Friday, June 14, 2013

What the Left Touts as Progress Is Really Regression to the Past

Writing about Libertarianism over at the National Review, Jonah Goldberg makes the following very good point about the Left and statism:

It’s a little bizarre how the Left has always conflated statism with modernity and progress. The idea that rulers — be they chieftains, kings, priests, politburos, or wonkish bureaucrats — are enlightened or smart enough to tell others how to live is older than the written word. And the idea that someone stronger, with better weapons, has the right to take what is yours predates man’s discovery of fire by millennia. And yet, we’re always told that the latest rationalization for increased state power is the “wave of the future.”

That phrase, “the wave of the future,” became famous thanks to a 1940 essay by Anne Morrow Lindbergh. She argued that the time of liberal democratic capitalism was drawing to a close and the smart money was on statism of one flavor or another — fascism, Communism, socialism, etc. What was lost on her, and millions of others, was that this wasn’t progress toward the new, but regression to the past. These “waves of the future” were simply gussied-up tribalisms, anachronisms made gaudy with the trappings of modernity, like a gibbon in a spacesuit.

Read the whole thing. 

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Thursday, June 13, 2013

The Solution to the Problem of Poor Smartphone Battery Life

Everyone who owns a smartphone knows that if they have one shortcoming in common, it’s battery life or, actually, the lack thereof. You’re lucky to get a full day’s use out of it with even moderate useage.

I just found a very handy device at Amazon that provides nearly the perfect solution for this problem It is the Yubi Power YP520A external battery charger, which is actually a battery itself. It stores up to 5600 mAh of power and has a short cable with adapters for mini and micro USB and Apple. Just plug it into your phone and it will recharge it. It’s compact enough to slip into your pocket and frees you from having to tether yourself to a wall outlet, if you can even find one.  I gave mine a quick test after it was delivered the other day, after first fully charging it up off the USB port of my laptop, and found that it took my phone from about 45% to 75% power in about two hours. I haven’t tested it to full charge yet and will report back if I get around to it any time soon. The best thing was that I could still carry my phone around with me while it was charging. I carry it in a case on my belt (Yes, I know, I’m a nerd). I just put the phone in the case USB port down (the case is partly open at the bottom), plugged the ~9” cable from the charger in and dropped it into my pocket.

There is also an 8400 mAh model, the YP840A that can recharge two devices at once:

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