I am not busy. I am the laziest ambitious person I know. Like most writers, I feel like a reprobate who does not deserve to live on any day that I do not write, but I also feel that four or five hours is enough to earn my stay on the planet for one more day. On the best ordinary days of my life, I write in the morning, go for a long bike ride and run errands in the afternoon, and in the evening I see friends, read or watch a movie. This, it seems to me, is a sane and pleasant pace for a day.
Tim Kreider: The ‘Busy’ Trap
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane
on Jul 1, 2012 -
"Speaking for many scientists and engineers who have looked carefully and independently at the science of climate, we have a message to any candidate for public office: There is no compelling scientific argument for drastic action to "decarbonize" the world's economy. Even if one accepts the inflated climate forecasts of the IPCC, aggressive greenhouse-gas control policies are not justified economically." Link
. [more inside]
posted by BobbyVan
on Jan 27, 2012 -
Firearms Philosophy of Ivan Chesnokov
(NSFW). Ivan Chesnokov is a (supposedly) Russian firearms enthusiast who voices his strong opinions on firearms on various web forums. This is a collection of his writings. He also attempts to explain everything worth knowing about firearms.
posted by Joakim Ziegler
on Dec 22, 2011 -
Digital news is broken. Actually, news itself is broken. Almost all news organizations have abandoned reporting in favor of editorial; have cultivated reader opinion in place of responsibility; and have traded ethical standards for misdirection and whatever consensus defines as forgivable. And this is before you even lay eyes on what passes for news design on a monitor or device screen these days. Suggestions for clarifying online news sites from Andy Rutledge. [more inside]
posted by netbros
on Jul 18, 2011 -
The way different people respond to Wikipedia
may tell us more about them (or ourselves as we react) than it does about The Opus itself. Oh well, when you're rowing a boat, you're always looking at where you've been. At any rate, Atlantic has posted a nice selection of opinions on a worthy, controversial subject by mostly recognizable names.
posted by Twang
on Jan 17, 2011 -
"Every day there are untold millions of comments, texts, and online interactions. Millions. And each one says, I am here and I extend my consciousness to there. There might have been a time when humans were content to sit and simply be, like the goat I saw yesterday sitting contently in a patch of sunshine at the Lincoln Park Zoo. That time was long ago. We want the news. We want to chatter and gossip. We want to say "I am alive" in a billion billion different ways. And now here is internet, providing such an easy, easy way to do that
posted by nomadicink
on Nov 19, 2010 -
Today, June 28, 2010, marks the last day of the 2009-10 session of the Supreme Court of the United States. This day will mark a number of historical events
, not only in terms of the cases to be handed down. [more inside]
posted by valkyryn
on Jun 28, 2010 -
Fox News is the most trusted news network in the United States
, according to a new poll [.pdf]
of 1,151 Americans conducted by Public Policy Polling
(a polling firm with a mostly Democratic and progressive list of clients
), the most trusted news network among Americans is FOX News, which was trusted by 49% of respondents (beating out CNN, MS-NBC, CBS, NBC, and ABC (though PBS was not included in the survey)).
The pollsters conclude:
“A generation ago you would have expected Americans to place their trust in the most
neutral and unbiased conveyors of news,” said Dean Debnam, President of Public Policy
Polling. “But the media landscape has really changed and now they’re turning more
toward the outlets that tell them what they want to hear.”
posted by washburn
on Jan 26, 2010 -
What is the logical consequence of noting the fact that the terrorist groups that make a difference on planet Earth—such as Hamas and Hezbollah, the PLO, Colombia's FARC—are extensions of, respectively, Iran, Saudi Arabia and Egypt, and Venezuela? It is the negation of the U.S. government's favorite axiom. It means that when George W. Bush spoke, and when Barack Obama speaks, of America being "at war" against "extremism" or "extremists" they are either being stupid or acting stupid to avoid dealing with the nasty fact that many governments wage indirect warfare.
