Friday, December 28, 2012

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Gun 'Control' Is Not Enough -


NC can do so much better.

Thai Buddhist Monks Struggle to Stay Relevant -

I wonder what the monk segment will look like on the World Newspaper Congress program for Thailand next year?

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Petition | Walmart: Stop Selling and Advertising Assault Weapons in Your Stores! |

The petition is a step in the right direction.

Obama’s Gun Test -

I posted this comment on this excellent column from Roger COHEN:
"What I would like to hear, first, from the President is this: "There are too many guns in America. We need to work aggressively to reduce their number. I am, today, announcing a new "national policy" that urges everyone to refrain from buying guns, to render owned guns inoperative, and to advocate this with neighbors, friends and family. As a means of executing this policy, I am announcing a target reduction of 25% before the end of my Presidential term." "
If that number can't be reached, then how about 15% in 2015, 25% in 2025, and 35% in 2035? 

Newtown Shooting: Investment Firm Drops Stake in Bushmaster Owner - ABC News

We need to press for more companies to get out of this business, however lucrative it may be.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Bloomberg Urges Obama to Take Action on Gun Control -

I agree. Let's see Presidential Objectives and insist that they be achieved! Speak, Mr. President.

Saturday, December 15, 2012

In Public 'Conversation' on Guns, a Rhetorical Shift -

We need to make the prevalent term "gun reduction".

Do We Have the Courage to Stop This? -

I don't think the problem is a failure to regulate. It is an absence of commitment to reduce the number of them.

Marseille | Marseille : l'arsenal servait-il le grand banditisme ? | La Provence

The challenge is not limited to the US and I would call on President HOLLANDE to do the same thing.

What I would like the President to say and do in response to the shooting tragedy in Connecticut

It's quite simple, I want him to announce that we have a new national policy, established by the White House, aimed at reducing the number of firearms in the United States. To implement that policy, I want him to announce not a goal, but a specific objective of reducing the number of firearms in the US by 25% before the end of his Administration. We can judge the success of his Presidency by how well he does.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

World’s Population Living Longer, New Report Suggests -

I wonder what percentage of NC tobacco winds up being shipped to countries where more people are dying due to cancer. This story addresses the tobacco issue in more detail.

Thursday, December 06, 2012

Disability treaty

Jon STEWART on his Daily Show summed up Republicans perfectly for me in "reporting" on the treaty rejection vote. He said something close to "Republicans hate the United Nations more than they like helping people in wheelchairs". That really sums them up for me.

Wednesday, December 05, 2012

Bob Costas Keeps His Focus on Guns and Violence -

Too much waffling for me.

Campaign in Haiti to Close Orphanages -

We follow Haiti at such a great distance for the country being so close. Such a shame.

Tuesday, December 04, 2012

GOP opposition sinks UN disability rights treaty; a frail Bob Dole makes Senate appearance - The Washington Post

What a sad day for the United States, and so much sadder for people with disabilities all over the world. As a US citizen, I could not be more embarrassed.

Monday, December 03, 2012

Bob Costas advocates gun control during half time show. Did he cross a line? -

I could not possibly be more supportive of the comments made by Bob COSTAS.

Sunday, December 02, 2012

Dogs v. humans saying hellow

Isn't it interesting how most dogs instantly want to walk over and greet a passer-by? Maybe it's to jump, occasionally to snap, but always to engage, or, if you are lucky, to give a friendly lick! Think about that the next time you pass any person anywhere. Why are we so different and less social?

Monday, November 26, 2012

A Minimum Tax for the Wealthy -

Close Guantánamo Prison -

It's sad to be reminded of the disappointments - inexcusable - from the first four years.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Learning From Lincoln -

Having seen the film, extremely well said!

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Stop American Tragedies; Introducing the BeProud Movement | Facebook

I'd sure like to know about this guy and his project - from someone other than he who is knowledgeable, and preferably is a reporter.

Friday, November 16, 2012

Letter Raises Questions About When BBC Ex-Chief Learned of Abuse Cases -

The Board of The New York Times Company ought to reflect on whether they will lose more hanging on to THOMPSON or by thanking him for a few days of service and wishing him well in his future nendeavors and defense.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Serge JULY

The cofounder of Liberation said in Nice the other day that the two most important attributes for a reporter are curiosite and an aller voir spirit. Curiosity and a need to go see for her/himself. It was a good session at CUM but the "moderator" held his microphone as though he were eating a dark chocolate ice cream cone! It's too bad they don't stream/archive the events. JULY also lamented the huge cutbacks at El Pais, Haaretz and the Guardian plus the end of the print edition of Newsweek. If doing it today, he would add the sharp cuts at Sud-Ouest to that list.

