Archive for the ‘USA’ tag
Really interesting little chart from the US Census Bureau: the mean center of population as calculated on every decennial census. As I stepped through, I kept wait for it to drift back to the east a bit. Maybe in a few more hundred years…
David Mendoza put together a pretty awesome series of charts of how effective the introduction of the measles vaccine was in stopping new cases across the United States. This one really requires no introduction:
A neat little visual tour of the history of the various causes of death of Americans today. Nothing mind-blowing, and I recommend it as much for its cool technology as its novel insights, but worth a look.
This piece from NYRB is an awesome and brief biography of one of the more interesting and controversial early presidents of the United States: John Quincy Adams. It’s a good read even if you’re not a history buff like me:
John Quincy Adams was a highly principled, hardworking, and patriotic man of great intelligence and integrity. He was complex and full of contradictions, frigid and hot-tempered, confrontational and thin-skinned, devoted to public service and egocentric. He yearned for acclaim and strove for achievement and high political office. But as Fred Kaplan demonstrates in his engaging, well-crafted, and deeply researched biography that puts particular emphasis on John Quincy’s rich life of the mind and draws extensively from his diary this supremely successful diplomat and shrewd practitioner of realpolitik had a personality quite unsuited for a life in politics.
There are pretty charts, and a nice post, but really this piece from Vox is about one thing you may have already suspect:
Two big reasons — prosecution has become more efficient, and prison sentences have lengthened
This may be totally opaque to non-Americans — my best summary is that Jeopardy and Wheel of Fortune are two popular syndicated television show which typically run in the last few hours before prime-time TV but at local broadcaster’s chosen time — but I liked it. Here’s the summary chart, though do definitely click through for WAY more analysis.
A fun little depiction of the insanity that can occur in America’s legal system. Because of a policy change in how an Ohio county recorder’s office made records available to the public — they were going to change $2 per photocopied page rather letting bulk requests be distributed digitally — a case came about in which the best tactic was to refuse to answer a seemly simple question about a the term “photocopy machine” — the New York Times has a new series in which they have dramatized the whole exchange.
My naive answer, as a bit of map-fan and not-completely-geographically-illiterate person was about 10. Turns out it’s more than that. I’ll say no more because I liked Jason Kottke’s reveal.
A conservative writer talks about the American political situation in light of the works of Karl Marx. As someone who’s obsession with my country’s politics is behind me, it’s an interesting analysis. It’s heart is this:
Here’s what Marx got right—profoundly, overwhelmingly, admirably right: capitalism is unforgiving to “conservatives,” those who care about neighborhood, Church, family, loyalty, tradition.
(via Alan Jacobs)