Friday, September 24, 2010

Big Bag o unusual Blog Links

The effect of political connections: say you're a former Congressional staffer and you become a lobbyist. When your former boss leaves the Senate, your income goes down by over 50%.

Yglesias continues to excuse and praise Republicans for being two-faced
As you see here with Ryan (and in the generally Calvinball like approach the GOP has taken to the reconciliation question over the years), Republicans are determined to follow the actual laws and rules. When in the minority, they don’t rebel. They don’t murder their political opponents, they don’t organize coups d’├ętat. What they do is they try to win legislative battles through all the tools at their disposal. And when in the majority they . . . do the same thing. They believe, strongly, that letting wealthy businessmen get what they want is good for America, and they go about doing that with seriousness of purpose. Many Democrats, by contrast, seem to believe that their highest responsibility is to make themselves look good, to preen for the cameras, or to maximize their own personal authority.
But they’re wrong and Ryan is right. The procedural rules are levers to be deployed on behalf of important goals, not holy writ to which policy objectives should be subordinated.
Extra points for using Calvinball in a sentence.

Two great websites with interesting maps: one of US city segregation, the other of European stereotypes (the rest of Europe according to France, according to Germany, etc.)

How swimming lessons saved Taiwan. No, really. [if only I could remember to whom I tip my hat...]

A gathering of over 10,000 West African LDS youth, many of them discovering theater for the first time as they act out religious scenes. Lots of colorful, engaging pictures of the event.

It's called "The economics of Star Wars" but really it's the accounting of Star Wars, and only the revenue portion at that.

Blattman compares and contrasts rural vs. urban living and the advantages of each, coming out in favor of urban. I share his skepticism of the overly romanticized rural but that isn't enough to convince me.

Asian immigrants and their effect on cuisine:
South Korean investment in the U.S. got a major boost in 2008 when the federal government decided to no longer require visas for visiting South Korean citizens. The move has already shown results. For the first six months of this year, some 450,000 South Koreans entered the U.S., a 38% rise over the same period last year. [This worries Korean-American restaurant owners who will have to step up their game or be outshone.]
And a use for extra garden produce: Woman fends off bear with zucchini.

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