I'm excited to report that Blog For Darwin is now up to 65 participants. Some are classroom blogs, others are blogs of individuals in the arts. Many are the blogs of graduate students in the sciences. Blog For Darwin is February 12th-15th.
Total deaths in 2007, out of total population 8,274,527: 54,073
Leading cause of death to New Yorkers: cardiovascular diseases Second-leading cause: malignant neoplasms
Of those who died, those who lived in Manhattan: 9,652 In the Bronx: 8,691 In Brooklyn: 15,771 In Queens: 12,721 On Staten Island: 3,238
Those who died of natural causes: 51,116
Crotch ball: a shot to the juncture between wall and floor Dead ball: a ball that is out of play Fist ball: a closed-handed shot Ace: an unreturnable serve Killer: a low-flying, unreturnable shot Fly shot: a ball hit off the wall before it reaches the floor Spike: an overhead shot that lands in a low corner Roller: a spinning groundout Yellow; white: the line Pump; pinky; Pensy Pinky; Spaldeen; small; hard; black; big blue: terms for the ball
Sweden made bank equity part of the solution to its 1992 financial crisis. See The NY Times article, “Stopping a Financial Crisis, the Swedish Way,” (9/22/08). Sweden had an insolvent banking system. It didn't just have the gov't take over banks' bad debts. Banks had to write down losses & issue warrants to the gov't. Banks were held responsible & turned gov't into an owner. Bad assets were sold; profits went to taxpayers & the gov't recouped more by selling shares in the banks later. ###
My letter echoes one I sent to my Congressman on Sept. 30, 2008. In that letter, I urged four provisions be applied to H.R. 3997. I think I'd read of the provisions on a netroots site, but I can't recall which one.
1. Add bankruptcy judges’ ability to review and adjust first mortgages so that ordinary Americans stand a better chance of staying in their homes.
2. Put some real teeth in the caps on pay and bonuses so that Americans don't see this money as patching in the holes on executive's golden parachutes.
3. Bind the continuation of payments on this plan to Congressional approval after annual review, rather than having payments continue by default, so we—the taxpayers—only pay if the plan proves to be effective and continues to be needed.
4. Limit further the Treasury Secretary’s power. It is paramount that the bailout provides for both review and revision.
Perry Moore is a best-selling author, film producer, screenwriter, and director, best known as the executive producer of The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe.
Moore is a huge fan of comic books. It has long been noted that superhero comics, like much science fiction as well, often depict worlds in which there are no gay characters, and if there are, they usually evil, tragic, peripheral, or a combination thereof. Moore has created a very interesting (and rather disheartening) catalogue of the treatment of gay characters in superhero comic books.
Gov. David Paterson has selected upstate US Rep. Gillibrand (photo) to fill Sec. of State Clinton's former US Senate seat. I'm disappointed by what would appear to be the case that my Gov.'s political calculations relating to his own re-election caused him not only to--through Sen. Gillibrand--potentially compromise progress on reproductive health and marriage equality, but to open up a seat that the Republicans can be competitive in, since they outnumber Dems by 70,000 in Gillibrand's district. I'm withholding judgment on whether or not this is a good pick until I see how she performs. (Far less reasonable cause for my hesitancy about Gillibrand: I'm also tired of folksy politicians right now. I was raised with that in Iowa. I've had my fill.)
I get irked when the word less is used improperly instead of fewer.
You should use fewer in relation to nouns that can be counted; use less in relation to nouns that can't be counted.
CORRECT: I bought fewer pints of milk today. INCORRECT: I bought less pints of milk today. (Pints of milk can be counted; so use fewer.)
CORRECT: There will be fewer cars on the highway next year. INCORRECT: There will be less cars on the highway next year. (Cars can be counted; so use fewer.)
CORRECT: The chances are good that you should use less fewer times than you do. INCORRECT: The chances are good that you should use less less times than you do. (Times, meaning instances, can be counted; so use fewer.)
To be sure, many instances in which the word fewer is required could be re-worded to use the word less.
CORRECT: I bought less milk today. (Though you can count pints of milk, you can't count milk; so using less is correct in this instance.) CORRECT: There will be less traffic on the highway next year. (Though you can count of cars, you can't count traffic; so using less is correct in this instance.)
The Military Religious Freedom Foundation (MRFF) routinely receives reports from soldiers pressured to conform to commanders' religious beliefs. The prayer of Rick Warren at President Obama's inauguration occasioned more instances of such pressure.
Chris Rodda highlights a letter from a decorated combat officer. From the letter:
after Pastor Warren ended his invocation by praying in the name of his personal Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, our Commander jumped to his feet clapping and yelled "God Bless him for having the courage to pray for all of the lost souls in the name of our Savior Jesus Christ!" About a third of those attending also clapped. I did not. That was until our Commander turned around to survey everyone's reaction to his statement. When that happened, the officer next to me started to clap and the one to my left clapped too. I felt like I was in a spotlight as the Commander looked at me and the female officer in front of me who had also not clapped. Then she clapped. And then I clapped too. I tried not to but could not muster up the strength to be the only one in the room not clapping in support of our Commander and Warren.
[Gov. Bobby] Jindal announced the formation of the Louisiana Commission on Marriage and Family, billed as "an entity within the executive department that serves to propose programs, policies, incentives and curriculum regarding marriage and family...."
I'm sure you'll be surprised to hear that the group is made up of a virtual who's who of the religious right in Louisiana.
Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal (photo) is not unlike Southerner Mike Huckabee and she who is from that-state-so-north-it's-almost-the-South, Sarah Palin. They're Republican governors, all three. They're relatively or absolutely young, all three. They're tagged as rising stars within the GOP, all three. And they're magical, all three! The way each governor's worldview blends conservativism and crypto- (or not-so-crypto-) supernaturalism in the service of power evokes the Persian magi, medieval Vatican court astrologers, or Confucian diviners. (Huckabee loves the magic that is Creationism; Palin, the magic that is holy laughter and magical healing and witch-hunting, and Jindal, the magic that is demon possession.)
However, as Huckabee (Christian fundamentalist) and Palin (The New Apostolic Reformation/Third Wave) flaunt a folksy, affable exterior, yet drop hits of anger simmering beneath--a riptide pulling along lovers of the politics of resentment--Jindal (who is Roman Catholic) offers an ostensibly more attractive and polished style, all the more seductive, especially probably to middle-class voters, thanks to his medical training and Ivy League credentials. (Of course, Sen. Bill Frist, Dr. Video-diagnosis From Afar in the Service of Ideology, has shown us the potentially low value of medical professionals in politics, and Ivy League degrees are a dime a dozen among the long list of villains in American political history--Pat Robertson, just to name one.)
A 2012 GOP presidential ticket combining any two of the three above-mentioned conjurers could almost certainly never occur. It might be a double-dose of craziness that "blue" American and a sizeable portion of even "red" America would find to be simply too much to stomach. However, any one of them balanced on a presidential ticket with a vigorous (but not frenetic) and probably non-Southern--or at least probably not from a state that went to Obama in the 2008 election--white male public offical. Who knows? Jindal has intimated that he'll not run for president in 2012 (which means he's considering doing so).
It's anybody's guess. The GOP may find their Obama (the "GOPama" candidate?), someone as of now still unelected or at least mostly unknown, between now and the 2011/2012 primaries and caucuses season. I don't at this time think that the Gopama is Jindal. But who knows? If he's not keen to be in the running for 2012 or 2016, he certainly has less need to curry favor with the religious right as he's doing with his worrisome Commission on Marriage and Family.