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Category — Media

Harry Markopolos Testimony before Congress – CNN Missed It

I hope everyone listened to Harry Markopolos yesterday testify about Madoff before Congress. He was brilliant. He was exactly right about what to do with the SEC. He said put all 3500 employees on the street and let the New York State Attoney General enforce securities law. He said there had been no federal enforcement for the last eight years. He had lots to say and he said it all well. The entire testimony is available on CSPN3.

No one can deny that this was an important bit of history. Markopolos was testifying about the biggest bilking of investors in the history of the world. Every news organization covered it. MSNBC broadcast the event live. Tell me why this event did not exist for CNN. There was no coverage. It’s as if it never happened. I find this very strange and a very disturbing editing of world events.

February 5, 2009   No Comments

Claymation Chess — Clay Stop Motion Animated Chess

I saw this in the humor section of the New York Times today. It’s great. It’s like Wizard’s Chess.

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October 24, 2008   No Comments

The Public Library – Better than Sliced Bread

As I’ve noted elsewhere, I love books. I have lots of books. Last year I nursed a fantasy that I would be able to give away most of my books but I wasn’t able to follow through on that goal. I have been able to use the library to avoid buying as many new books as I used to buy. This year I’ve bought a few comic/graphic novel books and a cook book or two. That’s pretty good. I feel like I’ve built a dam and it’s holding.

I’ve also been intent on dumping cable. For the ten years I was in California, I didn’t have cable. I signed up here and I was able to see everything I hadn’t seen in about 7-9 months. After that, it was the constant irritation of turning on the TV and seeing infomercials on more channels than original programming. Most of the original programming was Law and Order of various flavors. Why pay for a slime ball company like Comcast or any of the others to pipe an endless stream of screaming infomercials into your home? I cut cable to absolute minimum. I’ve bought an antenna to cut them off completely but I haven’t had time to risk my life installing it.

The other thing I did was join Netflix. Netflix is wonderful. I can watch anything at any time and it’s all stuff that I want to watch. Why doesn’t everyone dump cable and sign with Netflix? It’s pure joy.

Finally, I also pick up media from the library and that’s sort of the point to this rant. Our library has a great collection of DVDs and VHS but they charged for them. The fee was $2 which made them more expensive than Netflix. I picked up a VHS tape at the library today and they’ve stopped charging for the older VHS movies. That’s so fantastic. I know several struggling families that can’t afford even basic 15 channel cable that rely upon the library for most of their entertainment. It’s great to live in a city with a library like ours.

If you haven’t visited your library recently, try visiting on-line. You may find a whole world of free just down the street.

September 13, 2008   No Comments

Shark Attack – 6 Degrees of Separation and Speaking Ill of the Dead

In the “if it bleeds it leads” style of journalism, the shark attack in Solana Beach that killed retired veterinarian David Martin was featured on all of the major news networks last week. Why? It’s a local story and doesn’t merit coverage on national news.

As it happens, I knew this guy. When I first moved to San Diego he was a vet in the practice where I took my two cats and then my two dogs. He was a pretty man who wore extremely expensive cowboy boots. He was also totally detached from his work. When I brought my animals in it was always my hope I wouldn’t have to see him. Perhaps he was already in retirement mode and counting the days but my overall impression was that he didn’t care. I’m sure others will probably say just the opposite. I don’t think you can build the successful practice that they had without either caring or doing a good job of pretending to care. I didn’t see either from this guy. I saw a very pretty face with very expensive tastes. I hope the shark appreciated the meal.

April 27, 2008   No Comments

She’ll Be Cheering Him On – NY Times Sexism

Turn your browser to this page in the New York Times Sports section. The title of the article is “For Running Couples, Marriage Has Its Trials”. Readers of the Times have their trials, too. Look at the caption under the pictures of the runners for this piece. Does anything strike you as a wee bit off? Here is the caption:

Alan Culpepper will try to make his third Olympic team at the marathon trials next Saturday. His wife, Shayne, who hopes to make the Beijing Games in the 1,500, will be cheering him on.

Could the author have written the caption in a different way? The author, Aimee Berg, should have realized how that caption would sound. She should have just identified the couple and not put the female in the stereotypical cheerleader role.

This is a minor point in an otherwise inoffensive article but it’s this type of repeated subjugation that irritates me to the point of drinking herbal tea (bleh!). People read this. It’s internalized as the true order of things in the universe. Writers should be more sensitive to this sort of gaff.

October 25, 2007   1 Comment