More on the death of handwriting

I wrote about handwriting at in an earlier post and here’s a story from BBC bemoaning the loss of handwriting as social grace and art.

Christmas cards, shopping lists and what else? The occasions in which we write by hand are fewer and fewer, says Neil Hallows. So is the ancient art form of handwriting dying out?

Read the rest at news.bbc.co.uk.

Rush Limbaugh’s “drive by” media

I wrote for some 12 unremarkable, journeyman years at the Duluth News-Tribune a long time ago. Now, sitting comfortably out of a hard rain in my Chicago suburb, I listen as Rush Limbaugh rails about the DNT and its big sister in St. Paul as “drive by media.” Not so sure how Rush defines that but I’ve little doubt that its a perjorative.

I wonder if Rush has been touched by the elegant writing of Duluth’s Sam Cook. Or does Rush know that Pulitzer Prize winner Jacqui Banaszynski worked in her early career at Duluth. But, of course, it’s so much easier for Rush to be dismissive in his pissy, junior high bully way.

What Rush ranted about was that the papers would share in a state/fed job-training program. Newspapers are struggling to establish an economic footing in a digital and, perhaps soon, newspaper-less age. (See, Rocky Mountain News closing on Friday.) The training would be to have journalists view their work beyond the paper, the physical paper, and to help sales staff cope in a changing world.

Rush’s bile spew aside, journalists taking government money is an unsettling thought. I just hope journalism evolves so the last person talking isn’t Rush.

Starting the health care debate for dummies

This is a KISS principle approach to the health care debate.

Of course we need health care reform. The U.S. Ranks first in the world for health care spending per capita at $4,721.

Are we getting our moneys worth? Um. No.

Canadians spend just $1,939 per person, 14th in the world, yet you can expect a higher lifespan at 81.53 years versus 78.14 years. And, you’ll get more plastic surgery in Canada than in the U.S., too. BTW, the Swiss own plastic surgery expenses. U.S. is 19th and Canada is 17th.

Let’s not be boobs about the need for reform. We may debate the “how.”

(Data source: NationMaster.com.)

Tradeoffs

Resources are not finite. So, taking any course of action has an effect on other choices. Act. Delay. Dispose.

The following is a bit of a fallacy faulty logic. Our national debate leading up to the Iraq war was clouded by the emotions still lingering from 9/11. We don’t make choices like lining up the pros and cons of one idea versus another. We chose between like ideas. War: Yes or no, in this case.

Still, it is positive to think in other ways. A site called National Priorities suggests making choices on a broader range of issues. Given our resources should we choose war (to keep the debate going here) or another national or social need?

The site has a calculator for the war costs and choices for redirecting that money. What if the money Lake County, Illinois, taxpayers contributed went instead to other needs, like renewable energy?

Taxpayers in Lake County, Illinois will pay $2.6 billion for total Iraq war spending approved to date. For the same amount of money, the following could have been provided:

3,523,639 Homes with Renewable Electricity for One Year

Play around. Don’t get lost.

Free to laugh

Free to laugh
Free to laugh

You discover this point shortly after realizing that you no longer have to laugh at the boss’s jokes.

Unadulterated photogeek lust

The Leica M8 Digital Camera
The Leica M8 Digital Camera

I Stumble photography and photo gear. This tight-bodied little thing keeps coming up. I shudder with desire. If you have one for me, I’ll trade you a lifetime supply of espresso and a cafetiere.

Be careful who you follow

So, this quote is making the rounds, perhaps as some sort of commentary on the stimulus plan. It’s always interesting to see what else the author says. Here’s the first quote:

“You cannot legislate the poor into freedom by legislating the wealthy out of freedom. What one person receives without working for, another person must work for without receiving. The government cannot give to anybody anything that the government does not first take from somebody else. When half of the people get the idea that they do not have to work because the other half is going to take care of them, and when the other half gets the idea that it does no good to work because somebody else is going to get what they work for, that my dear friend, is about the end of any nation. You cannot multiply wealth by dividing it.”

The late Dr. Adrian Rogers

So, did Dr. Rogers offer a solution? Here’s a tidbit from his Wikipedia bio:

“I feel slavery is a much maligned institution. If we had slavery today we would not have such a welfare problem.”

This latter quote is footnoted to OurAmericanValues.org but the link now dead ends on that organization’s site.

So, perhaps it was one of those dumass moments attained at the end of a of a beer binge. However, Rogers didn’t truck with liquor.

The rose or the gardening

This is a found thought among a collection at The Library Thing:

“Goodbye,” said the fox.
“And now here is my secret, a very simple secret:

It is only with the heart that one can see rightly.
What is essential is invisible to the eye.

“What is essential is invisible to the eye,”
the Little Prince repeated, so that he would be sure to remember.

“It is the time you have wasted for your rose that makes your rose so important.”

Antoine de Saint-Exupéry.The Little Prince.

Antoine de Saint-Exupéry was also a noted aviator who died when his P-38 crashed off Marseilles in 1944. He was flying for the Free French on a reconnaissance against the Nazis.

Rediscovering classic books always turns up a pearl for the adult who reads not to but with a child.

Save a journalist

Little time is better spent than a Sunday morning curled up with great company, good coffee and a fat newspaper. Such is a period of renewal.

Journalism itself needs renewal. The economic model of newspapers is challenged by competitors and the World Wide Web. And, we all like our stuff on the Internet free. Charging for content has not proven widely successful, yet.

Time recently reported on How to Save Your Newspaper. The conflict, as Walter Isaacson, former managing editor of Time, reports, is that while the economic models are faltering the demand for news has never been greater. Continue reading “Save a journalist”