posted 2 days ago on metafilter
Most people in the English-speaking parts of the world missed Putin's speech at the Valdai conference in Sochi a few days ago, and, chances are, those of you who have heard of the speech didn't get a chance to read it, and missed its importance. (For your convenience, I am pasting in the full transcript of his speech below.) Western media did their best to ignore it or to twist its meaning. Regardless of what you think or don't think of Putin (like the sun and the moon, he does not exist for you to cultivate an opinion) this is probably the most important political speech since Churchill's "Iron Curtain" speech of March 5, 1946. Via includes tl;dr of top 10 points

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posted 2 days ago on metafilter
Takata has recalled cars in states that it deems "high humidity," because of the deadly airbag problem. But as often noted, most of the deaths involved were in non-listed states. My state, Tennessee, is just outside the designated area, and my car (old Honda Accord) is one of the troublemakers.So it is not reassuring for me to hear that my car is not being recalled - presumably none of the cars here in Tennessee are. I called the Honda dealer here to ask, recall aside, whether my car has a Takata airbag. The service manager took my VIN number and said "it's not on my recall list [!!], but you can bring it in and for $104 dollars, have the airbag taken out." This was not the information I was hoping for: is there any way to find this out? Government and manufacturer online tools are not relevant, as their lists are limited to the recall.

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posted 2 days ago on metafilter
My comfort-loving preschooler (boy) only likes to wear sweatpants and leggings. I am of the opinion that sweatpants should never be worn in public, and most leggings are probably not warm enough for winter. Can you help me find comfy, warm pants that also look good?We have some jeggings (leggings that look like jeans) but they are pretty thin and not very warm, plus he tears holes in the knees in under a month. He's basically in leggings every day at this point because he refuses to wear regular pants (jeans, cargo pants, etc) and I refuse to let him go to school in sweatpants. But as the weather gets cooler I know I will get complaints from him that he's cold, so I want to be prepared for winter with some pants that will pass the comfort test. He's a size 4T or so (legs are 4T long, but he's kind of skinny and has more of a 3T waist, so elastic is preferred). Links to items on Amazon would be great, but I also have access to Target and Walmart.

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posted 2 days ago on metafilter
Why not just quit your job and spend all of your savings on a horror-themed road trip where you visit the real locations of some iconic scary movies. If that sounds like too much effort, well we've done a Google-based trip ourselves. Here's what we found... Here's the list: The Omen Halloween Rosemary's Baby Poltergeist The Mist Scream 2 Drag Me To Hell The Fog The Birds Shaun of the Dead

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posted 2 days ago on metafilter
If someone is a 65+ recent green card holder with only 3 years work experience in the US and who hasn't lived continuously in the US for 5 years (but has visited every year for several months for a decade), they don't qualify for free or even paid Medicare. What is the best health insurance plan for them if they spend 5-7 months in the US, and the rest in their home country in Asia? Are they best off with an Obamacare plan, or some kind of special immigrant health insurance, or what? Thanks.

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posted 2 days ago on metafilter
Looking for your ideas and apps for a professional journal-keeping system. More inside!I keep a detailed daily journal at work. I'm the head of a busy department, and logging the day's events and action items is a necessity for me. Partly to keep track of All The Things, and partly to give myself some sense of control over the chaos. I began doing this 10+ years ago with a notebook and a pen... and, embarrassing to admit, I've never improved on that. While digging through the boxes and boxes of logs in storage, it hit me that this has become dumb-stupid and I need to upgrade. I tried creating one in MS Word: date at the top and then bullet point, bullet point, bullet point. Eh. Maybe I need more time to habit-form, but I can't stick with it. It just feels like one more Word doc, my day is full of those. Anyone have any better ideas? A few specifications: - Security is a factor. Confidential employee and company info. This is not a shared document. - Accessibility isn't critical; I take my notes at my desk, don't necessarily need to access at home. In addition to the work PC, I do have a Galaxy smartphone and a Kindle Fire tablet, FWIW. - Searchability would be great! - Entries vary in size from short ("Project X done, submitted to John") to pretty long ("Met with John at 4:15 p.m. about X, did not go well, he's going to blah blah blah...") Thanks for your recommendations!