Monday, November 05, 2012

Mark Thompson and BBC Missed Red Flags in Savile Scandal -

This still does not answer for me a much more important question. With all of the apparent knowledge of SAVILE at the BBC, at least at the rumor level, why was the Director General not running an organizaiton the entire time he was there that would have heard those allegations and acted upon them. Surely, no competent executive would have simply said that this happened on someone else's watch. Why did THOMPSON not organize the organization such that this would have been addressed long ago? That, to me, is the core question, not simply the issue around the aborted broadcast at the end of last year.

Sunday, November 04, 2012

Newspapers are my physical fitness program

I cannot think of a better way to get in good walking exercise than to walk - if you can - from wherever you are to find a printed newspaper that you can pick up and bring back with you. My goal is to do that every day and I come pretty close to that - maybe 6 days out of seven - over the course of a year. Surely 5 out of 7 at an absolute minimum. Newspaper ought to figure out a way to reinforce the value in doing so adding the exercise to what one can do with the contents of a newspaper!

Saturday, November 03, 2012

Mormons in the Middle East | PRI's The World

I am incredibly uncomfortable with the idea of "President" ROMNEY dealing with Israel. This just further complicates that picture. Will he deal with Israel as the servant of NETANYAHU or of someone in Salt Lake City? We have not seen many other choices so far.

Young Mormon Women Jump at the Chance to Become Missionaries at 19 -

I continue to worry a lot about having a Missionary-In-Chief in the White House, and am unconvinced that ROMNEY can separate himself from stuff like this while there should he be elected.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Is Mark Thompson the Right Man for the Job? -

I think the whole matter can be addressed best by a forum in which THOMPSON agrees to answer questions of all kinds from Times employees and customers (readers, online customers, customers of other products and services) about all aspects of this. If he has solid answers for why he shouldn't have known more about this while at the BBC, he can sail confidently into the office at the NYT Co. with his name on it. If not, ...... It's a risk.....worth taking.

Monday, October 29, 2012

"With Arrest, Sexual Abuse Case Tied To Late BBC Host Widens" -

The New York Times Company, of course, can hire anyone it chooses to be its CEO. But if it were my decision to make, I would insist on a public explanation - and discussion - with Mr. THOMPSON on the point raised in this article, and whether that is his management style - the one he plans to bring to New York?

 "“The big failing internally, and this is where Mark comes into the picture, is the deliberate incuriosity of the senior executives,” said Mr. Elstein, who formerly worked at the BBC. “There is a culture of avoiding knowledge so as to evade responsibility.”"

Saturday, October 27, 2012

"The Company Romney Keeps" -

I agree completely about SUNUNU and I also think there is a lot more "company" worth careful review.

Friday, October 26, 2012

"Sununu Suggests Powell's Endorsement of Obama Was Based on Race" -

SUNUNU, charitably, is not a nice person. I think that says it all.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Blogger Facing Sanction Quits Mormon Church -

I still believe that we do not want the White House all tangled up in this stuff. Let the Mormons be Mormons, but not on watch at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue!

"A Landslide for Obama (If the World Got to Vote)" -

It sure makes one stop and think why the world thinks the way it does and the US seems to have so many who feel otherwise.

British Lawmakers Question Ex-BBC Chief’s Role -

This still does not address what he "should" have known. It is hard to imagine an engaged chief executive of anything being able to successfully use the defense of "I did not know" when the matters at issue are so serious. Why didn't he know? What does it tell us about his management? What might it predict about how he would run the NYT Company?

Remind me again why it is that we cannot submit comments, for posting, on a story like this?

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Prosecutors to Review Cases in BBC Abuse Scandal From 2009 -

This is the subject that Mr. THOMPSON needs to address forthrightly “It seems to me a much more serious scandal is whether for something like 20 years one of Britain’s best-known personalities was able to get away with serial child abuse. That would be historically shocking.” - from the linked story.

Mark Thompson Says He Did Not Block BBC Savile Program -

But the point is really whether Mr. THOMPSON knew or should have known about the allegations while he headed the BBC. Simply not knowing is not a good enough response, if it is true.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

hankTimes Must Aggressively Cover Mark Thompson's Role in BBC's Troubles | The Public Editor -

Bravo! Thank goodness someone has spoken up clearly on this!

"BBC Episode Examines Its Own Sex Scandal" -

I think the NYT Co. has a lot of quesitoning it needs to do of Mr. THOMPSON before he takes over. And most of that should be done in public!

Monday, October 22, 2012

Elections USA 2012 : Le 20h avant l'heure : les années françaises de Mitt Romney - Monde - TF1 News

Why was this left to be a French story only? Where is the kind of shoe-leather reporting by US reporters that you can see here from France's largest private TV channel's main news report this evening?

