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Jim Fawcette
Like tennis, wine, and bad sci-fi.
Like tennis, wine, and bad sci-fi.

Jim's posts

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"Where Did The Women Dems Go?*

Not to a hearing on abuse of women - Muslims.

"In other words, when we speak about Islamist oppression, we bring personal experience to the table in addition to our scholarly expertise. Yet the feminist mantra so popular when it comes to victims of sexual assault — believe women first — isn’t extended to us. Neither is the notion that the personal is political. Our political conclusions are dismissed as personal; our personal experiences dismissed as political.

"That’s because in the rubric of identity politics, our status as women of color is canceled out by our ideas, which are labeled “conservative” — as if opposition to violent jihad, sex slavery, genital mutilation or child marriage were a matter of left or right. This not only silences us, it also puts beyond the pale of liberalism a basic concern for human rights and the individual rights of women abused in the name of Islam.

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White House Warns Reporters Not to Report on Instructions About Not Reporting on Thursday’s Press Conference

Shhuuush. This post is confidential

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Film Portrays Only Bank Prosecuted in Wake of 2008
Big banks were too big to fail, Abacus was small enough to jail

Out of all the dubious, financial manipulation in the subprime, toxic-derivative meltdown, one tiny, community bank serving Chinese neighborhood is the only to be prosecuted. Oh, and Fannie Mae didn't lose a penny on the loans.

"... that’s the story that celebrated documentarian Steve James tells in his latest film, “Abacus: Small Enough to Jail,” which follows the five-year legal saga of the only bank prosecuted for mortgage fraud in the aftermath of the 2008 housing crisis: a family-owned community bank in New York City’s Chinatown."

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Ex-lobbyists swarm Trump administration, despite 'drain the swamp' pledge via +USA TODAY

"WASHINGTON — More than 100 former federal lobbyists have found jobs in the Trump administration despite President Trump’s campaign pledge to restrict the power of special interests in Washington...

And roughly two-thirds of them — 69 — work in the agencies they have lobbied {including} about three dozen recent lobbyists who have not received waivers from Trump’s ethics rule that bar industry insiders and former lobbyists from working on specific matters that benefited their former employers or clients for two years after their appointments."

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Released Personnel Files on 200 Million Voters ... So Now he Heads WH Personnel?

We are truly in the post ironic era. How do you spoof/ satirize this?

Again, for anyone that might have missed this {and I'm astonished this is not headline news } a Republican data analysis firm posted unsecured, a file with personal data on nearly 200 Million voters. I wonder if he put that on his resume' and it got him hired?


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Trump: I Did Not Record Comey


In completely unrelated news, media reports the daughter of Rosemary Woods was seen leaving the White House carrying a CD labelled "Darik's Boot and Nuke". 

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Welfare for Golfers
Or, tax policies that increase inequality

David Leonhardt and Malcolm Gladwell discuss tax policies that exacerbate financial inequality. Gladwell's "Revisonist History" podcast is here:
DL here:

DL: "The mortgage-interest deduction.

"The carried-interest loophole.

"The tax break that applies only to people who get health insurance through their job.

"The tax break for elite colleges that enroll overwhelmingly affluent students.

"In the debut episode of his podcast’s second season, Malcolm Gladwell uncovered an inequality-increasing policy that was new to me. It applies to California law, rather than federal law, and centers on the way that the state’s golf courses avoid paying taxes, legally.

"Essentially, golf courses have persuaded the state to treat their enormously valuable land as almost valueless. As a result, the taxpayers of California are subsidizing the golf games of the state’s wealthiest residents.

The Best Golf Courses in California via @GolfDigest

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Never competed security forms, omitted meeting with Russian spy

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No, Gal Gadot Was Not Underpaid
And, she'll get obscenely rich

Gender pay gap in Hollywood is real but this story is more social media rubbish, so say both CNN and New York mag. Henry Cavil was actually paid less for Superman than Amy Adams was paid to play Lois Lane Why? Adams was an established star and Cavill was not yet one.

One reason for the confusion is that first-time leads, like Gadot and Henry Cavill get "low" pay, both supposedly in six figures. But if the series is a success their deals are renegotiated upwards, simply because they are worth more at the box office after a success than as a no-name. Doh!

Another is that the $14 Million pay for Cavill is based on yet another rumor site with nothing to back it up. But, hey, it's a meme! A meme! Hashtag it Post it! Quick before it goes away !

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Creating a Waze Blocker

We've seen some, partial success in blocking Waze traffic jams by persuading the city government to place "No Through Traffic" signs on key entrances to city streets from the freeway. I discovered that Waze is "obligated to follow traffic laws" {supposedly}. Getting city government to act took 6 months of explaining and nagging (on top of 5 years of warning about the broader, building traffic problems} before they finally acted. We then notified Waze, which claims it will no longer show those residential streets as bypasses for the freeway.

So far, Waze congestion has dropped, I would guesstimate, by 20-30%. One issue is that enforcement is needed, at least on a temporary basis. While enforcing the through-traffic ban is impractical (is there going to be an ID checkpoint?), related offenses such as speeding, and blocking streets can be enforced. Unfortunately, some city councils aren't highly motivated to do the necessary follow-up.

The other problem is that after years of inaction by the city council, a subset of drivers have built the habit of winding through residential streets to avoiding any congestion. A sign is inadequate to change their behavior.

But it is a start to returning our streets to the residents.

Image: This is what happens when Waze diverts three lanes of heavy freeway traffic to twist and wind through residential streets. First, Waze delivers speeders blasting by irresponsibly. Then the volume picks up and the streets become bumper-to-bumper traffic jams. Residents can't get out of cross streets and emergency vehicles are impeded. But, hey, if Waze-heads can't simply wait in line on the freeway, someone has to pay a price, right?

#Waze #WazeTrafficJams #Google

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