Weekend link dump for December 28

It’s almost the year 2015, but where are the hoverboards? We were promised hoverboards!

Mythbusters meets The Simpsons.

“Researchers are unsure why whales have suddenly chosen to inhabit the city, though they posit it has something to do either with an increase in available food, or the high cost of rent forcing them from more desirable parts of the ocean.”

Don’t take medical advice from doctors on TV.

Know your cold medicines.

“If and when we finally encounter aliens, they probably won’t look like little green men, or spiny insectoids. It’s likely they won’t be biological creatures at all, but rather, advanced robots that outstrip our intelligence in every conceivable way.”

“At first glance it would seem that the only way to do that would be through some sort of self-deception. Some part of me knows that the presents come from a supply chain stretching back to China, so if I want to believe they come from a jolly old elf, I need to lie to myself. I could perhaps use some combination of meditation techniques and psychoactive drugs to induce Santa belief.”

Minnesota > Wisconsin.

There’s not a whole lot we can do to retaliate against North Korea.

All five seasons of “Pee-Wee’s Playhouse” are now available for streaming on Netflix. Take whatever action you deem appropriate.

What Conor Friedersdorf says. Also, what Kareem Abdul-Jabbar says.

My hometown distinguishes itself again. That’s unfortunately not a compliment.

The NHL has gone carbon neutral, because you need ice to play hockey.

Script Notes on The Birth of Jesus. The standard beverage warning applies.

RIP, Joe Cocker, rock singer best known for his rendition of the Beatles’ “With a Little Help From My Friends”.

“If it’s already 2015, then that means within just four years — during the current term of U.S. senators elected last month — replicants will roam the streets of a rain-soaked dystopian Los Angeles (Blade Runner), the most popular TV show in the world will be The Running Man, and an electromagnetic pulse will turn the Pacific Northwest into a militarized police state patrolled by flying drones (Dark Angel). Those stories were all set in 2019.” And don’t forget about the hoverboards, either. We’re going to need them.

“The trouble for Republican rhetoricians is that by the party’s own standards, Obama is succeeding beautifully. They established the GOP benchmarks and now the Democratic president is the one meeting, and in some cases exceeding, the Republicans’ goals.”

Time to remember the worst op-ed in recent history. And that’s saying something.

“In any case, now I know what I want for Christmas: A country that doesn’t spin into a damn tizzy over every little thing. From Ebola to ISIS to the Sony hack, you’d think we were all at risk of losing our lives to outside forces every time we step off our front porches.”

Rudy Giuliani is a terrible human being. In case you needed a reminder of that.

Five things President Obama can do to keep environmentalists happy in 2015.

The Into the Woods movie we might have had in a different world.

“You’ll never hear this on Fox News, but 2014 was a year in which the federal government, in particular, showed that it can do some important things very well if it wants to.”

“Yet anyone who bought gold, silver, or oil after Obama’s re-election must feel, today, like the victim of a mugging.”

Jeb Bush’s Obamacare problem. (Also his “making big profits with bad-acting financial firms then selling off and hoping no one notices” problem.)

How the Yankees landed Babe Ruth 95 years ago.

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