Be Clear: On how and why the government shut down last night.

Who Stays Home, Who Goes to Work: A graph of federal workers in the shutdown.

Other Nations Are Puzzled: "For most of the world, a government shutdown is very bad news - the result of revolution, invasion or disaster. Even in the middle of its ongoing civil war, the Syrian government has continued to pay its bills and workers' wages. That leaders of one of the most powerful nations on earth willingly provoked a crisis that suspends public services and decreases economic growth is astonishing to many."

What's That Google Doodle Today?: Oh, it celebrates Yosemite National Park, established on this day in 1890, un-visitable today thanks to the Republican Party. "Tourists will find every one of America’s national parks and monuments, from Yosemite to the Smithsonian to the Statue of Liberty, immediately closed,” President Obama said Monday night.

Calling Out Congress to the Troops: Obama's video message to the military. "You and your families deserve better than the disfunction we're seeing in Congress."

Meanwhile in Shangri-La: Amazon will hire 70,000 workers for the holiday season.

How Do You Map Clouds?: It's best to do it on a planet where they don't move much.

The Problem With Journalism Is This Guy: Chris Powell, managing editor of the Journal Inquirer, writes, "Indeed, newspapers still can sell themselves to traditional households — two-parent families involved with their children, schools, churches, sports, civic groups, and such. But newspapers cannot sell themselves to households headed by single women who have several children by different fathers, survive on welfare stipends, can hardly speak or read English, move every few months to cheat their landlords, barely know what town they're living in, and couldn't afford a newspaper subscription even if they could read." Golly, it's a good thing we've got Chris Powell to save us!

Survey of the American Jewish Population: One-third had a Christmas tree last year.

Sanctions: Hitting Iranians hard.

Nigerian Students in Russia: Pissed, retaliating, detained.

Campuswide Evacuation at Cal: Electrical explosion.

"I'm Just a Free Spirit Who Is Entirely Financially Dependent on Others": From every mountainside, let freedom reign.

Why Do Seagulls Like Parking Lots?: Because science. Also, Dave Segal likes parking lots.


Open Letter to Sapling Press,, and Any Seattle Store Stocking the Above Greeting Card Like the One I Went into This Weekend in Ballard: This greeting card is disturbingly racist. I realize we are part of a culture that declares this "hilarious" in an internet poll. Thank you for addressing that culture by not only stopping selling racist shit, but also informing your vendors when they supply you with it. Love, Jen.

To be spoken in the "Why don't you just tell me the name of the movie you want to see?" by Kramer, the burning question, "Why don't we just get our health care from aliens?":