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Users that often use this tag:
kliuless (11)
zarq (10)
amberglow (7)
davidjmcgee (2)
Ambrosia Voyeur (2)
divabat (2)
netbros (2)
KevinSkomsvold (2)
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Why value the donations of rich people more than those of the poor?

How Private Is 'Private Charity'? Private charity may be more accurately described as "private donations coupled with involuntary, tax-financed public subsidies." And it's not fair: "very low-income people paying only payroll taxes get hardly any leverage for their donations. Very high-income people in states with high income-tax rates – such as New Jersey and New York – can through the tax code virtually double the money funneled to a charity per dollar of their own sacrifice." (previously)
posted by kliuless on Jan 17, 2011 - 39 comments

Defense firms lure retired generals

From the Pentagon to the private sector - In large numbers, and with few rules, retiring generals are taking lucrative defense-firm jobs [more inside]
posted by kliuless on Jan 10, 2011 - 56 comments

The Intelli-Audio Revolution

Shows like This American Life, All Things Considered, and similar stalwarts of Public Radio in the UK, Australia, and Canada have combined with the explosion of podcastery to inspire hordes of (fantastic) imitators. The result? An irresistable smorgasbord of intellectual content. Bill Mckibben examines the history of the trend, and how it can be maintained. [more inside]
posted by mreleganza on Oct 26, 2010 - 36 comments

“... like a killer whale born in captivity in SeaWorld."

"The Man Who Never Was." Vanity Fair editor Todd S. Purdum follows up his 2007 profile of then-Senator John McCain and a scathing 2009 profile of Sarah Palin by asking whether McCain, "...the leader so many Americans admired — and so many journalists covered — ever truly existed." (Previously)
posted by zarq on Oct 7, 2010 - 49 comments

Dark. Gloomy. Creepy. Claustrophobic.

Other than its former residents, few mourn the demolition of San Francisco's Transbay Terminal.
posted by Chinese Jet Pilot on Aug 4, 2010 - 39 comments

American railways

High-speed railroading
America's system of rail freight is the world's best. High-speed passenger trains could ruin it [more inside]
posted by kliuless on Jul 31, 2010 - 81 comments

Caring with cash

Shared social responsibility - When customers could pay what they wanted in the knowledge that half of that would go to charity, sales and profits went through the roof ... Gneezy describes the combination of charitable donations and paying what you like as 'shared social responsibility', where businesses and customers work together for the public good. (via mr) [also see 1,2,3]
posted by kliuless on Jul 28, 2010 - 19 comments

Default Setting

The Government Accountability Office discovered that "23% [of for-profit university graduates] default [on their student loans] after four years compared to fewer than 10% of public-university grads." Unless for-profit universities can prove at least 45% of their students repay their debts (one among a number of benchmarks,) said universities may lose federal funding.
posted by griphus on Jul 23, 2010 - 72 comments

mutuelles des fraudeurs

Paris Metro's cheaters say solidarity is the ticket. Scofflaws who jump the turnstiles or enter through the exits of the Paris public transit system have formed mutuelles des fraudeurs — insurance funds that pay the fine if they get caught.
posted by hat on Jun 23, 2010 - 67 comments

The Viewer As Voyeur

Exposed: Voyeurism, Surveillance and the Camera is an exhibition at the Tate Modern in London which examines voyeurism through the medium of photography. In addition to works from professionals such as Brassaï, Henri Cartier-Bresson, Lee Miller, Shizuka Yokomizo, Guy Bourdin, Nan Goldin and Robert Mapplethorpe, it includes amateur and CCTV "stolen" images taken both with and without the knowledge of their subjects -- all intended to "explore the uneasy relationship between making and viewing images that deliberately cross lines of privacy and propriety." [more inside]
posted by zarq on Jun 15, 2010 - 7 comments

