Breitbarted! [BUSINESSINSIDER.COM] "Conservative news site Breitbart.com duped by fake story that Paul Krugman declared dankruptcy. A satirical item published last week purporting that economist Paul Krugman had filed for bankruptcy has spread to Boston.com and the conservative website Breitbart this morning. The item originated in The Daily Currant, a satirical news site. Austria's Format online magazine picked it up, and their report was subsequently cited by Boston.com [It has since been taken down 404 error.]. Then it spread to Breitbart. It has since been taken down this morning, but here's a screenshot:" [more inside]
With hits like Party Hard, It's Time to Party, and Long Live the Party classic records like Party Til You Puke and The "Party All Goddamn Night" EP, Andrew W.K. (previously) likes to party. He's excited to be "promoting partying and world peace." for the US State Department, who just named Andrew to be a cultural ambassador to Bahrain.
Dinner with Tucker Carlson seemed cheery and worthwhile compared to counseling a bunch of cringing liberals.
The opening song from Jesus Christ Superstar has been sung by many people. Here are some of them. [more inside]
Everyone knows that correlation doesn't imply causation, but researchers invariably need to come up with plausible explanations (i.e., models) for the patterns found in their data. However, very different models can "explain" the same pattern. The books The Bottom Billion: Why the Poorest Countries are Failing and What Can Be Done About It and Wars, Guns and Votes: Democracy in Dangerous Places by Oxford economist Paul Collier try to explain why some countries have remained poor using data from econometric studies. In his very interesting review (PDF), Mike McGovern, a political anthropologist at Yale, critiques the types of explanations found in popular economics books. Statistician Andrew Gelman has further thoughts on descriptive statistics, causal inference, and story time.
8 poeple died on Saturday, August 14th when an off-road truck race driver accidentally veered into the crowd of spectators in California's Mojave Desert. Andrew Therrien , 22, was there and pushed three people out of the way when the truck jumped off course, saving their lives. One of them was his three-year-old daughter. Therrien was killed instantly.
MTV's Jersey Shore, a Real World-style reality program centered around eight young Italian-Americans living together in a beach house, is garnering charges of racism following their use of the allegedly pejorative terms guido and the feminine counterpart guidette in advertisements. But what exactly is a guido? [more inside]
Prominent blogger Andrew Sullivan develops an unhealthy obsession over the (lack of) details surrounding the birth of Sarah Palin's youngest child. Sullivan really, really won't let it go. Persistent rumors lead the editor of the Alaska Daily News to, "finally decide, after watching this go on unabated for months, to let a reporter try to do a story about the 'conspiracy theory that would not die' and, possibly, report the facts of Trig's birth thoroughly enough to kill the nonsense once and for all." Palin releases press release slamming the paper. Editor of paper publishes email from Palin's office along with his response. Palin complains about "bored, anonymous, pathetic bloggers who lie," says episode is, "more indication of continued problems in the world of journalism." She also thinks Katie Couric is bad at journalism, not the center of everybody's universe, and is exploiting Palin. Mike Huckabee disagrees, says Couric was "extraordinarily gentle" with Palin. Political pundits and journalists are left scratching their heads - is she crazy? Or a crazy genius? 2012 is just around the corner.
Excellent 8,000 word essay on waste disposal in the endlessly superlative LRB. Andrew O'Hagen goes bin-raiding with Freegans, talks up Zero Waste, rides with the (contraversial) Harrow binmen, meets the Community Recycling Network, tramps over the Calvert Landfill Site and pays a visit to the London Waste EcoPark Recycling and Energy Centre aka the Edmonton Incinerator. Doesn’t meet any mafia though. 8,000 words and none wasted.
If Art Bell is to be believed, up to 11 million Australians could be calling USA home due to years of severe drought in the country's food bowl. The story picked up, and given appropriate treatment by the venerable News Corporation online mouthpiece news.com.au. Is it hard being a climate change sceptic when your boss is a convert? Is climate change a left wing plot?
While the Queen was in New Zealand on Christmas Eve 1953 a lahar destroyed a rail bridge in Tangiwai. When the Wellington to Auckland Express tried to cross the bridge, the resulting accident killed 151 people. On behalf of her mother, Prince Andrew is currently in New Zealand, commemorating a hero, and another lahar has errupted, from the same volcano. The death toll is zero.
MEDIA MISTAKES? Byron Calame, public editor of The New York Times, wrote a piece recently about how a faulty Page One story went unchallenged. He notes that despite a questionable premise, the story went uncorrected for a week, and even provoked a piece of art on the Times' op-ed page. Calame's piece gives us a tiny bit of insight into editorial mistakes and correction policies in the media, particularly when challenged from the outside. You get the sense of a behemoth bureaucracy in motion, difficult to head off, harder yet to correct. The Times itself collected some of its more ridiculous errors in its book Kill Duck Before Serving a few years ago. But less amusing is what law professor Eric Muller found. In early May, he heard Fox News' Judge Andrew Napolitano telling a story meant to illustrate how out of control the federal government's commerce-governing powers have become. Though Muller researched the supposed case Napolitano reported and found nothing in the legal archives, and asked Napolitano for more details, Napolitano has yet to respond.
Berkeley's infamous Naked Guy died of an apparent suicide on Thursday. Before and after his 15 minutes, he was a real person. People loved him. Rest in peace, Andrew Martinez. (NSFW)
George Will's column today (WaPo; reg. req'd) sounds a theme that's becoming common among "traditional" conservatives: A growing wariness of the Christian conservative movement. Andrew Sullivan has been discussing this at length (as has MeFi here), but more and more conservative commentators are beginning to allude to it, if only indirectly. And wasn't Laura Bush's comedy routine at the White House Correspondents’ Association dinner specifically designed to distance the president from the movement?