Linky Friday #39

Will Truman

Will Truman is the Editor-in-Chief of Ordinary Times. He is also on Twitter.

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30 Responses

  1. Mike Schilling says:

    V2: Heh. How did they miss the “While, in front of us, this boring guy describes his plans” joke?Report

  2. Chris says:

    En2: I owned most of those GI Joe. They were awesome. The 80s rocked!

    Ed2: My son’s high school starts at 9, more than an hour later than his middle school. I think it’s helped him a great deal, because he gets more sleep and isn’t rushed in the morning, so he eats a better breakfast and actually gets to ease into his day a bit.Report

    • NewDealer in reply to Chris says:

      My high school started at 8. So I remember getting up at 6 and showering when it was still dark during the winter months. Of course now I get up at 6 or so and walk to the gym in the dark. I dislike evening workouts.Report

  3. Vikram Bath says:

    T1: For my part, I give myself *full* credit, thankyouverymuch. In fact, I was more right than I had any business being. I said there will not be a cheap iPhone, and indeed there is not.Report

  4. Michael Cain says:

    S3: Yeah, if geology were the only consideration, and I wanted to retain the option of accessing the spent fuel again at some point in the future (hey, someone may build fast-neutron reactors in the future and want to burn the stuff), the obvious candidate sites are in the Great Basin. Pick one of the smallest and most isolated endorheic basins, buy out all of the private land owners, and turn the whole thing into a military reservation. Even if stuff leaks into the groundwater, that’s a contained problem absent changes on the scale of the recreation of Lake Lahontan.

    OTOH, I think we’ve reached the point where politically, any Great Basin site is going to look bad. The sponsor of the amendment that limited consideration of a disposal site to Yucca Mountain, when asked what had happened in the conference committee meeting where it was adopted (attached to a budget reconciliation bill so there wouldn’t be any floor debate), answered, “We screwed Nevada.” None of the Great Basin states want a disposal site. The Western Interconnect only has six commercial reactors, so the vast majority of the waste stored at the site would be shipped a thousand or more miles from Eastern reactors.

    The current Supreme Court seems more inclined these days to say that there are things the federal government can’t force individual states to do. I would not be surprised if, should matters go that far, this Court ruled that forcing a state to host a waste storage site (even if on federally owned land) for other states’ waste is one of those things.Report

  5. NewDealer says:

    Ed1: I don’t think the being against school-choice is a threat to white, progressiveness as currently championed by the libertarian conservative set. NYC does have school choice of a sort. A parent can ask/request that their kid be sent to a public school in the NYC system (absent the ones with a test). If that school has an open spot, the kid can go. There are really good public elementary and middle schools in NYC. The problem is that they are random and scattershot. I used to live in a neighborhood in Brooklyn called Boreum Hill/Carroll Gardens. This was the heart of gentrified Brooklyn, filled with professional families who moved to afford row houses and were outpriced from Manhattan. When I was looking for apartments, the real estate agent told me which apartments were zoned for the good school district. The bad school district and good school district were within walking distance from each other. The good elementary school had a very diverse student body and you would see bougie-Brooklyn parents taking their kids to or from school everyday. The middle and high schools in my neighborhood were overwhelmingly minority students because they were not considered good.

    The problem with school choice is that it requires kids to travel very long distances to get to school. Bronx Science is one of the good high schools. It is not uncommon for kids to make a very long trek from Queens to Bronx science or that everyone is going to ask to be sent to certain schools and then it becomes arbitrary and capricious as to who gets in. Having standards that ensure every neighborhood has good to excellent public schools is more equal and more liberating. The idea behind school choice is that it says “X percentage of schools will always be below average to downright horrible.”

