January 18, 2022

The commentariat’s hair is on fire over the seeming failure of President Biden, his administration, and his Democratic party, with polls showing dismal approval ratings.

What we’re really seeing is the worsening systemic failure of America’s body politic and civic culture, long in the making, but accelerating…

January 15, 2022

The word “noise” has a special meaning in fields like statistics. Referring to all the reasons why some result deviates from the ideal; like an incorrect prediction. It’s the concept of distinguishing noise from signal.

When people are convicted of identical crimes, with similar backgrounds and circumstances…

January 11, 2022

Nobody is a better advertisement for atheism than Trump.

A man many evangelicals view, despite all his demerits, as God’s instrument for achieving their triumph. That’s how they justify backing such a person. But it’s actually ruinous for the religion they profess to serve.

So argues Jennifer…

January 8, 2022

Half listening to the radio — some environment report — I heard the word “fishmeal.” And my brain popped out, “Call me Fishmeal.”

For my readers from Mars, there was a famous novel, written by Herman Melville (who lived in my town of Albany, NY), titled Moby…

January 5, 2022

The Catilinarian Conspiracy was a notorious episode in Roman history.

Rome’s (probably mythical) founding king, in 753 BC, was Romulus — who with his brother Remus had been suckled by a she-wolf. …

January 1, 2022

Kate, a grad student working with astronomer Randall, discovers a new comet. Will hit Earth in six months. Twice as big as the asteroid that wiped out the dinosaurs.

That’s the start of the recent Netflix film Don’t Look Up. I wonder if it confuses comets and…

December 28, 2021

After their December 7 video call, President Biden said Putin got the message “loud and clear” that invading Ukraine (again) would incur a big price.

The actual message: the price would be tolerable.

Economic sanctions? Pah! Putin doesn’t give a turd about that. He’d care about a…

Frank S. Robinson

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