The Hub Sheet – Dec 21, 2015: Magnetars, Audits, and an Oxford Comma

Mr. English on the aftermath of the CNN GOP debate. The Salt Lake Tribune’s Tommy Burr found the Utah Christmas decoration at the White House today. That time Europe air-dropped vaccine-laden chicken heads to fight rabies in foxes. Randy O’Hara says the Utah Republican Party has a communication problem. A list of records Star Wars: The Force Awakens has already broken. Mero Moment: Blessed are the peacemakers… and they fight. Least popular baby names 1880-1932. Hillary Clinton wants a “Manhattan-like” project on beating encryption to fight terrorism and that should scare you…

The Hub Sheet – Dec 12, 2015: Pot, Public Records, and Knitting for Peace

In a letter, Utah GOP Chair James Evans spells out legal basis for continued SB54 challenge. Is it headed to the Supreme Court? Holly Richardson enters Senate 14 race, calls for leaders seeking “solutions, not soundbites.” A 91-year-old Idaho Falls woman knitted gifts for her Muslim doctor after watching an interview with Trump. Her story is going viral. Philosophical musings on encyclopedias as time capsules. Paul Mero’s Mero Moment: “Senator Madsen’s Pot Bill.” Why is Apple is abandoning functional design for beauty? FEC wants to add John Swallow to campaign finance violations…

How is Trump possible?

How is this guy still in this race? Somewhere at the RNC, there is an entire office full of people bleeding from their ears and eyes, asking that same question. The Hillary camp — most likely aware Trump is unlikely to be the eventual GOP nominee — are still working hard to build a narrative that Trump = the GOP, and the longer Trump sits atop the polls, the more credible that narrative becomes. But the answer to the question is pretty simple. Base voters, polls, and daily media news…

The Hub Sheet – Dec 5, 2015: Apocalypse Pigs and Asset Forfeiture

Rep. Craig Hall: Time for justice court judges to be “licensed to practice law.” Inside the wild world of Japan’s brake-free bicycle racing. This Week in Nothing To See Here: UTA reverses contract stance for Swiss bidder after Switzerland trip because sure, why not? Sen. Hillyard: T’was the night before revenue announcements, and all through the House (and Senate)… Inside Grouse Creek, one of Utah’s most rural schools. How winning effects revenue in college sports. Two takes: American Conservative calls unrestricted access to deadly weapons is profoundly unconservative, and David Rogers counters,…

The Hub Sheet – Nov 21, 2015: RINOs, Lab Accidents, and a MacGyver Thanksgiving

SB54 latest: Lt. Governor Spencer Cox extends an olive branch GOP chair James Evans, and responds to questions from Sen. Todd Weiler. New US Census Bureau data shows 120 different languages spoken in Salt Lake County homes. DIY alarm clocks. Pyrah on the medicinal mare-ju-wanna bills, Syrian refugees, and UTA’s continued struggles with that whole public image thing. Huzzah, Will Robinson! Netflix is rebooting Lost in Space. Mero Moment: If I’m being called a RINO or liberal, folks, the freedom movement in Utah has some serious problems. We’re always just one lab accident…

The Hub Sheet – Nov 14, 2015: Commas, kangaroo gas, and the art of leadership

Why the best response to the attacks in Paris may be to take in even more refugees. Pyrah cheers John Pearce for Utah’s Supreme Court (despite his lack of goatee), and says the Guv should be more charitable with his black-tie gala money haul. A Stanford study found students in online K-12 charters are learning far less than students in public schools. Sen. Orrin Hatch, and his close ties to pharmaceutical companies, have become an unlikely impediment to the TPP trade deal. Data journalism and drugs: Narcodata aims to contextualize Mexico’s organized crime…

Midgets and Possums

If you’re a regular reader here, you probably use the term clickbait in the pejorative sense, like a dirty word. But if you’re reading this, you clicked. The title comes from an actual headline I clicked on this morning. Couple calls 911 to report midgets, possums jumping out of refrigerator The article itself has little value. No one needed to know this information. No one’s quality of life, safety, or knowledge of their community or world were increased by the story. It’s callous in its exploitation of the tragic of many people…

Putting in perspective Utah’s D- ranking from the Center for Public Integrity

The Center for Public Integrity’s integrity ranking of states, deservedly, is getting a lot of attention nationwide. CPI has a reputation for careful and thorough investigation, and earned a Pulitzer Prize in 2014 for it. That is to say, their work is worth noting. So, what should we take away from Utah’s D- grade in the report? When it comes to reports of this type, it’s important to remember they can be subjective. “Integrity” in the areas studied can mean different things to different “good government” advocates. For example, the CPI…

Taxing by the mile, not the gallon

Despite recent legislative changes to gas tax transportation funding in Utah, the problems with this once reliable revenue stream will only continue. Pacing with inflation (or lack thereof), more efficient vehicles and hybrids, are only part of the challenge. In response, even more progressive states like Massachusetts and Washington are considering a regressive idea: Taxing by the mile. And Oregon is on it. From Pew’s Stateline Daily: SALEM, Oregon—Evan Burroughs plopped into his 1996 Subaru Outback and pointed to a green plastic box tucked below the steering column. It blinked…

The Hub Sheet – Nov 7, 2015: Honest press releases, quacks, and a six hour work day

UTA’s reputation held Prop 1 up in Utah’s two largest counties. Dan wonders what, or who, it would take to improve it. State senator Al Jackson is stepping down. Sweden is moving to a 6 hour work-day to improve productivity and quality of life. New Hub Feature: Honest Press Releases. Re-imagining Count My Vote and Utah GOP statements on the SB54 ruling. Study: 9 out of 10 websites leak your personal data to third parties. Video: State Data Coordinator Drew Mingl spoke Saturday at Utah’s first intercollegiate hackathon at Utah State…