Go ahead, take the rest of the day off

POLITICO's Cartoon Carousel: The nation's cartoonists' take on the week in politics - Photos - 1 of 20 - POLITICO.com

But you can see who gets the girl

Coney Island : The New Yorker

Who says Congresscritters do nothing?

Congressmen aim to block Northwestern players push to unionize | Early & Often

"The brief filed on behalf of the congressmen claims the decision ‘improperly applied principles from the workplace with the educational environment.’"

Sounds to me like they ought to go back to school and play a little more football themselves.

(And yes, of course, they’re all R’s.)

A post-July4 pop quiz

I have a big American flag (I didn’t display it yesterday because I didn’t want it to get wet) with 45 stars.

Question: How old is it (at a minimum)?

Extra credit: Name the five missing states in order of admission.

Answers in comments.

Food fight

Michelle Obama fights GOP on school lunch rules - Education - Boston.com

"‘‘I'm going to fight until the bitter end to make sure that every kid in this country continues to have the best nutrition that they can have in our schools,’’ the first lady said…"

Food fight

Michelle Obama fights GOP on school lunch rules - Education - Boston.com

"‘‘I'm going to fight until the bitter end to make sure that every kid in this country continues to have the best nutrition that they can have in our schools,’’ the first lady said…"

Let it never be said we can't spot a good investment

What did $7 billion spent on opium eradication in Afghanistan buy? More opium. - CSMonitor.com

"The $7 billion US program to eradicate poppy cultivation there over the past decade has been a flop. 

"The country is today the world's largest supplier of opium…It accounts for about three-quarters of the global recreational supply, and surging Afghan production is one reason why street heroin prices have been falling across the globe."


Come on, kid, spit it out

We, the people are violent and filled with rage: A nation spinning apart on its Independence Day - Salon.com

"The moral silence and often bankruptcy of states and markets leaves citizen-leaders to be nourished and trained all the more intensively in institutions that stand somewhat apart from the state and markets [blah blah]…."

And it's not from the Onion

Wolfowitz Sees Chalabi as Viable Iraq Leader Even With Iran Ties - Bloomberg

Hard to believe, huh? But true. What rock are these guys crawling out from under now?

This is as close as we're getting…

…to anything that looks even remotely like fireworks today. It's raining, not a hard rain but a nice, slow soaker, warm enough to feel kind of good if it happens to be raining right on you but not so good you'd want to go stand in a puddle of it just to see starburst or two. We're looking foreward to a quiet evening here in our little hollow, which is just fine.


You weren't going to work over the weekend anyway…

…so you can save this for next week:

A complete catalog of U.S. Government publicatons in electronic form.

It’s hard to think of something the Government hasn’t published a book on, or at least a pamphlet, and some of them are even worth a look. One of my favorites from the old dead-trees era was a booklet on grilling shellfish. How great is that?

Here's the webcam page for…

Topsail Beach, NC, which is sitting in the predicted path of the hurricane named Arthur, expected to arrive before too long and more or less make the start of the holiday weekend pretty soggy. (Map here.)

And this is the guy…

The Ultra-Simple App That Lets Anyone Encrypt Anything | Threat Level | WIRED

"Encryption is hard. When NSA leaker Edward Snowden wanted to communicate with journalist Glenn Greenwald via encrypted email, Greenwald couldn’t figure out the venerable crypto program PGP even after Snowden made a 12-minute tutorial video."

…Greenwald…who decides what should be published and what not from among the trove of leaked NSA docs? Really?

Do not read first

Tokyo toilet exhibit leaves visitors flushed | Watch the video - Yahoo News [VIDEO]

"A toilet exhibition opens in Tokyo with everything from a giant toilet slide to a singing toilet choir."

Or maybe at all.



…has arrived right on schedule…hot and muggy and sweaty, smashing thunderboomers and a tropical storm blowing up the coast (it ought to just graze the Cape)…glorious, in word. And a handful of excellent peaches (shipped in, alas, from California). The local peaches aren’t ready yet but the local strawberries are, big and juicy and sweet. Summer’s for me.

A pack of excellent pictures here

White Wolf: The Mohawks Who Built Manhattan (Photos)

"For generations, Mohawk Indians have left their reservations in or near Canada to raise skyscrapers in the heart of New York City."

Why not just cancel the rest of the week

Folkstreams » The Best of American Folklore Films

"A National Preserve of Documentary Films about American Roots Cultures"

Trucker busts cop

Driver turns tables on trooper, stopping him for speeding (Video)

"Brian Miner was travelling through Illinois when he allegedly observed and unidentified state trooper travelling at an unsafe speed on wet roads while talking on his cellphone…"

Move over, John Henry: Geezer ties algorithm

Quiz: Can You Tell What Makes a Good Tweet? - NYTimes.com

Which isn’t bad, since the algorithm is touted to outscore the average earthling by a point or two. 

And no, it wasn’t just dumb luck. More like smart luck.


Incest in the Age of Media

OK then

Dropbox Adds View-Only Shared Folders To Seduce Stiff Enterprises | TechCrunch

"If that sounds a bit boring, that’s the point. "

Oh come on, that's not fair!

Why Eating Fruits and Veggies Won't Make You Thin - Yahoo News

"'Eat all the vegetables and fruit you want, but you have to cut out more calories from other foods,' to lose weight…"

Books, books

Reading Guide: Novels About World War One | New Republic

And plenty of non-fiction as well. 

