This morning's sermonette

Internet security: Face the facts (Opinion) - CNN.com

"We should demand better and more usable security from the companies we do business with and whose services we use online. But because we don't have any real visibility into those companies' security, we should demand our government start regulating the security of these companies as a matter of public safety."

Geronimo: That time the beavers attacked Idaho

Extreme adventure: 1950s film shows beavers parachuting into Idaho backcountry - The Washington Post

"It must have been a bizarre sight: Beavers in boxes parachuting down into Idaho's Frank Church — River of No Return Wilderness Area. They were on a mission: Build dams and create habitats for other species, such as deer, elk and moose."

Sounds like a job for Spielberg to me. 


Are you a democratic socialist (OMG!)

Are you a democratic socialist like Bernie Sanders? Take the quiz. - The Washington Post



It's going to be a long, long, extra long year

Insiders: Trump nomination looking more likely - POLITICO

“'Not sure why anyone should be so surprised that Trump's campaign is getting so serious in terms of infrastructure build-out,' a New Hampshire Democrat said. 'Trump may be a jerk but he is an extremely successful jerk.…'”                                                         "

A little NFL with your breakfast coffee

Yahoo Mobile Chief Adam Cahan Talks Candidly About Their Upcoming NFL Live Stream Preparations | Decider 

"For a mobile audience, there really is no prime time anymore."

Maybe on Sunday you really can watch football all day long.

I don't usually pay much attention to this guy…

The real loser of the Benghazi hearings? America | New York Post

"Indeed, my reading of Biden’s decision is that he knows the FBI investigation into Clinton’s private server and handling of classified information will not lead to an indictment."

…but this little tidbit may actually have some merit.


That was Tuesday

Cubs fans will do — and eat — anything to break the ‘Curse of the Billy Goat’ - The Washington Post

"Billy Goat Tavern has been one of the famed local Chicago eateries for decades and it’s not a surprise to see the restaurant cleverly promote what has become modern day sports folklore,” the team said in a statement to The Washington Post on Tuesday, “but there will be one bottom that won’t see a seat in Wrigley Field. We don’t allow animals in the ballpark and we don’t believe in curses."

Today isn’t.

Spare us your purple prose

Mets keep rolling, right into World Series, by sweeping aside Cubs - The Washington Post

"As alive as the Cubs may have felt with winter closing in, the New York Mets are in full suffocation mode, extinguishing hope with a fire hose."

Politicians are scarier than zombies, by far

Forget ghosts and zombies this Halloween. Americans’ greatest fear is their government. - The Washington Post

"(Of the 88 fears that survey participants were asked to rank, whooping cough and zombies rank as the bottom two.)"

At the library this morning

All Hillary all the time

Benghazi Committee Walks Fine Line in Questioning Hillary Clinton - The New York Times

"Mr. Gowdy has said that he has uncovered new details about the attacks, but that he has not released them."

Here, we’re just moping about the Cubs. 

But buy Bucky? That's evil

Welcome to the Wholly Owned Koch Subsidiary Formerly Known as Wisconsin | Mary Bottari

"Over and over again in a marathon hearing last week, citizens asked the legislature: who is asking for these bills?"

H/T Charlie from (the former) Wisconsin

The goat that hexed the Cubs, as we've pointed out before…

Daniel Murphy sets postseason homer record as Mets advance to World Series.

"New York Mets second baseman Daniel Murphy is having one of the greatest postseasons in the history of this or any planet, and now he's going to the World Series…"

…was named Murphy.

Should have seen this coming, bunky. It was there all along.

Runs in the family

Jeb Bush thinks favorite superhero Supergirl is hot.

"Saying the right thing at the right time hasn’t always been Bush’s specialty, making him a rare breed of Biden-esque politician who manages to rise (almost) to the top while consistently saying things out loud that probably shouldn’t be said out loud."


Cubs look pretty cubby in first inning

Mets score 4, bring rookie pitcher: 3 up, 3 down, done with that. 

Which may or may not be a good thing

Donald Trump Speaks at a 4th Grade Level - Election 2016 Speeches

"As the Globe reminds us, President George Washington's 'Farewell Address' in 1796 was written at a post-graduate level of 17.9, while Abraham Lincoln's 1863 'Gettysburg Address' was delivered in language at an 11th-grade level. John F. Kennedy's 1961 inaugural—'ask not what your country can do for you'—ticked back up to 13.9, but President Obama, much revered as a public speaker, gave a speech at his inauguration that eighth-graders could easily understand. Other studies have shown declines in the speech level of members of Congress as well."

(You can calculate your own Flesch-Kincaid readability in Microsoft Word.)

Can you spell "fat chance"?

Let's See What Conservatives Have to Say About a Real War on Christianity

"This, right here, is a war on Christianity. C'mon down, Bill O’Reilly.… I'm sure Mike Huckabee and "Bobby" Jindal and the newly evangelical Jeb (!) will be right behind you. "

Let's get that fixed

Donald Trump Is Doomed And/Or Invincible | FiveThirtyEight

"You know who we haven’t talked about in a while? Donald Trump. "

Whoa! That's a lot of tails (to say nothing of brats)

Lucas Museum approval on hold after snag with the Bears

"If tailgating is not allowed on the top level of the new garage, that will leave Bears fans will less than 1,000 spots for pre- and post-game tailgating."

