We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Our Recent Essays Behind the Front Page
Wednesday, September 20. 2023
I'll expand this and point out "Anti-Gouging Laws" are a form of sanctions and not only make strenuous situations more difficult, but they also create their own markets (among people willing to pay, pay cash, and keep their mouth shut). Lots of government agencies will claim they 'work' and cite a few specific and unusual examples and claim "victory." Pyrrhic, at best. The same is true with governments discussing sanctions.
International sanctions rarely work because of the point made in the title - they create 'black' markets. Russia's oil has sanctions against it? So what. Some country that doesn't care about the West will buy it on the cheap, then resell to nations that support the sanctions but are happy to play intermediary, and eventually it gets back to the West one way or the other. Either as refined product, or by markets elsewhere that undermine the larger market and disrupt supplies.
The communist world had sanctions against many Western goods - but they were always available in communist nations. My father traveled to Russia with a suitcase carrying a few extra cases of Marlboros (he didn't smoke) and a few pairs of Levis. Always good to have the local currency (contraband) ready just in case. A friend who travelled to Argentina 8 years ago, where currency controls were in place, was directed to join a "currency club" where they got a "preferred rate of exchange". The official Argentine rate was so bad, many people set up these "clubs" where they'd exchange at a better rate, knowing they could get the currency out and exchange at better rates outside of Argentina.
There aren't many examples of sanctions working and doing what they're supposed to do. Usually sophisticated nations can find ways out of, or around, sanctions.
In the modern world, the claim was Russia's removal from the SWIFT payment system would cripple them. Someone forgot that the decentralized nature of the internet and cryptocurrencies made the hegemonic controls of a SWIFT system problematic. If you're going to cut someone out of the system - when might YOU be cut out of the system (for any variety of political reasons)? Russia isn't crushing it, economically, but the claims about how poorly it would be doing by now were clearly overblown and based on a poor understanding of modern economic interactions.
I like a walking stick - a fallen branch broken to length - when taking a tramp without a firearm. It just feels good. Fact is that a walking stick or hiking poles put you almost on three or four legs, and also lessen the wear and tear on middle-aged joints. Especially on hills.
I thought they were nurdy until I saw everybody using them (except us) during our hiking trip in the Dolomites. My Mom always used them after her knees went sour.
We have a hiking trip coming up in a while to the Hebrides and Outer Hebrides (quite similar to Johnson and Boswell's), and their main recommendations are rain gear, hiking poles, day-pack, and waterproof hiking boots. Leave the sun screen at home. I assume they provide the whiskey. The hiking part will be about 7 hrs/day, with fishing boat lifts between islands. Spartan B&Bs with Highland "cuisine." Hmmmm.
It's gloomy and nasty up there in Trump's maternal homeland, and it's easy to understand why so many of them jumped on boats in Glasgow and Liverpool to come to America where the livin' is easy and there ain't no Lairds.
BTW, if you are new to the delightful Boswell, I recommend all of his stuff. In many ways, he was more interesting and amusing than Dr. Johnson who was pedantic - but who could also slide the knife deftly into somebody's pretensions. Also, Johnson knew everything.
Pic is LL Bean telescoping poles.
U. Maryland professor gets $600k grant to make math more ‘diverse’ and ‘equitable’
Multicultural Education Fails
Books Canada is banning
The Things We Can't Say - As the culture war permeates American life, combatants set their sights on the ways we express ourselves.
As Trump predicted, Washington and Jefferson are next
Is The Gig Economy On The Verge Of Destruction?
" right-wing domination of the news media."
Stuart's Wednesday Potpourri
Ardern at UN: we are at war, so censorship is necessary
Tuesday, September 19. 2023
I posted on Monday about the death of someone I'd gone to high school with and the conversations it sparked, as well as the odd situation it presented due to the poor teen experience I'd had (and since resolved for myself), and the difficulty of finality when a relationship ends poorly.
