Archive for Dyssynergy

Meanwhile in Kinshasa

Roberta X is still watching Mr. Robot, though not without issues:

I loathe the implied politics, the economics are risible, and the whole thing plays out as if Karl Marx and Noam Chomsky had done a screenplay for Atlas Shrugged — but then Orson Welles produced and directed it with a modern crew shooting and editing.

Once that’s said, you can tell there’s one of her legendary footnotes on the way, this one about the Democratic Republic of the Congo:

The DRC has been about as beat up by history as any other place on the planet, provided the other place has had very hard times. There are more French-speakers there than in France and over three-quarters of then are literate; the country is rich in natural resources from rubber trees to gold, diamonds and a host of other minerals and could generate enough power to transform the continent from a single hydroelectric project — a project that seems to keep getting stalled. Everyone from local slavers to King Leopold II of Belgium to their own government has abused the people and looted local sources of wealth, along with a succession of local wars continuing into this century; what could be one of the world’s wealthiest nations is instead a country with less than a thousand miles of well-paved highway. Of course, the show could be referring to the Republic of the Congo instead, which had a long history as a communist client state. But there’s a lot less there in the way of exploitable resources and none of it glows in the dark.

And they’re close by: Kinshasa (once Léopoldville), the capital of the DRC, is right across the Congo River from Brazzaville, the capital of the Republic Of. (For OKC Thunder fan reference: Serge (Air Congo) Ibaka hailed from Brazzaville. Interestingly, he plays for the Spanish national team.)

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Learning to conform

I noted last week that it’s really quite all right to be different. Then again, I am sixty-four years old. It’s harder to reach that conclusion if you’re fifty years younger than that:

One form of bullying — one form I experienced a lot as a kid — is for people to find something about you that is DIFFERENT, and to harp on that difference. And it gets to the point where even if you liked being different in that way at the outset, you come to hate it, because the fact that you don’t fit in, that this other person sees you as weird, is being shoved in your face day in and day out. Few adults are strong enough to stand up to that, and even fewer kids.

(I will present as an exhibit: how in 7th grade I forced myself to listen to “top 40 radio” even though I hated it, because I felt like I needed to know what songs and artists were popular, and I knew that the kids thought I was weird because I listened to WCLV instead, and that I liked classical music. Yeah, I did something I hated in the name of seeming more “normal.” Spoiler alert: it didn’t work.)

I had my own issues in seventh grade, one of which was still being nine years old at the beginning of the first semester. I did not take it well. And being so far chronologically offset from the rest of the class, I didn’t quite fit in with the Scarifyingly Heterosexual school activities, which led some to murmur that I might be happier with the boys. Not them, of course. It is a measure of how bad off I was socially that I didn’t realize what they were saying until several years later.

Plato probably didn’t actually say “Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle” but the statement is still a good and a true one. And it seems that as the world becomes harder and colder (or appears to have), more and more people are forgetting to be kind — or are deciding not to, in the interest of getting ahead/getting someone to notice them/throwing a punch before someone throws it at THEM … and, it just doesn’t HELP.

This latter paragraph is about fifty-five percent of Twitter, and about eighty-five percent of political Twitter.

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How dare you document

There are few governmental perks more cherished than not having to answer to Those People. A particularly egregious example:

Criminal charges have been dropped against a mother who sent her child to school with a recording device to document bullying, reports Cydney Henderson in USA Today.

Sarah Sims, 47, of Norfolk, Va., said she’d called and e-mailed school administrators to report her nine-year-old daughter was being bullied. They didn’t respond.

So she “placed a digital audio recorder in her daughter’s backpack in September in hopes of capturing audio from the fourth-grader’s classroom,” reports Henderson.

This got the response one expects from local authorities in this day and age:

Norfolk police charged Sims with a felony — intercepting wire, electronic or oral communications — and with a misdemeanor — contributing to the delinquency of a minor. She faced as much as five years in prison.

Charges were subsequently dropped, apparently because of Really Bad Optics. Reported the Commonwealth Attorney’s Office:

Our resulting review of the report and the law finds the evidence does support probable cause for the 2 charges against Ms. Sims; however, after reviewing the facts and circumstances specific to this case, this Office is exercising prosecutorial discretion to not pursue the prosecution of this case… the Court granted this Offices motion to dismiss the charges against Ms. Sims. This criminal case is now concluded and this Office has no further comment to provide.

