Hitler, Bush and Historical Accuracy

,

“An evil exists that threatens every man, woman and child of this great nation. We must take steps to insure our domestic security and protect our Homeland.” This quote, according to hundreds of pages on the web, is by Adolf Hitler from a 1933 (or 1932 or 1922 on some pages) announcement of the creation […]

Ludlow Amendment, the Draft, and a culture of war

,

I’m reading the somewhat disappointing book Presidential Courage: Brave Leaders and How They Changed America 1789-1989 by Michael Beschloss. I’ll have to do a complete review, but in brief, the disappointing part is that in most episodes, I get to the end and think “Oh, it’s over.” Somehow it reads a bit like a core […]

Rent or Own? Some thoughts on the true value of real estate

,

I’m always telling people that historically speaking, real estate has never been a good investment. Now, I don’t really invest because 1) I don’t have any money and 2) I have the worst sense of timing anyway. So good investment/bad investment is generally irrelevant, but I do like to track social trends and lately, whenever […]

Bush Administration Cites Success of Inquisition as Model

,

The Bush administration responded forcefully today to critics of “aggressive interrogation”, known euphemistically as “torture lite.” Critics, including the FBI, have alleged that torture is ineffective and does not elicit quality information from suspects. The Bush administration has pointed out, however, that these techniques have been extremely effective in the past. Notably, press secretary Tony […]

Drink more, earn more

,

According to a recent study, social drinker earn more — lots more. That’s all interesting enough, though it should be noted that drinking alone at home doesn’t count. What’s more interesting, though, is that barhopping without drinking apparently doesn’t count either. What’s interesting here is that, having been alerted by Paul Graham to listen to […]

Bowling Deaths Double

,

Rise of extreme bowling blamed by industry Consumer protection advocates have released a study today showing that bowling-related deaths have seen a 100 percent increase through the first half of 2006 compared to the same period last year. From January 1, 2005 until June 30, 2005, combined data from the International Bowling Federation (IBF), the […]

Switzerland declares neutrality on Sweden

,

In a move that shocked the international diplomatic community, Switzerland today declared neutrality on Sweden. The small land-locked European nation is best known for declaring neutrality on Nazi German during World War II and on Turkey during the latter nation’s struggle with Kurdish separatists. A small group of neo-con scholars thinkers commentators have long noticed […]

Era of Change Upon Us Again

,

I get the headlines from the New York Times emailed to me every day. It saves a lot of money, fuel and paper in the long run. Today, the venerable NYT sent me this headline for the article about Bill Gates stepping down at Microsoft: Gates to Cede Software Reins in Era of Change. At […]

Nation of Sheep

,

In the summer of 1959 there occurred a series of events which demonstrated our national ignorance in a shameful and nearly fatal manner. Briefly, the United States threatened intervention in a foreign country for reasons which, it turned out, had no basis in fact… Our Secretary of State called the situation grave; our ambassador to […]