This review of Gusher Of Lies makes me wonder whether the bad arguments are the book’s or the reviewer’s. For example, Bryce’s attacks on ethanol seem very convincing, but in what way do they challenge “cherished green beliefs?” This is djw’s department, but it seems to me that the class of people pushing ethanol contains a rather higher percentage of “corn-growing interests and their political representatives” than “environmentalists.” Then there’s this:
Wind power and solar power have the added drawback of being intermittent and unpredictable. A town that relied entirely on solar or wind power would suffer constant service interruptions and wild fluctuations in output, which is why both technologies must be used in conjunction with traditional fossil-fuel generators.
You don’t say! One hopes that it’s Grimes and not Bryce who considers identifying the fact that wind and sunlight are not constants as potential problems in using them to generate power a monumental insight.
Since I really, really Don’t Get Garrison Keillor, at least I can say that I don’t find this disillusioning. (I mean, given the esteem with which his wit is inexplicably held in many quarters, shouldn’t his attempt at homophobic humor at least involve some stereotypes that wouldn’t have stood out as stale cliches at a Dean Martin Celebrity Roast in 1971?)
Yglesias on Abe Foxman giving a pass to the anti-Semitic, anti-Catholic, anti-gay, all-purpose nut whose endorsement John McCain assiduously sought out: “What does Foxman have to say about all this Hageean nuttiness? He thinks it’s just fine since Hagee’s pro-Israel. Obviously, we’re not supposed to give too much scrutiny to the content of Hagee’s “pro-Israel” views since in an ordinary sense deliberately seeking the destruction of the Jewish state and the deaths of all its citizens wouldn’t be considered an especially pro-Israel stance.”
As befits a group full of social maladjusts, the blogosphere has turned out some good stuff on the passing of E. Gary Gygax. Jason Sigger has a good round-up and a nice tribute here. Russell Arben Fox also has a nice remembrance. A friend forwarded this article from two years ago, written by Paul La Farge, who traveled to Lake Geneva in order to play D&D with Gygax. And of course Rich Burlew does characteristically good work here.
According to new numbers released by Survey USA today, both Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama win in match-ups against McCain. Obama wins by more (and wins 4 more states than Clinton); the numbers suggest he loses Pennsylvania and New Jersey, wins Virginia, Ohio, Nevada, New Mexico, and Colorado. The numbers show that Clinton wins Pennsylvania and Ohio too, but loses the pacific northwest.
Not sure how much to trust these numbers (if at all)…but still. A bit reassuring, I guess.
We thought that Chronicle readers would have their own ideas about how that building should be designed, and we invited people to send in designs on the backs of envelopes. About 120 people sent in sketches that were good, bad, serious, humorous, abstract, or really angry. Their designs took the form of toilets, bunkers, crosses, and W’s, some crudely drawn and some very elegant.
The finalists are pretty great, but I think this one was my favorite:
1. The WMD Stockpile of Manufactured Evidence Library
2. The “Big Oil” Hall
3. The Telecommunications “Listening” Lounge
4. The “We Do Not Torture” Torture Viewing Theater.
I can’t draw, but here’s my belated contribution:
Michael Graham at the Boston Herald has his panties in a bunch over Harvard’s decision to create a women-only hour in the school’s gym, so that Muslim women can exercise comfortably and in keeping with the rules of modesty imposed by Sharia. He calls discrimination against those poor Harvard boys who have been sidelined by the school’s decision. Woe is them!
Now, here’s the thing. I’ll admit my ambivalence (to put it mildly) about religious edicts (of ANY faith) that require women’s “modesty” while usually allowing men to traipse all over town. But, aside from the fact that we live in a pluralistic society that should accommodate many faiths, using this as an excuse to decry, oh, everything Harvard has ever done to encourage dialogue with Muslim students and world leaders is just bull.
I’m told by a Boston-native that the Herald is beantown’s version of the NY Post. Graham certainly proved it today.
Barney Miller vs. Cedric Daniels?
Dahlia Lithwick infers them:
1. It’s not sexism if it’s women trashing women.
2. Writing by women about women need not be held to the same critical or analytical standards as writing by men because—I suppose—we really are as stupid as Allen suggests.
3. No need for originality in pieces by women about women. Oprah, Celine, and Grey’s Anatomy never get old. Good times.
4. When all else fails, say the piece was meant to be funny. Then you can say that anyone who didn’t like it has no sense of humor.
5. Laugh all the way to the bank.
This is very smart, so maybe John Pomfret will mistake her for a man and give her an op-ed job with an assignment to write about a topic besides why Women Are Teh Stupid. (Or, as I’m sure she’d prefer, the Times will give her Greenhouse’s job when it comes open, but I’d miss the snark.)