And this is somehow heartening:

Sims says she plans to have her record expunged and is considering legal action against the city or school system.

Virginia, incidentally, is a one-party-consent state: “it [is] a crime to intercept or record any ‘wire, oral, or electronic communication’ unless one party to the conversation consents.” This suggests that the prosecution would have argued that a nine-year-old girl could not consent to the recording. Still bad optics.

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Unribbed for my annoyance

Near the eastern terminus of the Northwest Distressway, there sits a McDonald’s, and yesterday they had an electronic sign reading simply “McRib!”

I was three lanes away when I saw it, and decided I would proceed toward another location, near Ted’s on May. Now May at the afternoon rush is about as bad as the Distressway, squeezed into fewer lanes, so getting there was going to be half the fun.

No crowd yet — they have twin drive-in lanes, and there was no traffic in either — but the magic word was not in evidence. I decided to feign innocence: “Has the McRib arrived yet?” The fourteen-year-old at the window, or so he sounded, solemnly assured me that it had not.

But I was calm, I was cool, and when the young lady at the second window collected a $20 from me, I managed to fumble away almost the entirety of my $12ish change. I did not actually swear until I got back to the edge of the parking lot, and then I held it back: making the right turn required waiting for no oncoming traffic. (I am not insane enough to try to make a left turn at 5:10 pm.) I accepted this as the universe’s apology.

Update, 5:15 pm: McRib obtained, and at a slightly lower price than I expected.

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Now playing

Wait a minute. These guys aren’t playing at all, not one lousy bit:

We saw this film at a Regal Cinema. You now have to pick your seat when you buy your ticket, which I thought was kind of shitty. What if you don’t like the seat when you get in there? But I’m with my wife so no fussing allowed. The seats are new too, big and fancy. Big electric recliners with leather upholstery. I think changing to these chairs must have cut the seating capacity in half. Tickets are now $12.50, but we got a $3 discount for being old. The whole rigamarole of getting tickets and getting inside is annoying, as is the relentless advertising. We did get there 15 minutes early, but it used to be that they would just let you sit in silence, which was kind of nice. But you haven’t paid for that time, so we get to bombard you with an endless onslaught of useless information.

Seat selection definitely favors the regular crowd, I suspect.

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The next step in Media Hatred

Last week:

Walmart has pulled a T-shirt which encouraged the lynching of journalists.

The $18.99 T-shirt bearing the message “Rope. Tree. Journalist. SOME ASSEMBLY REQUIRED” was listed on Walmart.com through third-party seller Teespring.

Walmart removed it after a journalist advocacy group told the retailer it found the shirt threatening.

This week:

A co-owner of the Today’s News-Herald was poisoned with what could have been lethal doses of thallium and other chemicals, according to leading toxicology and medical experts.

After experiencing prolonged, unexplained illness with severe symptoms earlier this year, Joseph Soldwedel sought medical treatment and forensic laboratory testing. Soldwedel is president of Prescott Valley-based Western News & Info.

“The test findings are highly suggestive, but not confirmatory, of an intentional poisoning with an intent to kill,” said Dr. Ernest P. Chiodo, one of the nation’s leading experts in forensic toxicology who reviewed Soldwedel’s test results.

Environmental factors? Not likely:

Doctors concluded that Soldwedel, 65, takes no medications that contain these heavy metals or other toxins, and had no known environmental or occupational exposures to thallium. Water tests conducted at Soldwedel’s places of residence showed no trace of toxic chemicals.

Mr Soldwedel said “he has a good idea” about the identity of the poisoner, but is not ready to go public until law enforcement has a better handle on things. The perp, I suggest, should be hanged by a person wearing a T-shirt.

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But we’re allowed to suck

You must click here to agree with us:

Speaking of shady garbage, some yutz was on Y!A last week wanting some sort of public approval for using his multiplicity of Google accounts to post mass quantities of bad reviews of a firm that he said had wronged him. (The question seems to have been deleted.) I don’t think much of that practice either.

(Via Chris Lawrence.)

Update: ADT has seen the error of its ways.

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Schedules gone awry

American Airlines has a software package to help with the scary task of making sure enough pilots are available. Sometimes it even works:

Their computerized leave request system is supposed to deny leave if no one is available to take assigned flights during the time involved. But whoopsie, somehow the alarm didn’t trigger and now the airline is in scramble mode to find reserve pilots or entice vacationing pilots back by offering them 150% of their usual pay for any flights they return to handle.

