A.M. Links: Military Suicides Down 22 Percent, Gonzaga to Review Anti-Gun Policy, Atlanta Cops Shoot Dog While Responding to Accidental 911 Call

  • liveUS MarinesSuicides are down 22 percent across the military this year; defense officials are reticent to attribute the decline to new prevention programs or to the drawdowns in Iraq and Afghanistan, since many suicides have been of military personnel who have served in neither theater and the causes are still poorly understood.
  • One Senate Democrat is collecting signatures from other senators for a letter requesting an investigation of the Obamacare website roll out. Kay Hagan voted for Obamacare and is up for re-election in North Carolina, a state Obama won in 2008 but lost in 2012, next year.
  • She’s no Charles Curtis but Elizabeth Warren may run for the 2016 Democrat nomination for president.
  • Gonzaga University will review its anti-gun policy; two students are facing probation and other disciplinary measures after using a legally registered firearm in off-campus university housing to deter a would-be home intruder.
  • Police in Atlanta shot a dog in the head while responding to a 911 call placed accidentally.
  • North Korea held a round of public executions earlier this month for offenses including watching American films and reading the Bible.
  • Less than a week after being cleared of graft charges, hardliner Avigdor Lieberman was re-appointed foreign minister of Israel.

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  • Fist of Etiquette||

    Gonzaga University will review its anti-gun policy...

    What the hell kind of university reviews its gun policies when no one even died as a result of them? That's weird.

  • UnCivilServant||

    They realized that the policies were punitive enough for academia insanity and want an excuse to tighten them.

  • UnCivilServant||

    *were not

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    Police in Atlanta shot a dog in the head while responding to a 911 call placed accidentally.

    Heroes gotta shoot something.

  • Restoras||

    The dog shoulda armed itself.

  • Ted S.||

    Hey, they got home to their families, didn't they?

  • Restoras||

    Well as I racall some Animals are more equal to others, Pigs being the are most equal.

  • Rich||

    In other dog-related news: Woman found dead in car with dozens of dogs was director of Animal Rights Foundation

    Apparently dogs have the right to assisted suicide.

  • gaijin||

    Was it a murder-suicide?

  • UnCivilServant||

    Gonzaga University will review its anti-gun policy; two students are facing probation and other disciplinary measures after using a legally registered firearm in off-campus university housing to deter a would-be home intruder.

    Gonzaga will make it clearer that they will punish you for defending yourself on college owned properties off campus.

  • Redmanfms||

    Why do people live in university-owned housing?

    You can get a couple roommates together and rent a cheaper place without fuckwit rules damn near everywhere except maybe New York.

    As long as one of your group has a car you can live in some sleepy suburb and just carpool to campus.

  • Zeb||

    Many reasons, I suppose. Some schools require it. And a lot of people want to live completely in the college cocoon where everyone is the same age and you can get drunk all the time and not worry about how to get home.

  • mad libertarian guy||

    And a lot of people want to live completely in the college cocoon where everyone is the same age and you can get drunk all the time and not worry about how to get home.

    True.

    But it would be just as accurate to write:

    And a lot of people want to live completely in the college cocoon where everyone is the same age and you can get drunk all the time and not worry about how to get home live your life never having to hear opposing points of view.

  • wareagle||

    most universities, particularly the state-run institutions, are not in areas with sleepy suburbs. They are in small towns and parking is often a nightmare, a disincentive to driving.

    As Zeb points out, many require it for freshmen. And if you think an off-campus place is necessarily cheaper, you've not been in a college environment for some time. Supply, demand, and all that.

  • Ted S.||

    "Why does the administration want us dead?"

  • UnCivilServant||

    "You are martyrs to their ideology"

  • Lord Humungus||

    Who counts as an Obamacare enrollee? The Obama administration settles on a definition.

    Health insurance plans only count subscribers as enrolled in a health plan once they’ve submited a payment. That is when the carrier sends out a member card and begins paying doctor bills.

    When the Obama administration releases health law enrollment figures later this week, though, it will use a more expansive definition. It will count people who have purchased a plan as well as those who have a plan sitting in their online shopping cart but have not yet paid.
  • gaijin||

    so that holiday wish list order sitting in my Amazon cart counts as sales?

  • Bee Tagger||

    If your wife can make you eat broccoli, surely she can make you buy her everything you consider buying her.

  • gaijin||

    well, I am very sensitive to her penal attacks.

  • Brett L||

    Penal or penile?

  • gaijin||

    Her penal attacks sometimes involve denying penile attacks.

  • Pro Libertate||

    Next up, sales tax payable on items sitting in your cart but unpurchased.

  • Raven Nation||

    So, if it's in their cart that means they've thought about buying a plan. If they don't, subsequently, buy it, will that be considered a thought crime?

  • Rich||

    Excellent.

    Even if it's just in their "Wish List", penaltax 'em.

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    Why pay now for a plan that is effective beginning in 2014?

  • gaijin||

    Why buy insurance before you need it?

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    North Korea held a round of public executions earlier this month for offenses including watching American films and reading the Bible.

    The ones who watched the Dennis Rodman movie Simon Sez killed themselves.

  • UnCivilServant||

    Watching American Movies? But they were just emulating the late Kim Jong-il, who had one of the largest film collections in the world!

    I know, these are peasants.

  • seguin||

    Only Dear Leader can resist the pernicious influence of the evil Capitalist Hollywood. He has managed to do so by training with liquor, whores, and, what's the stuff called? Oh yeah....Food.

  • Pro Libertate||

    Is that any American film or such certain American films?

  • seguin||

    Pearl Harbor = Instant Death.

  • Atanarjuat||

    Well, you probably wouldn't want to get caught watching the Red Dawn remake.

  • Brett L||

    Why would they remake a perfect movie?

  • Pro Libertate||

    I find it odd to describe, even ironically, that movie as good, let alone perfect. It was pretty fucking stupid.

  • ||

    At least the original had a cultural context coming during the paranoia of the cold war. The remake has us being ground-invaded by North Korea. Like, seriously?

  • Pro Libertate||

    What, were aliens assisting them?

  • ||

    In fairness, it was originally written and shot with the invasion coming from China, and they digitally patched patched over the uniforms in post-production so as not to put off Chinese audiences for the global release. (No, seriously, they did)

  • Pro Libertate||

    China is not a serious military threat, either. Not today.

  • ||

    China is not a serious military threat, either. Not today.

    True, but it's a lot more plausible just from a pure technology standpoint. I mean, seriously, North Korea? I can suspend disbelief to tune into a flick sometimes, but I can't shut my entire brain down.

  • Brett L||

    Sure, the premise was crap, but think about how many military projects have been straight-faced justified by the idea that an Army could somehow make it to Nebraska. I look at it as a clever satire of just how unrealistic the invasion and takeover of Fortress America is. It took 7 generations fighting border skirmishes against peoples with significantly more disparate technological disadvantages.

  • Brett L||

    Random capitalization of army notwithstanding. I meant an army, not say the 3rd Soviet Army rather than the 2nd.

  • ||

    I always figured the original was meant as something of a send up of the Red Menace paranoia. Although it's just as likely it was a quick means to a quick buck. Not everythinganything in Hollywood is high art.

    But that's the whole thing with the remake. The 80's version fit within a cultural context. Nobody with more functioning brain cells than they can count on one hand is actually worried about a North Korean invasion of anytown USA. It doesn't tap into any lived experience in the audience.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    RED DAWN WAS THE THIRD GREATEST MOVIE TO COME OUT OF THE 1980s. PERIOD.

  • gaijin||

    Suicides are down 22 percent across the military this year;

    Not to be too cold, but wouldn't that be expected as the population of the suicidal self reduces?

  • SugarFree||

    No, this can only be seen as a triumph of the Obama Administration.

    "Obama: Now with slightly fewer military suicides."

  • Pro Libertate||

    They killed themselves previously because of bad, free-market healthcare. Now with Obamacare, everything is groovy.

  • Steve G||

    You laugh, but wait for the wholly unexpected drop in military sexual assaults now that we've put all our attention on that this year.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    ...Elizabeth Warren may run for the 2016 Democrat nomination for president.

    Squaw stab squaw in back. Sad day.

  • gaijin||

    I think it will end in an all-Estrogen ticket.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    Unless one of the uteruses involved is non-white (fake injun doesn't count) then that would be disastrous for the Dems.

  • DontShootMe||

    At this point, what does it matter whether Fauxcahontas is a real Native American or not?

  • EDG reppin' LBC||

    Thee Headcoats: Pocahontas Was Her Name

  • Atanarjuat||

    Only if Clinton and Warren don't get into a huge catfight on the campaign trail.

    /scaring off potential libertarian women

  • Lord Humungus||

    Andrew Huszar: Confessions of a Quantitative Easer
    We went on a bond-buying spree that was supposed to help Main Street. Instead, it was a feast for Wall Street.

    From the trenches, several other Fed managers also began voicing the concern that QE wasn't working as planned. Our warnings fell on deaf ears. In the past, Fed leaders—even if they ultimately erred—would have worried obsessively about the costs versus the benefits of any major initiative. Now the only obsession seemed to be with the newest survey of financial-market expectations or the latest in-person feedback from Wall Street's leading bankers and hedge-fund managers. Sorry, U.S. taxpayer.

    Trading for the first round of QE ended on March 31, 2010. The final results confirmed that, while there had been only trivial relief for Main Street, the U.S. central bank's bond purchases had been an absolute coup for Wall Street. The banks hadn't just benefited from the lower cost of making loans. They'd also enjoyed huge capital gains on the rising values of their securities holdings and fat commissions from brokering most of the Fed's QE transactions. Wall Street had experienced its most profitable year ever in 2009, and 2010 was starting off in much the same way.
  • Restoras||

    I'll file this under "No Shit, Sherlock". What a bunch of dumbasses.

