Last updated:
3:36 PM, 4 September 2015



Jim Miller on Politics

  Email:
jimxc1 at gmail.com



What's he reading? Francis Parkman.

News Compilers
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References:

Adherents
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How Stuff Works
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My Group Blog:
Sound Politics

Northwest:


The American Empire
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Chief Brief
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Croker Sack
"DANEgerus"
Economic Freedom
Federal Way Conservative
Freedom Foundation
Hairy Thoughts
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Orcinus
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<pudge/*>
Northwest Progressive Institute
*Progressive Majority
Matt Rosenberg
Seattle Blogger
Seattle Bubble
Washington Policy Center
West Sound Politics
Zero Base Thinking


Other US:


Ace of Spades HQ
Alien Corn
Ann Althouse
American Thinker
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Armies of Liberation
Art Contrarian
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Balloon Juice
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La Shawn Barber
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Big Government
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Broadband Politics
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Election Law
John Ellis
Engage
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Gary Farber
Fausta
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Flares into Darkness
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Keith Hennessey
Hugh Hewitt
Siflay Hraka
Instapundit
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Joanne Jacobs
Jeff Jarvis
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Brothers Judd
JustOneMinute
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Kesher Talk
Le-gal In-sur-rec-tion
Little Green Footballs
Megan McArdle
Michelle Malkin
Greg Mankiw
Marginal Revolution
Mazurland
Minding the Campus
The ModerateVoice
*The Monkey Cage Mudville Gazette
"neo-neocon"
Betsy Newmark
Newsbusters
No Watermelons Allowed
Ambra Nykola
*The Optimistic Conservative
The Ornery American
OxBlog
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Daniel Pipes
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Political Arithmetik
Political Calculations
Pollster.com
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Radio Equalizer
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Screw Loose Change
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Joshua Sharf
Rand Simberg
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Winds of Change
Meryl Yourish
zombietime


Canadians:


BlazingCatFur
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Five Feet of Fury
Kate McMillan
Damian Penny
Bruce Rolston


Latin America:


Babalú
Caracas Chronicles
The Devil's Excrement
Venezuela News and Views


Overseas:


"Franco Aleman"
Bruce Bawer
Biased BBC
Tim Blair
*Andrew Bolt
Peter Briffa
Brussels Journal
*Bunyipitude
Butterflies and Wheels
Crooked Timber
Davids Medienkritik
Egyptian Sand Monkey
EU Referendum
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Guido Fawkes
Harry's Place
Mick Hartley
Oliver Kamm
JG, Caesarea
*Le Monde Watch
¡No-Pasarán!
Fredrik Norman
Melanie Phillips
John Ray
samizdata
Shark Blog
Natalie Solent
Somtow's World
Bjørn Stærk
Laban Tall
*David Thompson
Michael Yon
This is Zimbabwe

Science Blogs:
The Blackboard
Cliff Mass Weather
Climate Audit
Climate Depot
Climate Science
*Judith Curry
Future Pundit
Gene Expression
The Loom
In The Pipeline
Roger Pielke Jr.
Real Climate
A Voyage To Arcturus
Watts Up With That?

Media Blogs:
Andrew Malcolm
Dori Monson
David Postman
Rhetorical Ammo
Tierney Lab
*White House Dossier

R-Rated:
Horse's A**
Huffington Post

*new



How Does Unemployment In The United States Compare To That In Europe?  You almost certainly have heard a headline or two about the latest monthly jobs report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Job gains were lower than expected last month, but the unemployment rate was fell to 5.1 percent.

That's not great news, but it's much better than the job news in the European Union.

Yesterday, while searching for something else, I came across the Eurostat site, which, I assume, is the official statistics site for the EU.

Here's what they say about their unemployment.
The euro area seasonally-adjusted unemployment rate was 10.9 % in July 2015, down from 11.1 % in June 2015, and from 11.6 % in July 2014.  The EU-28 unemployment rate was 9.5 % in July 2015, down from 9.6 % in June 2015 and from 10.2 % in July 2014.

