In terms of our genes
, we humans are all the same -- except
for the ways in which we're different. Pharmacogenomics has for years been touted as the ultimate benefit of the genomics revolution. But to many, this revolution has a troubling side.
posted by semmi
on Oct 13, 2004 -
George Bushes's Military record: a critical analysis
This pdf file is about as definitive a look as we are likely to get on the Bush military record. Clearly most post4ers/readers of Metafilter do not support Bush, but having some clear-cut evidence at hand to use in arguments against those who attack the Kerry militaryrecord, this will give the Bushites reason to move on to other topics
posted by Postroad
on Sep 8, 2004 -
Terrorist Alert Level: Red Herring!
The New York Times reported today that much of the information that led to the heightened alert in New York and Washington D.C. is actually three or four years old
and that authorities have no evidence or recent communications indicating an upcoming terrorist attack.
George Pataki and Michael Bloomberg, who are both speaking at the upcoming Republican convention, are making political hay
off of people's fears of another 9/11. Some New Yorkers are worried about the enormous cost
of the alert to the local economy, as bridge traffic snarls to a crawl.
Who needs foriegn terrorism when we can just make our own! Are we scared yet?!
posted by insomnia_lj
on Aug 3, 2004 -
Correcting the Record.
In meticulous detail the 9/11 commission's report found that the hijackers had repeatedly broken the law in entering the United States, that Mr. bin Laden may have micromanaged the attacks but did not pay for them, that intelligence agencies had considered the threat of suicide hijackings, and that Mr. Bush received an August 2001 briefing on evidence of continuing domestic terrorist threats from Al Qaeda.
posted by the fire you left me
on Jul 25, 2004 -
The dog ate my service records.
The Pentagon has announced that the payroll records for National Guard service for three months between 1972 and 1973 have been accidentally destroyed. These three months coincidentally cover the disputed period of George W. Bush's service in the Texas Air National Guard. (Similar Google link here
, via dKos
posted by XQUZYPHYR
on Jul 9, 2004 -
the NYT offers up an analysis of its pre-war coverage. "But we have found a number of instances of coverage that was not as rigorous as it should have been. In some cases, information that was controversial then, and seems questionable now, was insufficiently qualified or allowed to stand unchallenged. Looking back, we wish we had been more aggressive in re-examining the claims as new evidence emerged — or failed to emerge."
posted by raaka
on May 26, 2004 -
The John Markoff of the New York Times [registration required]
reports that Google plans to roll-out a text and file search tool code-named Puffin
for finding information stored on PCs. The move is seen as a defensive one; Microsoft plans to include PC searching in its new operating system, scheduled to be released in 2006 (at the earliest).
posted by tranquileye
on May 19, 2004 -
North Korean Nuclear Devices.
"Abdul Qadeer Khan, the Pakistani scientist who sold nuclear technology around the world, has told his interrogators that during a trip to North Korea five years ago he was taken to a secret underground nuclear plant and shown what he described as three nuclear devices."
posted by homunculus
on Apr 13, 2004 -
-- created triptychs from images found on the NYTimes home page. At 15 minutes after each hour, a new one is generated. From Robert Spahr, who also makes premise cruft,
which takes images and headlines from CNN once every 8 hours. see here for more
posted by amberglow
on Apr 9, 2004 -
Eight U.S. Troops Killed in Shiite Uprising
Occupation Forces Battle Cleric's Followers As Widespread Demonstrations Erupt in Iraq A Young Radical's Anti-U.S. Wrath Is Unleashed
For months, as American occupation authorities have focused on a moderate Shiite leader, Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani, a radical young Shiite cleric named Moktada al-Sadr has been spewing invective and threatening a widespread insurrection. On Sunday, he unleashed it.
At his word, thousands of disciples, wearing green headbands and carrying automatic rifles, stormed into the streets of several cities and set off the most widespread mayhem of the occupation. Witnesses and occupation officials said the disciples occupied police stations, fired rocket-propelled grenades at American troops and overran government security in Kufa, the town in south central Iraq where Mr. Sadr lives. "The occupation is over!" many yelled. "We are now controlled by Sadr!"
posted by y2karl
on Apr 4, 2004 -
The file-sharing fight continues. Recording industry associations in Denmark, Germany, Italy and Canada have filed lawsuits or taken other legal action, aiming mainly at heavy users accused of offering a large number of songs online.
