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J. R. Lebowitz's Profile

Customer Reviews: 7
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J. R. Lebowitz "a reader" RSS Feed (upstate ny)

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My Struggle: Book 1
My Struggle: Book 1
Offered by Macmillan
Price: $9.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Different and interesting novel, May 1, 2015
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
The subject of this painstakingly detailed autobiography is Knsusgsard's life, his childhood, adolescence and young adulthood, and his relationships with his family and friends, most importantly with the father he loathes, on the occasion of his death and funeral preparations.


Doxie Flip Carrying Case (with hidden pocket)
Doxie Flip Carrying Case (with hidden pocket)
Offered by Apparent
Price: $19.00
2 used & new from $19.00

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Does the job., January 9, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
Nicely designed and padded slip type case, which fits the Doxie Flip perfectly. Includes small outside pocket for the instruction book and other small papers. Velcro closures.


Inequality for All
Inequality for All
DVD ~ Robert Reich
Price: $5.68
16 used & new from $1.99

4 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Connects the dots..., January 9, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Inequality for All (DVD)
Robert Reich does a 1967 style "Vietnam War teach in" on the subject of income inequality in the US, what it is, how it came about, why it is pernicious to our economy, democracy and way of life. We've heard a lot on this topic since the "Occupy" movement, but Reich drills deep in this documentary, based on his Berkeley lectures, but including other subjects, ordinary people, politicians, and tycoons.

The most interesting tycoon depicted is the CEO of Pacific Pillows, who realized belatedly that the "CEO as job creator" myth and "I'm a maker, you're a moocher" ideology of most billionaires (think Mitt Romney) with humility that he was not a master of the universe, but rather the consumers that could no longer afford to buy his pillows.

I'm a political person who reads Paul Krugman (and agrees with him) so much of this is old news to me, especially since Occupy and Citizens United, but there were some surprising "dots" here which Reich connects, like the country which provides the most "value added" content to an iPhone is not China (3%) as I supposed, but Germany.

The documentary is fairly entertaining as well, as a work of education and political agitation, rather than the typical escapism of "narrative" movies and TV shows.

However, after the problem is explained and diagnosed, Reich offers no solutions or easy answers. He implies this has changed before either peacefully (progressives and FDR in US) or not (revolutions, social unrest) but offers no prescriptions or predictions. The one shocking and somewhat depressing end is presented as uplifting, when at the end of the film (spoilers alert) Reich implicitly turns over the problem to the younger generations, his students, with the notion that they will figure out a solution somehow.

The film's one call to action is at the end where a text number and website address is given where those interested can stay in touch with future political organizing efforts (the first of which is a Move On petition to increase fast food workers wages to $15/hr).


Signagel® Electrode Gel, 250 Gram Tube
Signagel® Electrode Gel, 250 Gram Tube
Offered by MetaRetail
Price: $6.55
9 used & new from $6.55

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Works better than spit for heart rate monitors, September 22, 2012
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
Need I say more? And a tube last a long time, months and years even if you're a daily exerciser. The tube isn't as handy a size as the competitor (Buh Bump cream), but it's much less expensive and the tube goes a long ways, as I said.

It also is long lasting and holds up well during a workout. You have to wipe it off the electrode belt and your chest with a towel when you're done.


Das Keyboard Professional Model S for Mac (DASK3PROMS1MACCLI)
Das Keyboard Professional Model S for Mac (DASK3PROMS1MACCLI)
Price: $122.99
12 used & new from $95.00

3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Just when you thought the MacBook Pro couldn't be improved..., September 22, 2012
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
...someone figured how to graft the excellent IBM Selectric typewriter (remember typewriters?) keyboard on to them as an external peripheral.

Das Keyboard is a modern day update of the Selectric keyboard -- an external keyboard with a USB connection (and 2 port hub), with a full size 101 key keyboard with big, "clicky" full travel, keys with gold contacts, and it's is fast and accurate.

I cranked out a brief yesterday and the typing seemed a lot quicker and less aggravating than my laptop's normal mushy, low travel keyboard.

Highly recommended for any wordsmiths out there!

They used to make a PC version of this that could be converted to mac by puling the PC keytops off off and substituting the mac keys and it didn't have the mac function keys, but that's been fixed now with a mac specific version with the command and alt/option keys and function keys properly marked and in the same places as the mac keyboard layout.