  • mad libertarian guy||

    What a bunch of dumbasses.

    The fuck are you talking about? I've been assured that those working on the economy are America's Best and Brightest™.

  • Jordan||

    Excellent article. Good to see a Monetarist clown repent.

  • gaijin||

    Yes. But I'd still like to see him held accountable.

  • CatoTheElder||

    There are at least 1000 who should be in line ahead of him, but, yeah ...

  • Brett L||

    I expect Paul Krugman will have a five minute hate directed at Mr. Huszar by the end of the day.

  • waffles||

    North Korea held a round of public executions earlier this month for offenses including watching American films and reading the Bible.

    Neat!

    If progressives ruled the United States with this kind of force what kind of things would be cause for execution here?

  • UnCivilServant||

    Watching american films, reading the bible, reporting on public executions.

  • Rasilio||

    Heteronormative sex (gay and kinky sex is ok), Hate Speech, Hiring non union workers

  • mad_hominist||

    Being a dog?

  • mad libertarian guy||

    Watching The Sportsman Channel or NASCAR.

  • Slammer||

    Better to ask what few things WOULD be allowed.

  • waffles||

    That which is not expressly permitted is forbidden.

  • lap83||

    Watching anything but The Newsroom. Not prefacing every statement with 'praise Obama' or ending every statement with 'may the kochtopus thuglicans be smited from the earth'

  • Bee Tagger||

    She’s no Charles Curtis but Elizabeth Warren may run for the 2016 Democrat nomination for president.

    Finally, a president with enough balls to get the Redskins' team name changed.

  • db||

    Please let that be one of her actual platform planks.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    One Senate Democrat is collecting signatures from other senators for a letter requesting an investigation of the Obamacare website roll out.

    Guided by purely political motivations and suffering lack of leadership. Now, can we maybe look into some of the scandals that aren't IT related?

  • Raven Nation||

    There are only false scandals.

  • Bee Tagger||

    The IT department virtualized those scandals.

  • DontShootMe||

    And then pitched the hosting hardware into the sea. Scandals all gone.

  • Lord Humungus||

    Bison is Alberta man's 'best friend'

    Jim Sautner, who lives near Spruce Grove, Alta., keeps a bison named Bailey Jr. as a pet.

    Sautner told Trail's End's Allison Devereaux that caring for a bison isn't much trouble. He eats hay and oats, and takes care of his own coat.
  • Atanarjuat||

    "He's my best friend." Sautner says. "He's my buffalo."

    Not sure why, but that quote made me laugh.

  • ||

    North Korea executes 80 people 'for watching foreign films'

    Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/world/no.....z2kRLFxE8x

  • ||

    What, is the reason link not good enough for you, is that it?

    Is it because they sourced FAUX news?

  • ||

    Oh, who looks at the links in AM Links?

  • Ted S.||

    I thought the reason link sourced 24/7. That's why nobody reads the links.

  • Raven Nation||

    Bastards.

  • Lord Humungus||

    Deputies find more human remains after dog brings home leg

    93-year-old Bill Flowers found the leg after his dog Liberty dragged it home, and was standing over it.

    "I examined it," Flowers said. "I picked it up, and looked at the toes and nothing. None of the leg or foot was damaged - from the knee down it wasn't damaged at all."

    Flowers said the leg was gray in color, and was dismembered about 4 inches from the buttocks.

    He buried the leg in his backyard, and didn't call police until four days later - at the urging of his daughter.
  • ||

    Sounds like the dog may have been in on it. Better not take any chances with our brave officer's safety...

  • Redmanfms||

    He said, "I was afraid to call. I'm 93 years-old. I didn't want to have to go to the pen for something I didn't do."

    Wise this man is.

  • waffles||

    I guess that makes more sense then.

  • Restoras||

    Yep. Never call the cops. Though in this case I might have called them and left the dog outside with the leg.

  • UnCivilServant||

    And get the dog shot!?

  • mad libertarian guy||

    Yep. Never call the cops. Though in this case I might have called them and left the dog outside with the leg.

    There are only two legitimate reasons to call the cops: 1) so that you can get the required police report in order to turn in to your insurance company in the event you were robbed; 2) if there is a dead body on your property.

  • waffles||

    Even just a small part of a dead body? You mean I shouldn't keep that jar of ears on my mantle?

  • Slammer||

    Oops, I thought those were prunes.

  • UnCivilServant||

    The formaldehyde smell didn't tip you off?

  • Lord Humungus||

    I use honey.

  • Rich||

    He buried the leg in his backyard, and didn't call police until four days later - at the urging of his daughter.

    "Daddy, you really *should* do something about that leg."

  • waffles||

    That's a strange reaction to dismembered body parts. Welp, better bury it with the rest of my collection.

  • Lord Humungus||

    Personally I would have mounted it over the fireplace.

  • Rich||

    Or drive around with it hanging out of the trunk.

  • gaijin||

    or use it as a lamp stand

  • Lord Humungus||

    +1 "You'll shoot your eye out, kid"

  • Restoras||

    +1 Electric Sex

  • ||

    especially appropriate at Halloween.

  • ||

    She’s no Charles Curtis but Elizabeth Warren may run for the 2016 Democrat nomination for president.

    She's just going to be fodder for Hillary. If anyone wins then nomination other than her, it will be because that person is a token AND has a potential for cult of personality. Maybe Julian Castro(just a wild guess, really).

  • Spoonman.||

    Julian Castro would be a decent candidate, I think - San Antonio has been doing very well (thanks to the Eagle Ford, not him, but he can claim it's him), he's not from the Northeast, he seems decently charming, and of course he's Hispanic.

    I thought Deval Patrick was going to run as well.

  • Lord Humungus||

    The Truth about Navigators
    James O’Keefe reveals corruption at the heart of the president’s signature program.

    The events of O’Keefe’s video of a Texas navigator site run by the National Urban League are a familiar sight to viewers of his past efforts exposing Medicaid and voter fraud. Government-paid workers supposedly trained to uphold the law advise clients on how to lie on government forms, evade legal requirements, and ignore proper procedures.

    “You lie because your premiums will be higher,” one navigator advises an investigator for O’Keefe’s Project Veritas, who tells the worker he sometimes smokes. “Don’t tell them that. Don’t tell ’em.”
  • Palin's Buttplug||

    O'Keefe is the ratfucker who impersonated a telecom repairman to enter a federal building and steal phone records from a US Senator.

    He was charged with a felony (later plea bargained down).

    True GOP type.

  • Lord Humungus||

    nice misdirect.

  • ||

    Lol. Daniel Ellsberg is a hero though.

    If it weren't for double standards, some folks wouldn't have any standards at all.

  • seguin||

    Jeebus. You're boring as fuck. Same damn thing, day after day, thread after thread. Do you ever get Repetitive Stress Disorder?

  • tarran||

    He doesn't.

    Shriek is the Internet equivalent of a homeless drunk guy screaming at the wall, its brain turned to pudding by a diet consisting solely of alcohol.

    When you guys respond to it, it's the equivalent of the wall screaming back at it. It doesn't matter that your response is abuse, the wall interacted with it; it means Shriek matters!

    Don't be its wall people.

  • seguin||

    I'm sorry.

  • Swiss Servator, I got nothing.||

    Note that I have taken your advice...it is...liberating.

  • Weigel's Cock Ring||

    Leave my boss alone; he's only doing exactly what he's getting paid for.

  • mad libertarian guy||

    O'Keefe is the ratfucker who impersonated a telecom repairman to enter a federal building and steal phone records from a US Senator.

    You mean phone records that should be public record?

  • SugarFree||

    And totally unlike the millions and millions of phone records that Obama's NSA is gulping down?

  • Rasilio||

    "O'Keefe is the ratfucker who impersonated a telecom repairman to enter a federal building and steal phone records from a US Senator."

    Um, so? Does this preclude the things he says being true?

    I mean Yes, O'Keefe has actually been caught doing some shoddy journalism in the past, but being caught attempting to break into a Senator's office and "steal" phone records could very accurately be described as taking risks to engage in serious journalism and in no way impugn's anything else he has to say.

  • tarran||

    Holy shit!

    I didn't even consider this!

    Basically the navigators are acting as insurance agents. There's a huge body of obligations that insurance agents have to both prospective buyers and to the *sellers* that are enforced by the licensing systems.

    In this case, though, the health insurance companies can't fire a navigator like they can fire an insurance agent!

    This is fucking huge!

  • tarran||

    During my stint selling life, disability and health insurance one of the things pounded into us was *YOU DON'T LIE TO ANYONE!!!!*

    Not the customer and not the insurance company.

    All the good insurance companies are ruthless when it comes to lying to them. Because they know that if their sales force makes it a habit to lie to them, their underwriting system will collapse, and they will probably go tits up.

    Un-fucking-believable.

  • waffles||

    No way man. NPR already mention this. They said it was different because...um...because they aren't privately paid employees of the insurance company? And they have no financial stake in it?

    I guess it's different you know, FYTW.

  • VG Zaytsev||

    Yep the profit motive is so inherently evil that it incents honesty. While governmental non-profit work is so virtuous that it incents fraud.

  • Rasilio||

    " And they have no financial stake in it?"

    Even if they are not directly making commissions for the work their jobs directly depend on the number of enrollees they generate meaning they have a financial stake.

  • John||

    Yes. It is huge. Being an insurance agent is like being a lawyer. You have to pass a state sanctioned exam and go through a background check before you do it. And that actually makes sense. Selling insurance is a gold mine for fraud.

    Obamacare just threw out 50 states worth of insurance fraud protection.

  • seguin||

    I normally don't call you out John, but I don't see how exams and background checks prevent fraud. They just prevent amateurish fraud.

