The Census Bureau released new estimates today that show Illinois has slipped below Pennsylvania, and is now the 6th most populous state. Says Crains' Greg Hinz:
The bureau had no breakdown on what's responsible for the decrease. But recent political infighting likely didn't help, and the state's job growth has been half or less of the nation's in recent years. Also, the state is believed to be attracting far fewer immigrants than in the 1990s and 2000s, something that boosted the state's population then.
Illinois had surpassed Pennsylvania a couple of decades ago, but never was more than 200,000 or so ahead.
Some initial reaction from Democratic gubernatorial hopeful J.B. Pritzker, in a statement: "Just as Bruce Rauner finally admits that he purposefully created a crisis to ram through his special interest agenda, the U.S. Census Bureau confirmed that his damage is done. Rauner's damage drove Illinoisans out of this state, losing talent and wasting opportunities when we needed them most. This failed governor's only accomplishment is decimating our economy and forcing thousands to look for stability elsewhere."
Well, yes, Bruce Rauner may have contributed. But we're stuck with him for another year, so he may not be done hurting us.
I'm on a train, using my mobile phone to tether my laptop to the Intertubes. I know this is an old technology, and also the reason I have unlimited data on my mobile, but I still love this stuff.
Things I'm reading:
Now approaching...Highwood! And soon off to my meeting.
I'm under the weather today, probably owing to the two Messiah performances this weekend and all of Parker's troubles. So even though I'm taking it easy, I still have a queue of things to read:
I will now...nap.
Parker hasn't felt like himself for a couple of days now. Last night after our Messiah performance I had the delightful experience of cleaning up after him for the third time in one day.
This morning he seems a lot better. We had a normal walk with normal, ah, results, and he snarfed down his entire breakfast the way he usually does.
I still have one more Messiah performance today, so he'll have to be by himself for a few hours. I hope he's fine. Because I'm running out of Nature's Miracle, and don't even get me started on how the house smells.
The good news: After being off his food for two days, Parker seems to be feeling better. He ate a small breakfast and a small lunch, and we've just gotten back from a 25-minute walk that he seemed to enjoy.
The bad news: His food is shooting through him with a velocity I have not often seen, so I've gone through two rolls of paper towels just today.
I'm about to leave my house for several hours to perform Händel's Messiah (for, I believe, the 8th time), so Sir Poopsalot will be confined to a small area of the house that has tile floors.
Meanwhile, I'll have a fan running in my living room. In December. I just hope the temperature stays above freezing until I get back, or my gas bill will be insane.
As the Washington Post rounds up their biggest Pinocchios of 2017, they've encountered an unprecedented problem:
Usually, this is an easy task, as we sort through the craziest Four-Pinocchio claims on issues of substance made by members of both parties. But this is the era of Trump, and nothing is ever easy. If we were not careful, we’d end up with an all-Trump list.
After all, there has never been a serial exaggerator in recent American politics like the president. He not only consistently makes false claims but also repeats them, even though they have been proved wrong. He always insists he is right, no matter how little evidence he has for his claim or how easily his statement is debunked. Indeed, he doubles down when challenged.
When we last updated our database of false or misleading claims made by the president, the number stood at 1,628 after 298 days. That’s an average of 5.5 per day.
Given the profusion of Trump claims, in two cases we have wrapped some of his statements into all-around categories: flip-flops and taking all credit. Even so, he still ended up with six of the “biggest Pinocchios,” topping his 2016 record (when he received five.)
That makes their inclusion of a few Democrats seem even more like false equivalence, which is how we got here to begin with.
The first proto-blog post on braverman.org hit the Internet on 13 May 1998. (And it was a joke. Literally.) This is the 6,000th since then.
And every single one of them is here.
(The count of actual blog posts is now 5,804, starting from this site becoming an actual blog on 9 November 2005.)
Yesterday started with a performance on local television and ended with a three-hour rehearsal and midnight showing of Star Wars. I'd already planned to go into work late today, but Parker didn't eat dinner last night and he refused breakfast this morning, so I'm waiting to see if I can get him to the vet.
With that and other things up for grabs today, plus two more performances this weekend, posting might suffer a bit.
I've started the third book in Jeff VanderMeer's "Southern Reach" trilogy, so it'll be a couple of days before I come back to the Atlantic's long-form analysis "The Nationalist's Delusion."
Read both. They're not connected, but they're both good.
Via Bruce Schneier, an advisor to the project, Citizen Lab has created an online tool to help you stay safe online:
Security Planner is a custom security advice tool from Citizen Lab. Answer a few questions, and it gives you a few simple things you can do to improve your security. It's not meant to be comprehensive, but instead to give people things they can actually do to immediately improve their security. I don't see it replacing any of the good security guides out there, but instead augmenting them.
The advice is peer reviewed, and the team behind Security Planner is committed to keeping it up to date.
Some of the recommendations are simple: use Chrome; use https:// whenever it's available; use your computer's built-in encryption (BitLocker on Windows and FileVault on Mac). Some are a little more complex: use two-factor authentication; set up a password manager.
I recommend anyone who uses computers do a quick self-exam with the tool—especially if you aren't that experienced with security.