ustoo Dead

Sites to see:

Almost Essential
From the Left
From the Right
Magazines and Journals
Various Weblogs and Pundits
Think Tanks
Vast Right Wing Conspiracy
Shrill Leftist Garbage


Monday, January 30, 2006

Great weeping and gnashing of teeth 

Unfogged is Dead; Long live Unfogged!

I really don't know what to say, but I feel like mourning.

-Ziggy Stardust  13:18 EST | |

Sunday, January 29, 2006


Saturday, January 28, 2006

I wanna be a demographer 

This site has maps of New York City that summarize by neighborhood things like poverty, household type, and race. Very interesting indeed.

A quick look makes it clear that households headed by females are much more likely to be mired in poverty than those headed by men. My conclusion: women are just plain lazy.

-Daddy Brooklyn  16:19 EST | |

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Look, a post! 

You might be addicted to politics.

"Any democrat will tell you the republicans ignore the facts. Any republican will tell you the democrats ignore the facts. Turns out they're right. A new study monitored brain activity of partisans; they shun logic and use emotional processing centers to justify their candidate's contradictory statements. 'With their minds made up, brain activity ceased in the areas that deal with negative emotions such as disgust. But activity spiked in the circuits involved in reward, a response similar to what addicts experience when they get a fix.'"

via /.

-Ben  22:03 EST | |

Sunday, January 22, 2006

Abortion and the Pundits 

After an especially silly couple of articles in today's op-ed page, Scott Lemieux offers--as usual--a compelling refutation.

-Ziggy Stardust  22:42 EST | |

Mulling over my options 

I don't want to take a bar exam prep course, mainly because Barbri, the biggest and best known company that does bar prep, costs a bunch of money ($2500). Most of my classmates will take the course that involves 6-8 weeks of daily four-hour classes, basically filling in outlines about black-letter law. Since I'll be working full-time (but only 9-5, basically), I'd have to take the evening (6-10pm) class and that'd consume the rest of the summer. Of course, I need to study for the bar regardless--'d be embarrassing beyond belief to fail--so my summer's pretty much shot regardless. Right now, I feel that the full prep course is overkill, but I really don't trust my self-discipline to study completely on my own (I'd buy the prep books from somebody who used them last year).

Any suggestions how I can precommit myself to studying without paying $2500 for the pleasure?

P.S. I may be missing out on an antitrust class action if I don't do Barbri.

-Ziggy Stardust  00:09 EST | |

Saturday, January 21, 2006


Back up your hard drives, dear readers. It may save some serious pangs of regret.

-Ziggy Stardust  21:48 EST | |

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

A clever ad 

Monday, January 16, 2006

Happy MLK Jr. Day! 

Alan Wolfe's 1998 review of the second volume Taylor Branch's biography of King, Pillars of Fire, is very good (hat tip: Ed Kilgore of TPM).

Taylor Branch was interviewed today by NPR. The third volume, Canaan's Edge will be released in a couple of weeks.

Lastly, the PBS special Citizen King is very good.

-Ziggy Stardust  17:45 EST | |

Friday, January 13, 2006

Steven Landsburg is a jerk 

Usually I don't read him because it just riles up my blood without making me think very hard. Thankfully, Daniel at Crooked Timber has a great tolerance for bullshit. Check it out.

-Ziggy Stardust  14:42 EST | |

Did I make the right choice? 

As many of you know, I am alegedly moving to DC on saturday. Theoretically, I could cancel this plan. I am little worried about the debt. Maybe it's just cold feet. I have to withdrawal from CUD today, so if anyone knows of any compelling reason why I shouldn't, please speak up.

-Miguel Sanchez  12:18 EST | |

Who's for the death penalty? 

Paul G. House was accused of murdering his next-door neighbor in 1986. The prosecution claimed that he had murdered her in the course of raping her, and introduced chemical evidence that his semen was found on her clothing. He was convicted and sentenced to death.

Now it turns out that DNA analysis shows that the semen was in fact that of the victim's husband. Paul House is still on death row. <>

All eight Republican-appointed judges from the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals who sat on the en banc hearing on House's habeas corpus petition voted to deny it; all seven Democratic-appointed judges voted to grant it, with six of them agreeing that he had in fact proven his innocence.

-Ben  04:15 EST | |

Thursday, January 12, 2006

What does it mean that more and more of my newspaper reading time goes to the Journal? 

No matter how much I may complain about the government taking 45% of bonus checks, I remain an unabashed big government liberal*. An article in the Journal, which I excerpt below because it's behind a subscription wall, made me think of another use for big government.

