URLs du Jour


  • On GM bankruptcy day, Jonah Goldberg provides an appropriate quote:
    The ruling principle must be that capital and management reward must be kept in continuous and flexible adjustment with economic possibilities, and that legal and institutional arrangements--like loan contracts, bonds, legal concepts of just compensation, due process of law, and confiscation--must not obstruct executive action of government to maintain this adjustment otherwise than by the present devices of bankruptcy, foreclosures, reorganization, and cycles of booms and depressions.
    I have, however, left out some relevant information, so click on over to get that.

  • Continuing on my quest to link to any and all P. J. O'Rourke content on the web: 2009 Ford Flex: The O'Rourkes do Utah's Lower Left - Feature.

    Now, I'm not sure if "Feature" is meant to describe the type of Car and Driver article P. J. wrote, or whether that's the way P. J. is describing where they went in Utah. ("Come on, kids, pile in the Flex: we're going to see Utah's Lower Left Feature.") In any case, read it.

  • I found NASA's list of books, magazines, movies, TV shows, and music kept on the International Space Station to be oddly fascinating. Star Wars, but no Star Trek. Apollo 13, yes. The Right Stuff, no, neither movie nor book. 2010, but not 2001? (Via GeekPress.)

Last Modified 2017-12-04 5:21 PM EDT

Angels & Demons

stars] [IMDb Link] [Amazon Link]

Mrs. Salad has been a Catholic all her life, so she's always up for a thriller that involves skullduggery at the Holy See. Hence we made one of our rare trips to an actual theater to see this before it vanished.

We thought we were avoiding the crowd, but it was sold out when we tried to get in Saturday night; we finally made it in on Sunday. It was merely in sixth place in the national weekend boxoffice rankings. Its popularity here may be due to Dan Brown being a local hero.

Tom Hanks reprises his role from The Da Vinci Code, Harvard "symbologist" Robert Langdon. He's wisked off to Rome when the four leading candidates to replace the recently-deceased Pope get kidnapped and threatened with death. If that wasn't enough: the bad guys have also stolen a small chunk of antimatter from CERN's Large Hadron Collider which they threaten to release from its containment. Which would, of course, be bad.

Fortunately, the bad guys have also left plenty of incomprehensible clues involving statues, old texts, ancient societies, obscure history, etc., which is why Langdon comes in handy. (If the bad guys hadn't done that, he'd be worse than useless.) He's accompanied by a foxy CERN physicist, and has to deal with a number of Vatican folks. There's a lot of derring-do, running, dodging, explosions, gunplay, and as near as I can tell, Tom Hanks keeps the same expression on his face the entire time. He's a funny guy, they should give him a couple jokes.

The plot is, of course, absurd, nine ways from Sunday. I asked myself on the way out what the point of the bad guy's elaborate scheme was supposed to be. I couldn't come up with one.

Last Modified 2014-11-30 3:18 PM EDT