For the New York Times.

I like the New York Times, but having Garrison Keillor write a take-down "review" of a book written in praise of melancholy – I’m reaching for the right metaphor here, but failing.  Let’s just call it an article – by a "humorist" upon whose "popularity" rests on people turning that frown upside down – taking snide potshots at someone who doesn’t think Shiny Happy Everything is all there is.  Doesn’t make for valuable reading.

Better is this article (Why the dumb title?  Why filed under fashion instead of, um, home & garden?) about the next generation of people and farming.  You know: where food comes from.  Local turnaround Broadturn Farm gets a mention.  Hurrah for CSA!

Finally, on not being reassured:

The country that elected George Bush — sort of — because he seemed
like he’d be more fun to have a beer with than Al Gore or John Kerry is
really getting its comeuppance. Our credit markets are foundering, and
all we’ve got is a guy who looks like he’s ready to kick back and start
the weekend.  …this economic crisis has been going on
for months, and all the president could come up with sounded as if it
had been composed for a Rotary Club and then delivered by a guy who had
never read it before. “One thing is certain that Congress will do is
waste some of your money,” he said. “So I’ve challenged members of
Congress to cut the number of cost of earmarks in half.”

being incoherent, this is a perfect sign of an utterly phony speech.
Earmarks are one of those easy-to-attack Congressional weaknesses, and
in a perfect world, they would not exist. But they cost approximately
two cents in the grand budgetary scheme of things. Saying you’re going
to fix the economy or balance the budget by cutting out earmarks is
like saying you’re going to end global warming by banning bathroom



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