Morning Reads for Tuesday, December 10th, 2013

The metric system, Huckleberry Finn, and the Nobel prizes debuted on this day in 1799, 1884, and 1901, respectively.

Morning Reads after the jump!

Other places than Georgia:

  • Did 20’s Prohibition Reduce Our Drinking? (Priceonomics)
  • Netflix Has a Plan to Rewire our Thinking (New Republic)
  • Federal Flood Maps Left New York Unprepared for Sandy and FEMA Knew It (ProPublica)
  • Rumsfeld’s War, and in hindsight, he blew it (New York Review of Books)
  • 75 Simple British Slang Phrases You Should Probably Start Using (LifeHack)
  • As is typical, many are neither British nor phrases, but still worth perusing
  • The Man Who Would Teach Machines to Think/ it’s time to panic (Atlantic)
  • On Mars, an Ancient Lake and Perhaps Something Organic (NY Times)
  • The Search for a Blockbuster Insomnia Drug (New Yorker)
  • The Economics of Infomercials, or my former neighbor’s late night hug (Priceonomics)
  • Forging an Art Market in China (literally?)(NY Times)
  • Statistically, Who’s the Greatest Person in History? (New Republic)
  • How To Waste Time Properly (Nautilus)
  • The 80 best moments in photography (TheRoosevelts)



  • Columbus remembers Kenny Walker, whose death divided the peeps (Ledger-Enquirer)
  • As that city has become ground zero for the Christmas Creeps (Ledger-Enquirer)
  • Eastside Savannah is covered in mystery dust (SMN)
  • Thought of arena AND streetcar leaves Savannah council nonplussed (WSAV)
  • Claimed to be related: Macon, The Creek Indians, Gangs,Food Stamps (Telegraph)
  • Author above, I think, is suggesting work camps,
  • Grady HS accused of faking residences to get students for football, (AJC)
  • I feel like this just happened, but Hartsfield to get new leader, y’all! (AJC)

The metric system is the tool of the devil! My car gets forty rods to the hogshead and that’s the way I likes it.

– Grandpa Simpson









  1. Dave Bearse says:

    Charlie, I’m interested in your perception of “Fast Track” Trade Promotion Authority through Congress for Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) even though it’s yet shrouded in secrecy. Hope to see a column on it sometime soon.

    Concerning your last column, I don’t envy your seeking to change GOP messaging.

    It’s a tough row to hoe when you’ve got Dick Cheney on Fox News implying Obama is so weak that he is aiding the enemy (something that the base knows all Marxists do) in seeking a diplomatic solution with the Iranians:

    As if Cheney, the guy that was instrumental in the initiation the needless trillion dollar Iraq War that resulted in the death of thousands of American soldiers and perhaps one hundred thousand Iraqis, radicalizing thousands, while it simultaneously enriched his cronies, didn’t aid the enemy. Of course we won’t hear Cheney say he ought to know about aiding the enemy because of his experience in doing so. Millennials are much more likely to know soldiers that served in Iraq than who that Ben Ghazi fellow is.

    Obamacare troubles may well be water until the bridge within a year or two. Meanwhile the flood damage the Iraq War inflicted on American lives and pocketbooks will linger after most that are reading this are dead.

    Then there’s the Virginia GOP Chairman discrediting post-election analysis that Gubernatorial candidate Cuccinelli was too conservative for a changing state. “This is false narrative by false prophets.” An RNC committeeman’s analysis was that “[i]t would have been helpful if Ken had not, through much of the campaign, gone silent on his pro-life and other traditional values positions.”

    Good luck overcoming the notion that the hard right rudder adopted by the GOP that has steered it toward a swirling down the drain is to stay the course, but message it differently.

    • Jon Lester says:

      I guess the Virginia GOP needs a new chairman. Cuccinelli got as many votes as his style of candidacy possibly can anymore, and polls have shown that Sarvis, the Libertarian candidate, took more than twice as many votes from McAuliffe as Cuccinelli, and now Libertarians are guaranteed a place on the state ballot for the next 8 years. Both major parties will have to do better to compete.

  2. Ellynn says:

    On your list of Savannah City council big ticket items, the owner of the Sand Gnats is asking $25 million ($20 million is tax payer) for a new stadium (rummor has it he’s taking his toy, I mean team, to Coulumbia SC if they don’t give it to him). The city doesn’t even own the land and he wants it ready by opening day 2016.

  3. bgsmallz says:

    DeKalb does the DeKalb-iest thing ever…

    You know all the happy talk about how the new CEO wanted to get rid of the CEO position and how the commission really wanted to listen to the issues creating the drive for new cities?

    Meh…too much work. Let’s just propose a ‘clarification’ on the relationship b/w CEO and commission and ask for a moratorium on new cities….that will get the people excited!

    Just to recap…’temporary’ Superintendent is selected with a promise to make finding a permanent replacement a priority…contract renewed….temporary CEO selected with a promise to get rid of the position…well, not really ‘get rid of’, more like ‘clarify’ it.

  4. Harry says:

    A friend sent me this…

    Michelle Obama’s Princeton classmate is executive at company that built Obamacare website.

    First Lady Michelle Obama’s Princeton classmate is a top executive at the company that earned the no-bid contract to build the failed Obamacare website.

    Toni Townes-Whitley, Princeton class of ’85, is senior vice-president at CGI Federal which earned the no-bid contract to build the $678 million Obamacare enrollment website at CGI Federal is the U.S. arm of a Canadian company.

    Townes-Whitley and her Princeton classmate Michelle Obama are both members of the Association of Black Princeton Alumni.

    Toni Townes,’85, is a onetime policy analyst with the General Accounting Office and previously served in the Peace Corps in Gabon, West Africa. Her decision to return to work, as an African-American woman, after six years of raising kids was applauded by a Princeton alumni publication in 1998.

    George Schindler, the president for U.S. and Canada of the Canadian-based CGI Group, CGI Federal’s parent company, became an Obama 2012 campaign donor after his company gained the Obamacare website contract.

    On the government end, construction of the disastrous Healthcare.govwebsite was overseen by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), a division of longtime failed website-builder Kathleen Sebelius’ Department of Health and Human Services.

    What is never mentioned, though, is the most outrageous aspect of this whole deal; the fact that IBMoffered to do the project first, but was rejected. Perhaps it was the price…

    They were offering to do it FOR FREE!!!!!!

    CGI Federal did not immediately return a request for comment.

    Let’s see if we can connect the dots here …

    1.) No American companies considered.

    2.) A Canadian company hired.

    3.) No Bid contract for $93 million.

    4.) Top executive at website-building firm went to school with Michelle Obama.

    5.) Previous experience building gun registry for Canadian government;

    6.) Fired by Canadian Government for overruns that cost Canada $100 million.

    7.) Overruns for Obamacare enrollment website now costing U.S. $678 million, and still going up.

    8.) Whole project could have been done professionally by one of the most respected computer companies in the world FOR FREE….

    Does this bother anybody else besides me?

    • Stefan says:

      Which part? That’s mostly a bunch of half-truths cobbled together from email forwards, so yeah, that bothers me. That said, nobody disagrees that the web site is bad. That should bother everyone.

        • Will Durant says:

          It doesn’t take much investigation for me to be absolutely certain that IBM would never offer to do anything “for free”. Full disclosure here; I was a consultant for Big Blue in a previous life. I do remember Fox News running amok over some quotes from the CEO a couple of years ago offering help in ridding the country of $200-250 Billion in Medicare fraud. Upon further review his offer was to only charge the feds $50 Billion or so to find it, so you see with the net difference Fox construed this to be FREE!

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