    V2: That was cute

    S4: Count me as someone who does not see this as a problem. Despite cries to the contrary, I don’t think SF and NYC and LA and other areas are going to have trouble attracting rich people. They might have trouble attracting a certain kind of rich person who will come here on holiday anyway.Report

    • Michael Cain in reply to NewDealer says:

      The site links on to the mildly interesting “How Money Walks” graphic. With the exception of California, it looks an awful lot like the same internal migration pattern — north-to-south, east-to-west — that’s been going on for decades.Report

      • Yeah, that thought had crossed my mind. If anything, I’d actually expect the wealthy to be less effected, in the overall. I mean, they might be paying more taxes, but they have more money to spend on living exactly where they want to. When I think of someone moving from California to Texas, I think of someone in the middle class or UMC who are really struggling to afford the COL out there when it comes to raising a family. (Which itself being the product of real estate costs and suchlike more than taxes.)Report

      • NewDealer in reply to Michael Cain says:

        I admit that my bias towards ideal living (if keeping in North America) is pretty much either D.C. to Toronto. or San Francisco to Vancouver. Maybe Denver and Chicago as well.

        I love major-world class cities, Autumn, the beach, the woods and generally hate hot dry desert air. One of the many reasons that Burning Man does not appeal to me is that it is in the middle of the desert and this is a topography I wish to spend as little time in as possible. I love what big cities have to offer like theatre, museums (the best ones seem to be in the Northeast and Northwest), and musical venues for jazz, classical, and indie rock. Autumn to early winter is my favorite time of year, etc.

        So I doubt taxes and costs of living would get me to move to the Southeast or Southwest. Considering a strong part of me still wants to move back East to NYC, I am a strong exception to the general rules.

        Plus I am used to people wanting to move to NYC and SF and largely for social and culture reasons over economic reasons. I know people who moved back to the burbs once they had kids in the NYC and SF areas but no one who was willing to do a wholesale abandonment of either area.Report

      • NewDealer in reply to Michael Cain says:


        How much does this also account for politics and where people are moving from?

        I can’t imagine people moving from ultra-liberal Bay Area or other Democratic heavy areas moving to Texas and being happy. People who get priced out of SF tend to move to the more expansive East Bay and to places like Oakland, Rockridge (still part of Oakland I believe), and Walnut Creek. Or they move up north to Sonoma, Napa, and parts of Marin that are more affordable.

        Maybe this means I just know a lot of big city snobs but my guess is that people who move from California to Texas might also not be as happy with general blue-turning trend of CA. Burt Likko has laid out pretty convincing essays on the absolute disarray of the Republican Party in California.

        These migration narratives often seem very simplistic. I’m sure economics does play a part but I think that socio-poltiics and culture are also equally a part if not a strong part. The Big Sort is still at play.Report

      • Cascadian in reply to Michael Cain says:

        @newdealer “I can’t imagine people moving from ultra-liberal Bay Area or other Democratic heavy areas moving to Texas and being happy.”

        You know there’s Austin, right? Just joking. There isn’t enough tea in china to get me to move to Texas. Then again since I’ve moved to Canada it could be argued by the fringe that I’ve ceased to act in my own interest.Report

      • Chris in reply to Michael Cain says:

        I can’t imagine people moving from ultra-liberal Bay Area or other Democratic heavy areas moving to Texas and being happy.

        Perhaps because I’ve been a leftist in the South my whole life, I find this mindset incomprehensible. Politics just don’t affect my life on a level that would influence my moving all that much. I suppose if I had a daughter things would be different, as conservative states really are worse for women, particularly young women, but for just me, I’m not even sure it would be a consideration if it came down to two places that I found equal on every other relevant dimension.

        Well, now that I think about it, my girlfriend and I have been talking about getting the hell out of Texas in a couple years when that becomes feasible (have I mentioned that I really don’t like Texas? and it’s not about the politics), and while Virginia seems like a very good compromise state (it’s in the South, which I prefer, and it’s on the East Coast, which she prefers), the politics there give her pause. I think that’s primarily because she’s a woman, and Virginia’s been pretty shitty on women’s issues of late (sorry W1). I’d defer to her on that one, so I suppose that if it came down to Virginia or some other place we liked equally well (I keep suggesting South Carolina, but politically, that’s a step backward from Virginia even; plus, she worries about racism there), we’d probably pick the other place.

