Author Archives: reflectionephemeral

What US Politics Is About

DougJ writes: What’s most frustrating about reading American political pundits is all the pretend bullshit about how people are motivated by Burkean pragmatism or fiscal restraint, when it’s really all about slavery and its aftermath. The only civil war ever … Continue reading

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Because Things Are As They Are, That Is How They Must Be

The unfortunately predominant flaw in today’s conservatism– an unreflective defense of the status quo and lashing out at bothersome facts– is perfectly illustrated by this gentleman’s silly little crusade: According to a guest speaker at this weekend’s Values Voters Summit … Continue reading

Posted in Football, History, News and Current Events, Politics, Sports | 1 Comment

“Emphasis is placed upon destruction”

An oft-overlooked component of the white man’s burden: burning lots of records. The full extent of the destruction of Britain’s colonial government records during the retreat from empire was disclosed on Thursday with the declassification of a small part of the Foreign … Continue reading

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Who Said It: Pope Francis, Or Bill de Blasio?

I started strong on this quiz, but only finished 6/10.

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Lesson: Hurricanes Abroad Don’t Foment Resentment

Interesting editorial judgment:

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Image Is Everything

Alex Pareene read the news today, oh boy: Wow, is it “Paul Ryan is a serious, brilliant, policy-focused wonk with a dynamic and inclusive vision for the future of the Republican Party” season again already? It comes earlier every year. … Continue reading

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Raucous Debate

Funny stuff: “If Iran is serious, why not end this whole affair with an agreement instead of by force?” [Former Israel prime minister Ehud] Olmert said. “Perhaps we will reach the conclusion that nothing else worked, but we owe it to … Continue reading

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The International George

We’ve talked about the breakdown of the divide between the discourse of GOP elites and the most fevered ramblings of the most transparently delusional/grifting right-wing talk show personalities. Tough to get a better example than this: Next week, former President … Continue reading

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Big Picture On Obamacare

Richard Mayhew has been examining the problems with the ACA website and enrollment. In a recent post, he concludes: The original plan for PPACA was to have forty to forty five state exchanges and a few small states piggybacking on … Continue reading

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Poverty And Inequality In The US

More details and charts at the link on how the US is an outlier, in the wealthy world, in poverty and inequality. I wonder what on earth is the story in Japan:

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Explaining Away Bad News

Rob Ford shows how it’s done: Toronto Mayor Rob Ford, facing mounting calls to resign after police said they found a video of him in which he appeared to be smoking crack cocaine, said on Tuesday for the first time … Continue reading

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Douthat On The Future Of Pot

I’d take the “worst case” scenario Ross Douthat tries to sketch out here, easily, over the status quo, but it’s worth thinking about Douthat’s comparison of casinos and pot legalization: With marijuana, as I said in the column, I’m a … Continue reading

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American Politics Summed Up In One Chart

Polling is on whether it’s acceptable to wear blackface at Halloween. [late add to make the post make sense] Via. More serious examination of the state of US politics here.

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Proposed Baseball Rule Changes

Joe Posnanski writes about what might happen if baseball season were 16 games, played once a week:

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A Different World Than Where You Come From

For those of us who grew up in the ’80s & ’90s (and, well, any time), this is hard to fathom: If you are 12 years old in Boston you've seen 3 Red Sox titles, 3 Pats Super Bowls, 1 … Continue reading

Posted in News and Current Events | 6 Comments

Republicans’ “Breathtakingly Cynical” Health Insurance Antics

Mild-mannered health care policy expert Jonathan Cohn is taken aback at the cynicism of the GOP’s professed upset that insurers are opting to cancel some health insurance plans: Republicans have repeatedly endorsed proposals that would take insurance away from many … Continue reading

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Epiphany

So I originally came across this Todd Rundgren song on Pandora about seven years ago. I’ve listened to it dozens of times or more, but until I heard this Big Star cover this morning, I’d never understood the chorus– turns … Continue reading

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The News Is Bad News For Democrats

Chuck Todd et al offered these policy-free points on the botched healthcare.gov rollout on Thursday: *** The website woes — a replay of the BP spill or the first presidential debate? To us, this entire website story is going to turn out … Continue reading

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