In other news
, A study of file-sharing's effects on music sales says online music trading appears to have had little part in the recent slide in CD sales.
posted by ashbury
on Mar 31, 2004 -
Tom Friedman, well meaning NYT columnnist lunkhead, gets job outsourced
In a stunning development, Tom Friedman - until recently the famous NYT op-ed columnist who has downplayed
the outsourcing of American jobs, finds his job has been outsourced
due to an egregious factual error concerning T-shirts. "[ BANGALORE, India ] I am delighted to write to you today as the new foreign-affairs columnist for the New York Times . My name is Tam Veeraraghavan. Ah, you say, you've never heard of Tam Veeraraghavan, but the name sounds vaguely Indian. Well, I am an Indian. I live in Bangalore. And I'm now the pundit you read in this newspaper. Now some of you might think that I'm an example of how outsourcing is hurting American workers. Well let me introduce you to Yamini Narayanan, an Indian-born 35-year-old with a Ph.D. in economics....."
posted by troutfishing
on Mar 11, 2004 -
Mel Gibson wanted Frank Rich's bloody entrails on a stick, wanted to kill Rich's dog. But now...
In the buildup to his new film, Mel Gibson said, about Frank Rich, "I want to kill him. I want his entrails on a stick I want to kill his dog"
(The New Yorker, September 15) . Any american non-celebrity teenager who uttered such threats would have been immediately arrested, interrogated, and forced to submit to lengthy counseling. Yet to right wing US press media, it seems, the "entrails" threat was immaterial
. Indeed, chirps
WorldNet's Barbara Simpson, "Gibson is the bravest man in Hollywood. Perhaps, he's the bravest in the country....Gibson's hell has been very public. "
Now, on Leno, Mel has granted Rich forgiveness and absolution
for Rich's sin of criticizing "The Passion" : "You try to perform an act of love even for those who persecute you"
, said Gibson to Leno.
posted by troutfishing
on Mar 7, 2004 -
The vertical nature of New York City has long helped define its image, with families stacked on top of each other and penthouse apartments reaching the clouds. But for generations, tens of thousands of people have made do with another New York reality - the basement apartment - and they literally climb out of the ground to enter the city that is always on top of them.
As mentioned in literature
, personal ads
--and soon to be the penthouse of urban worker housing
posted by y2karl
on Feb 25, 2004 -
The Making of a Sex Slave
(NY Times; reg. req) The next time you seek comfort in the arms of a working girl, ask yourself if she's lying down with you because she likes the money or sex, of if she's doing it because she's been kidnapped, beaten, raped, taken to a foreign country where she doesn't speak the language, and told that the corrupt local police will murder a member of her family if she tries to escape. Prostitution might be victimless crime
, but the horrors described here certainly aren't; the problem is, how's a john with a conscience going to tell the difference? A (much) longer report, terrifying in its thoroughness, on a topic lightly touched on
posted by hhc5
on Jan 23, 2004 -
...According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the following are among the occupations with the largest projected job growth from 2000 to 2010: combined food-preparation and serving, including fast food; customer-service representative; registered nurse; retail salesperson; computer-support specialist; cashier, except gaming; office clerk; security guard; computer-software engineer, applications; waiter; general or operations manager; truck driver, heavy and tractor-trailer; nursing aide, orderly, or attendant; janitor or cleaner, except maid or housekeeping cleaner; postsecondary teacher; teacher assistant; home health aide; laborer or freight, stock, and material mover, hand; computer-software engineer, systems software; landscaping or groundskeeping.