Among the Member States, the lowest unemployment rates in July 2015 were recorded in Germany (4.7 %), the Czech Republic and Malta (both 5.1 %), and the highest in Greece (25.0 % in May 2015) and Spain (22.2 %).
(They give two sets, because they want to differentiate between all the nations in the EU (EU-28), and the subset that uses the euro.)

Since countries estimate unemployment rates differently (and the European Union includes some countries that produce statistics that are not entirely trustworthy), we shouldn't say the unemployment rate is almost twice as high in the European Union as it is in the United States.  But we can say that the unemployment rate in the European Union is roughly twice as high as the rate in the United States.

The second graph makes that comparison directly (and adds Japan).  You'll notice that the job losses were greater here, but that our recovery is much more impressive or, perhaps I should say, less depressing.

(If you share even a little of my interest in national statistics, you'll be tempted to browse the Eurostat site, looking for valuable nuggets of information.  And I am almost certain that you will find some.  The site does often make comparisons to the United States, by the way.)
- 3:36 PM, 4 September 2015   [link]


"How Hugo Chavez Trashed Latin America's Richest Economy"   The damage Chávez did to the Venezuelan economy is impressive for its scale, and its perversity; he and his followers have almost destroyed the economy of that oil-rich nation, with no benefits, even to their own movement.

Justin Fox describes their largest mistake.
Venezuela isn't running out of oil.  Its proven reserves have skyrocketed since 2000 as geologists have learned more about the heavy crude of the Orinoco Belt.  But getting at that oil will take a lot of resources and expertise, both things that Venezuela’s state-owned oil company, Petroleos de Venezuela (PDVSA, best known in the U.S. for its Citgo subsidiary), has been lacking in since Chavez initiated a sort of hostile takeover starting in the early 2000s.  First he kicked out 18,000 workers and executives, 40 percent of the company’s workforce, after a strike.   Then he started demanding control of PDVSA’s joint ventures with foreign oil companies.   One could interpret this in the most Chavez-friendly way possible -- he was aiming for a more just allocation of his nation’s resources -- and still conclude that he made it harder for PDVSA to deliver the necessary tax revenue.
Chávez didn't kill the goose that laid the golden eggs, but he so mistreated it that it laid fewer eggs than before.

Why?

I am no expert on Venezuela, but it appears to be a matter of power; PDVSA and its union were still independent of the regime, and Chávez found that intolerable.
- 8:48 AM, 4 September 2015   [link]


Paul Krugman, Ace Geographer:  In today's column, the Nobel-Prize-winning economist writes:
While the dollar nations have all done well, however, they occupy very different positions in the world economy.  In part, I mean that quite literally: Australia and New Zealand are a long way from everyplace, while Canada, most of whose people live near its southern border, is effectively closer to the United States than it is to itself.  And the U.S. is, of course, an economic giant around whose gravity smaller economies revolve.
(Emphasis added.)

New Zealand is isolated if you don't count small islands, but Australia is quite close to the second largest island in the world (after Greenland), New Guinea.   The western half of New Guinea is now part of Indonesia.  Indonesia has a population of about 255 million, making it the fourth largest nation in the world, and the largest Muslim nation.

How close is Australia to Indonesia?  This map shows us, approximately, if we remember that Indonesia begins at the western edge of the map.

Torres Strait

The Torres Strait is 93 miles wide at its narrowest.  However, since Australia owns those small islands in the strait, we can see that Australia and Indonesia are about 100 miles apart.

Which is not a "long way", when we are talking about distances between nations.

Way back in 2003, I joked that you could explain Paul Krugman's columns if you assumed they were written by someone else, someone who was "trying to discredit Krugman".

Every year since then, I have seen evidence that makes me wonder whether there might be some truth in my joke.

