Student loan debt is now extending to K-12 private educations
, fueled by parents who believe getting their children into the "right" primary school is essential to future success.
A new study conducted by Dr. Eric Braverman, president of the nonprofit Path Foundation in New York City, and Dr. Nirav Shah, New York State’s Commissioner of Health suggests that the Body Mass Index significantly underestimates the rate of obesity in America
, especially for women. Based on BMI, about one-third of Americans are considered obese, but when other methods of measuring obesity are used, that number may be closer to 60%. [more inside]
On September 13, 1859, a former Chief Justice of the California Supreme Court shot and killed a U.S. Senator
in what has been called the last notable duel in American history
. The duel itself can be interpreted as a sort of proxy battle between pro- and anti-slavery groups
of the time, and a harbinger of the American Civil War (which would begin a year and half later).
The newly released trailer for Total Recall (2012)
shows a Quaid quite conspicously not getting his ass to Mars. It could all have been different, as many versions of Total Recall 2
have been in the works over the years. Meanwhile is the Robocop remake anything but total recall?
And has the American action movie gone kablooey?
The GOP’s woman problem is that it has a serious problem with women.
Frank Rich on George Stephanopoulos's unanswered question, how the Republicans have shifted to being the party of misogyny since the 70s, and why Mitt Romney would be just as bad as Rick Santorum.
"It’s been nearly 6 years since the series finale of The West Wing, and more than 12 since the one-hour drama, which [Aaron] Sorkin created and largely wrote, first walked and talked its way through NBC’s Wednesday-night lineup; and yet you might think the series never ended, given the currency it still seems to enjoy in Washington, the frequency with which it comes up in D.C. conversations and is quoted or referenced on political blogs. In part this is because the smart, nerdy—they might prefer “precocious”—kids who grew up in the early part of the last decade worshipping the cool, technocratic charm of Sorkin’s characters have today matured into the young policy prodigies and press operatives who advise, brief, and excuse the behavior of the most powerful people in the country.
The ‘white’ slave children of New Orleans
: Almost immediately after the law came into practice, Northerners and abolitionists set up relief organisations, which battled to establish schools and provide other forms of support – but their resources were limited. They soon discovered it was near-impossible to find sympathy and support in a war-torn and racially-prejudiced county.
is a collection of photographs of beautiful antique, historic and vintage clothing from Europe and North America. A feast of fashion history images
from the 17th century to the 1920’s with a brief FAQ page here
"Still, I'm willing to bet that future generations will look back on the period between 2006 and 2008 as the real turning point. Here was the moment when what remained of the American Century ran out of steam and ground to a halt. More specifically, when Bush gave up on victory in Iraq (thereby abandoning expectations of U.S. military power transforming the Greater Middle East) and when the Great Recession brought the U.S. economy to its knees (the consequences of habitual profligacy coming home to roost), Luce's formulation lost any resemblance to reality."--Andrew Bacevich
on how "The American Century Is Over—Good Riddance"
"So I'm literally walking around and talking to people, "Is there a black-owned restaurant, or a black-owned dry cleaner?" and folks are looking at me like I'm insane. And if I didn't know this, I'm sure that folks outside the black community don't have this as part of their reality or part of their picture for black America. When we talk about black people, the black situation, problems in the black community, you know, we start with, "Black kids are least likely to graduate from school; black unemployment is four times higher than the national average," all these numbers. But why can't we include that over 90 percent of businesses in the black community are not owned by black people or local residents? If we were to add that to the conversation, maybe folks would say, "Oh, well no wonder things are so bad there," and start thinking about things in a different way instead of allowing those awful numbers to be a reflection of our propensities. Why is it that my people are just supposed to be the perpetual consumer class, and everyone else is supposed to benefit from our money?"
It's a crazy ol' world: All Presidents (but one) are related; via King John, the foe of Robin Hood
. And they said irony was dead.
In a fascinating discussion on PBS News Hour
, Zbigniew Brzezinski
, (US National Security Advisor to President Jimmy Carter from 1977 to 1981) promoting his new book, Strategic Vision: America and the Crisis of Global Power
, criticizes the American public's understanding of world affairs as the least-informed of the developed countries of the world.
