Archive

  • Site Stuff

    So...still problems, I take it? I'm corresponding with Typepad about what's going on, but they're not necessarily being too helpful. At least not yet. In comments, a lot of you are noticing bits of code that seem problematic. I didn't write the code and don't really know what to do with it. Shakespeare's Sister kindly did the work, but she's not a professional coder either. If any of you guys are professionals and feel like you could hunt around under the hood and clear up the contradictions, problems, and issues, I'd love for you to give it a try. The whole college thing makes me decidedly not rich, but I'll happily send someone $25 or $50 to blow at Amazon if they're willing to help out. So if you are an experienced coder willing to help me on the cheap, shoot me an e-mail .
  • Kerry 08 Can Wait

    James Joyner gets Kerry's problem right : Clinton has shrewdly focused on her Senate duties first, not only building chits within her party but demonstrating that she was more than a show pony. Kerry would be wise to do the same if he wants another shot at the brass ring. Kerry's problems, unfortunately, are innate. His every action comes across as that of a striver, a comer, an opportunist. It's not just that he lacks the effortless ascendence of yesteryear's wasp's and aristocrats, but he's also missing the self-evident social consciousness that distinguishes do-gooders. So when our inboxes fill up with his proposals to extend health care to the young or increase military pay, they seem less the ideas of a committed reformer and more a pre-plotted path Kerry's hoping will lead him to the White House. That's not his fault, at least in a conscious sense. I've no doubt Kerry does care for children, veterans, and society's least and needy, but his pre-2004 lack of distinguishing...
  • Protecting Predators

    Doesn't this sound more like a Saturday Night Live, or, in fact, MAD TV skit than an actual strategy tried out on the floor of Congress? About a week ago, the House Judiciary Committee was prepared to approve the Child Interstate Abortion Notification Act. Dem committee members offered some fairly reasonable amendments to shield some parties from criminal responsibility...For example, one amendment, offered by Rep. Bobby Scott (D-Va.), sought to exempt “cab drivers, bus drivers and others in the business transportation profession from the criminal provisions in the bill.” So, if an underage woman takes a bus to another state to have an abortion, the bus driver, who probably wouldn’t have any knowledge of the abortion, couldn’t be charged with a federal crime. Judiciary Committee Chairman James Sensenbrenner (R-Wis.) not only helped kill the amendment, he decided to rephrase it for the official record: "Mr. Scott offered an amendment that would have exempted sexual predators from...
  • Crying Wolf

    In Krugman's otherwise good article on bargaining for pharmaceuticals, he makes a really poor argument on a really important point: Needless to say, apologists for the law insist that the prohibition on price negotiations had nothing to do with catering to special interests - that it was a matter of principle, of preserving incentives to innovate. How can we refute this defense? One way is to challenge claims that the pharmaceutical industry needs high prices to innovate. In her book "The Truth About the Drug Companies," Marcia Angell, the former editor in chief of The New England Journal of Medicine, shows convincingly that drug companies spend far more on marketing than they do on research - and that much of the marketing is designed to sell "me, too" drugs, which are no better than the cheaper drugs they replace. It should be possible to pay less for medicine, yet encourage more real innovation. Sigh. That's not an important comparison, though. The drug companies are saying...
  • Now Testify!

    And DeLay's Repentance-palooza continues: "Just think of what we could accomplish if we checked our pride at the door, if collectively we all spent less time taking credit and more time deserving it," DeLay told the 54th annual National Day of Prayer gathering on Capitol Hill. "If we spent less time ducking responsibility and more time welcoming it. If we spent less time on our soapboxes and more time on our knees." DeLay drew appreciative smiles when he added, "For in God, all things are possible, ladies and gentlemen. And even greatness from lowly sinners like you and me -- especially me." Indeed it's true, greatness is quite possible from lowly sinners who trust in God. Whether your sin is a few decades of unethical politicking or a lifetime of drink and drugs, redemption can be found in The Lord. But what Tom's doing here is a bit different, he's finding redemption in The Leader. By making his wholesale invention and embrace of DeLayism into an issue of sin, he's tightly wrapping...
  • Maintenance

    Site may be down for a few minutes while Shakespeare's Sister and I perform some surgery on it. Thanks for the patience. Update : Well that did no good. Here's the deal: something's wrong with the domain. Somehow, it's still telling certain browsers -- though not all -- to access portions of the old template, resulting in a weird merge of old and new. It's not a cache problem as I've had folks clear their caches repeatedly. At the same time, it's not an html issue because the "test" site worked. So I tried importing all my archives into the test site and moving that site into this domain. The problem remained. Worse, the "old" site, which I'd moved to a different domain, no longer had any problems. That means something's happening when folks access this domain, and I have no idea what it is. If any web heads out there have a clue, I'd love to hear it. Otherwise, it's off to Typepad tech support I go. On a non-technical note, posting will remain normal, the site'll just be a little...
  • Design Stuff

    So I know we've got some problems. Shakespeare's Sister and I are going to sit down and figure it all out tonight. As it is, the posts on the site are still readable, so I'm going to keep the template as is and it'll just be a bit ugly till I fix it later. Beyond that, I know I need to: • Make the post titles bigger; • Make the miniblog's line spacing and font size smaller; • ? Anything else I could do to make the more readable and user friendly? Thanks for everybody's patience and support.
  • Wanted: Newt

    I've got to take issue with The Carpetbagger's read of Josh Green's piece in the latest Atlantic Monthly . Like the the Honorable Bagger, I like Josh Green. Also like the honorable Bagger, his piece did not exactly spur me to do cartwheels around the room. But the Carpetbagger's critique is simply a restatement of Green's thesis rendered as a criticism: Green's article attempts to argue that Democrats are faltering under the stewardship of Reid and Pelosi because, while they've been excellent parliamentary maneuverers and done much to stymie Bush's agenda, they've not done anything to repair the party's tattered public image. So while good at working Congress, they're terrible as public faces for the party. Green's right. Publicly, Democrats have no leader, no singular voice. While our elected officials are certainly under the command of much-improved tacticians, we're winning battles without changing hearts and minds (for evidence of this, go here or here ). Dean, who many thought...
  • Union Busting as a Side Dish

    Kevin writes : But the right wing never rests, and for any of my liberal readers who harbor suspicion of labor unions as an "old" liberal cause — just another one of those special interest groups that Democrats are always pandering to — ask yourself this: why are conservatives so hellbent on breaking them? Why did Ronald Reagan fire those air traffic controllers in 1981? Why did George Bush make union busting a key issue in the 2002 midterm election? Why the relentless opposition to using card checks to organize workers in new industries? Why the continuing demonization of unions from a party that's otherwise so conscientious about building its appeal to the working and middle classes? Italics mine. Kevin's right on the rest of it, but George didn't emphasize union busting in 2002. What he did was actually much worse: after opposing the Dept. of Homeland Security -- a Democratic proposal -- for seven or so months, he pivoted and supported it, with one minor change. In George W. Bush's...
  • Hot For Teachers

    Dave Eggers is writing, or has written, a new book. In a break with tradition, this one is light on the self-involvement and heavy on public school teachers. That's because this one is all about public school teachers. Campus Progress has a graphical excerpt from it tracking the day of a teacher vs. the day of a pharmaceutical rep. And while the deck's kinda stacked by comparing the married teacher with a single, mobile worker who'll obviously have long gaps of inactivity while driving between meetings, just reading about the instructor's schedule left me exhausted. Take a look.

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