Aug 20 2019
06:28 am

New York Times, David Streitfeld:

Over the last few weeks I got a close-up view of this process when I bought a dozen fake and illegitimate Orwell books from Amazon. Some of them were printed in India, where the writer is in the public domain, and sold to me in the United States, where he is under copyright.

Others were straightforward counterfeits, like the edition of his memoir “Down and Out in Paris and London” that was edited for high school students. The author’s estate said it did not give permission for the book, printed by Amazon’s self-publishing subsidiary. Some counterfeiters are going as far as to claim Orwell’s classics as their own property, copyrighting them with their own names.
all editions of “1984” are the same, right?

Not always, not on Amazon.

Sheesh. Ok, then.

Aug 20 2019
06:19 am

I said it in 2010 when Obama proposed Social Security tax cuts and I will say it now. This is a really bad idea.

Several senior White House officials have begun discussing whether to push for a temporary payroll tax cut as a way to arrest an economic slowdown, three people familiar with the discussions said, revealing growing concerns about the economy among President Trump’s top economic aides.
Their panicking and flailing is palpable and adding more uncertainly to the economy and making a possible Trump recession more likely,” said Rep. Bill Pascrell Jr. (D-N.J.).

Obama did it! Wait, that seems like it would mean it would be all wrong.

Besides, on Monday the current President said and tweeted, " “We have the strongest economy, by far, in the world.”

What is wrong in Washington? Oh, right, I forgot the current President is running the government like one of his businesses. Destined to fail?

It is a brutal time to be an American farmer.

Hammered by trade wars, a climate crisis and the worst income-to-debt ratio in a generation, calls to Farm Aid crisis lines have doubled in some states, and the website for Iowa corn growers now includes a page on suicide prevention.

Since every plant, from redwoods to soybeans, moves heat-trapping carbon dioxide out of the air and into the ground, the right amount of innovation, conservation and financial motivation could help modern farmers keep the CO2 there while still making a living and feeding the world.

"We need to think about farming more than just producing food, fuel and fiber, but rather carbon management," says Gene Takle, emeritus professor at Iowa State's Department of Agronomy.

Scientists say farmers could grow their way out of the climate crisis

Aug 19 2019
11:30 am

My Galaxy Tab S2 battery was aging, requiring multiple charges to get through the day. This seemed like a good excuse to upgrade. Samsung is about the only company still making quality Android tablets. I looked at the Tab S4 and the Tab S5e (e for "essential," meaning lower cost).


Aug 18 2019
08:35 pm

Seems like the age should be older than seven

TCA Code 55-10-803 (a) It is an offense for a person responsible for a child younger than seven (7) years of age to knowingly leave that child in a motor vehicle located on public property or while on the premises of any shopping center, trailer park, or any apartment house complex, or any other premises that is generally frequented by the public at large without being supervised in the motor vehicle by a person who is at least thirteen (13) years of age, if:


Aug 18 2019
12:04 pm
By: R. Neal

Long-term exposure to air pollution, especially ground-level ozone, is like smoking about a pack of cigarettes a day for many years, a new study says, and like smoking, it can can lead to emphysema.

Exposure to polluted air is like smoking a pack a day, study says

Aug 16 2019
08:07 am

"Republicans aren't going to run stupid people."

Uh, Marsha Blackburn?

Aug 16 2019
12:43 am
By: michael kaplan

Maybe the next Mayor could invite the Chinese to reopen local factories. Imagine locally-produced jeans ...


Real estate ...

President Donald Trump has on multiple occasions brought up buying Greenland from the Danish government and the White House counsel's office has looked into the possibility...

Trump has asked aides if it's possible to buy Greenland, sources say

Aug 15 2019
10:16 am

The City of Knoxville's Community Development Department is holding six public meetings in August and September to seek public input on "prioritizing the community’s need for affordable housing and services for homeless people, veterans, single mothers and other groups." There is also an online survey.

More info in the City press release after the break...


Aug 15 2019
06:07 am

Through Tuesday, 8/13/2019, 3,383 ballots have been cast in the Knox County election (2,953 early voters, 430 absentee ballots). That is less than 500 early voter ballots a day (6 days).

The Downtown West voting location has the most early voters at 1,234. New Harvest is second with 715 ballots. The South location has the least ballots at 241. The South location may be the worst location of the five.

Let's hope more voters show up for this important election.

Aug 14 2019
08:13 am

CNBC: The yield on the benchmark 10-year Treasury note on Wednesday broke below the 2-year rate, an odd bond market phenomenon that has been a reliable, albeit early, indicator for economic recessions.

Aug 14 2019
06:48 am

Or, is he slyer than a fox?