(Australia's closeness to Indonesia is why, for many years, Australia had its own smaller version of Europe's migrant crisis, with boat loads of migrants regularly arriving in Australia from Indonesia — and hundreds of them dying in the attempts.  That migration has largely been stopped by Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott.
- 7:36 AM, 4 September 2015   [link]


This Daily News editorial may not be the very best argument against the Iran "deal" that I've seen, but I can't resist the headline: "Iran devils get their deal ".

And having enjoyed the headline, I'll add that the editorial isn't bad.  I particularly like its direct replies to some of President Obama's claims about the "deal".
- 4:34 PM, 3 September 2015   [link]


If You Want An Overall Picture Of Europe's Migration Crisis, this BBC article, "Why is EU struggling with migrants and asylum?", is probably a good place to start.  (It even has graphs.)

It begins with a few of the essential numbers:
More than 350,000 migrants were detected at the EU's borders in January-August 2015, compared with 280,000 detections for the whole of 2014.

That 350,000 figure - an estimate from the International Organization for Migration (IOM) - does not include the many who got in undetected.

The conflicts raging in Syria and Afghanistan, and abuses in Eritrea, are major drivers of the migration.

More than 2,600 migrants have drowned in the Mediterranean this year, trying to reach Greece or Italy, the IOM says.
And there is much more, including maps of migration routes.

When you read it, you should keep in mind that the European Union distinguishes between migrants (often called "economic migrants"), people who are looking for better jobs, and "refugees", people who are fleeing persecution.  People in the latter group — once their refugee status is verified — have legal rights that ordinary migrants do not.  The article explains those rights briefly, and then links to an official document for more.

From what I can tell, the proportion of genuine refugees has increased in recent years.

When you read it, you will notice that it is an example of what I wrote about in the post below; the BBC does not mention who the migrants are fleeing from, and does not mention President Obama, or his policies, at all.  (There is, as I write, a link to a video showing Obama buying cinnamon buns in Alaska.)

Like many of the best pieces from our "mainstream" journalists, it will be most informative if you read it critically, keeping in mind their biases.

(How accurate are those numbers?  Not very, I would guess, given the difficulty of counting all these kinds of illegal behavior.  I would not be terribly surprised if any of them were off by 25 percent, either way.  Note that the BBC gives the numbers, and their source, without endorsing them.)
- 1:24 PM, 3 September 2015   [link]


Two Things They Left Out Of Those Migrant Stories:  When I was watching those four TV news programs last night, I saw extensive coverage of the flood of migrants from the Middle East and Africa, who, having reached Europe, were now trying to get to Germany, or Sweden.

All of them showed me scenes of confusion and disorder; all of them showed me sad cases, including pictures of the little boy who had drowned, and whose body was being carried away by a Turkish policeman.  (If you watch the news at all, you probably saw that picture, too.)

But there were two things none of them mentioned.  First, most of those migrants were fleeing from civil wars started by radical Islamists.  Second, this migration has vastly increased in size since Barack Obama became president, and withdrew American forces from the Middle East.

The first, by now, we should all be familiar with.  Our "mainstream" journalists, on the whole a devoutly secular bunch, find it hard to understand people with religious motives.  But the journalists routinely cater to groups they see as mistreated minorities, Muslims in this case, by not mentioning the group, when members of that group commit crimes.

And, if that requires the journalists to leave out the who part of a big story, they'll do it.

The second, for most journalists, began in 2007.  Bad things are always happening to Obama, as James Taranto often jokes, but they are never the result of his policies.  If order breaks down after Obama withdraws those troops — against the advice of most American commanders — that does not lead our "mainstream" journalists to ask whether it might have broken down in part because of that withdrawal.

And so we see, or hear, or read, all these stories about the migrants, without any of our journalists telling us who they are fleeing from, and why they are fleeing now.