Are We Still a Middle-Class Nation?
comes from The State Of The Union
section in The Atlantic
. Compare and contrast A Poor Cousin Of The Middle Class
posted by y2karl
on Jan 21, 2004 -
Hollywood? Old. Bollywood? That's soooo 2003. Make room for Nollywood
, Nigeria's own film industry which is growing by leaps and bounds every year, and is currently worth about $45 million dollars
. About 400 Nollywood films are produced every year many on a budget of around $15000 and are distributed almost entirely by VHS and VCD. The stories are very much simplistic
and pulpy (check out 419 Stalk Exchange. Yes, 419 as in the email scam) but are much preferred
by local residents and emigre's than the usual arthouse fair one often thinks of when talking about African cinema. Now if you'll excuse me there's a bucket of popcorn and a copy of GSM Connection
waiting for me in the living room.
posted by PenDevil
on Jan 19, 2004 -
I.M.F. Report Says U.S. Deficits Threaten World Economy
With its rising budget deficit and ballooning trade imbalance, the United States is running up a foreign debt of such record-breaking proportions that it threatens the financial stability of the global economy, according to a report released Wednesday by the International Monetary Fund. Prepared by a team of I.M.F. economists, the report sounded a loud alarm about the shaky fiscal foundation of the United States, questioning the wisdom of the Bush administration's tax cuts and warning that large budget deficits pose "significant risks" not just for the United States but for the rest of the world. The report warns that the United States' net financial obligations to the rest of the world could be equal to 40 percent of its total economy within a few years--"an unprecedented level of external debt for a large industrial country," according to the fund, that could play havoc with the value of the dollar and international exchange rates.
From The Brookings Institute: Sustained Budget Deficits: Longer-Run U.S. Economic Performance and the Risk of Financial and Fiscal Disarray
(Full Report PDF
posted by y2karl
on Jan 8, 2004 -
Libya has pledged to dismantle its atomic weapons program. That is obviously good news, in addition to being a victory for George W. Bush's aggressive foreign policy. But what, exactly, is Col. Muammar el-Qaddafi giving up? Not much... Libya may be closing down its nuclear program because it wasn't working anyway. This points to an important reality about nuclear weapons: they are extremely difficult to make. Claims that bomb plans can be downloaded from the Internet, or that fissile material is easily obtained on the black market and slapped together into an ultimate weapon, seem little more than talk-radio jabber. Nations like Libya that have made determined attempts to obtain atomic munitions have not even come close. If the Bomb Is So Easy to Make, Why Don't More Nations Have It?
posted by y2karl
on Jan 4, 2004 -
The Greatest Car Ever Built
O mighty Slant-6 engine, most magnificent creation of the coal-steel industrial heart of America at the zenith of her manufacturing genius! (NY Times, req required).
posted by jamsterdam
on Dec 18, 2003 -
The fabulous ruins of Detroit:
"After decades of blight, large swathes of Detroit are being reclaimed by nature. Roughly a third of this 139-square-mile city consists of weed-choked lots and dilapidated buildings . . . rather than fight this return to nature, urban farmers have embraced it, gradually converting 15 acres of idle land into more than 40 community gardens and microfarms — some consuming entire blocks." [note: NY Times link]
posted by ryanshepard
on Dec 9, 2003 -
The value of disobedience. [note: nytimes]
"Ignoring the reactionary policies of the Vatican, some local priests and nuns quietly do what they can to save parishioners from AIDS." So: when and why do people choose to quietly disobey, rather than leave and promote change from outside their social institutions...or vice versa? Should dissenters just leave, or stay and fight? Anecdotes from Republicans and NRA members are especially welcome ;-)
posted by stonerose
on Nov 26, 2003 -
Tom DeLay thinks of the children.
The GOP House Leader is attempting to create a charity fund for abused and neglected children. Oh, the fund also pays for "late-night convention parties, a luxury suite during President Bush's speech at Madison Square Garden and yacht cruises" during the 2004 GOP convention. Unlike election funds now restricted by Campaign Finance law, donations to DeLay's semi-charity will be tax-exempt, and of course completely unreported to election officials. (NYT Link)
posted by XQUZYPHYR
on Nov 14, 2003 -
Science Times: 25th Anniversary
The first issue of Science Times[weekly section of N.Y. Times
] appeared 25 years ago, on Nov. 14, 1978. Its guiding principle ever since has been that science is not a collection of answers, but a way of asking questions, an enterprise driven by curiosity. To celebrate the anniversary, we pose 25 of the most provocative questions facing science. As always, answers are provisional. [free reg req'd]
posted by Postroad
on Nov 11, 2003 -
Today's big bombshell: Private Jessica Lynch reports that she was raped.