Reading (and Typing) in Public

Last August (2009), the "ephemeral artists" of Nothing Happened Here staged a mobile public reading event, meandering around the town of San Luis Obispo, CA with The Reading Chair, and a group of folks reading a variety of stories, poems and tales. The group has planned Typing in Public to take place tomorrow (May 15, 2010), in the same little town. The event is primarily focused on people writing on typewriters around town, but people can also share comments via Twitter, Flickr, or texting the event coordinators. To spark some inspiration, the group has received submissions from a variety of people, including Gerald Casale for Devo, Paul Frommer writing in Na'vi (with translation to English), Dr. James J. Duderstadt, President Emeritus, University Professor of Science and Engineering at the University of Michigan, writing on the library as the poster child of the it revolution, and plenty more. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief on May 14, 2010 - 8 comments

Ain't no grave, can hold my body down

The Johnny Cash Project : animating the music video for Ain't No Grave with frame-by-frame contributions from visitors. Draw your own too.
posted by divabat on Apr 16, 2010 - 10 comments

Detroit: Worst Test Score Ever

The results of the recent National Assessment of Education Progress (NEAP) tests are in. Detroit students posted the worst math scores ever in the history of the test. [more inside]
posted by Acromion on Dec 11, 2009 - 68 comments

Getting burned by packing heat

Does carrying a gun protect you from physical harm? Research by epidemiologists at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine suggests that carrying a gun makes one 4.5 times more likely to be shot in an assault, than someone not possessing a gun. Resisting increases one's odds of suffering harm even greater. [more inside]
posted by Blazecock Pileon on Oct 20, 2009 - 290 comments

Bike vs. Cars War

In light of the recent tragic death of a cyclist in Toronto, even normally well-balanced MeFites have polarized in the bikes vs. cars war”. But according to Guillermo Penalosa, the fight is really about better urban design. He helped to radically reinvent the transit and parks infrastructure of Bogata, making it of the best cycling cities in the world. The recent changes to Broadway in New York were influenced by Bogota's success. Gil now advises the Project for Public Spaces and is Executive Director of Walk & Bike for Life. Their solution to the pedestrians vs. cars vs. bikes battle is simple: better urban planning (previously on MeFi) that gives everyone their own safe space. Not sure if your city's infrastructure is up-to-snuff? Apply the 8/80 rule. In the meantime, keep safe out there.
posted by nometa on Sep 3, 2009 - 175 comments

Don't Blame Me, Kodos Told Me He Would've Vaporized Aetna

The Obama administration signaled today it is ready to entirely abandon the public option, i.e. giving Americans the choice of government-run health insurance (AP, Daily Kos, Politico, Hill). Further, HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius indicated that end-of-life counseling was "probably off the table", presumably due to Republican "death panel" commentary.
posted by WCityMike on Aug 16, 2009 - 491 comments

Scientific literacy.

Americans like science. But they think much less highly of American scientists than American scientists themselves do. Most scientists also rate media coverage of science as only fair or poor. Yet public knowledge of some scientific facts is .... not that bad (Section 7). A Pew Research Report reveals all.
posted by binturong on Jul 13, 2009 - 38 comments

Huh. Kinda reminds me of that guy in Casino Royale.

Bleeding billboard. Yeah, that's what I said.
posted by miss lynnster on Jul 7, 2009 - 38 comments

Mother Courage and her Infuseion

The Medill School of Journalism's Washington Program revealed its Pentagon Travel project last week (multimedia). Most privately paid for travel was found to be within the bounds of federal law, but some still show a clear conflict of interest. Key findings: From 1998 through 2007, sources outside the federal government paid for more than 22,000 trips worth at least $26 million. The medical industry paid for more travel than any other outside interest — more than $10 million for some 8,700 trips, or about 40 percent of all outside sponsored travel. Among the targets: military pharmacists, doctors, and others who administer the Pentagon’s $6 billion-plus annual budget for prescription drugs. Medill acquired 10 years worth of trip data and partnered with the Center for Public Integrity to form a searchable database which includes destination, date, sponsor, sponsor nationality, cost of trip or agency.
posted by Smedleyman on Jun 16, 2009 - 3 comments

Making Policy Public

Urban Omnibus is an online project of the Architectural League that explores the relationship between design and New York City's physical environment. They are featuring Making Policy Public, a program of The Center for Urban Pedagogy, through their articles about Vendor Power and Predatory Equity. [more inside]
posted by netbros on May 31, 2009 - 3 comments

