As riveting as the sport can be at its most intense moments, baseball’s primary activities are the pitcher staring at the catcher to decide what to throw and the batter stepping in and out of the batter’s box. It doesn’t have to be that way.
May we suggest two simple rule changes: Once batters step into the box, they shouldn’t be allowed to step out. Otherwise it’s a strike. If no one is on base, pitchers get seven seconds to throw the next pitch. Otherwise it’s a ball.
For many countries, one response has been welfare-to-work programs, in which advisors meet with job seekers to help them find the right employment opportunities. With over $600 billion spent annually on unemployment benefits and programs within the OECD, improving the system for compensating the unemployed and moving them back to work can save billions of dollars, as well as boosting economic growth. And much as the private sector has widely adopted segmentation strategies—dividing customers into distinct groups and personalizing products and services to match each one—governments are likewise finding that welfare-to-work programs are well suited to the approach.
In the current cases these distinctions between corporate forms are meaningless. The Constitution’s free-exercise clause does not evaporate when someone forms a faith-based for-profit corporation. Can the government compel a Jewish deli not to be kosher? The radical implication of the White House argument is that the Constitution doesn’t apply to commercial activity.
If the mandate is overturned, birth control will continue to be widely available and at low cost for all Americans. Nine of 10 health plans already cover contraception, and business owners would gain no right to interfere with the choice of their workers to use or not use it. But no one would be required by law to violate their deepest religious convictions.
We no longer have one, and haven’t for more than two decades. Fewer and fewer debate coaches are communication scholars, which is fine because Communication Departments don’t consider us anything more than the bastard cousins who show up at the family reunion piss-drunk and demanding more potato salad. Our activity long ago (40 years?) lost any resemblance to a public speaking event attracting outside audiences. The problem is we vacated that academic space without being able to find a home anywhere else. Despite the pious assumptions of some with “policy” in mind, we are not a legitimate “research” community of scholars. The “portable skills” we currently engrain in our students via practice are: all sources are equivalent, no need for qualifications; “quoting” a source simply means underlining ANY words found ANYWHERE in the document, context and intent are irrelevant; and we are the only group outside of Faux News that believes one’s argument is improved by taking every point of logic to its most absurd extreme. Simply put, 99.9% of the speech docs produced in debates would receive no better than a C (more likely F) in any upper division undergraduate research-based class. Comically, we are the public speaking research activity that is atrocious at oral persuasion and woefully in violation of any standard research practices. But this letter is not intended to bury Debate, even though it’s hard to praise it in its current state. Before any peace treaty ending the Paradigm Wars can be signed and ratified, an honest appraisal of where Debate fits in the Academy is necessary.
The Danish company has an unusual method of filling this position. Rather than conducting formal interviews, Lego invites the most promising applicants to its headquarters to sketch and build Lego sets in front of a panel of senior designers.
None of this is to say, obviously, that taxing people at a rate of 100% wouldn’t be a gross moral wrong. I wouldn’t even deny that it would be wrong for many of the same reasons that slavery is wrong. But it’s not the same thing. And it’s not anywhere close to the same magnitude of wrong.
Early last week, the District of Columbia found it had forgotten to include anti-scalping language in its big rewrite of the part of the municipal code that also governs food trucks, effectively legalizing the practice — by accident. Officials promised that the situation would be rectified promptly. But they never answered the question: Wait, why do D.C. and dozens of states still restrict scalping in the first place?
President Obama repeatedly assured Americans that after the Affordable Care Act became law, people who liked their health insurance would be able to keep it. But millions of Americans are getting or are about to get cancellation letters for their health insurance under Obamacare, say experts, and the Obama administration has known that for at least three years.
A more emphatic endorsement of race-neutral alternatives in Schuette would reinforce Fisher. In a society where unequal opportunity is increasingly associated with class rather than race, a strong ruling in Schuette could move the country toward affirmative action that helps the truly disadvantaged.
So yes, it is “just” a smoke alarm. And a very good one. But I think it’s also a piece of a much larger plan: make products that are so good that they can stand on their own and you’ll have to have them, but also work together to create something we’ve never seen before.
