Reason Morning Links: SOTU Tonight, New Government for Lebanon, Court Rules Against Emanuel


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  1. Obama to deliver State of the Union tonight.

    The Great Leader compels everyone to make sure neighbors are watching it…

    1. Proposed Texas law to make pit bull ownership a felony.

      1. Goddamn sometimes I hate living in Texas! We come up with some of the most banal and utter crap laws on the books.

        1. On the plus side you have Kinky Friedman & Utopia Animal Rescue Ranch –

      2. Funny enough, pit bull isn’t a breed and stupid bans usually regulate solely on appearance of the animal, which is incredibly arbitrary. Funny how a shelter here manages to take in what is probably 95% terrier breeds (pits) and the most troublesome dogs with respect to humans tend to come from the 5% non pit. A lot of the pits are other dog aggressive to some degree, but most of the time that is worked out of them once you get it through their thick melons you or other humans are in charge. Hell, my 5’1″ pixie wife, and many other small stature women, walk 40-60 pound rescued pits for hours for the shelter. The only thing they have to fear is getting licked or pulled to death. (and the occasional unnuetered mad humper)

        Hell, the city I’m in has one of the worst stray dog issues in the nation and most are some sort of terrier breed because of the popularity of pits in the ghetto where people don’t take care of their fucking property, lie their animals.

        There should be a ban on stupid fucking people making stupid fucking laws.

        1. Are you in NOLA? Because we have a huge problem with packs of feral dogs. We eradicated quite a few in the aftermath of the Army Corps of Engineer’s flooding of the city but they are making a comeback for the very reason you cite, ignorant owners abandoning fighting dogs.

        2. Pit Bull is indeed not a specific breed, it is a small group of breeds which just happen to share closely many physical and disposition features – and a firm hold on a hugely disproportionate share of dog bite trauma and fatalities statistic. I attended a trauma seminar where Donald Trunkey, MD, head trauma surgeon at UCSF presented the results of a large study they did on serious dog bite trauma and the breeds responsible. His graph looked like a roller coaster, with “Pit Bulls” all by themselves at the top, German Shepherds about 2/3 of the way down the very steep slope, and the also-rans down on the flats.

          CDC confirms this: “In aggregate, pit bulls, Rottweilers, and mixes thereof were involved in about 50% of the fatalities identified over the 20-year period covered by the study, and for 67% of the dog bite-related fatalities reported in the final two years studied (1997?1998), concluding, ‘It is extremely unlikely that they [pit bull-type dogs and Rottweilers] accounted for anywhere near 60% of dogs in the United States during that same period and, thus, there appears to be a breed-specific problem with fatalities.'”

          Your anecdotes are interesting but, with respect, irrelevant. “Pit Bull types” are in fact dangerous animals if one cares to allow himself to believe the legitimate studies of bad dog bites. I’ve never met a Pit Bull owner who wasn’t aghast at such revelations and who didn’t think that his Fido was or could be anything but the sweetest little critter. Pit Bulls are like congressmen, they’re demonstrably bad – except of course for “mine”.


            The PDF:

            This study is so full of holes starting with the first paragraph and the data sources.

            Compiled by the editor of ANIMAL PEOPLE from press accounts since 1982, this table covers only attacks by dogs of clearly identified breed type or ancestry, as designated by animal control officers or others with evident expertise, who have been kept as pets.

            The CDC study has the same issues, but deals with a smaller number of incidents and the issues are less significant and blatant.

            That’s the most recent and comprehensive numbers. While reading that focus on a two things:
            1)the word mixes (which is an absurdly large category with respect to the other categories)
            2)percent of population compared to the rest of the numbers

            The irony and blatant one-sided opinion in your statement,

            Your anecdotes are interesting but, with respect, irrelevant. “Pit Bull types” are in fact dangerous animals if one cares to allow himself to believe the legitimate studies of bad dog bites.

            is absolutely delightful.

