Archives January 2010

Thinking outside the beis medrash

Last update on Nov. 11, 2014.

I’ve seen a lot of angst in the Jewish blogosphere over the ever-rising cost of day school tuition; this article, linked by someone on my LJ-friends list, is the latest example of the genre. The problem has a tragic dimension, because of a little-known wrinkle in economics called the Baumol effect.

James Surowiecki explains:

When ...

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A House divided against the other house

Last update on Nov. 11, 2014.

There’s a joke about a junior Democrat in the House of Representatives who, speaking to one of his elders, referred to the Republicans as “the enemy”. The old statesman corrected the youngster: “The Republicans are the opposition. The Senate is the enemy.”

It’s funny because it’s true.

Please call your Representative TODAY

Last update on Nov. 11, 2014.

Democrats in the House are now trying to decide what their next step should be with regard to health care reform. The main options under discussion seem to be:

  • Hold their noses, pass the Senate’s bill, and move on to the next agenda item. (This would require liberal Democrats to hold their noses very ...

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Crossing genres

Last update on Nov. 11, 2014.

I saw a woman on the bus tonight reading Aprenda Inglés con la Ayuda de Dios [Learn English With God’s Help]. It makes sense that someone would come out with such a book; after all, los hispanohablantes should learn to read the Bible in its original language.

Overdrawn at the phone bank

Last update on Nov. 11, 2014.

I spent today volunteering for the Coakley campaign, helping it try and snatch victory from the jaws of defeat (after the Democratic Party spent a month going “jaws of defeat? what jaws of defeat? we can’t possibly lose!”—but every other liberal blog in the country has that rant). I told the Organizing for ...

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An incisor-lickin’ good movie, with a message for our times

Last update on Nov. 11, 2014.

Recently, Rabbi Arthur Waskow, a leader in the Jewish Renewal movement, encouraged “fellow-seekers for peace and healing of the earth” to see Avatar, James Cameron’s film about native resistance to a resource-extraction conglomerate, and to connect that film with the upcoming Jewish holiday of Tu B’Shevat.

In the same vein, I encourage my environmentally ...

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Robes in the ’hood

Last update on Nov. 11, 2014.

The Harry Potter series was partly inspired by a peculiarly British literary genre: stories of boys’ adventures in public1 school. If J. K. Rowling had been American, perhaps she would have been inspired by a peculiarly American sort of educational drama, and come up with this.

1 George Bernard Shaw once remarked that the ...

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Weak tea

Last update on Nov. 11, 2014.

Hall’s Third Rule of Politics states: “Constituency always outweighs consistency.” Thus, activists who fly the banner of the “Tea Party” have been eager to condemn “socialist” government spending. But the tea-partiers in Michigan have found one government spending program they like: the auto-industry bailout.

Joan Fabiano, a tea-partier and former GM employee, justified her ...

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Dances With Monotheism

Last update on Nov. 11, 2014.

Over the past few weeks, I’ve seen some controversy in political and SF blogs regarding a certain Hollywood movie, in which a white American human takes on the form of a blue-skinned alien. I was reminded of this when I read last week’s parsha (Exodus 1:1–6:1), because one could argue that the ...

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I’ve got bad news and good news

Last update on Nov. 11, 2014.

The bad news is, if a certain industry rag can be trusted, jobs in the information technology sector suck.

The good news is, if a certain job-search site can be trusted, jobs in just about every other sector suck worse.

via Crooked Timber and Hacker News

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