Paul Krugman: Seduced and Betrayed by Donald Trump (NY Times Column)
Donald Trump won the Electoral College (though not the popular vote) on the strength of overwhelming support from working-class whites, who feel left behind by a changing economy and society. And they're about to get their reward - the same reward that, throughout Mr. Trump's career, has come to everyone who trusted his good intentions. Think Trump University.
Stuart Heritage: "World leaders beware: a photo with Trump will expose your soul" (The Guardian)
Mitt Romney, Chris Christie, Barack Obama and Nigel Farage are all destined to be remembered for how they looked when they were photographed with the president-elect
Roger Cohen: Do Not Go Gentle (NY Times)
A friend once told me about going to see her father shortly before he died. He had advanced Alzheimer's and peered at her blankly. Then he said: "You are home." "Yes, Dad," she said. "I'm your daughter." He said, "I had you too much under my thumb."
Jonathan Jones: "A second coat: why painting is the comeback art of the 21st century" (The Guardian)
It tends to be ignored by art prizes, but painting is trendier than ever - and makes conceptual art look elitist and out of touch.
Amanda Michalopoulou: "Divided times: how literature teaches us to understand 'the other'" (The Guardian)
In an era of fear and division, fiction plays a vital role in dramatising difference and encouraging empathy.
Julian Barnes: I was wrong about EM Forster (The Guardian)
Put off by A Passage to India in his teens, the author has rediscovered a wry, sly and subversive writer.
Sam Thielman: Libraries promise to destroy user data to avoid threat of government surveillance (The Guardian)
New York Public Library changed its data retention policies, and the American Library Association apologized for 'normalizing' the Trump administration.
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Michelle in AZ
Take 2 minutes & watch this video
The frog legs cartoon reminds me of this one from 1970, in the old National Lampoon.
Jeannie the Teed-Off Temp
from Marc Perkel
from that Mad Cat, JD
LISTEN TO THE CHILDREN!
"ACE IS THE PLACE WITH THE CHICKEN SHIT HARDWARE MAN."
A FACE YOU JUST WANT TO PUNCH!
'HONEY BUNCHES OF A-HOLES'!
Visit JD's site - Kitty Litter Music
In The Chaos Household
Cooler than seasonal.
School District Bans 2 Classic American Novels
A school district in Virginia temporarily suspended the use of two classic American novels after a concerned mother complained about the racial slurs in them.
The novels in question are "To Kill a Mockingbird" by Harper Lee and "Adventures of Huckleberry Finn" by Mark Twain. Scholars hold both books in high regard for their literary merit and the anti-racist themes that were progressive for their respective eras.
Nevertheless, both novels have been repeatedly challenged in school libraries over the years for the books' frequent use of the N word, which appears 219 times in "Huckleberry Finn" and 48 times in "To Kill a Mockingbird." Both books rank among the most banned and challenged in U.S. history.
In the latest case, a parent of a child in Accomack County Public Schools filed a "Request for Reconsideration of Learning Resources" form challenging the use of both books in the school curriculum after speaking at a school board meeting last month, CBS affiliate WTVR reported Thursday.
According to the ALA's "Library Bill of Rights," librarians and governing bodies should respect that only parents have the right to restrict their own children's access to library resources. The organization maintains that libraries violate the First Amendment if they censor constitutionally protected speech.
Officially Has 4 New Members
The International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC), has officially approved the names of four new elements to be added to the periodic table. The new elements, Nihonium, Moscovium, Tennessine, and Oganesson, are now officially part of the periodic table, in spots 113, 115, 117, and 118, respectively.
Back in January the IUPAC, which handles the naming of new elements, officially confirmed that the four new elements had been found. In June, the organization put these four names to a vote. Now those names have been accepted and are going on the periodic table.
Three of the elements, Nihonium, Moscovium, and Tennessine, were named after the places the were discovered, namely Japan (Nihon), Moscow, and Tennessee. The fourth, Oganesson, was named after Russian nuclear scientist Yuri Oganessian.
With the addition of these four elements, the seventh row of the periodic table has finally been completed. Any new elements discovered in the future will require an additional row.
Universities Press For Backtrack On Deporting Thousands
More than 350 US universities are urging President-elect Donald Trump (R-Grifter) to change his mind and keep a program that lets hundreds of thousands of undocumented young people study and avoid deportation.
Nicknamed "Dreamers," they are the estimated 1.2 million young people who were brought to the United States illegally as children, grew up without US residency papers, finished high school and often speak better English than the language of their parents.
Some 740,000 of them have joined the DACA ("Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals"), a program approved in 2012 by President Barack Obama that protects them from deportation.
It has brought some normalcy to their lives, but it is a program that Trump promised during the presidential campaign to eliminate "immediately" if he won.