  • John||

    They don't totally prevent it. But they do help in that it makes the crooks work a little bit before they can commit the fraud. Sure, you will always have fraud. But with that system the average stupid criminal looking for a quick score won't be the one committing it.

    If the government were not involved, the reputable insurance companies would probably create the same sort of system whereby you got certified by some privately run insurance organization and thus consumers would have some assurance that the guy they are buying from is not a crook and would pay a premium for it.

    Government regulation is often not necessary because the private sector would do it on its own, not because you can't do anything to stop fraud.

  • tarran||

    If the government were not involved, the reputable insurance companies would probably create the same sort of system whereby you got certified by some privately run insurance organization and thus consumers would have some assurance that the guy they are buying from is not a crook and would pay a premium for it

    Basically, that's what they have now. Except the tax-payers are covering the salaries of the administrators. :)

    From my perch inside the industry, I observed that the insurance companies were in pretty close contact with the DOI, and there is a great deal of back and forth on proposed rule changes and the like.

    Some economic historian could write a pretty interesting book by surveying the different dynamics across the 50 states vis a vis the insurance regulators and the companies they regulate.

  • Brett L||

    Let us say that they insulate the people with the money from successful allegations of allowing fraud by negligence.

  • tarran||

    Actually, the exams do discourage fraud.

    About 1 in 20 questions is one on the penalties for various misdeeds. They make you memorize how much jail time you can face for fraud, the fines for churning etc.

    I personally found it infuriating because I didn't want to memorize the penalties... wrong is wrong! :)

    They also send out a circular about all the enforcement actions, and it's fucking brutal. There are tens of thousands of insurance agents in every state. Every year a few tens of them end up facing pretty stiff penalties.

    And that's just at the regulatory level.

    Companies have their own standards. They fire people all the time. My boss canned three people (including my work-wife) during my stint because he decided he didn't trust them anymore. In my work-wife's case, she was an ex army sergeant and she tried to bullshit him using the I'm-a-dumb-enlisted-guy-so-don't-blame-me trick that works so well when facing an article 15 investigation. Of course, this is 100 degrees wrong when you are in a position of acting as a fiduciary and she was booted from the industry.

    And they publicised that shit.

    There are unscrupulous insurance agents out there. There are no insurance agents out there that don't know the rules.

  • CatoTheElder||

    Who didn't see this coming?

    A troll who spends its time imagining that it plugs a celebrity's butt might go in full-denial mode and make a Koolaid comment, but I doubt that even it is surprised.

  • seguin||

    I honestly didn't think of it. I was so consumed by ACA's overt shittiness, I wasn't even considering associated shittiness.

  • Lord Humungus||

    Japan readies additional $30 billion for Fukushima clean-up: sources

    Japan's government is finalizing plans to borrow an additional 3 trillion yen ($30 billion) to pay for compensating Fukushima evacuees and cleaning up the area outside the wrecked nuclear plant, said people with knowledge of the situation.

    The additional borrowing would mark both a recognition of the project's mounting costs and the difficulty of hitting initial targets for reducing radiation levels in the towns and villages hardest hit by the fallout from the worst nuclear accident since Chernobyl.
  • mad libertarian guy||

    The world's reaction to Fukushima shows exactly how retarded most people are. A handful of anti nuclear activists have driven the narrative and set back nuclear power by decades, and for no good fucking reason at all.

  • Restoras||

    But ZOMG Godzirra!

  • Lord Humungus||

    so lacist!

  • gaijin||

    Fitch Ratings has downgraded the creditworthiness of Chicago’s bond debt because of its public pension problems....again

    Friday’s downgrade stems from “the lack of meaningful solutions” to the city’s pension situation. City and fire pension programs have no more than 30 percent of the money needed to cover obligations...The mayor’s calls for help have taken a backseat while state lawmakers spin their wheels on finding a fix for the state’s five underwater pension systems.

    Top to bottom, we're all winners in Illinois!

  • UnCivilServant||

    I am so glad that we have thusfar manage to fend off efforts of the legislature at raiding our pension fund here (we're 110% funded right now)

    What I wonder is why the following option never comes up in discussion pension reforms - Private pension companies. Sort of along the line of mutual funds, it would be an independant company funded by contributions from the employees (with potential employer match) to buy credits towards a defined benefit annuity that follows the employee from job to job (since it's not managed by the employer) and as it is independant of the employers, can't be raided by the executives. While you can try to emulate it with rolling high fee savings accounts (your crappy 401k options) into a life annuity, a well managed fund can attain better overall rates of return than the mass of individual accounts (and from the fees on my individual account, I'd rather the managers be paid contingent on fund performance).

    It's a half formed idea right now.

  • John||

    They will never be held accountable, but the Union leaders ought to be the ones the pensioners are angry at. People depend on their union leaders to get them the best deal. Part of that is being realistic about what kind of a deal you can get. The way unionism is supposed to work is the leaders and the management sit down and figure out what the employer can afford. The argument is always or should always be about the company's books and whether they are being honest or low balling. But in the end the union understands no deal is any good if it bankrupts the employer.

    These union leaders lied to their members and negotiated pensions that they knew or should have known could never be paid. And now, their members are going to end up with nothing.

  • UnCivilServant||

    But is the private pension company a workable idea?

  • gaijin||

    As I see it, the biggest issue with a private pension company is that it removes some of the ability for politicians to deliver patronage in exchange for votes. As John stated "The way unionism is supposed to work is the leaders and the management sit down and figure out what the employer can afford". But when the employer is Government, there is no upper bound for what they can afford.

  • UnCivilServant||

    The key element is that a private pension company wouldn't be just for public employees, private sector workers who want the security of defined benefit can join plans as well. And it wouldn't matter how many employers you went through during your career so long as your fund(s) was/were still solvent.

  • gaijin||

    a private pension company wouldn't be just for public employees,

    That might be workable so long as no participants were deemed to have superior claims over others in case of a loss(e.g., public pensioners being held ahead of private sector pensioners). ANd also, that the private company would not be insulated from market risk via bail out.

  • John||

    But when the employer is Government, there is no upper bound for what they can afford.

    That is what they thought. But as we are finding out there is an upper limit, at least at the state and local level.

  • gaijin||

    agree, I should have added "in their way of thinking".

  • Rasilio||

    Possibly, but if the costs of a defined benefit plan were priced accurately then they would be prohibitively expensive, especially ones as generous as public employees generally are.

    Your typical elementary school teacher making $60,000 a year would be paying close to $20,000 a year for her defined benefit plan.

  • mad libertarian guy||

    These union leaders lied to their members and negotiated pensions that they knew or should have known could never be paid. And now, their members are going to end up with nothing.

    But PROFITZ!!!!

  • Certified Public Asskicker||

    Brandon Marshall says, "Hey, at least we are not Detroit!":

    It’s the little brother that, big brother wants to go out and play with his friends and the little brother is annoying, [saying], ‘Hey, can I go?' No, you can’t go, Detroit Lions. Sit back. Sit in your little city. Fix your financial problems and all of that, you know.

  • seguin||

    KULAKS! WRECKERS!

  • Lord Humungus||

    630 Pounds Of Cocaine Found On Band Bus In Texas

    Eight men on a Norteno band’s tour bus have been arrested in South Texas after more than 630 pounds of cocaine turned up in the vehicle.

    The Texas Department of Public Safety says all eight suspects face charges of possession of a controlled substance related to the drugs worth $7.3 million.

    Personal use, man.

  • Brett L||

    "We got a really good deal, and its gonna be a long tour, chu know?"

  • ||

    Charles Firth has been "sacked" by the team working with him on the Sydney Museum of Words, after he described the satirical project as a scam.

    Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/entertai.....z2kRM1Ft00

  • Ted S.||

  • The Late P Brooks||

    She’s no Charles Curtis but Elizabeth Warren may run for the 2016 Democrat nomination for president.

    And our long national nightmare of kkkorporate kkkowboy kkkapitalism will come to a close.

  • ||

    And begin the krony akkademik knightmare? (or continue it, akktually)?

  • mad libertarian guy||

    If we elect another member of the illuminati again at any point in the next 100 years ever, we deserve the ass fucking we get.

  • Lord Humungus||

    Keeper Mauled by Cougars Died 'Doing the Very Thing That She Cared So Much About'

    Radziwon-Chapman, who worked at the sanctuary for eight years and was the mother of a 5-month-old daughter, died from multiple bite injuries, with the most severe wounds around her head and neck, Dr. Christopher Young, a forensic pathologist for the Oregon State Medical Examiner's Office, told ABCNews.com today.

    I've been mauled by a cougar before... oh wait...

  • Brett L||

    Thank God those scratches didn't fester, y'know.

  • Atanarjuat||

    That sappy phrase is always moronic. She died doing the thing she loved, namely screaming in terror, frantically flailing about, and bleeding profusely as she's mauled to death?

  • Neoliberal Kochtopus||

    "I loved taking care of cougars more than being there for my new daughter"

    Fuck, lady.

  • Lord Humungus||

    Rising Up the Ladder in America: Who’s Upwardly Mobile?

    The Horatio Alger myth—that hard work and pluck will lift a person from dire circumstances to enviable success—is more than 150 years old, but it has staying power: Forty percent of Americans think it’s fairly common for someone to start off poor, work hard and eventually rise to the top of the economic heap.

    In reality, however, only 4% of Americans travel the rags-to-riches path, according to new research from the Economic Mobility Project of the Pew Charitable Trusts. And a great many who are born into the poorest segments of the population are stuck there for life, a finding that suggests the U.S. has much to do to improve social mobility.
  • John||

    And a great many who are born into the poorest segments of the population are stuck there for life, a finding that suggests the U.S. has much to do to improve social mobility.

