August 23, 2015 8 Comments
1) Really looking forward to reading this book on the modern history of Autism and Aspergers and the doctors who defined (and mis-defined these diseases). It’s not too far a stretch to say Leo Kanner, the doctor who was the autism expert, made my older brother’s life, far, far harder than it should have been.
2) Nice summary on all the damage total Republican control has done to NC.
3) I love that NC State researchers have created a vomiting machine to study Norovirus.
4) When liberals go too far, they should be called out. As Drum does with those who think there shouldn’t be Chik-Fil-A in an airport.
5) Can’t say I’m surprised to learn that surgery for the most basic form of breast cancer apparently does nothing to improve a woman’s life expectancy. I’m also not surprised that cancer surgeons are arguing that they should still be doing it. I am sad for all the women who needlessly go physically and emotionally traumatic unnecessary treatment.
6) Jordan Weissman on Rubio and Walker’s plans to replace Obamacare:
In theory, there’s nothing wrong with this idea. But it only works if the federal government sets acceptable guidelines about what sorts of plans insurers are allowed to sell. Otherwise, it would almost certainly spur a harmful race to the bottom, in which companies would flock to states with the loosest regulations, and offer cut-rate insurance offering little protection. The likely result, as the Congressional Budget Office argued years ago, is that young, healthy customers would opt for the least expensive options available, while older, sicker Americans would end up paying morefor coverage. Meanwhile, many of those invincible-feeling twentysomethings would find their health insurance wasn’t worth much once they actually needed it. And the chances are that a Walker or Rubio administration wouldn’t do much to stop that from happening…
But the big takeaway is that the establishment GOP contenders are edging toward a consensus alternative to Obamacare, a three-part plan that would potentially make insurance cheaper for the young, more expensive for the old and sick, and depending on how tight-fisted Congress felt, unaffordable for the ill. Thankfully for them, nobody should notice for a while. Everybody is still paying attention to Trump, after all.
And Jon Cohn’s take while I’m at it.
7) Nice explanation of exactly what the deal is with Hillary’s email. Should she have done what she did? Oh, surely not. Is it actually that big a deal? Not really.
8) Awesome, awesome open letter from a gay man to his future in-laws who are unwilling to attend his wedding.
9) Cory Booker admits what so few politicians are willing to– we cannot solve mass incarceration simply by easing up on drug users and non-violent felons. We also need to admit that violent felonies are not as cut and dried as they may seem.
10) Really interesting piece in the Federalist on the Republican Party and white identity politics.
11) Love this from a former CIA analyst on how to help undermine ISIS by scamming them on the internet. Seriously.
12) Can’t say I’m surprised to learn that science now has MRI evidence to show that it is good to read to your young kids. But, if that convinces more people to something all parents should be doing, then that’s a good thing.
13) I was telling my son David about a new colleague and how you can just instantly tell he was a person of great warmth. Then David asked me to define emotional warmth. Trickier than I realized. Here’s the first take I found. And I think this quora take is pretty good. Here’s my own simple definition I came up with after thinking about it: a readiness to share positive emotions with others.
14) Interesting take on the strength of Trump’s support in the polls:
In poll after poll of Republicans, Mr. Trump leads among women, despite having used terms like “fat pigs” and “disgusting animals” to denigrate some of them. He leads among evangelical Christians, despite saying he had never had a reason to ask God for forgiveness. He leads among moderates and college-educated voters, despite a populist and anti-immigrant message thought to resonate most with conservatives and less-affluent voters. He leads among the most frequent, likely voters, even though his appeal is greatest among those with little history of voting.
15) Personally, I find it quite disturbing that the solid majority of pre-natal Down’s Syndrome diagnoses lead to abortion. And it’s great politics to try and pass a law– as Ohio is attempting— that bans abortion if a Down’s Syndrome diagnosis is the reason. But this is so blatantly unconstitutional under Roe and Casey. A Constitutional right based on the right to privacy does not mean you have have to provide an appropriate reason to exercise it.
16) Matt Taibbi on Donald Trump and the unleashed stupidity in American politics. Pretty much a perfect combination. Read this one. (edits for language below by me)
Why there’s suddenly this surge of hatred for immigrants is sort of a mystery. Why Donald Trump, who’s probably never even interacted with an undocumented immigrant in a non-commercial capacity, in particular should care so much about this issue is even more obscure. (Did he trip over an immigrant on his way to the Cincinnati housing development his father gave him as a young man?)
Most likely, immigrants are just collateral damage in Trump’s performance art routine, which is an absurd ritualistic celebration of the coiffed hotshot endlessly triumphing over dirty losers and weaklings.
Trump isn’t really a politician, of course. He’s a strongman act, a ridiculous parody of a Nietzschean superman. His followers get off on watching this guy with (allegedly) $10 billion and a busty mute broad on his arm defy every political and social convention and get away with it. [emphasis mine]
People are tired of rules and tired of having to pay lip service to decorum. They want to stop having to watch what they say and think and just get “crazy,” as Thomas Friedman would put it.
Trump’s campaign is giving people permission to do just that. It’s hard to say this word in conjunction with such a sexually unappealing person, but his message is a powerful aphrodisiac. F**k everything, f**k everyone. F**k immigrants and f**k their filthy lice-ridden kids. And f**k you if you don’t like me saying so.