Like many big hospitals, the University of Utah Hospital carries a 30-day supply of drugs, in part because it would be too costly or wasteful to stockpile more. Some of its hepatitis vaccine supply has been diverted to the hurricane-ravaged Gulf, leaving it vulnerable should an outbreak occur closer to home. About 77 other drugs are in short supply because of manufacturing and other glitches, such as a drug maker shutting down a factory.

"The supply chain is horribly thin," says Erin Fox, a drug-information specialist at the Salt Lake City hospital.

In the event of a pandemic flu outbreak, that chain is almost certain to break. Thousands of drug-company workers in the U.S. and elsewhere could be sickened, prompting factories to close. Truck routes could be blocked and borders may be closed, particularly perilous at a time when 80% of raw materials for U.S. drugs come from abroad. The likely result: shortages of important medicines -- such as insulin, blood products or the anesthetics used in surgery -- quite apart from any shortages of medicine to treat the flu itself.

The very rules of capitalism that make the U.S. an ultra-efficient marketplace also make it exceptionally vulnerable in a pandemic. Near-empty warehouses are a sign of strong inventory management. Production of drugs takes place offshore because that's cheaper. The federal government doesn't intervene as a guaranteed buyer of flu drugs, as it does with weapons. Investors and tax rules conspire to eliminate redundancy and reserves. Antitrust rules prevent private companies from collaborating to speed development of new drugs.

Most fundamentally, the widely embraced "just-in-time" business practice -- which attempts to cut costs and improve quality by reducing inventory stockpiles and delivering products as needed -- is at odds with the logic of "just in case" that promotes stockpiling drugs, government intervention and overall preparedness.
And it only gets scarier as you read more.

*If I had a t-shirt that said, "Big Government Liberal", I would wear it.

-Daddy Brooklyn  21:14 EST | |

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

I Have No Idea What To Make of This 

But it is unquestionably a work of genius.

-Fuzzy Dunlop  15:19 EST | |

Sunday, January 08, 2006

The real cause of poverty 

This was a letter to the editor (1/6) in my hometown newspaper:

Poor are often responsible for their circumstances

David Bamberger was right that it is hard to see one person living in poverty from the top of Pikes Peak ("Those who live in poverty often hard for us to see," Other Voices, Jan. 1). But when you come down to street-level, the picture becomes a little clearer.

In my 75 years I have met quite a few poor people. I have yet to meet a single one who did not materially contribute to his own poverty, usually by coasting through school or dropping out instead of studying hard and taking subjects that would be useful in earning a living.

Poor people also have a tendency to spend every nickel. They don't put their money to work in good investments. Don't tell me they have no money to invest. I see many of them who have money to buy cigarettes, and a distressing number even find money to buy booze and dope. In my personal experience, most people in poverty are volunteers for their own poverty.

No one in this wonderful country has to remain poor forever. In fact, two studies that I know of show that over a decade or two, more people in the poverty bracket move to the top income bracket than the number who remain in poverty.

What most poor people need is a good swift kick in the butt to get them to make the right decisions. What they don't need is people with ideas to eliminate any of their personal responsibility to perform, and to accept responsibility for their total support. When underachievers get all their needs provided for free, you'll have a system set in concrete. If you don’t believe this, take a look at welfare costs before and after LBJ's War on Poverty was enacted in 1964.

Warren Langley

Colorado Springs

-Daddy Brooklyn  19:11 EST | |

Friday, January 06, 2006

Smokeback Mountain 

About us:

This weblog is an ongoing, if periodic, effort by several friends to stay in touch, in reading material, and in ideas.

Lucky Luciano is a former Italian Stallion real estate hustler and Benedict Arnold CEO turned shady lawyer-to-be. He lives in Denver.

Ben is a Paramedic and would-be philantropist who lives in Denver. He knows everything about nothing.

Fuzzy Dunlop lives in Manhattan. He is more than capable of standing up to the stresses of a high crime urban environment.

Jess is a teacher. But have YOU given her an apple? No, you haven't. You should be ashamed of yourself. This crazy feminist currently rests her copy of Awakening in Jersey City.

Matt is a pariah, iconoclast, and professor of gambling living in Oakland.

Miguel Sanchez is not Lionel Hutz.

Daddy Brooklyn lives in Brooklyn. He hates Republicans, though he wouldn't mind being ensconced in the landed elite of New York City.

Paul just smoked my eyelids and punched my cigarette.

Ziggy Stardust has no past.

Powered by Blogger eXTReMe Tracker Weblog Commenting by