            You try to respectfully discount any anecdote, which I agree isn’t the best source of data, and then turn around and say “Pit Bull types” are in fact dangerous animals…” Dangerous animals, you might as well call them assault weapons. That phrase is ambiguous and chocked full misinformation and keyed so as to invoke fear. In short, and with respect, try more reading what the numbers say and less reading into them what you want.

            1. Assumptions in studies and models, biting people in the ass since god knows when.

            2. Why you quoted the Animal People study to me eludes me. I’ve never read it before and I know nothing about it and it had nothing to do with my statement. But you did, indeed, knock it right down.

              The “blatant and one-sided opinion’ was not mine but that of Don Trunkey and his UCSF crew and that of the CDC. You can believe that they know how to conduct epidemiological studies and interpret the results or not. I don’t care. It is only what they do for a living. (Yes, I know that their papers didn’t say the words “dangerous animals.” Most readers of their results don’t need that spelled out for them. My bad.)

              Give Fido a pat for me. (G)

              1. It’s the most comprehensive study to date. The CDC study comes to almost the same conclusion and is decades old and uses a pretty narrow sample size.

                Just because it is the CDC does not mean they are not vulnerable to the same mistakes others make. All that is government study is not holy grail.

                They didn’t use dangerous animal because it’s an ambiguous term used to try and progress an agenda or opinion. Even the shoddiest of studies would avoid such terminology and the odds are pretty good that only someone with an agenda would use the term.

                The point is you’re cherry picking information out of a study that you appear to be incapable of vetting in any meaningful way. You are relying on the word of someone else, who appears to be using the data as some preface to the treatment of such injuries.

                Like I said, learn to read the numbers and the study instead of assuming that third hand reiteration of the information is the gospel and using bullshit terms like “dangerous animals.” Otherwise you look like an agenda sheep following along blindly.

                I don’t own a dog. I have two cats. I just can’t stand the bastardization of studies and data to further an agenda. Be it in the study itself or by someone farther down the road.

                1. I’m not even going to mention the property rights and government seizure and destruction of private property with respect to these laws. It should be obvious.

                2. I’m not even going to mention the obvious property right issues.

                  1. FUCKING SQUIRRELS!!

      3. Written by the PI lawyer who won a judgment after a kid got chewed up.

        No sponsors in the legislature. Yet.

        This will be interesting. First, to see if it gets sponsors. Second, to watch it die in committee.

        Never underestimate the ability of legislators to waste their time on stupid shit like this. But, the idea that hundreds of thousands of dogs would have to be killed on the day this gets signed by the governor should be enough to kill the bill.

        1. Similar passed in Denver CO.

        2. It’s bad enough that idiotic, showboating, go-nowhere bills that are actually filed get covered as “proposed Texas law bans (fill in the blank)”. Do we have to treat random BS written by random schmoes off the street as “proposed” laws?

          The homeless jenkem junkie down the street from my office has proposed banning flush toilets- better call the Huffington Post.

          1. That homeless fucker! Flush toilets are great. Especially the old school power flushers.

    2. New season of Archer starts Thursday on F/X.

  2. Former Lebanese Prime Minister Najib Mikati to lead the country’s new government.

    His will be featured in an upcoming episode of Dirty Jobs.

  3. Illinois appeals court says Rahm Emanuel is ineligible to be mayor of Chicago.

    Emanuel promises to keep the fight, which would include several newspaper-wrapped fishes delivered to the doorsteps of each of the appellate judges…

    1. Poor widdwe Rahmie. Sniff, sniff.

    2. You’re on a roll again this morning, OM!

    3. Ha, and one of the Democratic Illinois Supreme Court justices is married to a big-shot Chicago alderman who backs Chico for mayor. Chicago politics is so much fun when watched afar.

