TV Networks Can Live On — By Taking Themselves Off the Air

CES: CBS Keynote: Leslie Moonves

‘Les Moonves, the CEO of CBS, the country’s most powerful TV broadcaster, is threatening to take his network off the air. And that’s not such a bad idea.

On Tuesday, Moonves told CBS-owned CNet that his TV network could move to an internet direct-subscription model if the U.S. Supreme Court rules in favor of Aereo, the service that lets you grab TV airwaves with a personal antenna for viewing on your PC, tablet, or phone…

[T]he case for an all-subscription model makes a surprising amount of sense  – especially when you consider that paying a la carte for what you watch is TV’s inevitable future. By going all-subscription now, the big networks would have a chance to define that future rather than becoming its victims.’ (

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Bombogenesis, the Most Extreme Weather This Winter

‘Move over, thundersleet and frost quake and all you other weird winter weather names. The undisputed, undefeated heavyweight champion of the climate-changed world is: bombogenesis!

This delicious buzzword, which is a portmanteau of “bomb cyclogenesis” and refers to the sudden intensification of storms after a rapid drop in atmospheric pressure, has been tumbling off lips this polar vortex winter. In the latest Science Graphic of the Week, you can see why.’ (Wired Science).

Paul Ryan’s worthless attempt to save face: Why he’s still an overrated fraud

‘Beltway writers have recently tried to outdo themselves with breathless profiles of a “new” Paul Ryan, deeply concerned about the poor. I’ve warned repeatedly that Ryan’s views on poverty are just warmed-over Reaganism, and now we have proof. McKay Coppins’ piece “Paul Ryan Finds God” should have revealed that his God is no longer Ayn Rand but Charles Murray, the man who put a patina of (flawed) social science on Reagan’s lyrical lie, “We fought a war on poverty, and poverty won.”

But let me explain all of what it means to cite Charles Murray in 2014. Murray is so toxic that Ryan’s shout-out must be unpacked. First, Rep. Barbara Lee is absolutely right: Ryan’s comments about “inner city” men who are “not even thinking about working or learning the value and the culture of work” are, in fact, “a thinly veiled racial attack,” in the congresswoman’s words. “Let’s be clear, when Mr. Ryan says ‘inner city,’ when he says, ‘culture,’ these are simply code words for what he really means: ‘black.’” ‘ (

Rare mutant redwood to be chopped down to make way for railroad

A branch from an 'albino' Sequoia sempervirens...

“An extremely rare albino chimero coast redwood tree is growing in the small Sonoma County town of Cotati. Federal regulators say the tree must be chopped down because the genetically mutated redwood is too close to a proposed set of new railroad tracks. Preservationists are hoping to raise public awareness and save the tree. The tree is believed to be one of fewer than 10 albino chimero redwood trees in the world.” — Mark Frauenfelder (Boing Boing)

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Nuclear crisis at Fukushima continues to unfold

‘Miles O’Brien, science correspondent for PBS NewsHour, has produced a series of three must-see investigative reports revisiting the Fukushima nuclear crisis in Japan. His stories explore how the radiation leaks triggered by the earthquake and tsunami are continuing to affect life there, and beyond.’ — Xeni Jardin (Boing Boing). Xeni, who is Miles O’Brien’s significant other, ends her post by letting us know that Miles recently suspended his reporting career after he lost his left arm in an accident while on assignment in the Philippines, but that he is healing well.