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Profile Information

Gender: Male
Hometown: Nokomis, FL
Home country: US
Member since: Wed Nov 5, 2014, 01:58 AM
Number of posts: 27,665

About Me

Retired 3x, living comfortably on the Gulf Coast, biking, beachwalking, lifting free weights, eating mostly properly, keeping my mind active, in my seventh decade, intending to give Methuselah a run for the record...

Journal Archives

Jonathan Gruber, the most influential economist at 2014’s end

He’s been called “an insomniac with Tourrette’s syndrome,” a “super egghead” and “an adviser who was never on  staff,” and now Jonathan Gruber can add most buzzed-about economist to that list.

According to an analysis commissioned by the Economist, Gruber was the most influential economist on the Internet during the 90-day period that ended December 11, 2014.

The publication tasked the startup Appinions with analyzing the online influence of 500 different economists during this window of time.

Specifically, the company looked at the degree to which each economics professional was covered by mainstream media outlets, blogs and on social media.

Fatwa on fat...ty AYCE buffets...

A Saudi cleric has issued a fatwa, or religious edict, against all-you-can-eat buffets, setting tongues wagging in the kingdom and, presumably, stomaches rumbling.

The cleric, Saleh al-Fawzan, made the anti-buffet proclamation during a broadcast on al-Atheer, a Quranic TV station in Saudi Arabia, Al Arabiya News reported Thursday.

"Whoever enters the buffet and eats for 10 or 50 riyals without deciding the quantity they will eat is violating Sharia law," Fawzan reportedly stated.

Tags that slipped by at the DMV...


Hillary rocked with left hook as liberals side with Elizabeth Warren for 2016

She is one of the most active — and most partisan — senators in the chamber, which is part of what makes Sen. Elizabeth Warren so attractive to the progressive groups pleading with her to enter the 2016 presidential race.

The freshman senator has amassed a solidly liberal record, but it’s the issues on which she has taken the lead that are winning over the Democratic Party’s left wing, who say she is a fighter more than anything else. She organized a rebellion, although it was quickly snuffed out, against loosening Wall Street regulations as part of the omnibus spending bill.

For many on that left wing, her eagerness to fight large banks and corporations is reason enough to demand that she enter the presidential race, if only to give former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton a reason to remember her party’s liberal flank.

"I don’t think it would be helpful or healthy for our Democratic candidate to not have to go through the sharpening process of a primary, where she could sort of just walk into the general without having committed to some important, real, real economic populism,” Rep. Keith Ellison, Minnesota Democrat and co-chairman of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, said on a recent telephone conference call sponsored by pro-Warren group Democracy for America.

It's not personal, it's political. So here's what we seem to have going on. Shit-stirring socks...

... from the mother site open new accounts and post CLEARLY racist statements, some referencing material from sites famous for such racist statements. Then, and this is a vital element, after some righteous members here contest the trash-talker, some established "moles," I think only a couple or three, immediately start frothing at the keyboard and accuse this site of harboring the worst of humanity.

You have brand-new shit-stirrers show up, talking racist or other trash, you have members rise up incensed at the trash, you have a "mole" throw gasoline on the IMPORTED artificial blaze. Who are the moles? ARE there moles? You'll have to decide for yourself, but when I see someone who seems DU-bred, maybe has a May 2014 registration date and who has relatively few posts here, nearly ALL of them frothing - at - the - mouth political, I figure that person is not here to discuss a damn thing and steps in only to cause as much discord and damage as possible.

A number of people on DU really, REALLY don't like the idea of people with different viewpoints discussing things, and of those people, I believe we see a number appear here to actively work to sabotage DI, just for kicks.

What can be done? Not a lot! If admin detects sock accounts, that's a great help. But we can help ourselves by staying as cool and civil as we can manage to be. Let the invading assholes stand out with their over-the-top trash talk, don't feed them by getting ever hotter and hotter, that just pleases them no end. When someone gets way out of line, Right or Left, step on him/her. Use the jury system, and be honest to yourself when you vote. NOT THE EASIEST THING TO DO, I KNOW. But if you think this site is worthwhile, make the effort...

Wealthy donors sided with Democrats in midterms

For as often as Democrats attack the conservative billionaires Charles and David Koch for their heavy spending on politics, it's actually the liberal-minded who shelled out the most cash in the just completed midterm elections.

At least, that is, among those groups that must disclose what they raise and spend.

Among the top 100 individual donors to political groups, more than half gave primarily to Democrats or their allies. Among groups that funneled more than $100,000 to allies, the top of the list tilted overwhelmingly toward Democrats — a group favoring the GOP doesn't appear on the list until No. 14.

The two biggest super PACs of 2014? Senate Majority PAC and House Majority PAC — both backing Democrats.

Will certain members of DU ever run out of sockpuppets?...

Sometimes, when a DI member takes a dirt nap, temporary or permanent, you can tell that that same member is back in action under a new name by his/her dogged, near-psychotic interest in a single subject and in manner of speech. Sometimes another member with years of familiarity will "out" the sock.

It seems that some members who were banned on DU took a "parting gift" of spare identities, perhaps to use there, or to use here. One indicator of this is to note in a member's profile that he/she arrived in DI on or a week or so after May 13th of this year, the very start of this site. A while back, one such member received a dirt nap here, and a brand-new member showed up, similar MO with just a few posts... and a join date of May 2014! 😁

So, how can someone make such preparation, storing up spare identities, expecting to be banned, and still WANT to return to a site, ANY site where they anticipate they'll make their self unwelcome? And is there no mechanism for limiting the generation of sockpuppets?

On a personal note, after my first handful of posts here, I received a reply that suggested I was a "sock." I had to hit Urban Dictionary to see what that meant! I don't know who they thought I resembled, th ' poor schmuck...

Server problems today?

Connecting seems pretty much hit-or-miss this morning...

Hillary Clinton's Kennedy curse

Hillary Clinton could suffer a serious case of Kennedy deja vu if she makes another presidential run.

This time it’s U.S. Rep. Joseph P. Kennedy III who may help derail Clinton’s White House path by endorsing her potential 2016 opponent, U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren, much the same way the late U.S. Sen. Ted Kennedy backed Barack Obama in 2008.

“Whatever (Warren) wants to do she’s going to excel at,” the 34-year-old Kennedy said in interview with Herald editors and reporters. “She has been adamant that she’s not running for president and I take her at her word for that. If things change, we’ll see.”

The fact that Kennedy doesn’t dismiss a Warren run is significant and comes after his Massachusetts colleague, U.S. Rep. Michael Capuano, revealed to Boston Herald Radio that he told Warren he’d back her if she ran for president.


A file-wiping attack such as the Sony Pictures Entertainment hack could bring major federal departments to their knees, because most have no data-loss contingency plans, according to the latest figures on compliance with government cybersecurity laws. 

Further, unplugging systems to contain damage, as Sony did, would impair an agency’s ability to carry out constitutional duties, some former federal cyber leaders say.


Unlike industry, the federal government is required to have backup procedures in case of a cyber emergency. That said, agencies don't always follow the rules. 

More than 60 percent of the government's major agencies do not have full contingency plans should data become unavailable, according to an annual report to Congress on the Federal Information Security Management Act.
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