Sunday Links

Sunday, January 31st, 2010
  • Vikings. Horses. Fire. Vikings and horses jumping through fire. Pictures.
  • If you were planning on donating your own breast milk to Haiti, um, don’t.
  • Here’s a blog post headline I never thought I’d see.
  • The Economist comes up with a really horrible idea for Haiti.
  • Awkward stock photos.
  • South Carolina Lt. Gov. compares welfare recipients to stray animals, then apologizes by saying he is “not against animals.”
  • Rank-and-file employees of Maricopa County terrified of Sheriff Joe Arpaio.
  • Obama nominates Bush holdover to head up the DEA. She has a horrible record, including supporting the de facto ban on medical marijuana research and defending one of the most notorious lying DEA informants in the history of the agency.

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  • 30 Responses to “Sunday Links”

    1. #1 |  Bulucanagria | 

      Looks really cool but, as much as this might be agreeing with PETA, it doesn’t look like much fun for the horses. Unlike PETA, I offer that as an opinion, not as a potential basis for legislation.

    2. #2 |  primus | 

      Not sure why you think the proposal for Haiti is terrible. It looks like the best plan out there. Is there an alternative? Of course, we could just leave them to starve. In the long run that might be the most humane response. If we help them to survive now yet without re-establishing the systems in the country, they will make more babies to die next time there is a disaster. The sum total of misery will increase, not decrease. If however the state is strengthened, infrastructure installed and institutions fostered, when the next disaster occurs (inevitably) there will be at least some place to start to fix it up yet again.

    3. #3 |  Dave Krueger | 

      Rank-and-file employees of Maricopa County terrified of Sheriff Joe Arpaio.

      I wonder how many of these rank-and-file employees were terrified when these same tactics were used against ordinary citizens. Or do they think these methods were invented just for them?

    4. #4 |  tariqata | 

      @primus: It’s a bad emergency plan because there isn’t the infrastructure to support milk banks in Haiti now, and there are more immediate things that need to be done instead of establishing that infrastructure. Formula may not be the best ever way to feed kids, but it’s also good enough provided one has access to safe water, and it’s a lot easier to transport and store formula and water treatment equipment than it is to transport the infrastructure to maintain a milk bank plus the milk itself, which would almost certainly be donated in very small batches. It’s also a lot easier to ensure that there is a sufficient supply of formula since factories can ramp up production on demand, unlike human women. I’m fully in favour of breast feeding, but in emergency situations where a large number of infants have been orphaned or at best separated from their mothers, it doesn’t make sense for relief workers to concentrate on donated breast milk over formula, and I don’t think it would make sense in Canada or the US in the event of a disaster either.

    5. #5 |  Mattocracy | 

      I used to read the Economist regularly. (It real chore to read an entire issue in a week) I have always thought of if it as being rather Libertarian friendly. But…

      Although they are right on in most instances, they always seem to take a statist stance periodically. They supported the bank bailouts, but not the bailout of GM. They argued for keeping troops in Iraq while stating that the invasion was a mistake. They bad mouth just about every African President on the continent for abysmal mismanagement, yet continually call for more foreign aid to be dumped into that continent to be squandered.

      I guess it’s not a perfect publication. I think they just aren’t jaded by the apparent ineptitude of international cooperation. That good things can come from government without it violating human rights in the process. Hmm…maybe it is a silly publication after all.

    6. #6 |  Reggie Hubbard | 

      @ #4

      I think he was talking about the Economist plan. Which, while I don’t agree with it, isn’t as miserable a plan as Radley makes it to be.

      Oh and that Maricopa thing is fucking scary. ASU was supposed to be a safety school for my graduate work (application are in now, wish me luck) but I will not be a resident of a place where “the law” is the thing that the people have to fear most.

      (especially cause I’m one of them pot-smokin’ Libertarians)

    7. #7 |  Cornellian | 

      I read the Economist regularly. It’s far and away the best news magazine in the English speaking world, partly because it’s the only one that forthrightly supports both free markets (which liberals dislike) and personal freedom (which conservatives dislike). And it does it all while reporting news instead of just recycling the usual opinions from the usual talking heads about who’s ahead this week and who’s behind.

    8. #8 |  tariqata | 

      @6: Ooops. Got caught up in the breast-milk story because it really is a dumb, dumb idea!

    9. #9 |  Michael | 

      #2 primus,

      I saw a suggestion that the UN use people alongside Haitian nationals to rebuild the country as was done in East Timur. (?) It sounded a lot better than taking charge of someone else’s country!

      The mistakes we are making are a result of the ignorance of the society that is Haiti. They don’t have much. But, I never heard any of them complaining when I visited there. It was a term way back in sociology class in college, thirty years ago that comes to mind. That term is “relative deprivation” The people who start out with nothing, don’t recognize that they are being deprived. I saw people who lived in stick houses and had dirt floors that were all smiles because of “all they had”! There is little materialism, seen amongst the impoverished.

