Public posts will appear on the Community blog, and may be promoted to the front page.

We\'ve Got It Covered

Newsweek broke the (eventually retracted) story about a Koran being flushed down a toilet by American interrogators. Indeed, Newsweek also had no qualms about literally trashing the American flag on its Japanese-version magazine cover back in February. During this publication week, the US-version of the magazine had a cover story on a few Hollywood Oscar hopefulls.

The white text reads: “The Day America Died”. Read more »

Poverty, Debt, Subsidies, and Social Movements

Stephen Pollard, senior fellow at the Centre for a New Europe, criticizes the popular Make Poverty History campaign in a Times op-ed. Read more »

Applied Theory

A humorous post translates the conclusions from Blink, Freakonomics, and other recent best sellers into restaurant advice.

[Hat tip: Tyler Cowen]

Catallarchy Hires Guest Blogger

Boston, MA -- In a move designed to cut labor costs and increase profitability, Catallarchy will begin outsourcing some of its content production, company spokesperson Jonathan Wilde announced Monday. He explained that Catallarchy had already entered a trial phase in which Jonathan Dingel of Exploit the Worker will be contributing a series of posts. Read more »

Come again?

The U.S. government announced it will spend $2 billion on sexual performing drugs, i.e. Viagra, over the next decade. Using some math and the U.S. population, that will amount to an additional $6.78 from every man, woman, and child.


An exposé on American Idol, a show aptly titled Fallen Idol, will air on ABC tonight.

One of the many bombshell revelations will be the true identity of sullen, agitated, yet overly-confident contestant Scott Savol.

Read more »

Bleep You

It’s coming up on my one-year anniversary of acquiring a satellite radio unit. Once installed in my vehicle, I’ve rarely looked back on FM and AM, and many others are increasingly feeling the same way. I love satellite radio. The seemingly endless variety of music genres and talk/comedy stations, most without commercials and only limited DJ banter, puts terrestrial radio to shame. Read more »

The Red Plague

Growing Poverty: The Hidden History of Stalin\'s Industrialization

Professor Bryan Caplan of the Department of Economics at George Mason University writes about Stalin's "industrialization" campaign which would be better described as "miltarization". He maintains a website at which he hosts an online Museum of Communism and blogs at EconLog.

An October Revolution Worth Honoring

Samir\'s Story

"I was so angry. I began cussing at him, calling him a motherfucker, a son-of-a-bitch -- you name it. I told him I was Shiite from the south and was part of the revolution against him in 1991. I said he murdered my uncles and cousins. He imprisoned my father. All these years of anger, I couldn't stop. I tried to say the worst things I could. I told him if he were a real man he would have killed himself. I asked him: 'Why are you living in that dirty little hole, you bastard? You are a rat. Your father is a rat.'"


Did Morgan Spurlock's documentary Super Size Me have the opposite intended effect? After all, for some reason, I did feel like grabbing a cheeseburger and fries after watching the film. :wink:

Ghost in the Machine

In the spirit of cell phone jammers, it would seem unsurprising that someone would spend some years in his basement constructing a device that would do the same to television sets. Read more »

Hold On to Your Nickels

The People's Socialist Republic of Berkeley (PSRB) will be voting to change the name of Thomas Jefferson Elementary School. Jefferson, the third president of the United States and a slave-owner (though ironically spoke out against it as well), has been deemed too offensive to grace the name of a government school. Read more »

Food Fight

Thursday night Pat Buchanan was doused with a cup of salad dressing when on a speaking engagement. This is the latest installment in a relatively recent wave of edible items thrown at conservative pundits, which includes pies being tossed at William Kristol and Ann Coulter. Read more »

Wasn\'t Jim Morrison available?

Classify this in the It Sure Looked Like an April Fool's Day Joke, but Wasn't file...

The UK's flagship public broadcasting company, the BBC, asked Bob Marley to do an interview, unaware the reggae singer had died 24 years ago.


Lucente weighs in

OK, so you may not be familiar with Thomas Lucente, an editorial columnist for a small newspaper in the relatively small town of Lima, Ohio. Lucente, a self-proclaimed libertarian, also adds his opinion of the Terry Schiavo case to the figurative slush pile and chooses the side of the parents. Scroll down to the third brief story, although his first story – about the bizarre actions of chess player Bobby Fischer and even more bizarre actions of the US Government – is a good read as well.

Libertarians \"explained\"

Julia Gorin in the Wall Street Journal attempts to describe to Joe Q. Public what a Libertarian is in the context of a funny(?) monologue. Basically, many of the usual stereotypes abound: Libertarians are callous, hedonistic, atheist, and are generally obsessed with pot. Looks like I don't fit her framework definition to a T. Though I consider myself libertarian (in a mild small-'l' way), I tend to believe I'm rather compassionate, monogamous, Christian, and don't partake in drugs. But that's just me. :grin: Read more »

Natural Rights of Recipience

9 1/2 Weeks

Despite the title, this isn't a film review. Rather, it is approximately the point into a pregnancy where abortion should become illegal.

Now, I should explain that my view may be out of step with many (vast majority?) of the contributors and readers of Catallarchy. So, as always with any post, my outlook here doesn't represent anyone's views but my own. That said...

Since the dawn of the abortion debate, which spans back an untold number of years, the central lightning rod has been viewed under the umbrella of religion and religious beliefs, i.e. Pro-life = Christian Right. However, a case against abortion can certainly be made without referencing religion, Catholicism, spirits, souls, etc, even once. The question of when "life" begins and ends can be purely viewed from a biological and scientific angle. Life, in a physical sense, is generally determined by a beating heart and brainwave activity, the telltale signs of we count as a living, breathing homo sapien. Without these, you are not living.

By Week 9 in a pregnancy, the fetus' heart is beating. Also by Week 9, brainwaves are being detected in a fetus. The exact timing may differ slightly in each baby's case, but generally, these two functions are operational by this point in time. According to a survey, 54% who have abortions have them done by 8 weeks, 23% during Weeks 9 and 10, and the remaining 23% after 10 weeks. This is only one survey, but from what I've read elsewhere the percentages generally follow these. So I would say that 54% of the abortions were "allowable", 23% depend on what the ultrasound shows, and the later 23% should've been denied an abortion.

Here are some of the counterpoints I may receive on this topic:

"Mr. Allen, how dare you push your beliefs on others."

As stated earlier, this has nothing to do on a belief system or on my religious affiliation. I'm basing it off a scientifically accepted idea at what constitutes a human life: beating heart, brainwave activity, active nervous system. It's accepted in both the theological and secular communities that when these cease, we physically die. Why not apply it to the other end of the lifespan spectrum? Read more »