My Founding Father is better than yours

File under amusing: the debate team of Hamilton College challenged UVA’s Washingotn and Jefferson Societies to a debate over whose Founding Father was coolest.


Knowing a few graduated members of the Jeff and the Wash, all I can say is, I hope the Hamilton team is prepared to eat crow. And of course, to drink like fish, since they will undoubtedly be treated to a spectacular display of Virginia hospitality.

But one does wonder where the Hamilton College team expect to find their points of superiority, given that their founding father was allergic to democracy. And who are they calling “plump” anyway? I am especially tempted to speculate about the rent paid by the “tenants of rhetoric” [sic], but we’ll let it slide.

QTN™: Rogue Imperial India Pale Ale

Tonight’s Quick Tasting Note regards the Imperial India Pale Ale from Rogue Ales Brewery. A beer in a big 750 ml ceramic bottle with a flip-top stopper, it’s a 9.5% ABV hoppy monster. Hoppy monster in that the hops are so monstrous that the malt almost can’t catch up. The trick with a beer like this is in the balance between hops, malt, and alcohol, and this one clearly seeks to balance out the hops and the alcohol with some neglect for the malt. That said, it’s a really interesting beer: bracing, citrusy, floral, strong. Good match for a plate of bratwurst with mustard.

This, like the Drie Fontainen Oude Gueuze, came from Warehouse Wine and Spirits in Framingham. Their beer selection may not be as wide as Downtown Wine and Spirits in Somerville, but they have the advantage of being near my office and the exceptional things they have are pretty darned exceptional.

Diebold: Why aren’t you content to be assimilated?

Boston Globe: Voting device pact at issue. The municipal election in Arlington today raised this article to my attention. Voting machines by AutoMARK, which use a touchscreen to produce a paper ballot as part of a disabled voter assistance measure, were in use in some precincts in Arlington today. And Diebold would have liked to stop them: they’ve filed suit against the state for choosing the wrong product.

Yes, seriously.

I hope that AutoMARK’s machines passed some of the tests that Diebold’s have failed, such as not being able to be opened using an ordinary file cabinet key and not being able to be arbitrarily manipulated to rig an election. But even if that level of testing hasn’t been conducted, the premise of the suit is pretty hysterical. After all, why wouldn’t one want to purchase insecure, hackable voting machines that don’t leave a paper trail?