Blog or Not?

A statistically improbable polymath's views on politics and culture.

Saturday, October 30, 2004
My hometown is really creepy
Introducing... the Anderson County Sherrif's Department Jail Webcam.

(Okay, I grew up in Oak Ridge, not Clinton. Close enough.)

Via Cruel Site of the Day

Prompted by Josh Marshall...
and his post here, I have decided to share my thoughts on Kerry and Bush's response to Osama: I could see Kerry himself leading a Special Forces unit into the Afghan-Pakistani hinderlands. Meanwhile, Bush would be cowering in a bunker, his body hunched over in fear--until Karl comes in and tells him it's time to pose in front of the fighter jet. Wuss.

Friday, October 29, 2004
Wait a minute...
isn't bin Laden left-handed? And didn't the Saudis indicate that bin Laden was grateful for our help in the '80s, after the Lebanon fiasco?

And frankly, he sounds almost rational. Too rational.

Friday, October 22, 2004
Do not read this in the Regenstein...
or else you will:
a. squeal with delight and pump your fist in the air
b. cry out "Nooo!"
and, in both cases a and b, piss off the guy on the computer next to you.

Drezner has spoken.

Tuesday, October 19, 2004
The Draft Is Coming ! The Draft is Coming!
The Selective Service is updating its plans for drafting healthcare workers in a case of a national emergency that swamps the military medical corps.

Apparently the memo warned agency officials to be discreet, because '"overtures from Selective Service to the medical community will be seen as precursors to a draft," and that could alarm the public.'

You think?

The article goes further to note that the military is concentrating on registering specialists in various areas, not on drafting everyday civilians. That makes me feel so much more secure.

Saturday, October 16, 2004
Time to order the sign...
Drezner's probability of voting for Kerry is at 80%.

Would it be too unscholarly for the Political Science Department to unfurl a massive "UC PoliSci For Kerry" sign on the east side of Pick?

Wednesday, October 13, 2004
I thought "Demos" meant "People", not "Men"
Remember George W. Bush claiming that Saudi Arabia was going to be moving towards democracy*? They're excluding half the population, because they won't be able to have women's polling places. Haven't these guys ever heard of voting absentee?

(Via Matt Yglesias at TAPPED)

*And yes, I'm quite aware that the original Greek democracy was all-male, as well as every "democracy" up until the late nineteenth century. We're not in the nineteenth century.

Thursday, October 07, 2004
Plus ca change...
I'm writing a paper on early modern English politics, and I'm so tempted to put anachronistic comparisons into the paper, which I won't--okay, I'm putting a sentence in about how Catholicism was Restoration England's version of the Red Menace and/or the Worldwide Jewish Conspiracy: a threat that scares the hell out of people even when demography and reason are against it. But I can't shake the feeling that early eighteenth-century elections feel like stories I've heard about mid-twentieth-century Chicago elections--bribery, patronage, recommendations from your landlord and your priest, and free booze.

And Michael Moore's getting into trouble for giving underwear to people who register to vote?
The only thing I could see pressing charges against him on would be sex discrimination, because I think a three-pack of men's white briefs may cost more than a three-pack of ramen noodles, depending on the brand of ramen.

Saturday, October 02, 2004
Shorter Obama-Keyes Debate
OBAMA: Jobs. Government's duty to keep its promises. Housing. Funding for NCLB and other federal regulations. Yes, there are problems with police abusing their power sometimes, but most cops are dece--(interrupted by guy who should really get a weblog instead of raving about the police state during every debate; weird little period when I almost felt like crawling under the pew, but things calmed down.) Giving people a fair shake. I'm going to try and do my best for all of you.

KEYES: Abortion. Unborn children. Decaying culture. Family values. There's no such thing as separation of church and state. We need to bring the church back into our lives. No, I am not going to answer the question about my daughter's sexuality--I didn't say that about Mary Cheney! You're putting words into my mouth! Abortion! Prayer! I didn't support apartheid! Condoms don't work! ABORTION!

Although, I do have to admit, Keyes is an excellent speaker. I almost hope he stays in the state when he loses the election, because for all his fanaticism, he's kind of fun. But not in a "I'd like to vote for you" kind of way.