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Entries from October 2008

What Does Meaning MEAN, Man?

October 30th, 2008 · 4 Comments

I’m not sure I entirely agree with Will Wilkinson here, but he’s always a pleasure to read.

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Tags: General Philosophy

A Closed Theory Case Study

October 30th, 2008 · 12 Comments

I’ve been watching, with a certain morbid fascination, the ongoing saga of the “Michelle Obama tapes” hoax. For those just tuning in, this began two weeks ago, when an obscure WordPress blog calling itself “African Press International” claimed that the would-be first lady had called them up to deliver a daffy self-destructive rant—in rather conspicuously […]

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Tags: Horse Race Politics · Sociology

In the Unlikely Event that You Care

October 29th, 2008 · 2 Comments

I explain my presidential preference in Reason’s 2008 election survey. My answer to the primary question seemed pretty representative of the respondents: Living in the District of Columbia, I see little reason to mar my as-yet unblemished record of nonvoting. But if I lived in Virigina or Florida, I’d be ticking the box for Obama—not […]

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Tags: Horse Race Politics · Self Promotion

Debates and Those Mysterious Undecideds

October 28th, 2008 · 4 Comments

I’d meant to write about this back around the time of the last debate, but I’m always puzzled by those little focus groups of the volk the networks put together to watch the presidential contenders spar. They invariably go around beforehand and ask these self-described undecided voters what they’re waiting to hear over the course […]

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Tags: Horse Race Politics · Journalism & the Media · Sociology

Why I’d Opt Out of Insurance

October 27th, 2008 · 5 Comments

So, I want to caveat this post by saying this isn’t supposed to be any sort of argument for more vigorous intervention in health care. Beyond my general instinctive “gummint bad” caveman grunt, I have no very well thought out views on healthcare policy. (Funny how that works, isn’t it? Five years ago, I felt […]

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Tags: Economics


October 27th, 2008 · Comments Off on Priorities

First, credit where credit is due to bloggers on the right, like Michelle Malkin, who right at the outset acknowledged that something sounded awfully fishy about Ashley Todd’s now-infamous tall tale about being violently assaulted by an enraged Obama fan. That said, however, I’m a little dismayed by the number of conservative bloggers who appear […]

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Tags: Horse Race Politics · Journalism & the Media

Can You Cast a Spell to Stop My Ears Bleeding?

October 25th, 2008 · 4 Comments

For no good reason at all, I just saw the opening credits to the now-defunct TV show Charmed. Why in the name of all that’s good and pure would anyone do that to “How Soon is Now?”—and having done it, why would anyone use it for anything? Nothing that happens in the course of the […]

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Tags: Art & Culture

Dude, Call Me

October 24th, 2008 · Comments Off on Dude, Call Me

Yglesias finds this from an interview with Rachel Maddow: Biggest misconception about pundits: That we all hang out together. I don’t know any of these people. Maybe all the pundits are hanging out and not inviting me. […] By her bed: Comic books. I read comics sometimes and graphic novels. I appreciate that genre. So, […]

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Tags: Art & Culture · Journalism & the Media · Washington, DC

It Will Be a Subdivision of Their Ministry of Truth…

October 20th, 2008 · 6 Comments

The Media Research Center has just launched an anti–Fairness Doctrine group on Facebook they’re calling the “Free Speech Alliance.”  Yes, that Media Research Center.  Seriously. Satire is dead.

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Tags: Journalism & the Media

The Constitutional Argument Against Retroactive Immunity

October 20th, 2008 · Comments Off on The Constitutional Argument Against Retroactive Immunity

Like Fox Mulder, I want to believe the arguments ACLU and EFF are advancing against the legitimacy of the FISA Amendments Act’s retroactive immunity provisions—and I do think at least a couple of them are pretty strong. But I’m not yet super-sanguine about the chances of the court agreeing; Walker Vaughn might give them a […]

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Tags: Law · Privacy and Surveillance · Self Promotion