A Broken Trust: Lessons from the Vaccine–Autism Wars

Researchers long ago rejected the theory that vaccines cause autism, yet many parents don't believe them. Can scientists bridge the gap between evidence and doubt? A five-thousand-word article, via Danny Yee.
posted by cgc373 on May 30, 2009 - 282 comments

Fight the Power Turns Twenty

1989, The Number. Public Enemy's anthem Fight The Power turns twenty.
posted by Burhanistan on May 21, 2009 - 65 comments

Public Service Announcements

Growing up, Public Service Announcements were part of my Saturday morning cartoon TV experience. [more inside]
posted by Oriole Adams on Apr 30, 2009 - 25 comments

Twenty Times a Day

...the Department of Transportation will not keep secret the data we collect on birds striking airplanes. - Ray LaHood, United States Secretary of Transportation
From the dreaded mourning dove to the nefarious Canada goose to the humble armadillo, the FAA's recently released National Wildlife Strike Database ON-LINE contains information on aircraft/wildlife strikes from over 100,000 reported incidents between 1990 and 2008. [more inside]
posted by shoesfullofdust on Apr 24, 2009 - 11 comments

How to Love Golden Age Comics

How to Kick a Person in the Teeth | How to Contemplate the Back of Your Pate | How to Eat Beans Without Soiling Your Jeans | How to Get Your Beard Sheared | How to Sharpen Your Wits | How to Block a BackSlapper's Sock | How to Grope for Bathtub Soap | How to Eat Crackers in Bed | How to See TV | How to Keep a Cool Conk | How to Double Your Bubble Gum Bubble | How (Not) to Reel on a Banana Peel | How to Tweak a Beak | How to Fall on Your Face | How to Laugh at a Bum Joke
...and many more hilarious how-tos from Basil Wolverton's Culture Corner. [more inside]
posted by carsonb on Apr 3, 2009 - 12 comments

The Wheels on the Bus Dial 206...

Seattle bus riders rejoice! From the Univ. of WA comes One Bus Away which answers the eternal public transit question "where the hell is my freaking bus??" With six flavors of awesome, you can get real-time bus arrival info. via phone, website, SMS, an iPhone-optimized webpage, or for those us still rocking the un-smart phones there's even a text-only webpage available.
posted by Smarson on Apr 2, 2009 - 42 comments

"Essentially, it is all about money and power."

"It would be naïve to identify the Internet with the Enlightenment. It has the potential to diffuse knowledge beyond anything imagined by Jefferson; but while it was being constructed, link by hyperlink, commercial interests did not sit idly on the sidelines. They want to control the game, to take it over, to own it. They compete among themselves, of course, but so ferociously that they kill each other off. Their struggle for survival is leading toward an oligopoly; and whoever may win, the victory could mean a defeat for the public good. ...We could have created a National Digital Library—the twenty-first-century equivalent of the Library of Alexandria. It is too late now. Not only have we failed to realize that possibility, but, even worse, we are allowing a question of public policy—the control of access to information—to be determined by private lawsuit."—Robert Darnton on what the proposed Google Book Settlement could mean for the pursuit of knowledge—Google and the Future of Books
posted by Toekneesan on Jan 23, 2009 - 44 comments

Frozen Scandal

"Scandal is our growth industry. Revelation of wrongdoing leads not to definitive investigation, punishment, and expiation but to more scandal. Permanent scandal. Frozen scandal." [Via]
posted by homunculus on Nov 24, 2008 - 14 comments

The miracle that is public access television

In 1984, the Cable Franchise Policy and Communications Act (along with legislation dating back to the 70s) forced cable companies to create public access television. Thanks to this foresighted policy, we can all now enjoy programming that might never have existed otherwise. Case in point: Los Angeles's Junior Christian Science Bible Lesson Show. Many more examples inside (some videos NSFW). [more inside]
posted by Astro Zombie on Nov 17, 2008 - 24 comments

Do you like this post? a)Yes b)Of course c)How could I not? d)Maybe

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 - 40 comments

Personal Genome Project

Volunteers from the general public working together with researchers to advance personal genomics. 10 volunteers, among them noted author and cognitive psychologist Stephen Pinker, have open sourced (so to speak) their genetic information. [more inside]
posted by thatbrunette on Oct 20, 2008 - 13 comments

So Open it Hurts.

