433 stories
·
0 followers

How Reagan Lost The Nomination But Won The Republican Party

1 Comment

Once upon a time, the Republican Party was tearing itself apart. It was 1976, and Ronald Reagan was mounting a conservative challenge to the “accidental president,” Gerald Ford, for the GOP nomination. After a hard-fought primary and a convention fight, Reagan lost the nomination. But he won the Republican Party. And it was all sorted out at that year’s Republican National Convention.

In “The Contested Convention,” a short documentary directed by Stephanie Wang-Breal for FiveThirtyEight, we revisit the 1976 Republican primary, which set the GOP on a more conservative course for the next several decades.

Read the whole story
rosskarchner
2900 days ago
reply
Worth watching
Share this story
Delete

Public Affairs Specialist (Web Operations Coordinator)

1 Comment
Job Announcement Number:
16-OPA-1738201
Location Name:
Washington DC, District of Columbia
Department:
Judicial Branch
Agency:
Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts
Occupation Code:
1035
Pay Plan:
AD
Appointment Duration:
Excepted Service Permanent
Opening Date:
Tuesday, July 12, 2016
Closing Date:
Tuesday, July 26, 2016
Job Status:
Full Time
Salary:
$64,650.00 to $122,961.00 / Per Year
Pay Grade(s):
00 to 00
Who May Apply:
United States Citizens
Job Summary:
AO positions are classified and paid under a broad-banded system with the exception of positions in the AO Executive Service. Salary is commensurate with experience. Most AO employees are eligible for full federal and Judiciary benefits. The AO is committed to attracting the best and brightest applicants in our support of the Third Branch of government. We take pride in serving the Judicial Branch and supporting its mission to provide equal justice under law. This position is designated as confidential or policy-determining under the Administrative Office (AO) Personnel Act, Section 3(a)(5)(B) and, as such, is not covered by the AO's personnel regulations developed under the AO Personnel Act of 1990.
Read the whole story
rosskarchner
2902 days ago
reply
Looks like an interesting gig
Share this story
Delete

Hampton Roads Regional Jail: By default, Virginia's largest mental hospital

1 Share

The mockery can be unrelenting.

It frightens Andre Watkins so badly that he asked to be moved from a general population pod to an isolation cell at Hampton Roads Regional Jail.

Some, he admits, comes from voices that only he hears. In the past, those voices led the homeless 34-year-old to hospital...

Read the whole story
rosskarchner
2905 days ago
reply
Share this story
Delete

chill.once.waddle

1 Comment

what3words[Image: Screen-grab from what3words].

Using the bizarre three-word addressing system known as what3words, the now-destroyed curb in Hayward, CA, mentioned in the previous post, is located at a site called “chill.once.waddle.”

As you can tell, of course, what3words is not a descriptive language, and these phrases are not intended to mean anything: they are simply randomly-generated sets of words used to give any location on earth a physical address.

As Quartz explained the system back in 2015, it is, at heart, “a simple idea”:

…a combination of three words, in any language, could specify any three meter by three meter square in the world—more than enough to designate a hut in Siberia or a building doorway in Tokyo. Altogether, 40,000 words combined in triplets label 57 trillion squares. Thus far, the system has been built in 10 languages: English, Spanish, French, German, Italian, Swahili, Portuguese, Swedish, Turkish, and, starting next month, Arabic… All together, this lingua franca requires only five megabytes of data, small enough to reside in any smartphone and work offline. Each square has its identity in its own language that is not a translation of another. The dictionaries have been refined to avoid homophones or offensive terms, with short terms being reserved for the most populated areas

The addresses are poetically absurd—shaky.audit.detail, salsa.gangs.square, dozed.lamps.wing.

I mention this, however, because I meant to post last month that “Mongolia is changing all its addresses to three-word phrases.” Again, from Quartz:

Mongol Post is switching to the What3Words system because there are too few named streets in its territory. The mail network provides service over 1.5 million square km (580,000 square miles), an area that’s three times the size of Spain, though much of that area is uninhabited. Mongolia is among the world’s most sparsely populated countries, and about a quarter of its population is nomadic, according to the World Bank.

While, on one level, in an age of stacks and infinite addressability, this seems like a thrilling, almost science-fictional step forward for locating and mapping physical spaces, it also seems like an alarming example of national over-reliance on a proprietary address system, one that the state itself ultimately cannot control.

Imagine a nation-state losing influence over the physical coordinates of its own territory, or a population stuck living inside an outdated, even discontinued address network, and needing to start again, from scratch, renaming all its streets and buildings—not to mention all the lost local histories and significance of certain place names, from avenues to intersections, that need to be reclaimed.

Granted, in this particular case, the system is being adopted precisely because “there are too few named streets” in Mongolia, that does not change the fact that the country will soon be dependent upon the continued existence of what3words for its packages to be delivered, its services to run, and its spatial infrastructures to function. It will be interesting to see how the transition to the use of these peculiar place tags goes—but, even more so, how this decision looks in five or ten years’ time.

Read the whole story
rosskarchner
2906 days ago
reply
Is the mechanism for converting a phrase to a location proprietary?
Share this story
Delete

McAuliffe unveils electronic voter registration at Va. DMV

1 Comment
The shift from paper will make government more efficient and environmentally friendly, Democratic governor says.





Read the whole story
rosskarchner
2907 days ago
reply
Cool
Share this story
Delete

'Clean coal' power-plant project is a debacle, puts financial burden on customers in a poor state

1 Share
A "clean coal" power plant that was designed to be a model "for future power plants to help slow the dangerous effects of global warming;" that was supposed to "bring thousands of jobs to Mississippi, the nation’s poorest state; and to extend a lifeline to the dying coal industry" is two years behind schedule and nearly $5 billion over budget, Ian Urbina reports for The New York Times, offering new details of a promised boon that is appearing more like a boondoggle. (Wikipedia map: Kemper County)

"The Kemper project is a story of how a monopoly utility, with political help from the Mississippi governor and from federal energy officials who pressured state regulators in letters to support the project, shifted the burden of one of the most expensive power plants ever built onto the shoulders of unwitting investors and some of the lowest-income ratepayers in the country," Urbina writes.

"Kemper’s rising price tag and other problems will probably affect the Environmental Protection Agency’s proposed rules on new power plants, and also play into broader discussions about the best way to counter climate change. EPA regulations in effect require new coal plants to have carbon capture technology but are being held up in federal court partly by arguments that the technology is not cost-effective."

"The plant and its owner, Southern Co., are the focus of a Securities and Exchange Commission investigation, and ratepayers, alleging fraud, are suing the company," Urbina writes. "Members of Congress have described the project as more boondoggle than boon. The mismanagement is particularly egregious, they say, given the urgent need to rein in the largest source of dangerous emissions around the world: coal plants."

"Kemper’s rising price tag and other problems will probably affect the EPA’s proposed rules on new power plants, and also play into broader discussions about the best way to counter climate change," Urbina writes. "EPA regulations in effect require new coal plants to have carbon capture technology but are being held up in federal court partly by arguments that the technology is not cost-effective."
Read the whole story
rosskarchner
2908 days ago
reply
Share this story
Delete
Next Page of Stories