MadCity Blogs

Wed, 12/31/1969 - 7:00pm

The evening drive.

Althouse - 3 hours 14 min ago
Categories: MadCity Blogs

Goodbye to Jack Bruce.

Althouse - 3 hours 31 min ago
The Cream bassist has died, at the age of 71.

Here's an hour of him showing you how to play the bass:

Categories: MadCity Blogs

Reminder: Walker was George "I Really Caused WI's 135K Job Loss" Bush's Campaign Co-Chair

Uppity Wisconsin - 7 hours 2 min ago

The most absurd aspect of this campaign is Governor Scott Walker's most consistent attack:  That Mary Burke was affiliated with Governor Doyle, who lost 135K jobs during his last term in office-- conveniently overlooking that Burke wasn't working for Doyle during the time of the massive job loss, that Doyle gained over 100,000 jobs before that job loss occurred, or that the massive job loss was part of The Great Recession that hurt all states and occured because President George Bush drove the economy into the ditch!

That would be the same George Bush that Scott Walker served as Wisconsin Campaign Co-Chair and the same George Bush that affectionately referred to Walker as "Scott Dubya" and "my cousin" at joint public appearances.


Categories: MadCity Blogs

Did Chris Christie react to the charge that he was using his power as chair of the Republican Governors Association to undercut Scott Walker's reelection bid?

Althouse - 8 hours 26 min ago
"The RGA, chaired by Gov. Christie (R-N.J.), has been under pressure in recent days to do more to help Walker, a tea party favorite who rocketed to political stardom after he curbed bargaining rights for most public workers in his state. The Weekly Standard reported Thursday that there were brewing suspicions on the right that Christie, as RGA chairman, has been “undercutting” Walker, his potential rival for the 2016 Republican presidential nomination."

That's from a Washington Post article noting that the Republican Governors Association has just put another $1 million into ads for Scott Walker's reelection. The headline of the article puts the emphasis on Walker's state of mind — "RGA puts additional $1 million into Wisconsin ad buys as Walker frets" — but I think Christie's is the more interesting mind about which to speculate.

Walker is trying to get reelected and the polls show a close race. That's a mundane objective reality. The subjective matter of how that feels to him — whether he "frets" — is dumb in the same way that it's dumb for reporters to ask, say, a person whose house is burning down "How do you feel?" The answer is already known: How do you think I feel? There's nothing about the subjective aspect of the story that isn't inherent in the objective aspect of the story.

But what's going on in The Mind of Chris Christie? That's where the subjective part of the story is complex and speculation-ripe.

Here's the above-referenced Weekly Standard article: "Does Chris Christie Have Scott Walker's Back?"
"The Center for Public Integrity reported Thursday that Walker and his backers spent nearly $6.1 million on ads through Monday, while Burke and her supporters ran nearly $6.6 million," the AP reported on Thursday. On Sunday, Walker told the Washington Post's Robert Costa: "We are always looking for more help. Our main help has to be the RGA." But according to the Center for Public Integrity, the Republican Governors Association has spent $5.9 million on TV ads in Michigan, where Governor Rick Snyder is up for reelection, and just $801,000 on TV ads in Wisconsin.

Why would the RGA spend more on Rick Snyder than Scott Walker?...ADDED: Writing this post made me want to look the word "fret" up in the OED. The original meaning is to eat, to devour, referring to the behavior of nonhuman animals. It still has that meaning in the sense of a small animal — like a worm or a moth — consuming or wearing away something by gnawing at it. The figurative usage is very old, the passions and various irritants consume or wear away at a person's mind. Nathaniel Hawthorne wrote: "So many curiosities drive one crazy, and fret one's heart to death." The intransitive use — "To distress oneself with constant thoughts of regret or discontent; to vex oneself, chafe, worry" — is also very old, going back to 1551, first in a translation of Thomas More's "Utopia": " fret so fumed & chafed at it."

I like the verb "fret," and use it a lot, probably mostly to make a person seem fussy and overly inward. But searching this blog to find how I've used "fret," I see the first thing that comes up is a fond tribute to an old Kinks song: "Don't You Fret." And there's a reference to the famous line from "MacBeth": "Life's but a walking shadow, a poor player/That struts and frets his hour upon the stage/And then is heard no more: it is a tale/Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury/Signifying nothing." And, remember, MacBeth was already king when he said that. Chris Christie, on the other hand, is only the Thane of New Jersey.
Categories: MadCity Blogs

At the Gold Leaf Café...

