Monthly Archives: June 2012

And, now, from our sponsors

If only I could actually drink the product.

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I want you to go to:

Connie and Mark have been the targets of our old pal Richard Warman and, in the instant case, Dr.Dawg,aka Ms. Mew and John Baglow.

They won summary judgement – namely a finding that Dawg did not present a case they needed to answer – but he appealed and, while the Court of Appeal agreed that there was, essentially, no case, they none the less decided that the case raised questions of public interest which demanded a full trial. And then the ninnies on the bench assessed costs against Connie and Mark.

Which means they need $14,000 to continue the fight against a meritless bit of lawfare.

If you have a few dollars please send them Connie and Mark’s way.

Hit this link:

(The funny part of this is that Dawg is well aware he has no case…he is following the well trodden path of Lucy and simply running up the meter. It is despicable but unsurprising.)

Missing the Boat

#RIMM sinks.

Which is too bad.

In the real world a little Canadian company came up with a brilliant way of communicating. (I hated the thing but it worked.) And then it sat at the top of the heap for, more or less, a decade.

Then Apple moved its cheese.

And, instead of crushing the iPhone Rim assumed that its none to interesting messaging system would continue. Hello, my email is gmail. Which needs a smartphone. Which left RIM out in the cold.

Like Nokia.

Stuff happens really fast. There is no room for legacy. People change their phones every 18 months. Snooze, loose.

We move on.

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Merkel Blinks…

On Thursday night, Italy and Spain plunged an EU summit into disarray by threatening to block “everything” unless Germany and other eurozone countries backed their demands for help.

Mario Monti, the Italian Prime Minister, celebrated the agreement, reached in the early hours of Friday, as a “very important deal for the future of the EU and the eurozone”.  the telegraph

Or did she?

Monti didn’t get everything he wanted, Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte told reporters. Italy “wanted direct bond buying by the aid funds in the secondary market,” he said. “That’s not going to happen. They wanted an interest-rate cap. That’s not going to happen either.” bloomberg

There are conditions. The Germans will see them met.

Much as I would like this endless crisis ended I fear the great and the good of Euroland have simply kicked the can another five yards.

Keeping the Euro is insane for Greece, Spain, Portugal and perhaps Italy and France as well. But the colleagues will persist.

Which kills the Greeks and the rest of the PIGGs…and worse, the rest of us.

Roberts Plays the Long Game

Note that as Roberts explains why these people can’t be regulated, he’s also explaining why the health insurance companies are doomed. (But, you may think, isn’t the mandate upheld under the taxing power? Again, what’s upheld is the tax imposed for not buying insurance, and that’s less expensive than buying insurance, and the money goes to the federal government, not to the insurance companies. Meanwhile — to make it crushingly clear — the insurance companies do have to sell insurance to people with pre-existing conditions. So these people who currently don’t buy insurance because it’s not worth it can start buying insurance as soon as it is worth it, and under the ACA, they can’t be charged more than the people who have been buying insurance all along.) ann althouse

I have not followed the Obamacare case terribly carefully but if Roberts has done what Althouse says he has done he has handed the Republicans a stick with which to beat the administration (health tax) and a hornets’ nest to the administration (moral hazard on steroids).

Basically, you pay the tax for not buying insurance right up until you get really sick and then you pay limited health care insurance premiums which don’t begin to cover the costs incurred by the insurer. Literally, the worst of both world

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Now, normally I am all about forgiving and forgetting…but in Richard Warman’s case I have to make an exception.

You owe it to yourself to read this rant. Puts the boots to Lucy and his enablers.

Plus The Doggrel Party has discovered what the Hate Sniffer General is up to now that he can’t beat up basement Nazis.

And Jesse Brown writing in Macleans celebrates the end of Richard’s Law.

Nick Clegg really is a Wanker

The Deputy Prime Minister will announce a series of last minute concessions to critics of his much-cherished proposals for a mainly-elected Second Chamber of Parliament when he publishes the Lords reform Bill today.

However, there was little indication that rebel Tories would be appeased, with four ministerial aides poised to quit the government in order to vote against the Bill.

Up to 100 Tory backbenchers have formed a group aimed at blocking the reforms and Ed Miliband announced that Labour would oppose the government’s plan to speed the Bill through Parliament. telegraph

With the Euro burning and the EU on the edge it there a more idiotic crusade than to make the House of Lords an elected assembly with proportional representation and 15 year terms…It would be hard to imagine anything less important to the fate of the United Kingdom.

But Nick comes through in the pinch.

Made me Laugh Again

Bruce McCall on how to actually stop traffic.

Made me Laugh

Nora Ephron

And, yes, her politics were silly…but she got Meg Ryan and how men and women actually work and could tell a story. That matters past death, her politics die with her.

Roger Simon gets it.

A Sad Tale

One of my rules, coming back to blogging, is to actually talk about stuff which I care about. No matter how trivial.

I collect books. Which means that I buy the puppies at garage sales and keep the good ones and sell the doubtful onwards. Basically I have a couple of thousand good books which have cost me nothing.

Now, to do that I have to have used bookstores who need stock.

Once in a while I clear the shelves of the buying mistakes I have made. Good books but not my cup of tea. I hop the buss with a couple of bags of books. Trade, sell, whatever.

I landed at my favorite used book dealer and, with a giant 50% off sign in his window I realized that this was a no sale environment.

Why? I’ll let Terry (not his real name) tell the story,

“Well the HST pretty much finished me. And I used to make money online but the postage rates got so high I had to eat them for my American customers. But mainly it is the Kindle.”

“Used to be that when a family went on vacation – which they sure are not doing thanks to the ferry fares, at least not here – they would come in and buy a bunch of novels and the kids would get some books. Now they upload them.”

“Terry” is not bitter. He loved the job and is now done. He’ll be fine.

The gradual passing of used bookstores, where the environment was about reading and about getting a deal is passing. The sheer tonnage of mysteries and romances – always outweighing books I might like to read – is entirely adaptable to the Kindle or IPad.

Which will still, sadly, mean the conversations and the easy sense of books as delightful will have passed. There is nothing delighful about asking the sales “lead” at Chapters for a book you might like. She, after all, started last week and read her last book at the end of her “Stucies” degree.

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