Confusion followed by Mild Panic followed by Understanding

It looks like Dennis Kucinich has lost his Congressional Seat in Ohio. As it turns out, it’s due to a redistricting and Republicans merged his seat with Marcy Kaptur’s and she won the primary… and the possibility exists that he’s going to run for Congress again in Washington (which has a new open seat). So…

Mindless Diversions Extra!

(This blog post was originally intended for Mindless Diversions but, upon publishing it there, I immediately had visions of the political and/or religious comments that would follow. As such, I think that the Front Page would make a much better home for it. Without further ado, this is a guest post written by our very…

Nobel Peace Prize Jury Faces Formal Inquiry

Read the story here. Here’s the paragraph that would make clicking through worthwhile, if you’re still undecided: If the Stockholm County Administrative Board, which supervises foundations in Sweden’s capital, finds that prize founder Alfred Nobel’s will is not being honored, it has the authority to suspend award decisions going back three years — though that…

Race, Privilege, Music, and The N-Word

On Wednesdays on the Mindless Diversion blog, I’m quite regularly pleased to play one of my favorite songs or one of my previous favorites or something that just gets stuck in my head… and, yeah, odds are that if the song is from between 1988-1997, it’s got a story or three associated with it as…

A Modest Proposal for Preventing the Children of Poor People From Being a Burden on Their Parents or Country, and for Making Them Beneficial to the Public 2011

The latest little tempest in a teapot we’ve had here on the internets involves an essay on Parental Licensure written by Andrew Cohen at the usually significantly different kind of crazy Libertarian website Bleeding Heart Libertarians. If you don’t feel like reading the whole thing, the argument in a nutshell begins with the insight shared…

On the Seventh Blind Man and the Elephant

(For opposite week, I decided to argue a theist position.) One of the biggest problems when it comes to any discussion of theism vs. atheism is when some wag asks for a definition of “God”. The general trick is to get them to make some overstatement and then to say “well, yeah, I don’t believe…

Lazy Sunday Afternoon Jukebox And Open Thread

As it turns out, there aren’t any good Tim Tebow songs. There, are, however, Tim Tebow songs. A surprising number, actually. Don’t google them. Seriously. Instead, listen to this lovely song from The War On Drugs, “Black Water Falls” off of their absolutely brilliant Slave Ambient: Of course, you should consider this an open thread…

To Whom?

Andrew Sullivan has a neat little post that brings up the topic of Intragalactic Ethics. There is a link to a Josh Rothman column that points out: There’s a long pro-terraforming tradition (especially among philosophically inclined science-fiction readers): Turning a lifeless place into an inhabitable one seems like a noble goal. Meanwhile, others argue that…

Request for legal advice

Having read this post by Ioz, a friend asked me a question that I didn’t know the answer to. Let’s say that you took a bottle of wine, removed one of the glasses of wine from it and replaced that liquid with an industrial-strength laxative.

On Dodging Bullets

There was recently an article in The Atlantic called All the Single Ladies in which the author explains how she broke up with her steady boyfriend when she was 28 (“something was missing; I wasn’t ready to settle down”) and went on to find herself still unmarried at age 38 (and is, apparently, unhappy about this).…

Comment Rescue: Dealth Penalty Contrasts

This comment was written by our very own Chris in the Troy Davis and the American Justice System thread: Yesterday, two men were murdered by the state, one in Georgia and one in Texas. They were both convicted of murder, but their similarities end there: one was black, the other was a white supremacist; one…

Political Theodicy

About five years back, Matt Yglesias came up with a great little analogy called “The Green Lantern Theory of Geopolitics“. It’s a pretty scathing criticism of the (primarily “neocon”) attitude that pretty much any geopolitical goal is achievable, provided we have enough Will. We could have won in Vietnam, if only we had enough will. We could…

On the Changing of Narratives

My recollections of what I was doing on 9/11 are the recollections of someone in Colorado who was working evenings. Not terribly interesting. There were, however, two things that caught my interest at the time and still stick out. These are two things that had one very distinct narrative when they started and 9/11 changed the…

As retcons go…

In looking at Captain America: The First Avenger on IMDB, I cannot help noticing the sheer number of folks associated with “Hydra” (Hydra soldier, Hydra pilot, Hydra heavy artillery soldier) and the unsheer number of folks associated with that other political party that was popular during the 30’s in some European locations. I understand that…

2011 Time Capsule

Now is as good a time as any for us to make our predictions (otherwise known as projecting our hopes and dreams into the future) about what’s going to happen in November of 2012. Who is going to be at the top of the Republican ticket? Who’s going to be VP? Is Biden going to…

Clarification Given

For the last little while, a number of officials have been asking Obama’s Department of Justice to clarify its stance on Medical Marijuana. Yesterday (Wednesday), Deputy Attorney General James M. Cole released a memo explaining the Federal Government’s stance. You can read the memo here. (Short version: He’s indistinguishable from Bush.)

Video Games are Protected Speech

In a 7-2 vote, the US Supreme Court ruled today that violent video games cannot be prevented from being sold/rented to minors. The two were Breyer and Thomas (together again) arguing that we already know that we cannot sell, ahem, “Gentlemen’s Magazines” to minors and that isn’t a violation of their First Amendment rights, therefore…