The Undisclosed Mitt Romney -

I honestly don't care what we know or don't know about Mitt ROMNEY. What I do care about is whether his presidency would wind up being hiddne in the same manner, and I think there is a very good chance of that happening. For that reason, alone, I simply don't want him to be our President.

Saturday, October 20, 2012

"The Least Popular Campaign Subject (Gun Control!)" -

One thing in this abysmal picture seems clear to me. If ROMNEY is elected, we will see zero new restrictions on guns of any kind. If President OBAMA returns, I can only hope he will do the right thing in his second term. It's our only chance.

"Allegations of Abuse Against Jimmy Savile Multiply" -

I am quite troubled by Mark THOMPSON's quote in the Times that he was unaware that this might be happening. It was his job as head of the BBC to know this and that's what he should have said. And he should have apologized for not doing his job well. What will he not "know about" at the NYT Co and therefore have no responsibility? He is not exhibiting the courage and sense of responsibility that I continue to associate with the NYT Co.

Friday, October 19, 2012

"Recycling Helps, but It’s Not All You Do for the Environment" -

"Gun Control Goes Ignored in the Campaign" -

I cannot overstate my disappointment in the President on this one. And ROMNEY is simply appalling. The fact that he is so bad does not make OBAMA look better than he is on this issue. He is bad and ROMNEY is so much worse.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

"Mormons and Scouts Act as Partners in Molding Boys" -

I remain extremely uncomfortable with the idea of any Mormon as the US President. Mormons are entitled to think whatever they like, and practice their religion without restriction, but I cannot separate all of that from the woman or man in the White House. More important, I don't think a Mormom President can either.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

"Pakistan Erupts in Anger Over Taliban’s Shooting of Malala Yousafzai" -

Why do we need this tragedy to stand up, together, for the rights of all women, all children, all people -- equal rights everywhere?

"What I Brought Home - Interactive" -

Ah, the collection.

Tuesday, October 09, 2012

Malinea Conseil : Malinea

This woman was quite impressive here today Catherine BARBA.'

Malinea Conseil : Malinea

This woman was quite impressive here today Catherine BARBA.'

"2020 : la fin du e-commerce… ou l’avènement du commerce connecté ?" - FEVAD

This was part of the Decathlon piece here today

E-réserv@tion - - Achat facile

Interesting piece about the evolution of this store into a part web part bricks and mortar success - today on this program

Monday, October 08, 2012

"The Cacophony of Money" -

I think this is a lot more complicated than the Times presents it to be. How can we square the fact that it usually costs money for most people to speak loudly and our commitment to speech freedom. Just because someone can spend the money and speak more loudly, while others cannot, does that make her/his speech more in need of restriction than the speech of someone with no money at all? By that logic, it may be that especially creative protesters need some extra restraint as well, lest their point of view wind up reaching more people because of their ingenuity? I am presenting that as an extreme, and only to make the point that the real truth lies somewhere between covert political contributions and kneejerk negativism about the Citizens United US Superme Court decision.

Sunday, October 07, 2012

"Can I Phone a Friend?" -

The President will surely take this all on board, and we'll all get to decide in coming weeks whether he has proven himself, or not. So far.....?

Saturday, October 06, 2012

"Romney's Threat to Big Bird Sows Confusion Abroad, and Feeds It at Home" -

It continues to be as scary as it can be to realize that the voters likely to decide on our next President are do ill-informed and seemingly incapable of fixing that.

"Don’t Mess With Big Bird" -

Count me in with Big Bird, too!

The Times Pays Tribute to Arthur Ochs Sulzberger -

Wednesday, October 03, 2012

"James Gordon Bennett Jr., a Master of Time Zones" -

Nice piece. What I like best about BENNETT is his wise choice of Beaulieu sur/Mer as the place to live for a substantial portion of the time he was running the Paris Herald.

Monday, October 01, 2012

"Remembering Punch Sulzberger" -

"Punch Sulzberger and His Times" -

I cannot adequately express my feelings yet about the loss of a great man, and a great friend.

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Decrypting the Debate

At least one of the television channels here is already promising to decrypt the first US Presidential debate next Wed. I bet a lot of voters in the US would benefit from that as well as people in France!

