Garth Brooks makes $500,000 profit on donation to hospital

Country music superstar Garth Brooks gave half a million dollars to an Oklahoma hospital. He later claimed that they promised to build a women’s center and name it after his late mother, but didn’t. So he sued to get his money back. The hospital showed evidence that the discussions had included a figure as high as $15 million, which makes more sense. Even in rural Oklahoma I doubt you can build much for $500,000. But Brooks testified as to his recollections and the jury awarded him his money back plus $500,000 in punitive damages. BITE ME, Brooks.

Newt Gingrich’s troublesome lack of prudence

I ran across a nice analysis of the Newt by Michael Gerson in the Washington Post. Gerson says that the Newt excels at diagnosis of problems in the U.S., but “regularly gets into trouble when moving from analysis to prescription.” Here are some highlights:

So Gingrich diagnoses the genuine threat of terrorism and radical Islam. Then he calls for a federal law against sharia, which would address a nonexistent crisis while stigmatizing an entire faith.

He makes a strong case for early work experience in low-income communities. Then he goes further to dismiss child labor laws as “truly stupid” and urges the employment of students as assistant janitors.

Gingrich acknowledges the problem of climate change — or at least he once did. But he proposed to combat it through geoengineering — the risky manipulation of the planet’s environment by pumping nitrogen into the oceans or deflecting the sun’s rays with vast mirrors.


Sen. Rand Paul ‘detained’ by TSA for refusing full-body pat-down, dad tweets – NY Daily News

If the libertarian scion doesn’t want to get patted down, that’s fine by me. I think there ought to be two lines at the airport: “Libertarian” and “El Al security.” Passengers could choose which line they want to go on and airlines could choose which line or lines they wish to service. Most of the time, I’d choose the El Al security line, but if I were late, or wanted a thrill, or was feeling depressed, I might choose to go with the Libertarians..

Tabitha Stevens is full of it

The LA City Council is planning to require condoms in locally-produced porn films. But porn producer Tabitha Stevens is against the new ordinance, saying , “If you want to wear them, wear them. If you don’t, don’t. That’s up to the talent to decide. It shouldn’t be up to the government to decide.” Bull pizzle! The same article makes clear that the porn producers plan to leave the county if the law is enforced. Tabith Stevens can . . . ummm . . . ummm . . .

Bloomberg wants to get rid of bad teachers. But will it make a difference?

You’d think that getting rid of bad teachers would improve the quality of education. So I decided to take five right-to-work states (where presumably the teachers aren’t unionized) to see how their kids do on the SATs.

I selected five states from the National Right to Work website. One east, one west, one north, one south and one central. I then looked up their SAT rankings at the Commonwealth Foundation.

Here’s what I found:
VA — 32
NV — 43
ND — 7
TX — 47
KS — 8

(Note that the lower the number, the higher the ranking.)

A liberal might expect that RTW states would rank low on SATs. And a conservative might expect them to rank high. But it appears that some RTW states are high and some low. If you average the rankings, you get 27. So the average SAT ranking for a RTW state is right in the middle of the country as a whole. From which I conclude that hiring teachers “at will” makes no difference at all.

Now if my faithful reader wishes to do a more rigorous analysis, I’d like to see the results.