Category Archives: What’s the news?

How not to do voting theory

This WaPo op-ed (by Edward Foley and Eric Maskin) is so, so bad that I’m still upset about it two days later. They criticize Alaska’s instant runoff election system because it doesn’t meet the Condorcet criterion: Pelota won, even though … Continue reading

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I also wonder how many people have PET LOBSTERs.

So sayeth a crossword puzzle constructor. Which led me to: pet rock lobster roll tide pool noodle soup dumpling house pet …. (Presumably this sort of theme has been done before.)

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Deaths of trees

I don’t have anything to say here except to record some articles I’ve read at some point, about deaths of trees: both individuals (a white mulberry on the National Mall and a white oak in New Jersey) and entire species … Continue reading

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Medals per capita

So I made a joke to a friend about how, after Slovenia got their first medal, they were doing really well on a medals per capita basis.  And then, being me, I took this joke too far and actually started … Continue reading

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“Jackson, 1964” by Calvin Trillin

Trillin is wonderful and I would read pretty much anything he writes (though Tepper isn’t going out wasn’t my favorite). This collection (published in 2015) is of his reporting on race over 40 years, beginning in 1964. (There is another … Continue reading

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Chestnuts

As always, I adore any piece of tree-related reporting in the Times.  The latest is about the American chestnut.  I have read a bunch of tree books that talk about the destruction of the blight, but I thought this article … Continue reading

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No blondes allowed

This article about a 1969 episode in Potomac, MD, in which a school implemented anti-blonde apartheid during National Brotherhood Week,  is deeply fascinating. The blond students were forced to use separate restrooms, doors and drinking fountains, relegated to separate tables … Continue reading

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Bindu Ammini

Bindu Ammini is my new personal hero: KOCHI, India — One morning this month, Bindu Ammini stood at the base of a steep, forested trail in southern India and looked up: She was a three-mile hike away from making history. … Continue reading

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Juan Valdez

Condolences to all my Colombian friends as you mourn the death of a national hero.

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“Administrative leave”

So one of the things that has happened in the course of my lifetime is that now everyone carries cameras around with them all the time. And this has a bunch of not-necessarily-foreseen effects, some good and some not good. … Continue reading

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