Archive for November 2008
Perhaps that’s a little over-dramatic, but this is a story that just makes you want to yell, “WHAT THE FUCK!?” An unidentified Walmart employee was killed in Long Island when trampled by a crowd of consumers who had broken the door off its hinges to get inside.
I’m not quite sure what to say. Though I don’t agree with Marco Arment on everything he has to say about the event, I think he captures some of what I’m thinking.
Via MetaFilter, Thomas Weller’s collection of fun and straightforward expressions that are definately not maxims.
Not sure why, but I was rather fascinated by Brendan Koerner’s chronicle of the history of Zima, which finally ceased production a few months ago. It’s an interesting story in the way corporations try to work brands and the invention of beers marketed as non-beers.
There’s no doubt in my mind that this doesn’t capture everyone, but this seems like a reasonable explanation of most of the opposition to the auto industry bailout:
Most Americans simply no longer identify with the domestic auto industry (or with the states of Michigan and Ohio). To the Southerners who now make up the core constituency of the Republican Party, it’s a bunch of coddled, unionized workers trying to get handouts that the South’s auto industry (Toyota, Hyundai, Nissan, Mercedes, BMW …) doesn’t need. To the coastal urbanites and suburbanites who now make up the core constituency of the Democratic Party, it’s an industry that makes crappy big cars and fights against higher fuel efficiency standards. And to the business press it’s the worst thing of all: a trio of companies that are neither exciting nor financially successful.
This thing made me go “Wow!” It’s a map of America’s Interstate highways smoothed into a series of straight lines, like a subway map.
The Economist provides a handy charts with the odd on where President Obama will visit first. Britain’s way ahead, if you’re too lazy to click.
You’ve probably seen this by now, but if you haven’t, now you have.
William Saletan has two recent piece about motherhood that caught my eye. They are, as usual, full of interesting but vaguely tangential ideas.
The first is about grandmother surrogacy:
Take the Japanese case from a couple of years ago. Japanese law treated the child’s gestational mother—the genetic grandmother—as its legal mother. Therefore, the genetic mother had to adopt the child from her own mother. In the Virginia case, the genetic dad ended up telling reporters, “Mommy’s doing fine. Not this mommy. Grandma mommy.” Imagine looking at your mom and realizing that in a way, she’s your sister. Imagine getting into an argument with your mother-in-law over the way you’re raising your kids—religion, discipline, whatever—and realizing that in a way, she’s their mother.
The second is about, well, this: “What’s the next best thing to having your own baby? Having your identical twin’s baby.”