Quick hits part II

Late.  But as promised.

1) Great Linda Greenhouse column on the politicization of the Supreme Court.

The problem is not only that the court is too often divided but that it’s too often simply wrong: wrong in the battles it picks, wrong in setting an agenda that mimics a Republican Party platform, wrong in refusing to give the political system breathing room to make fundamental choices of self-governance.

2) I’ve been really intrigued by Give Directly since learning about them on Planet Money (I think).  I’ve been meaning to make a decent-sized charitable donation lately (some found money I want to put to good use) and I think these guys might be in the lead.  Nice explanation from Vox.

3) As discussed, conservatives always respond with doom and gloom as to how cutting emissions will ruin the economy.  Turns out a number of states have already made major carbon emissions cuts and seen solid economic growth at the same time.  But perhaps we should just listen to Fox news instead of evidence.

4) This new book on race by Nicholas Lehman is just odd.  Impressive takedown from political scientists extraordinaire, Andrew Gelman.

5) Thomas Mann takes political scientists to task for pretending the growing asymmetry is equally the fault of both parties.  Not guilty!  Mostly, though, a great summary of all the evidence that this is undoubtedly mostly a Republican phenomenon.

6) Tim Noah on how government privatization hurts the middle class.

7) I read the comics 2-4 days per week and when I do, Pearls Before Swine is a favorite.  Alas, I missed the days where Calvin and Hobbes’ Bill Watterson took over (and yes, that is easily the greatest comic strip ever).  I’m really curious if I would have realized this was Watterson’s distinctive style.  Now, I just know.  Great story.

8) The political friendship of Jackie Robinson and Richard Nixon.

9) We basically wouldn’t have the Common Core without Bill Gates.  To which I say, hooray for Bill Gates.  It’s not perfect, but it’s a damn sight better than the status quo ante.

10) I actually think tonight’s Game of Thrones was the most boring in the series.  Lots of action sure, but I suspect I am far from alone in just not really caring about this plotline compared to the others.

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Bill Maher on open carry

Pure awesomeness

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