So Open it Hurts. Web 2.0 visionaries Tara Hunt and Chris Messina blogged and twittered about their romance to all of geekdom as if it were one of their utopian open-source projects. Sharing their breakup has been a lot harder. [more inside]
posted by chunking express on Jul 29, 2008 - 53 comments

LibraryVenture!

Mazes and Monsters? Dungeons and Dragons? Faugh! When the Earth's very history is at stake, it's time for Tomes and Talismans! Learn the Dewey Decimal System and other library skills with Ms. Bookhart, a librarian cryogenically preserved from the 1980's and revived by The Users to save the books of Future Earth from technology-destroying race of alien beings, The Wipers. 260 of the geekiest minutes ever committed to video.
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur on Jul 25, 2008 - 15 comments

Go Superlambanana, go.

Superlambananas are creatures about the size of a cow which have recently been herded through Liverpool and beyond, and been photographed all over the place. One particularly animated beast has recently escaped and its owners are looking for information to aid its re-capture, though its larger ancestor is still in place (for now).
posted by feelinglistless on Jul 25, 2008 - 42 comments

the tail wagging the dog

webofdeception.com is a bizarre, timecubesque linkdump maintained and updated by private investigator and domain squatter Joseph Culligan. In addition to sleazy dirt-digging on various celebrities and politicians, Culligan also includes a huge resource list of links to databases and public-record searches. [more inside]
posted by sergeant sandwich on Jun 29, 2008 - 14 comments

NYC Waterfalls

NYC Waterfalls -- On June 26th, four waterfalls will go up around New York City. Designed by Olafur Eliasson and paid for, in part, by the Public Art Fund. Rendering of what they will look like here.
posted by brooklynexperiment on Jun 16, 2008 - 24 comments

Public Relations

Show me a PR person who is "accurate" and "truthful," and I'll show you a PR person who is unemployed. In The Wake Of Scott McClellan's New Book, CBS Legal Analyst Andrew Cohen Says PR People Are Aghast At The Truth. Includes a follow-up to the mountain of reactions he received.
posted by thisisdrew on Jun 2, 2008 - 71 comments

Socially unacceptable addictions, government encouraged addictions.

When the working poor turn to addictive drugs to manage pain so they can keep working, that's "moral weakness, not a public health problem.":
Every morning before sunup, Trapp drives 120 miles.... "This methadone makes you feel like a human being again," Trapp says. With disability rates as high as 37 percent in coal-mining areas such as Buchanan County, the region has many people with long-term pain management needs. As is the case with lots of aging miners, Trapp's addiction to pills began in a doctor's office, not a back-alley drug deal.... The clinic's counseling staff members say that many patients need to be on some sort of drug to cope with severe, long-term pain and that methadone has made them functional. And for those who lack insurance or access to more personalized care, it is often the only affordable option.
[more inside]
posted by orthogonality on Jan 15, 2008 - 44 comments

TroutUnderground Battles for Your River Access

The U.S. Supreme Court has held that the bed and banks under all rivers, lakes, and streams that are navigable, for title purposes, are owned by the states, held in trust for the public. Mineral extraction interests and other parties often challenge this 'public use' designation by using/abusing the navigabilty designation to keep out fisherman and other recreational users in order to exploit the rivers for private gain. The Upper Sacramento River and McCloud Rivers of Northern California are the latest battleground in recreational river access. In what has become all too common, an ugly fight pitting sportsmen and nature enthusiasts against private interests is unfolding. One blogger has led the good fight to keep the rivers public. He could use your help... but it doesn't look good, and there is not much time!
posted by james_cpi on Nov 9, 2007 - 10 comments

Curse of the Long Tail

Sorry PR, you're blocked. Chris Anderson, the editor-in-chief of Wired Magazine calls out the 300+ PR "professionals" who cannot be bothered to look for the right person to send their announcements to. Then, he publishes their e-mail addresses online, for all to see. If you were thinking of using a PR firm this year, here are 300 that you might want to give a miss. via
posted by parmanparman on Oct 30, 2007 - 49 comments

What year is this?