Althouse - 9 hours 31 min ago

... you can talk about whatever you want.
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Should young women — in their 20s, with no children — be permitted to have the ultimate in birth control...

Althouse - 10 hours 34 min ago
... sterilization?
The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists weighed in on the topic last year with an updated policy statement on the benefits and risks of sterilization. The statement concludes that it's both a safe and effective means of permanent birth control. "Women who have completed their childbearing are candidates for sterilization," it says — without elaborating on what, precisely, that means. Does it refer to women who have already had a child, or several, and have now decided they're done? Or could that category also include an 18-year-old woman who has determined she's "completed" before ever getting started?

A major area of focus for ACOG, and the OB-GYNs it seeks to counsel, is the question of regret....Via Metafilter, where somebody says:
Kinda don't get why this is so controversial - there's nothing like the same sort of outrage over guys getting their tubes tied, even if they do it young.

(I joke, of course I know that endemic sexism is why.)And somebody responds:
I think it's worth saying out loud, nevertheless: the patriarchy values women primarily on the basis of their ability to rear children and provide sexual pleasure to men. A young woman wanting her tubes tied is explicitly refusing to cooperate with her assigned role, and that is not looked kindly upon by the men who take it upon themselves to regulate women's bodies.Should young minds be making such permanent decisions? Here's a BBC article "Is 25 the new cut-off point for adulthood?"
"Neuroscience has made these massive advances where we now don't think that things just stop at a certain age, that actually there's evidence of brain development well into early twenties and that actually the time at which things stop is much later than we first thought," says [child psychologist Laverne] Antrobus.One usually sees this sort of expert opinion in the context of discussions of criminal sentencing, but it sprang to my mind as I read about a woman "explicitly refusing to cooperate with her assigned role" and resisting "the men who take it upon themselves to regulate women's bodies." That sounds as though it might be a somewhat immature way of thinking about your personal life, a temporary stage that you might develop beyond. But the decision to have a child is also permanent, and we completely accept young minds making that decision, and tubal ligation can be reversed (and IVF is also still possible).
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"He's a hero to me... He's a fantastic humanitarian and that is how people should think of him."

Althouse - 11 hours 8 min ago
"He wanted to be a doctor without borders from when he was a kid. It's all he wanted to do.... He didn't just want to be a doctor, he wanted to be a doctor without borders."

Craig Spencer's uncle is distressed to hear criticism of his heroically humanitarian nephew, who went to great lengths to do good, but also did some meaningless little things — riding the subway, going bowling — that he could so easily have avoided.
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Megan Silberberger "heard the gunshots first and she came in running... She just grabbed his arm...."

Althouse - 11 hours 19 min ago
Silberberger is the heroic young teacher who began to stop the Seattle school shooter, Jaylen Fryberg, and then came the shot that killed him.

At the Daily Kos, there's this headline: "Young, petite, UNARMED, female teacher stopped today's school shooter."

Fryberg shot himself in the end. That's what stopped him. It sounds as though Silberberger even tried to prevent that.

CORRECTION: Originally, I referred to Silberberger as "first-grade" teacher. I misread "first-year" to mean first-grade. In law school, "first-year" means the first year of school for the students, but I can see that the linked article was referring to the teacher's level of experience.
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"A lot of people have an impulse to be prejudiced. But at the same time, they're like almost everyone..."

Althouse - Fri, 10/24/2014 - 8:09pm
"... in that they want to avoid being socially unacceptable. So they want to vent sexism and racism somehow — but only in ways that are considered socially acceptable."
And how can one do that? It's obvious: by expressing sexism/racism against men and whites only. If they'd been born long ago, they might have vented against women or blacks instead. That's why when I hear people expressing shamelessly anti-man or anti-white views, it doesn't strike me as a dramatic improvement over the expression of anti-woman or anti-black view....
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4 looks at red.

Althouse - Fri, 10/24/2014 - 7:07pm
Categories: MadCity Blogs

Embarrassing premature exultation by Buzzfeed's Evan McMorris-Santoro.

Althouse - Fri, 10/24/2014 - 6:53pm
"Watch A Republican Senate Candidate Sign A Young Woman’s Torso/'No pictures on this,' David Purdue jokes, as campaign staffers hold up signs in front of the camera," giggles nitwit Buzzfeed writer Evan McMorris-Santoro. Gotcha! Except you, Mr. McMorris-Santoro, were taken and you wanted to be taken, you wanted to hurt the bad old Republican, and you lapped up the story that you now have to choke down.