(For the record:  Of course I do not put all the blame on Obama for these migrations, or even most of it,  He is like a police commissioner who withdrew police from a dangerous neighborhood,  The principal blame for the disorder that would follow must be given to the criminals, not the commissioner.  But that doesn't mean we should ignore the commissioner's enabling of the violence, even if it was unintentional.)
- 10:52 AM, 3 September 2015   [link]


United States Version Of The Ministry Joke?  There's an old joke that's been bothering me, recently.  It comes in many versions; here's one from the Lukes/Galnoor collection:
In the 1960s, the Czech government announces its intention to establish a Ministry of the Navy.   The Soviet government responds with astonishment:
'But you have no sea coast.'
'Why is that a problem?' ask the Czechs.  'You have a Ministry of Justice and the Bulgarians have a Ministry of Culture.' (p. 107)
The joke bothers me because, since Barack Obama became president and appointed first Eric Holder and then Loretta Lynch to be attorney general, it has been too easy to see how to adapt that joke so that the United States is in the punch line.

Our Department of Justice is now an immense organization, including many bureaucracies.  I don't mean to imply that all, or even most, of it have become rotten under Obama.  But some parts of it have, which is why an American version of that joke seems more and more appropriate.

(Here's another version, one that reminds us that Israel was not always as prosperous as it is, now.
Ben Gurion decides to appoint Sharet as Minister of the Israeli Commonwealth.
'But we have no colonies,' protests Sharet.
'So what?' replies Ben Gurion,  'We have a Ministry of Finance.'
That joke, with minor changes would work well in Illinois, right now.

I was surprised, when I glanced at the Wikipedia article, to learn how long the United States had a part time attorney general, with no department under him, at all.)
- 6:20 AM, 3 September 2015   [link]


Do You Know What Today Is?  If not, it's not entirely your fault because President Obama didn't attend even a small ceremony, and our news organizations ignored it, almost* entirely.

But we shouldn't ignore it , because today is the 70th anniversary of the Japanese surrender in World War II, the day the United States officially marks as VJ Day.

Japanese Surrender, 2 September 1945

Here's a description of what you are seeing there:
Japanese Foreign Minister Mamoru Shigemitsu signs the Instrument of Surrender on behalf of the Japanese Government, on board USS Missouri (BB-63), 2 September 1945.  Lieutenant General Richard K. Sutherland, U.S. Army, watches from the opposite side of the table.  Foreign Ministry representative Toshikazu Kase is assisting Mr. Shigemitsu.
We ought to be proud enough of our victories to celebrate them, at least as well as the British did, 18 days ago.

(I said "almost", because I did see one mention of the day, a brief CBS evening news piece on a small ceremony in Washington, D. C., with Bob Dole and a few other World War II veterans.  Seeing just that one wasn't for lack of trying; I read three newspapers today, and watched almost all of four half-hour news programs this evening, BBC America, ABC, NBC, and CBS.)
- 7:32 PM, 2 September 2015   [link]


Worth Reading:  Two Rather Different Opinion Pieces In Today's Wall Street Journal:  First, Douglas Feith explores the odd way we ignore crimes — if they are committed over the Internet.
One of the best lines of the U.S. presidential race so far comes from Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker. “It’s sad to think right now,” he joked in the first round of Republican presidential debates, “but probably the Russian and Chinese governments know more about Hillary Clinton’s email server than do the members of the United States Congress.”

A cheeky zinger with a serious point: It would be alarming if, as U.S. intelligence veterans worry, Chinese, Russian and other hackers were able to steal U.S. secrets through Mrs. Clinton’s private email server.

Yet the cybertheft would also be perversely appropriate.  Because for all their differences, Mrs. Clinton’s email schemes and the Chinese and Russian cyber campaigns share a certain symmetry:  They all rely on the fact that in cyberspace, it’s easier to misbehave and, if caught, easier to brazen it out.
And easier, for all too many of us, to see such crimes as misdemeanors, at most.

But, if we translate them from their electronic form to their physical equivalents, we can almost all see how serious Hillary Clinton's reckless behavior was, and how extensive and serious the cyber spying and theft by Russia and China are.