Part of writing in a forum like this is to just 'get stuff out there'. Another part is to share ideas or feelings that may help others. Still another part is seeing what others share back.
Every single comment made is helpful and meaningful. While I haven't written for quite some time (I really need to fix how I handle time management), this was something I felt was good to share. I'm glad I did and thank you to everyone who commented. Maggie's is not just a forum to write, it's a place to share. One reason I like to post anonymously is because writing can be a way to draw attention to yourself, and that's not what I write to do. While some readers do know who I am, most don't. I like seeing what almost all our readers have to say (there is a rare comment I can't abide by...but free speech still rules my life). In this particular case - all were very useful.
What does it mean to be thin skinned? Surely, it means being hypersensitive to insults. And that means, being constantly on the lookout for offensive remarks or even offensive looks.
U. Pennsylvania’s ‘Climate Week’ to feature a Mexican dance to butterflies
Watching Girls Die Online - Female starvation as spectacle has a very long history. But now ‘thinfluencers’ have millions of followers.
'Meetups with Mandy': CDC launches publicity campaign to regain public trust
Pundits disappointed that COVID now indistinguishable from colds and allergies
Boiling Over - Recent litigation points to parents’ rising frustrations with gender and sexuality curricula in public schools.
Two-thirds of borrowers would boycott paying student loans: survey
US teenagers more likely than others to exaggerate their maths abilities
Math professors: Incoming students can’t even add fractions, subtract
Is That a Spy in Your Car? America is already beholden to China for antibiotics, lithium batteries, and 5G equipment. Now they are cornering the market on an important technology used in self-driving vehicles.
Packed cargo train of migrants heads to U.S. border
Biden Border Crisis: Video Shows Largest Illegal Crossing in Texas, Illegal Immigrants Scaling the Wall in Arizona. Border Patrol Union: “The border is wide open for all who want to crash it. Nothing has changed. That’s a fact.”
The ‘Fastest Growing Development’ In The U.S. Is A Magnet For Illegal Immigrants
Ukraine could have avoided conflict – Trump. The Republican frontrunner claimed that Kiev could have lost less territory if it had compromised with Russia before fighting began
Monday, September 18. 2023
Mortality is a strange thing. We're here, then we're not. Our friends and family are here. Then they're gone. We focus a lot on things that impact us while we're alive, as we should, to make our lives more interesting and enjoyable. Outside of rare conversations on spirituality or religion, many people spend little time thinking about saying good-bye or preparing for what is inevitable, aside from taxes. It's a strange thing that death is actually one of the more important parts of life, after perhaps birth, and just like birth we have little to no control over when it takes place. We have some control over ourselves and our lives during the interim period between birth and death, though. Maybe that's the point?
Two things occurred in the last week which started me thinking about mortality and specifically my own mortality. They were both events which get most people thinking. First was a discussion with my in-laws about their end-of-life planning, as they have now both passed their mid-80s. Second was a notice that a classmate from high school had died, not someone I was extremely close with, though we had a relationship which had recently ended poorly.
Continue reading "Birth, Death and All That Stuff in Between"
Not uncommon in the US, but not often seen. A pal had a couple roaming his back yard the other day in Maine. They are good tree-climbers. They are in the Mustelid clan - weasels to Wolverines.
Fishers are similar to the European Polecat. They do not fish - their name is from the Dutch fisse.
All about Fishers.
Charles Darwin: The Best Scientist-Writer of All Time - The Voyage of the Beagle is a literary masterpiece, as well as a scientific one.
'Unique' New Drug Is More Effective Than Ozempic For Weight Loss
Detransitioner Sues Doctors Who Cut Off Her Breasts At 16
The Migrant Surge Is Coming To The Classroom
Auto Workers Go on Strike
" On Power Line I have repeatedly asked who in his right mind would go to work for the Minneapolis police department. "
A disturbing killing, and the media won't touch it
Diversity Ditching is becoming a trend in companies
Sunday, September 17. 2023
Peterson is so damned skilled at putting things into words. This is an oldie but goldie.
