March 29th, 2009

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Unemployment Exceeds 10% in 7 States---so far


The image above represents January's rates, and the big news is that three more states have passed 10% employment between January and February.

States with jobless rates over 10% in February, according to the Labor Department:
--Michigan 12%
--South Carolina 11%
--Oregon 10.8% (new on list)
--North Carolina 10.7% (new on list, record high for state)
--California 10.5%
--Rhode Island 10.5% (record high for state)
--Nevada 10.5% (new on list)
--what state do you think will join this list next?
--what state do you think will be last to join?
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Movie: Supersize Me

The other night Suz and I watched Supersize Me. It was more interesting than I expected. If you haven't seen it, basically the movie tracks a healthy young man (Morgan Spurlock) who decides to experiment on himself by eating only McDonald's food for an entire month. His girlfriend is a vegan chef, so he normally eats mainly vegetables. But it becomes apparent that part of his motivation is a certain relish for big greasy burgers.
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Movies: Coraline


We saw this today. I was unimpressed. It was made here in Portland, and the notable thing about this movie is the type of animation that was used---they filmed real objects, and moved them, instead of creating the images on a computer, or drawing them. So it's 3D animation. Creative, interesting, yes. Not enough for me, though. As usual, my judgment of movies is based more on content than it is on style. The story is a one of a child whose parents are very busy, who feels neglected. She finds a magical passageway into another world where alternative parents live, and is enchanted. The terrific alternative life are an illusion created by the "other mother" specifically to trap her, but she is a smart girl and figures it out before she is trapped. The "other mother" turns into a heinous spiderlike creature and all sorts of nasty things happen. The bottom line is that children should stay happily at home even if their parents don't have time for them, because the alternative turns into a horror movie. Don't run away. There are no other clear useful messages for children, and if I had seen this movie as a child it probably would have given me nightmares. Heck, I'm a little worried to go to bed tonight even at my age. I'm susceptible to scary movie manipulations. Movie score: 2/5. Not for me, and not for any children I care about.