"CORRECTED: Dems Miss Insulin Pump In Video Of Perdue Signing Young Woman," reads the post now.
Click for more »
Categories: MadCity Blogs

Walker Leaves Out Missouri When He Brags that WI is "Fourth in the Midwest"

Uppity Wisconsin - Fri, 10/24/2014 - 6:41pm

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, "the Midwest region is comprised of Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, South Dakota, and Wisconsin."

So, even using Governor Scott Walker's contorted logic of arbitrarily going back only one year (not the beginning of his term) and using BLS monthy estimates that he previously derided as "inaccurate," Wisconsin is fifth, not fourth in Midwest job growth:

1) North Dakota 5.1%

2) Missouri 2.0%

3) Indiana 2.0%

4) Minnesota 1.8%

5) Wisconsin 1.5%

Why the difference?  Walker is conveniently leaving out Missouri in his tally of Midwest states.  

And considering that the Midwest is the most underperforming region in the country in job growth, this is like bragging your the fifth best football team in the Sun Belt conference.  

Categories: MadCity Blogs

The Coeur d'Alene Hitching Post controversy comes in for a quick, soft landing.

Althouse - Fri, 10/24/2014 - 6:35pm
What had happened was something I'd believed I could assure people was not going to happen, and I'm glad to see the local authorities — on receipt of a little push back from the country at large — gave matters a second thought and reversed their position:
The city of Coeur d'Alene, Idaho, says the Hitching Post, a for-profit wedding chapel owned by two ministers, doesn't have to perform same-sex marriages.

The city has been embroiled in controversy ever since the owners of the Hitching Post sued the city. They say a city anti-discrimination law threatened to force them to marry same-sex couples now that gay marriage is legal in Idaho....

Initially, the city said its anti-discrimination law did apply to the Hitching Post, since it is a commercial business. Earlier this week, Coeur d'Alene city attorney Mike Gridley sent a letter to the Knapps’ attorneys at the Alliance Defending Freedom saying the Hitching Post would have to become a not-for-profit to be exempt. But Gridley said after further review, he determined the ordinance doesn’t specify non-profit or for-profit.And let that be a lesson to everyone. Remember Coeur d'Alene. Don't redo that controversy. It's been resolved correctly now, and nobody ought to make that mistake again. There now, can we all live in peace and diversity?
Categories: MadCity Blogs

At the Water-Sky Café...

Althouse - Fri, 10/24/2014 - 1:13pm

... float your ideas.
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"There were people who were put on that list because the Nixon people — very shrewdly, I think — sense from their life style that they were enemies."

Althouse - Fri, 10/24/2014 - 12:33pm
"Joe Namath has never said anything political in his life, but they knew he was unreliable. To them, a guy who will flaunt dames and have a bar and look the way he does is clearly a guy who'll flout authority, and they don't like that. There's a Nixon way of doing everything. And the essence of totalitarianism is precisely that: in a totalitarian society there's a state way of doing everything — mathematics, forestry, sex. I think that's what the enemies list was all about — enforcing a kind of orthodoxy in everything. I'm certainly not saying that these guys were Nazis, but they operated like Nazis. James Reston, Jr.... wrote to Albert Speer and got a very interesting letter back. Naturally, it's hedged with comments about how reluctant he is to comment on the American political situation, but the parallels Speer points to between Nixon and the Nazi White Houses are remarkable — the same loyalty to the leader without any consideration of ideology, the same drawing of power into a tiny, isolated group, even the same shielding of the leader by giving him only a prepared news summary. You know, I've read a lot of biographies of Nixon, and they all seem to agree on one thing — that he really was an uncommonly good poker player. I think I've figured out why. It's that he always looks as though he's bluffing. You've got three kinds up and he raises, and you look at his face and you think, 'Nah, he doesn't have the aces.' But he'd look exactly the same if he didn't have them. He's always bluffing. There's no reality. A strange man — but awfully dangerous."

Said Frank Mankiewicz, interviewed in the November 19, 1973 issue of The New Yorker. Mankiewicz, who had been Robert F. Kennedy’s press secretary and who directed George McGovern’s 1972 presidential campaign, died yesterday at the age of 90. From the obituary:
A scion of Hollywood, the son of Herman J. Mankiewicz, who wrote “Citizen Kane,” and the nephew of Joseph L. Mankiewicz, who directed “All About Eve,” he grew up with an Algonquin West round table in his Beverly Hills household, regaled by movie stars, famous writers and comedians like the Marx Brothers.What a lucky man!
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