Posted by Bird Dog in The Culture, "Culture," Pop Culture and Recreation at 13:48 | Comments (5) | Trackbacks (0)
Psalm 103:(1-7), 8-13
103:1 Bless the LORD, O my soul, and all that is within me, bless his holy name.
103:2 Bless the LORD, O my soul, and do not forget all his benefits--
103:3 who forgives all your iniquity, who heals all your diseases,
103:4 who redeems your life from the Pit, who crowns you with steadfast love and mercy,
103:5 who satisfies you with good as long as you live so that your youth is renewed like the eagle's.
103:6 The LORD works vindication and justice for all who are oppressed.
103:7 He made known his ways to Moses, his acts to the people of Israel.
103:8 The LORD is merciful and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love.
103:9 He will not always accuse, nor will he keep his anger forever.
103:10 He does not deal with us according to our sins, nor repay us according to our iniquities.
103:11 For as the heavens are high above the earth, so great is his steadfast love toward those who fear him;
103:12 as far as the east is from the west, so far he removes our transgressions from us.
103:13 As a father has compassion for his children, so the LORD has compassion for those who fear him.
Saturday, September 16. 2023
We were sent one recently, and Mrs. BD and I were impressed by that collection: Jasper Hill Farm Cheese Tasting Box
I don't need to mention that I know good cheese. These are serious cheeses.
Posted by Bird Dog in The Culture, "Culture," Pop Culture and Recreation at 15:43 | Comments (8) | Trackbacks (0)
Video about the endangered Palm Cockatoo
Brilliant: Doctors Open Therapy Center For Men That's An MMA Octagon With A 'Therapy' Sign Out Front
Experts want to take uteruses out of women and put them into men
American Despotism: The Historic Roots of the Constitutional Crisis. Communists have received protective treatment while anti-communists have been vilified.
It's the Economy, Stupid.
Chicago Mayor Johnson Moves Toward City-Run Grocery Stores
Stuart's Saturday Miscellany
Lampedusa, Italy, shows America the future of lawless immigration
Mid pleasures and palaces though we may roam
Be it ever so humble, there's no place like home
A charm from the skies seems to hallow us there
Which seek thro' the world, is ne'er met elsewhere
Sweet, sweet home!
There's no place like home
There's no place like home!
An exile from home splendor dazzles in vain
Oh give me my lowly thatched cottage again
The birds singing gaily that came at my call
And gave me the peace of mind dearer than all
Home, home, sweet, sweet home
There's no place like home, there's no place like home!
Friday, September 15. 2023
The prof John Miller interviews is good.
What is "narcissistic rage"?
Who were the first farmers?
KIPP schools are game changers
New York Urgently Needs To Confront the Contradiction of Trying To Electrify Everything While Also Eliminating Fossil Fuels
California To Drop 'Medical Misinformation' Law After Judge Blasts 'Dramatic Examples'
I have no reason to believe government about any topic Sad to say.
'Ho, ho; hey, hey': Students protest U Texas abolishing DEI initiatives
Dems Fundraise on Exposure of Prostitute Candidate
Thursday, September 14. 2023
Good luck with that. AI is just a slightly new software thingy. In fact, IBM has worked on more human-like computer interfaces for decades.
Can you really define what is AI and what is just clever software stuff? Plus it's world-wide now, and you can't insulate the US from internet things without a police state.
You Can Be Addicted to Weed. I Was When I Was 12.
The CDC Pushing COVID Vaccines for Those as Young as 6 Months for Cold Season. COVID is back and we’re all going to die or something.
Brooklyn middle school takes ‘math’ out of its name after students fail
The conservative push for “school choice” has had its most successful year ever. Why did it break through after decades of effort — and what comes next?
CVS And Cigna Charge $6,000 For $55 Generics
" The Times will never change, of course. It is not a newspaper, it is a political operation. But we can still enjoy a laugh at their expense."