While DACA does not grant the dreamers federal funds or the coveted "Green Card" -- permanent residence and a work permit -- it lets them study at university, get a job and have a driver's license if they were in the country before the age of 16 and if they were under 31 in 2012.
No Honey For Slovenians
No more Melania Trump honey, cakes, shoes and underwear for Slovenians.
The future U.S. first lady has hired a law firm in her native country to protect her name and image from being used on numerous products that have sprung up since her husband, Donald Trump, was elected president.
Natasa Pirc Musar, director of the Pirc Musar&Partnerji law firm, said Friday that the use of the name "Melania Trump" for commercial purposes without approval of her client would be against the law in the small Alpine state and would represent a violation of personal rights.
Items that were named after her include honey jars with labels showing her smiling face and the inscription "from the home garden of Melania Trump," cakes decorated with golden dust, high heel shoes, an underwear line, a type of salad and even a big Christmas tree in the capital.
Born Melanija Knavs, Melania Trump left Slovenia in her 20s to pursue an international modeling career. The last time she is believed to have visited her native country was in July 2002, when she introduced Donald Trump to her parents at the lakeside Grand Hotel Toplice in the resort town of Bled two years before the couple's engagement.
Stolen Gate Found In Norway
An iron gate from Dachau concentration camp in Germany with the notorious "Arbeit macht frei" (work sets you free) slogan has been found in western Norway two years after it was stolen, police said on Friday.
"The gate is in okay condition and will be returned to German authorities as soon as practical," police in the western city of Bergen wrote in a statement.
Police got an anonymous tip that led to the find and a source said no arrests had been made. They issued two pictures of the gate propped up in a store room, apparently intact and mostly black with some flaking paint.
German authorities made a replica of the gate, 1.87 meters (6.14 ft) high and weighing 108 kilos (238 lbs), that they installed at Dachau last year to mark the 70th anniversary of the camp's liberation by U.S. troops on May 3, 1945.
The Nazis set up the camp in Dachau outside Munich only weeks after Adolf Hitler took power. Initially designed to detain political rivals, it became the prototype for a network of concentration camps where 6 million Jews were murdered.
Still On Probation
Presidential appointees often come with some sort of baggage. But retired Gen. David Petraeus, whom President-elect Donald Trump (R-Philanderer) is reportedly considering for secretary of state, is potentially in a league of his own.
The former CIA director - who pleaded guilty in 2015 to mishandling classified information that he shared with his mistress, Paula Broadwell - would apparently need to get permission from a probation officer to leave North Carolina to fulfill his duties as secretary of state, a condition of Petraeus' two-year probation.
"The defendant shall notify the probation officer within 72 hours of any change in residence or employment," read a court judgment, which was shared on Twitter by USA Today reporter Brad Heath. "The defendant shall not leave the Western District of North Carolina without the permission of the Court or probation officer. Travel allowed for work as approved by U.S. probation office."
Another condition would give the probation officer the right to search Petraeus' personal and office computers without a warrant.
"The defendant shall submit his person, residence, office, vehicle and/or any computer system including computer data storage media, or any electronic device capable of storing, retrieving, and/or accessing data to which they have access or control, to a search, from time to time, conducted by any U.S. Probation Officer and such other law enforcement personnel as the probation officer may deem advisable, without a warrant," the document read.
Notes Describe Now-Vanishing Arctic Ice Wall
The meticulous records of Capt. James Cook, the intrepid British explorer famous for exploring Australia and the Hawaiian islands, have found a new and modern-day value: Helping climate change scientists understand the extent of sea ice loss in the icy Canadian Arctic, according to a new study.
Notes, charts and maps created by Cook and his crew during an Arctic expedition in August 1778 carefully documented the position and thickness of the ice barring the explorers' way. They were searching for a corridor that they thought would link the Pacific and northern Atlantic oceans and offer a new maritime trade route between Great Britain and the Far East.
Cook never found that route, known today as the Northwest Passage. But his observations and those of his crew provide the earliest recorded evidence of then-extensive summer ice cover in the Chukchi Sea. That part of the Arctic Ocean lies between Alaska and Russia. These records, when compared to modern observations of sea ice, indicate how dramatically Arctic ice cover has changed - particularly in recent years, according to study author Harry Stern, a researcher with the Polar Science Center at the University of Washington.
While Cook wasn't the first explorer to search for the Northwest Passage - nor was he the last - he was the first to chart the ice border that bisected the ocean north of the Bering Strait, Stern said in the study. Cook was also the first to attempt the approach from the Pacific side by traveling up the North American coast, Stern said.