But here's the kicker. In the biography, she confesses that she has no memory of the incident. The citation comes from "medical records." But even author Rick Bragg notes
that the records "do not tell whether her captors assaulted her almost lifeless, broken body after she was lifted from the wreckage, or if they assaulted her and then broke her bones into splinters until she was almost dead." Serious allegations against her captors or trumped up charges that fail to pinpoint the perpetrator? (It's also worth noting that Bragg was suspended from the New York Times
when he relied on the work of stringers and interns. Is it possible that a similar approach was utilized with these medical records?)
posted by ed
on Nov 6, 2003 -
Friedman quotes a former Swedish prime minister.
"Our defining date is now 1989 and yours is 2001," I find this to be true. For most of the 90's, the US struggled to find a new purpose for its power. A few peace-keeping missions, a skirmish in Iraq (the first time), but for the most part, no real global strategy. Europe, on the other hand, has made significant progress with developing the EU, the euro (which no one believed would ever come about so quickly), and a semi-unified policy concerning the rest of the world (GB being the notable exception). NY Times
posted by BlueTrain
on Nov 2, 2003 -
Europe's not-too-modest anti-piracy proposal.
If accepted, it means that "not only could a teenager who downloaded a music file be sent to jail under it; so too could managers of the Internet service provider that the teenager happened to use, whether they knew what the teenager was doing or not." The proposal is being spearheaded by French parliamentarian Janelly Fourtou. Coincidentally enough, her husband is the chief executive of Vivendi Universal
posted by Ljubljana
on Oct 19, 2003 -
You are fat because there is too much corn. [NYT, forfeit of first-born son required]
I love good old-fashioned materialism, and Michael Pollan (author of The Botany of Desire
) scores one for the team with this article on the economics of corn production. Are we fat because New Deal agricultural policy was overturned in the 70s by Rusty Butz? Now there's a trailing question we can all enjoy.
posted by condour75
on Oct 11, 2003 -
Krugman on Iraq
"The direct military cost of the occupation is $4 billion a month, and there's no end in sight. But that's only part of the bill.
This week Paul Bremer suddenly admitted that Iraq would need "several tens of billions" in aid next year. That remark was probably aimed not at the public but at his masters in Washington; he apparently needed to get their attention."
posted by skallas
on Aug 30, 2003 -
The Forest Brothers
spent years hiding in the woods of Estonia and Latvia. They lived alone, carefully covering their tracks, sleeping in clammy bunkers, no bigger than walk-in closets. Then things got less comfortable. (warning: nytimesfilter.)
posted by alms
on Aug 25, 2003 -
Hidden Sides, Hushed Ideals of a Civil Rights Strategist
Bayard Rustin - Quaker
, former Young Communist cum anti-communist socialist, advocate of non-violence, ''known homosexual''
, architect of the March on Washington and, it goes without saying, great American. A critical socialist take
on Rustin. Here, for our resident Malcolm X man
, a debate between Rustin and X
in 1960--do note the latter's views evolved greatly between then and his assassination--and here is Nat Hentoff
on Rustin. A recent P.O.V. fim on Rustin - Brother Outsider
posted by y2karl
on Aug 25, 2003 -
This community is filled with bloggers and I wondered if anyone had seen Maureen O'Dowd's take on how the Presidential Candidates are starting to use, for better or worse, "blogging" as a method to get their "message" across. ( Registration required )
posted by RubberHen
on Aug 13, 2003 -
Steve Martin's take on WMD
With a little stab to the left and a little stab to the right, it's good to read something funny. It's a NYT article but there's a Metafilter login I recall. Someone can tell us what that is?
I think that this sort of entertainment is a better use for the hollywood set than this
posted by Red58
on Aug 8, 2003 -