Paul Krugman: "How Big a Bang for Trump's Buck? (Wonkish)" (NY Times Blog)
So we're probably looking at adding less than 1 percent, maybe much less than 1 percent, to growth. This isn't trivial, but it's not that big a deal.
Jonathan Chait: Republicans Stopped Sabotaging the Economy Because They Have the White House Now (NY Mag)
There is no economic rationale for this behavior. Their policy is simply to support fiscal contraction under Democratic presidents and fiscal expansion under Republican ones. Cynicism is the only basis to explain their behavior.
Elena Ferrante: 'My belief in some kind of beyond, acquired during childhood, has faded' (The Guardian)
The idea of death itself seems increasingly pallid. What is terrifying, instead, is the end of enjoyable life, of a full life.
Hadley Freeman: Bad science or expensive con: either way, I'm sticking with my skincare regime (The Guardian)
My skincare ritual is the closest I get to religion these days.
Zoe Williams: "Oscars 2018: the four big problems the Academy needs to fix" (The Guardian)
From Casey Affleck and James Franco, to how to top the Golden Globes show of solidarity, this year's awards ceremony has a number of difficulties to address.
Louis Wise: "From Avril Lavigne to Justin Timberlake: what do pop stars mean by the 'real me'?" (The Guardian)
Today's pop stars will stop at nothing to convince you of how 'intimate and raw' their music is - buzzwords that mostly sound like unwearable perfumes.
Andrew Anthony: "Steven Pinker: 'The way to deal with pollution is not to rail against consumption'" (The Guardian)
The feather-ruffling Harvard psychologist's new book, a defence of Enlightenment values, may be his most controversial yet.
Interview by Andrew Anthony: "Karl Ove Knausgaard: 'Contemporary fiction is overrated'" (The Guardian)
The author famed for his self-revelation explains why his new series forsakes inner turmoil to focus on the outside world.
David Bruce's Amazon Author Page
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David Bruce has over 80 Kindle books on Amazon.com.
Michelle in AZ
Jeannie the Teed-Off Temp
from Marc Perkel
Marc's Guide to Curing Cancer
So far so good on beating cancer for now. I'm doing fine. At the end of the month I'll be 16 months into an 8 month mean lifespan. And yesterday I went on a 7 mile hike and managed to keep up with the hiking group I was with. So, doing something right.
Still waiting for future test results and should see things headed in the right direction. I can say that it's not likely that anything dire happens in the short term so that means that I should have time to make several more attempts at this. So even if it doesn't work the first time there are a lot of variations to try. So if there's bad news it will help me pick the next radiation target.
I have written a "how to" guide for oncologists to perform the treatment that I got. I'm convinced that I'm definitely onto something and whether it works for me or not isn't the definitive test. I know if other people tried this that it would work for some of them, and if they improve it that it will work for a lot of them.
The guide is quite detailed and any doctor reading this can understand the procedure at every level. I also go into detail as to how it works, how I figured it out, and variations and improvements that could be tried to enhance it. I also introduce new ways to look at the problem. There is a lot of room for improvement and I think that doctors reading it will see what I'm talking about and want to build on it. And it's written so that if you're not a doctor you can still follow it. It also has a personal story revealing that I'm the class clown of cancer support group. I give great interviews and I look pretty hot in a lab coat.
So, feel free to read this and see what I'm talking about. But if any of you want to help then pass this around to both doctors and cancer patients. I need some media coverage. I'm looking for as many eyeballs as possible to read these ideas. Even if this isn't the solution, it's definitely on the right track. After all, I did hike 7 miles yesterday. And this hiking group wasn't moving slow. So if this isn't working then, why am I still here?
I also see curing cancer as more of an engineering problem that a medical problem. So if you are good at solving problems and most of what you know about medicine was watching the Dr. House MD TV show, then you're at the level I was at when I started. So anyone can jump in and be part of the solution.
Here is a link to my guide: Oncologists Guide to Curing Cancer using Abscopal Effect
from that Mad Cat, JD
LET'S MAKE A DEAL!
'IT MIGHT HAVE BEEN AN ECHO'.
"WHAT IS HE HIDING?"
"ALL ABOUT EVE."
THE MAN WITHOUT A HEART.
"TWO SANTA CLAUSES."
'JIM CROW' IS ALIVE AND WELL.
"HE DOESN'T PLAY FAVORITES."
"THE REIGN 0F THE CHOWDERHEADS."
Visit JD's site - Kitty Litter Music
In The Chaos Household
Still overcast, no rain.
Patrick Stewart was so inspired by the inventors and inventions being honored by the motion picture academy Saturday night that he offered a spontaneous recitation of a scene from Shakespeare's "A Midsummer Night's Dream."
The venerable actor hosted the academy's annual Scientific and Technical Awards ceremony, an untelevised dinner at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel, and he closed the evening by going off-script with Puck's plea in defense of art.