      The hospital I worked at had three nurses. Most of the nursing care was done by family members. So why was it that the US Army marched into a hospital and kicked all of the relatives out? They decreased the nursing staff to almost nothing! Stupid! Is this an example of US leadership?

      And all we have to do in considering the idea that the economist suggested is to consider how we would feel if another country came into ours, after a disaster of such proportions and started ordering all of us around!? The people of Haiti want to rebuild their country, likely, much more than we do! Considering both Bush and Clinton affected the government negatively in ways, many, Haitians did not approve of, would they be the right ones to take over? I think not. The Haitians are humans, just like you and me. They should be respected and treated as such and not like another dog to kick around and conform to our ideals! I love the Haitian people. I never felt one bit of animosity from the people in Pignon. They accepted me without reservations, even though my skin was white. They are beautiful ebony skinned people!

    10. #10 |  MattJ | 

      Re: The third item.

      I urge everyone to read this:

      She wasn’t writing a book for us to read. She was writing her own diary, and when she heard that other people might read it someday, she CHANGED it because she wanted some of what she wrote left private. The motivations of the folks running the library aside, the fact that the parts of the book that have been objected to are the parts Anne didn’t want me or you or anyone else reading means that we shouldn’t read them.

      When you read those portions of her diary that SHE TOOK OUT, you are intruding on her privacy.

    11. #11 |  ClassAction | 


      Dead people don’t have rights – let alone privacy rights.

      The simple truth of the matter is: The Diary of Anne Frank is amazing precisely because it was NOT originally intended to be published. It’s an extremely candid diary of an unusually bright girl living through one of the most horrible events of modern human history, and STILL managing despite the horror to have a sense of burgeoning adolescence, sexual development, a personal life, etc. Both edited versions of the Diary are inferior to the unedited one because they remove the personal musings which separate the Diary from hundreds of other works about surviving the Holocaust.

      The worst, most unforgivable part of the school’s decision to edit out the burgeoning sexuality is that the Diary contains such honest and innocent musings of a girl who is JUST ABOUT THE SAME AGE AS THOSE WHO WERE SUPPOSED TO BE READING IT IN CLASS. These are likely to be the same thoughts those readers are having at this point in their lives, making the Diary so much more compelling and relatable, and containing such a strong message about the universality of human experience. No wonder our society is so sexually dysfunction when innocent, shameless, age-appropriate musings about the body have to be replaced with tight-lipped, red-faced, “need to know” lectures by health teachers. It’s a shame.

    12. #12 |  MattJ | 

      “The worst, most unforgivable part of the school’s decision to edit out…”

      It wasn’t the school’s decision to edit anything – it was Anne Frank’s.
      I forgive her for editing those parts out. I don’t forgive the people who put those parts back in. If she had lived long enough to restore her diary herself, it would be a completely different matter.

    13. #13 |  random guy | 

      Isn’t it sad when a politician’s critics (us) call a particular politician (Arpaio) a fascist in a non-hyperbolic way for decades, and yet people are still surprised when they behave as such. Every year he gets worse and every year his critics try to make it clear what an authoritarian, lawless, racist, cronying, asshole he really is, yet we are the ones called unreasonable.

      His deputies just illegally search and arrest people, steal evidence, intimidate civil servants, and call in bomb threats to a court house so the police union can make it very clear just how above the law they think they are. But don’t call him a fascist, thats just ridiculous. After all doesn’t everyone know that Americans are not and can never be fascists?

    14. #14 |  ClassAction | 


      Anne Frank is dead. Dead people don’t have any rights. And YOU certainly don’t have any standing to forgive or not forgive anything on Anne Frank’s behalf! Furthermore, literary works exist independently of the people who write them. The unedited Diary is of far greater literary, historical, and social significance than any of the edited versions.

      The school board didn’t switch to the edited version out of respect for Anne Frank’s wishes – it did it because of hysterical hypersensitivity regarding age-appropriate observations of the burgeoning sexual development of adolescents.

    15. #15 |  J sub D | 

      Posthumous congratulations to Anne Frank whose diary has joined Mark Twain’s Huckleberry Finn and J.D. Salinger’s Catcher in the Rye as important works of literature banned by dumbass school authorities in the United States.

      Time to update this site.

    16. #16 |  J sub D | 

      Obama nominates Bush holdover to head up the DEA. She has a horrible record, including supporting the de facto ban on medical marijuana research and defending one of the most notorious lying DEA informants in the history of the agency.

      Insert Pete Townsend lyrics here.

    17. #17 |  Dave Krueger | 

      Fortunately, electronic media makes the total suppression of literature (and almost all other forms of compatible art) almost impossible. Copies can be generated instantly and it would be almost impossible to find or track all the copies.

      But, of course, that won’t keep the government from trying. There is no bigger threat to government (democratic or otherwise) than a mechanism that permits the quick and easy spread of information among the populace (ie: little people).