    Maybe poverty is a cultural and behavioral problem instead of a monetary one? When we give people free shit and tell them they are suckers to work low paying jobs (and of course make those jobs nearly impossible to find), they stop working and take free shit instead of moving up the social ladder. Who could have guessed that?

  • wareagle||

    I don't know if that's governmental rather than cultural. Growing up in a free shit environment goes far in creating the impression that that's how things are supposed to be. When you are surrounded by people who never work, tough to learn a work ethic.

  • John||

    It is both. The government creates an environment where the culture thrives. I saw a speech last week by James Watson, the guy who discovered the Double Helix. He talked about growing up poor in Britain before welfare. He said back then you didn't mess up because you couldn't afford to. If you didn't work hard and do everything to succeed, you ended up in jail or starving. Now you can be a complete fuck up and spend your money on drugs and booze or whatever and still have a roof over your head and something to eat.

  • CatoTheElder||

    ObamaCare just creates new disincentives to keep people from moving from the lower quintiles of income to the next highest.

    If a guy is at 137% of poverty line, his effective income tax on the next 1% is literally thousands of percent as he loses Medicare and is force to purchase ObamaCare.

    If he take that risk in hopes of recovering the additional costs with ever higher levels of income, he'll once again face an enormous hurdle when he gets to 400% of poverty line. There all ObamaCare subsidies cease. They aren't just slowly phased out; they abruptly stop. In my own case the marginal income tax rate at 400% of pl ($62040 for married couple) is 740,000%. That's what I call a tax disincentive.

  • John||

    I honestly don't think they want people to be poor. I don't buy the evil conspiracy theories of creating a new proletariat. I think most liberals just cannot comprehend incentives and how they work and moral hazard. They are at heart very unsophisticated thinkers. I think at some level they know that and that is why they constantly assure themselves and each other how smart and nuanced they are and how dumb and simple the other side is.

  • VG Zaytsev||

    I used to think that until I learned of the subsidy claw back feature of Obamacare.

    Which is definitely punitive towards anyone trying to improve their condition.

  • Slammer||

    Also, not everyone who's "rich" stays "rich", either. People are moving up and moving down constantly.

  • CatoTheElder||

    I don't think they want people to be poor, either.

    They just want everybody to be equal. It's not an "evil conspiracy theory"; it's a high-minded ideal.

  • Enough About Palin||

    John is correct. I live in the ghetto and for the last seven months have been going home for lunch to let my puppy out. I see hundreds and hundreds of able-bodied folks who just sit on their porches or mill around. And they crank out kids like crazy.

  • Jordan||

    Gee, I wonder if gargantuan regulatory barriers and a central bank which constantly siphons their wealth off to the financial sector has anything to do with that?

  • John||

    Yeah, every time I hear someone arguing for the minimum wage I always say "so you are against giving poor and unskilled people a chance." Lots of huffing and pearl clutching ensues.

  • Marshall Gill||

    In reality, however, only 4% of Americans travel the rags-to-riches path, according to new research from the Economic Mobility Project of the Pew Charitable Trusts.

    After being caught lying about Campaign Finance Reform, how in the holy fuck is PEW still in business? Like much of what they do, this wasn't "research" it is propaganda.

  • ||

    Cbf to read the article, but I'd be interested in learning how "poor" and "rich" are defined in the context of the study. From single welfare mom to 500k/yr corner office? Probably unlikely (for a lot of reasons). 25k/yr front line worker to 80k/yr manager, analyst, freelancer, or entrepreneur? I'd be willing to bet that's a lot more than 4%

  • Brett L||

    Yes, if you read it, 57% of people born in the bottom quintile move out of that.

    Although there's this:
    Marriage or partnership, it turns out, is good for mobility: 84% of poor people with a spouse or other household member in the workforce rose out of the bottom quintile (versus 49% of single-earner families).

    So basically, if you get married, you have a 5 in 6 chance of getting out.

  • ||

    That makes sense. The bullshit 4% stat is a basically worthless throwaway number to pull from a pool of actually useful data.

  • mad libertarian guy||

    nd a great many who are born into the poorest segments of the population are stuck there for life . . .

    But the welfare system that creates multi-generational dependance on government assistance has nothing to do with it!

  • CatoTheElder||

    This should not surprise anyone who has a clue.

    The fact is that some traits that are necessary or useful to financial well-being are heritable.

    It's also a fact that some traits are inculcated in children by example at a young age.

    If you ask for citations for these facts, or don't understand their connection to this topic, you don't have a clue.

  • Steve G||

    I return to the Matt Welch appearance on Maher where the other panelist mentioned that how asians/east-asians work their asses off until they are rich, a point then summarily dismissed by Bill with simply "not everyone can do that". Right, Bill, just those with a work ethic...

  • Rasilio||

    "In reality, however, only 4% of Americans travel the rags-to-riches path, according to new research from the Economic Mobility Project of the Pew Charitable Trusts."

    This is so much bullshit.

    In my adult life I have spent more than 12 consecutive months in every single income quintile and been in the bottom quintile 3 separate times and while I may be a somewhat extreme virtually every person I know has moved across at least 3 different Quintiles through their lives.

    The problem comes in how you define "rags" and "riches" because the real meanings of those terms is assets not income but assets are almost impossible to measure since they are not reported on even in the aggregate.

    Finally, while I am sure there are some who spend their entire lives in the bottom quintile you'll pardon me if I am not bothered by this at all, it takes some serious effort to never move out of the bottom quintile in your life and if they manage to do it then it is solely because they worked to hard to make it so, not becuase society has made it hard for them to improve their lot in life.

  • ||

    “Sweden is here to crush its enemies and hear the lamentations of their women! SWEDEN IS NO LONGER FUCKING AROUND. I’ll take out this whole front row if I have to!”

    More berserk national costumes from Miss Universe here and here

  • Restoras||

    Gold, Jerry! Pure Gold!

  • seguin||

    Awesome. God damn I love the Caribbean/S. American stuff. Flamboyant as hell. No @#$@s left to give.

  • John||

    Even McArdle admits Obamacare is going to crash and burn.

    http://www.bloomberg.com/news/.....-left.html

    The most revealing and depressing part of that article is this. When the tech geeks raised concerns about their ability to deliver the website on time, they are reported to have been told “Failure is not an option.

    The Obama people seem to live in some kind of West Wing or Hollywood blockbuster fantasy world where in a dramatic scene at the White House the President yells "failure is not an option" and the top men make it happen. If there is a more immature and stupid statement than "failure is not an option" I am hard pressed to think of it. Failure may not be an option you choose but it is always an option circumstances will force on you.

    This is a product of electing a President who comes out of academia, where you think big thoughts that don't have to reflect reality, and political activism, where you just fuck with people in charge and never have to make anything work yourself. Obama has no idea how things actually get done. He knows words and big thoughts and nothing else.

  • John||

    As evil and wrong as the FDR people were, they knew how to put their policies into effect. Those policies were certainly horrible but when they decided to dictate what chickens people could buy or to put people in camps stopping erosion those things happened. And when they decided to make the country fight a total war, it did even though that came with all of the waste and insanity associated with such a project. Can you imagine the Obama clowns doing that? "We need jet fighters, failure is not an option." "We need to invade Normandy before the 42 mid-terms, failure is not an option". If it didn't do so much damage to the country, it would be funny.

  • Spoonman.||

    When FDR put the Japanese in concentration camps, he succeeded at that heinously evil project.

    Obama would be rounding up Koreans.

  • John||

    +100. And he would have starved them to death because the people in charge were too stupid and corrupt to properly provide food and shelter.

  • DontShootMe||

    Nah, the people in the camps would break out, because ATF agents would be running guns into the concentration camps.

  • Restoras||

    Well let's face it, Liberals live in an actual, real fantasyland that is inside thier own heads. Quoting movie lines out of the context of the actual history is just par for the course, nevermind of course that movies are entertainment, or fantasyland on a screen which fits in perfectly with their mindset.

    I guess no one ever told them about the remarks that Eisenhower prepared in the event that the D-Day landings failed. Failure was an option and he knew it. That these shitheads don't know it only speaks to their arrogance and stupidity.

  • John||

    Yes. How could anyone with any real responsibility convince themselves failure can't happen? Only someone who thinks reality is like the movies.

  • Restoras||

    Are movies are the modern equivalent of Plato's Cave to Liberals.

  • BakedPenguin||

    McArdle is married to Suderman. Whatever cocktail party jokes you want to make, I suspect she is well informed on just how fucked up O-care is.

  • CatoTheElder||

    I love your reference to the Hollywood line, "Failure is not an option!"

    It also seems like the Obama Administration characters imagine that they can order up a tech surge of computer geniuses who can crack the bad guy's 20 character password, redirect the protocols, reprogram the interfaces, figure out the weapons deactivation sequence, and sequence the denouement in the final five minutes of the show.

  • UnCivilServant||

    "Failure is always an option" -Adam Savage

    When entertainers have more wisdom than the sitting prsident...

  • robc||

    Dammit, you beat me to that. I guess I should have reloaded.

  • ||

    For a few weeks in my office the whiteboard slogan was "there is always the Do Nothing option." So I guess I'm a copy cat.

  • robc||

    As Mythbusters likes to say "Failure is always an option."

    They apparently even sell that phrase on a t-shirt.

  • UnCivilServant||

    I'm scared whenever I say something that pops out of another commentator. It makes me wonder what part of my brain broke.

  • robc||

    The part that kept you from being a social prick.

  • UnCivilServant||

    Yes, I'm an asshole, and a hypocrite, but I'm okay with that because I also realized I was evil. Now my conscience is soothed.

  • Pro Libertate||

    We accept you, one of us! Gooble Gobble!

  • Restoras||

    Well Suderman has already burned every cocktail party bridge for the rest of this administration so she may as well do some actual, thorough reporting.