        Now that I think about it, when it comes time to choose, I’m going to keep demanding that we live on the Mediterranean. Screw American politics.Report

      • NewDealer in reply to Michael Cain says:


        At the risk of being a bit mean, you are still a heterosexual male (and I believe you are white based on past-writings but will not speculate on this part). If you were a gay kid from a rural area, the big city is going to be very alluring especially a place like the Bay Area. I know a lot of people in the Bay Area who are gay and otherwise non-comforimists who grew up in super-conservative areas, they got a ticket out at 18 and never looked back.

        BlaiseP said it here as well. Big Cities allow for true rugged individualism because the anonymous atmosphere of a big city allows a home for misfits.Report

      • ND, this may surprise you, but southern states have minorities and gay people. That’s not to suggest that minorities and gay people should move there or anything like that, but a fair number do. I have a transsexual friend who moved to Fort Worth, which is the conservative big city.

        While many would never consider moving to red states for precisely the reasons you refer to, a lot of people do.

        How do you think Colorado became blue? Or Harris County? Or Virginia? Whether blue staters move to red states in large numbers isn’t even a question. It’s how red states become purple or blue.Report

      • Mr. Blue in reply to Michael Cain says:

        Or Harris County?

        Between Houston and San Francisco, one of these cities is the largest in the country to have an openly homosexual major. The other one never has, has it?

        Not that it matters. Parker is sufficiently pro-business that I don’t care who she decides to be sexually active with. Well, as long as it’s an adult. None of that Portland funny business.Report

      • NewDealer in reply to Michael Cain says:


        Yes I know that the South has minorities and gay people. Colorado already had a city in terms of Denver that people could move to.

        These sorts of debates always seem to become ideological or regional pissing matches.Report

      • Chris in reply to Michael Cain says:

        ND, sorry, I forgot that you were gay. I suppose I can see that. Like I said, my girlfriend, who is neither male nor white, worries about parts of the South for similar reasons.Report

      • NewDealer in reply to Michael Cain says:


        I’m not gay. I never said that I was. There is a difference between having gay friends and knowing gay people and being gay. Just because I know people who fit the narrative of getting out of dodge does not make it my own.Report

      • Colorado already had a city in terms of Denver that people could move to.

        And Texas doesn’t? Texas, Arizona, Florida… all of the states we’re talking about have cities. That’s part of the point. Someone who is frustrated with the cost of living in California and isn’t particularly married to the area or state can relocate because there are other places that also have urban amenities*. So I’m not sure where your resistance to the notion that people have reasons other than The Big Sort to relocate to a cheaper part of the country is coming from.

        * – Yes, yes, the amenities are often not as good. And there are other things that these places do lack. Which makes it totally cool that you’re happy in SF and have no interest in most cities. You just seem oddly skeptical or confused, though, that things like “being able to afford a house” and such would be higher on the priority list of people outside the white-male-straight-conservative axis.Report

      • Chris in reply to Michael Cain says:

        ND, that would explain why I forgot: you never said you were.

        Austin, at one time, had the second largest gay population, relative to its overall size, in the country.

        Nashville and Atlanta have thriving LGBT communities as well.Report

      • I’ve probably said this before, but my wife is baffled by my general urban preference because I don’t have a strong interest in a lot of urban things. Though I’m a straight-white-male, I’m not what one would call normal. The bigger the city, the more likely it is that I will find oddballs who are oddballs in ways that are compatible with my oddballery.

        That’s sort of how Salt Lake City became what it is. People from all over Utah and elsewhere congregated there in search for people different like them (in Utah, of course, that has a specific meaning). And so now it’s a liberal city with a thriving gay population. And rather than being ironic, it’s entirely logical.Report

      • Chris in reply to Michael Cain says:

        I grew up in a small town; in what could reasonably be called the country, in fact. I am torn between a love of the country and a hate for much of what comes with cities (the traffic, the smells, the noises, the light pollution, etc.) on the one hand, and a love of culture on the other. Ideally, I’d live in a small town just outside of a major city. Somewhere other than Texas.Report

      • I can’t imagine people moving from ultra-liberal Bay Area or other Democratic heavy areas moving to Texas and being happy.