Stewart was a gamely host throughout the more than three-hour program, calling the honorees "film magicians" and poking fun at his own lack of high-tech understanding.
"I have to tell you, I wouldn't know the difference between a warp-core breach and a space-time continuum if they got into bed with me!" the 77-year-old actor said to raucous applause.
Stewart presented nine awards for hardware and software innovations, along with three Oscar statuettes.
Robert De Niro
Hollywood star Robert De Niro took aim at the Trump administration's stance on climate change, telling a packed audience in the Middle East that he was visiting from a "backward" country suffering from "temporary insanity."
He said that in the country he's describing, the head of the Environmental Protection Agency suggested last week that global warming may be a good thing for humanity.
"I am talking about my own country, the United States of America. We don't' like to say we are a 'backward' country so let's just say we're suffering from a case of temporary insanity," he added.
De Niro received applause and laughs when he said the U.S. "will eventually cure itself by voting our dangerous leader" out of office. He spoke Sunday at Dubai's World Government Summit.
Robert De Niro
Long-time CBS anchor Dan Rather called President-for-now Donald Trump's (R-Shameless) defense of Rob Porter, a former White House staff secretary accused of domestic abuse, a "heat-seeking missile" aimed at some of the president's "biggest vulnerabilities."
After Porter left his job Wednesday in the wake of media reports of domestic abuse accusations by both of his ex-wives, Trump praised his work in the White House and wished him a "wonderful career." Trump emphasized that Porter insists he is innocent and indicated in a tweet Porter may have been "falsely accused."
Rather wrote in a Facebook post that Trump's support of Porter "reminds everyone" that Trump, too, has been "credibly accused of assault (by multiple women)." Twenty-one women have accused Trump of sexual misconduct.
Rather also pointed out that, like Porter, there are several people in the White House still lacking security clearance - including Trump's son-in-law, Jared Kushner.
Trump's "incredible cocoon of privilege and ego ... blinds him to the sheer horror of his statements in defense of Mr. Porter," Rather said.
Voting Machines With Paper Backup
Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf on Friday ordered counties that plan to replace their electronic voting systems to buy machines that leave a paper trail - a safeguard against hacking - but his budget doesn't include any money to fund the replacement of the state's aging, increasingly vulnerable fleet.
The Democrat's administration said the move to require that new systems include a paper backup will increase the security of voting systems and make balloting easier to audit.
"This directive will ensure that the next generation of the commonwealth's voting systems conforms to enhanced standards of resiliency, auditability and security," Acting Secretary of State Robert Torres said in a statement.
The Wolf administration said in a statement later Friday that it's working on a comprehensive overhaul of Pennsylvania's election apparatus, including its voter registration database. Hackers scanned voter registration databases around the nation before the 2016 presidential election.
The state, however, is not requiring counties to discard their old equipment, at least for now. The directive only requires them to buy machines with a paper backup if they decide to switch systems. Nor does the Wolf administration's budget plan , released this week, include any new money to help counties replacing their aging systems.
Spanish Language Website Yet To Materialise
The White House website has yet to produce any Spanish-language content a year into Donald Trump's (R-Pendejo) presidency, despite his administration's promises to the contrary.
Spanish articles were removed from the official site when Mr Trump took office in January 2017, in a departure of policy from the previous two administrations, which both published content in the language.
The US is now lagging behind Iran and even reclusive North Korea in terms of its Spanish language offerings, with both regimes providing official content for Spanish speakers.
A year ago, then-presidential press secretary Sean Spicer said content had been deleted because IT staff were "working overtime" to develop a new Spanish site.
Amazon said Friday it had appointed NBC's entertainment president Jennifer Salke to head its movie and television studios following the resignation of Roy Price over allegations of sexual harassment.
Price quit in October after a producer for "The Man in the High Castle" -- one of the studio's highest-profile shows -- said he had repeatedly propositioned her in 2015, making lewd suggestions during a taxi ride.
Amazon said in a statement Salke had impressed executives through the "deep relationships she has nurtured" over a career that has also taken spells at 20th Century Fox and Aaron Spelling Productions.
Price's downfall came in the wake of dozens of sexual predation allegations against movie mogul Harvey Weinstein, sparked by investigations in The New York Times and The New Yorker.
The scandal touched off a deluge of accusations against powerful men in entertainment, politics and the media, forcing many industries to re-examine workplace policies.
WWII Bomb Found
London City Airport
London City Airport has been closed following the discovery of a Second World War bomb in the River Thames at the nearby King George V Dock.
A 214-metre exclusion zone has been set up as a precaution by the Metropolitan Police, and roads in the area have been closed.
The bomb was found during routine work at the dock which runs alongside the airport's runway.
The Royal Navy attended the scene and confirmed the nature of the device, Scotland Yard said.
The airport has advised all passengers not to travel to the airport and to contact their airline for further information.