  • Brett L||

    If failure wasn't an option, maybe they should have treated the whole implementation like their very livelihoods depended on it, rather than making politically expedient decisions every day that sapped their ability to implement this. This is Executive Mgmt 101. If its your top priority, make those decisions first, then all your others.

  • NoVAHockey||

    I think her point on about the restrictive access to hospitals and other providers is right. That's what's really going to bring this thing down

  • John||

    People may accept a new reality of writing a bigger check. But they are not going to accept a new reality of not being able to see a doctor. And no amount of "but what about the poor" is going to get them to do that. Everyone loves helping the poor right up until they have to pay for it.

  • CatoTheElder||

    Look, I don't mind helping poor people. In fact, I rather like having the ability to help poor people in desperate situations, and it makes me feel good when I do it.

    What pisses me off is when somebody else coerces me with threats of violence to surrender my money to him so that he can help the poor, and then he uses that money to fly on his own personal, tricked out 747 to play golf with Tiger Woods (or to his Texas ranch to clear brush, or whatever) and to line the pockets of Wall Street investment bankers and crony crapitalists.

    It is doubly irritating when the scheme whereby the poor are helped not only rips me off, but also destroys the moral, social, and economic fabric of a once-successful country.

  • John||

    I don't mind helping the poor either. But my tolerance for doing so is different than yours. And I am not going to give up real standard of living to do it. I am just like most people and at heart selfish. Liberals don't get that.

  • mad libertarian guy||

    This is a product of electing a President who comes out of academia, where you think big thoughts that don't have to reflect reality, and political activism, where you just fuck with people in charge and never have to make anything work yourself.

    But he told me that if he could code, he would have done it all himself!

    President Obama wanted to go in himself and fix glitches that have plagued HealthCare.gov since its rollout last month, he told a crowd Friday at the Port of New Orleans, "but," he added, "I don't write code."

    Obama is such a narcissistic fuck.

    And how can anyone with any sense of intellectual honesty describe the Obamacare website as having "glitches?"

    NOTHING FUCKING WORKS.

  • Steve G||

    Reminds me of the old leadership vs management debate that happens regularly in military education circles. Leadership is almost universally held up as most important(vision, drive, charisma, etc), but in this humble guys' opinion, there is no substitute for a good manager since that poor anonymous sap actually puts the "vision" into action.

  • ||

    Excuse me, but by what stretch of the imagination is Obama "out of academia"?

    The only faculty position he ever had was as an adjunct professor. His only published works are a handful of semi-fictitious (and likely ghost written) books.

    Except for a very short, and generally unsuccessful, stint in investment banking Obama has been nothing but a political activist.

    Mind you, none of this takes away from your larger point regarding his incompetence.

  • Lord Humungus||

    Stop thanking the troops for me: No, they don’t protect our freedoms!

    Freedom has become one of those politically charged terms that means whatever people need it to mean. There is no coherent conception of freedom, though, in which it only exists at the pleasure of the U.S. military. It’s simply a non sequitur. The “freedoms” most Americans think of when they hear the term are enshrined in constitutional and statutory law. They are in no way dependent on the size, scope or even the existence of the U.S. military. If John Lennon’s ghost assumed dictatorial control of the U.S. government tomorrow and, as his first order of business, disbanded the entire military, Americans’ “freedoms” would not suddenly vanish.
  • John||

    They don't protect our freedom. They protect our ability to protect our own freedom. If we want to give away our freedom to the government, there is nothing the troops can do about that. In the end, we are as free as we, as a society, want to be.

  • robc||

    Im fine with saying they protect our freedoms. They also spend 90% of their time being ordered to do other shit that doesnt help along those lines at all.

  • John||

    yeah, but even beyond that debate, all the troops in the world won't stop the drug war or the NSA. The threat to our freedom is ourselves.

  • robc||

    That is true.

    But they do protect our freedoms from the outside.

    I just hate them being oversees when the Canadians continue to mass along the border.

  • robc||

    overseas.

  • mad libertarian guy||

    But they do protect our freedoms from the outside.

    The US military hasn't undergone a military engagement which comes anywhere close to "protecting my freedoms" in my lifetime.

    Perhaps the mere existence of the military disincentivizes attack, but their core mission has not been to protect my freedom in decades.

  • Neoliberal Kochtopus||

    Perhaps the mere existence of the military disincentivizes attack, but their core mission has not been to protect my freedom in decades.

    What? So you admit that their existence may protect your freedoms, but they still don't protect your freedoms?

  • db||

    Bingo. The trope of the primary purpose of the military being there to protect freedom mainly serves to camoflauge every exertion of force abroad as a defense of freedom. One wouod hope eventually it wears thin.

  • gaijin||

    Who the heck is Justin Doolittle?

  • Lord Humungus||

    he talks with the animals!

  • Outlaw||

    Thank you for blowing up that Iraqi.

    Without your brave sacrifice I wouldn't be free to ask bureaucrats for permission for every little thing here at home!

  • ||

    Along those lines:

    Fred Reed on Veterans Day.

    The rest of the planet pays a high price for our freedom. This is no doubt justified because we are the city of the hill, a light to the nations, bringing democracy and human rights to a globe thirsty for improvement by us. I have just never seen it. I like the people at the Legion halls, at birthdays for the Marine Corps, but I may be a little less proud of what we did.
  • The Late P Brooks||

    Also, who the fuck is Charles Curtis? Is that one of Lex Luthor's pseudonyms?

  • DontShootMe||

  • Lord Humungus||

    Official: Liberian president's convoy smuggled pot

    Investigators for Liberia's Drug Enforcement Agency say they are questioning the head of the presidential motorcade and three others for allegedly using the convoy to smuggle more than 297 kilograms (654 pounds) of marijuana into Liberia from neighboring Sierra Leone.
  • waffles||

    My SO spent 3 months in Liberia and this is probably the least corrupt thing you could witness there. They have shit-tons of stupid laws but no enforcement mechanisms. They have shit-tons of pointless bureaucratic titles running around clucking about the powers of their office but nothing ever gets done. People don't even go to work if it's raining.

    And the quality of that marijuana? Think mexican brick weed.

  • ||

    Recent revelations about NSA spying have given fresh impetus to the dream of a purely German Internet.

    more

  • Lord Humungus||

    You know who else wanted a pure Germany?

  • Rich||

    Evian?

  • ||

    The Kaiser?

  • Hillary's Clitdong||

    Arminius?

  • Pro Libertate||

    Martin Luther?

  • Entropy Void||

    Charles Martel?

  • Pro Libertate||

    The Hammer!

  • Rasilio||

    What? Not enough Scheisse porn out there for them?

  • Rich||

  • UnCivilServant||

    How are we going to be blamed for causing that?

  • DontShootMe||

    It's those stupid solar observing satellites. By observing the sun, we are affecting it.

  • SugarFree||

    It's because you don't eat enough organic kale.

  • ||

  • SugarFree||

    It's the only time I feel sexy.

  • Ted S.||

    Another Maunder Minmum?

  • Brett L||

    Even baby otters think you should squat more bro.

  • Longtorso, Johnny||

    Behind Obama’s lie, our own immaturity
    We can't handle the truth

    ...Beyond that, reforming such a huge chunk of the U.S. economy necessarily leads to often unanticipated changes for millions of Americans.

    Acknowledging that reality would have been the honest thing to do. So would asking healthier and wealthier Americans to sacrifice for the greater good of ensuring every American have health-care coverage....

    ...Voters want progress without sacrifice or inconvenience. Seemingly the only path to change is telling voters what they want to hear.

    So accuse Obama of lying about health-care reform — but understand the simple underlying reality: we can’t handle the truth.

  • gaijin||

    So accuse Obama of lying about health-care reform — but understand the simple underlying reality: we can’t handle the truth.

    'We' is the problem with this point of view.

  • John||

    When I was in college I used to think the world was about big thoughts. I thought that because I had never done that much and didn't know better. I should have known better but I didn't. But as I got out in the world and saw how things actually worked I realized how wrong I was. Big thoughts only matter if you get the details right. Without the details the big thoughts are just platitudes. And since the details are the hardest part, the details dominate what you do. Rarely do you get a chance to think big thoughts because actually doing things means being consumed with the details and the inherent messiness of reality.

    Obama and his people never learned that lesson. They have all of the maturity of an earnest college liberal arts major. If I were an evil bond villain and wanted to destroy American liberalism, a pretty good plan would be to give them real power and put an immature fuck up like Obama in charge. If this doesn't discredit them, then nothing will and we are all just wasting our time trying to stop them.

  • robc||

    When I was in college I used to think the world was about big thoughts...Big thoughts only matter if you get the details right.

    Advantage: engineering school.

  • John||

    I had spent my youth working on farms. If there is ever a place that should have taught me that, that should have been it. I could have taken engineering and probably not learned that lesson until I was older. It was just a flaw of my youth.

    But regardless, I grew up and figured out the truth. Obama and pretty much our entire political class never have.

  • robc||

    Im sure you did learn it on the farm. You just thought school would be about something else.

  • John||

    That is very true Rob.

  • Lord Humungus||

    Agreed - in my college days I eventually called myself an "anti-intellectual" because I got sick of the blathering and philosophical/political discussions that went nowhere.

  • John||

    The funny thing is that if you walk away from all of that bullshit and go out in the world you wind up figuring a lot of those questions out a lot better than you ever did back then. I think a hell of a lot more clearly than I did in college. And that is entirely due to my rejection of such things and my embrace of the real world.

  • Rich||

    "When all is said and done, more is said than done."

  • CatoTheElder||

    Same here. I was in engineering school back when they still had serious liberal arts courses in the core curriculum. I, too, thought that all those liberal arts courses were useless bullshit that, like you say, went nowhere. Even macroeconomics seemed like so much bullshit when I was an undergrad (what did Harry Truman say about it?)