Donald Trump has insisted that China is “paying for” the tariffs he has placed on their exports: “We’re [currently] collecting 25% on $250 billion [worth of Chinese products], and China is paying for it … Don’t let anyone tell you that we’re paying. We’re not paying.”

...on Tuesday, the White House thought better of it and dropped all those items [i.e. video-game consoles, computer monitors, clothing, footwear, toys, and miscellaneous electronics.] from its list. “We’re doing this for the Christmas season,” Trump told reporters on Tuesday. “Just in case some of the tariffs would have an impact on U.S. customers.”

China's paying the tariffs? We're paying the tariffs? What an idiot. On the other hand, any people privy to his change in policy ahead of the change could make good money in the stock market. It's almost as if.... Nah, couldn't be.

Aug 13 2019
11:35 am

From the Not-So-Farfetched File:

It has been a summer of Trump Administration confusion regarding foreign policy basics—things like place names and recent history. Presidential adviser Ivanka Trump outdid her father’s creation of the country of Nambia by congratulating Boris Johnson on leading the United Kingston.

President Trump then offered U. S. aid to Russia to fight Siberian forest fires—not suggesting better raking as he did for California. Confused as Trump is after conversations with Vladimir Putin, Trump also suggested the Soviet Union dissolution was a rebranding effort.

I spent part of this summer in Prague, vainly seeking Michael Cohen’s cell phone. At one point, however, I was whisked away for a secret meeting. Norwegian spymaster Kjell Slartibartfast met me at an Oslo café across from his cover office at the Fjord Foundation. The smell of lutefisk hung in the air as Kjell said, “Mark, he outed us masterfully.”

Slartibartfast was referencing earlier this summer when ABC News’ George Stephanopoulos pressed President Trump about future foreign interference in our elections, and Trump’s mind crisply went to the most likely culprit, Norway.


Aug 12 2019
08:32 am

Apparently there are areas in San Francisco where a person has to dodge human waste along the sidewalks. "The city received nearly 27,000 requests for feces removal in the most recent fiscal year, although not all are human."

"San Francisco started its "Pit Stop" program in July 2014 with public toilets in the city's homeless-heavy Tenderloin, after children complained of dodging human waste on their way to school. "

"Advocates say steam cleaning requests have dropped in areas surrounding some of the public toilets. The mayor signed a budget Thursday that includes more than $9 million for the Pit Stop toilets this year, up from $5 million last fiscal year. San Francisco will add seven new bathrooms in a city where a one-night count of homeless people grew 17% in the past two years."

$9 million dollars for public toilets for the homeless?!?!? Yes, it is good that the city is doing something. But, wow, they must really have a homeless problem and it does not appear to be getting any better.

Aug 12 2019
08:16 am

University of Tennessee Assistant Chief Keith Lambert pulls a gun on residents when he went to what he thought was his house, but it was not his house. According to the report KCSO released on Thursday, the resident "told Lambert that he was at the wrong home, at which point she said he pulled a gun from his waistband and told her, 'I'm a cop, get out of my house.'"

A spokesperson for the Knox County District Attorney's Office said in a text message to WVLT News that "We declined prosecution and sent the case file investigating University of Tennessee Police Department assistant chief Keith Lambert back to the Knox County Sheriff's Office.

UTPD told WVLT News that Lambert remains on paid administrative leave and the agency is continuing its internal investigation.

Some neighbors are now on edge in the Hardin Valley neighborhood.

"What if he decides to flip again and hears my dogs bark and decides to shoot them?" Hicks asked. "Or my children screaming because they're 15-months-old and kids cry. Something switches and he pulls his gun and starts shooting?"

Sheesh. Is this one of those cases where the person should not be allowed to own a gun, much less work at a police department?

Aug 11 2019
08:46 am

Today I have a column in The Daily Times (Maryville/Blount County). It's the first of what I hope will be many. I'm scheduled to appear every Second Sunday of the month.

Here it is

Aug 10 2019
06:56 am

Brooks claims to provide "a resentment-free assessment of the boomers, conducted by a trained pop sociologist with no ax to grind." Can't say I agree with his entire assessment, but have to like and laugh at some.

He gives Baby Boomer politics a C-. But, then he starts with Bill Clinton. I guess I get it, Clinton was the first Baby Boomer president. But, many of us Baby Boomers have been pretty heavily involved in politics since 1972, way before Clinton's presidency.

He says, "Baby boomers have been unable to match that level of talent." It could be all that early sex, drugs, rock and roll eliminated some of the "talent" because they were afraid of the morality test (Manners and Morals).:)

His overall grade for Baby Boomers is a B. In four out of seven categories he gives a score of A- to A (Social Movements, Popular Culture, Technology and Innovation, Lifestyle), the remaining three are C- to C (Manners and Morals, High Culture, and Politics). A little harsh on some of the Cs, but oh well.

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