"Barack Obama bloque l'achat par des entreprises chinoises de fermes éoliennes dans l'Oregon" - Le Monde

What a challenging issue. I cannot help but wonder what it means when it comes to other foreign investment in the US and US investment in other countries. My first reaction is negative.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Behind the Blizzard - Blizzard Fan Club - Dairy Queen

Web Site Editor May Face Mormon Excommunication -

Mormons are free to behave as bizarrely as they choose and, in fact, I'd defend to the literal death their right to do so. Mitt ROMNEY may or may not approve of what is described here. Someone, I hope, will ask him. If he does not approve, then we need to know more about why, for what reasons - what woud that answer tell us about him? If he approves, then I would worry tremendously about the extent to which this sort of Mormon thinking is ROMNEY's own. What would he say as President about dissent? What would he say about the need for conformity? What would he say about what is done openly and what is done secretly? It seems to me to be fair ground to ask him many more questions about how he relates to his faith in terms of actions taken. In this story, I am far less concerned about the Mormon kicking someone out because of criticizeing ROMNEY - which does not seem to be the case anyway - than I am about what it tells us about how Mormons govern, see things, and think. On those points, ROMNEY deserves many more questions.

Monday, September 03, 2012

LDS blog calls NBC report 'evenhanded' |

Whether it was or not, there are just so many unanswered questions about the relationship between Mitt ROMNEY and this church. What directions does he take from the church, and how might those directions conflict with his Presidency? Given the radical shifts the church has made in the past, what happens if they do that again in a way that runs counter to US interests. How can we be sure he will pick us over them? Do we just have to take his word for it?

Thursday, August 30, 2012

The Risks And Rewards Of Romney's Faith Story : NPR

Made in the U.S.A. -

Righ on, Roger! We need a lot of this sort of commentary. Why can't we get back to "it takes a village"?

Made in the U.S.A. -

Righ on, Roger! We need a lot of this sort of commentary. Why can't we get back to "it takes a village"?

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Errol Morris Takes on MacDonald Murder Case -

How the Republicans Built It -

I hope the Democrats do a much better job of truth telling, but I worry whether ot not they will.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

A Growing Interest in Mormons Serving Missions Around the World | PRI's The World

I'd love to know the sales pitch that these people are taught in Utah. That's just my curiosity, but what is much more important to know is this - once you are a Mormon missionary as ROMNEY has been, do you ever stop being one? In other words, he is still supposed to be recruiting people to join his church? And, back to overseas, who are some of the people he recruited, successfully or unsuccessfully, in France and what do they say today?

Monday, August 20, 2012

Aboard the Ellen McAllister , All Is Quiet b ut the Churn of the Motor -

What are Mormon women like? Do Mormons believe in equality of men and women? |

Mormons are entitled to believe whatever they like and I would defend to the death their right to believe and say whatever they choose. The only thing I care about here is the impact of Mormon beliefs on a man who wants to be President of the United States. I surely do not want someone who believes as this link suggests, that men are somehow supposed to be bread winners and women are supposed to manage the household. There is nothing equal about that, and I want to know what Mr. ROMNEY believes and will advance as President. Does he believe in full equality for the sexes, or not?

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Why Waiting in Line Is Torture -

I love the make-em-walk-more solution!

Criticism Greets List of Debate Moderators -

People who are disappointed at not winning beauty contests should chill out, and maybe should not place themselves in contention next time around.....?

Thursday, August 16, 2012

ROMNEY taxes

Why not ask Mr. ROMNEY if he believes he has paid the taxes that he thinks someone in his position should pay. If he believes he should have paid more, ask him to pay the difference going back to the beginning of his tax-paying days?

For Obama and Romney, a To-Do List for Travelers -

Years After Haiti Quake, Safe Housing Is Dream for Multitudes -

It remains a great embarrassment to me and should be to all people in the US that we cannot plot a course that helps the Haitian people sustainably.

Can't Afford Foreign Aid, or Can't Afford to Cut It? - Room for Debate -

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Ann Romney Refuses to Release More Tax Returns -

If she is echoing her husband's views, do we want someone in the Presidency who fundamentally believes that the more we release, the more we get attacked? That's not the way - as I see it - that the federal government ought to operate. Instead, one should start with everything public and then work back, if necessary to accept some restrictions. What scares me here is the "need to know" attitude. The taxes are important, but not that important. It's the mentality, stupid, one might say.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012


I am doing my best to learn more about Mormons because I want to understand Gov. ROMNEY better. What I am finding is that the church seems to operate on the basis of "need to know" for the rest of us. There is a good deal of textbook information about the religion on web, but try to learn what we all generally can learn from the websites of local churches and you run into password protected spaces, sometimes clearly market - members only! Two things still bother me. One is the wearing of white-only in the temple; it has to be more complicated than trying to make everyone look the same. At least it seems that way to me. And the barring of the rest of us from the temple because, as one Mormon told me, is the "house of the Lord", really bothers me. I am uncomfortable with beliefs that say because of what we believe, we get to enter the Lord's house, but the rest of you must wait outside.

