Friday, February 05, 2010

Bits and Pieces - February 5, 2010

I think I'll post the data I'm picking up in my quest for that GUTR.

The budget deficit hysteria.

Yesterday, Ezra told us that Lawrence Lessig's piece about the corruption of Congress would be the topic du jour in the blogosphere. But I guess Richard Shelby didn't want that to happen.

Republicans all think alike. I should say that I have a couple of Republican friends who get upset when I say stuff like this. The other day I amended it to "self-identified Republicans," and that seemed to work better for them. Both of them feel that they can make a difference by maintaining their membership in the group while distancing themselves from teh Crazy.

Paul Krugman reminds us why Poland never became a great power.

If you're a conservative Christian who believes the husband is head of the family and superior to you as a woman, this shouldn't be surprising.

Now I'm moving out of the strictly political stuff. But I think this article is relevant. If you've never seen someone die of whooping cough, or lost a classmate to polio with the concomitant summer restrictions, or heard your mother tell you how two of her siblings died of diphtheria and she nearly did, then it's easy to believe that your baby's crying at the needle is a portent of dreadful things to come. But this was another flat-out lie, which, unfortunately, The Lancet believed. The things we take for granted keep changing.

Armenia and Turkey are struggling to reestablish a decent relationship.

Doctors' egos kill. Just like they did with childbed fever.

And, finally, that little bit of hope left in Pandora's box (I couldn't really work this out for "Avatar," though), a visit with gorillas.
We moved on and found ourselves in a small cluster of gorillas. The young ones rushed around and brushed up against us. Their mothers watched cautiously. And then something happened that continues to haunt me. There was a mother with a baby. We stopped to look and she held it up for us to see.

2 comments:

Andy said...

Cheryl,

I'm not sure if you read any conservative views in your quest for a GUTR, but one I think you might find useful is Rick Moran. Here are a couple of his posts that might interest you:

Why Conservatism is Disconnected from Reality


GOP: OUT OF GAS, OUT OF IDEAS, OVER THE CLIFF

THE DIFFERENT REALITY INHABITED BY THE CONSERVATIVE BASE

This series on intellectual conservatism is particularly good.

There's also this piece by Chilton Williamson.

Finally, there's this fairly famous post from Charles Johnson author of Little Green Footballs.

The common theme is that the rightwing is in the midst of a civil war and the Birther/Palin faction currently holds the most influence over the Republican party.

I read Krugman's column and thought it was a striking contrast to one he wrote back in 2003. Personally, I think the 2003 Krugman makes a better argument, but then I'm decidedly one that believes our structural deficits is the primary long-term challenge.

Finally, your link to Lessig's piece actually links to Krugman.

Cheryl Rofer said...

Hi Andy -

I'll take a look at your conservative links. There's so much out there, and so much of it is (sorry) nonsense, that I've been wondering how to get into it.

I have been following the LGF controversy.

Different points of view in a political party have long been acceptable in the US, since we've only got two parties. Part of the Republican problem seems to be that they have factions that believe there is no room for different points of view. And the Nat Silver post I linked shows that they have succeeded in "purifying" the party to a rather amazing degree.

But then comes the question of why some feel this need for ideological purity, what happens when one of our two parties decides that it will become a small minority, and how small a minority they actually turn out to be.

And I've fixed the Lessig link.