Then again, it doesn’t require high-powered CPUs to make things not happen. Return with us now to the fall of 1963, when Capitol Records, which had right of first refusal for anything issued by its British parent EMI, decided that maybe they’d take this upcoming single by an English band called the Beatles. EMI had never offered them “Love Me Do,” and they passed on “Please Please Me,” “From Me to You” and “She Loves You.” But this one maybe had a little more zing; it might even make the Top 20. The pressing plant in Scranton, Pennsylvania was given its instructions: initial order of about twenty thousand 45s.

According to legend, a flight attendant for one of the two extant British airlines landed in an East Coast town — maybe Washington, D.C. — and played a record she’d bought in England for her boyfriend, a local DJ. He thought enough of it to put it on the air, and the program director be damned. The phones lit up. Acetates were cut and sent to sister stations in major markets. Their phones lit up. Word of this eventually got back to Capitol, who concluded that they might have screwed the pooch. “One million copies!” they commanded.

And they were ignored. The major record-pressing plants were unionized, and by now it was December, time to shut down for the holidays. Neither begging nor browbeating could get Scranton opened in time. This left one B: bucks. And not only Capitol’s plant, either; they wound up paying double, even triple overtime to rivals Columbia and RCA Victor, across the river in New Jersey. And they got their one million copies.

“I Want to Hold Your Hand,” its release date moved up from mid-January to the day after Christmas, wound up shipping three million copies.

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Wankers need pictures

Or so I would conclude from this story:

(Via Snipe.)

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Just don’t keep count

This is not, I believe, an unusual stance:

I once prided myself on being a “low maintenance” kind of woman. That is, until I decided to count my steps to get ready on an average morning (ready to go out, not just ready for my coffee and blog-browsing). It’s a surprising number.

The upside, such as it is, is that the resident male, even if he shares your bathroom, has no idea how many steps you go through, and won’t even bring up the subject unless you’re late for an evening out. (Keep in mind, guys always say you look better without makeup, even if they have never, ever seen you without makeup.)

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This is the day of the contracting man

If only they could go back, Jack, and do it again:

Steely Dan’s Donald Fagen is suing the estate of his late, longtime musical partner Walter Becker in an effort to maintain control of the group and its name, according to Rolling Stone and other media reports. At the center of the suit is a buy/sell agreement the part signed in 1972, the year the band formed, which stated that upon the death or departure of a Steely Dan bandmember, the group would purchase that member’s shares. By 1975 Steely Dan was effectively a duo, with Becker and Fagen accompanied by session musicians.

Fagen’s suit is apparently an effort to head off a move from Becker’s estate: He alleges that four days after Becker’s death from esophageal cancer on September 3, he received a letter that said: “We wanted to put you on notice that the Buy/Sell Agreement dated as of October 31, 1972 is of no force or effect.” The letter also reportedly demanded that Becker’s widow, Delia, be appointed a director or officer of the group, and that she was entitled to 50 percent ownership of Steely Dan.

“Fagen — acting on behalf of himself and on behalf of Steely Dan, as its sole remaining officer and director — hereby exercises the mandatory provision of the Buy/Sell Agreement requiring Steely Dan to purchase Becker’s shares,” the suit states. “This lawsuit is required for Steely Dan and Fagen to obtain a judicial determination that Becker’s shares must be sold to Steely Dan pursuant to the express terms of the Buy/Sell Agreement, so that Steely Dan and Fagen can go on as contemplated and provided by the Buy/Sell Agreement.”

Tristan Fabriani was not available for comment.

(Via Fark.)

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Speculators welcomed

Sometimes incoming answers at Yahoo! are a cinch to, well, answer. (“No, you don’t need a 12-year-old BMW”) is one I can use quite often. Others simply baffle me:

Yahoo Answers screenshot: I want to know what s going on in Bedico, Louisiana at 28273 hwy 22 right now

I wanted to tell her “Your husband is evaluating a babysitter,” but that goes a hair beyond my cruelty threshold.

