Gongol.com Archives: 2012 Weekly Archives
Brian Gongol

Computers and the Internet The case for upgrading old computers to Windows 8

Computers and the Internet Look what happens when someone tries spam-texting others

Business and Finance Trading skills
Or...as it's done elsewhere...using money

The United States of America The youthful scribblings of the two men running for President today

Aviation News Israel says it's shot down a drone in its airspace

News Venezuela goes to the polls: Will Chavez stay?

News There's so much wrong with this, it cannot be fully fathomed
A collegiate athlete declares he's not at school to go to school

The United States of America Debate success appears to have propelled Mitt Romney's poll standings
He's way ahead amont military voters

Broadcasting Notes from the "Brian Gongol Show" on WHO Radio - October 7, 2012

Computers and the Internet A useful guide to Facebook photo dimensions

Broadcasting Radio show notes from September 30, 2012
Instead of politics or current events...a look at future events

Broadcasting Radio show notes from October 7, 2012
Listen to the second segment, a discussion about what would happen if we inverted Social Security and instead gave it to young people in a lump sum

Threats and Hazards A sad anniversary for America
On this date in 2002, the Supreme Court of the United States heard arguments in Eldred v. Ashcroft, a case challenging the 1998 Copyright Term Extension Act, which preposterously extends the length of copyright terms. The court upheld the law, which inhibits the production of good ideas.

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Business and Finance Interesting: Despite all the monetary expansion by the Federal Reserve, the money supply isn't changing radically
The "missing link" here seems to be explained by people slowing down the velocity of money.

Aviation News Why the intercom voice at the Des Moines airport has a British accent
But it certainly sounds out of place. The same voice at O'Hare has a vestigal Chicago accent, as it probably should.

Science and Technology Neil deGrasse Tyson on the magic of science

Science and Technology A watch that reads your phone for you

Threats and Hazards Why didn't the State Department do more to protect the Benghazi consulate?

News Winston Churchill's archives are now online

The United States of America Tonight's Vice Presidential debate features the largest age gap ever

The United States of America Why is there no Libertarian in the Presidential debates?
It's quite simple: America's electoral system is based on who can get the most votes, period -- not assigning representation in proportion to the total vote. The "first past the post" method means that our political factions have to assemble their coalitions before election day, not after. To get what you want in American politics, you have to choose a party to influence, establish a foothold there, and then get that party to victory on election day -- accepting the fact that, along the way, you're going to have to compromise with others within your own party in order to get their support so that you can win the election. More than anything, it's actually a system that will tend towards moderation (even if that seems out of place today), since the largest number of votes to be obtained is generally in the middle of the political spectrum -- so neither party can win in the natural duopoly by being particularly radical. But it has also tended to reward those who show up with something they want -- which is why many party activists sound a whole lot more "out there" than the average voter, and hence why all of the talking heads refer to how candidates have to run to the right or left in order to get the party nomination, then back to the center to win the election. We will only see a third party become a major force in America if and when one or both of the parties completely abandon the "big tent" philosophy in the name of purity (which could happen), or if a third party executes a brilliant campaign of starting at the very local level (city and county elections) and establishes a record strong enough to win state-level elections before going national. It's just not going to happen any other way. If Ross Perot couldn't get the Reform Party off the ground as one of the 20 richest people in America, and if Teddy Roosevelt couldn't do it as a wildly popular former President, it's not going to happen today just because the Green Party or Libertarian Party wants it. They either need to start winning elections on the local scale and prove that they're better in actual practice than the Republicans and Democrats, or they have to accept their place as interest groups within the two major parties. It just isn't going to happen any other way.

Threats and Hazards CBS News reporter Lara Logan says things in the Middle East are much, much worse than we think

Threats and Hazards An employee of the US embassy to Yemen has been assassinated

The United States of America So that's what's on those American flag pins
There's been something noticeably odd about the flag pins that Mitt Romney has been wearing for some time. Turns out, it's a Secret Service thing.

Broadcasting Transforming the WHO-TV news studio
A fun little time-lapse recording

Iowa Sioux City wants to become a little Hard Rock

Business and Finance What's the future of Jewel stores in Chicagoland?

Business and Finance Should we abandon "too big to fail"?

Business and Finance Economic Freedom of the World, 2012 edition

Agriculture USDA reiterates estimate: 140 bushels per acre of corn in Iowa
For a terrible drought year, that's not a bad output

Aviation News What's been learned from deliberately crashing an airplane

The United States of America Who's going to stop the national madness?
A 34-year-old writer builds the case against his 63-year-old father's generation for failures of many types -- especially economic ones. But who's going to bite the bullet and fix things?

News The Cubs chairman explains the team's long-term strategy
Looking at the long term sometimes causes discomfort in the short run

Business and Finance Nothing makes today look better than how bad yesterday looked
(Video) A compilation of local television commercials from the 1980s gives a glimpse into how much things have improved since then

Science and Technology 3D printing delivers a complete acoustic guitar

News Should the EU have won the Nobel Peace Prize?

Computers and the Internet Unmasking a notorious online troll

Business and Finance Applebee's as late-night club

Broadcasting "Eminence Front" by The Who was once used as a TV news intro song

Agriculture Thank technology for good crop yields
Despite a terrible drought, the Midwest is still going to have an acceptable harvest this year. Not great by a long shot, but not a calamity.

News Your Simpsons Myers-Briggs analogue