Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Which Item Will Annoy The Most people?

So the Clippers owner is banned from the NBA for life and likely to be forced to sell the team. Any way the NBA can make sure he gets no more than the $12.5 million fire sale price he paid for the team in 1981? A profit of hundreds of millions ain't a "punishment..."

John Kerry's also in a little trouble for off the record remarks. Using the word "apartheid" in the context of Palestine is entirely acceptable in Israeli domestic politics,, but not in US domestic politics. Kerry's statement reminds me of the classic definition of a gaffe: when a politician inadvertently speaks the truth...

Johnson County's jail diversion program is setting such a good example that other counties are looking to us. One of the key staffers involved, Jessica Peckover, is working with  Wapello County supervisors to bring the program to Ottumwa.

But the House Republicans loaded the mild medical marijuana bill up with killer amendments last night. Clearly, Janet Lyness should be blamed.

Students are voting today, which usually annoys people in Iowa City. (Pro tip: Students also get annoyed when they get stereotyped as stoners, especially this close to finals.) Voting at the UI Main Library from 3 to 7. Also in Cedar Falls from 10:00 am until 4:00 pm at UNI's Maucker Union. The six hour time frame says "petition" and the site says "Kajtazovic." No ID required, here or in Wisconsin.

French (!) author Thomas Piketty's Capital In the 21st Century "has blown up libertarian fantasies one by one" :
The reason a person like the fictional John Galt would be able to rise from humble beginnings in the 1950s is because the Gilded Age rentiers lost large chunks of their wealth through the shocks the Great Depression and the deliberate government policies that came in its wake, thus loosening their stranglehold on the economy and society. Galt is able to make his fortune precisely because he lives in a society that isn’t dominated by extreme concentrated wealth and dynasties. Yet the logical outcome of an economy in which there is no attempt made to limit the size of fortunes and promote greater equality is a place in which the most likely way John Galt can make a fortune is to marry an heiress. So it was in the Gilded Age. So it may be very soon in America.

And this one will annoy my long suffering wife Koni as it combines two of my repetitive humor obsessions: apes and Harry Nilsson's insanely catchy song "Coconut" (as in Put The Lime In The). This is an actual music video made back in the day, four years before Bohemian Rhapsody and a decade before MTV (younger readers: that used to be a channel that showed music videos 24/7). Nilsson was notoriously stage shy and never ever played a live concert in his career.

The economy of the music business would never sustain someone like Nilsson today, a brilliant but quirky artist with marginal sales and the occasional fluke hit who worked exclusively in the studio. How many Nilssons are we losing today because of that?

Bonus: Harry heads insist that the gorilla at the piano is Nilsson's notorious drinking buddy John Lennon.

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