Last month the good folks of Louisiana elected Republican Jeff Landry to be their next governor. Landry is a MAGA conservative and Trump admirer, with all the right-wing baggage that goes along with that. But here's something I didn't know. Apparently Landry is at war with his state's biggest city, New Orleans: He has threatened ...continue reading "Louisiana governor wants to prosecute women who seek abortions"
Kevin Drum 🕸
The Wall Street Journal suggests the Fed will make a U-turn on interest rates soon: Twenty months after the Federal Reserve began a historic campaign against inflation, investors now believe there is a much greater chance that the central bank will cut rates in just four months than raise them again in the foreseeable future. ...continue reading "Is the Fed finally about to lower interest rates?"
I like Vox. It could use a little more editing to get word lengths down, but they often run interesting pieces with plenty of detail and backup data. However, they are also the online home of wokeness—and sometimes it's just too heavy-handed to ignore. Today, for example, I was reading a lengthy piece about falling ...continue reading "Here is the new dictionary definition of woke"
This is US 160 just east of Tuba City in Arizona.
Jean Guerrero, a columnist for the LA Times, recently took her iPhone in for service: As I drove around to various errands, I awoke to details of the real world that I’d long ago stopped noticing: the faces of strangers in cars behind me at traffic stops, my steering wheel’s leather, the ethereal whiteness of ...continue reading "Detox from social media sounds great!"
A few days ago the Wall Street Journal asked a bunch of college students to write about why we don't trust science anymore. Why? Beats me, but apparently they poll the youth of America every week on some subject or another. In any case, pretty much everyone agreed that the answer was COVID. But they ...continue reading "It isn’t true that “we” have lost confidence in science"
Only a third of Republicans think that COVID-19 vaccines are safe. But then again, they're also skeptical of flu and RSV vaccines. They just don't seem to trust vaccines much.
I got pointed to a Washington Post editorial today which suggests that political polarization is hurting marriage rates because young women are considerably more liberal than young men. I'm not so sure that's a big issue, but what really drew my attention was this: A growing number of young women are discovering that they can’t ...continue reading "Young men are doing fine. Really."
How much does it cost to "fill up" an electric car? That depends on two things: the efficiency of the car and the cost of electricity. Assuming that 300 miles equals a "full tank," here's the cost for a sample of cars and states: This was inspired by a friend who was complaining about the ...continue reading "Raw data: The cost to charge an EV"
Emily Hand, a 9-year-old Irish girl, was released by Hamas yesterday. The taoiseach of Ireland released a statement: Twitter went nuts. This girl wasn't "lost"! She was kidnapped! Held hostage! How dare the leader of Ireland insult Israel this way!?! Here's the next paragraph: This is typical of the discourse these days. The LA Times ...continue reading "BREAKING: Sometimes things on the internet are misleading"
The good news for Nikki Haley is that she's risen from 5% to 10% in the polls: The bad news is that in September she was 47 points behind Trump. Today, with Trump doing barely anything aside from writing unhinged posts on Truth Social, she's 49 points behind.
I know this is hardly a brilliant insight, but I continue to be sort of stunned by how absolutist Americans are—or seem to be, anyway—on the subject of Israel and its enemies. It hardly requires a scholar's dedication to nuance to understand that both sides have acted horrifically at various times over the past century. ...continue reading "Israelis and Arabs have both acted abominably over the years"
Our garage still has its original garage door. It's old school: a flat hunk of wood that levers upward on a hinge to open. Marian has long wanted to replace it with a modern roll-up paneled door, but I've resisted because the old one is fine. Why bother? But luckily for her, some house painters ...continue reading "A question for the hive mind about garage doors"
T-Mobile has a feature that transcribes voice mail and then texts it to you. I imagine other mobile carriers do the same. Overall it's remarkably good, but it does have a weak spot: names. I frequently get messages from Kaiser Permanente that begin "This call is for Kevin Drum." The last four of them have ...continue reading "Voice recognition still needs some work"
This is according to the Gaza Ministry of Health through November 10th and the Government Media Office after November 22: Since the beginning of November Israel has been killing a very steady 300 Palestinians per day.
How's the infrastructure bill coming along? It passed in late 2021 and allocated $550 billion in new spending over eight years. That's about $70 billion per year. Here's actual spending: Adjusted for inflation, public construction spending had been trending downward when the infrastructure bill was passed. A few months later spending ticked up and is ...continue reading "Raw data: Capital spending after passage of the infrastructure bill"
Tyler Cowen got me curious about something yesterday. Commenting on the Geert Wilders victory in the Netherlands, he says "much of the world is moving in a right-wing direction." But is that true? Yes, we have the evidence of Italy and now the Netherlands this year. But we also have Poland, where the illiberal Law ...continue reading "Is the world moving in a right-wing direction?"
The Wall Street Journal says real estate data shows that more people are returning to the office: According to a September report by Redfin, about 10% of home sellers in the U.S. are looking to move because of return-to-work policies, indicating that after more than three years of remote-work policies dominating behavior in the housing ...continue reading "Return-to-work has stalled out in 2023"
This is Charlie out front gazing at birds flying overhead. Sadly for him, they are just a dream. The crows around here are about as big as he is.
Arin Dube thinks he knows the answer to an ongoing issue: I am tried of this debate because the answer is yes and we should stop debating it https://t.co/47B2nG6JOL — Arin Dube (@arindube) November 24, 2023 In other words, the answer is yes to both questions. People are concerned about their actual conditions and social ...continue reading "We know why (some) people think the economy is terrible"