to it - which means MORE jobs!! Ugh.

  • The Gobbler||

    Finally! A way to get from NJ to Manhatten! That will be great!

  • ||

    http://www.spectator.co.uk/col.....aps-.thtml

    The wages of feministing in England.

  • Abdul||

    more than half the men surveyed said they frequently dress up in women’s clothing

    You blame feminists? The obvious culprits here are Benny Hill and Monty Python.

  • Citizen Nothing||

    Eddie Izzard made it cool. At least that's why I do it.

  • Elizabethan Theatre||

    Ahem.

  • Ancient Greek Theater||

    Ahem. Ahem.

  • zoltan||

    Bad news this week for those who fear we’re becoming a nation of girlie men. According to a survey carried out by Demos, a third of men who graduated from university this summer would give up their careers to care for their children.

    Do. Not. Compute.

  • Almanian||

    Another habitable planet AND monkey guards? We've reached the pinnacle, boys and girls.

    I gotta get me some monkey guards at my house.

  • Trespasser||

    Take your hands off me you damn, dirty ape.

  • ||

    monkeys aren't apes...

  • Pip||

    Fucking speciesist.

  • Caeser||

    But now... now we will put away our hatred.
    Now we will put down our weapons.
    We have passed through the night of the fires, and those who were our masters are now our servants.
    And we, who are not human, can afford to be humane.
    Destiny is the will of God, and if it is man’s destiny to be dominated, it is God’s will that he be dominated with compassion, and understanding.
    So, cast out your vengeance. Tonight, we have seen the birth of the Planet of the Apes!

  • ||

    Senate votes to turn down volume on loud commercials

    The Senate unanimously passed a bill late Wednesday to require television stations and cable companies to limit the volume of commercials and keep them at the level of the programs they interrupt.

    The House has passed similar legislation. Before it can become law, minor differences between the two versions have to be worked out when Congress returns to Washington after the Nov. 2 election.
  • Pip||

    It's good to see congress finally doing something useful.

  • Cytotoxic||

    So Assang is an asshole. Saw that coming.

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