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Box whatever

My neighborhood dates to right after World War II, and mail, for now, is delivered to our front doors. (In my case, it’s delivered to the garage door, which saves the carrier a few steps, and the basket on the inside is not accessible from the outside.) We look down our noses at the cluster boxes inflicted on newer neighborhoods. You don’t want to know what we’d think of this:

Jackson, Wyoming is one of those rare places in the United States with no home delivery. Davidson, NC and Carmel-by-the-Sea, CA are two other places that come to mind where USPS does not deliver mail to home residences. Despite the best efforts of Postmaster General John Wanamaker, who served from 1889 to 1893, to spearhead RFD (Rural Free Delivery) ensuring even bumpkins in the middle of nowhere could get their mail, there still exist a few of these smaller communities where no mailman treads even today.

The Canadians are getting rid of door-to-door delivery, but they’ll still come to somewhere on your block, more or less, with your mail. Forget that in Jackson.

McG notes for record:

Maybe back in the olden days before the Harveywood elite discovered Jackson Hole, it was okay to use the post office for “community building,” but congestion on the street and in the lobby now get in the way of the postal employees doing their jobs efficiently — which is what those of us in the rest of the country want more than anything from our post offices.

“Harveywood”? That’s gonna leave a mark.

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At too safe a distance

News Item: A strategically planned implosion brought down the Georgia Dome Monday morning at 7:30. More than 4,000 pounds of explosives and six miles of cables and wiring took down the 71,000-seat stadium in just 12 seconds, sending a plume of dust into the sky.

The Weather Channel sent a team to cover the demolition as it happened. The result was, shall we say, not predictable:

“Gimme a hurricane every time,” Jim Cantore might have muttered.

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A certain heaviness

You can’t really tell from this photo:

Judge Jeanine in blue shoes

And no information is available for the left, but apparently that right foot is solid lead:

Fox News host and TV judge Jeanine Pirro is heading to court herself after being ticketed for excessive speeding Sunday in upstate New York.

State Police say Pirro was clocked driving 119 mph in a 65 mph zone when she was stopped by a trooper at about 1:15 p.m. Sunday afternoon in the Town of Nichols in Tioga County.

A State Police spokesman said the only charge Pirro was hit with was speeding.

Forty over in New York State can get you 11 points, enough for a license suspension. And she sounds almost like she’s expecting it:

“I had been driving for hours to visit my ailing 89-year-old mom and didn’t realize how fast I was driving. I believe in the rule of law and I will pay the consequences,” Pirro said in a statement through Fox News Channel.

I just want to know what she’s driving in which you can’t tell you’re going a hundred nineteen.

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A good long run

A century and a quarter, and then some, but those days are gone:

In 2007 President George W. Bush signed the Energy Independence and Security Act, which, among other things, was intended “to move the United States toward greater energy independence and security, to increase the production of clean renewable fuels, to protect consumers, to increase the efficiency of products, buildings, and vehicles.” Americans have been blaming President Obama ever since for taking away their incandescent light bulbs.

Now, almost exactly ten years later, John Flannery, the new head of General Electric, has announced that they are out of the bulb business. Many are outraged, blaming Obama and the EPA, writing comments like “another American industry lost, gone to China. The EPA demanded the change from filament to fluorescent to save energy. Now LEDs, invented here, now made in China.”

This is not, incidentally, the first “innovation” to occur on W’s watch for which Obama got the blame: remember when all the car companies in Detroit went down the porcelain facility?

(Via Fark.)

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Hitherto unimagined

Said I about a year ago:

“Hitherto-unimagined” references an old prediction of mine to the effect that the [Consumer Reports] Buying Guide would be Web-only after 2015. Said prediction was, um, wrong.

The following has not changed:

Still “2,000+” rated products, and still 224 pages. The magazine’s new Colored Dots, however, don’t work so well in black and white.

I was expecting worse; I’m guessing the Buying Guide went to press before they killed off Consumerist, their occasionally snarky Web site acquired from Gawker (!) in 2008.

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Headed for 1 terabolívar

No time to play. We have to go to the bank:

I’m betting President Maduro has at least two — which is, after all, the limit.

(Via @dicentra33.)

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Under the wheels of commerce

Never been to China myself, but this seems pretty believable:

I have not seen much on this trip to the far East. Hotel, car, plant, car, hotel. Rinse and repeat.

I have eaten some good food and some not-so-good. Chicken feet, not so good. Beef tongue, tolerable. I still cannot mange chopsticks. My hosts have given up on me in that regard.

