Saturday, October 26, 2013


Look, there are plenty of instances of real racism, without going this route:

The underlying question in the reaction to these incidents—and several similar other ones this year involving Latino players, including Puig—seemed to be why these players couldn't simply behave like they are supposed to? Why couldn't these guys play the game the "right way"? 

The framing of the incidents in this manner is ignorant and prejudicial. What exactly is the "right way" to play the game? Who decides what the "right way" is? And why can't bat flips and celebrations be considered the "right way"?

In the Dodgers-Cards series, Yasiel Puig got attention for being a jerk, and standing around home plate celebrating a ball that didn't even go out.  And he's a rookie.  Rookies don't act that way.  It's not about race, it's about status.  You don't act like you are all that until you are all that.  And THEN you don't act that way, because it's not baseball.

A case in point:  David Ortiz (that's Dav-EED Or-TEES, for you keeping score of Latinos).  On Wednesday night, he hit a single, and because his bat touched the Cards' catcher on the follow-through David looked back ON HIS WAY TO FIRST BASE and pointed, saying, "Sorry, man."  That's class.

And then Ortiz hit a home run on Thursday night.  In a scoreless game.  With his team behind.  In the WORLD SERIES. And he dropped his bat, and ran to first.  No celebration, no "I'm a badass" stuff.  Just did his job.  Watch the video.  Now, you can see that Ortiz wasn't sure it would go out, but it did go out.  Puig was sure it would go out, and IT DIDN'T.

If one of the greatest hitters, regular and post-season, in baseball history can act that way, surely the youngsters can, too.  This is not a racial matter.  It's a question of keeping your mouth shut and earning respect.  David Ortiz is a paragon of how the game should be played.  So is Carlos Beltran. The problem is youth.  The problem is Bryce Harper and Yasiel Puig.  Not Carlos and David.

Friday, October 25, 2013

Where will the growth be?

What nations will grow more free?  Bet on Borat!  An article to read....

Nod to Kevin Lewis

Cards Trivia!

 What to the 2006, 2011 and 2013 title runs all have in common?

The Cardinals switched closers in September!  
  • Jason Isringhausen went down with a hip injury in September of 2006 and the closer role went to Adam Wainwright
  • Jason Motte took over the closer role from Fernando Salas in September of 2011 as Salas lost effectiveness
  • Trevor Rosenthal took over the closer role for Mujica in 2013 as Mujica lost effectiveness (at least partly because he was hurt)
Switching closers is not usually a good thing. So presumably this is just luck. But it looked good last night!

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Halloween: Too Scary

Wow.  Universities are some loco parents, huh?

University outlaws controversial (?) Halloween costumes.

I guess this means I have to take back my "Sexy Illegal Immigrant Kardashian Gardener" costume. 


Some of you may be wondering if the Cards will collapse, now that they got a butt-whuppin' in game 1 last night.  You might want to watch this (if you can):  Cards skipper Mike Matheny takes a fastball to the face, and pretty much just says, "That's all you've got?"

Sure, he left the game, but he was spitting out teeth.  Matheny played ten innings the NEXT DAY.

Let's see what the next day brings for the Cards.  Nod to the Dutch Boy, who knows from tough (he's from Ocoee, ya know.)

An Interview with B. Nyhan

An interview with my Duke homeslice Brendan Nyhan.

Reflecting as always Brendan's painfully earnest view that better facts will give us better politics.  But to be fair there is also some interesting social science here:

They found that being told the scandal was false had some effect on participants’ belief in the story, but not nearly as much as being given an alternative explanation. “The innuendo significantly increased the perceived likelihood that Swensen was corrupt,” the authors wrote. “Disturbingly, this effect persisted in the denial condition; respondents who were told of Swensen’ s denial were still significantly more likely than controls to believe in the corruption story. However, the causal correction undid this effect.” 

Nyhan and Reifler recommended that alternative explanations be presented with corrections whenever possible. The experiment shows what fact-checkers are up against. When false information is let loose, it is very difficult to refute, especially when it corresponds to a preexisting narrative about a public figure.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Indie Truth Bombs

“Hear ye, Hear ye! We suck.”

Annals of internet greatness: guitar edition

First off, here's the most passionate guitar player in the world (if you only watch one video today, it should be this one):

Next up is the best semi-nude, stoned on thorazine, upside down guitar playing ever:

And finally, best guitar ensemble where the boys wear pantyhose:

Monday, October 21, 2013

The Father, the George Clooney, and the Dead George Clooney

Saw my first ever IMAX 3D movie yesterday.


Visually very cool and the effects were incredible.

I was surprised to discover though that the plot was straight out of the gospels.

Bullock is the burned out sinner, carrying pain and guilt.

First Clooney is Jesus, giving his life for her.

Then, on her deathbed, Bullock plays Pascal's Wager and Dead Clooney comes back as the Holy Spirit to enter her heart and teach her how to fly the busted thingie over to the other busted thingie.

