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For the Checkpoint Lover in Every Child

Check out the Security Check-in toy set from Playmobil. Here’s the description: Every single smuggler is caught at the security check-in. With a modern X-ray machine every item not allowed on board is detected. At the same time, the passengers have to pass the passenger check-in under the watchful eyes of the security staff. Only […]

“It’s unkind, it’s disrespectful.”

I don’t know much about former Republican House Majority Leader Dick Armey, but I have a feeling we wouldn’t see eye-to-eye about too many things. Nevertheless, Reason TV has a wonderful excerpt from a recent speech of his that comes very close to capturing how I feel about the immigration issue.

RAV4 Blogging – 10 Days Behind the Wheel

We’ve had the new Toyota RAV4 for about 10 days, and I have a few observations: There’s a little digital display in the middle of the dashboard with some numbers on it, but when I first saw it I couldn’t figure out where the odometer was. After a moment, I realized that the odometer must be […]

The Difference Between a Website and Its Name

I’ve been reading about the Wikileaks issue on some legal blawgs, and corresponding with Scott Greenfield about it, and I think there’s a bit of confusion over a technical issue. I don’t think anyone within Judge White’s jurisdiction is disobeying his order. I’m going to have to delve into some history here, but I think […]

Trying to Stop Wikileaks

Yesterday, I mentioned that Federal Judge Jeffrey S. White issued an order shutting down the Wikileaks site. He did this by ordering the domain registrar to disable the wikileaks.org domain. This only disables the name lookup feature, not the underlying website, which is still available via its IP address: http://88.80.13.160 In a comment to my […]

Deserts, Predators, Domain Names, Musical Theater, Web Design, and Big Cats

Random shots around the web: John Ruberry writes about Chicago’s food deserts. According to a University of New Hampshire study, everything the media tell you about Internet predators is wrong. Federal Judge Jeffrey S. White issued an apalling (and dangerous if not overturned) order to shut down an entire web site because someone complained about a few […]

Choosing an SUV

After my trusty old Camry gave up the ghost, my wife and I decided to buy an SUV. It was a big deal for me, so I’m going to be blogging about it a bit, in case anyone is interested. Buying an SUV is insanely complicated because the category covers a lot of vehicles designed […]

An Especially Tricky Case to Prosecute

A few months ago, I was a juror on a criminal case where a guy was accused of attacking a cop. The cop was the only witness to the attack, and the defendant said he didn’t do it. We the jury thought the defendant’s story had too many problems, so we disregarded it and then […]

Welcome to the Club, Steven

According to an AP wire story, China isn’t happy with Steven Spielberg: Hollywood director Steven Spielberg’s decision to quit the Beijing Olympics over the Darfur crisis is drawing condemnation by China’s state-controlled media and a groundswell of criticism from the Chinese public. … In newspaper commentaries and lively Internet forums, they have expressed outrage, scorn […]

Time For a New Car

Ever since we bought our last car in 1998, my wife and I have been thinking that our next car should be an SUV of some kind. Our 1997 Camry feels roomy inside, but that’s because of good ergonomics. If you try to fit in something not shaped like a human, like a bunch of […]

Aliens or Romance?

Today’s online Chicago Tribune has a blurb that reads: Aliens or romance? John Kass wants to know what you think is the Best Valentine’s Day Date Movie. John, if you choose your woman wisely, aliens are romance. Update: My wife just called me from the road. She wants to know the name of the spaceship […]

On Warrantless Wiretapping

[This is a little late by now, but I thought I’d put it out there anyway.] A few days ago, the Wall Street Journal had an editorial about the wiretapping bill in the Senate. Let’s sample a few choice phrases: The Senate takes up wiretapping of foreign terrorists this week, and the stakes couldn’t be […]

Common Sense, It’s a Theory

Scott Greenfield was ranting against relying too much on “common sense”: One of the offshoots of the push that resulted in the elevation of George W. Bush to the presidency was the empowerment of “regular” people.  This meant that views and opinions, under the category of “common sense,” were raised to a level equal to, […]

If The Writer’s Strike Ends Now…

If the writers’ strike ends now, here’s what’s going to happen to some of my favorite shows: Bones – Four pre-strike eps left. Don’t know if they’ll make more this season. House – 4 new eps this season, air by April. Battlestar Galactica – returns with pre-strike eps, production on remainder of final season starts […]

Strange Skills

Visit Gideon’s blog to see a really strange form of motorsport. No, make that gameshow. The thing is, I enjoy seeing people demonstrate the impressive skills needed to do seemingly ordinary things. A school bus rodeo is a little too removed from my experience for me to get into, but I can appreciate fine grocery […]

Our Own Kind Of Taliban

What if Muslim contries did what our DEA does? When we all got a pretty good look at the Taliban back in 2001, it was clear that their religious fanaticism lead to some strange rules for living. I mean, what kind of insane tyrant jails men for cutting their beards? We have our own version […]

In Which I Succumb to Hatred…

I’m not a violent person by nature, and I don’t think anyone deserves to sexually molested—not on the job, not on a date, not in prison—but at 3:00 am, after a long day, I think I’d get a good chuckle out of it if someone raped these guys in the ass! I’ll probably feel bad about […]

Rear Wheel Drive Flashback

Chicago just got pounded with a lot of snow, and driving in it is turning out to be an educational experience. Or maybe I should say a re-educational experience. After 190,000 miles, my Toyota Camry finally gave up the ghost a few weeks ago. I haven’t got a new car yet, but a friend was […]

Invisible Votes

It’s not for nothing that Chicago is known for the slogan “Vote early, vote often.” This town is famous for voting irregularities. Florida took that fame away from us, what with a presidential election swinging on butterfly ballots and hanging chad. But today, in a story reported by the Tribune‘s David Kidwell, we showed that although […]

In Which I Show Total Confidence in Local Democracy

If I get time tomorrow, I’m going to visit a few polling places to talk to people and take pictures for the Chi-Town Daily News. I know where I have to vote, but I haven’t got a clue where to find other polling places in the neighborhood. The first place I thought to look is […]

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