Monday, August 13, 2012

Saving Private Romney -

This is a goo discussion of the issues as Roger COHEN sees them. I think the debate needs to be more fundamental than debt.It is about what truly are America's (and Americans') obligations to our fellow citizens and residents.These are unusual "obligations" because here we get to pick which ones we assume. And so we will in November. As COHEN suggests, let's make this a debate about ideas and principles and policies and not a choice between two - or four - men. The debate itself can shape what the ultimate victor does either startind in early November or in late January.

The Romney Package -

I hope events in coming weeks do not take our eyes off the heart of these pieces in today's The New York Times. This editorial is excellent. For me, the subjects addressed in this story are especially key; I find myself opposed to almost every position taken by Paul RYAN here.

Sunday, August 12, 2012


Why not divide up the Olympics among multiple venues? The millions viewing on television would not know the difference, and crowds in multiple cities could enjoy one or more hosted event.

WAN-IFRA - 64th World Newspaper Congress - 19th World Editors Forum

I certainly hope this turns out to be a success, but somehow in looking again at the program, it is hard to find the excitement that the newspaper needs. And, sadly, it is also hard to find the important people of the world about whom newspaper executives should know so much more - from competitors and collaborators to heads of state and multinational corporations. It looks like just another regional newspaper meeting to me.

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Wednesday, August 08, 2012

Polls Find Opposition to Stricter Gun Laws -

What I find so difficult about this is that any gun is capable of being misued. Sure, most illegal conduct is carried out by people we migth consider to be criminals. But the potential for a seemingly rational person to misues a gun, either intentionally or unintentionally, is huge. Is the pleasure and rare utility of a gun worth sacrificing all of the people who die, are maimed or injured from such weapons? For me, it most decisively is not.

Monday, August 06, 2012

Sunday, August 05, 2012

Medical charges

Why don't we all walk out of doctor offices with a copy of a statement that tells us what was done to us, for how much and who is going to pay for it? Why shouldn't we all be much better informed about how this works?

Friday, August 03, 2012

Harry Reid Has Long History of Romney Bashing -

I think we should ask Harry REID to help us explain what goes on when Mormons dress in white inside their private temples. And while he is working on this, he could also tell us the basis he has for the charges against ROMNEY over what taxes he may or may not have paid!

Occupation, Not Culture, Is Holding Palestinians Back -

There are so many things that are not a part of the Presidential debate. This is an extremely important example as are guns.

Newspaper Takes A Stand On Anonymous Commenters : NPR

I sure agree with those who say that you ought to have enough confidence in what you are saying to put your name to it. Period. The only footnote I might drop is that occasionally, there is an argument for anonymity, but that should be solvable through human intervention by the people running the site where the anonymous posting might go.

Frequently Asked Questions

I was going to ask this temple in Raleigh (I was surprised to see how few temples there are in the LDS network) if it was true that non-members could not visit. The FAQ pretty much say this, and the answers to these questions are really scary, at least to me. Changing into "white" inside? There is no contact button that I could find, nor any e-mail address.
We need to think long and hard whether we are ready for a person of this faith to be President of the United States. He is welcome to practice his religion but when we know so little about this part of his life, how can we be comfortable. I cannot.

ROMNEY in France

I would like to understand a lot better what Mitt ROMNEY said and did while a missionary in France. Surely, some of the people whom he approached in his missionary role must remember him? Or those who worked with him? I am not sure we have seen all that we ought to know about him during this period of his life. I'd really like to know how he tried to make the "sale" to French people to join him as Mormons.

Thursday, August 02, 2012

In Belarus, Teddy Bears Defy Leader, Lukashenko -

I wonder what they could drop out of the Kiev sky over the World Newspaper Congress? Missing participants?

Wednesday, August 01, 2012

Kazaky, a Boy Band, Is Everywhere -

I wonder if they will be performing at the World Newspaper Congress in Kiev?

World Newspaper Congress, Kiev

WAN-IFRA says it expects - one month from now:

"More than 1,000 newspaper publishers, chief editors and other senior newspaper executives from more than 100 countries are expected to attend the 64th World Newspaper Congress and 19th World Editors Forum, the global summit meetings of the world’s press, organised by the World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers (WAN-IFRA)."

The event website shows a total of about 400 participants, many of whom are speakers. Perhaps vast numbers of Ukrainian students (who, perhaps, are senior executives of their Twitter feeds) will be bused to the event to take it to 1,000? Or other notable Ukrainians?

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Aleksei Navalny Charged With Embezzlement -

Another wonderful subject for the Kiev World Newspaper Congress!

Musicians on Trial Over Crude Anti-Putin Song in Moscow Cathedral -

This would be a great topic to discuss at the World Newspaper Congress in Kiev, given relationships with Russia.