We see the consequences of an American public's ignorance of world affairs in America's foreign policy. How did this happen and what can be done to turn the tide? To enable real understanding of world affairs by the American public? [more inside]
We're All State Capitalists Now
'No, according to some commentators, the contest between the two Asian superpowers is also fundamentally a contest between economic models: market capitalism vs. state capitalism.' [more inside]
There are several groups
trying to pass bills in different states to ban the application of foreign laws
in a US court
, especially Sharia law. These groups are almost all
using model legislation
drafted by anti-Muslim activist David Yerushalmi
Everyone knows America's Oldest Brewery
is D.G. Yuengling & Son
) of Pottsville, PA
(and Tampa, FL
family owned brewery was established as the "Eagle Brewery" in 1829 by a German immigrant named David Gottlob Jüngling. After the original brewery burned down in 1831 it was relocated to its current location. It was built into a mountain
with caves dug
into the side, a common practice to preserve beer and to achieve the cool temperatures required to make lager
Yuengling spent most of its history as a small regional brewery and only began to attract national attention years after the launch of Yuengling Traditional Lager
in 1987, which went on to become the flagship product of the company and now accounts for 80% of Yuengling's production.
On the strength of that growth, and with other brewers being bought out by or outsourcing
production to foreign companies
, Yuengling has now passed The Boston Beer Company
to claim the title of America's largest brewing company
as well. In this globalized beer era where giants war for market share
, products from America's new largest brewer are only available in 14 states.
On December 19th, Ford closed the doors of their St Paul
auto plant, ending 800 jobs and 86 years of history. The plant was closed as part of Ford's move to end the Ford Ranger in North America, a truck that will still be available overseas
. Born of the 80s gas crisis, the Ranger has been Ford's compact truck for almost forty years
Ford blames demand for large trucks and the shrinking gap in price between the compact and full-sized truck markets, spurring concern
about the future of the compact truck market in North America.
The US National Insitutes of Health recently filed notice
of a prospective grant to give an exclusive license to New York based Kannalife
for Development of Cannabinoid(s) and Cannabidiol(s) (i.e. marijuana) Based Therapeutics To Treat Hepatic Encephalopathy in Humans. Toke of The Town covers the issue
, including an interview with Kannalife CEO Dean Pethanas.
39 years ago today, Apollo 17
splashed down in the South Pacific, marking the end to manned exploration of the Moon
. What we learned from those 10 years of discovery was amazing. [more inside]
"Imagine 12 men in a dorm all in diapers and sitting in their own feces," he says. "It smelled like a combination of what people had for lunch that day and pus from people's open wounds. I've been in a wheelchair now for three years, and the jail is by far the worst place I've ever seen for a disabled person." -- L.A. Weekly on "Wheelchair Hell" in the L.A. County Men's Jail
The Nation's William Deresiewicz looks at Ann Beattie's evolution as a writer.
The Percentages: A Biography of Class
. An autobiographical essay about growing up in the working class (as the author defines it) and then meeting the middle class (again, as the author defines it). This is so far outside my experience that I can't even summarize it properly, but it's worth reading.
"I wonder whether the endless fake cultural wars around identity politics are the main reason we have been able to ignore the tech slowdown for so long." - Peter Thiel
, The End of the Future [more inside]
In October 1870, as American Jews were observing the High Holidays, The Atlantic Magazine published an article
called "Our Israelitish Bretheren
." 'At the time, it served as a sort of crash course about a tiny, mystifying minority. Today, it survives as something quite different: a snapshot of a transitional moment in Jewish history.' Written by American biographer, James Parton
-- the founder of American Heritage magazine
'Few Americans today can name more than one or two current boxers
, but boxing once stood at the center of American life. It has become a ghost sport, long discredited but still hovering in the nation’s consciousness, refusing to go away and be silent entirely. But there was a time when things were very different. Boxing's history winds a thread through the broader history of the nation.
U.S. Poverty Rate, 1 in 6, at Highest Level in Years (NYT) -
An additional 2.6 million people slipped below
the poverty line in 2010, census officials said, making 46.2 million people in poverty in the United States
, the highest number in the 52 years the Census Bureau has been tracking it, said Trudi Renwick, chief of the Poverty Statistic Branch
. That represented
15.1 percent of the country. The poverty line in 2010 was at $22,113 for a family of four
"World War II has immesurably magnified the Negro's awareness of the disparity between the American profession and practice of democracy."
During WWII, the armed forces were still marked by segregation of troops, with black troops often led solely by white officers, there were many instances of violence against African-American troops
as well as general discrimination.
While many African-American troops were serving with honor and some with particular levels of distinction
, a stateside newspaper - the Pittsburgh Courier - began the "Double V" campaign: "Democracy: Victory at Home, Victory Abroad"
after printing a letter from a reader asking "Should I Sacrifice To Live ‘Half American?’"
. The response
from the community was overwhelming. Many people, not just activists
, latched onto the campaign and made it a huge success for the community, helping to lay the ground work for the beginnings of the post-war Civil Rights movement.
Several commentators are advocating
of the practice of law.