Micro-equity seeks to overcome the obstacles to sustainability by giving entrepreneurs larger sums of capital than would be available through loans without requiring them to devote a large share of revenues to interest payments. The micro-entrepreneur would have more time to use the capital and develop the business.
He was born in Panama and came north, possessing no knowledge of the English language, to join a new family — a sports family — in Greensboro, N.C., and then Ft. Lauderdale, Fla., and then Albany, N.Y., and then Columbus, Ohio. When he hit 161st Street in 1995, a few blocks south of the Grand Concourse, he was home for the rest of his career.
It’s not a slippery slope argument anymore. It’s real. And while it’s not an argument that we go back and ban gay marriage, it is a reminder that tolerance ought cut both ways, but often doesn’t.
It wasn’t supposed to be this way. Voters were assured that legalizing gay marriage wouldn’t undermine religious freedom—after all, the public was assured that religious institutions would be free to act as they always had. But what about religious individuals? The effects of this new legal regime on private citizens have largely been ignored.
As tempting as it may be to attribute these events to the atmosphere of post-insurrectionary anarchy in Egypt and Syria, that is not the best vantage point from which to view the problem. Take a step back, and it becomes clear that the recent assaults are part of a bigger offensive against Middle Eastern Christians, one that can be traced back to decades-long developments in regional politics and Islamic society. The Arab Spring may be the proximate cause of some of the worst violence, but its roots run much deeper — and the stakes are much higher than one might think. What we are witnessing is nothing less than a regional religious cleansing that will soon prove to be a historic disaster for Christians and Muslims alike.
Jon Olinto, co-founder of Boston’s b.good, thinks his burger chain can break that mold. As at his flagship in Boston’s financial district, his restaurants feature seasonal menus, farm-to-table produce, and made-from-scratch condiments and salad dressings. B.good’s fries are cut from whole potatoes and its meat patties are ground on site. The seasonal menu features peaches, tomatoes, and corn in summer, and green chiles, cauliflower, and apple shakes in the fall.
Cathy Young gives a thoughtful critique of how we look at Bayard Rustin’s legacy:
Labels aside, Bayard Rustin was a great American and a true hero. He had firsthand experience of oppression and prejudice; yet for him, human rights activism was never about solidarity with his own group but about freedom, justice and dignity for all. He had firsthand experience of the shortcomings of Western democracy—yet he understood that it was the bulwark of the values he believed in, and that it’s worth fighting for. His legacy presents a challenge to both left and right: to the right, a warning against demonizing social democratic politics and gay advocacy (which Rustin embraced late in life, less as a personal cause than as an integral part of the human rights struggle); to the left, a warning against treating the West and its allies as the cause of all ills.
For Zach Line, the news that he’s a Viking came on Saturday, with a phone that didn’t ring. He could be starting alongside Adrian Peterson in the season opener—but it’ll be three more weeks before he knows if the dream will last
One big reality check came earlier this year over a very modest trimming of the budget known as the sequester. In D.C., many expected the American people would rise up in revolt when the so-called “cuts” took effect. Instead, no one noticed. Outside of those who work for the government, there was hardly any impact.
For those in power, that was a terrible glimpse into the reality of how irrelevant much of what they do has become. For most Americans, it was a baby step in the right direction.
Josh Barro with a bleak reminder for New Yorkers: the city needs a candidate willing to make tough choices, rather than promising everything:
It’s a microcosm of this whole campaign, in which the candidates run around making big promises with no apparent acknowledgment of the city’s tight finances, or of the fact that policy choices involve trade-offs, or even of the mayor’s lack of control over certain policy areas, like income taxation, rent control, and anything the MTA does. Yes, the candidates say, I’ll save the kitties, I’ll make the Wall Street fat cats pay for it, and I’ll give you a middle-class tax cut while I do it.
Only Lhota gave the correct answer: No, you do not strand thousands of New Yorkers for 90 minutes in a futile effort to herd two cats whose lives we are inexplicably prioritizing over the rats who are run over, or drowned, or exterminated in the subways every day.
