June 6th, 2012

mathman

links: the webOS story, businesses forced to serve gay couples?, dad on NPR!

- Pre to postmortem: the inside story of the death of Palm and webOS - an epic tale of webOS from start to finish. A very well-researched piece by The Verge. It was somewhat cathartic to read, but I'm just about done cathartizing myself over webOS.

- NM Court: Company Can’t Discriminate against Same-Sex Commitment Ceremony - I'm not sure how I feel about this. It's clearly discrimination, but should private businesses be allowed to discriminate against gay couples? Of course, they aren't allowed to discriminate on the basis of race, but there's just something weird about forcing a photographer to take pictures of a couple they don't want to. (I can't imagine the pictures would be any good!)

- Analysts Try To Define Romney's Foreign Policy - hey, my dad got interviewed on NPR!

- In a story that's weird on many levels, the Department of Defense just happened to have two better-than-the-Hubble telescopes lying around that they gave away to NASA. From the article:
This is the state of our military-industrial-scientific complex in miniature: The military has so much money that it has two extra telescopes better than anything civilians have; meanwhile, NASA will need eight years to find enough change in the couches at Cape Canaveral to turn these gifts into something they can use. Anyone else find anything wrong with this state of affairs?

- Politifact, Politifact, Who Is The Truthiest Of Them All? - offered without comment, except that those graphs looks statistically significant.

- What Guide Books Tell Foreign Visitors to the U.S. - be on time, don't discuss politics, and give people personal space!
mathman

Drift review

Drift: The Unmooring of American Military PowerDrift: The Unmooring of American Military Power by Rachel Maddow

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I can't believe a Rachel Maddow book got a back cover blurb from Roger Ailes!

The book laments the fact that it's too easy for us to go to war today, between a much stronger executive power (which she traces back to Reagan - good coverage of Grenada and the Iran-Contra scandal), huge roles for military contractors, and the fact that calling up the National Guard/Army reserves is no longer a big deal (they've been serving in Iraq and Afghanistan for the last 10 or so years). She also touches on the fact that maaaaybe we shouldn't maintain such a large nuclear arsenal, and points out that it's very hard to make a smaller armed forces even when there are some parts (like our nukes) that aren't nearly as necessary anymore.

(paper copy, available for borrowing)

View all my reviews