    4. Let me be perfectly clear: HA HA!

      1. Obama says Emanuel should be on the ballot. Emanuel sets his crosshairs on the IL Supreme Court.

        1. Obama should mind his own fucking business.

    5. Say, boss, y’wan’ I should bust some fuckin’ ap… apple… uh, judge kneecaps?

  4. NYT to quarantine itself again. This time they’re not just taking the editorial page, they’re taking the news.

    “The Times is considering charging about $20 per month for a digital bundle that includes access to the website, as well as the iPad app, according to a report in The Wall Street Journal. The paper will charge ‘less than half that for the web-only offering.’ Reading the paper using Amazon’s Kindle e-reader currently costs $20 per month.”

    I would pay $20/month to never see another word written by their Op-ed staff ever again.

    1. Douthat is ok. Sometimes.

        1. Freakonomics blog and ScienceTimes kick butt, though.

          1. Freakonomics blog is good, but it always leaves me unsatisfied. They really only post quips rather than actual articles or write-ups. I need to get a copy of the book though; I loved the chapter on sumo.

            1. The books are pretty good (I like “The Undercover Economist” by Tim Harford more as it pertains more to normal situations in interesting ways).

              If you want more a more in depth econ blog, I read Coordination Problem which is all Austrian. Zero Hedge can be a bit technical and market oriented, but ocasionally has some gems (lots of gold bugs).

  5. Who is Bradley Bammnin?

    1. Assange linked himself to Manning in public statements. Do those count? Then again, Assange made up leaking that whole AGW hockey stick hoax too.

  6. Nestle scientists using “giant stomach” to create more satiating food.

    Reality is funnier than fiction… I mean, what’s left to say??? You can’t make shit like this, folks!

    1. I can make HUGE shit. If you saw it you would wonder if it came from a human.

      1. Damn it sage! I knew it was you hanging around outside my apartment!!

        1. Seriously, it’s like a bear with 17 pounds of granola and 2 gallons of black coffee in him.

          1. Video of having to stand up from the toilet to get off of it and all the way out or it never happened.

            1. Lifted me right off the seat. You could have called it “Flipper.”

            2. Will this still image suffice? (Warning: NSF lunch.)

              1. We played there! They fucking loved us!

              2. >>Will this still image suffice?

                OK, look, who on earth was the guy who decided to add the last increment?!

      2. I had a roommate like that. Dude clogged the half-bath toilet with a shit the size of a man’s forearm. I think he could shit a baby.

        1. It’s not that hard.

    2. Nestle using a giant stomach? And here I thought Christie couldn’t give the GOP SOTU rebuttal because he wanted to focus on New Jerksey.

      I don’t trust a company that tries to develop a product that makes you want less of that product. Food can stay in the “planned obsolescence” category.

  7. Illinois appeals court says Rahm Emanuel is ineligible to be mayor of Chicago.

    As delighted as I am about this, it is tempered by the fact that it now means Carol Mosley Braun leads in the polls. I assume come aspect of the Daley machine will have to step in to keep her from destroying the city utterly.

    1. This morning I heard a commercial on Chicago radio, by the NJ governor inviting Illinois business to relocate to NJ. I laughed heartily.

      Then I realized how great it is that states are actually competing for business by touting lower taxes and less government.

      1. Wait, wait, wait. JERSEY has a better business climate than Illinois? Holy shit.

    2. Isn’t it amazing how, all of a sudden, it’s okay to promote a white man for public office over a black woman?

      1. Even more amazing, he is Jewish too!

    3. I assume come aspect of the Daley machine will have to step in to keep her from destroying the city utterly.

      If she did, how could we tell the difference?

      1. Even the graft wouldn’t work anymore.

  8. Obama nominates RIAA lawyer as solicitor general. What corporatism?

  9. Emily Yoffe at Slate: It’s Time To Go

    Nancy Pelosi
    Someone needs to tell Pelosi, 70, that defeat is not victory, and that when you lose a leadership position because of a tidal wave of voter dissatisfaction, it’s actually not a mandate that people want more of you.

