Archive for washington state

The Book Booth: Small Town Days Edition



The Book Booth is a weekly feature at The Political Carnival, relating news, notes, and reflections from the world of books and publishing. SeattleDan, along with his wife, SeattleTammy, are operators of both an on-line bookstore here, as well as a brick and mortar storefront mini-store in Hoquiam, WA at 706 Simpson Ave (Route 101 South). Both have been in the book business since shortly after the Creation, or close to 6000 years now.

The kids returned to school this week, after Labor Day. It seemed odd to see the younger ones playing in the school yard during lunch and the older ones walking home with their backpacks. Didn't summer just start? And today our small town celebrates its heritage of logging with a parade, competitions and fun for all. And it looks like the sun will be shining.

Logging is certainly not an easy job, and it can be very dangerous. But there are much worse jobs and Emily Temple at Flavorwire examined a few of the worst ones. (And for those of you who haven't read Orwell's Down and Out in London and Paris, check it out sometime. It has some great writing in it.)   Worst Jobs

Margaret Atwood made the above list with her The Handmaid's Tale. And she is keeping herself busy. She is currently working on a piece that will be sealed for the next 100 years and chances are very good that you and I will never read it.  Margaret Atwood Project

Atwood's novel also made this list from the Guardian about literary child-bearing. Reading it made me recall a long ago essay by Elizabeth Hardwick that argued Mary Shelley's Frankenstein was an allegory on childbirth. But Shelley didn't make this list. Literary Childbearing

So who was the most important writer of the 20th Century? James Joyce? William Faulkner? Not so fast, argues Jane Ciabattari of the BBC. Take a look at the Argentine writer Jorge Luis Borges first. H/T to Lucian!

Borges, like Joyce, never received the Nobel Prize for literature. This year's favorite, Haruki Murakami will have a new (and short) novel translated into English this December. NPR had this piece on it, and it looks to be good.  New Murakami Novel.

Ever want to sleep where the famous authors have slept? Here's your chance! Mashable has listed eight homes or apartments where you can book a room.  Sleep Where Famous Authors Slept.

In Big Town America, New York always seems to grab the literary cache. But the Windy City is no slouch. The Guardian recently listed some fine books about the Second City. Chicago, You're My Kind of Town!

Speaking of Frankenstein, as I was earlier, it seems there will be yet another film adaptation soon. And also Animal Farm as well as The Sound and the Fury. Shortlist has coming adaptations from classic novels here.

Some of the best adaptations in the noir genre were originally penned by one of the most neglected writers of the previous century, Jim Thompson. Watch The Grifters or The Getaway. Thompson himself was a very good screenwriter whose credits include Stanley Kubrick's The Killing and Paths of Glory. I love the man's novels and it is great to see them get republished by Mullholland Books.  Jim Thompson's Books

Finally who doesn't like a good literary tiff? The history of literature is replete with them. Heck, I think even Homer had a score to settle with some other epic poet. MentalFloss takes a look at a few here.  Famous Author Contretemps

I want to take a minute to take a minute to thank Laffy for her years of support and kindnesses to me and to SeattleTammy. She has been a good friend and I will certainly miss her around this place. I'm glad she's found a new home that will make it easier for her and I know she wont be a stranger. Thank you, my dear, from the both of us!

Have a glorious weekend. And please let us know what good books you are reading!


Blissful Bottom Line: Marijuana: Let the Colorado Green Rush Proceed



Written by guest contributor, "hardybear" of the wonderful Free Range Talk site:

The Rocky Mountain Legal Doobie Debut numbers are in -- and the pot of gold that was hoped for in Colorado's Green Rush did indeed appear at the end of the Recreational Use Revenue rainbow. A chillin' 34 million dollars (presumably much in highly-scented sacks of even colder cash) blew into the State of Colorado's coffers from the sales of marijuana -- sin-taxxed to the max -- in the virgin legalized retail month of January.

For a speedy gauge, the combined tax revenue sales of clothing, shoes and furniture scuppered in for the same period was just shy of double of them there cannabis tax cash millions! Washington state will soon make economic history when their own elevated pot revenues stream in to impress skeptical bean counters.

Bud Tender Dan Ericson, left, fills an order in Denver. LATimes image

Bud Tender Dan Ericson, left, fills an order in Denver. LATimes image

Where else are you going to come up with upwards of a million in legal revenues A DAY, 48 idiot (including many in Broke Ass territory) states that are still for all intents under Prohibition?