    Now I rather appreciate that liberal arts were part of my college core curriculum. They were not directly applicable in anything I've done in my career. They are really of very little use in accomplishing a project, but they are most helpful in determining which projects to undertake. The big ideas are indeed useful to understand the world.

    For example, if Obama were to understand Hayek's big idea, he would have known not to embark upon the path he has taken.

  • H. ReardEn||

    Whoever says 'Don't sweat the small stuff' has never done anything of any complexity. The little stuff is what gets you every time. Everyone has their eyes on the big things so they don't get forgotten. But have 20 guys standing around because no one made sure that we have the nut and bolts on hand, and you learn in a big hurry to 'sweat the small stuff'.

  • SugarFree||

    He only hits us because he loves us so much.

  • gaijin||

    Please sir may I have another

  • SugarFree||

    "Damn, girl. Sometimes you make me so crazy!"

  • Brett L||

    Its only that GODDAMN ROMNEY and the GODDAMN WAR that Bush left him saddled with that makes him hit us.

  • SugarFree||

    And that time he found out we had changed the password on our phone and email. It's not spying, he's trying to keep us safe.

  • SugarFree||

    Just like hitting us until we peed blood when we get home 10 minutes late after spin class. He was just so worried that something had happened to us. We shouldn't scare him like that.

  • Brett L||

    I don't know. My friends say that he doesn't have to love me so violently, but I really think I need someone passionate.

  • wareagle||

    So would asking healthier and wealthier Americans to sacrifice for the greater good of ensuring every American have health-care coverage....

    there's that suicide pact again.

  • John||

    And there is the reason why socialism always fails. It is just a restatement of the old Thatcher adage about running out of other people's money. People will not as a general rule willingly make sacrifices for the greater good. Socialism is built on the assumption they will and thus either fails or descends into tyranny by the gun every time.

  • ||

    People will not as a general rule willingly make sacrifices for the greater good.

    The fatal flaw of the red age... Our lust for life had gone away with the rent we hated

  • John||

    Who lived a more interesting life, someone like my grandfather who started from nothing and spent his life building something or someone like one of the Rockefeller kids who spent their lives with everything being handed to them searching for meaning and ways to cut through the boredom?

    I think there is at least a decent argument for the former.

  • ||

    I don't understand the connection, but I agree - there is certainly something to be said for blazing your own path (although if I'm perfectly honest I'd rather inherit a fortune and do nothing). Those particular lyrics just reinforce your original point, and I happened to have re-listened to Chutes Too Narrow last night. It wasn't an argument. (Actually the song itself is relatively anti-capitalist, but resigns itself to capitalism being preferable to utopian schemes)

  • John||

    The interesting question is what happens if we do some day see the end of scarcity where no one has to work for anything. Our machines just do everything for us.

    I think there is a decent possibility that we would have built our own hell in that case.

  • EDG reppin' LBC||

    I don't know if it would be a hell. We would have more time to pursue more creative or challenging pursuits. Instead of going to work for 8 hours a day, you and your pals can start a thrash band. Instead of working 40 a week, you could hike the Appalachian Trail and finally write Birds of Appalachia. Hell you could have plenty of fun making sexy time with your wife. Post-scarcity seems pretty good.

  • John||

    Some would do that EDG. But most people don't handle such freedom from responsibility that well. Look at how the lives the children of the super rich turned out? A few of them did fine. But a lot of them went bat shit insane. I suspect a good portion of society would do the same in a world without scarcity.

  • ||

    Not only that, but combine the end of scarcity with radical life-extending technologies and it definitely creates some scenarios that I don't think we've necessarily evolved as human beings to accommodate. Not to say that we won't, but it would certainly be a transition that could be psychologically disruptive.

  • CatoTheElder||

    Great song -- thanks for this link!

  • VG Zaytsev||

    So would asking healthier and wealthier Americans to sacrifice for the greater good

    No lie in that phrase, right?

  • EDG reppin' LBC||

    Asking with a gun.

  • Enough About Palin||

    We are the problems we've been waiting for.

  • Rasilio||

    "So accuse Obama of lying about health-care reform — but understand the simple underlying reality: we can’t handle the truth."

    Translation: We are incapable of convincing people to sign on to our grand schemes honestly so we will lie to them to make them do what we want them to do then blame them for it when things don't go right.

  • John||

    Th UK's slide into insanity continues.

    http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/u.....z2kFWBTCj9

    Police hunting a runaway terror suspect swooped on a mosque in West London and nabbed… a tabloid newspaper reporter.

    The journalist had been distributing posters in the area around the mosque where Mohammed Ahmed Mohamed dodged the long arm of the law by donning a burka, offering a reward for the 27-year-old Somali-born Briton’s arrest.

    A mob soon gathered and someone complained to Plod.

  • Longtorso, Johnny||

    Cicily Daniels and Brett Macias
    ...The couple met in 2010 while working on a production of “My Mother’s Lesbian Jewish Wiccan Wedding,” part of the New York Musical Theater Festival.

  • mad libertarian guy||

    Obama the Green (Lobby Facilitator):

    But the ethanol era has proven far more damaging to the environment than politicians promised and much worse than the government admits today.

    As farmers rushed to find new places to plant corn, they wiped out millions of acres of conservation land, destroyed habitat and contaminated water supplies, an Associated Press investigation found.

    Five million acres of land set aside for conservation — more than Yellowstone, Everglades and Yosemite National Parks combined — have been converted on Obama's watch.

    Landowners filled in wetlands. They plowed into pristine prairies, releasing carbon dioxide that had been locked in the soil.

    Sprayers pumped out billions of pounds of fertilizer, some of which seeped into drinking water, polluted rivers and worsened the huge dead zone in the Gulf of Mexico where marine life can't survive.

    The consequences are so severe that environmentalists and many scientists have now rejected corn-based ethanol as bad environmental policy. But the Obama administration stands by it, highlighting its benefits to the farming industry rather than any negative consequences.

    Obama has a long track record of trading objective environmental harm in exchange for votes and the ability to dole out cash to donors in the form of "investments."

  • UnCivilServant||

    I'll bet there's life adapting to the chemical conditions ion the dead zone to escape predation - the longer they can resist the chemicals, the better they can hide in the toxic spills. Eventually some will realize that their fellow adaptees are goot eats, and we get a new ecosystem which will have to be protected by continuing the pollution.

    Also, the waters off Tokyo harbor are among the most densely populated marine landscape because of the cneturies of runoff from the city providing a vast and ready food source for the bottom of the chain.

  • Rebekah||

    It isn't so much the chemicals themselves that are the problem in estuarial waters; it's the cycle of massive algae blooms and die-offs. Nitrogen from agricultural run-off causes an algae bloom, which results in huge daily swings from hyperoxia during the day to hypoxia at night (since algae respire in the absence of sunlight just like anything else). There aren't many heterotrophic organisms that can survive such conditions.

    (On a related note, environmental scientists have experimented with seeding the ocean with iron to sequester carbon by causing algae blooms. It's a truly horrible idea that fortunately hasn't made it off the ground on a large scale, yet.)

  • CatoTheElder||

    I remember when the ethanol mandate was first being debated, something like 20 years ago, that this phenomenon was predicted. It was a very simple prediction that didn't require computer models of an unfathomably complex system.

    Fortunately, the GMO corn requires somewhat less fertilizer, but the increase in demand way offsets any savings. And, of course, the greenies want to stop GMO corn.

  • CatoTheElder||

    Another example of why just about anything that has widespread bipartisan support is bound to turn out bad.

  • Rich||

  • BakedPenguin||

    It was probably given to this guy.

    I wonder what Lenore Skenazy thinks about that.

  • Eduard van Haalen||

    "By merely threatening to pass laws that increase the size of government, the drafters encourage lobbying efforts aimed at defeating them....each time a bill is passed a tool for fundraising is removed. Or, to put it more bluntly, an opportunity for extortion is foreclosed.

    "...Of course, political extortion can be subtle. There is an implicit threat whenever congress passes laws so complex that they can only be understood by those who wrote them....they are essentially saying "You may or may not be breaking the law. Pay me for my services and I'll give you the answer."

    "...Anita Dunn served as Obama's communications director during the president's first term. During her time in the White House she was an outspoken critic of the hedge fund industry. Unsurprisingly, she became a consultant upon leaving the White House. The firm she joined specializes in "corporate communications." Also unsurprisingly, she helped the firm craft a proposal that went to hedge funds for the ostensible purpose of helping them boost their image. The proposal offered to develop a "paid media" campaign that would "raise awareness about the positive role that hedge funds play in the American economy.""

    http://townhall.com/columnists.....n-n1743810

  • Eduard van Haalen||

    "JFK Was an Unapologetic Liberal


    "His underrated career as ideological warrior

    "...neither the Camelot mystique nor Kennedy’s premature death can fully explain his continuing appeal....I would submit that Kennedy’s hold on us stems also from the way he used the presidency, his commitment to exercising his power to address social needs, his belief that government could harness expert knowledge to solve problems—in short, from his liberalism....

    "As an activist, Kennedy called on Americans to trust government to address the nation’s problems; as a pragmatist, he bade them to believe that dedicated public servants could again muster, as they had during the New Deal, the requisite know-how. In word and in deed, JFK put the weight of his presidency behind a liberal program. He backed a demand-side—not supply-side—tax cut designed to put money in people’s hands to stimulate short-term economic activity. The War on Poverty (an idea he had rolled out during the campaign) sought to alleviate penury, especially among the elderly, by pushing for Medicare and expanded Social Security benefits. The President’s Commission on the Status of Women endorsed workplace equality, child care facilities for working women, paid maternity leave, better Social Security benefits for widows, and equal pay for comparable work. Federal employees got collective bargaining...."

    http://www.newrepublic.com/art.....ic-liberal

  • John||

    "JFK Was an Unapologetic Liberal


    Nothing says unapologetic liberal like freaking out when Sammy Davis Junior brings his white wife to the White House.

