25 March, 2008

Things You Should Read

First, this scathing criticism of Hillary Clinton's decision to continue in her now-quixotic run for the Democratic nomination:

For nearly 20 years, she has been encased in the apparatus of political celebrity. Look at her schedule as first lady and ever since. Think of the thousands of staged events, the tens of thousands of times she has pretended to be delighted to see someone she doesn’t know, the hundreds of thousands times she has recited empty clich├ęs and exhortatory banalities, the millions of photos she has posed for in which she is supposed to appear empathetic or tough, the billions of politically opportune half-truths that have bounced around her head.

Second, a man struggles with 24 hours of constant media:
The peril of listening to Limbaugh and O'Reilly at the same time is that you tend to compare them, and these are dangerous waters for an unapologetic, unreconstructed New Deal liberal like me. The comparison makes you actually like Rush. He's funny; O'Reilly is not. Limbaugh teases and baits his political adversaries; O'Reilly sneers and snarls at them. Limbaugh is mock-heroic; O'Reilly is self-righteous. So, when Limbaugh speculates that the Democrats in the House committee went after Roger Clemens because liberals hate cherished American institutions such as churches, the Boy Scouts and baseball, you know he's sorta kidding. When O'Reilly says liberals who oppose torture of prisoners just don't care how many people will die in a terrorist attack, you know he's as serious as an aneurysm.

Third, a guy is building Stonehenge in his backyard.

Fourth, quasi-statistical reasons to not pay attention to daily tracking polls. Basically, randomly generated data looks just like actual poll data. Their argument is basically right, though I'd like to see it made rigorous.

By the way, I stole almost all of these from Andrew Sullivan, so you might as well just read him.


Eremita said...

Ok, that Stonehenge thing is incredible. If this guy can finish his stonehenge in, what, maybe a year... image how fast the original must have been built with a little slave labour to help!

spencer said...

I'm surprised there aren't more Stonehenges!