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Steven L. Taylor
About Steven L. Taylor
Steven L. Taylor is a Professor of Political Science and a College of Arts and Sciences Dean. His main areas of expertise include parties, elections, and the institutional design of democracies. His most recent book is the co-authored A Different Democracy: American Government in a 31-Country Perspective. He earned his Ph.D. from the University of Texas and his BA from the University of California, Irvine. He has been blogging since 2003 (originally at the now defunct Poliblog). Follow Steven on Twitter

Comments

  1. DK says:

    American Airlines faces a discrimination suit after removing 8 Black men from flight (NPR)

    …The eight men did not know each other and were not seated together on the flight.

    According to the lawsuit, an American Airlines representative approached each of the eight men and told them to leave the plane and return to the gate in order to be rebooked.

    “In fact, once they reached the jet bridge, they saw that several other Black men were also being removed from the plane. In fact, it appeared to Plaintiffs that American had ordered all of the Black male passengers on Flight 832 off the plane,” the lawsuit says.

    Once all eight men were off the plane, they eventually discovered the reason behind their removal — an employee told the men someone on the plane complained about body odor…

    All eight men were eventually allowed back on the plane nearly an hour after the airline determined there were no available flights going to JFK airport that evening.

    “Plaintiffs then had to reboard the plane and endure the stares of the largely white passengers who viewed them as the cause of the substantial delay. They suffered during the entire flight home, and the entire incident was traumatic, upsetting, scary, humiliating, and degrading,” the lawsuit reads.

    Bonkers!

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  2. Franklin says:

    @DK: Even besides the ridiculousness of removing all black men because one of them has body odor, I guess I didn’t know we removed passengers for having body odor? Is there some smelling device with a scientifically determined threshold stink level?

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  3. DrDaveT says:

    We are now at 444 consecutive days of new record high sea surface temperature for the date. No wonder they think it’s going to be a crazy hurricane season…

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  4. DeD says:

    I know I’m always late to the party, but did y’all know this?

    https://www.nytimes.com/2022/11/01/style/usha-jd-vance-ohio.html?unlocked_article_code=1.wE0.tEh4.tLZF8tGr18O6&smid=url-share

    So, either Mrs. Vance is a real-life Dame Vaako, or there’s some real dissonance going on in that household.

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  5. Kathy says:

    As per one of my old quips, TIME should really name Orangefuhrer Convict of the Year.

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  6. DeD says:

    @DK:

    Hahaha! Remember when White people wanted Black men on airplanes to fight potential terrorists mid flight after 9/11? The joke’s on us, I guess.

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  7. Kathy says:

    @DK:

    Believe it or not, that’s only the second most baffling thing to happen in aviation this week.

    The most baffling, was a fatal accident at Schiphol, where someone was killed when they fell or walked into a jet engine. None of the reports mention how this happened.

    The third most baffling was a Spirit flight out of the Caribbean, that returned to the airport shortly after. In itself not remarkable, but on the short way back, the crew prepared the passengers for a “water landing.” So far, no explanation has been given, beyond passengers reporting the pilot mentioned a “drop in pressure.”

    Neither of these three cases make any logical sense.

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  8. DK says:

    @DeD: I think the joke’s on American Airlines’s insurers, because these fellas finna get a nice, fat check.

    I would endure a few hours of race-based humiliation for a millions-dollar payout, ngl.

    @Kathy:

    The most baffling, was a fatal accident at Schiphol, where someone was killed when they fell or walked into a jet engine. None of the reports mention how this happened.

    Based on my experiences traveling through Europe post-pandemic, maybe aggravation with or disorientation from the queues at AMS?

    Was too horrified to read past that headline yesterday. Shudder.

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  9. DeD says:

    @DK:
    I suppose. I mean, it’s not like it would be the first time. Might as well get paid for it.

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  10. gVOR10 says:

    @DeD Dissonance? J. D. is an ambitious, lying, sack of spit. His perfect helpmate found him at the ambitious lying sack of spit academy. They formed a merger made in heaven and subsequently joined the political team most likely to win elections in Ohio. They likely spend candlelit dinners plotting what ideology will sell best with the Ohio rubes. There’s no reason to think J. D. believes any of the crap he says. Or her.

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  11. Kathy says:

    @DK:

    Such headlines horrify me, too. All too often, my curiosity overcomes the horror.

    I searched again just now, and the NL Times claims it was a suicide. This is no less horrifying, but it does make sense.