Sunday, July 29, 2012


I tried to order some shirts from Sears yesterday, went through the whole process of searching, selecting and then providing all the necessary billing information. My purchase was acknowledged; everything seemed in order. Then I got an e-mail saying it was canceled because the items were not in stock. Ok, they can run out of things, but the time to discover this is BEFORE they take all my credit card information and make me go through the process of providing billing information, etc. So I decided to look at the terms of use link  (they actually call it both Terms of Use and Terms of Service) at the bottom of the page on their site - If you read this carefully, Sears is trying to assert that whatever you do on their site with respect to a purchase or anything can, at most, result in a Sears liability of 100 USD! Would anyone agree to walk into a Sears store, buy something, have it go bad immediately, or something in the store cause other harm to the customer and expect that the Sears liability would be only $100, would they? Of course not! This is both preposterous and also any customer of Sears who thinks about using their website should know:

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Frustrating gas

I bought gas today in Carrboro. First problem was huge puddle of water into which roof was leaking in only open space. Waited. Pulled in another and car was blocking. As I sat, driver through some pink stuff out the window that hung on the hose. I got out and told ring-festooned young driver to go clean it up. That I would call the police. Then she told me her brother worked at the station and shouted some obscenities. That was CITGO. I drove off, with apparent brother making gestures of some sort. Drove to Exxon. Blocked on all lanes. Truck ahead of me not pumping gas but putting in small bottles of something followed by gas. When he finished, I pulled ahead to first spot only to be greeted by van backing up into same space. I gave in and backed up hoping to avoid the next to come in line. Gas options presented with most expensive gas on left instead of right and so that's what I would up buying, to my chagrin. When I tried to pull out, USPS truck pulled in and stopped in front of pump in only opening, not taking any gas - just delivering some mail. Finally, the van in front of me pulled out and I finished a frustrating and more expensive than necessary few minutes of gas.

Friday, July 27, 2012

Ukraine - Protester Accosts Patriarch Kirill I -

I wonder if she or another similar protester will find an opportunity during the World Newspaper Congress in September? What word or words might they sport in the same location?

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Pay by weight of garbage

Piece on Telematin reporting on Besancon, I think, where people must pay for garbage collection based on its weight. What a great idea! 7/3/12

Page not found « Ecofrugal Project : Dépenser moins | Vivre mieux | Agir maintenant

Ukraine Bill Proposes Prison for Positive Gay Depictions -

What a great topic for a session at this year's World Newspaper Congress in Kiev!

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Pardon for American Convicted of Insulting Thai King -

The next World Newspaper Congress (WAN-IFRA) will be in Bangkok next June. I wonder how tough they will be in objecting to such a law while they are there. If they care about freedom of expression, they will protest, but I suspect the bean counters will win out and they will say nothing to offend the king or the govermnet, hoping most likely to get them ot kick in some money to pay for the event. What a terrible position for the newspaper business to take!

Groupon Inc. News - Company Information - The New York Times

The chart of Groupon stock value since it went public is certainly headed in the direction of my opinion of the company.

So Much Data From Smart Meters, but Who Can Analyze It? -

Wednesday, July 04, 2012

Ukraine Parliament Adopts Russian-Language Bill -

So I wonder if this means that the World Newspaper Congress in Kiev in September will be in Russian as well? Perhaps WAN-IFRA was even out ahead of the Ukrainian governemnt on this one. What an uncomfortable place to be!

Monday, July 02, 2012

Malaise au grand quotidien anglophone de Hongkong#xtor=RSS-3208#xtor=RSS-3208#xtor=RSS-3208

Ukraine Unable to Kick Its Tattered Reputation -

The message surrounding the World Newspaper Congress in Kiev in September seems horribly blurred. It all seems to involve trying to seem "tough" for one constituency while not ticking off the "hosts". Some balances ought never to be struck.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Mitt Romney Billed $10,000 By Newport Beach, Calif. To Cover Cost Of Officer Overtime

What a complex question. If you create the expense by what you say and do, then perhaps the bill is in order. If you have a reasonable expectation that this will happen, or should have had such an expectation. On the other hand, if a town, anticipating trouble spends a bunch of money for something that turns out not to have been needed or that a reasonable person could have concluded likely would not be needd, then I think the local government pays the bill.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Friday, June 22, 2012

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Deceptive Advertising —

Health Care Law Loses Ad War -

I am not sure we have yet come to understand why basically a good idea seems to have hit shallow water, rocks, been beached, dragged back to the water, and left with a smoldering engine to move somewhere. There is something far more wrong thanI think we have realized.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Wasting Warren Buffett -

FRIEDMAN hit a home run with this one.

