Today’s Stuff to Read

Fascinating study of “The Geography of Gun Deaths.” Someone compared the rate of gun-related deaths (from all causes, including accidents) among the states and looked for correlations with other factors. It’s not surprising that there is a positive correlation between states with high gun death rates and states that voted for McCain in 2008, but it’s a stronger correlation than I would have guessed. The other strongest factors are high poverty rates, an economy dominated by blue-collar jobs, and lower levels of college graduates.

See also Paul Krugman, “A Tale of Two Moralities.” Basically, he says a “return to civility” isn’t possible as long as we are so sharply divided over the basic nature of government. The best we can hope for at the moment is an agreement that “both violence and any language hinting at the acceptability of violence are out of bounds.” That used to be the norm, but I don’t see us returning to that norm anytime soon.

Elsewhere — “Gateway Pundit” Hoft et al. are trying to make a controversy over President Obama’s announcement that Rep. Giffords had opened her eyes. I’m serious.

Update: Some Israelis are trying to stop the opening of a Buddhist center in Israel, because they think Budhism is idolotry.