Recent Articles

Horserace campaign coverage, again

Horserace campaign coverage, again

According to The Nation (citing the results of a recent Pew survey) Mainstream media coverage of the 2008 presidential campaign so far has been mostly cynical and vacuous. Nine out of ten campaign stories ignore policy and focus instead on electoral tactics and the horse race, according a recent report from the Pew Research Center’s […]

July 21, 2007 | By | Reply More
Gore on television

Gore on television

Television is part of the American political problem, but not only for the obvious reasons.  See Ebonmuse’s review of Al Gore’s new book, The Assault on Reason.  Here’s an excerpt: [T]elevision is a time- and space-limited medium with high barriers to entry, making it in its essence a medium of the rich and powerful. It […]

July 21, 2007 | By | 1 Reply More
Iraq and cognitive dissonance

Iraq and cognitive dissonance

NPR recently interviewed psychologist Elliot Aronson, co-author, Mistakes Were Made (But Not by Me).   Aronson worked closely with Leon Festinger back in the 1950’s “designing experiments to test and expand dissonance theory.”  Here is NPR’s plug for the interview: We all have a hard time admitting that we’re wrong, but according to a new book […]

July 21, 2007 | By | 2 Replies More
Arbitration Fairness Act of 2007

Arbitration Fairness Act of 2007

Businesses are increasingly inserting arbitration provisions into contracts to prohibit the employees and consumers from resolving important disputes in courts of law. Such arbitration provisions compel the employees and consumers to present his or her case to an “private arbitrator,” who need not even be an attorney. There is no jury trial. There is no automatic right to engage in pre-trial discovery. There is no public access. There need not even be an in-person hearing (unless you pay extra). The arbitrator often has the right to decide the entire case by merely looking at paperwork and you might not even have a right to be there when it happens.

If the arbitrator fails to apply the law correctly or if the arbitrator refuses to consider important evidence, too bad. There is no appeal. There is no accountability. Your claim against a big company will simply disappear. And here’s another huge concern: the big corporations are repeat customers to the big arbitration companies, while you will be a one-time player. Under these circumstances, who is the arbitrator likely to favor?

[more . . .]

July 21, 2007 | By | 7 Replies More
Sunk costs are irrelevant to future decisions

Sunk costs are irrelevant to future decisions

It always pains me to see powerful leaders fail to understand the concept of sunk costs. In this case, the leader I refer to is Maj. Gen. Rick Lynch, commander of the 3rd Infantry Division in Iraq, who recently expressed the mistaken belief that America’s past death toll of U.S. troops in Iraq should somehow […]

July 20, 2007 | By | 7 Replies More
Maher: Founding Fathers would have rejected Bush

Maher: Founding Fathers would have rejected Bush

Bill Maher writes this on Huffpo: America was invented by liberal men in Boston and Philadelphia. Not that I don’t love all of America, but rednecks who think they’re the real America should read a history book once in a while. George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Franklin, Madison — the whole lot of them were well […]

July 20, 2007 | By | 3 Replies More
Pope says all other religions are defective

Pope says all other religions are defective

I wouldn’t make this up. It was reported on MSNBC today. Pope Benedict XVI has reasserted the universal primacy of the Roman Catholic Church, approving a document released Tuesday that says Orthodox churches were defective and that other Christian denominations were not true churches. How does the Pope know this?   Hey, he just knows.  Just […]

July 18, 2007 | By | 10 Replies More
Al-Qaida flourishing in Iraq?  They can thank George Bush.

Al-Qaida flourishing in Iraq? They can thank George Bush.

According to this article, Al-Qaida can thank George Bush for its growing power in Iraq.  Though Saddam had no taste for Al-Qaida terrorists, because the belonged to the wrong branch of Islam, Al-Qaida has apparently flourished under George Bush’s military occupation.  So much for winning the war on terrroism.

July 17, 2007 | By | 3 Replies More
Tolerance

Tolerance

A Hindu chaplain was invited to say the opening prayer in the Senate and some christians slipped in to protest, disrupting the prayer, and generally making fools of themselves and presenting the face of their faith which causes those who feel religious belief is something everyone ought to get over and soon to feel more […]

July 17, 2007 | By | 3 Replies More