  • Ted S.||

    Fuck the Kennedy years.

  • ||

    In their ears

  • ||

    With spears

  • The Late P Brooks||

    They plowed into pristine prairies, releasing carbon dioxide that had been locked in the soil.

    On my list of objections to ethanol, this is pretty far down the list.

    Of course, unlike most of the people I now, I am not a bird hunter.

  • Ted S.||

    Any idea, no matter how nonsensical it may seem, will be given a hearing in the press if it's presented as being "green".

    Here's a several years old example saying we need more wood buildings because concrete is bad for the environment.

  • Brett L||

    Right up until the giant fire.

  • CatoTheElder||

    Where are all these pristine prairies with CO2 deposits in the top soil?

    Seriously? Were they watered with carbonated Brawndo or something? Sure, plowing undisturbed soil would expose organic material to oxygen, but how could this oxidation source be materially greater than the CO2 sink of the corn crop?

    The increase in usage of prairie land as cropland for corn production is a habitat problem, not a GHG problem. The bozo journalist can't get his own environmental storyline right.

  • Lord Humungus||

    Dem. Rep.: 'I Think the President Was Grossly Misleading to the American Public'

    "I think the president was grossly misleading to the American public. I know right away as a veterinarian, I have my own business, that my policies got cancelled even before the Affordable Care Act. I know that I would change policies on a regular basis, trying to find the best deal for myself and my employees. But a lot of Americans, a lot of Oregonians, have stayed with the same policy for a number of years and are shocked that their policy got cancelled.

    "So I think the president saying you could stay with it and not being honest that a lot of these policies were going to get cancelled was grossly misleading to the American public and is causing added stress and added strife as we go through a really difficult time with health care."

    Schrader also accused White House press secretary Jay Carney of "double talk" for also misleading on Obamacare.
  • John||

    It is fun to laugh at liberals who feel betrayed by Obama's lying. But we should be careful not to let them use Obama's lying as a way to change the subject from the more important fact that Obama's program is a complete disaster that is doing all kinds of harm.

    The lie is only relevant because the program is so bad.

  • Sevo||

    "The lie is only relevant because the program is so bad."

    It is so bad that it took outright, knowing lies to get it passed.

  • CatoTheElder||

    The website fiasco, policy cancellations, and rate hikes versus individual policies are just the first squalls before the ObamaCare typhoon hits with full force.

    The real weeping and gnashing of teeth will be heard when people learn that they can't really get an acceptably convenient doctor's appointment under ObamaCare.

    But, not to worry, at the Fluke woman will get her contraceptives and other gynecological care with no out-of-pocket cost (worth $1240/year according to the Obamatons) and Julia's daughter will be able to stay on her plan until she is 26.

    The typhoon is a pretty good analogy 'cause right in the middle of the mess ObamaCare is going to suffer an insurance death spiral.

  • ||

    You should have seen his equipment! I screamed like a stuck pig. Takes a big hammer to drive a big nail.

    The Literary Review is tweeting lines from the shortlist for its Bad Sex Awards 2013

  • Lord Humungus||

    Typhoon Haiyan 'the result of climate change'
    The Philippines delegate at the UN Climate Change talks that began on Monday has blamed Typhoon Haiyan on climate change, and urged sceptics to 'get off their ivory towers'



    Mr Sano, whose family is from Tacloban – one of the worst hit areas – announced that he was going on hunger strike until "a meaningful outcome is in sight". Representatives from 190 nations have gathered in Poland to try and thrash out a new pact to fight global warming.

    "What my country is going through as a result of this extreme climate event is madness.

    "We can fix this. We can stop this madness. Right now, right here," Mr Sano said, in a speech which received a standing ovation from his fellow delegates.
  • SugarFree||

    "Weather isn't climate, unless it suits our arguments."

  • robc||

    If the typhoon is climate change, isnt the complete lack of hurricanes in the atlantic also climate change?

  • SugarFree||

    Shh. Pay not attention to the man behind the curtain...

    Plait has to dry-hump this hobby-horse as well.

    My urge to troll him is strong. On every astronomy article I want to post "What does this have to do with climate change?" and the opposite on every astronomy article.

  • Brett L||

    My theory is that the Atlantic, being shallower, dumped a bunch of its deep ocean heat into the surface layers in 2004-2006. The deep Pacific is probably doing the same. If you do the boundary layer analysis, either one can cause hurricanes, but satellite data continue to show that we aren't getting additional energy from the atmosphere compared to previous years, so changes should come from the other direction.

  • waffles||

    Now is this heat-dumping man made or is it a Gift from Gaia? Because if the former it is probably bad and if the latter we need more people to eat vegetarian and ban plastic bags.

  • waffles||

    No I think I'm confused.

  • Brett L||

    Well, this is, I will say first, a totally amateur theory and I am only basing it on some hastily done estimates of boundary layer estimations and only the information that makes the front page, but probably whatever man-made part there was is thrice diluted.

  • Pro Libertate||

    And io9 yesterday made fun of some AGW skeptic blog saying it wasn't evidence of AGW. Because that's insane to suggest.

  • Eduard van Haalen||

    "Confessions Of A Syrian Activist: “I Want Assad To Win”

    "...The activist threw himself into Syria’s revolution from its early days. He organized protests, documented the deadly crackdowns and disseminated the news, risking his life. When the opposition took up arms, he worked closely with rebel groups, helping to spread their message of resistance and taking toll of the war’s carnage in places journalists couldn’t reach. He has won widespread recognition for his work, and he remains deeply involved in the struggle today — though he no longer calls it a revolution. In fact, he thinks it needs to end.

    "...he believes that his message, unpopular among his revolutionary colleagues, is one they need to hear — that their revolution has ended; that a dangerous wave of Islamic extremism has welled up in its place; that they should work to stop the fighting now; and that if they can’t, they should hope it’s Syrian President Bashar al-Assad who wins."

    http://www.buzzfeed.com/mikegi.....sad-to-win

  • grrizzly||

    I creepy thing happened to me over the weekend. Saturday night my bf and I bought a package of Pillsbury Crescents cans at Costco. We’d never bought this before anywhere. Then Sunday night I saw an ad with a recipe for Pillsbury Crescents with chocolate chips on a news website that has nothing to do with cooking or baking. Admittedly I thought about baking rolls with chocolate chips on Sunday but I didn't search for any recipes online. The online ads often follow my browsing history or have nothing to do with me, but this one was just creepy.

  • robc||

    Cash and no membership cards.

    Problem solved.

  • SugarFree||

    "Pillsbury Crescents with chocolate chips"

    This is the most disturbing part of the story.

  • Lord Humungus||

    I just threw up a little.

  • Capt. Rimmer||

    Septic tank ads have been following me around for years now....

  • ||

    Are you Captain "Ace" Rimmer?

  • Capt. Rimmer||

    I wish. Smoke me a kipper.

  • ||

    What a guy.

  • Steve G||

    Squatty Potty

  • John||

    I bought a Nook this weekend to use for a professional class. Tablets are really great for classes that have huge reading that comes in the form of big hand typed binders that are hung on the web in PDF format. But I hooked it up and it figured out after about five minutes of use that I was a google user and connected my gmail for me.

    It was creepy as hell. I didn't want my email on that tablet. And I never told it I had a gmail account. It just figured it out and wanted to know my password on its own.

  • grrizzly||

    At least it asked for a password. I've changed my Amazon password a couple of times this year. My Kindle Fire hasn't asked me to re-enter the password even once and is happy to place my Amazon orders for me as if nothing happened.

  • UnCivilServant||

    So if I stole it, I could make you buy stuff?

  • grrizzly||

    I'm not sure if you can change the shipping address.

  • Entropy Void||

    PenalTax!

  • DaveSs||

    Kindle devices don't require the password because Amazon recognizes the device's unique ID.

    So, if you ever lose it you need to deactivate it on the amazon site.

    I suspect there is a setting somewhere that you can turn on to always require the password.

  • John||

    The Democratic Party's soul is Lizzie Warren

    http://www.newrepublic.com/art.....-nightmare

    I have to agree with the New Republic. Warren is the embodiment of everything the Democratic Party is. She is a rich elitist who made millions doing the very things she claims to hate. She is an academic fraud who is one of the worst examples of the excesses of affirmative action. She is a total economic illiterate and fake populist demagogue.

    Yeah, she is the soul of the Democratic Party. And the Party owes it to America to select her as the nominee.

  • SugarFree||

    The soul do the Democratic Party is a fake Indian commie that looks like a dried up cat turd? I'm convinced.

  • John||

    How could you not be?

  • Jordan||

    +1 peace pipe

  • Restoras||

    Which would be the more hilrious adminstration; Elizabeth Warren, Hillary Clinton, or Joe Biden?

    Honestly, the lulz are going to be EPIC.

  • SugarFree||

    Joe Biden, because the media would have to 180 from years of treating him like a nutty uncle to demanding that we take him seriously. And he's a gaffe machine.

    Warren and Clinton will have the same cover as Obama: "You only disagree with her because she's a woman!"

  • John||

    Joe Biden would force the media to spend four years pretending he was smart, because it is axiomatic that every Democrat is smart. The resulting contortions would be hysterical.

  • John||

    I heard this weekend that in three years the Braves are moving to a new publicly funded stadium in Cobb County. I used to live in Atlanta. Turner Field is one of the nicer stadiums in baseball. It is easy to get to. There isn't a bad sight line in the house. And it was just built in 1996. Yet, somehow the Cobb county tax payers are being screwed over to pay for a new one. That is just pathetic.

  • mad libertarian guy||

    Mobile homes now have a longer life than hundred million dollar sports venues. It's one of the welfare schemes for the rich that is most infuriating.

