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Month: February 2011

The early reviews are in

… and the VIPs who got invited to a special screening of Atlas Shrugged, Part I in Los Angeles liked what they saw. A lot. One reviewer, Hans Schantz, shared the very same fears — no, the very same certainty — I had as the movie went into production: When I heard my favorite novel was being made into a movie, all the available omens boded ill: a “low-budget” production, with “no-name” stars, made independently – without the adult supervision of a real Hollywood studio, and rushed into production at the last minute to avoid loss of rights. It sounded…


Monday miscellany

Plague death in Chicago: A scientific detective story. Don’t tell your cat-lady friends, but they’re being manipulated. Oh. I expect they already know that. A happier detective story: Finding the lost library of Thomas Jefferson. (NYTimes free subscription link.) How Obamacare is already damaging the U.S. medical system in ways that will be hard to undo even if the Rs are sincere about repealing or defunding it. How to be the luckiest guy on the planet in four easy steps. By James Altucher. You could nitpick the specifics. (I think his third goal sets him up for a fall, in…


Dear City Government:Here’s how to drive out jobs

From a businessman friend who lives in one of those mega-governed states. He sent the following this morning with permission to blog it: One of my clients is developing alternative energy technology. They actually have a pretty good idea, one that might work and be profitable. They built a proof of concept, small-sized version of their product. Now it is time to build a larger one. I suggested they look at a nearby industrial park. It has the power, the space, and a landlord with lots of free space to rent. Everything looked good until they asked about putting up…


Dealing with the sociopath next door (or in DC)

I’m reading The Sociopath Next Door by Martha Stout. The book is about how to recognize and deal with the sort of everyday monster who won’t stab you with a knife but will stab you in the back at work, cut you off at the knees in your endeavors, or be a murderously awful family member or neighbor. Having gotten close to way too many sociopaths in my younger and dumber years, I’m well armored against the type (knock wood). Still, Stout’s book does have some good information, including reports on recent brain studies of sociopaths. Perhaps the most useful…


PsyOps on Senators

Speaking of creepazoid tactics beloved of governments: I’m not sure why Rolling Stone is so scandalized that the U.S. Army in Afghanistan used PsyOps to try to manipulate senators and other power-mongers into sending more troops and more taxbux. I mean, seriously now. It’s illegal. It’s a waste of money. It’s a sneaky attempt to gain more power and influence. It’s business as usual! Where exactly is the news here??? Oh. Maybe the idea that government officials actually have brains to be manipulated? Otherwise, can’t imagine …


Black Ops and HBGary

Ars Technica has a chilling take on how HBGary — the “security” company that sought to expose Anonymous and ended up getting exposed themselves — wrote backdoors for the fedgov. The article is long and technical, but it gives a shudder-inducing glimpse into one tiny corner of the vast paranoid-industrial complex that’s metastasizing around government.


Making Greek yogurt

Way back last summer, when I first experimented with primal nutrition, Winston (in a comment section) mentioned something I’d never heard of at that point: Greek yogurt. Specifically whole milk Greek yogurt. (Primal nutrition means, among other things, kissing all that non-fat nonsense goodbye.) My first reponse was that I didn’t imagine that the small-town grocery stores within my range would have any such thing. Turned out I was partly wrong: Greek yogurt — but only the non-fat varieties — is readily available in the nearby stores. I’ve been buying the plain stuff ever since and mixing it up with…