Last Weekend of July Round-Up

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Charlie Savage of the New York Times considers John Roberts’s appointments to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court.

In making assignments to the court, Chief Justice Roberts, more than his predecessors, has chosen judges with conservative and executive branch backgrounds that critics say make the court more likely to defer to government arguments that domestic spying programs are necessary.

Ten of the court’s 11 judges — all assigned by Chief Justice Roberts — were appointed to the bench by Republican presidents; six once worked for the federal government. Since the chief justice began making assignments in 2005, 86 percent of his choices have been Republican appointees, and 50 percent have been former executive branch officials.

Though the two previous chief justices, Warren E. Burger and William H. Rehnquist, were conservatives like Chief Justice Roberts, their assignments to the surveillance court were more ideologically diverse, according to an analysis by The New York Times of a list of every judge who has served on the court since it was established in 1978.

According to the analysis, 66 percent of their selections were Republican appointees, and 39 percent once worked for the executive branch.

William Hodge, the creator of the comic book series The Uncanny, describes his well-earned success, and use of kickstarter.

I tried to walk away from it.  A few times.  But you never forget your first love.  The desire to create was still there.  The fire still burned.  A couple of years ago, when the government contract I was working on as a web developer came to an end, I found myself out of work, but with time on my hands.  I decided to give one more shot at being a comic book creator.  I vowed that I would be productive and produce my comic book.  I sat down and dusted off my super hero team that had been with me since my youth.

This is how “The Uncanny” was born.  The Uncanny is a different take, my take, on the super hero genre.  They did not get their powers from radiation, accident or mutation.  All of the members of The Uncanny have achieved their powers through achievement, discipline and hard work.

Boing Boing reviews a non-alcoholic whiskey flavored drink, for all the people who enjoy the taste of really cheap whiskey.

There is now a Goth subculture in Kenya.

Brian Cronin considers whether Wolverine losing his adamntium was a gimmick or good. Comic fans in the 90s really liked it, declaring it one of their ten favorite Marvel comics ever.

Peter David posted an old article about writing the comic book wedding of Popeye and Olive Oyl.

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Ross Douthat argues that voter ID Laws are counterproductive for Republicans.

Eliot Spitzer’s wife seems to be seeking a divorce.

Andrew Sullivan has further thoughts on Anthony Weiner, as more information has come to light.

It may well be gay confirmation bias that misled me a bit. The thing about most gay hook-up sites is that they are almost entirely anonymous fantasy platforms which may, in a very small percentage of actual exchanges, lead to, you know, sex. The same can be said about straight sites like OKCupid et al. Everyone is there for roughly the same reasons – varying from voyeurism to romance to sex – and everyone, apart from the ruthless Darwinism of sexual attractiveness, is on an even footing. It’s a form of erotic play, really, almost all of the time. The pay-off is, in many ways, not even the point. It is to enter a world of sexual titillation and distraction.

This, I now better understand, is not what Weiner was doing. For some reason, I missed this essential piece in the NYT about the nature of the chats and sexts. Weiner wasn’t on those sites; he was using Twitter and Facebook and texts. He sent pics to women who had not already consented to sex-talk.

Joan Walsh hypes Bill de Blasio as the real progressive in the race. Alec Baldwin had a piece for the Huffington Post backing de Blasio. It’s an interesting dynamic in the primary, in that a runoff is unlikely, and whoever makes it (unless it’s Weiner) may very well be able to beat Quinn. However, Quinn would likely beat Weiner in the runoff, so she benefits if he stays in.

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About Thomas Mets

I’m a comic book fan, wannabe writer, politics buff and New Yorker. I don’t actually follow baseball. In the Estonian language, “Mets” simply means forest, or lousy sports team. Currently, I’m writing a few comic books about my grandparents’ experiences in Soviet Estonia for Grayhaven comics. You can email me at mistermets@gmail.com
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