* Finally, my moment has arrived: Smuggling LEGO is the new smuggling diamonds.
* Thanks to energy drilling operations, northern New Mexico is now covered by “a permanent, Delaware-sized methane cloud.”
* Serial, episode thirteen: 1, 2, 3 coming today or tomorrow I think. A sort-of out-there blog post on what it could all mean: The Serial Podcast: The Possible Legal Implications of Jay’s Interview for Jay & Adnan.
* UI Chancellor Responds To Salaita Report. This is actually a fairly significant walk-back of Wise’s position — I think she’s actually more progressive on academic freedom than Cary Nelson now — though since she’s still pretending Salaita wasn’t actually hired it doesn’t do much good for him.
* Professors are teaching less while administrators proliferate. Let’s find out how all that tuition is being spent. Colleges Need a Business Productivity Audit. Of course the actual text of the article zeroes in on instruction first, which is not the source of the problem…
* It’s the original sin of college football, and you’ll never guess what it is. In Harbaugh hire, excessive pay would send wrong message. How one former coach perpetuated a cheating scheme that benefited hundreds of college athletes. Shut down middling college football programs and shift the money back to instruction.
* The arc of history is long, but: New Michigan Law Bars College Athletes From Unionizing.
* Another angle on the growing Title IX mess: Mothers of accused college rapists fight back.
* Brent Bellamy reviews Naomi Oreskes and Erik M. Conway’s The Collapse of Western Civilization.
* 538 profiles the best damn board game on the planet, Twilight Struggle.
* Really interesting idea from Bleeding Cool about what might be happening with Marvel’s sliding timescale. I could honestly see them doing this, or something like it, at least until they start getting some rights back.
* Seriously, though, sometimes you can’t just switch the skin tones and have the story turn out the same.
* Counterpoint: Black and African writers don’t need instructions from Ben Okri.
* I say teach the controversy: Kids and Jails, a Bad Combination.
* Sounds like the Afghanistan war has ended again. This is #3 or #4 at least, right?
* How to destroy a city: just build a highway.
* “Why should the legality of a sale of secrecy depend entirely upon who initiates the transaction? Why is bribery legal but blackmail not?”
* The labor movement should rally against police violence, whether police unions like it or not. I think we should let this whole work stoppage thing play out personally.
* Emails and Racist Chats Show How Cops and GOP Are Teaming Up to Undermine de Blasio. The headline actually undersells the severity of a story where they talk about planting drugs on his daughter.
* North Dakota to eliminate taxes because fracking fracking fracking forever fracking. What could go wrong?
* Real life Alien vs. Predator: Cuomo vs. the New York State Legislature.
But Cuomo has insisted he would agree to a pay hike only if the Legislature addressed a long series of criminal and ethical charges against many of its members by passing several reforms, such as a limit on outside incomes earned by lawmakers and a system of publicly financed campaigns.
The legislative leaders, however, responded that Cuomo was making demands he knew were unacceptable in a politically motivated effort to appear as a reformer because he’s under federal investigation for dismantling his anti-corruption Moreland Commission panel.
* Heartbreaking story of a trans teen’s suicide, based on a suicide note that went viral. Now go hug your kid.
A Few Goodmen: Surname-Sharing Economist Coauthors
ALLEN C. GOODMAN (Wayne State University)
JOSHUA GOODMAN (Harvard University)
LUCAS GOODMAN (University of Maryland)
SARENA GOODMAN (Federal Reserve Board)
We explore the phenomenon of coauthorship by economists who share a surname. Prior research has included at most three economist coauthors who share a surname. Ours is the first paper to have four economist coauthors who share a surname, as well as the first where such coauthors are unrelated by marriage, blood or current campus.
* Want to feel old? This Is What the Cast of Doug Looks Like Now.
* Austerity in everything: Science proves once-in-a-lifetime moments will just make you more depressed.
* And there’s more! You’re more likely to die on your birthday.
* “Deputies said the shooting appears accidental”: Idaho toddler shoots and kills his mother inside Walmart.
* Wake up, sheeple! Back to the Future predicted 9/11.