    1. Old bitches don’t want to hear that stuff.

    2. Dear god keep her in Congress. Please! Otherwise I’m gonna’ have to hit that…

      1. Dude, aren’t you a world class businessman? I sense a potential new office opening in the Dominican Republic.

  10. Is anyone live blogging the SOTU? If so, I hope it isn’t vitriolic in nature 😉

    1. You need to see a mental health specialist. You know that, right?

      1. Really? My psychiatrist says I need a good fuck. Shit! I could have had saved the $ and taken advice from Dr Destrudo

        1. Most men run as fast as they can when they detect the crazy vibe you seem to emit, but let me introduce you to my friend steve smith…

          1. Dr Destrodo,
            you want me to have sex with a sasquatch? Or is that what you call your penis?
            What do you call this new therapy?




              1. I would say Steve Smith raped the funny out of you, but that would imply you were ever funny in the first place.


  11. Obama to deliver State of the Union tonight.

    I’ve heard it’s gotten 12 oscar nominations.

    1. “I’ve heard it’s gotten 12 oscar nominations.”

      The Nobel Peace Prize Committee is going to be checking it out; maybe they’ll double-down.

  12. Are all you people jobless? Need work?

    1. Got any spamming positions?

    2. Is this guy related to Steve Smith?

    3. I would like to have one of those government jobs… You know, so I can sell secrets!

      1. We have five openings for blog whore and several dozen for house narcissist. Easy work. Minimal computer skills. HS diploma or GED.

        1. Would you be willing to hire a blogwhore with less than a high school education?

  13. Straight from the fronlines in the war against crime: Score one more victory over crime! Two States to finally criminalize one of the most incidious forms of human activity that damages the very fabric, nay the very foundation, of our society!…..TE=DEFAULT

    1. “Insidious”… sorry.

    2. I think every state should follow Texas’ example of making it unconstitutional to legislate in even numbered years, and Florida’s example of only giving them 12 weeks to legislate in the odd numbered years.

    3. Seriously? If people don’t think this is incredible stupid and offensive, I’ll no longer have any hope for this country. It doesn’t deserve to survive. Bring on the zombie apocalypse.

    4. “I don’t envision the earphone police going out and arresting people,” Jeffress said. “I don’t see anybody being stopped to check what’s in their ears.”

      I’m sure he’s right this time, unlike the war on drugs, alcohol prohibition, smoking bans, seat belts laws, helmet laws, traffic laws, trans-fat, nutrition labeling, menu labeling, militarization of the police, etc, etc, etc…

    5. Pretty sure Colorado has laws against distracting skiing/snowboarding. Like, no headphones while skiing. Never enforced but if you smack somebody on the snow wearing the pones, you’ll be liable.

    6. Everyone should read We

      1. My dad used to read Oui, way too many hairy Eurobushes for my taste.

  14. Brit MPs accuse Climategate panel of whitewash.

    “MPs on the Science and Technology Committee have now concluded that both probes into the scandal had failed to ‘fully investigate’ claims that scientists had deleted embarrassing emails.”

    1. Whitewash!? Why are there no prominent black climate scientists!? How can we take their claims seriously when they are guilty of institutional racism?


      1. Because the majority of environmental movement is suburban and exurban Whites making it illegal to build affordable housing in their neighborhoods. Urban minorities don’t see much sense in sighing up for the movement, consequently, they don’t take environmental courses like climatology.

    2. That’s racist.

  15. Didn’t Julian Assange pretty much engineer things to be this way? IIRC, WikiLeaks was set up to ensure that Assange had no idea who his sources were.

  16. * Obama to deliver State of the Union tonight.

    I never would have known…

  17. Speaking of Illinois, CNBC had the Illinois State Treasurer (I think) on; he seems to think *not* bailing out state governments would be bad. He then started talking about what a great place Ilinois is, to live and work.

    I was waiting for one of the nodders to blurt out, “Dude, Illinois is a FUCKING TOILET.”