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posted 2 days ago on metafilter
What's the most cost-effective way to print about 10000 [unique] photos? I'm enjoying going through my grandparent's photo albums, and while I'm not concerned about backups (I am extremely good about backups), I am very concerned about discoverability; I think my grandchildren someday are much more likely to find and go through a stack of physical photo albums than they are a CD in a drawer.I'm open to options that aren't individual photo-printing (e.g., printed photo-books), but I'd want to know how good the color quality is compared to real photo paper.

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posted 2 days ago on metafilter
Recent news items about Hello Kitty have reminded me of a song I last heard more than a decade ago and which I cannot find today. Someone, help me locate this musical "treasure"!A dozen or so years ago, I acquired an MP3 player from a friend that still had some of her music stored. One of the songs which managed to earworm its way into a place in the back of my head was called (or, at least labelled as such) "Dear Daniel", about Hello Kitty's boyfriend Daniel. The song talked about his love for Hello Kitty, despite the fact that she doesn't have a mouth. I remember it as a soft but basically up-beat pop song. Of course, that MP3 player is long gone, and the music it stored went with it. I haven't been in touch with this friend in ages, so I can't go back to her to ask about it. Google searching for the title isn't helpful, and the two songs I have found called "Dear Daniel" are not at all related to what I'm remembering. I know it's not the Friendship Song that I've found on YouTube, either. Is this ringing a bell with anyone?

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posted 2 days ago on metafilter
HomeOffice FurnitureFilter. Tall, interesting, well-constructed non-generic computer desk with shelving and storage. We like this - does anyone know anything like it - i.e with similar functionality - for a max cost of $1200?This is for this room that I posted about last time; we have installed a wall/pocket door where you can see the cabinets ending, so the space is pretty small; the desk would be on the left side wall. No ladder desks, generic office furniture, glass-top desks, elfa like shelving systems, fussy ye olde secretary hutches, or ikea stuff. If you know of anything more expensive that this, give us brands/model numbers; we may look for it used. If you know someone in NYC who will build for this kind of $$, also let us know! Desk width 35"-64", depth 20-26". (Maximum desk width =64" ideally ~ 60").

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posted 2 days ago on metafilter
I need a jpeg file to be imported onto a website which will be printed from there.I needed to create a photo collage with some text boxes so I did it by creating a slide in PowerPoint 2010. It must be saved as a jpeg file with a high enough resolution for publication in a book (in color). I was able to save it as a jpeg and changed the registry to do it at a 300 dpi resolution. However, I am concerned that it is not a very good quality (it does not look good on the screen). Is there a better way to create a photo collage with text (preferably very flexible that I choose the format) that can be saved as a jpeg? Or is there a better way to do it within Power Point?

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posted 2 days ago on metafilter
The good news is that we are getting a cat, but it will be this weekend! He's a young male tiger cat stray. The current caretakers say he likes unscented cat litter (will not go in the box if litter is scented). Does anyone have any recommendations for a decent supermarket litter that is clumping and unscented. I don't have time to get fancy or specialty litter with the timetable involved.Obligatory pictures of the cat, Perry. (Bonus question, I'm iffy on his current name, so if anyone has thoughts on cat names as well, we would be grateful.) The longer version is that I am currently dealing with my father's unexpected death a month ago, with much sorrow, angst and paperwork, since I'm the executor as well. My father and his 2 sibilings all died from different causes in the last month, so the extended family is grieving and in shock (and I'm seriously sleep deprived as well). I'm very very happy to get the cat, but the timing is bad, and I don't have a lot of time to get ready for his arrival, so good tips on cat litter would be so very gratefully received. I have no car so supermarket or mail order options would be best.