CardScan Executive Card Scanner -Mac
CardScan Executive Card Scanner -Mac

27 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Works for me, flawlessly!, October 25, 2008
Fortunately, I was eligible for a $179 competitive upgrade direct from the manufacturer for an old CardScan Windows brick I found down in my basement in the box of orphaned peripherals. I had loved CardScan back in my Windows days, but had lost hope that they would come out with a Mac version. In the meantime, I had struggled with the kludgey I.R.I.S. business card scanner for mac and its flakey crapware that really didn't integrate with Mac Address Book all that well and had a horrible OCR recognition error rate and field parsing engine and seemed to run like it was written in Javascript.

Well, I'm happy that the Mac version of CardScan works flawlessly for me with a typical Mac setup (an Intel Mac Book Pro running 10.5.5.) and that setup was a snap. With some trepidation, I synched with my Address Book and no precious contact data was lost or damaged. I then scanned some business cards and it parsed the various fields with almost 100% accuracy, including some tricky company names in graphic logos, and put the data in a suggested "inspector" window. One click to verify (or change any fields with a linked zoom to the card pane view) and the new card data is in the CardScan database and then synched with your mac Address Book.

Couldn't be easier! Very satisfied user! While I'm not a frequent Amazon reviewer or any kind of computer expert, I wanted to post a counter review to the two negative reviews recently posted. While individual products and installations can sometimes be flaky and your mileage may vary, I found this CardScan product to be as good as I remember the Windows version being and better, because everything's better on a Mac (including Address Book being better than the fugly Outlook ecosystem).


Bottlemania: How Water Went on Sale and Why We Bought It
Bottlemania: How Water Went on Sale and Why We Bought It
by Elizabeth Royte
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $20.04
172 used & new from $0.01

38 of 42 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Don't be put off by the apparently trivial title, June 6, 2008
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
The title is cute and catchy and implies the book is a lightweight screed about the erstwhile evils of drinking bottled water. Yes, the initial starting point for Ms. Royte's inquiry was asking some simple questions about the impacts and equities of a corporation bottling huge quantities of Maine springwater. But this is an important environmental book, in the same league as "An Inconvenient Truth".

This is because Ms. Royte's simple questions about bottled water lead her and us on an exploration of a whole hidden world of our water and sanitation resources and infrastructure that lies behind our taps. How does bottled springwater differ from tap water in terms of harmful biological and chemical contaminants? How did the fad of chugging water out of throwaway plastic bottles catch on? Where does our tap water come from? How is it treated? Is that necessarily good for us? What is happening to the watersheds that all of us depend on? How can they be protected? How are water and sanitation systems interrelated? Are these groundwater and freshwater issues affected by other environmental trends, like global warming? And so on.

Like Ms. Royte, you will probably come to the end of this brisk, readable work knowing a lot more about your own water and sanitation then you did when you began and have a much better appreciation of the somewhat unsurprising policy conclusions she reaches: that protecting our public drinking water "commons" makes more sense than drinking water bottled at distant plants.

Although judging by the cute title and cover art the topic might seem a bit frothy and more of a treatise on marketing and product development, the author's target is much wider. I am an environmental attorney and have handled permitting and litigation involving public water supply and sanitary treatment systems and bottled springwater, and am impressed by how the author is able to get so much technical detail right, while keep it readable and interesting to a lay audience. Ms. Royte has written one of the best general interest books in a long while on an important, probably, THE most important environmental topic (other than climate change/greenhouse gases) of "wat-san" and preserving/expanding our aging public water and sewer infrastructure. In getting to those conclusions by starting her inquiry with questions about commoditized bottled water, the author attempts to be evenhanded and fair in her depiction of the corporate and individual actors without overly indulging in anti-corporate bias.

My only minor quibble is the omission of any discussion of state licensing requirements and associated testing and reporting requirements (where it says, e.g., "NYSHD Cert. No. ___" on the label in small type). However, that's just a small omission, although I'm surprised the Nestle people didn't mention that there are state reviews of their in-house analytical and production data, it would seem to make their case stronger that water quality is not merely self-regulated or conforming only to advisory industry standards (i.e., IBWA) with respect to periodic testing, labeling and allowable maximum contaminant levels. That small error however does not detract significantly from the quality of this book. I've just ordered a few more copies of this book to share with several friends and colleagues who I think would be interested, that's how much I'm recommending it.


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