Thursday, December 3, 2009

The Decline: Geography of a Recession

I was mesmerized watching this, and mostly saddened.

Worth a Look, Coast to Coast, County by County Decline

Not to get to dramatic, but it reminds me of :

"A spectre is haunting Europe"

Baltimore mayor guilty of embezzlement

This is really great.

CNN) -- A jury convicted Baltimore Mayor Sheila Dixon on Tuesday of embezzlement for improperly using gift cards intended for the needy, the chief investigator for the state prosecutor's office said.

Stealing from the poor for self enrichment.

She was found guilty of a single misdemeanor count of fraudulent misappropriation by a fiduciary. She could be removed from office because it is a theft-related crime,

I would hope so.

Dixon solicited several cards for her own use from two developers, including Patrick Turner, who testified this month that Dixon asked him to donate gift cards from retailers and have them delivered to her office. He said he spent $1,000 total -- $500 for a Best Buy gift card and $500 for a Target one, according to the Baltimore Sun newspaper.

No date was set for sentencing.

CNN Report on this Crime

I can only hope for the best, the maximum sentence for the Honorable Mayor.

I just came across this story today on the radio. I live in Kansas and managed to miss this story, but I am interested in this report which doesn't shock me another dishonest politician.

Networks Briefly Note Dem Mayor's Conviction, Yet Ignored Her Trial

Imagine if you will that former Alaska governor Sarah Palin was accused of taking gift cards donated to her office for redistribution to needy constituents and using them instead for a personal spending spree.

The media firestorm would swirl uncontrollably, of course, and certainly you couldn't fault the media for reporting on the ensuing criminal trial.

Granted, Dixon is only a city mayor, and that may explain some of the lack of coverage, but when ABC did its part to portray her as a champion of the working poor, it's telling that there was no follow up from that network until today.

The December 2 editions of ABC's "Good Morning America" and CBS's "The Early Show" both briefly noted Dixon's conviction during news roundups from the anchor desk, while, of course, failing to note her party affiliation. NBC's "Today" however, failed to even mention the story (transcripts below courtesy of NB's Scott Whitlock and Kyle Drennen, respectively):


Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Awash in fossil fuels

This is a great quesion posed by George F. Will

Awash in fossil fuels

What city contributed most to the making of the modern world? The Paris of the Enlightenment and then of Napoleon, pioneer of mass armies and nationalist statism? London, seat of parliamentary democracy and center of finance? Or perhaps Titusville, Pa.


Actually, it is a good insight.

Since then, America has exhausted its hydrocarbon supplies. Repeatedly.

In 1914, the Bureau of Mines said that U.S. oil reserves would be exhausted by 1924. In 1939, the Interior Department said that the world had 13 years' worth of petroleum reserves.

Then a global war was fought, and the postwar boom was fueled. In 1951 Interior reported that the world had . . . 13 years of reserves. In 1970, the world's proven oil reserves were an estimated 612 billion barrels. By 2006, more than 767 billion barrels had been pumped, and proven reserves were 1.2 trillion barrels. In 1977, scold in chief Jimmy Carter predicted that mankind "could use up all the proven reserves of oil in the entire world by the end of the next decade." Since then the world has consumed three times more oil than was then in the world's proven reserves.

Rest of the commentary is

Worth the Read