The GOP's deficit-attention disorder.

What's happening in our readers' forum.
Dec. 21 2002 1:16 AM

Deficit-Attention Disorder

The Fray on the Republicans' new math.

(Continued from Page 4)

Check out PubliusToo and Zathras's discussion of the utility of Hitchens' invective beginning here.

Never having to say you're sorry: Tim Noah argues that Strom Thurmond never apologized for his segregationist past and only maintained his grasp on power by "[buying] off a few key blacks with pork-barrel spending, political appointments, and the like." South Carolinian Shadow_Government begs to differ here:

Strom did more than merely buy off black leaders. In the 1970s his Senate campaigns and his massive constituent service operations strongly encouraged, in both word and deed, the acceptance of desegregation and the notion of racial equality. In essence, Strom provided a role model for racist white Southerners to adjust to the changing world and back away from racial hatred and bias, without ever really admitting they had done anything wrong.

This may seem quite cynical, but it profoundly improved the racial climate in South Carolina. Lecturing Southerners about why they were wrong and Yankees were right would have pretty much guaranteed that they would stick to their guns and continue to subvert racial integration. Offering them "defeat with honor" proved to be a pragmatic mechanism for social change.

Immiseration, Inc.: Responding to the "tax the poor" Chatterbox, ChasHeath pulls out some quartile analysis to show how "the upper middle class is just another part of the undertaxed majority"; senor_crews (and others) provide an object lesson in how bogged down any transition to a flat tax would necessarily be (the better the discussion, the more obvious the troubles); and Yoni begins the best taxes discussion (thanks to Raging_Toroid, Retief, OhioBoy, and Chad-B). Retief cuts through the fog of undertaxation here:

If the WSJ considers people who make so little they don't owe federal income tax "lucky", perhaps they'd like to reduce their salaries to take advantage of this incentive. What, no takers?

There's the small matter of your advance, Mr. Smith: In the Music Box Fray discussion of indie rock, concentric noted that Elliott Smith was still an indie:

As of January, Dreamworks had agreed to permit Elliott Smith to release his forthcoming album on the independent label of his choice.

Author David Samuels entered the Fray to respond:

The Dreamworks PR guy that I talked to … dismissed the Rolling Stone story as "a spat" between an artist and the label, and said that Elliott Smith was a "valued Dreamworks artist."

The old Rolling Stone quote therefore appears to be the usual major label tease - unhappy artists are "free" to record for another label, if they pay the label back the hundreds of thousands of dollars that they suddenly owe in promotional costs, studio time, salaries, advances, etc. Given that Dreamworks is owned in part by David Geffen - the man who sued Neil Young for not making "Neil Young records" - the chances of Elliott Smith releasing his next record on an indie label don't seem all that great, unless Dreamworks decides that the record won't sell. ...

Why must I eat mango? BenK has accepted diarist Mark Furstenberg's food-historical challenge and explains why we might prefer the exotic or the pre-made over the traditional. Part of his long post:

It can now be easier for someone to buy a mango than to get heirloom variety pears. This is bound to change what we people choose to spend our money on, and thus, what we cook. If we can get a mango, but no pears, or a salmon, but not a decent mutton shank, then why cook mutton with pears and not salmon with mango? … 8:00 a.m.


Medical Examiner

The Most Terrifying Thing About Ebola 

The disease threatens humanity by preying on humanity.

I Bought the Huge iPhone. I’m Already Thinking of Returning It.

Scotland Is Just the Beginning. Expect More Political Earthquakes in Europe.

Students Aren’t Going to College Football Games as Much Anymore

And schools are getting worried.

Two Damn Good, Very Different Movies About Soldiers Returning From War

The XX Factor

Lifetime Didn’t Think the Steubenville Rape Case Was Dramatic Enough

So they added a little self-immolation.


Blacks Don’t Have a Corporal Punishment Problem

Americans do. But when blacks exhibit the same behaviors as others, it becomes part of a greater black pathology. 

Why a Sketch of Chelsea Manning Is Stirring Up Controversy

How Worried Should Poland, the Baltic States, and Georgia Be About a Russian Invasion?

Trending News Channel
Sept. 19 2014 1:11 PM Watch Flashes of Lightning Created in a Lab  
  News & Politics
Sept. 20 2014 11:13 AM -30-
Business Insider
Sept. 20 2014 6:30 AM The Man Making Bill Gates Richer
Sept. 20 2014 7:27 AM How Do Plants Grow Aboard the International Space Station?
  Double X
The XX Factor
Sept. 19 2014 4:58 PM Steubenville Gets the Lifetime Treatment (And a Cheerleader Erupts Into Flames)
  Slate Plus
Slate Picks
Sept. 19 2014 12:00 PM What Happened at Slate This Week? The Slatest editor tells us to read well-informed skepticism, media criticism, and more.
Brow Beat
Sept. 20 2014 3:21 PM “The More You Know (About Black People)” Uses Very Funny PSAs to Condemn Black Stereotypes
Future Tense
Sept. 19 2014 6:31 PM The One Big Problem With the Enormous New iPhone
  Health & Science
Bad Astronomy
Sept. 20 2014 7:00 AM The Shaggy Sun
Sports Nut
Sept. 18 2014 11:42 AM Grandmaster Clash One of the most amazing feats in chess history just happened, and no one noticed.