Heck she even gets baptized at the end!

I can't believe Alfonso Cuarón gave himself a writing credit. Maybe "the apostles" will win an Oscar for original screenplay next year.

Tyler saw the book of Job, and indeed Bullock faces various tribulations, but I think this story is straight -up New Testament all the way.

Monday's Child

1.  The French assembly:  clucks.  It clucks. 
I'm always a bit surprised when American lefties try to admire France.  It is a bizarrely sexist culture.

2.  We have a quota for the number of people we keep locked up in expensive federal prisons.  Yes, we do.  Because Robert Byrd, ex-clansman, never really got over hatin' on brown folks.

3.  A new "type":  Slacker Millenial Guy.

4.  US gov shutdown delays "Space Night" relaunch.  I guess those poor Germans will just have to stick with THIS cult classic.

5.  Oreos are "as addictive as cocaine"?  I think not.  I'm sure some people really like Oreos, but "quitting" sugar isn't as catastrophic for the body as ending a cocaine addiction.

6.  Wolfy is not sure what "single digits" means.   (Or he thinks his listeners are that dumb).

7.  Those who can't do, teach:  Ethicists don't pay their registration fees at conferences, either.

8.  An excellent setting for a sci fi/horror film.  But a tough place to live, I would think.

9.  From an email sent to federal employees:

 OPM has prepared sample letters to creditors, mortgage companies and landlords for use by employees that need to make payment arrangements due to the lapse of appropriations. Please see attached. This afternoon, we provided these sample letters to agency chief human capital officers and HR directors to make available to employees. These letters are also available on OPM’s webpage

P-Kroog is likely right about this.  The stimulus may have been dumb, but this anti-stimulus is dumber.

10.  This is quite interesting.  As Buchanan-bashing goes, it is at least clever.  And I have long claimed that Marx, Stigler, and Tullock share quite a few premises, though not many conclusions.

11.  A very cool paper by Jonathan Anomaly.  In PPE.

12.  A provocative speech.  This whole "deserve" thing is pretty tough.  Lots of people believe that no one deserves anything, because we live in a giant hive.  And the hive gives us life, and deserves our loyalty.

13.  Kids trade in cheese!

14.  I think was a mistake.  The show does not have to go on.

15.  I have never seen "Game of Thrones."  But it turns out that Boromir is in it!  Oh, and it's a theme park, on Bad Lip Reading.

16.  Brits don't eat frogs; only those nasty French do that.  Brits did eat toads, it appears.  Perhaps it was just a bunch of French tourists, however.

17.  Yale Professor surprised to find that Tea Party identifiers are above average in scientific acumen and intelligence.  Response:  Tea Party identifiers astonished that Yale Professor can find own bum with both hands.

18.  A restaurant in NYC where everything is locally sourced, and everyone is silent. Their web site....

19.  Teaching can work?

20.  This story is a little far-fetched.  I mean, we're supposed to believe someone went into a Barnes and buy BOOKS?

21.  We need more elections like this.  The guy is running unopposed, but decided he wants to quit.  But he forgot to to have his name removed from the ballot. So this guy, the candidate, is trying to persuade to voters to write in someone else.

22.  Cat caught smuggling pot into prison.  (Jokes in comments, please!)

23.  This was about three minutes from happening to the LMM.  The arrival of the YYM was precipitate (but then the LMM spent an extra half hour blow drying her hair before we left for the hospital).

24.  Putin taught a crane to fly (?) last year.  But now it always gets lost.  A perfect metaphor for something.

25.  Famous brands/commercials updated with more honest taglines.

26.  Welcoming the dual-purpose chicken.  To Germany? It's actually a "super chicken," to be fair.  And who could forget that?

27.  Americans in need will find a way to sign up for Obamacare, the Atlantic says.  Then how come these same folks can't get an ID to go vote?  I don't understand... It's way, way harder to sign up for Obamacare than it is to get an ID.


Sunday, October 20, 2013

Royals are Not Gluten Free

Raising awareness for those afflicted by Celiacs.  And a sense of sarcasm.

QOTD: Paradise Lost?

Tyler drops a truthbomb in the NYT:

Republicans will need to recognize that repeal of Obamacare should not be their obsession, because they would then be leaving the nation with a dysfunctional yet still highly government-oriented health care system, not some lost conservative paradise.

Amen. The pre-ACA status quo was a mess, there is no coherent Republican plan out there, and simultaneous control of the House, Senate and Presidency does not appear to be in the near-term cards for the GOP (nor even a veto-proof majority in both houses of congress).

The whole piece is well worth reading.

I am not sure of the procedure for Federalizing Medicaid, but the idea is a good one. Let the rich liberals pay for the poor in the red states!

And I'm already on record as supporting a less comprehensive but still mandatory insurance package.

While we are at it, let's throw in breaking the AMA stranglehold on the practice of medicine. More immigration, less strict rules about who can do what, even more entry into medical schools are all good ideas.