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posted 2 days ago on metafilter
I absolutely love everything about this suit pattern. Could you help me find a modern day equivalent?The pattern linked is from a company called Advance and is #7800. It's from the 1950s. I would love to find something cheaper than $40 or $50 dollars, which is what I've seen it selling for on Etsy today. Do you know of, or could you help me find a more modern pattern with those sorts of features? What I'm gaga over: the longer peplum jacket. The lack of lapels. The cinched-in waist. I could see myself making this in classic fabrics but also whackadoodle fabrics like chair upholstery or toile de jouy. The two that are for sale on Etsy are size 12, and from what I understand that's equivalent to maybe a modern 8? I can wear anything from an 8 to a 14 with pattern adjustments, so the size of the pattern isn't as important as the details. I'm not interested in the dress so much as the suit. The suit is where it's at! I'm a decent sewer and can handle intricate and/or complicated instructions. I need a pattern as opposed to drafting one myself because that's how I roll. Thanks for any help!

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posted 2 days ago on metafilter
The Red Cross' Secret Disaster — ProPublica and NPR report on the American Red Cross' poor responses to Hurricanes Isaac and Sandy. In 2012, two massive storms pounded the United States, leaving hundreds of thousands of people homeless, hungry or without power for days and weeks. Americans did what they so often do after disasters. They sent hundreds of millions of dollars to the Red Cross, confident their money would ease the suffering left behind by Superstorm Sandy and Hurricane Isaac. They believed the charity was up to the job. They were wrong. The Red Cross botched key elements of its mission after Sandy and Isaac, leaving behind a trail of unmet needs and acrimony, according to an investigation by ProPublica and NPR. The charity's shortcomings were detailed in confidential reports and internal emails, as well as accounts from current and former disaster relief specialists. What's more, Red Cross officials at national headquarters in Washington, D.C. compounded the charity's inability to provide relief by "diverting assets for public relations purposes," as one internal report puts it. Distribution of relief supplies, the report said, was "politically driven." During Isaac, Red Cross supervisors ordered dozens of trucks usually deployed to deliver aid to be driven around nearly empty instead, "just to be seen," one of the drivers, Jim Dunham, recalls. "We were sent way down on the Gulf with nothing to give," Dunham says. The Red Cross' relief effort was "worse than the storm."

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posted 2 days ago on metafilter
I find myself unable to be fully candid speaking in person with therapists and wonder if I might do better corresponding with a therapist online by e-mail or chat or something. Does this exist? Would you recommend it? Is there a better idea?I've been struggling with depression and have finally found a counselor who I like and respect and who seems insightful. He's already helped me get better in some ways. But I find I am unable to be fully candid with him. I'm too vain, too embarrassed, to talk about the depths of my pettiness and selfishness and self-defeating behaviors. I'm not talking about anything illegal and I'm not suicidal or violent. I've had this problem with therapists (and confessors) before. Even when I manage to blurt out things that I didn't think I could say, it hasn't led to me feeling able to be fully candid in the future with that person. Even with a therapist, I can't stop pretending I'm doing better than I am. I can't say out loud all the things I'm thinking and feeling. So I'm wondering if there would be a way to do therapy that's not face-to-face, if maybe I would be able to talk freely if I were typing to someone anonymously. I don't know if that exists, or whether it would be a good idea if it did. Does anyone have experience with this? Or have any other ideas about how I might approach this situation?

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posted 2 days ago on metafilter
Is it a bad idea to fill the air gap in between double brick walls? Our 100 year old house is in need of some insulation so we had a couple of companies give us a quote. One company recommended spraying Air Krete (a kind of foam insulation) in the gap between our double brick walls. The other company said this was a horrible idea and could damage our house! They said to rip out the plaster & lathe and install interior insulation.The second company said that the gap in between double brick walls can serve to wick moisture away from the brick and that filling it could cause damage over the years. Is this true or is he just trying to scare off the competition?

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posted 2 days ago on metafilter
Planning a trip to middle-of-nowhere Sweden, and am flying through Stockholm. I'd like to organize a day or two layover in the city before heading to nowheresville. How do you do this? Does it have to involve phone calls, or is it possible to organize online? Would you expect it to be more or less expensive that a regular itinerary?