        And yet people make those moves. And in the other direction as well; while the net migration between the two states may be from California to Texas, large numbers of Texans also move to California each year (by eye, the principle determinant for how many people migrate out of a state each year seems to be simply the state’s population). The available county-by-county estimates all suggest that the large majority of both gross and net migration flows are between the major urban areas: the counties around LA/San Diego and the Bay Area in California; counties around DFW, Houston, San Antonio, and Austin in Texas. Nor is that phenomenon Texas-specific. The exchange between California and Colorado is very largely between those same California areas and the Colorado Front Range counties.Report

      • roger in reply to Michael Cain says:

        I grew up in the Bay Area and then moved with a mixed racial family to Mississippi. I was in no way shape or form happy. I would take my family to a restaurant and everyone in the restaurant would turn and look at us, and the kids would point.

        After that we eventually moved to Texas. Much better. Loved the people. Lots of diversity. Not exactly California…but better government all things considered.Report

      • krogerfoot in reply to Michael Cain says:

        “I can’t imagine people moving from ultra-liberal Bay Area or other Democratic heavy areas moving to Texas and being happy.”

        It’s been some years since I’ve lived in Texas, but in 10th grade when I moved to Houston from extremely rural East Texas, I was the only kid I knew of who was even from Texas. Everyone seemed to be from Palo Alto, Massachusetts, Saudi Arabia, what have you.

        I get annoyed at friends and relatives who think the appropriate rejoinder to “I live in [major city]” is to loudly declare that they’ve never been and have no interest in going. How is it any less provincial to say you’re mystified why anyone would want to move to Texas?Report

    • Brandon Berg in reply to NewDealer says:

      The problem with school choice is that it requires kids to travel very long distances to get to school.

      You seem to be taking a static view of it. These are the good schools, and these are the bad schools, and that’s just the way it is and ever will be. But the whole point of school choice is to improve schools by subjecting them to competitive pressure. If it doesn’t do that, it’s pointless. The idea is to put more kids into good schools, not to put different kids into a fixed number of good schools.

      Maybe you don’t think it will work that way. I’m not entirely sure it will myself, since I suspect that the measured quality of a school is primarily a function of the quality of its students. But that’s the argument you have to make.

      Having standards that ensure every neighborhood has good to excellent public schools is more equal and more liberating.

      So how’s that working out?

      The idea behind school choice is that it says “X percentage of schools will always be below average to downright horrible.”

      Yeah, you really ought to stop telling people what they think. As I said above, that’s exactly the opposite of what the idea is. Well, it’s a tautology that 50% will always be below the median. But not necessarily bad in any absolute sense.Report

  6. Cascadian says:

    Is ed1 supposed to link to low income housing?Report

  7. Cascadian says:

    And a link from my favorite interloper advises: “For his own good, and the good of all his Church, the Pope needs to let his pen rest for a few days.” Now that’s a good Catholic.

  8. KatherineMW says:

    Neat, the guy (Saideman) writing about ethnic conflict metrics is a prof from my International Relations program!

    On the Canadian immigration article, I did not know that Canada accepted more immigrants per capita than other G8 nations – although I expect having 1/10th the population of the US helps in that regard. We’ve got relatively few people and a lot of space, unlike the rest of the G8. (Although given Japan in particular’s aging-population issues, it would benefit a lot from cultivating greater acceptance of immigrants.)

    I don’t like the Harper government’s changes – I’d like to see Canada become more inclusive towards immigrants, not more restrictive, and devote more attention to helping them adapt to life in Canada (good English- and French-language training; greater recognition of foreign credentials, an issue where our problems lead to foreign professionals working as taxi drivers and the like).Report

  9. Kazzy says:


    That was a really fascinating article. I have never fully versed myself on the school choice matter, but what I did know always led me to a “Yes in theory, Meh in practice” perspective. Often for reasons similar to what the writer speaks of. Good find.Report