Friday, June 15, 2012

U.S. Will Give Immunity to Some Young Illegal Migrants -

No matter how hard I try, I cannot accept the idea that we should reward people who break the law.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

New Orleans Struggles With Latest Storm, Newspaper Layoffs -

I surely hope this "works" but it is so sad to realize that this could largely have been averted.

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Friday, May 25, 2012


Stories today point toward a difficult next few financial weeks, winding up on about 17 June. Russia and the UK are in recession, China and India are having big problems related to growth and output, the Euro Zone risks catastrophic failure, I am not sure about Brazil, but only Africa seems to have some good news. And, then, on that weekend in mid-June, both Egyptians and Greeks will go to the polls to make decisive choices on national leadership.
My prediction, such as it is, is that 18 June will prove to be a momentous day in the history of the world's economy and more.

The Euro Crisis This Time -

I continue to find little guidance from any leader here or there about what individuals should have as their goals in these challenging times. Spend? Save? Where? How? There has to be a better answer than "talk with your financial advisor"!

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Pizza Delicious Bought An Ad On Facebook. How'd They Do? : Planet Money : NPR

It is so easy to assume too much about trendy developments. GM's decision, noted in this piece, plus this confirms a lot of suspicions about the effectiveness of a lot of the advertising we find in the digital and non-digital world. I wonder if the medium is the message we are getting or if the nature of the message and how advertiser relates to customer is not really so much more important. New techology is allowing us to fine tune that relationship and it seems to me that this is where everyone's attention ought to be focused and let the Facebooks and Groupons, etc. fall where they may in support of that.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Persian Carpets, Durham - 15-501

I got some advice from them about care for a rug which proved to be wrong. Ok, we all make mistakes, and they will fix it. What is disappointing is that when I returned to get this done, I heard not a word of apology, and no acknowledgement that they had made a mistake in not advising me fully. It costs them the good will they otherwise would have generated by fixing the problem AND apologizing first!

Monday, May 14, 2012

Sunday, May 13, 2012

HP "print"

On, there are tow big problems. One is that there is no "print" button of any kind that I could find. The second problems is that when one goes to print what appears to be a short page, out comes 19 unformatted pages, largely illegible. What is the subject matter of those pages? Printers. Hmmmmm.

On the same general subject, I wonder if HP or someone else produces estimated operating costs in terms of ink for each printer - i.e., over 3 years, what is the expected cost/page of printing expected to be and, most important, how do all of the printers compare?

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Solar Installers Offer Homeowners Deals, Gaining Converts -

Why haven't solar panels been transformed into a new roof so that no one notices? Why do they remain so needlessly ugly?

Wednesday, May 02, 2012


I must say that in several purchases of Philips products, the ability to use their website to learn more or obtain product advice has been less than minimal. Very frustrating and very unexpected. They clearly have a chronic problem.

Tuesday, May 01, 2012 Matt Lauer, Ann Curry, Al Roker, Natalie Morales - TODAY show video, news, recipes, health, pets

Very smart to give a timeline of the day's show in order to return to something via the web.

At Angie’s List, the Reviews Are Real (So Is Angie) -

Why would I trust a review from someone whose real name is not attached to what they say?

Facebook Urges Members to Add Organ Donor Status -

I think there are huge opportunities to add all sorts of features to existing websites that help a lot of people, including the owners the websites. In fact, I don't think we have begun to explore what all those opporutnities might be.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

James Murdoch Testifies Before Judicial Panel -

Allowing newspapers to conduct themselves in unprofessional ways is dangerous for everyone; it's not a matter of nailing the MURDOCHs as much as it is making sure that no one else is allowing their organizations to be run so badly (in every sense).

Talking With Your Fingers -

So much yet remains to be known about how technology is affecting the way we communicate with one another.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Editor & Publisher ®

How ironic to have Google buying up a plant that used to make the raw material of newspapers!

Sunday, April 08, 2012

Mitt Romney and Benjamin Netanyahu Are Old Friends -

Given the extent of US deference to Israel today, even under President OBAMA, it is extremely troubling to imagine more of a locked-step march into the future between the US and Israel under ROMNEY.We need to free ourselves of the Israel first-and-only approach and learn, once again, the value of treating all countries equally. I can see no other way to align historical US ideals of non-discrimination with the way we treat other nations.

Angry Customers and Constructive Responses - Career Couch -

Thursday, April 05, 2012

Murdoch’s Sky News Channel Admits to E-Mail Hacking -

I want to think long and hard about this one, starting from the belief that news organizations are subject to the same laws as the rest of us. An "in the public interest" defense is worth considering, and may be the only option, but I am not at all sure that I believe that this defense should prevail.