    As usual, they let me down.

    1. It’s not even worth crossing the river for the mob run strip clubs anymore.

  18. German dentist weaks skimpy dresses to calm patients…

    [Yes, you cynics: the dentist is a girl]…..-patients/

    While some dentists would tell nervous patients to man up during a gum-bleeding dental procedure, Dr. Marie Catherine Klarkowski of Germany takes a more creative approach to patient care.

    Klarkowski bought low-cut “dirndl” dresses with tight bodices for herself and her entire staff as a way to distract patients as she performs dental work on them, reported Sunday.


    1. Does she have any franchise plans?

    2. Now the only problem is ensuring that the dental hygenists are attractive.

      1. It is quite a problem. Something of a coin toss, IMO. YMMV.

        1. For Germany, that’s pretty high quality.

          1. I’d say that’s pretty good for anywhere, studman.

            1. I live in Tallahassee. We get about 5000 new 18-20 year old women every August. I admit my scale may not be the same as people who don’t live in a southern college town.

              1. Ah Tallahassee town, the only place I’ve ever been where ladies apply a full face of makeup before jogging in the AM. Many, many ears ago I worked at Mike’s Beer Barn… good times.

        2. First comment on the page: What is Robin Williams doing there 3rd from left as you look at the picture


          Seriously though, Mrs. Doubtfire was the only ugly one in the group. That’s certainly different than my dentist office though.

        3. That’s quality. I’ll be in my bunk.

        4. Get that bitch in the middle in a goddamn dress.

    3. I don’t think that would help me “relax,” depending on what she looks like. I mean, a decent-looking woman, in a tight, low-cut dress with nice cleavage, leaning over me while I’m lying on my back…

      Yeah, drill, baby, drill!!

  19. Douthat is ok. Sometimes.


    He wrote a thing about regulatory capture which I thought was pretty mild, if not self-evident. The commenters went apeshit; you would have thought he wanted to turn the government of the United States over to I G Farben.

  20. Not sure if it’s been mentioned on the site already, but there have been a lot of cops dying in the last few days (especially Florida).

    Texas and Florida lead in cop deaths in last few days
    Funeral for Miami-Dade officers

    I hate to say this, but I’m torn between smiling and saying “Payback’s a bitch” and actually feeling sorry for the officers and their families.

    1. Could only fit two links in the last post.

      Police fear a “war on cops”

      It’s from MSNBC, so it’s obviously an unbiased reaction to the recent cop deaths.

    2. I don’t understand the logic. Going after non-violent drug dealers requires a tactical team, but serving warrants on homicide or aggravated battery is just knock and announce with uniforms. Does anyone else wonder about this?

      1. Excellent point. I had thought the same thing, especially when I heard on the radio yesterday about the St. Petersburg shootings. They had a fugitive warrant, the owner of the house said the suspect was in the attic, and a lone officer climbs up there and gets nailed.

        On the other hand, 3am raids on the wrong house are perfectly acceptable.

      2. No federal funding or task force for the homicide perps. The drug raids all have to justify the federal money and joint task force costs so they pile on all the retarded pseudo soldier morons and equipment they can.

        But they aren’t experts…

        1. task force = multi-jurisdiction

          Since I’m sure someone will wage a war of semantics.

    3. The word “blowback” comes to mind…

    4. “It’s not a fluke,” said Richard Roberts, spokesman for the International Union of Police Associations. “There’s a perception among officers in the field that there’s a war on cops going on.”

      So would this be a good time to make a bunch of sudden jerky movements when I get pulled over?

      1. With the Florida deaths, the nation is on track in 2011 to match the 162 police officers killed in the line of duty in 2010, said Steve Groeninger, spokesman for the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund, the Washington, D.C.-based nonprofit that tracks police casualties. In January this year there have been 14 deaths, the same number as in January 2010, the fund posted on its web site.

        The 2010 toll ended a two-year drop in fatalities and spiked 43 percent over the 117 killed in 2009, Groeninger said.