No kidding

Netanyahu says Palestinian leader gave Hitler idea for Holocaust | New York Post

" Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu provoked controversy Wednesday…"

NYPost discovers whole new category of news

Ciara: I’m not pregnant with Russell Wilson’s baby | Page Six

What? In a barn?

Wisconsin man had sex with donkey in barn: cops - NY Daily News


The very best thing about this National League playoff season is…

Pardon the Disorientation, but the Mets Are on the Verge of the World Series - The New York Times

"The cognitive dissonance is considerable. Three months ago, two lifelong Mets fans — my son, Nick, and I — sat high in the Citi Field stands. On that languid summer evening, we watched a mercy killing, as the Dodgers’ Clayton Kershaw mowed down the hitless wonders known as the Metropolitans, 3-0.…"

…if fortunes were reversed, and the Cubs were leading the series 3-0, the Chicago and New York newspapers could just trade stories and it’d all work. 

Also the Mets happen to be the only other team I’ve ever thought of—this in the early 1960’s—as “my team.” I’m just an underdog kind of guy.

I'm really not all that big a baseball fan…

…but when they call your team “adorable,” Dude, that’s cold.

With the Cubs in a 3-0 hole in the NLCS, Joe Maddon has a tough task - The Washington Post

"Watching the Cubs in the playoffs is like rooting for a dynamite juggler on a roller-coaster. Chicago fans cheered and roared, but underneath every sound, no matter how loud, was the undertone of extremely nice people simply begging and pleading.

"As the T-shirts on fans all around Wrigley proclaimed, 'Just One Before I Die.' So, no pressure."

Things look pretty grim at Wrigley field. Still, today is the day Doc Brown and Marty McFly arrive from back in the ‘80s and that might make the difference right there. Of course the movie never answered the question, if the Cubs start winning, where does the world go from there?

Be careful what you ask for.


Cubs go down by 3

Planet begins slow drift back toward natural orbit. 

But wait til tomorrow. 

Looking up

Like the football Bears…

… I'm in a hibernating mood. It’s cold and damp and dark around here all of a sudden—there’s still plenty of color but still—and I can’t get out of bed. It’s some seasonal thing. All I want to do is sleep. And make a pot of massively good pea soup. Good idea.

Ain't easy being a mum these days

Crybaby Hollywood Brat Joins Al Qaeda - The Daily Beast

"I’m glad he’s associated with al Qaeda rather than [ISIS], but obviously I worry."

But, in the end, doesn't shoot anybody

Rugby player goes on drunken rampage after failing to pick up women, police say | New York Post

No wonder Rugby’s not a big sport in the U.S.

Astoundingly, the Donald gets it right

Donald Trump, George W. Bush, and Responsibility for 9/11 - The Atlantic

"There’s no way of knowing for sure if Bush could have stopped the September 11 attacks. But that’s not the right question. The right question is: Did Bush do everything he could reasonably have to stop them, given what he knew at the time? And he didn’t. It’s not even close."

And Andrew Rosenthal of the NYTimes weighs in with Donald Trump Gets It Right For a Change.


Say it ain't so, Joe

Lions beat Bears for first Detroit win of season


Mustard Minute: Lions superfans are not happy about being ejected | SI.com

"Matthew Spring was not going to take that injustice lying down, and so he posted a very emotional video to Facebook (Warning: contains some adult language), although his sincerity was somewhat undercut by the fact that he was wearing rhinestone shutter shades and a stuffed animal lion on his head."

Things were hopping in New York

Visiting Kangaroo Breaks Loose in Staten Island | TIME

"We didn’t know what it was. We thought it was a deer."

Is my math right here?

AP Exclusive: Under Clinton, State's cybersecurity suffered

""We have a strong cybersecurity program, successfully defeating almost 100 percent of the 4 billion attempted intrusions we experience each year," spokesman Mark Toner said."

0.01% of 4 billion is 400,000? Something like that?

So if State is successful at defeating “almost 100 percent” of intrusions into their data systems there still might be…I don’t know…thousands? hundreds”…succeeding? 

And you thought your team had a bad day

Video: Colts call perhaps worst play in NFL history - NY Daily News

"They ran one of those trick plays — an attempt at a fake punt — where everyone lines up wide and they just leave the center and a player to take the snap — but didn’t seem to have much of a plan after that."

OK, wait a minute here

Teen stoner says he hacked CIA director’s AOL account | New York Post

"[The] problem with these older-generation guys is that they don’t know anything about cybersecurity, and as you can see, it can be problematic."

AOL? Really? 

Dude, I know. You’re right about the geezers. But even so. 

Didn’t we read a while back John Kerry uses an AOL account? Except for the Secretary of State and the head of the CIA who uses AOL any more? And why?

Couldn’t they at least upgrade to Gmail like, you know, Petraeus? (Oh wait, he was the head of the CIA too, wasn’t he?)

The perfect New England headline

Yes, yes! We'll pay! And we'll deserve to pay. It'll serve us right.

(Also you might ask who heats with oil any more, but you don’t live in New England, do you.)



Still catching up: If you haven't read Stephen King's essay on guns called, well, Guns, you should. It's at the Kindle store for 99 cents, and takes about 30 minutes to read. You could read it twice in an hour, no extra charge.