Further Musings

Beauty smote his heart, he looked up from the forsaken land & hope returned to him

Archive for July 2006


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Since we don’t get cable (or even ABC since our neighbors moved in) I don’t often get the chance to laugh this hard. I’m not sure if reading macro-economic blogs is a substitute but it did point me right for this link. How can you not love it when the TV news media gets mocked this well?

. . . and then I watched this interview. I actually cried. I do respect the Congressman for his willingness to go on the air with Stephen Colbert and for his unflappableness.

Having watched one or two more it appears that Colbert is going to work his way across the 435 districts.  I think that Colbert poses more serious questions to the right and left than “real” political journalists.  I like his mix of real and hilarious questions and how pins when they make standard political responses.

Written by furthermusings

July 29, 2006 at 2:47 am

Posted in Politics

It Begins in Ernest

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Today, after many long months of reading I have finally compiled my selected readings for my thesis into one bibliography. It is refreshingly long and looks to be a start for the long awaited thesis. Prayers are appreciated for attitude and success. I go forth having with this exhortation from my advisor:

“There are two kinds of political scientists:

pothole fillers and road builders.

Let’s build a road.”

Let the writing begin.


Written by furthermusings

July 27, 2006 at 7:03 pm

Posted in Political Science

Did Your Family Have These?

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I found this on a desk while boxing up loose papers at our future residence. I imagine the dad handing these out to the three kids on a road trip in 1962 saying “Remember children, you only get to go once between here and the beach so use this wisely!”  It still makes me laugh at the thought of it.


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July 24, 2006 at 1:27 pm

Posted in Pictures

Still There?

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For those that are still checking Further Musings after these many blank days I’m sorry for the repeated emptiness. I’ve been out of commission for a while and you might wonder from what.

For the last last week the main reason has been that I feel like I am in a whirlwind. We’ve been house-sitting for a friend, attending and helping with a good friend’s wedding, finding out we’re moving, cleaning, visiting the doctor several times for some severe poison ivy, and not sleeping much. Whew. At the moment feel very much like I’ve been run over.

What?! What’s that you say? Your moving?

Yep! On Monday of last week I stopped in to visit some elderly friends in a nursing home for a semi-frequent visit. Doc asked me if I had a lease. I asked why he was asking and he offered to let us house sit for “a year or two” until they sell the house.

On Friday I confirmed with him and this week has been a rushed swirl of moving, packing, rearranging, scrubbing and patching their house to allow us to move our things and ourselves into the main floor before the school year starts. Whew! There is much more work to be done but we are excited and grateful to be living in a beautiful house soon.

I don’t know if much blogging will happen for a while. Occasionally these days I think of something worth thinking about or writing about but the well of good posts seems dry for now. We’ll see if it springs back to life. Perhaps thinking about why that’s so would be a good exercise. We’ll see what happens.

Written by furthermusings

July 19, 2006 at 8:25 pm

Posted in General

Incentive Compatibility and Parenting

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An acquaintance from school recently blogged a section of an article about applying economic principles to parenting.  He quoted the following example which was too funny not to pass along.

Case study #1: It’s go-home time at my daughter’s preschool. I see a parent struggling to get snow pants on his toddler in an 80-degree room. I think: “Where’s the incentive compatibility in that?” I do it the easy way: I scoop up my daughter in my right arm and her winter clothes in my left and out the door we go. Whereupon, in the 30-degree cold, she dons her winter duds at a speed rivaled only by local firefighters answering a call.

Before you accuse me of being a cold-hearted economist, consider: his daughter was crying, mine was not; he was exasperated and grumpy, I was not. So who’s on higher indifference curves?

Written by furthermusings

July 9, 2006 at 5:00 pm

Posted in Geeky Blogs

Harry Potter Dies?

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What’s this madness I read in the NYTimes this morning?

“Ever since J. K. Rowling announced that she might, in Book 7, kill off Harry Potter, my 6-year-old daughter, Emilie, has taken to asking, as often as possible, and with the impish air of She Who Speaks What Must Not Be Said: ”Mommy, did you hear that Harry’s going to die?”

At which point my 9-year-old daughter, Julia, shouts, ”Maybe will die,” and I avert my eyes and become very busy trying to find some multiplication flash cards.”

Does anyone know more?

Written by furthermusings

July 7, 2006 at 12:55 pm

Posted in General

The Washington Post on Changing Subsidies Programs

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The Washington Post has an interesting article today on the history of the federal farm subsidies program and one particularly odd facet of it. It’s interesting, quite long, and does a good job of showing how politics creates and influences policy.

On the sidebar they have a series of graphs and slide shows. The most interesting graph shows how much each county is receiving “direct and countercyclical payments” and who’s getting how much the top recipients are receiving. There is also an interesting timeline of the history of farm subsidies.

I wonder if there is more to come on this topic from the Post.

Written by furthermusings

July 2, 2006 at 3:16 pm

Posted in Politics