        They are really quick to get the “War on ______” language out there, aren’t they? We lose more troops in the Middle East than we lose cops in this country. I’d be willing to bet there are just as many wrongful deaths at the hands of cops. Does that mean police have a “War on Citizens”?

        1. There was an article about this in Reason or H&R. 117 in 2009 was WAY below average. I think the average in the 1970s was over 200, and the 30 year average about 175.

          Also, how the hell is a bunch of random single fatalities a war? The Detroit deal (zero cop fatalities) had all the hallmarks of suicide-by-cop. My sympathy falls off fast when the union guys run to the press to talk about how they’re under siege.

      2. There’s a perception among officers in the field that there’s a war on cops going on.

        I think its an open question who started the war between cops and citizens, myself.

    5. Payback’s a bitch

      Good cops deserve to die because of bad cops? Or are they all bad, by virtue of being cops? If they’re all bad because they’re cops, why feel bad about it? Their kids will get over it, eventually. There have always been orphans. Fuck ’em.

      1. Well I do have family members who are cops so that is why I am stopping short of full callousness. But it really is hard for me to drum up sympathy for these “slain officers” (news reporters’ words; not mine) much as it was close to impossible about feeling sympathetic for Gabrielle Giffords–who didn’t even die!!!–when so many other people are killed on a daily basis and no outcry is made whatsoever.

    6. I feel bad for the cops and their families. If anyone deserves to take the fall for bad policy vis a vis drugs, “morality”, etc, it’s the politicians who wrote the laws, not the cops enforcing them.

      Yeah, I said it.

      1. I concur, and throw in the voters who elect tough on crime politicians.

        1. I shouted out, “Who killed the Kennedys?”

        2. Well, in the absence of any connection or political basis, and due to the fact that the perpetrators are mostly ordinary criminals rather than wronged citizens, it doesn’t seem like there’s any “payback” other than karmic. So you can stick with feeling sorry for the human tragedy.

      2. I can’t endorse violence against police qua police because isn’t helpful: it doesn’t lead to a peaceful end state, just more violence.

        But your conclusion is too strongly stated by half.

        “Just following orders” is not a get out of moral responsibility free card, on top of which the police professional organizations campaign hard for “tough on crime” candidates so it looks like they are hoping for those orders. Further, official corruption and the thing blue line are not political policy, they are simple the acts of the police organizations on the ground.

        The solution must come from the citizenry. Ending or at least scaling back the war on drug would be a good first step. I might allow enough breathing room for the courts to reconsider some bad Fourth Amendment and Commerce Clause jurisprudence.

  21. As delighted as I am about this, it is tempered by the fact that it now means Carol Mosley Braun leads in the polls.

    Any color Mayor you want; as long as it’s…..


  22. Curious (and/or gruesome) fact: Rahm “Dead Fish” Emanuel used to live in a palatial condo that was most of this corner Victorian mansion at 1279 21st Street NW, right across the street from Chandra Levy’s, murdered intern and lover of California Democrat Gary Condit, apartment at The Newport apartments, 1260 21st Street NW…..0335659991

    1. But Rahm’s a man of the people!

  23. Obama to deliver disembowel State of the Union tonight


  24. “There’s a perception among officers in the field that there’s a war on cops going on.”

    How odd; there seems to be a growing consensus among the civilian population that the opposite is occurring.

  25. “”Nestle scientists using “giant stomach” “”

    Michael Moore got a new job?

  26. Alberta to cancel over 141,000 speeding tickets from photo radar, including 102,000 that will have to be refunded.

  27. I just saw on Fox news- they think cops are being targeted. Apparently people no longer “fear” the police according to a phone interview with some cop commenter.

    Also, car salesman fired for insubordination:…..91697.html

  28. Threadjack Alert

    Jesse Ventura dosen’t like being patted down at TSA anymore than I do.…..ainst-tsa/

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