Maurice Sendak

I was tempted to not watch Stephen Colbert interview children’s book author Maurice Sendak, thinking it would not be interesting. I was wrong. Sendak turns out to be a funny and feisty guy, one of the few who can match wits with Colbert.

(To get hints on how to view clips on The Daily Show and The Colbert Report outside the US, please see this earlier post.)

Part 1 was shown on January 24, 2012.

Part 2 was shown on January 25, 2012.

Elizabeth Warren on The Daily Show

The candidate for US Senate from Massachusetts seems to have passion and a willingness to take on the big financial interests that are working against the poor and the middle class. While the US Senate has become a largely ineffective body, she may still be able to use it as a platform to articulate a point of view that is currently with little voice in Congress.

Of course, I have been disillusioned before by many candidates who [Read more…]

An interesting tax tidbit about Romney

Large gifts given to others are taxable. There are some loopholes. For example, a parent can give up to $10,000 per year to a child without incurring gift taxes. But if you have income that can be classified as ‘carried interest’, then you can give huge gifts to your children without incurring any tax whatsoever.

Romney’s tax returns reveal that he gave $100 million to his children using this loophole, that is available only to the wealthy whose income is from investments.

Can religion survive without all the hocus-pocus?

Scientists and atheists tend to be naturalists. Owen Flanagan, a professor of philosophy at Duke University, has written an article titled Buddhism Without the Hocus-Pocus in a recent issue of The Chronicle of Higher Education (January 13, 2012, page B4, unfortunately behind a subscription wall) which provides as good a definition of naturalism as any.

Naturalism comes in many varieties, but [Read more…]