As always, as we usher out the old year, our thoughts and browsers turn to the Lake Superior State University in beautiful Sault Sainte Marie, Michigan to see the newly-posted banished words list (the 40th anniversary list!). So I invite all "wordies" (oh, I'm a-gonna get some grief for that) to join in the fun!
Archive of Articles for December, 2014
This is the second part of Monday's article, which consists of a "link dump" of all the stories I really meant to write about last year, but never got around to. Before I get to the second part of the list, though, I have to address a comment from Monday. Here's a second link on a subject mentioned earlier (to an extensive New Yorker article) about "asset forfeiture," also known as "highway robbery by the police." Got too much cash in your car? Well, why don't you just sign it over to our local police force, and you can be on your way (and we won't call Child Protective Services to take your kids away).... This is beyond outrageous, and has been happening in some places in America for a very long time now.
Today's article is nothing more than a giant collection of links to some stories you may have missed during 2014. Another way to put this is: I am clearing out my list of "things I should write about, when I have the time" -- articles which got me thinking, but which I never followed up on by actually writing about them. I'm cleaning up my bookmarks, and so I thought I'd dump all these out there for others to read, perhaps waiting for a flight home or perhaps hiding in your old bedroom because you are sick of dealing with your extended family's drama right now. Ahem.
Welcome back to our annual year-end awards column!
Coincidentally enough, the day that North Korea was hacked and the day I wrote about cyberattacks, this site was hacked.
I've restored it, for now, but there may be some heavy-duty site maintenance in the coming days. In any case, thanks to everyone for their continued patience, and we're certainly sorry this happened. If [...]
The whole story would likely be rejected as a Hollywood plot, on the grounds that nobody would believe it could ever happen, even as comedy or farce. A dictator is insulted by an upcoming movie -- a comedy about his own assassination -- and he unleashes his hackers on the studio to take revenge, by posting their embarrassing emails and then prevents the movie's release by making ludicrous threats to theaters? Preposterous!
As we do every year, we are pre-empting our "Friday Talking Points" columns for the next two weeks, to bring you our best and worst of 2014. And, yes, we are going to continue our supercilious and no-doubt-annoying habit of using the editorial "we" throughout these two columns, so thanks for asking! Heh.
[Note: The above article is real. What follows, however, is not.]
Today, the Cold War's end is finally in sight. Begun almost immediately after World War II, the Cold War was the defining issue in American foreign policy right up to 1989 and the collapse of the Soviet Union. One final legacy remained for another quarter-century after the Berlin Wall came down, though: America's Cuba policy. This final leftover from the Cold War will now be brought to an end, decades after it had been proven not to work. President Barack Obama just spoke on the telephone with the leader of Cuba to finalize the two countries' new relations -- an event that hadn't happened in over half a century. The Cold War is now almost completely a matter of interest only to historians, to put things into context.
The Bill of Rights celebrated its 223rd anniversary yesterday. Anyone who believes this is a positive addition to America's history should thank the Anti-Federalists, since they were responsible for the creation of the first ten amendments to the United States Constitution. There aren't a whole lot of folks today who call themselves "Anti-Federalists," so you'll have to salute their memory instead.