On December 8th, pretend to be a time traveller.
posted by divabat on Sep 27, 2007 - 49 comments

Brian Dewan's Campaign Songs

Brian Dewan, "The Vice Principal of Rock," sings a selection of campaign songs... because zither is the last word in rock this campaign season. Hearken! (previously)
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur on Jun 27, 2007 - 9 comments

public assets and infrastructure go private--and we pay

Roads To Riches (or We've Got a Bridge in Brooklyn to Sell You--Seriously) -- Why investors are clamoring to take over America's highways, bridges, and airports—and why the public should be nervous.--...a slew of Wall Street firms—Goldman, Morgan Stanley, the Carlyle Group, Citigroup, and many others—is piling into infrastructure ... Assets sold now could change hands many times over the next 50 years, with each new buyer feeling increasing pressure to make the deal work financially. It's hardly a stretch to imagine service suffering in such a scenario; already, the record in the U.S. has been spotty. ...
posted by amberglow on Apr 29, 2007 - 107 comments

Public domain books published 1923-1963

Stanford's new Copyright Renewal Database makes searchable the copyright renewal records of books published from 1923-1963, previously very difficult to do. Between those dates, a renewal registration was required to prevent the expiration of copyright, so books not renewed are now in the public domain. Publishing scanned books on Internet Archive.
posted by stbalbach on Apr 6, 2007 - 3 comments

Yenshui Fireworks Festival

The annual fireworks festival at the town of YenShui in southern Taiwan is notable for many reasons, notwithstanding the extreme danger to the many participants (youtube link). Large “beehive” structures created by the townspeople each contain hundreds of rockets which are launched into the crowd. (youtube link). The ubiqui-pedia link is here
posted by mattoxic on Mar 7, 2007 - 9 comments

Images in the Public Domain

A list of sites with public domain images was just posted by a DailyKos user and seems very useful.
posted by brookeb on Jan 20, 2007 - 20 comments

"a wonderful teacher", says the Superintendent

"you belong in Hell" --that's the message being taught in Kearny, NJ, History teacher David Paszkiewicz's classes. ... At first Paszkiewicz denied he mixed in religion with his history lesson and the adults in the room appeared to be buying it, LaClair said. But then LaClair reached into his backpack and produced the CDs. At that point Paszkiewicz remarked, according to LaClair, "Maybe you're an atheist. ... (more here, including a link to some audio of it all)
posted by amberglow on Nov 15, 2006 - 84 comments

“We choose not to work for homosexuals.”

“Treating you with respect and honesty are the cornerstones of our reputation.” --unless you're gay, that is, for a Houston landscaper. Step 1: Turn down 2 gay customers. Step 2: Watch furor ensue. Step 3: Profit (to the tune of $40,000 in new business)
posted by amberglow on Nov 11, 2006 - 141 comments

Beautiful NYC Women – Video Site

I Do Nothing All Day - The guys at idonothingallday.com (perhaps NSFW) do a great job of capturing the simple act of admiring a beautiful woman passing you by while walking around on the streets of NYC. Some of the smiles can really lighten up your day. My particular favorites here, and here. Most of the videos are embedded Quicktime with a few recent Flash videos.
posted by Big Mike on Sep 18, 2006 - 156 comments

Urban Forest Project

Design Times Square: The Urban Forest Project "brings 185 banners created by the world’s most celebrated designers, artists, photographers and illustrators to New York’s Times Square. Each banner uses the form of the tree, or a metaphor for the tree, to make a powerful visual statement. Together they create a forest of thought-provoking images at one of the world’s busiest, most energetic, and emphatically urban intersections." Including work by Milton Glaser, the Walker Art Center, and many, many others. Via Speak Up.
posted by tpl1212 on Aug 29, 2006 - 9 comments

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