Later On

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

Archive for February 3rd, 2016

Twitter won’t take action for death threats, but make fun of Twitter and you’re suspended immediately.

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Unbelievable. Or, sadly, believable. We have constructed a strange society and culture. That corporate sensitivity to the slightest affront is one example. Another: There’s a Super Bowl in Palo Alto, and apparently football fans are coamping out in little tents in the area reserved for them close to their cars. Meanwhile, police are chasing away homeless simply trying to camp in tents on an asphalt area. A cop threatened them with, “Those tents had better be off that asphalt in ten minutes or I’m arresting you all,” so the homeless picked up their tents and held them over their heads. Stand-off.

But the clear message is that the exact same thing that is okay for people with money to do is forbidden to people without money, the homeless. It’s a new take on Antaole France’s famous statement, “In its majestic equality, the law forbids rich and poor alike to sleep under bridges, beg in the streets, and steal loaves of bread.” Though nowadays it’s been updated: though the poor still are forbidden to sleep under bridges, beg in the streets, and steal loaves of bread, it’s perfectly okay for the rich to do those things. We’ve abandoned any pretense of an egalitarian society.

Written by LeisureGuy

3 February 2016 at 8:23 pm

The quality of Marco Rubio’s thought and his strong position against religious toleration

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Written by LeisureGuy

3 February 2016 at 8:12 pm

Posted in Daily life

Judgment calls in evaluating Bernie’s healthcare plan: single-payer

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Kevin Drum gets down into the nitty-gritty of evaluating costs of proposed plans. And it’s quite interesting, showing how two people looking at the same plan can differ greatly in their estimation of costs—and thus in answering two key questions, “Is it worth it? and is it fiscally sustainable?”

Written by LeisureGuy

3 February 2016 at 6:15 pm

Bob Elliott, Half of the Deadpan Bob and Ray Comedy Team, Dies at 92

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Written by LeisureGuy

3 February 2016 at 4:27 pm

Posted in Comedy

Tim Conway’s elephant story on the Carol Burnett show

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I didn’t know about this, but The Wife had me look it up and challenged me not to laugh. I failed miserably. The video shows two outtakes:

Written by LeisureGuy

3 February 2016 at 12:48 pm

Posted in Comedy, Video

Elizabeth Warren: American Justice Is ‘Rigged’ In Favor Of The Rich

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Zach Carter reports at Huffington Post:

In a scorching speech from the Senate floor on Wednesday, Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) said the American criminal justice system is rigged in favor of the wealthy, and condemned new legislation that would make it harder to prosecute bank fraud.

“There are two legal systems,” Warren said. “One for the rich and powerful, and one for everyone else.”

Warren’s office issued a report earlier this week documenting 20 cases in which federal officials had enough evidence against corporate malfeasance to issue fines. In most of the cases, companies were not even required to admit guilt. In only one case did a corporate offender go to jail — Massey Energy CEO Don Blankenship, who received a 3-month sentence over a mine disaster that killed 29 people.

“It’s not equal justice when a kid gets thrown in jail for stealing a car, while a CEO gets a huge raise when his company steals billions,” Warren said. “It’s not equal justice when someone hooked on opioids gets locked up for buying pills on the street, but bank executives get off scot-free for laundering nearly a billion dollars of drug cartel money.”

Multiple banks have been busted for laundering drug money, though none of their executives have been charged with crimes.

“One legal system is for big companies, for the wealthy and the powerful. In this legal system, government officials fret about unintended consequences if they are too tough.” But in the second legal system, Warren said, “government enforcement isn’t timid.”

“Just ask the families of Sandra Bland, Freddie Gray and Michael Brown about how aggressive [police and prosecutors] are,” Warren said.

WATCH Warren’s remarks in the video below.

Warren said it is time for Congress to pass criminal justice reform easing the severe sentences for nonviolent offenses. And she called out Republicans for demanding a new amendment that would impose broad “mens rea” reform that would bar prosecutors from pursuing a wide array of corporate offenses, including gross negligence by CEOs.

“Republican politicians love to say they’re tough on crime,” Warren said. “They love to talk about personal responsibility and accountability — when they’re back home in their districts. But right here in Washington they are pushing to make it even easier for corporate criminals to escape justice. …That is shameful.”