Colorado will be reinvesting a large share of their Mary Jane Monies into the best interests of a wildly needy population: their schoolchildren. Appears that these immodest sums will add up a tad faster than the mighty admirable Box Top$ For Education campaign. As far as good old capitalism goes, here's your sign of a bullish bud future: the First Family of Weed, featured on [msnbc's fair-haired new hope of a lad] 'Ronan Farrow Daily' on Tuesday.

It'd also be great to know that when the eldest nephew here in Vermont [which decriminalized down to a ticketed fine in 2013] wants to enjoy a skosh of some rad Alaskan Thunderfvck on the weekend, that it's safe to purchase and no one is going to end up in a jail cell because we Puritans were still glued to the urban myths and Regressive paranoia channels. Man.

Related wag o' the finger? Jerry Brown, WTF is up with the public mellow-harshing, mann?? And Mickey Hart just barely hailed Governor Moonbeam as a hero -- that's Dead Cred, mannn!?!

New York State, however,  is more than a bit behind the high times, Andrew Cuomo only recently gave the grand gubernatorial nod to medical, but having Rx dispensaries and growers in such a key NE state is a mega-win for the Cause. A wowed reporter over at Alternet was actually allowed on some ride-alongs with a high-end bud bike-delivery service that merrily brings ganja to your door in the Big Apple -- called Secret Fleet. The incoming supply pipeline is not optimal. For anybody.

The weed comes to New York on many modes of transportation. “It’s like prohibition,” Brian says. “You ever seen that show ‘Moonshiners’? It’s like that. They’re hiding it in VW vans or putting it in trucks and covering it in manure. Anything they can f**king think of.”


Raising Minimum Wage Doesn't Hurt Economy -- Ask Washington State



Whenever you need to test a theory, it's best to look at history and see if there's something you can learn from it. It seems Republicans haven't taken the time to do their homework. They just have categorically declared war on the working class stiffs who are stuck with minimum wage jobs. Saying"no" for them is easier than saying "why not?"

So what are the facts about raising the minimum wage and how will it hurt us -- as the GOP town criers warn us? Perhaps a look at Washington State which has the highest minimum wage in the country will shed some light.

Let's look at Bloomberg:

When Washington residents voted in 1998 to raise the state’s minimum wage and link it to the cost of living, opponents warned the measure would be a job-killer.

You may be wondering how that worked out. 1998 is over 15 years ago. That's surely enough time for the experiment to provide definitive results:

In the 15 years that followed, the state’s minimum wage climbed to $9.32 -- the highest in the country. Meanwhile job growth continued at an average 0.8 percent annual pace, 0.3 percentage point above the national rate. Payrolls at Washington’s restaurants and bars, portrayed as particularly vulnerable to higher wage costs, expanded by 21 percent. Poverty has trailed the U.S. level for at least seven years.

Whoa there, all you GOP Chicken Littles. The sky didn't fall in? Payrolls expanded as did job growth. Poverty has fallen. The economy of the state didn't collapse. Mass destruction and corruption didn't reign supreme? How could the Boehners, Cantors, and Paul Ryans of the world be so wrong? They're part of the Republican hate machine.

How else do you describe their refusal to pass unemployment insurance extensions while 2 million are refused aid? How else do you interpret the GOP Conservative stance on not extending citizenship to those already here but without proper papers? If it was good enough for Reagan, why not for them?

So let's let history, not Republican histrionics, rule the day. Boost the minimum wage and let's pass the extension of long-term unemployment benefits. It's time to yell at the mad men in the Republican Party who don't know what they're talking about.


Monday Links


SochiDisplacedHomeownerw396h264Sochi Olympic Winter Games at root of residents' housing woes

A Violinist's Triumph Is Ruined by Thieves

Not a headline, just an interesting article on the history and impact of the Grand Coulee Dam.
The Cost of the Grand Coulee Dam

You might want to rethink that 'The Bible is the Literal Truth thougt...
Christians Might Be Surprised to Find That Not God, But Men, Decided What They Would Believe

So where do you get water on Mars when you're thirsty? From the red dirt, of course.
Mars water surprise in Curiosity rover soil samples

Pussy Riot's Stars Tossed Out of Pussy Riot