Monday, April 02, 2012

Trayvon Martin Shooting Prompts a Review of Ideals -

This is one of those cases, like so many others, when we are so much better served by reserving judgment until we have as many of the facts as can be discerned. Only then can we react however strongly we choose but based on facts and not emotional reactions.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Is this where newspapers are headed?

I saw a headline today to the effect that the US and Israel agree that Iran is not developing a nuclear bomb.When I clicked, below is what I found. Well, maybe I know a little more about the headline, but I am far more confused about whether is the way a newspaper page is going to look in the future and horrified over the notion of the increased blending of US and Israeili interests as shown by the wrap-around banner. Israel is just another country and we should value the people there in precisely the same manner we value people in every other country. I'd much prefer to see our flag morphed into a composite of all of the flags in the region of which Israel is a part.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

The Power to Kill -

I agree.

BA flight to Nice

I am going to try to post some notes about various flights I have taken, asking quesitons, making observations, etc.
For this flight on 9 March, I was confused once again about a critical safety quesiton. The pictograms in the seat pockets are confusing about life rafts. Do most passengers understand that there is a difference between landing on land and on water? Was it clear when that plane went down in the Hudson River in New York? It seems each plane has the potential to be different and I do not think this is communicated well enough by airlines in general and certainly was not by BA for this flight. Were we to use the exits over the wings or not in the event of "water landing" as they say?
Note sameness of shops at LHR and answer to question about changing to earlier Nice flight. Shops all owned by chains - WHSmith, Dixon's - why not more competition from smaller?
Boardinfg pass from AA at RDU gives no infomration about terminal at LHR.
(Offered second cup of coffee on preceding AA flight to LHR. Warm croissant. Top Chef on the screen.)

Many Consumers Find It Hard to Step Away From Daily Deal Sites -

Monday, March 05, 2012

Obama: Israel should sign nuclear non-proliferation treaty - Haaretz Daily Newspaper | Israel News

With all of the criticism of Iran, does non-signatory status for Israel mean that there are no IAEA inspections? Why is Israel better than Iran? I certainly don't see any reason to treat one country differently than the other. What's the rationale for doing so?

Sunday, March 04, 2012

I.B.M. Takes ‘Smarter Cities’ Concept to Rio de Janeiro -

How many newspapers approach their local coverage in the same way?

Saturday, February 18, 2012

President Obama Speaks On Promoting American Manufacturing and Exports | The White House

What, exactly, does North Carolina now export to France, for example, and what could it export? Is there a matrix with details that shows exactly where in the world NC is sending products and services in the rest of the world?

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Vivian Maier's Muse -

I sure can identify with her interest in photographing newspapers!

Monday, February 06, 2012

Steal This Column -

This is extremely well-stated, and I concur in all that KELLER has said.

Sunday, February 05, 2012

Wednesday, February 01, 2012

"It Is Safe to Resume Ignoring the Prophets of Doom ... Right?" -

I find this piece to be extremely compelling. It should be a cause for concentration, not despair.

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

The Herald-Sun - No one hurt in Chapel Hill house fire

I wonder why it is that newspapers still think that their only job is to get a story out the door and on paper and then their job ends. In this case, others may be interested, as I am, in the "rest" of the story. What are the chances that we will see it here or anywhere? In other words, why are we not offered the option of leaving an e-mail address with a request to send an update on the story if the newspaper chooses to add something when the fire marshal completes the investigation?

Friday, January 20, 2012

My flights on American

We flew out to San Jose, CA on 18 January, via Chicago's O'Hare. The first flight from RDU was a surprise in that it turned out to be a Embraer regional jet. That meant that we came close to having to check our carry-on bags at planeside. Why did American not make this clear in the booking? The second flight was a more positive surprise in that we found we were on a large enough plane to be able to watch a movie. It was not announced, but turned out to be Moneyball - as promised in the American magazine. We were struck on both flights not by the absence of any food but by the absence of any snack whatsoever. Ah, times have changed.

Cash-strapped Ireland tests limits of austerity

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Web Site Will Shut Down to Protest Antipiracy Bills -

This is such a poorly informed discussion. Extremism on both sides is leading to an unfortunate missed opportunity to reaffirm a core principle - if you steal something from someone else, you are obliged to pay for it and to pay a penalty. The zealots in opposition to the legislation do not believe this principle, no matter what they say. And the people protecting legitimate copyright interests have failed to keep the discussion at the level it merits - if you steal, you pay. That's more important than all of the ethereal discussion about the opportunities for people to "use" the work of others to make a better world. And it is a more fundamental policy issues demanding fresh articulation.

Friday, January 06, 2012

Top 1% of Mobile Users Use Half of World’s Wireless Bandwidth -

This will look right when the top 1% pay the fully allocated costs of using their 50% which should be about 50% of the total charges recouped by the phone companies.