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The most prolific Republican poll spinner was Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky. “The American people,” he advised, “if you average out all of the polls, are opposed to this bill by 55-37.” Apparently unimpressed with the closer margins in the averages posted that day by RealClearPolitics (51 percent oppose, 40 percent favor) and my own site, Pollster.com (51 percent oppose, 42 percent favor), McConnell seems to have devised his own. According to the Associated Press, McConnell arrived at his own using “CNN, NPR and Quinnipiac polls taken at various times in January.” He did not stop there. McConnell also cited a USA Today/Gallup poll showing Americans “opposed to using the reconciliation device” by a 52 percent to 39 percent margin. And later that afternoon he used his concluding remarks to repeat both sets of numbers. –“A Poll for Every Side at Health Summit,” Mark Blumenthal, National Journal
Why did the Marxist-Socialist cross the road?
To get to the Marxist-Socialist sit-in on the other side of the road.
How many Marxist-Socialists does it take to screw in a light bulb?
Two. One to screw in the light bulb, one to lament Milton Friedman’s laissez-faire economic policies.
What’s the difference between a Marxist-Socialist and a Keynesian economist?
Several things, including but not limited to the following: The Marxist-Socialist believes that workers should own the means of production, whereas Keynesians support the private ownership over the means of production. Marxist-Socialists believe that centralized government would ultimately wither away after a revolution, whereas Keynesians advocate greater government action to ensure full societal employment. Finally, a Marxist-Socialist would not be invited to a party that a Keynesian was throwing at work because the Keynesian knows that the Marxist-Socialist would throw a stink about the way the cubicles in the Keynesian’s office were arranged.
The Marxist-Socialist’s mother is so fat, that when the Marxist-Socialist’s mother laments stagflation, she actually stagflates. –“Marxist-Socialist Jokes,” Jesse Eisenberg, McSweeney’s
President Obama: drunk-in-chief? (only if you believe in misleading Internet headlines);
also related: “Gyrocopter beheads man in freak English flying assassination” (note: headline invented; incident not)
On the border, Adam Smith meets magical realism. Here the market tenets of supply and demand, the basic engine of both the migration and the drug industry, are supposed to be overturned magically by a police state. Consider one simple number: The border is 1,900 miles long. If two people slipped through each mile in a 24-hour period, that would amount to 3,800 people a day. That adds up to 1,387,000 people a year. Or consider this: One bridge from Juarez to El Paso handles 600,000 semi-trucks a year. One semi with a freight load of 24 tons could probably tote enough heroin to satisfy the U.S. market for a year. Add to the mix the inevitable corruption of the police agencies: A few months ago, a Border Patrol agent in southern Arizona was busted for running dope in his official car for 500 bucks a load. Few discussions about the border come from facts. Most discussions of the border come from fears. –“The War Next Door: Adam Smith’s invisible hand meets magical realism on the border,” Charles Bowden, High Country News
I recently spent a semester teaching writing at an elite liberal-arts college. At strategic points around the campus, in shades of yellow and green, banners displayed the following pair of texts. The first was attributed to the college’s founder, which dates it to the 1920s. The second was extracted from the latest version of the institution’s mission statement:
The paramount obligation of a college is to develop in its students the ability to think clearly and independently, and the ability to live confidently, courageously, and hopefully.
Let us take a moment to compare these texts. The first thing to observe about the older one is that it is a sentence. It expresses an idea by placing concepts in relation to one another within the kind of structure that we call a syntax. It is, moreover, highly wrought: a parallel structure underscored by repetition, five adverbs balanced two against three.
Percentage of Britons who cannot name the city that provides the setting for the musical Chicago:
An Australian entrepreneur was selling oysters raised in tanks laced with Viagra.
A naked man believed to be under the influence of LSD rammed his pickup truck into two police cars.
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“Shelby is waiting for something. He himself does not know what it is. When it comes he will either go back into the world from which he came, or sink out of sight in the morass of alcoholism or despair that has engulfed other vagrants.”