Farrell argues that Booker serves up fables that appeal to his audiences. “Upper-middle-class white people love to hear these stories, you know, somebody who cares. So Cory Booker gave it to them and is still giving it to them,” he says. Rice, the city councilman, echoed that sentiment, saying Booker tells the story “particularly to folks outside of Newark.”
People lie about being a veteran everyday. Many times, it’s not enough for these charlatans to pose and earn glory — and a little bit of cash — from the Department of Veterans Affairs. Sometimes they build profitable business on lies and falsified reputations.
The standard progressive meme is that all the divisiveness over health reform is the fault of stubborn intransigent Republicans who stood in the way of reaching a bipartisan compromise. Whether it was because they didn’t care, were out of ideas or simply were Obama haters (the explanations vary), everything would have smooth sailing had President Obama been able to work with a more cooperative Congress. The President’s signature promise in the 2008 election was that he would be a post-partisan president. Yet within days of taking office, he short-circuited discussions with Republicans over the size and nature of the fiscal stimulus package by caustically remarking “I won.” By August 2009, as angry Americans voiced their displeasure with the health care bill, it was clear that his post-partisan promise had fizzled.
App.net is hard to explain to geeks that tolerate Twitter and even those geeks don’t use the service in full-force. Personally, I love App.net and use it daily, but I am clearly an outlier. There’s some very cool stuff happening with the App.net service and I look forward to seeing it, but I can’t quite shake the feeling that Honan may be right and in a couple of years we will be thinking, “App.net? What was that again?”
Max Fisher lays out a fantastic overview of what’s going on in Syria:
The United States and allies are preparing for a possibly imminent series of limited military strikes against Syria, the first direct U.S. intervention in the two-year civil war, in retaliation for President Bashar al-Assad’s suspected use of chemical weapons against civilians.
If you found the above sentence kind of confusing, or aren’t exactly sure why Syria is fighting a civil war, or even where Syria is located, then this is the article for you. What’s happening in Syria is really important, but it can also be confusing and difficult to follow even for those of us glued to it.
Now don’t get me wrong. I understand where my liberal friends are coming from. I share the same desire for a safe and healthy food supply. There’s a LOT that disturbs me about the state of food production and distribution in America.
I think Monsanto is evil, that patenting seeds and suing farmers is unethical, and that some GMO crops (like Roundup Ready Soybeans) lend themselves to irresponsible herbicide and pesticide use and cross-contamination.
But I’m also not going to let my anti-corporate sentiments get in the way of a diverse and promising field of research.
Yet, what is the rational basis for such a strong norm against chemical weapons? Some writers such as John Mueller (in Foreign Affairs), Nick Gillespie (Reason), and John Glaser have called for erasing the red line. They argue that it is not at all clear that chemical weapons when used, such as in World War I, were more hurtful to civilians or military personnel than conventional weapons. Indeed, chemical weapons could potentially make for more humane warfare given their potential to incapacitate armies without killing them.
So not only is the military back in power, but it’s abandoned its secular roots. Feel those winds of change in the air?
The Egyptian military has enlisted Muslim scholars in a propaganda campaign to persuade soldiers and policemen that they have a religious duty to obey orders to use deadly force against supporters of the ousted president, Mohamed Morsi.
Given broad availability and lack of interest among the remaining holdouts, why exactly is nation-wide broadband access a top priority?
While programs like the Connect America Fund have made access to broadband nearly universal in the US, less than three-quarters of Americans actually use it in their homes. A new study by the Pew Internet and American Life Project found that 30 percent of respondents didn’t have a broadband connection at home, and 20 percent had no home internet access at all. This wasn’t because it was impossible to get; the White House recently reported that 98 percent of Americans had access to at least basic broadband. Instead, people are declining to sign up because of cost, problems getting online, or a simple lack of interest.
So why are 20 percent of Americans opting out? In 2010, about half of non-users said they just weren’t interested, while 10 percent said it was too expensive and 9 percent said it was too frustrating. Their attitudes aren’t mirrored by the majority of Americans, most of whom said that not being online was an impediment to finding jobs, using government services, and learning new things. But many non-users aren’t likely to get online any time soon. While internet adoption keeps rising, it’s plateaued in recent years, with a sizable gap still offline.