Umm, that's only seven

Techmeme: Apple's nine new CarPlay partners include Audi, Chrysler, Dodge, Fiat, Jeep, Mazda, and more http://t.co/exA46WfG6P http://t.co/0roNafKh4Y

At least it's good for something

The glorious future of TV is now. “Community” will not die - Salon.com

" The Internet delivers miracles to the true believers."

And the one thing sex should not be is fun, sniffs GOPper

U.S. Senator Agrees With Supreme Court Decision Because Women Use Birth Control 'Largely For Recreational Behavior' | ThinkProgress

"During an appearance on Sirius XM’s The Wilkow Majority, host Andrew Wilkow argued that the real question in Burwell v. Hobby Lobby Stores Inc., was about ‘whether or not a person who runs a business should be forced to provide something that is largely for recreational behavior, if it goes against their religious beliefs.’
"Lee, responded by saying ‘Yea, that’s right, that’s right…’ "

Well. OK, he didn’t actually say that. Himself. Or the other thing either. But that doesn’t mean we can’t get all snarky about it, does it?


Whimsy from the Supremes (well, some)

3 Lies About Birth Control That Were Just Reinforced By The Hobby Lobby Ruling | ThinkProgress

"The justices who joined the Court’s 5-4 opinion didn’t appear to be concerned about scientific evidence…. Monday’s decision, written by Justice Samuel Alito, simply allows the business owners to follow their own definition of abortion. ‘The owners of the businesses have religious objections to abortion, and according to their religious beliefs the four contraceptive methods at issue are abortifacients,’ he writes. ‘If the owners comply with the HHS mandate, they believe they will be facilitating abortions.’"

You could fly a B-52 through that hole and not scratch the wings. Good times!

Like us on Guineapigbook

Everything We Know About Facebook's Secret Mood Manipulation Experiment - Robinson Meyer - The Atlantic

"The study found that by manipulating the News Feeds displayed to 689,003 Facebook users users, it could affect the content which those users posted to Facebook. More negative News Feeds led to more negative status messages, as more positive News Feeds led to positive statuses."

The guy just can't catch a break, huh?

George Zimmerman loses libel suit against NBC - Orlando Sentinel

"Circuit Judge Debra S. Nelson ruled that the former Neighborhood Watch volunteer is entitled to no money from the media giant."

So it's not the business itself who's the jerk, it's the guys who own it

Supreme Court says employers with religious objections can refuse to pay for contraception - Nation - The Boston Globe

"The court stressed that its ruling applies only to corporations that are under the control of just a few people in which there is no essential difference between the business and its owners."

No, it's not from the Onion

Russia to the rescue in Iraq? Moscow delivers jet fighters to Baghdad - CSMonitor.com

"MOSCOW — Russian fighter planes and military advisers have begun arriving in Iraq to help stem the advance of ISIS forces, after embattled Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki complained that the US was too slow in fulfilling its pledges of air support."

This right here is what the acronym LOL was invented for.

Everything's up to date in Kansas City

Charlatans, Cranks and Kansas - NYTimes.com

"The real lesson from Kansas is the enduring power of bad ideas, as long as those ideas serve the interests of the right people."

Dude, this is just plain sad

Chicago Weekend Shootings Tracker for June 27-29, 2014 | Voices

You mean, just plain old Bud?


"Among all our casual topics, whether someone likes the taste of beer is the single best predictor of if he or she has sex on the first date."

Why doesn't anybody have a normal name any more?

These times of ours | Baby Name Wizard

"Too many parents are naming their kids after movie stars, or making up 'weird' names without meanings. The new names are unfamiliar and impossible to pronounce. The traditional, beloved names of past generations seem to have disappeared overnight."

Who said there are no geology jokes?



Where is Jonathan Swift when we need him?

Undernews: Obama wants $2 billion more to kick those kids back across the border

"Mr. Obama will send a letter on Monday to alert Congress that he will seek an emergency appropriation for rapidly expanding border enforcement actions and humanitarian assistance programs to cope with the influx…"

A Modest Proposal.

Warren G. Harding campaign slogan

Harding was the first Presidential candidate to hire a professional ad man, Chicagoan Albert Lasker, an advertising pioneer, and this is one of the slogans he came up with:

“Let’s be done with wiggle and wobble!”

(Cummins, Joseph (2012-01-17). Anything for a Vote: Dirty Tricks, Cheap Shots, and October Surprises in U.S. Presidential Campaigns (Kindle Location 2368). Quirk Books. Kindle Edition.)

Harding’s opponent was Democrat James Cox, apparently the first John Kerry.


Facebook Conducted Psychological Experiments On Unknowing Users | ThinkProgress

"The latest way that Facebook has been peeking into its users’ personal lives may be the most surprising yet: Facebook researches have published a scientific paper that reveals the company has been conducting psychological experiments on its users to manipulate their emotions."

Coming soon to an Iraq near you

US drone killings: 'a secret war governed by secret law'? - CSMonitor.com

"Indeed, the American government takes the view that it has a legal right to use force in foreign sovereign states when these states are ‘unwilling or unable’ to take what the US considers to be ‘appropriate action’ to eliminate ‘imminent threats,’ reports the Stimson Center…"

(Unless said “imminent threats” turn out to be guys we like. Then, not. Also, I’m thinking about calling myself the Compton Center.)