Tuesday, August 10, 2010


-8-10-10—After a dispute with a passenger who stood to fetch his luggage too soon on a full flight, [Jet Blue flight attendant Slater] got on the intercom, let loose a string of invective, pulled the lever that activates the emergency-evacuation chute and slid down, ... On his way out the door, he paused to grab a beer from the beverage cart. Then he ran to the employee parking lot and drove off...”—NYT A1

--A federal jury on Monday [in Arkansas] convicted a physician of conspiring to detonate a car bomb that badly injured the state medical board chairman. ... Prosecutors said the bombing was in retaliation after the board sanctioned Dr. Mann for overprescribing pain medication. NYT A11

Monday, August 9, 2010


8-7-2010—Greenspan calls for repeal of all the Bush tax cuts—NYTB1

--Those who served in military since September 2001 face unemployment rate of 11.8%

—Afghan guards staged a fake rocket attack in June on the site where a South Korean military base was under construction, in an apparent ruse to get more danger pay NYT A6

--In [the] 25 to 34 year old [group with a college degree] the US ranks [12th] behind Canada, South Korea, Russia, Japan, New Zealand, Ireland, Norway, Israel, France Belgium and Australia. That’s beyond pathetic.—Herbert NYT A15

Wednesday, August 4, 2010


-8-04-2010—The last three men nominated to the Supreme Court have all been married, and, among them, have seven children. The last three women—Elena Kagan, Sonia Sotomayor and Harriet Myers (who withdrew)—have all been single without children.—Leonhardt,NYT B1
--In a major push into the battered US commercial real-estate market, China’s $300 billion sovereign-wealth fund is in advanced talk with Harvard University’s endowment to buy its stakes in half a dozen US focused real estate funds for about $500 million... WSJ C1

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

update July/August 2010

--8-2-2010—“the mediocrity of Harvard undergraduate teaching is an open secret of the Ivy League.”—Hacker, HIGHER EDUCATION? Cited WSJ A11

--8-1-2010—Last February ... as a freak winter storm paralyzed much of the East Coast, relatives of Senator James M. Inhofe, the Oklahoma Republican who is a skeptic of climate change, came to Washington and erected an igloo.—NYT WK4

7,31,8,1/2010--...studios are cutting back on standard Hollywood fare like romantic comedies because foreign movie-goers often don’t find American jokes all that funny. WSJ A1

7-31-2010—It’s your choice, Mr. President ... To paraphrase the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., they can’t ride your back unless it’s bent.—Blow, NYT A15
7-31-2010—“[the corporate bosses] threw out far more workers and hours than they lost output, said Professor Sum. “Here’s what happened: At the end of the fourth quarter in 2008, you see corporate profits begin to really take off, and they give by the time you get to the first quart of 2010 by $572 billion. And over that same time period, wage and salary payments go down by $122 billion.” That kind of disconnect, said Mr. Sum, had never been seen before in all the decades since World War II.—Herbert, NYT A15

Thursday, July 29, 2010

the notes are coming due

Reuters) - The United States should alter policy to take account of China's role as a major player on the world stage if it wants to avoid friction and instability, a major state newspaper said on Thursday.

The commentary in ruling Communist Party mouthpiece the People's Daily followed the latest spat in Sino-U.S. ties, over what China views as unwarranted U.S. interference in a territorial dispute in the South China Sea.

While senior officials, including U.S. President Barack Obama, say they welcome a prosperous, flourishing China, good words must be backed up by actions, the newspaper said.

"If the United States cannot find a way of recognizing and accepting China's entrance on the world stage as a big player, relations will swerve up and down like a roller coaster," it said.

socialism or barbarism

7-29-2010--A recent report from the Congressional Research Service finds that the war on terror, including Afghanistan and Iraq, has been, by far, the costliest war in American history aside from World War II. It adjusted costs of all previous wars for inflation. ... it is President Obama who is now requesting 6.1 percent more in military spending than the peak of military spending under Mr. Bush....Under Mr. Obama, we are now spending more money on the military, after adjusting for inflation, than in the peak of the cold war, Vietnam War or Korean War. Our battle fleet is larger than the next 13 navies combined, according to Defense Secretary Robert Gates. The intelligence apparatus is so bloated that, according to The Washington Post, the number of people with “top secret” clearance is 1.5 times the population of the District of Columbia. Meanwhile, a sobering report from the College Board says that the United States, which used to lead the world in the proportion of young people with college degrees, has dropped to 12th. ... For the cost of just one soldier in Afghanistan for one year, we could start about 20 schools there. ...Mr. Mortenson lamented to me that for the cost of just 246 soldiers posted for one year, America could pay for a higher education plan for all Afghanistan. ...Faced with constant demands for more, Mr. Gates in May asked: “Is it a dire threat that by 2020 the United States will have only 20 times more advanced stealth fighters than China?” –Kristof, NYT
--FBI Director Robert Mueller told Congress on Wednesday that he does not know how many of his agents cheated on an important exam on the bureau’s policies ... that raised questions about whether the FBI knows its own rules for conducting surveillance on Americans.—SBT A4
--A new climate report confirms the Earth has been warming, with the past decade the hottest on record. WSJ A1
--Insured Americans are using fewer medical services, raising questions whether patients are consuming less health care as they pick ukp a greater share of the costs. WSJ A1

Wednesday, July 28, 2010


Things are so bad that Robert Blackwill, who was on W.’s national security team, wrote in Politico that the Obama administration should just admit failure and turn over the Pashtun South to the Taliban since it will inevitably control it anyway. He said that the administration doesn’t appreciate the extent to which this is a Pashtun nationalist uprising.
Dowd, NYT 7-28-2010