  • John||

    It is. It is one thing for the Cleveland to build the Browns a stadium. That is bad enough but at least Cleveland Stadium was a real dump no one wanted to go to. Turner Field is great. At least as of the mid 00s, everyone in Atlanta loved it. And now the taxpayers are building another one?

    And they are also building a new stadium for the Falcons, even though the Georgia Dome is only 20 years old and a good enough facility to host the SEC title game every year. It is a whole new level of theft.

  • Restoras||

    Might be a ploy to get what they want. The Patriots did something similar.

  • Kid Xenocles||

    To their rare credit, Massachusetts and Boston both told Kraft to go fuck himself.

  • UnCivilServant||

    Any statium deal should include the municipality gaining shares of the team in question. Eventually, the team won't be able to leave because the locality owns it.

  • John||

    That is how Green Bay did it. And the franchise should have to pay out dividends that are divided amongst the public similar to how oil revues are divided in Alaska.

  • ||

    It's gotten so insane that they tried to get us to pay $217 million fixing up the 50 year old Astrodome with a brand new stadium right next door. Thank god my fellow voters had some sense.

  • John||

    I would have thought the Stock Show would have been ecstatic to move to Reliant Stadium.

  • Brett L||

    No, they were. When Reliant got built, they tried to tell the Rodeo guys they could have the old Astrodome, and the Rodeo explained that their 3 weeks brought in waaay more money than 8 (or even 13) home football games. No way were they the stepchildren who were inheriting the shitty old Astrodome.

  • Whahappan?||

    Why do you hate Americas Pastime, John?

  • Floridian||

    Way OT:
    So my energy provider is offering a $20000 credit on solar systems and the Feds offer a 30% rebate on solar systems. Estimate for a 10kw system range from 50-70k. I live in Florida and the back of my home faces south. The energy company will buy my extra energy production in the form of a credit. Is this a sound investment? Anyone done this?

  • mad libertarian guy||

    No.

    The cost will still be far higher for installation that you will ever save in energy costs.

  • Lord Humungus||

    but with the coming zombie apocalypse, he'll be watching his Gilligan Island reruns in comfort while we're scratching out a feeble existence inside of a refurbished prison.

  • Floridian||

    Plus I won't have the guzz-o-line you crave with my all electric setup.

  • db||

    Plus maintenance. Those rhings have to be kept clean and the power output of solar cells degrades with time. I looked into this and into a wind turbine years ago (I was principled and refused to take.subsidies or tax.breaks into account) and it would have taken about 90years to pay off at my then current electricity rates. The expected lifetime of the systems was considerably shorter than that.

    Batteries, inverters, switchgear also degrade over time and need maintenqnce.

  • Floridian||

    I don't mind getting subsidies because I pay 60k a year in taxes so I see it as getting my money back

  • Brett L||

    It depends. Do you think you can get a premium for it when you resell the house equal to the difference. (If my math is right, about $30k minus the power savings/purchases.)

  • Brett L||

    My guess is that you're producing maybe 50 kWh/day. So based on the going base rate, you can probably figure an approximate monthly figure. For ease of use, say its $150, then you have 200 months to break-even (assuming no maintenance costs). So you could figure out if your home-value premium were worth that.

  • Floridian||

    So 16-17 years to break even. Probably better to just invest the money in my 401k to off set the cost of electricity.

  • Brett L||

    I mean, you should check your power bill, I could be off by 50% low. If you use 25kWh/day average and your power bill, excluding fees, is $200/month then your rate is $400/month and your break-even is 6-7 years depending on electricity price fluctuation. Just pointing out what I believe are the relevant factors to break even.

    There are probably people who have had similar systems for 3-5 years who can give you maintenance cost estimates, too. Getting $30k towards such a system would be worth investigating if I didn't have a gigantic old oak completely shading the south side of my house.

  • Floridian||

    My use is 63 kW a day. I estimate I can provide 75 percent of my power which cost 300 month. This means 225 a month in savings. On a 30k system I think I can break even in 11 years. Long return on investment. That assumes stagnant energy prices and no maintenance.

  • Floridian||

    I don't plan on selling. I can't predict the future but my house is in a location I love and is more than enough space for me and the wife.

  • Protagoronus||

    Does the solar setup increase the lifetime of your roof?

  • Floridian||

    No idea

  • Sevo||

    "I live in Florida"

    How do they do in a hurricane?

  • Floridian||

    I'm in Orlando so hurricanes are as much of a concern

  • Capt. Rimmer||

    http://www.theguardian.com/wor.....s-plummets

    Sweden closes four prisons as number of inmates plummets. Partial explanation for the sudden drop in admissions may be that Swedish courts have given more lenient sentences for drug offences.

  • Restoras||

    I wonder if they fired the prison guards?

  • Capt. Rimmer||

    Probably sent off to raid Denmark?

  • Sevo||

    SF city gov't finds that reality is a bitch:
    "CleanPowerSF remains mired in politics"
    ..."the conditions that supervisors placed on it. They want competitive prices, so San Francisco residents will embrace the voluntary program. They want most, if not all, of CleanPowerSF's electricity to come from renewable sources such as the sun and wind. They want San Francisco to generate its own renewable power. And they want local workers to build those facilities."
    Damn unicorns are hard to catch!
    http://www.sfgate.com/science/.....975691.php

  • John||

    They want to feel smug but not have to pay for it in any way. That pretty much sums up the entire population of San Fransisco. If there is any place on earth where the residents deserve to have the lights go out, San Fransisco is it.

  • Slammer||

  • Warty||

    Competent death metal. Excellent.

  • Lord Humungus||

    I'm suddenly really hooked listening to Alcest.

  • Slammer||

  • Lord Humungus||

    I like the shoegaze/metal blend.

    Also discovered - but haven't bought anything yet - from these guys:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tvcgBgb8o0Q

  • Slammer||

  • Lord Humungus||

    ah - some more stuff to add to my want list - thanks!

  • Lord Humungus||

    Rare Color Photographs from the Trenches of World War I

    And sometimes, with luck, we stumble upon scenes from a “pre-color” era captured with experimental color processes. The vibrant photos from World War I posted in this gallery are examples of this surprisingly variegated, many-hued world.

    The autochrome, more formally known as the Autochrome Lumière, was attributed to two brothers, Auguste and Louis Lumière — French photographers also credited with the invention of early motion-picture equipment. Although other innovators had discovered ways to bring color to images through tint and screen processing, the autochrome, debuting in 1904, utilized a number of emulsion layers (including one consisting of dyed potato starch) — locking in natural color on a permanent glass negative.
  • Lord Humungus||

    http://lightbox.time.com/2013/.....i/photo/9/

    wow. I read about this but the picture certainly adds a new perspective.

    A crater caused by the explosion of 19 mines placed underneath German positions near Messines in West Flanders by the British on June 7, 1917. A total of about 10,000 soldiers died, amongst them almost all of the 3rd Royal Bavarian Division. The blast was one of the biggest non-nuclear explosions of all times and was audible in Dublin and London.
  • John||

    There is still a large mine some where on the old Somme battlefield that never exploded. No one is sure where it is or if or when it will ever go off.

  • Swiss Servator, Original Gnome||

    Belgian and French EOD gets real world practice every year....inside the farm fields and old battlefields. Nothing like the freeze and thaw pushing up an old Krupp 28 cm shell...

  • John||

    The areas around the Somme and Paschendale basically farm skulls and EOD in addition to crops. They are oddly beautiful but strangely depressing places.

  • robc||

    How does that compare with the Battle of the Crater from the civil war?

  • Lord Humungus||

    Miners dug secret tunnels from the British trenches to Messines, and planted twenty-two colossal landmines in the ridge, under the Germans. Each mine got at least 25 tons of TNT; 600 tons of explosives were used altogether. One mine was discovered and exploded by German counter-miners in August 1916. They did not find the rest, though, and when Plumer was ready to go, he said, "Gentlemen, we may not make history tomorrow, but we shall certainly change the geography."

    http://xenohistorian.wordpress.....-flanders/

  • Capt. Rimmer||

    Wow!

  • John||

    Way cool.

    In that vain, here are pictures of old Imperial Russia taken with the same process.

    http://www.retronaut.com/2010/.....1909-1915/

  • SugarFree||

    They are a real pain in the ass to digitize. The light of a negative scanner is sometimes too dim to make the image show up. I had to use an old overhead projector and a digital camera on a stand to capture one of them.

  • Warty||

    The eleven American nations

    Or: a journalist whines that racist Neo-Confederates don't like gun control and writes a book about it.

  • John||

    He is so ignorant, he doesn't even get the map right. He includes places like Dallas and Oklahoma City and Memphis is "greater Appalachia" What kind of retard would think Memphis and Dallas are part of the same section of the country much less "greater Appalachia"?

  • Kid Xenocles||

    I skimmed some of the explanation last night from the NPR write-up and a lot of it was ethnic - Scots-Irish in this case.

  • Warty||

    Anybody who claims that Dallas and Columbus have the same culture has never been to both those places.

  • Kid Xenocles||

    Didn't say it was my explanation.

    I think anyone who attempts to draw a map like that will laughably fail. If boundaries don't form organically they will include or exclude inappropriately.

  • Warty||

    I mean, he's clearly right that there are different cultural traditions in America, but his attempt to draw a map to reflect that and to use it to explain why his side can't get everything he wants just strikes me as odd.

  • Erik Jay||

    The editing around these parts has gotten pretty dismal. Sorry to inform you that "reticent" is not a synonym for "hesitant." Mike Alissi: Who's handling HR, eh?

  • ||

    ▂ ▄ ▅ ▇ LIFETIME OPPORTUNITY ▇ ▅ ▄ ▂ ▁
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