For the first, we can think of Clinton hiding secret government documents in her own ordinary locked file cabinet, a cabinet that hundreds of people must have known about.

For the second, imagine that the Russians and Chinese had managed to infiltrate hundreds of spies, armed with Minox cameras, into our government and corporate offices.

You should read the whole column.


Second, William A. Galston summarizes some of what political scientists have learned about presidential races, and applies them to 2016.

Here's a sample:
One long-standing trend favors the Republicans. Emory University political scientist Alan Abramowitz has shown that candidates vying to succeed incumbent two-term presidents of their own party face an uphill climb—all else being equal, a penalty of between four and five percentage points relative to the incumbent’s second-term share of the vote.

Mr. Abramowitz calls this the “time for a change” factor, and related research has helped explain why it is so powerful.  Republican presidents tend to pursue agendas that are more conservative than the electorate as a whole; Democrats, more liberal.  This not only arouses the antipathy of the out-party’s base but also troubles the less committed and more persuadable portion of the electorate.
(I don't know whether there are similar "time for a change" factors in competitive legislative races.  I wouldn't be surprised if there were, but would expect them to be somewhat weaker, since legislators are less visible.)

There's much more, and I agree with almost all of it, though I don't think that very many African-Americans have been angered by changes in voting laws, and I don't think any should be.

(Feith's column reminds me of a coincidence I can't stop wondering about:  Edward Snowden's flight came at a perfect time for the Chinese government, just as many governments, and even some "mainstream" journalists, were becoming alarmed by the massive Chinese cyber thefts.   Snowden's flight distracted almost everyone from those thefts, and we have never really gotten back to giving them the attention they deserve.

William Galston and I have been voting for different presidential candidates for decades now, but I have found him to be an honest, and often, interesting liberal, one I sometimes learn from.  I suspect some on the left dislike him for much the same reasons I like him.)
- 2:40 PM, 2 September 2015   [link]


Bigger, Better, And Brighter:  In fact, too bright until I adjusted the monitor down from the 100 percent brightness it had been set to at the factory.

That's my four word summary of my one-day experience with the new monitor.

The controls are a little better; they are in front, instead of on the side, and in metal instead of disguised in the same black as the case.  And a little worse; Viewsonic put two on each side of the power button, instead of separating them from it.

(People who have been playing with computers as long, or longer, than I have will appreciate this point:  To install the new monitor, I shut my system down, unplugged the power cord and the DVI connector, and then plugged in the new monitor — which worked fine in both Ubuntu and Windows.  It took a long time for the hardware and software people to achieve "plug and play", but now we are surprised when we don't have it, or even when we have to do something as simple as running an install program for a new device.)
- 1:04 PM, 2 September 2015   [link]


If You Are Tired Of "Seize The Day", you'll like yesterday's New Yorker cartoon.
- 6:06 AM, 2 September 2015   [link]


An Astronaut Took Legos Into Space:  Can we guess which country he comes from?   Sure we can.

Though I was mildly surprised to learn that he is the first astronaut from that country.

(This comes just a few months after Samantha Cristoforetti took one of her country's best-known products up to the International Space Station.   For fun, you might try to guess which country will be the next to use this form of advertising.)
- 5:57 AM, 2 September 2015   [link]


Here's A Different Birthright Citizenship Case:  For one thing, it's Canadian.
The sons of two Russian “deep cover” spies are fighting to keep the Canadian citizenship they acquired while their parents were living in Toronto under assumed identities and secretly working for Russian intelligence.

Alexander and Timothy Vavilov, 21 and 25, are the children of Elena Vavilova and Andrey Bezrukov, Russian operatives who were sent to Canada to develop “legends” that would mask their spying activities in the United States.
. . .
The brothers also returned to Russia at the time but are now claiming they are Canadians, and they have taken the government to court to be recognized as such, arguing that since they were born in Toronto they have a right to citizenship.
But, as you can see, that isn't the most interesting thing about the case.