    18. #18 |  primus | 

      The point I was (badly) trying to make was this; if we just feed them for a couple months and leave them to rebuild on their own we will actually be doing them more harm than good in the long run. By helping rebuild the infrastructure and services and rooting out as much of the corruption which has contributed to the problems of today as we possibly can, we can help the people of Haiti to raise their country to a point where the next disaster can be dealt with more effectively, and will hopefully have less of an impact on the country than the present disaster is having. Whether the current course is followed or changes are made to the methodology matters little so long as these goals are met. If we are not prepared to follow through, we should stay out and let them starve. It would be more humanitarian in the long run.

    19. #19 |  MattJ | 

      Oh, please, Classaction – you’re the one who brought up whether something was unforgiveable. I never claimed to be forgiving or not on anyone’s behalf but my own. I likewise do not forgive her murderers, or the rat who led them to her family.

      As for the motivations of the school board, they are irrelevant as to whether the unedited version of her diary should have been published, or whether we should be reading it.

      The unedited version is of ‘far greater literary, historical, and social significance’ because she talks badly about her mother and expresses lesbian fantasies? Really? Far greater? I thought the main significance was the whole gestapo/holocaust bit. I didn’t realize how much I was missing when I read the version without the stuff she never wanted anyone else to read. I wonder how much I could expand my mind by perusing the diaries of other dead girls.

      In any case, her wishes are irrelevant. She has no rights. As Dave points out, as soon as the full version was published, her wishes went out the window. I never should have spoken up, because as soon as I did, I became a proxy for the school that you can’t yell at.

    20. #20 |  MattJ | 

      J sub D:

      Anne Frank has been on that site for years.

    21. #21 |  Stephen | 

      I can’t help but see this:

      As an inevitable consequence of cops like Arpaio.

    22. #22 |  Aresen | 

      On the first item, all I can say is that those are damned brave horses which must have had incredibly patient training.

      Everything in their own instinct tells them to flee fire. The riders may know that the horses won’t be hurt*, but the horses don’t. The problem is getting them accustomed to going near a fire and to trust their rider to keep them from being hurt.

      *They won’t – although the flame is hot, air has very low heat capacity. Passing through a flame quickly will not allow enough heat transfer to cause injury.

    23. #23 |  snowshine | 

      Anne never edited her diary: she died in the camps. Her father edited the diary after the war. let her words stand in all their glory.

    24. #24 |  M | 

      For what it’s worth, I suggested to my wife that the Dominican Republic should annex Haiti the day after the quake. Also/or that we should declare two years of zero tariffs on Haitian goods in the USA.

    25. #25 |  MattJ | 


      The article I linked to says that your beliefs are a common misconception:

      For years rumors circulated that it was Anne’s father, Otto Frank, who, upon returning from Auschwitz as the sole survivor of his family, edited his daughter’s diaries before they were published. This particular passage was just one of the revelations he allegedly censored.

      However, according to Dineke Stam, an out lesbian who has worked at the Anne Frank House The Anne Frank House on the Prinsengracht in Amsterdam, The Netherlands, is a museum dedicated to Jewish wartime diarist Anne Frank, who hid from Nazi persecution with her family and four other people in hidden rooms at the rear of the building. in Amsterdam for seven years, these rumors about Otto Frank are false. “It was actually Anne herself who did this,” Stam explained in an exclusive interview in Holland. “While she was in hiding, Anne heard a 1944 radio broadcast by the exiled Dutch prime minister, who asked that people keep all their personal diaries and letters so that the world could get an impression of what life was really like for them during the war.

      “Anne had already been writing in her red-and-gray diary since getting it as a gift on her 13th birthday,” Stam says. “After the broadcast she got the idea to rewrite her diary with an eye toward publication one day.”

      She took things out that she didn’t want you to read.

    26. #26 |  Marching to War Should Look This Awesome | Kill Ten Rats | 

      […] Hat tip: Agitator […]

    27. #27 |  Kino | 

      Rank-and-file employees of Maricopa County terrified of Sheriff Joe Arpaio.

      widespread paranoia , classic symptom of an extreme police state.

    28. #28 |  nemo | 

      From my 1970’s adolescence of listening to C & W on the local Frederick, Maryland AM station: The lyrics of ‘The Sheriff of Boone County

      I can’t tell whether Sheriff Joe is trying to live up to a stereotype or not.

    29. #29 |  Leah | 

      The problem with the breastmilk thing is the same as all of the other problematic (as in, non-money) donations (used gym shoes? seriously?) – people here don’t know what people there need. People in Haiti don’t need breastmilk, but they are also made worse off by formula donations, as when the formula donations dry up, so has the breastmilk of lactating mothers (to say nothing of the babies who die from dirty water sources and a lack of immunities in breastmilk).

      I just saw a good post on this blog regarding a sustainable plan:

    30. #30 |  billy-jay | 

      One can only hope that Anne Frank is even now striking a blow against public education.