Links for 11/4/11

Is junk food the next tobacco? Diet paternalists are taking pages from the anti-smoking playbook.

In Australia, a law that banned smoking by mental health patients is likely to be reversed due to its cruel effects:

Reports have shown some involuntary patients were even swapping sex for cigarettes and poking electricity sockets with paper clips to get a spark and light up. […]

Ms Morton said the total smoking ban was harming patients and hindering their recovery, as well as endangering staff who had to deal with patients desperate for a cigarette. She said there was widespread support from stakeholders in the mental health area for a lifting of the smoking ban, which she hoped to change by next year.

Christopher Snowdon follows up on Oregon’s heart non-miracle.

Now that’s a leave of absence:

Last fall, Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed decided to use vacation days he had saved up in his eight years as a regional compliance specialist in the Buffalo office of the New York Department of Transportation. He told his co-workers he would be traveling to Mogadishu—the city he was born in, but had not seen since 1985—and that he would return in three weeks. What he didn’t reveal was the purpose of the trip: to interview to become prime minister of Somalia.

Troy Patterson rounds up the year’s cocktail books and examines each through the lens of that enduring and infinitely varied cocktail, the Old-Fashioned.

Ken Jennings is the 99%.