Later On

A blog written for those whose interests more or less match mine.

Archive for June 5th, 2007

If you like a BIG kitty, try a Savannah cat

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They run around 33 lbs. More info.

Written by LeisureGuy

5 June 2007 at 1:02 pm

Posted in Cats

O’Reilly transparently lies

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But makes a big deal of it. That is, he tells a lie that’s easily determined to be a lie, but doesn’t tell it in passing but features it. From ThinkProgress:

Bill O’Reilly calls the New York Times “quasi-socialistic” and has placed the newspaper on his enemies list. Last night, he devoted an entire segment of his show to attacking the Times for not covering the arrests made in an alleged JFK airport terrorist plot on the front page.

“In Sunday’s Times, editor Bill Keller put the JFK story on — ready — page 37, right above a story about kids playing at Fuddrucker’s restaurant,” O’Reilly said. He claimed the Times “isn’t real concerned about Muslim guys allegedly trying to set up another 9/11.”

O’Reilly explained the conspiracy: “The war on terror is perceived to be a Republican strong point,” and since the Times “desperately wants a Democrat to be elected president in 2008, The Times is going to play down every terror story unless we get attacked again.” O’Reilly called this “the hallmark of the far left.” Watch it.

One problem: the New York Times did cover the JFK terror plot on the front page of its Sunday edition. You wouldn’t know it from watching O’Reilly, who chose to show only the top fold of the front page during his broadcast. “Now I’m not making this up,” he told his viewers. “You see it. This is not the Colbert Report. This is The Factor and this is the fact.” But O’Reilly is lying.

Here’s the front page as shown on O’Reilly:

oreillynyt.JPG

But the Sunday New York Times did feature a headline on the alleged JFK terror plots on its front page. It was just below the fold, which O’Reilly chose to hide.

nytscan1.jpg

Written by LeisureGuy

5 June 2007 at 9:35 am

Posted in GOP, Media

Libby: 30 months in prison, $250K fine

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Read more.

Written by LeisureGuy

5 June 2007 at 9:18 am

Information in a consumer-driven economy

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I had a long discussion with one Geoffrey about the government’s role in giving consumers an even break with respect to corporations and businesses. In general, he wasn’t having it: consumers can make their decisions and any corporation that doesn’t play fair will be punished in the marketplace. (This position ignores historical fact, but makes logical sense.)

So things like building codes (which allow the consumer lacking building expertise to make choices with some assurance that the basics are okay) and nutrition labels (which allow the consumer without a laboratory to make informed choices about processed foods) are complete beyond the pale in Geoffrey’s world view.

I thought of this recently in shopping for molasses. I saw two kinds, and really didn’t understand the difference. I was about to go for the one with more intriguing title, when The Wife started to read the nutrition labels:

Barbados  Blackstrap

With this information, a good (i.e., informed) choice is possible. It’s worth noting that the industry fought bitterly against providing this information.

So I see the government has a good role in providing an environment that provides not only consumer protection but also consumer information. Businesses tend to be totally profit focused—and quite often near-term profit  focused— and don’t like this, but that’s why businesses have been subject to government regulation.

Written by LeisureGuy

5 June 2007 at 8:42 am

More good words on Condi’s Iran initiative

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From The Washington Note:

I have just come by a lucid, excellent analysis of the recent “formal negotiations” between Iran and the U.S. which took place in Baghdad written by Iran expert and Columbia University/School of International and Public Affairs scholar Gary Sick.

I reprint this analysis with permission, as it is not currently available on the web:

US-Iran Talks, 3 June 2007 by Gary Sick

On Monday [May 28], the United States and Iran sat down together in the office of the Iraqi prime minister in Baghdad to discuss mutual concerns about Iraqi security. It marked a turning point in the hostile but impersonal relations between the two countries that many had feared would turn to war. That has not happened. In case there was any doubt about it, Condoleezza Rice said on Friday that “The president of the United States has made it clear that we are on a course that is a diplomatic course,” and she refused to speculate on a military option. Skepticism is still in order, but it is evident that something is happening in US policy. Here is my own take in the form of a Q & A:

Q — Is this meeting really a big deal?

A — It is a big deal. Iran and the United States have not met face-to-face in a formally acknowledged bilateral meeting of substance (even in the presence of a mediator) since before the hostage crisis in November 1979.
The respective domestic policies and political sensitivities of both countries have conspired — the word is deliberate and accurate — to prevent such a meeting for nearly 28 years.

Q — Then why now?

Continue reading.

Written by LeisureGuy

5 June 2007 at 7:48 am

Wow! No wonder Wilkinson ate Gillette’s lunch.

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This morning I lathered up with Mama Bear’s Tuscan Memories:

Originally blended as a remembrance of Tuscany, this contains pine, spearmint, eucalyptus, juniper berry, peppermint, oak moss and bourbon geranium.

I decided to use the Plisson HMW 12, and got a fine lather. Then to the new stuff: a genuine “Made in England” Wilkinson Sword blade, in a red-tipped Gillette Super Speed.

The blade is amazing: smooth as silk, and cutting a clean swath through the stubble. It is true what the guy said:

In the 1950’s Personna (GEM/Ever-Ready etc) invented the Stainless Steel Blade and marketed them for their single edge razors. The blades were sharper but they found that the edge deteriorated quickly and became quite rough to shave with.

Wilkinson Sword was in the forefront with the technology to coat the edge with Platinum, Chromium, PTFE (Teflon), etc., for a smoother shave. Wilkinson held many of the patents and grabbed a considerable proportion of Gillette’s market share ever so quickly in the late 50’s early 60’s — basically, WS blades were noticeably better. And so Gillette made a deal for them to use Wilkinson technology. All of this helped in the demise of the DE as Gillette’s patents were coming to an end and they were no longer in the controlling seat. Gillette decided to take a new direction in the early 1960’s and cartridge systems would be the end result.

So that’s why millions of men are getting crappy, expensive shaves today: because Gillette couldn’t keep up. I think Wilkinson Sword Made in England blades may be my regular blade henceforth (though, alas, the English plant has been shut down and production moved to Germany—and I hear that the German blades are not as good).

Written by LeisureGuy

5 June 2007 at 7:10 am

Posted in Shaving

And, speaking of knives

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The Wife’s Brother sends along a link to this site of very nice handmade knives.

Written by LeisureGuy

5 June 2007 at 6:21 am

Posted in Daily life, Technology

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