Daily Glimpse December 5, 2013


Daily Links From Glimpse From a Height

  • Who Really Betrayed Detroit?
    From Steven Malanga at City Journal: Most press accounts note that city-worker pensions in Detroit are modest. They rarely mention that, for two decades, the city supplemented those pensions with annual, so-called “13th checks” for retirees—an additional monthly pension payment. Pension-fund trustees—themselves city workers, retirees, city residents, and elected officials—handed out nearly $1 billion in […]
  • Paging Cleavon Little
    Obamacare isn’t helping Democrats with white women: Remarkably, only 16 percent of blue-collar white women have a favorable view of Obamacare. They disapprove of it by a 4-1 ratio. (The poll found 21 percent did not know enough about the ACA to hold an opinion.) These voters are by no means a strongly Democratic group: Obama […]
  • A New Maunder Minimum?
    Still not very many sunspots: But scientists are watching the sun carefully to see whether cycle 24 is going to be an aberration—or if this solar calmness is going to stretch through the next cycle as well. “We won’t know that for another good three or four years,” said Biesecker. Some researchers speculate this could […]
  • Flashback: Orchids
    From January, 2009: “He’s from Hawaii, O.K.?” said Mr. Obama’s senior adviser, David Axelrod, who occupies the small but strategically located office next door to his boss. “He likes it warm. You could grow orchids in there.” Coloradoans, right now, as I write this, it’s -9 in Denver.  Minus.  Nine.  Remember this when you get […]
  • Top Complaints About Offices
    Noise.  Everything else is practically non-existent by comparison: The worst part, according to the data, is that these office workers can’t control what they hear — or who hears them. Lack of sound privacy was far and away the most despised issue in the survey, with 60% of cubicle workers and half of all partitionless people […]
  • Obama Changes Course, Accepts China Air Defense Zone
    And people wonder why the world thinks we’re unreliable: Japan, a vital American ally, has expressed fury over the Chinese move and ordered its commercial airliners not to provide information about their flight paths to the Chinese military. By contrast, the United States made a point of flying a pair of B-52s through it last […]
  • Unbuilt London
    Urban transport as it never was.  Some of these are pretty cool, others are a little silly, and some are outright desecrations.
  • What is Gene Therapy?
    An explanation of why it’s so hard: Several early efforts at gene therapy have focused on diseases of the blood, inherited anaemia, immune deficiencies, and blood clotting disorders. In these cases, the theory is relatively simple. But, in practice, gene therapy has proved much harder than we might have expected. Lots of promising technologies never make […]
  • Perils and Promise of Working Remotely
    From a company that waded in at the shallow end, and is now trying it full-time.  The good, and the bad. NO COMMUTING! Cutting out the commute means that if you’re working from home, you can spend the time you would be commuting exercising, gardening, cooking, or whatever it is you’d rather be doing than […]
  • Wittes on Drones
    Benjamin Wittes takes Eugene Robinson to task for getting just about everything wrong about drones: Over at the Washington Post, columnist Eugene Robinson has a piece decrying the morality of drone strikes—a piece that expresses with an admirable economy of words nearly every conceptual error one can make on the subject. Let’s dissect…. …“I don’t see how drone strikes […]
  • Theodore Dalrymple on the Pope’s Economics
    While sympathizing with the impulse to find consumerism disotasteful, Dalrymple points out what ought to be obvious by now: He writes, inter alia, that ‘Today everything comes under the laws of competition and the survival of the fittest, where the powerful feed on the powerless.’ This is demagoguery of the purest kind, the kind that ruined […]
  • Political John Doe Investigation in Wisconsin
    In a link-filled guest post for Legal Insurrection, Wisconsin Watchdog report Matt Kittle details what looks like abuse of prosecutorial discretion in Wisconsin, operating secretly but within the law, targeting Governor Scott Walker. There’s a secret war being waged in Wisconsin, and the outcome could have national ramifications on free speech and the rule of […]
  • Shazam for Neo-Nazi Music
    German police are building an app that will identify right-wing music: Many themes and ideas can get media placed on the list including, “indecent, extremely violent, crime-inducing, anti-Semitic or racist material,” as well as “media content that glorifies National Socialism… and to media content that discriminates against specific groups of people.” This is the law […]
  • Triathletes And Pain
    Apparently, they handle it differently from the rest of us: In the tests, the triathletes could discern pain just as well as non-athletes, but they felt it with less intensity and were able to withstand it longer. The researchers explain that detecting pain is a relatively straightforward sensory experience, whereas evaluating pain and being willing […]