You think Healthcare Dot Gov is a national disaster? Well let's not forget this:
In June, 2001, the F.B.I. awarded the contractor Science Applications International Corp. (S.A.I.C.) a fourteen-million-dollar contract to upgrade the F.B.I.’s computer systems. The project was called Virtual Case File, or V.C.F., and it would ultimately cost over six hundred million dollars before finally being abandoned, in early 2005, unfinished and never deployed. V.C.F. was then replaced with a project called Sentinel, expected to launch in 2009, which was “designed to be everything V.C.F. was not, with specific requirements, regular milestones and aggressive oversight,” according to F.B.I. officials who spoke to the Washington Post in 2006. [...]
This wonderful new browser plug-in will inform you how many tiny fingers made that garment or handbag you are searching for online. I find this highly useful. The number of child laborers is sort of equivalent to thread count for sheets. The more tiny fingers worked upon it, the more valuable it must be. I think that's their point at least. (via)
What are you going to see at the movies this weekend (if you're not being held all weekend by the LAPD for exercising your First Amendment rights): the one with the dude with the giant schlong or the movie about the girl who gets paid to be unconscious while old dudes fondle her? USA! USA! Or have you seen Melancholia yet? Apart from the first five minutes, which are A+, and maybe the next 45, which are sinisterly hilarious, it's pretty much like these nine things, which include but are not limited to "overdosing on cement mix and diet tonic water" and "listening to a radio play [...]
"The interchange fees that banks now charge stores for debit transactions are economically and functionally identical to the check interchange fees prohibited by the Fed almost a century ago." —Retail banking is a business almost entirely built on fees—and business is real good I mean, reallll good. Even the class action settlements don't offset the profit.
The airwaves have been flooded with pundits talking about all the ramifications, fallouts and consequences of a government shutdown. Is Michele Bachmann's posturing mostly in support of her 2012 ambitions? Are the Democrats using the threat of a shutdown as a fund-raising device? Is it true that Congress will hire scabs to keep the seats filled during negotiations? Yes. Yes. Sure! And yes, Christine O'Donnell is available!
But what do real people think will happen? Below, a tapestry of Twitter pundrity that sums up, as well as anyone really, what America faces should the government shut down.
Ooh, smoke billowing at 14th and I, NW, in D.C.! Maybe it's all the hot air being burned right now on Cabalist in the wake of that story on up-and-coming journalist-and-blogger Beltway Insiders, the one that had an all-male cast. Cabalist, should you not be a manly Beltway Insider yourself, is the email listserv Journolist replacement, where the in-the-know politicos discuss amongst themselves the weighty wonky workings of the world. (I'm jealous! I want in!) Here's a brief note to our wonky Cabalistic boyfriends in D.C.: whenever a reporter calls, you always ask with whom else he is speaking. And who his editor is. And what [...]