How about keeping up with the Internet?

I forgot Google is verboten in Red China. So is my personal gmail account. I have gone through leaps and bounds to post this quick note since Blogger is Google too. I am sneaking in through my company’s VPN. I expect the authorities to burst into my hotel room any moment and drag me off to be squashed by a tank in Tiananmen Square.

Hmmm. Better check for a later post.

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What is this “breed” of which you speak?

The Wake County [NC} SPCA has changed its presentation just a hair:

You’ve heard the saying “don’t judge a book by its cover.” Now we present “don’t judge a dog by its breed.” The SPCA of Wake County is no longer listing dogs by their presumed breed with the hope that adopters will give each dog a chance to win you over for who they are, not who they look like they’ll be.

The SPCA removed breed listings to be better able to match families with a new, furry family member. When someone comes in to adopt a dog, we want them to see the dog standing in front of them, not the dog they think they will get based on the breeds listed on an information sheet.

This strikes me as eminently sensible, and this is why:

It is important to keep in mind that in recent decades, many breeders have bred more for looks than behavior. Because of this, looking like a certain breed is no longer a reliable way to predict a dog’s behavior. Not all Labradors love water. Not all golden retrievers love children. Not all hounds will bay and howl. There are as many breed typecasts as there are breeds. Sometimes they’re accurate, but more often they’re not. We don’t want families to skip the dog that could be just the right fit or choose the dog that could be all wrong because a piece of paper identified the dog as a particular breed.

And some dogs defy classification, simply because their bloodlines veer into the Heinz 57 zone. It’s probably not all that likely that a chihuahua and a Neapolitan mastiff (think Fiat 500 x Ford F-250 Super Duty) will mate, but if they did, you’d have, well, a dog. Maybe your dog, if the chemistry is right.

(From The News and Observer via Fark.)

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Suddenly it’s 1967

This happened last year, but I can still hear instructions like these from half a century ago:

Forty of the female students in Henderson High School in Auckland, New Zealand were called into an assembly to discuss the hemlines on the skirts of their uniforms.

According to students, their Deputy principal Cherith Telford reportedly told them to lower the hemline and make their skirts longer.

This was reportedly to “keep our girls safe, stop boys from getting ideas and create a good work environment for male staff.”

“Henderson High School has rules relating to the wearing of school uniforms. These rules are not new and all families are made aware of them when they enroll. They include a stipulation that the hemline of female students’ skirts must be on the knee, no higher. The uniform is practical for school wear and these rules are regularly enforced to ensure that all students can focus on their learning and feel comfortable in the school environment. As principal, I make no apology for insisting on high standards throughout the school and I have high expectations. That includes wearing the uniform according to the agreed rules.”

I can assure you, boys of a certain age are going to be getting ideas no matter what you do. Perhaps this is why they’re placing all responsibility on the girls.

And Jim Sterling asks: “At what point, when protecting your male staff from the seduction of children’s knees, do you think you might have hired the wrong staff?”

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New World odors

The Secret Masters of the Universe, if they actually do exist, really stink at their jobs:

If the Hidden Rulers Of Everything were even a little bit on the ball, there’d be intercontinental ballistic passenger rockets, robot valets and a luxury hotel on the Moon — with, of course, a totally secret members-only club where the HROE could hang out, paneled in Lunar diamonds and the scalps of their enemies. For their convenience, there’d be air-droppable, solar-powered cellular telephone hubs (tapped, of course, by the HROE) and scalable, air-droppable power plants in both atomic and solar, with a sideline in wind and ocean-thermal versions, all built under patents the HROE control, in HROE-owned factories. They’d desalinate seawater and (being greedy plutocrats) sell it to the thirsty at prices that’d keep them alive to come back to buy more, day after day after day.

But they don’t. We have none of these things — and neither do they. If there are secret rulers of the world, they’re idiots.

Ernst Stavro Blofeld was not available for comment.

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We’re not saying that it’s aliens

But — aw, hell, you know how this goes:

This planet has issues

(With thanks to Francis W. Porretto.)

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Our wish is your command

Fortunately, no one around here has asked me to do anything like this:

I did paint the mailbox post to the approved neighborhood color. It has been the wrong color for at least the four years we have lived here. I got a note from the HOA last spring and ignored it. My neighbor said he had some paint left over if I wanted it. So making things right cost me about 15 minutes of my time and the water to wash out the brush. I am now right with the the autocrats.

