Wednesday December 11, 2013
Archive - 2013
I worked for Google as a software engineer from 2003 to 2008. I never worked directly with Marissa Mayer (and I didn't know her socially either), but I saw enough to know that she was very driven and had a firm vision of what she wanted, worked out in the finest detail. She stuck to her guns. Her genius, like Steve Jobs', was in managing the interface between computers and those difficult-to-fathom humans, making the tech as user-friendly and seamless as possible.
Sometimes politics is like high-stakes poker. If you look around the table after a few hands and you can't tell who's the pigeon, citizen, chances are it's you: the guy who plunked down $26.95 for a book called "Impeachable Offenses: The Case for Removing Barack Obama from Office."
Maybe it's good that the justices have another month off before the Supreme Court starts up again. The wounds from last term don't seem fully healed.
There was Justice Antonin Scalia, speaking in Montana last week, none too subtly chastising his colleagues' rulings on gay rights. "It's not up to the courts to invent new minorities that get special protections," Scalia said, according to The Associated Press.
Tell us stuff, we need to know,
And soon it’s off to jail you’ll go.
Don’t get fooled by terms like “classified secrets” or “aiding the enemy.” They just cover up the darker sides of our national security state.
There have to be lines.
We are not in the business of regime change. We cannot be the world's police. There are civil wars we won't stop, abusive leaders we won't depose, corrupt governments we will decline to see as such.
But there have to be some things that even the worst and most abusive leaders cannot do with impunity, and using chemical weapons against their own people has to be one of them.
To some people, it has been said, all black people look alike. These days, all black issues seem to look alike, too.
What else explains the false comparisons that conservatives who ought to know better insist on making between two horrible, controversial and yet distinctly different racially charged tragedies?
“It tastes like…” my six-year-old friend paused to search for a word disgusting enough to describe school lunch. “Throw up,” she concluded. Her sister, a fifth grader, nodded in agreement.
Really? I’ve heard fantastic reviews of the cafeteria director there. No doubt, he is doing everything he can to provide the most nutritious yet tasty breakfasts and lunches the school can afford.
Moderate Republicans are, were, good things. I use the past tense "were" because as they became rarities, the centrists' chief function was preserving majorities in Congress for their radicalized party.
New England used to send lots of moderate Republicans to Washington. No more, and it's not because there aren't attractive Republican candidates. It's because the ones representing liberal-to-moderate regions became scapegoats at which party extremists directed their primal screams.
President Obama deserves credit for using his bully pulpit to address the crisis in college affordability.
Especially admirable is his insistence that institutions must control their costs, instead of jacking up tuition and passing the expense on to students, as they have for decades.
Now that the Arab Spring has been turned into a totally owned subsidiary of the Saudi royal family, it is time to honor Prince Bandar bin Sultan as the most effective Machiavellian politician of the modern era. How slick for this head of the Saudi Intelligence Agency to finance the Egyptian military's crushing of that nation's first-ever democratic election while being the main source of arms for pro-al-Qaida insurgents in Syria.