Half a Million Dollars in Debt, and Some People Want to Worry About Pens and Notepads: CNN tells us about a young family I wish were more unusual. Both young adults graduated medical school. Their first child is due any day now. They work “brutal hours for salaries that, on an hourly basis, work out to a little more than they could earn stocking the shelves at Costco.” And they have $500,000 in student loan debt — so far. But as I say, the people who want to “reform” health care are much more concerned with the pens and notepads that drug companies give to doctors.

Extra, Extra! Read All About it! Book store reinvents the book! Actually, the Amazon Kindle looks pretty cool.

That Makes Elmo Want to Sing the Cow Song. I grew up watching Sesame Street. And these people just don’t get it. Early Sesame Street — which by the way, packs a whole lot more actual education than the newer, sanitized, dumbed down for younger kids version on PBS today — is not about escaping into some happy place where numbers and letters dance. It’s about meeting kids where they are, admitting that sometimes things are not all rosy. It taught us that the world did not end at the next cross-street, that some people are just grouchy, and that milk comes from cows. Oh, and since milk is pasteurized, what the heck does it matter that “[c]ows are milked by plain old farmers, who use their unsanitary hands and fill one bucket at a time”?

Thankful for the Planet. Here’s 84 ways ordinary people can help the planet. Some of them even save you money.

The Social Security Debate that Wouldn’t Die. Heeeeeeeere’s Krugman. He would like to take a few minutes to refute just about every sentence about Social Security beginning with the phrase “Everybody knows that….”

Maybe They Should Call It USA ToDuh. USA Today tells us that many sex offenders are homeless, making it more difficult to track them. That’s the direct result of Megan’s Laws making it difficult for sex offenders who have served their prison terms to find housing (and avoid mob justice). Seriously, if these people are so dangerous we have to track them for the rest of their lives, put them in prison for the rest of their lives. In another story, USA Today tells us that hate crime was up 8% in 2006. Well, that couldn’t’ have anything to do with the various hatemongers telling us to fear people who are not like us: people who are Muslim; people who are gay; people who are Hispanic (and therefore implied illegal immigrants).

When There Are No Invaders, There Are No Insurgents Either. The British have left Basra, and violence is down. Imagine that.

This is a Bad Idea. Colorado wants to pass an amendment to the state Constitution giving legal rights to fertilized human eggs. It’s a bad idea. Unless, of course, you think that women are nothing more than a cardboard box. Oh, and never mind that it’s not even a pregnancy until implantation.

Political Discourse.  If you happen to live in Nevada, I have some links regarding our upcoming caucuses over here.

Too True.And you never find what you need in there.

Speaking of Now-Inappropriate TV I Watched as a Child. A link to an interview with Moe Howard of The Three Stooges.

And Last But Not Least. The BlogHers Act landing page for initiatives to improve maternal health worldwide is live and active.

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