Of course, they’ll now be looking around for something else to complain about. This is their singular goal in life: to push around the people they just barely consider neighbors.

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In case you couldn’t find the tablet

Just follow the otherwise-empty arrow:

A box of two? Wow.

Wikipedia semi-helpfully points out that “[i]n the United States, it is available only by medical prescription (and is frequently limited, without prior authorization, to a quantity of nine in a 30-day period).” A quantity of nine, per Drugs.com, runs $92.52. To someone with a migraine, a condition for which this drug is indicated, ten bucks and change for a single tab is probably worth it. Maybe the two-tab version is intended to get you through a particularly bad weekend.

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Almost exactly like this, in fact

The title Warren Meyer pasted onto this was “Keynesian Economic Stimulation, White Collar Edition,” and he got it exactly right.

This runs six megabytes, so I’ve stashed it below the fold for the benefit of, well, those who don’t want to sit there and download six megabytes.

Read the rest of this entry »

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Advance to the rear

These days, there’s a “serious disconnect” between the papers and their Web sites:

This column appeared in The Oregonian yesterday (we now get the paper on Sunday, Wednesday and Friday). This morning I go looking for this story online so I can give you the link and Tulsa World is the first one that pops up. I don’t bother looking in The Oregonian because there seems to be a serious disconnect between what goes in the paper version and the online version.

What caught me here was the three-day home-delivery schedule. It’s not that weird — I used to subscribe to the Oklahoman precisely on those days — but apparently the best you can do in Portlandia is four days:

The Oregonian is home-delivered throughout Multnomah, Washington, Clackamas, and Yamhill counties in Oregon and Clark County, Washington four days a week (Wednesday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday); it is also home-delivered in parts of Marion and Columbia counties.

This is common among papers owned by Advance Publications. The same deal is offered by The Plain Dealer (Cleveland). The Birmingham News and the Times-Picayune (New Orleans) actually cut back to three-days-a-week publication, though the Louisiana paper returned to a daily schedule after The Advocate, the Baton Rouge daily, established a New Orleans beachhead.

And there’s one further departure from The Oregonian’s Good Old Days: apparently it’s been shrunk to tabloid size.

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Vaya con queso

Just don’t expect to take a lot of it when you go.

Venezuela, this past week:

(Historical numbers.)

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Only steal from the best

Gee, this meal tastes familiar:

A Long Beach restaurant is under fire after customers found out the restaurant was re-serving Popeyes Louisiana Chicken.

For the last four years, Kimberly Sanchez has been serving up breakfast and lunch at her restaurant, Sweet Dixie Kitchen.

And some people thought it was, well, her lunch:

The restaurant’s troubles started after a customer allegedly saw Sweet Dixie employees carrying Popeyes boxes into the kitchen. The customer then wrote a Yelp review relaying his dissatisfaction with having to pay a premium for fast food fried chicken.

A Sweet Dixie employee confirmed they source the fast food chain for their chicken and waffles, which sells for about $15. You can buy chicken at Popeyes for much less without the fixings, Sanchez adds, but she’s not apologizing.

“My kitchen is not set up for frying. We’re an old building. I don’t actually have a proper kitchen back there,” she said to ABC7. “I love Popeyes chicken. I love it. I think it’s the best chicken out there.”

Yelp, for its part, is reacting reactively with an Active Cleanup Alert:

This business recently made waves in the news, which often means that people come to this page to post their views on the news.

While we don’t take a stand one way or the other when it comes to these news events, we do work to remove both positive and negative posts that appear to be motivated more by the news coverage itself than the reviewer’s personal consumer experience with the business.

Bless you, Yelp.

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Would you believe Not Smart?

One expects better from French intelligence:

A French intelligence agent sent a text message by mistake to the mobile phone of a jihadist, inadvertently warning him that he was under surveillance and undermining an investigation, it emerged on Friday.

The target of the probe, described as an “Islamist preacher” based in the Paris area, immediately understood that his phone was being tapped and his movements monitored.

He called the agent to complain and warned his contacts that they were under surveillance. As a result, separate investigations by two different intelligence services came to nothing, M6 television reported.

In harsher times, the agent would next be dispatched to go pound sand in Algeria.

(Via Bayou Renaissance Man.)

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