As with most details regarding the North, Pyongyang offers no official statistics on the prevalence of illegal drug consumption. The study is the first to attempt to put a number on how widespread the use of crystal meth has become.
“Almost every adult in that area (of North Korea) has experienced using ice and not just once,” says Kim Seok-hyang, who co-authored the study. “I estimate that at least 40% to 50% are seriously addicted to the drug.”
Scott Basinger at the University of Houston did a study looking at the influence of 246 sexual, financial, election, criminal, and political corruption scandals on Congressional elections over the last 30 years. He defined corruption as bribery, conspiracy, obstruction of justice, and influence peddling. In other words, corruption involved politician’s abuse of their office, or, in evolutionary terms, the maldistribution of group resources. The other types of scandals involved non-governmental, non-official, personal behaviors such as extramarital affairs (sex), tax evasion (financial), violations of campaign laws (election), and driving while intoxicated (criminal).
He found that voters had a much more negative response to political corruption, the evolutionary evil, than the personal scandals. More specifically, corruption has the largest effect, driving down the vote share of incumbents by 8%, while sexual, financial, and criminal scandals drove it down by 5%. Although small numbers, the effect is 60% larger for political corruption than sexual and other types of scandals. Election scandals had little to no effect.
“Liberty not only means that the individual has both the opportunity and the burden of choice; it also means that he must bear the consequences of his actions and will receive praise or blame for them. Liberty and responsibility are inseparable.”—F.A. Hayek
These are young people at war with the concept of secrecy itself, which is just foolish. There are many legitimate reasons for governments to keep secrets, among them the need to preserve the element of surprise in military operations or criminal investigations, to permit leaders and diplomats to bargain candidly, and to protect the identities of those we ask to perform dangerous and difficult missions.
The most famous leakers in American history were motivated not by a general opposition to secrecy but by a desire to expose specific wrongdoing. Mark Felt, the “Deep Throat” who helped steer Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein’s Watergate reporting, understood that the Nixon Administration was energetically abusing the powers of the presidency. Daniel Ellsberg copied and leaked the Pentagon Papers because they showed that the White House and Pentagon had never really believed the lies they were telling about the Vietnam War.
In other words, they had good reasons. The reporters and editors who published their leaks weighed taking that step seriously, ultimately deciding that the public’s need to know trumped the principle of secrecy. They concluded that the government in these instances was abusing its power.
Where it gets downright immoral to not measure them, I say, is if your program is so expensive it crowds out two other people who could benefit. We don’t know if that’s true or not, since Heifer (shame on them) wouldn’t share their studies or data with the journalists. But I’ve seen many, many, many projects that spend $1500 training and all the “other stuff” in order to give people $300 or a cow. Is it fair to ask, what if we’d just given them $1800? Or what if we’d given six people cows? Seriously, your one guy does six times better than that?
Why do sensible, caring people act this way? Subconsciously, I think humans feel like we owe something to the people we interact with, and pretty much nothing to those we do not. Without thinking about it, we are comfortable with that six-times moral tradeoff.
So far I don’t get it. There seems to be plenty of information about colleges, and I doubt if a federal rating system would improve on those ratings already privately available. To the extent that federal system became focal, the incentives to game and scheme it would become massive, and how or whether to punish the gamers, if and when they are caught, would be a political decision. I don’t see that as healthy.
Given that previous educational subsidies mostly are converted into higher rates of tuition and thus captured by the school, the second plank would simply boost the subsidy to high performing colleges. There are plenty of ways to do that and in any case it doesn’t seem to help today’s marginal students, who probably cannot do well in those environments in any case. Furthermore colleges with high graduate earnings are very often those located in or near high-paying cities. Should we be subsidizing on that basis? Should we be giving colleges an incentive to identify and deny admission to potential lower earners? Do we really want the federal government helping to crush humanities majors? And I don’t see that the kind of rating system under discussion here is measuring actual value added, ceteris paribus of course.
But since Mubarak’s fall, extremist violence against Christians has picked up in Egypt. In early October 2011, Egypt saw its worst instance of sectarian violence in 60 years, when two-dozen Christians died in clashes with the military.
As a result of these kinds of attacks, by one estimate, around 100,000 Christians left Egypt in 2011.