International relations professor Angelo M. Codevilla argues that Osama bin Laden is not quite influential, not quite relevant, and probably dead
. (multipage version)
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane
on Mar 27, 2009 -
Rethinking Public Opinion
- the immense importance of public opinion polling in American politics, and the under-reported problems at the heart of the enterprise, combine to call for a serious critique of the polling industry, its assumptions, and its method
posted by Gyan
on Nov 8, 2008 -
(all caps, because that's the way he said everything), Los Angeles Television/Radio Legend, has died at the age of 94. A protege of Walter Winchell who came to L.A. in 1951 to restart a stalled career as a news anchor, he was famous for his dramatic style and extremely UNobjective reporting. Retrospective of his colorful career: Part One
, Part Two
. Best known on the Web as the "outstanding news reporter" who narrated the '50s alarmist documentary "Perversion for Profit"
, he was also acknowledged as the model for the Mary Tyler Moore show's bombastic newsman character Ted Baxter (seen here
sitting in on a real newscast). Not restricting his editorializing to his daily "One Reporter's Opinion" segment, he is credited/blamed for the election of Sam Yorty as mayor of Los Angeles. And when TV News outgrew him, he found a home for the next 30 years doing Talk Radio (where some of us believe Rush Limbaugh also modeled his style after him). And that’s the up-to-the-minute obitfilter; up to the minute, that’s all the obitfilter. [more inside]
posted by wendell
on Sep 13, 2008 -
Recently an opinion writer for The Age
, Catherine Deveny unleashed a firestorm of sorts when she wrote an article entitled 'Why Do Some Wives Still Change Their Names?
'. The reaction to her article (from both men and women) was strong; so much so that in a recent follow up article entitled 'I Don't Give A Stuff What You Do. I'm Paid To Write What I Think'
, she jokingly wrote that it had had the effect of reducing her readership to three. But when an article penned by a professional comedian employs such pointed rhetoric along the lines of "Insecure or conservative or stupid women are bowing to the wishes of their husbands
", can she truly claim surprise at the level of vitriol her article generated or is this simply a case of an opinion writer trying to get opinions?
posted by Second Account For Making Jokey Comments
on Sep 19, 2007 -
Their view is that psyops can be directed toward global transregional audiences.
My view is that that’s not possible because it directs psyops against our own friends and allies and even at our own public. ... In Mind Games, Columbia Journalism Review thoroughly examines the disintegrating lines between Public Affairs, Psy-Ops, IO, the public, and the truth. Some old friends are mentioned too: the Lincoln Group
, the Rendon Group,
the Pentagon, our own media, and others. If truth is our greatest weapon, as Rumsfeld has said, how can the administration hope to prevail in an information war when it is not honest with itself?
posted by amberglow
on May 1, 2006 -
an example of Operation Homefront?
--this news report about a Reservist back from Iraq is apparently part of a new Pentagon propaganda operation
aimed at us. ...Did Diaz return to the U.S. on emergency leave with an agenda -- to offer a positive spin that could help counter growing concerns among Americans about the U.S. exit strategy? How do we know that's not his strategy, especially after he discloses that superior officers encouraged him to talk about his experiences in Iraq? ...
posted by amberglow
on Jan 4, 2006 -
Spengler of the Asia Times.
Right-headed, wrong-headed, at times off-headed, but always interesting. You can spend a lot of time wading through the archives. The fellow, anonymous for whatever reason, has written on US/China trade
, Ratzinger as a dark age theologian
, the American empire
, how Europe might be re-Christianized
, US vs Islam
, religion vs philosphy
, Tolkien vs Wagner
, internet stocks
, and anti-semitism
. A bit of something for everyone.
Also runs a lively little forum
posted by IndigoJones
on May 14, 2005 -
Don't believe the hype
Debunking the so-called genius of Prince, The Sopranos and 'Blade Runner'. Amusingly harsh yet convincing cases all round. Can I add 'Goodfellas' to the list? Never has so much been written about a film so lacking. I prefered 'Casino'.
posted by feelinglistless
on Dec 4, 2004 -
Voice of a Superpower
--Foreign Policy magazine puts together an interview with John & Jane Q. Public on us, the world, terror, and stuff--based on our responses to public-opinion polls from a wide variety of sources.
posted by amberglow
on Jun 7, 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 -
When all dot-com companies
existed in full power (late 90's), none of us could actually use
them (because of our lazy dial-up modems), now that we could use them they don't exist. "Which leads me to think that there might be another dot-com flourishing just around the corner." Is Moby right
posted by nandop
on Aug 28, 2003 -
MJ pro-tech, anti-jail:
"I am speechless about the idea of putting music fans -- mostly teenagers -- in jail for downloading music," he said in a statement from his Neverland Ranch in the western state of California.
"It is wrong to illegally download, but the answer cannot be jail. Here in America we create new opportunities out of adversity, not punitive laws, and we should look to new technologies ... for solutions. This way, innovation continues to be the hallmark of America. It is the fans that drive the success of the music."
posted by allaboutgeorge
on Jul 22, 2003 -
Nelson Mandela calls it like he sees it: the United States of America is a threat to world peace... Dick Cheney [and Donald] Rumsfeld...are dinosaurs, who do not want [President Bush] to belong to the modern age.
His arguments are well made. But is the power of his historical perspective undermined by his forays into oversimplified racial analysis?
posted by alms
on Sep 10, 2002 -