At the time, finding this route - which would have expedited and strengthened trade with the Orient - was an especially urgent goal for Great Britain. In fact, the House of Parliament issued an act in 1745 offering a reward of up to 20,000 pounds (about $24,978 U.S.) for finding and mapping the passage, according to archives of the Royal Greenwich Observatory maintained by the University of Cambridge Digital Library.
What a Religious Experience Looks Like
People who have had "a religious experience" often report feelings of joy, peace and warmth, and new research has found that during these experiences, certain reward centers in the brain are activated.
The study found that, among devoutly religious people, spiritual feelings activate the same areas of the brain as other rewarding and pleasurable experiences, like love, sex and drugs.
In the study, the researchers analyzed the brains of 19 devout Mormons in their 20s and 30s who had completed 1.5 to two years of missionary service for the Mormon Church.
The participants spent an hour in a brain scanner, and were shown quotes and videos meant to evoke spiritual feelings. For example, participants were shown passages from the Book of Mormon as well as videos produced by the Mormon Church. They were also asked to pray in the scanner for 6 minutes. At several points during the session, participants were asked, "Are you feeling the spirit?" (This is a phrase used in the Mormon Church to refer to feelings of religious joy.) The responses ranged from "not feeling" to "very strongly feeling."
The results showed that "feeling the spirit" was linked with activation of the nucleus accumbens, a brain region involved in processing feelings of reward. This activation peaked about 1 to 3 seconds before participants said they were experiencing peak spiritual feelings (which they indicated with the press of a button).
Global Concert Tours
The Top 20 Global Concert Tours ranks artists by average box office gross per city and includes the average ticket price for shows Worldwide. The list is based on data provided to the trade publication Pollstar by concert promoters and venue managers.
1. Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band; $5,676,738; $119.57.
2. Guns N' Roses; $5,346,750; $117.63.
3. Beyonce; $4,860,468; $108.60.
4. Adele; $4,175,052; $109.63.
5. Coldplay; $3,459,602; $108.78.
6. Justin Bieber; $3,018,983; $81.72.
7. Drake; $2,230,547; $111.51.
8. Kanye West; $2,182,858; $90.78.
9. Luke Bryan; $1,595,328; $60.99.
10. Zac Brown Band; $1,372,564; $62.01.
11. Jason Aldean; $1,149,514; $52.08.
12. "Bad Boy Family Reunion Tour" / Puff Daddy; $936,274; $82.88.
13. Sia; $893,733; $78.32.
14. Dixie Chicks; $854,339; $72.51.
15. Carrie Underwood; $703,262; $70.68.
16. Florida Georgia Line; $686,165; $44.37.
17. Dolly Parton; $673,164; $79.36.
18. Def Leppard; $606,266; $61.46.
19. Keith Urban; $557,759; $58.22.
20. Blink-182; $557,752; $38.19.
Global Concert Tours
Don Calfa, a top-notch character actor who portrayed the embalmer Ernie Kaltenbrunner in the 1985 cult horror comedy The Return of the Living Dead, has died. He was 76.
Calfa died Thursday - two days before his birthday - at his home in Yucca Valley, Calif., actor-producer Mark Terry (Live Evil, Brother's Blood) told The Hollywood Reporter.
A native of Brooklyn, Calfa also portrayed Paulie, the hitman who murders Hamptons rich guy Bernie Lomax (Terry Kiser) by giving him a heroin overdose, in the classic comedy Weekend at Bernie's (1989).
Calfa was cast by some of the top directors of his time, including Peter Bogdanovich (1976's Nickelodeon), Martin Scorsese (1977's New York, New York), Blake Edwards (1979's 10), Steven Spielberg (1979's 1941), Bob Rafelson (the 1981 remake of The Postman Always Rings Twice), and Barry Levinson (1991's Bugsy).
Calfa also collaborated several times with director (and fellow New Yorker) Peter Hyams; they worked together on Peeper (1976), The Star Chamber (1983), Running Scared (1986), The Presidio (1988), and Stay Tuned (1992).
He also was in Cinderella Liberty (1973), Bank Shot (1974), Foul Play (1978), The Rose (1979), and the remake of Doctor Dolittle (1998).
In The Return of the Living Dead, written and directed by Dan O'Bannon, an employee at a medical supply warehouse accidentally releases toxic gas into the air in Louisville, Ky., bringing to life dead people who want nothing but to eat brains.
On Doogie Howser, M.D., starring Neil Patrick Harris, Calfa played Carmine Delpino, the father of Doogie's best friend Vinnie (Max Casella). On Beverly Hills, 90210, he showed up as beach-house landlord Mr. Pitts. And on Barney Miller, he worked on seven episodes playing a different, character each time.
Early in his career, Calfa appeared on Broadway in Mating Dance in 1965 and Lenny in 1971.