Knowing nothing about the specifics of Canadian law, or their courts, I won't make a prediction on the outcome, though I think they should lose.

Incidentally, there were similar "deep cover" families here in the United States, and, if i recall correctly, some of them did have American-born children.

By way of Mr. Fur.

(Canada's citizenship laws appear to be broadly similar to ours, and, like ours, sometimes produce curious results.
In general, everyone born in Canada from 1947 or later acquires Canadian citizenship at birth.   In one 2008 case, a girl born to a Ugandan mother aboard a Northwest Airlines flight from Amsterdam to Boston was deemed a Canadian citizen for customs' purposes because she was born over Canada's airspace.[7]

The only exceptions concern children born to diplomats, where additional requirements apply.
In general, nations in the Americas have birthright citizenship, or, if you want to say it in Latin, jus soli; in general, nations elsewhere don't.)
- 12:13 PM, 1 September 2015   [link]


Iran President Rouhani Doesn't Want Iran To Vote On The "Deal"?   That's what the Associated Press says.
TEHRAN, Iran (AP) -- President Hassan Rouhani said Saturday he opposes a parliamentary vote on the landmark nuclear deal reached with world powers because terms of the agreement would turn into legal obligations if passed by lawmakers.

Rouhani told a news conference that the deal was a political understanding reached with the five permanent members of the U.N. Security Council and Germany, not a pact requiring parliamentary approval.  The deal also says Iran would implement the terms voluntarily, he said.
If — and this is a big if — Rouhani is telling the truth, he wants Iran not to be bound by the "deal", even though they are getting very large economic benefits from it.  He thinks we should pay Iran now, but that we shouldn't even receive formal promises, in return.

But there are other possibilities, which is why I began that paragraph with "If".  I'll be looking for speculation on this from specialists on Iran.  As well, of course, as watching to see whether the Iranian parliament does vote on the "deal".

One thing is certain, however:  Rouhani must have great contempt for President Obama and Secretary Kerry, because he is telling them that the agreement they worked so hard for isn't really an agreement at all.

Will this statement make either Kerry or Obama call for the re-opening of negotiations, or even "clarification" from the Iranian government?  Probably not.

By way of Ed Morrissey.

(Here's the usual Wikipedia biography, with more than the usual caveats.  Interestingly, he has a PH. D. in Constitutional Law from a Scottish university.)
- 9:41 AM, 1 September 2015   [link]


Power Is Still Out from the Saturday storm in thousands of homes in this area.
More than 62,000 customers remain without power after Saturday's potent windstorm, and it could be two more days before electrical service is restored to all areas, officials said.

Outages on Monday morning stretch from Whatcom County down to Olympia.

Puget Sound Energy says it still has 34,000 homes and businesses still affected. Snohomish PUD is down to 25,000 customers without power.  And Seattle City Light is working to get about 3,700 back on the grid.
(I fixed an obvious typo.)

KOMO is just including the metropolitan areas in Washington state.  The storm hit southern British Columbia hard too, and stretched south to at least Portland.
- 4:13 AM, 31 August 2015   [link]


Stereo Systems, Monitors, Mice, And Keyboards:  I am about to become an OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) again, about to assemble a new personal computer.

And in making my choices for parts I find that I am following a plan analogous to the advice I was given, decades ago, on assembling a stereo system.  Back in that Pre-Cambrian era, young men usually bought something to play music on after they had been working for some months at their first full-time job.

(If you are younger than I am, you may find that hard to believe, but it's true.  We did have inexpensive AM radios, but usually no more than that.)

When I started thinking about assembling the components for a stereo system — cartridge, turntable, pre-amplifier, amplifier, tuner, speakers, and, possibly, a tape deck — I sought advice from knowledgeable friends.  What they told me was that I should spend about half of my budget on the two ends of the system, the cartridge and turntable, and the speakers, that, however much I might be fascinated by whizzy electronic gadgets, I would get the best sound if I spent most on where the tiny bumps in the record grooves got translated into an electrical signal, and where the electrical signal was turned into sound waves.