    If it’s true.

    As to the Spirit flight, still no new info. I’m assuming the “pressure drop,” if that was the reason, might be something related to the engines, specifically both engines at once. Say low oil pressure, or low fuel pressure.

    The first would indicate a potential fatal malfunction on both engines. The second either a fuel pump problem, again on both engines, or a major fuel leak.

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  12. Kathy says:

    Well, Copilot admitted to not knowing something:

    I’m sorry, but I couldn’t find any specific information about a NASA administrator or official requesting that a flyby of Pluto not use a nuclear power source.

    This was a relatively minor bit in the Casing New Horizons book. I forgot who’d wanted to send a probe all the way to f***g Pluto without a nuclear power source (which would effectively be no power source at all).

    So, this AI, at least, can admit it failed to find something.

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  13. DeD says:
  14. Matt says:

    @Kathy: There’s quite a few pressures involved in a modern jet engine. Oil pressure would be the most concerning as oil both lubricates and cools modern jet engines (along with fuel).

    Pretty sure the A320 has 6 fuel pumps. So if they were having fuel pressure problems then there were some very serious issues.

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  15. Kathy says:

    @Matt:

    And there’s a lot of redundancy in many systems, too.

    This is why I find such fragmentary reports infuriating. Some comments in the blogs* assumed a drop in cabin pressure. But the flight was at a low altitude still when the diversion happened. And no one would think “let’s ditch the plane” faced with the reasonable alternative to flying at 10,000 ft to the very nearby airport with more than a sufficiency of fuel.

    Also, I can’t think of many reasons to ditch the plane, or land it on flat terrain far from the airport, other than a failure of all engines. Just about anything else that would impede flight at all, would also probably destroy the plane.

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  16. DK says:

    @DeD:

    I guess he’s going to try to retain his Senate seat after all…

    Apparently, Schumer and the Dem leaders have been stroking and stoking his ego, begging him to run again. It’s good news.

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  17. Franklin says:

    @Kathy: I have a current interest in field & track events. There exist some standard and oddball running events all the way from 60m through the 1600m and 3200m (approximating one mile and two miles, although with some sanctioning bodies they might run a 1500m and 3000m), but then you don’t usually see anything until 5000 or 5k and beyond.

    But I asked Google one day for the 4800m record, seeing if there was a close approximation of three miles. The AI guessed I was talking about the 400m, but inserted the value from my question into the answer, something like, “the record for the 4800m is 43.03 seconds set by …”

    I’m not getting the same result today, instead it is guessing I am talking about the 4x800m relay but at least reporting that accurately. Ideally I think it should say, “I don’t know. Are you talking about ?”

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  18. Kathy says:

    @Franklin:

    Maybe Google’s AI is more pushy or more certain of itself.

    BTW, a rough calculation says someone ran at a speed of over 400 km/h. That’s a bit under 10% faster than the fastest Formula 1 car.

    That would impress me more than AI tricks 🙂

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  19. Franklin says:

    @Franklin: That last part was meant to be: “I don’t know. Are you talking about [it’s best guess]?”

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  20. Franklin says:

    @Kathy: Ha, indeed. At first I was a little surprised that there was a record for it, before realizing that it was impossible for any human I’ve heard of!

    (And an F1 car could go quite a bit faster in a straight line if they ditched the wings and adjusted the gearing 🙂

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  21. Kathy says:

    Today’s Linguistics joke:

    Regret: What you may feel after doing something stupid.

    Bregret: What you may feel after doing something monumentally stupid.

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  22. dazedandconfused says:

    @Kathy:
    A failure that caused the pilots to anticipate the possibility they might lose both engines is a weird one. Expect the airline to not be specific until the mechanics determine exactly what it was, and since it is a weird one, that could if not should take a few days. Maybe weeks.

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  23. Kathy says:

    @dazedandconfused:

    I kind of expect an NTSB investigation.

    BTW, I have been meaning to remind everyone the series finale of Discovery is out. I know the very strong feelings some have about it, so maybe they’ll be in the mood to celebrate.

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  24. CSK says:

    Marian Robinson, Michelle Obama’s mother, has died at 86. RIP.

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  25. dazedandconfused says:

    @Kathy: Yeah, but if I had to bet the NTSB will leave this up to the FAA, which is the entity that issues airworthiness directives. Generally speaking no crash no NTSB direct involvement.

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