Yet that stance also requires some parsing. Around 10 percent of the reported violations involved typos — not malicious intent, but typing something incorrectly into a computer. If 68 percent are foreigners roaming in the U.S., and another 10 percent are simple typos, that means 78 percent of the NSA’s reported rules violations are more accurately characterized as simple errors rather than a “structural scandal,” as some critics have put it.
That leaves 13 percent of the violations attributable to other causes — “system errors,” in the words of the NSA audit, and, most alarmingly, malicious intent (to include intentional disregard of the law). There is no breakdown of how many violations were intentional, which raises an obvious consideration: Rather than assuming intentional law-breaking, as some do, the debate should instead be about what the country’s expectations for compliance and oversight really are.
If the goal of “total annihilation of the current US regime” does not qualify one as an enemy of the United States, I’m not sure what does. WikiLeaks certainly would not be the first non-state actor to be recognized by law as an enemy power. Manning committed treason. This traitor got off easy. Way too easy.
The university said the Affordable Care Act will add $7.3 million to its healthcare costs next year. It indicated that it could face additional costs in the future because of the law’s tax on especially generous insurance policies.
There is obviously some legitimate debate to be had about the extent and the legality of American surveillance operations. But there is no doubt about the nature of China and Russia. Snowden’s pious invocation of the Nuremberg trials will probably be small comfort to the dissidents and the political prisoners whose cell doors may be locked a little tighter today because of what these authoritarian governments may have learned from his hard drive.
The 1911 is one of the most notorious handguns in history and easily the most famous in America, having seen action in every U.S. conflict since World War I. One of the most successful product designs ever, the 1911 has achieved something rare in the world of machines: immortality. Over a hundred years old, it remains largely unchanged.
In other words, what this document shows is that among the billions and billions of communications the NSA interacts with every year, it has certain low rate of technical errors, many of them unavoidable, which it dutifully records and counts.
In those three vignettes, we see the framework for Alex Rodriguez’s entire career. We see why, despite his record as one of the best baseball players in history, he’s considered a hypocrite, liar, and phony. We see the method by which he sabotaged his own brilliance, and corrupted his legacy forever. We see why he’s spending the twilight of his career as a walking, talking embarrassment, and why he’s become a reliable target of public derision.
The military ties between the United States and Egypt are contentious, unusual by global standards and flush with cash. The U.S. not only gives $1.3 billion in annual military aid to Egypt — when added up over decades it’s the highest amount the U.S. gives to any country besides Israel — but there’s also favorable trade agreements that make it easy for Cairo to buy weapons and equipment from American suppliers.
Here’s the latest piece of that — all 550 tons worth. The 200-foot Ambassador MK III-class fast attack craft is one of the latest buys from the Egyptian regime; complete with ship-sinking missiles, a large main gun and advanced countermeasures. The vessel is designed to be fast and hard to detect, while also being capable of destroying larger, more powerful vessels from up to 67 miles away.
More so than any other leading Republican, Gov. Kasich is using his perch to promote a blend of conservative orthodoxy leavened with liberal policies meant to help the poor, the mentally ill and the uninsured.
Can efforts to promote education deter child labor? We report on the findings of a field experiment where a conditional transfer incentivized the schooling of children associated with carpet factories in Nepal. We find that schooling increases and child involvement in carpet weaving decreases when schooling is incentivized. As a simple static labor supply model would predict, we observe that treated children resort to their counterfactual level of school attendance and carpet weaving when schooling is no longer incentivized. From a child labor policy perspective, our findings imply that “You get what you pay for” when schooling incentives are used to combat hazardous child labor.
Thus, few people are likely to take the time and effort to vote if their sole motivation is narrow self-interest. As Lee explains, most of those who vote do so because they care at least somewhat about the interests of others in society. Even if you care a lot less about your fellow citizens than yourself, it may still be rational to take the time to vote, given that the cost of doing so is low. While most people probably don’t do precise, detailed calculations about the costs and benefits of voting, they do intuitively understand the idea that it may be worth investing a small amount of time and effort to get a small chance at creating a huge benefit for the rest of society if your vote is decisive in helping the “right” candidate win.