London City Airport
Increased Prices At Parks
Ticket prices at Walt Disney World in Orlando and at Disneyland in California are increasing, company officials said Sunday.
Starting Sunday, "value" days for Magic Kingdom will cost $109 for adults and $103 for children, which represent a $2 increase. During "regular" time, park visitors will pay $4 more with prices jumping to $119 for adults and $113 for children. The "peak" prices will be $129 for adults and $123 for children.
At Epcot, Hollywood Studios and Animal Kingdom, "value" one-day tickets will now be $102 for adults and $96 for children, which is a $2 bump for both. "Regular" times for adults will be $114 for adults and $108 for children, and "peak" tickets jump to $122 and $116, respectively for adults and children.
At Disneyland, the regular price of admission at the Anaheim, California, park will rise to $117, a $7 change. A single-day ticket during peak periods will climb to $135, an $11 increase. And the value ticket will cost $97, no change.
Weekend Box Office
"Fifty Shades Freed"
Newcomers like "Fifty Shades Freed," ''Peter Rabbit" and "The 15:17 to Paris" breathed some fresh life into a marketplace that has for weeks been dominated by "Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle," ''The Greatest Showman" and various Oscar contenders. But it's all just setting the stage for "Black Panther," which opens next week.
"Fifty Shades Freed" managed to take the top spot on the charts in North American theaters. Universal Pictures estimated Sunday that the final chapter in the Christian Grey and Anastasia Steele saga earned $38.8 million over the weekend -- down significantly from the first film's $85.2 million debut and even the sequel's $46.6 million opening, but enough to bump the three-film franchise over $1 billion globally. Women once again made up the vast majority (75 percent) of the opening weekend audience.
"Peter Rabbit," which cost around $50 million to produce, hopped to second place with a solid $25 million and an A- CinemaScore.
"The 15:17 to Paris" pulled into third place with $12.6 million. Eastwood's dramatic thriller about the true story was not well-received by critics or audiences, who gave the film a poor B- CinemaScore.
Estimated ticket sales for Friday through Sunday at U.S. and Canadian theaters, according to comScore. Final domestic figures will be released Monday.
1. "Fifty Shades Freed," $38.8 million.
2. "Peter Rabbit," $25 million.
3. "The 15:17 to Paris," $12.6 million.
4. "Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle," $9.8 million.
5. "The Greatest Showman," $6.4 million.
6. "Maze Runner: The Death Cure," $6 million.
7. "Winchester," $5.1 million.
8. "The Post," $3.5 million.
9. "The Shape of Water," $3 million.
10. "Den of Thieves,"$2.9 million.
"Fifty Shades Freed"
John Gavin, the tall, strikingly handsome actor who appeared in "Spartacus," ''Psycho" and other hit films of the 1960s before forsaking acting to become President Ronald Reagan's ambassador to Mexico, died Friday at age 86.
After appearances in a handful of 1950s B-movies, Gavin's breakthrough came in 1958 when he landed the lead role of a World War II German soldier in "A Time to Love and a Time to Die."
Universal didn't lose faith, however, starring him opposite Lana Turner in a remake of the soap opera "Imitation of Life" the following year. Then came the role of Janet Leigh's divorced lover, Sam Loomis, in the 1960 Alfred Hitchcock classic "Psycho."
Gavin's performance, though, was overshadowed by those of Leigh as the tentative, frightened thief who steals $40,000 to keep their romance together and by Anthony Perkins as the psychotic owner of the Bates Motel where she seeks shelter on her way to meet her lover.
Gavin went on to make a flurry of films over the next two years, playing Julius Caesar in "Spartacus," appearing opposite Susan Hayward in "Back Street," opposite Sandra Dee in Peter Ustinov's Shakespearian spoof "Romanoff and Juliet" and again with Dee in "Tammy Tell Me True."
His career began to wane by the end of the 1960s and a minor role in the 1967 musical "Thoroughly Modern Millie," starring Julie Andrews, marked the end of his association with Universal.
He made a few other films and appeared on such TV shows as "Fantasy Island," ''The Love Boat" and "Hart to Hart," but he was already on the road to another profession, diplomacy.
Unlike some who win ambassadorships as political favors and are sent to countries they know little about, Gavin arrived in Mexico in 1981 well equipped for the job. His father had invested in the country's mines, and ancestors of his Mexican-born mother were among California's first Spanish settlers. Gavin had often visited Mexico in his youth and was fluent in Spanish and Portuguese.
Gavin was born John Golenor into a well-to-do Los Angeles family on April 8, 1931.
While at Stanford, Gavin met a lovely coed named Cicely Evans. After an eight-year courtship they married in 1957 and had two daughters, Cristina and Maria. After their divorce, he married Constance Towers, who also had two children, Michael and Maureen, from a previous marriage.
After his ambassadorship ended, Gavin opened an office in Los Angeles and invested in various enterprises in Mexico and served on the boards of corporations and charities.