URLs du Jour

2010-01-03

  • A completely predictable outcome, reported with surprise and sorrow by the New York Times:
    The Obama administration’s $75 billion program to protect homeowners from foreclosure has been widely pronounced a disappointment, and some economists and real estate experts now contend it has done more harm than good.
    But I'm sure they'll do a better job with health care. Or energy policy. Or airline security.

  • Speaking of which, Mark Steyn makes a point Pun Salad has made itself, but does so with his usual combination of wit and we're-all-doomed. Sample:
    On Christmas Day, a gentleman from Nigeria succeeded (effortlessly) in boarding a flight to Detroit with a bomb in his underwear. Pretty funny, huh?

    But the Pantybomber wasn’t the big joke. The real laugh was the United States government. The global hyperpower spent the next week making itself a laughingstock to the entire planet. First, the bureaucrats at the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) swung into action with a whole new range of restrictions.

    Against radical Yemen-trained Muslims wearing weaponized briefs? Of course not. That would be too obvious. So instead they imposed a slew of constraints against you. At Heathrow last week, they were permitting only one item of carry-on on U.S. flights. In Toronto, no large purses.

    Um, the Pantybomber didn’t have a purse. He brought the bomb on board under his private parts, and his private parts weren’t part of his carry-on (although, if reports of injuries sustained in his failed mission are correct, they may well have been part of his carry-off).

    … but you'll want to read the whole thing.

  • When Congresscritter Joe Wilson shouted "You lie!" during a speech on Obamacare by the president, he was widely excoriated. Only a few months later, however, and even a reliably liberal New York Times columnist, Bob Herbert, is (more politely, of course) getting around to noticing the same thing:
    The tax on health benefits is being sold to the public dishonestly as something that will affect only the rich, and it makes a mockery of President Obama’s repeated pledge that if you like the health coverage you have now, you can keep it.

    Those who believe this is a good idea should at least have the courage to be straight about it with the American people.

    Hey Bob, thanks for (finally) noticing the "you can keep it" lie. But it and other falsehoods have brought Obamacare to the brink of passage. Why should they stop lying now, simply because you're asking nicely?

  • The Granite Geek points out that the Granite State, and also the rest of the planet, is at perihelion today, a mere 147,098,040 kilometers from the sun. So, enjoy. Although, as you may have noticed, it's not making us much warmer.

    There's another practical effect, though: perihelion makes tide amplitude bigger (although I'm not sure how much). Add to the near-full moon, and the low-pressure storm, you got yer coastal flooding. It's not a great day for a stroll on the beach.

    "Perihelion" is a pretty word, though. If you didn't know better, you might think it was a flower: "He bought her a bouquet of daisies, asters, and perihelions."


Last Modified 2010-01-29 4:05 PM EST

The Big Heat

[4.0
stars] [IMDb Link] [Amazon Link]

A movie from back when they could get away with the tagline: "A hard cop and a soft dame!" 1953, to be specific. Directed by Fritz Lang.

Glenn Ford plays Dave Bannion, the aforementioned hard cop. He's not only hard, he's also one of the few honest cops in his city. Investigating the suicide of a fellow officer, he's suspicious that there's more to the pat case he's presented with. The victim's wife is obviously lying about her husband's motivation. A mysterious mistress shows up, talks to Dave, then is quickly whacked. And then it gets really bad for Dave.

Lee Marvin plays his role of smooth sadistic hitman well; Gloria Grahame (the "soft dame") plays his ill-fated girlfriend, and she has all the best lines. One is pretty famous: "I've been rich and I've been poor. Believe me, rich is better." The DVD includes appreciations from Martin Scorsese and Michael Mann.


Last Modified 2012-10-05 5:13 AM EDT