Archive for the ‘Cool Link’ Category

Do you know who your state legislator is?

Monday, November 3rd, 2014

Last night, John Oliver’s “Last Week Tonight” did a piece on state legislatures. If I could embed YouTube clips into my research papers, I would, but for now I will use

Last Week Tonight actually emailed me asking for some statistics. None were directly used in the piece, however the facts that no one runs against incumbent legislators; no one knows who their legislator is; and legislatures pass considerably more bills than Congress make appearances in Chapters 2, 3, and 4 of the dissertation. Unfortunately, my email exchanges with Last week Tonight trailed off. If they would have continued, I would have suggested this clip

On a short note, I will try to update more frequently now that life has settled. As many readers likely know, it has been an interesting two years for Steve – who is finally a Billiken.

State Leg Tid Bits

Friday, April 8th, 2011

Its been a while since a state leg tid bit, so here are two…

One, did you know legislators strategically use prisons in redistricting. I actually find this extraordinarily clever. See here for more.

Second, the Oregon State Legislature:

Do you think a Harry Reid-John Boehner rendition of Rebecca Black’s Friday would prevent the shutdown? It would be hard though to sneak in “gotta have my cereal” into the congressional record. The “laboratories of democracy” should get on this.

Happy Birthday

Saturday, August 21st, 2010 is 5 years old today.  There have been 175 posts over that time.  Here are some of the highlights:

For some stats (since August 2006, not ’05.  Note, most people seem to read through Facebook)

Thanks for reading folks!

    Also from Victoria Johnson

    Monday, March 1st, 2010

    Thursday, February 25th, 2010

    Last time I was in DC, my friend Vicky told me about how part of her job is to work with a database of street names. In her day to day work, she finds interesting ones like the one below.

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    She emails and GChats these to friends. I suggested she make a blog about it. I offered to set her up with a domain name,, and she has started posting some her finds. Below is my favorite so far. When driving around here: Do not pass Go. Do not collect $200.

    View Larger Map

    Random Thoughts from People Our Age…

    Tuesday, August 25th, 2009

    Well, a little older than our age.  This e-mail forward turned message board post on The Lounge.   It has some interesting little thoughts, here are a few of my favorites.  Fuller list after the jump.

    • Have you ever been walking down the street and realized that you’re going in the complete opposite direction of where you are supposed to be going? But instead of just turning a 180 and walking back in the direction from which you came, you have to first do something like check your watch or phone or make a grand arm gesture and mutter to yourself to ensure that no one in the surrounding area thinks you’re crazy by randomly switching directions on the sidewalk.
    • Do you remember when you were a kid, playing Nintendo and it wouldn’t work? You take the cartridge out, blow in it and that would magically fix the problem. Every kid in America did that, but how did we all know how to fix the problem? There was no internet or message boards or FAQ’s. We just figured it out. Today’s kids are soft.
    • I would rather try to carry 10 grocery bags in each hand than take 2 trips to bring my groceries in.


    Interesting tid bits…

    Tuesday, August 4th, 2009

    Learned a few things today

    • “If Verizon’s 70 million customers leave or check messages twice a weekday, Verizon rakes in about $620 million a year.” – From NYTimes via Matt
    • “the creation of the modern police force came about in london following the creation of mass-produced cheap gin, which produced so much violence in the streets and homes that a professional force to keep order had to be created.” – via List Serve
    • 1/8 of all APSR, AJPS, and JOP (political science journals) articles misuse the term multivariate regression – via Grad Student Friend

    Interesting little nuggets of knowledge…