URLs du Jour



  • Have you ever wondered what a Supreme Court amicus curiae brief from the Cato Institute might look like if P.J. O'Rourke helped write it? Wonder no more. Trust me, it's hilarious, and you don't need to know your amici from your curiae to have a good time.

    It's written for a current case, "Susan B. Anthony List v. Driehaus", a suit challenging Ohio's law that (to use USA Today's language) "bars candidates and issue groups from lying in their campaigns."

    Here's the sample everyone is quoting:

    After all, where would we be without the knowledge that Democrats are pinko-communist flag-burners who want to tax churches and use the money to fund abortions so they can use the fetal stem cells to create pot-smoking lesbian ATF agents who will steal all the guns and invite the UN to take over America? Voters have to decide whether we’d be better off electing Republicans, those hateful, assault-weapon-wielding maniacs who believe that George Washington and Jesus Christ incorporated the nation after a Gettysburg reenactment and that the only thing wrong with the death penalty is that it isn’t administered quickly enough to secular- humanist professors of Chicano studies.

    Indeed. Double your money back if it's not the funniest thing you read all day. (As a bonus, it makes serious points in defense of the First Amendment.)

  • Continuing the funny: excerpts from Dave Barry's new book here (Dave muses on his daughter Becoming A Woman) and here (Dave reviews 50 Shades of Gray). From the former:

    If it were up to me, our house would be surrounded by giant (but humane) traps baited with some kind of bait that would be attractive to 13-year-old boys, such as fireworks or shorts that are even baggier than the shorts they’re already wearing. Every now and then we’d hear the loud THWONK of a steel door slamming shut, indicating that a 13-year-old boy had come too close to the house. I would then go outside and, after a stern warning, drive the boy out to the Everglades and release him into the wild.

    I know how he feels.

  • And it keeps getting funnier, assuming your ribs are tickled by yet another example of President Obama's illegal, politically-motivated rewriting of Obamacare. Key point:

    The explanation for the rumored delay is purely political. There's not even a pretense of a policy justification.

    In other words: it's designed to keep as many Democrats as possible in elective office. Because if they implemented the law they actually passed, it would send (for example) Jeanne Shaheen back to Madbury.

    Here's hoping that happens anyway.

  • Both xkcd and Slashdot look at the amazing (and somewhat sad) story of the spacecraft ISEE-3/ICE, launched in 1978 (almost 36 years ago), explored the outer magnetosphere, encountered a couple of comets. The mission was declared over in 1997. And NASA turned it off.

    Or tried to. But now its solar orbit is bringing it near Earth again, and—to everyone's surprise—it's still alive!

    But—here's the sad part—NASA can't talk to it any more; the transmitting equipment it used is long gone, and it's too expensive to reconstruct it.