The day of judgment. “In general, belief in end-time biblical prophecy, in a world purified by catastrophe and then redeemed and made entirely Christian and free of conflict by the return of Jesus in our lifetime, is stronger in the United States than anywhere on the planet and extends from marginal, ill-educated, economically deprived groups, to college-educated people in the millions, through to governing elites, to the very summits of power.” To whom is blind faith most valuable to? History shows, it is an imperative question.
Student Loans Start to Bypass 2-Year Colleges. “The banks that are pulling out say their decisions are based on an analysis of which colleges have higher default rates, low numbers of borrowers and small loan amounts that make the business less profitable. (The average amount borrowed by community college students is about $3,200 a year, according to the College Board.) Still, the cherry-picking strikes some as peculiar; after all, the government is guaranteeing 95 percent of the value of these loans.” One has to assume that the lenders wish to economize on service costs, the costs of chasing down late payments and other such intangibles. The monopolization of industries continues to cut us to the quick.
In Horse Racing, Test of Beefed-Up Champions. Rats, I was hoping for Percheron racing, or other draft horse competitions.
Every time a sports record falls, it seems we must betray a deep skepticism.
I keep passing a gold metallic Scion xB (latest model) when I trip into Santa Fe. It only looks gold if you’re not wearing sunglasses. No matter if you’re wearing amber or grey tinted lenses, the darned thing turns a greenish gold that makes the stomach go queasy ... blech.
SF New Mexican:
Eighty-five acts will be playing for the Santa Fe Plaza’s free summer concert series.
SF New Mexican:
Bus ridership is up in downtown Santa Fe. “Full buses used to be an oddity for Santa Fe’s public transportation system, but as the price of fuel climbs toward $4 per gallon, more people are using the system than ever.”
Hippotherapy. Now, don’t envision heated towels, massage oil, and Fantasia’s hippos ...
“Harvard and Yale are boosting their engineering programs because of increased demand and competition from China, where more engineering degrees are awarded each year than in the U.S.” Boy, you hear the math and science ‘deficit’ is both fiction and reality in the media — now the Ivy League is taking it seriously. Pretty much pegs it in ‘deficit’, there.
Should the effort be named, “No country left behind”?
Most important, “The Federal Reserve’s preferred measure of inflation, which excludes food and fuel costs, slowed in April, today’s Commerce report showed. The gauge rose 0.1 percent, compared with a 0.2 percent increase the previous month.” Which means the Fed likely won’t touch rates next month.
NY Times Art & Design:
Do antiquities belong to their home country, or to the world? I ponder the question: if antiquities are to be preserved, in whose hands will they survive best ... to be shared publicly in perpetuity?
An assortment of book-related links:
Plot interconnections where you will, you’ll do as well as I.
‘Big Brother’, advertising department:
Converseon has been peeking in my weblog archives. Shows up as “conversationminer” in refs. Keep your eyes out for them.
SF New Mexican:
Report: Jemez Mountains already feeling heat of climate change. The ski area in the Jemez has been dry throughout some recent winters.
Oh, for heaven’s sake.
Just read about the Rachael Ray Dunkin’ dustup. Missed opportunity for further laughs here. If the accusers did a basic Google and found Dunkin Brands was spun off by Pernod Ricard (“Omigod, the French ...?!!!”), it might have been somewhat entertaining ... but Dunkin Brands is apparently now part-owned by the Carlyle Group. Surely those laddies are above right-wing suspicion of plotting sinister scarves of satanism?
Put all that aside for a moment. There’s a bigger problem here. I’d think twice before messing with Rachael Ray, who has Sicilian ancestors. If mere symbols have such supposed meaning, imagine what influence heredity can call into play? Con te partiro, indeed.
NY Times Play Magazine:
How hard could it be to ride one stage of the Tour de France? Just wait. You’ll find out. Get those butt-hours in — you’ll need ‘em.
$8 a gallon gas. Hmmm. I’d posit that $8 a gallon gas, achieved by actual price, rather than high taxation, is not going to be quite the picnic imagined here.
World Food Prices Will Remain High, Report Says. Once raised, producers are loathe to lower prices. If demand diminishes, out rolls the excuse that with lower demand they have to hike prices further to maintain profitability. Jaded? Me? Oh, no.
In Britain, Rape Cases Seldom Result in a Conviction. All we experience in the US are the stereotyped images of the British court system, usually through PBS period-pieces. My mind warps to how difficult it must be to convince an aged judge (in powdered wig) about the process of rape. Plum-in-the-mouth accent, “My learned colleague wishes us to believe ...” and all that rot. The reality is, one hopes, much better than that. If not, the courts need updating immediately.
Classical Realism: Antidote to ‘Novelty Art’. There had to be a return to classics and realism. It surprised me, when a friend was choosing schools, to find out modern art institutions don’t teach perspective (“it limits creativity”). Personally, I picked up one-point and two-point in high school, adding three-point and four-point during an elective ‘stage painting’ class in college. Is it better to be ignorant of rules, or to know the rules and consciously break them? Why did everyone love Picasso so? Other than the occasional rare natural talent (not that ubiquitous kid, seemingly present in every art class, who can miraculously mimic the drawings of Michelangelo), I prefer the studied artist who purposely breaks rules to find new territory to illustrate.
Penguin Sees Major e-Book Sales Spike. Poor Jane. Put the mass market trash in e-books, rather.