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posted 2 days ago on metafilter
I love these boots. I don't love the $395 price tag. Can you help me find something extremely similar?Things I like about the boots: *The mid-height, chunky heel. I don't want anything much thinner than that, because then I'll feel like I'm actually wearing heels. *The absence of frills, hardware, patterns, accents, or color. * The ankle-height cut. * The pointy, but not too pointy, toe box. * The quality. I love Loeffler Randall quality, and understand that's why the brand is pricey. I'm hoping to find something even close in quality, but less in price. Some (albeit cute) options that aren't what I'm looking for: The too thin heel, the cut goes too far over the ankle. The fussy zipper pull, the contrasting leathers, and the "wooden" heel. The turned-up, nearly cowboy-ish toe, and the Steve Madden quality. (The ones I'm trying to replace are higher end Maddens, and they bit the dust after one winter in NYC.) The slightly too thin heel and the price. (This one's closest, however!) Sigh, if I can't find anything totally right for less, I'm willing to splurge for the Madewells or the Loeffler Randalls. But I'm hoping to keep the price to about max $200. Thoughts? Do these exist?

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posted 2 days ago on metafilter
Hollywood Ending Near for Orson Welles's Last Film. The Other Side of the Wind due in theaters next year.

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posted 2 days ago on metafilter
Somewhere in the murky corridors of the internet I once read an article about how certain societal problems (HIV rates, road death rates, homicide rates) are higher in countries with greater income inequality (a higher Gini coefficient) than in countries that are poor but with more equally distributed wealth. Where can I read more about this? Well-written, accessible-for-a-layman book recommendations particularly gratefully received. (I'm currently reading Alain de Botton's 'Status Anxiety'.)

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posted 2 days ago on metafilter
Finally, after 10 years I'm visiting new York City again. I guess the city have changed a lot. I'm there for about 10 days, and I'm really into used records. Can MeFi recommend good shops for used (or not) records? Perhaps other shops for turntable lovers? Thanks.

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posted 2 days ago on metafilter
This isn't the earliest TV footage that exists of Joni Mitchell, but it's surely the earliest footage of her performing that's in color. -- Joni Mitchell on Canadian television in 1966.

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posted 2 days ago on metafilter
I'm a huge fan of Howard Zinn's book "A People's history of the United States" and I'm looking for close equivalents for Britain, Australia and Canada.

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posted 2 days ago on metafilter
Switzerland's shame: The children used as cheap farm labour.

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posted 2 days ago on metafilter
I made some vegetarian sloppy Joes for dinner. They were SO. GOOD. Then I left them out on the for 8 hours....Help.hi MeFites! So I made these veggie sloppy Joes last night. The ingredients in their rough amounts were as follows: 1/2 sweet onion, diced 1-2 tbsp unsalted butter 1 pkg frozen morningstar farms grillers crumbles several splashes of apple cider vinegar dash or two of bragg's amino acids garlic powder 1 can campbell's old fashioned tomato rice soup, condensed 2-ish tablespoons of raw unprocessed sugar I left it in a broad heavy pan, covered with a glass lid, for approximately 8 hours. There is a good amount of acid in this recipe between the tomato and vinegar, but I'm still apprehensive about eating these now. I put the leftovers in the fridge as soon as I got home. So MeFites, what do you think? Shall I reheat and eat this delicious stuff again, or am I fated to toss it? Thanks!

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posted 2 days ago on metafilter
I work with high school students who all have iPads. Because the ipad is so handy, and because iMovie is so easy to use, I want the students to edit their video projects on the ipad. Currently they use adobe premiere on desktop computers. I am not having any success finding simple solutions to this.Here are the facts: 1) Video is generated from DSLRs, iphones, and ipads. 2) We currently store video on an external hard drive that we all share. 3) When video was shot on the ipad, editing a quick movie was super easy and fast. 4) We have a camera connection kit, but taking stored video (ie, from last month/year) and putting it on an SD card (and then importing into an ipad) is laborious and uses up tons of time. 5) We have a drop box account, but the workflow of uploading and then downloading takes forever. The transfer process is very slow, and this is at a school with a great internet connection. 6) Same deal with youtube. I figured we could just use their rudimentary editor, but the upload process takes forever. I feel like I must be missing something. Is it really this hard to use such a well-designed and ubiquitous device? Is there an app or website that everyone (but me) knows about? (With all of the gopros and iphones out there, how are millions of people editing their millions of youtube videos? My co-teacher says everyone is using their macbooks.)

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