New car fever

You don’t need a new car, said one of the Tappet brothers on Car Talk, until your monthly repair bills exceed what your monthly car payments would be.  I am approaching that point, so I’m researching new cars.  Since you readers express remarkable expertise on just about every topic I raise, I come to you for advice.   My impression is that automobile quality and technology have come a long ways since I last bought a car over a decade ago.  So help me out.  Though I would love one of those autobahn monsters they laud on Top Gear, I need something affordable, though preferably with a little pizzazz in the way of performance, styling, or technology.  Do any of you have a car that you’d recommend or recommend that I stay away from?  What would you consider the best American-made vehicles (whatever that means these days)?  What considerations should I factor in?  And how much should a person offer below the sticker price?

Bible reading in the digital age

In answer to my question about how reading conditioned by the internet might affect the way people read the Bible, Rev. Lucas Woodford (my former pastor) pointed to this article by Robin Phillips published in Touchstone in 2012, which also gets into the various ways reading itself has already changed over the centuries.  An excerpt after the jump. [Read more…]

Does the internet degrade our ability to read?

There is some evidence that the way we read on the internet–skimming, surfing, hopping from link to link–is interfering with the ability to read complex, content-rich books that require reading slowly and thoughtfully.

Do you think?  Having just finished the 1500 page unabridged Les Miserables for free on my Kindle (an overwhelming experience that I’ll blog about later), I say not necessarily.  But still, I can see the danger.  I wonder what the eye-bite approach would do to Bible reading.

[Read more…]

Less cash, less crime

Cash is portable, hard to trace, and universally-accepted, no questions asked.  Which makes it a good thing to steal.  There may be a relationship between the decline in the crime rate and the rise of debit-cards and other electronic means of exchange.  A study suggests this is the case in poor neighborhoods, ever since the welfare system replaced cashable checks with debit cards. [Read more…]

Wiping out your social media debts

Thanks to Anthony Sacramone for alerting me to this Portlandia bit, Declare Social-Media Bankruptcy | Strange Herring:

Just let Google run the country?

Justine Tunney, one of the founders of Occupy Wall Street, is calling on President Obama to resign, have all government workers retire, and transfer all administrative authority to the tech industry, making Google chairman Eric Schmidt the “C.E.O. of America.”

But aren’t leftists always complaining about the influence of big corporations on the government?  Ms. Tunney claims that the tech industry is actually “post-capitalist.”

OK, she only has two signatures on her petition at the time of the news report, so this isn’t a realistic threat to our constitutional republic.  But still, even people on the right say that government should be run “like a business.”  What are the problems with this? [Read more…]