Billionaire Republican donors Charles and David Koch have been pushing for the corporate crime relief amendment. . .

Continue reading. Video at the link.

And it’s worse than you think. Later in the article:

Warren also railed against a House bill scheduled for a vote on Thursday that would strip prosecutors of the authority to pursue an array of bank fraud cases in which the bank actually commits a crime. Instead, under the bill, prosecutors would only be able to address cases in which the bank is a victim of the crime.

Written by LeisureGuy

3 February 2016 at 11:58 am

Trump does not readily accept responsibility

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Kevin Drum posts in his Mother Jones blog:

Watching Donald Trump make excuses for yet another business failure is edifying.Here’s Trump on why he lost in Iowa:

I think we could’ve used a better ground game, a term I wasn’t even familiar with….But people told me my ground game was fine. And I think by most standards it was.

Hey, “people” told him his ground game was fine! And it was. By most standards. Anyway, Iowa doesn’t really matter. And Ted Cruz cheated. And the grass was wet. And the sun was in his eyes.

This is Trump all over. He hops from one failure to another, always with a handy excuse. Football is a lousy business. Eastern Airlines ripped me off. The Plaza would have done great if the economy hadn’t turned down. Atlantic City was overbuilt. I never really had anything to do with Trump University.

This is the same guy who thinks that running America will be child’s play. It’s so easy. Just watch. But he’s such a lousy manager that he never bothered to learn what a “ground game” is—which is roughly the equivalent of understanding about food costs if you run a restaurant.

I wouldn’t hire Donald Trump to run a lemonade stand, let alone the United States of America. I don’t think I could stand the pity party. He needs to take his daddy issues to a shrink, not the Oval Office.

Written by LeisureGuy

3 February 2016 at 11:38 am

Posted in Election, GOP

Some interesting reports from the world of law enforcement

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Just a few of Radley Balko’s links this morning:

  • Minnesota police officer who shot unarmed motorcyclist blames “muscle memory,” says, “It was not my conscious choice to discharge my firearm.”
  • Video appears to capture several Connecticut state police officers conspiring to fabricate charges against an open carry advocate. [This one included an interesting statement from one of the cops: when the cop was told that the person recording was on public property, the cop responds that it’s not public property, it’s state property. – LG]

Written by LeisureGuy

3 February 2016 at 11:09 am

Beta test of iKon’s new slant, the X3

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SOTD 2016-02-03

Greg Kahn of iKon asked whether I’d like to be one of the beta testers of their new slant, still under development (and, he says, there is “one  last slight adjustment we may make prior to putting this on the market”). He says this will be priced in the same range as the iKon Shavecraft #102.

I assume the name “X3” is because this will be iKon’s third slant, the first being the stainless slant (available both plain and coated) and the second the #102. The X3, like the stainless slant and unlike the #102, does twist the blade so that the head is symmetrical (and, some hold, that the blade is more rigid, though in fact I’ve not experienced any rigidity problems with conventional razors, none of which twist the blade).

First, though, the prep: I used RazoRock’s top-notch but low-priced synthetic badger brush, which works extremely well, and my pre-reformulation (I suppose that reduces simply to “formulation,” since “pre” and “re” would cancel out) Geo. F. Trumper Violet shaving soap. I got a totally wonderful lather: thick, dense, and creamy.

The X3 head, mounted for this shave on a UFO handle, combines a very mild feeling on the face with a very aggressive cutting action and thus belongs the “mild-aggressive” class of razors that repudiates the idea that razors can be linearly ordered from “mild” at one extreme to “aggressive” at the other. The X3 is extremely comfortable, so demure in feel that you know it won’t nick, but also ruthlessly efficient, wiping off stubble so well that most of my face was BBS after the second pass. (The blade, FWIW, was a Gillette Silver Blue, but you’ll have to do your own blade exploration given how greatly the perception of a blade varies from person to person.)

Three passes, no problems, perfectly smooth face, to which I applied a splash of Hâttric. I don’t know what adjustment Kahn is considering, but I certainly do not detect any obvious need for improvement: this one already ranks with the best of slants.

I have no information on availability, but the price will be in the neighborhood of $70.

UPDATE: I’m told the X3 will be available sometime around March 6-21. Let’s say St. Patrick’s Day.

Written by LeisureGuy

3 February 2016 at 10:01 am

Posted in Shaving

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