Infanticide: WE ARE REPAGANIZING
The Return of Urban Retail Deserts - Stores fleeing from rising theft will leave residents in cities like New York with fewer places to shop, less merchandise to buy, and higher prices to pay.
Quebec's Language Restrictions Limit Freedom of Expression. One Montreal restaurant was cited for having "fish and chips" on its menu.
A restoration of history, in all its complexity, is critical to escaping the polarized, rigid, and often insane political environment we now inhabit.
Palisades nuclear power plant lookin' to become the first recommissioned nuke in U.S. history
Elon Musk: Left-Wing ADL Was ‘Instrumental’ In Blacklisting Donald Trump from Twitter
Texas Republican Mayra Flores: ‘The Mexican Cartel is in Full Control of the Southern Border’
These Are The Countries That Attract The Most Migrants
White House memo 'asks' media to quit asking questions about Biden and focus on Trump
Vivek Ramaswamy is a Fraud
Wednesday, September 13. 2023
Bernie Taupin, Elton John’s lyricist, would like to have a word
Your Fault: Our ‘Climate Change’ Dystopian Future Is Here
Ames, Iowa, underrated mecca of science
Endangered Whales Unprotected With Wind Industry In Violation Of Sonar Limits, New Research Finds
‘Too rock heavy,’ too ableist, too white: Geoscience students identify concerns in field
Democrats Froth and Seethe After John Kennedy Reads 'Gender Queer' During Senate Hearing
High stakes at New College
Colleges making Gen Z mental health crisis worse with trigger warnings
A Faculty Committee Recommended Censure, but She Was Suspended and Banished Instead
"[E]ven if we spend another year between now and the election carefully analyzing the structure and shape of the madhouse we’re locked in, it’s still a madhouse."
Massachusetts governor panics over migrant arrivals - demands ‘Right-to-Shelter’ law reform
Tuesday, September 12. 2023
Via Cornell Lab of Ornithology, you can track migration volume (and species) daily by county and state. The major flyways (Eastern, Mississippi, and Western) naturally have the highest volumes.
What is it about?
I've been urged to read this: How the World Really Works: The Science Behind How We Got Here and Where We're Going by Vaclav Smil
I had never heard of Smil, but should have.
Photo of true love from a pal in Colorado
Trail Life USA Celebrates 10 Years of Picking Up Where BSA Left Off
Shostakovich in South Dakota - A manifesto for the future of American classical music
Mistranslation of Newton’s First Law Discovered after Nearly 300 Years. A new interpretation of Isaac Newton’s writings clarifies what the father of classical mechanics meant in his first law of motion
Feminists Are Outraged At Men Going Overseas To Find Traditional Wives
Italy is a good bet.
Academia becomes female
A Kiss Is Just a Kiss. The uproar over a fleeting outburst of uninhibited joy is ludicrous.
Normal for Europeans, isn't it?
Electric Vehicles for Everyone? The Impossible Dream
No, a fad
Climate Change Calamities
A blunt and chilling (but accurate) appraisal of where our government schools are taking us
Amid another rise in cases, Covid’s new normal has set in
The Government Censored Me and Other Scientists. We Fought Back—and Won.
Professor to ‘hold space’ for students of color: ‘I see your pain, grief, anger’
These concerned Colorado citizens want to stop Trump using the 14th Amendment. This new lawsuit is not an academic exercise. It can succeed.
MAIL-IN VOTING IS HERE TO STAY; GOP MUST ADAPT OR LOSE
When Will Dem Voters Finally Concede "Something Has Gone Very Wrong In Our Country"
House GOP Asks Biden Admin About Classifying Mussels as Endangered That Could Pull Texas Buoys. “The timing of this proposed rule is highly suspicious.”
Sick! Joe Biden Claims He Went to Ground Zero Day After 9/11 – This Never Happened – He Was in DC For a Senate Session
Hotcoldwetdry Take: Biden Says ‘Climate Change’ Worse Than Nuclear War
Germany: Hey, Ukraine is still pretty corrupt
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