Press "Enter" to skip to content

Author: Claire


I knew I hated to travel, even aside from (and even before) the TSA made things worse. I am stranded in the Miami airport. I arrived here with — so I thought — plenty of time to board my connecting flight to Parts Unknown. But no … the online company that ticketed me set me up with “only” an hour and 45 minutes between my arrival and my scheduled departure. Turns out that I must check in two hours before the flight or no go. (Yes, I knew about the recommendation to arrive early at the airport very early for…

Leave a Comment

Soros and “the ultimate bubble”

Lessee … he calls it “the ultimate bubble.” Then a couple of weeks later, George Soros doubles his gold holdings. What’s that about, I wonder? —– Writing to you from today’s first airport, where I managed to get through “security” with nothing worse than a pat-down search and a hand swabbing. And why did they choose me for a pat-down? Because the baggy Thai-style pants I was wearing had large (obviously empty) pockets. The hand swabbing, apparently, is now part of the routine. I changed from pants to skirt as soon as I got through Checkpoint Charlie. Don’t want to…

Leave a Comment

“I’m leaving on a jet plane …”

Whew. All that philosophizing I’ve done in the last week has worn me out. I need a vacation! Oh … wait. I’m already taking one. In fact, I’m leaving this afternoon for the Big City, then heading to Parts Unknown — Furrin’ Parts, even! — early tomorrow. Won’t be back for nearly a month. But I’ll be in touch. Sometimes, I’ll be in the wilds — those deep, dark places where they don’t even have modems, let alone wifi. But thanks to the magic of delayed post-scheduling, when I do land in (relative) civilization, I should be able to throw…


Will Grigg: The most liberating word

I expect a lot of people will have already seen this piece from the amazing Will Grigg today. But I just had to have it here for posterity. “The most liberating word” is NO. (And would that the Rs really were “the party of no,” as the Ds have taken to calling them. Then we might have a shot at political freedom. Instead, the responsibility of “no” falls to us.)


Comfort with complexity, III: Simplicity lies beyond

“I would not give a fig for the simplicity this side of complexity, but I would give my life for the simplicity on the other side of complexity.” — Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr. “Life is so complex that government efforts to regulate and control it are doomed to fail, just as the Austrians say. And life is simple in the principles we use to guide us.” — Paul Bonneau —– Part I here. Part II here. Now we’re at the final installment, and reading Paul Bonneau’s comment above, I wonder if maybe I should just leave it at what he…


Monday Miscellany

For anybody who’s been wondering, I expect to have the third (and probably final) post on “Comfort with Complexity” tomorrow. Been cogitating on it. Quote of the day: “One … of the chief differences between an adult and a juvenile is that the adult knows when he is an ass while the juvenile never does.” — Eric Hoffer (1902-1983) American author, philosopher, and longshoreman Census: the good, the bad, and the ugly: Here’s a constitutionalist view of the census including its legal history and updated information on the potential penalties for refusing cooperation. OTOH, I’ve been trying to find an…


The buzz on Google’s arrogant goof

I didn’t pay much attention earlier this week when Google announced Buzz. Didn’t get too flapped when the t00bz immediately started buzzing with complaints about privacy, either. Yawn, what else is new? Privacy horror stories are par for the course for social-networking sites, and aside from that, those sites are mostly boring as dirt. (Who wants to know about other people’s trivial daily activities?) But I’m thinking this new Google mess — even after the alleged fixes — is a different order of magnitude. The former “do no evil” people did four really evil things: They forced a Buzz account…


Encounter in a small town

ACT I, SCENE I A restaurant reminiscent of the Hog Trough Grill & Feed. It is mid-afternoon and only two tables are occupied. A MAN and WOMAN enter and seat themselves at a booth toward the back. Immediately, they notice a one-foot tall, brightly colored, three-sided CARD. There is one on every table. From the lack of ketchup stains, wrinkles, and fingerprints, the enormous cards appear to be newly placed. The woman plucks the card from their table. WOMAN (READING): United States Census 2010. It’s SAFE! It’s EASY! It’s IMPORTANT! It’s used to allocate more than $400 billion of federal…


Comfort with complexity, II: Labels

This is the second in a series on freedom and the ability to deal comfortably with complexity. Part one is here. In a couple of recent comment threads (here and here) Kevin Wilmeth lamented dependence on labels and the human craving to identify with groups. At the risk of misinterpreting him, I’ll paraphrase: Labels are limiting because they can never express all the variations that fall within their scope; and our need to identify as part of a group often means we give ourselves permission to stop thinking as soon as we’ve concluded, “I’m an X” or “So and so…


Shah Rukh Khan’s autographed body scans

Ohhhh, I’m waiting for these to show up in a Google image search. Shah Rukh Khan is pretty darned sexy, even in images that don’t show all his … er, endowments. But (unless this claim turns out to be a publicity stunt by the Bollywood star), thanks to airport body scanners — you know, those machines that never, ever, ever preserve images of our nekkid bodies — autographed views of him in his (so he claims) full glory are already floating around in the world, or at least Heathrow Airport. Oh, lucky us, huh? Just think what future stars our…