It was good advice, and the speakers I chose way back then lasted me for decades.

For a personal computer system, the analogous parts are the keyboard and mouse, and the monitor.  As it happens, I have an ancient IBM Model M keyboard, which works fine, though someone, me I suppose, should clean it some time.  Similarly, right now I am using a Microsoft wheel mouse, which also works fine.  (I've had good luck with IBM and Logitech mice, too.)

The monitor I am using now, a Viewsonic, also works well, though its resolution (1680 x 1050) is not up to the 1080p standard.  And so I have ordered a new monitor, which will be the most expensive piece of my new system, costing more, probably, than the CPU and the motherboard, combined.

Which new monitor?   This one.   Which I chose because it will fit on my desk without rearranging everything, and because of the high quality of Viewsonic monitors, especially their top-of-the line monitors.  I should add that the one I have now has really annoying minimalist controls, but you are likely to have to use them only once or twice, so that isn't a big objection.

And I'll probably go to a two-monitor set up, so the old monitor won't be wasted.

(It is still possible to buy those Model M keyboards, either used, or new from Unicomp.   If color coordination were important to me, I'd get a black one to replace my old beige one.   The prices on them will show you how much people like me have come to value them.)
- 3:36 PM, 31 August 2015   [link]


Paul Krugman Can Be A Great Joke Teller:  As he reminded us in today's column.

There are a number of good jokes in the column; here are my two favorites:
I know, now I'm supposed to be evenhanded and point out equivalent figures on the Democratic side.  But there really aren't any; in modern America, cults of personality built around undeserving politicians seem to be a Republican thing.
. . .
And Hillary Clinton is the subject of a sort of anti-cult of personality, whose most ordinary actions are portrayed as nefarious.  (No, the email thing doesn't rise to he level of a "scandal".)
Those familiar with the former Enron consultant's record may protest that Krugman doesn't intend those as jokes, probably doesn't even realize how many people will find them absurd.

That's true, but unintentional jokes can be just as funny as intentional jokes, and so we should give Krugman credit for jokes that would crack up some audiences, even though he may not realize why they are laughing.

To be fair, Krugman does seem to realize that some — in the age of Obama — will think the first one is funny, but he quickly dismisses the idea.

(Fun fact:  Krugman was also a member of the Reagan administration, as well as an Enron consultant.  I don't know whether that is where he picked up his irrational hatred of Republicans.

The first and best public editor at the Times, Daniel Okrent, identified Krugman's fundamental problem as a columnist:  Krugman has "the disturbing habit of shaping, slicing and selectively citing numbers in a fashion that pleases his acolytes but leaves him open to substantive assaults".  In a word, Krugman is often dishonest — which doesn't seem to bother many people on the left.)
- 6:41 AM, 31 August 2015   [link]


Today's New Yorker Cartoon made me laugh out loud.

(That happens less often than you might think, for someone who loves jokes as much as I do.   I often smile at a joke, and then immediately begin studying it to see why it's funny, and whether I can use it.)
- 5:55 AM, 31 August 2015   [link]


Archives

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Coming Soon
  • Plan 17 Conservatives
  • FDR and Waterboarding
  • How Long Do Wars Last?
  • Carbon, Carbon Dioxide, and Crescent Wrenches
  • De-Lawyering and Attorney General McKenna


Coming Eventually
  • JFK and Wiretaps
  • Green Republicans
  • The Rise and Fall and Rise of Black Voting
  • Abortion, Cleft Palates, and Europe
  • Kweisi Mfume's Children
  • Public Opinion During Other US Wars
  • Dual Loyalties
  • The Power Index
  • Baby Dancing
  • Jocks, but no Nerds
  • The Four Caliphs




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