Picked up a link

A post on my Square Dots blog got linked from Richard Whitmire's "Why Boys Fail" blog on EdWeek.org.

I also have a new post up over there, on how far behind our kids are in math.

Warehouse 13

A year ago my brother posted:
I saw the tv show Warehouse 13 the other day. Seems clearly to be a reincarnation of the old Friday the 13th tv series. I liked that old show, so will try to check out a few more episodes of this new one.
I was catching up on old episodes (we finally entered the DVR world--nice) and came across one near the end of the season, "Vendetta". It's now clear that the makers of "Warehouse 13" are very well aware of "Friday the 13th: The Series" and did a small homage to it in the episode. For no real plot-related reason, two of the main characters stopped by a store front in the episode...the same store front (probably in Vancouver) that served as "Curious Goods" in Friday the 13th: The Series.

Of course, the show's name could be a tribute as well.

Stop electing lawyers!

In France, most politicians and bureaucrats graduated from the same university. It has become the one item that everyone who wants to get ahead needs on their resume. It's a narrow world where everyone basically has been taught to think alike.

How did we get to that point in the US? How has law school become our equivalent of France's École Normale?

Using the Real Clear Politics website and, usually, Wikipedia, I pulled up the names of all of the major candidates for Senate and looked at their educational background. Of the 71 Republicans, Democrats, and Charlie Christ running for the Senate, fully 34, or 48%, have law degrees.

In six races out of thirty-five (Alabama, Colorado, Illinois, New Hampshire, Ohio, and Oregon) (Alabama, Colorado, Illinois, New Hampshire, Ohio, and Oregon) voters will have no choice but to elect a lawyer. In only eight of 35 races (Arkansas, California, Maryland, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania Washington, and West Virginia) are there no lawyers on the ballot. Democrats have 20 lawyers out of 35 candidates, and Republican have 13 of 35 (Charlie Christ in Florida is also a lawyer.) Also, as far as I could tell, only one candidate has no college at all: Tom Sullivan in Idaho.

Lawyers actually make up about 1% of the country. How have we come to the point where far too many see law school as a qualifying factor?

To use Bill Buckley's formulation: I'd rather be governed by the first 50 names in the phone book.

Missed a milestone

The day before school started this year, both kids lost a tooth.

It wasn't until her orthodontist appointment yesterday that we realized Elizabeth had passed a milestone: That was her last baby tooth.

They grow up so fast!

(As for me, I'm still holding onto my last baby tooth...ack! My mind just did a rickroll! (Never gonna give you up...))

New post on Square Dots

I have a new post up at Sqaure Dots.

Merle Hazard

Here's Merle Hazard, country music economist, singing about Double Dippin'

Mostly I'm posting this because the backdrop is Bobbie's Dairy Dip, an ice cream stand a few blocks from my home. It's been there since 1951. Neat!

Also you can see shots of the Hoover Dam bypass. I mentioned it 3 years ago. Wow! Has it been that long?

Poll plummet

According to Rasmussen today (Sept 5), Obama has the worst approval rating so far, with nearly half, 47% of the country not just disapproving, but strongly disapproving.

Only 24% of the population strongly approves. I'd assume that he's still getting most blacks in that category. In addition, with some overlap, the percentage of workers in government is about 17%, and they are also probably strongly supportive. Trow in a couple more union workers, and I figure you can pretty much explain that 24% with just blacks, government employees, and unions.

Everyone else, he's lost.

It's in the bag

My bro has discussed the push to eliminate plastic grocery bags, and how it is based on completely bogus data--basically a study on marine deaths from loose fishing nets was morphed into a rallying cry against plastic bags.

Last night, in a late night session of the California legislature, a real shock. They voted not to impose a ban on the bags.

I'm grateful, because I recycle the bags by using them to dispose of smelly cooking waste.