Monday, June 24, 2013

Monday's Child

1.  This is just creepy.  Seriously.  Bad enough at a crematorium.  But a GERMAN crematorium?  What did they do with the shoes?

2.  Remarkable.  John Kiriakou's letter from prison.  Almost Gramsci quality, in its own way.

3.  Free the humans!  Ben Powell on immigration and trade.

4.  Gubmint concludes it would be better to prevent people from working....because there are RULZ, darn it!  Amazingly dumb rules, sure, but rules.

5.  The landlords from hell.  The reason?  Because SF "protects" renters.  The consequence, as Russ and I discussed at some length for such rules, is that preventing the price mechanism from working creates very large rents.  And since people can't buy or sell, they fight.  Markets are not the cause of the problem, but rather are the way to avoid the problem.  Suppress markets, and oppress the people.

6.  The enemy of markets is, for the most part, large corporations.  The government helps, but large corporations lead the way.

7.  My favorite mayor, my favorite topic:  mandatory composting.  This is a violation of 1st Amendment, folks.

8.  Father, 13 year old son hit HIO on same hole.  That's nice, 'cause now they can split buying the house a round back in the clubhouse.  Unless they BOTH have to buy the house a round....hmmmm.  Bankruptcy.  Unless they had HIO insurance.  Hey, WH, do you handle that sort of policy?

9.  Okay, so this is satire.  It is frighteningly accurate.  Phone call from George Orwell. He wants to know why you people didn't read his book.

10.  My student, with whom I am well pleased!  Bill English publishes his SECOND Am Pol Sci Rev paper.  And that's not easy.

11.  Clap is catching.  In fact, ovations are socially contagious, it appears.

12.  Warrior Princess...

13.  Absolutely fascinating article on the nature of obesity.  I just read (at the beach) Fast Food Nation, a remarkably tendentious and poorly researched piece of trash.  But I had assumed that there was at least some truth to the claim about fast food and obesity.  Maybe not...People eat more fast food, and people are getting fatter.  But marmosets and lab rats are getting fatter, too.  And they are on constant, controlled diets.  Do I know why?  I do not.  Am I skeptical of conspiracy theorists who think that there are bogeymen in the closet, selling french fries?  Yes, I am.

14. some pretty good company here!

15.  A gap in process:  one of those "human" mistakes.  Hee.

16.  Gazprom is promoting its status as a "green" company.  A bit of a lie, but okay, that's what giant corporations do.  What's interesting is that Gazprom appears to be financing front operations, or otherwise genuine environmental groups, as a means of suppressing shale oil.  And of course shale oil is the #1 competitive threat to Gazprom's lucrative monopoly.   It is a shame that it comes down to choosing which of two sets of profit-motivated rent-seekers to distrust more...But that's where we are right now.

17. Angus tweeted it. I'm just reporting it.  Your word for the day is "invigilator."

18.  Many of our Presidents are immoral crooks, because only an immoral crook would want to be President.  Starting out younger....

19.  Dan Drezner once called Mungowitz chopped liver.  So it is with some glee that I note that Dan Drezner is now chopped liver.  'Course he may go all fast zombie on that guy.  'Cause D-Drez is TOTALLY a zombie intellectual.  Or something like intellectual zombie.

20.  As usual, "small farmers" are just a stage prop for a Congress bought and paid for by large corporate food processors.  Distort incentives, make food more expensive, and raise the deficit, with zero benefit for the small farmers that members of Congress (mostly Repubs, but Dems also) claim they want to help.

21.  As good an example of a "just so" story as I've ever seen.  Plant has spines.  Sometimes (rarely) sheep get caught.  Dead sheep provide nutrients, when they decompose.  Therefore, plant has spines to catch sheep.  Phone call for Alex Rosenberg.

Headline Meme:

1.  Whitby Councilor Claims to Have Fathered Alien Child

2. Perhaps the single best example of the genre.  Unbelievably good.  Ready?
Woman dressed as vagina stops street fight between penis and man in Glastonbury
Story contains the line, "I could tell by his body language he was really upset."  Bless you, @muttface , that is quite a find.


Pelsmin said...

Enemy of markets is large corporations? I read the article looking for an entrenched incumbent using market power to block competition. All I saw was a landlord seeking rent, even if he didn't own the property himself.
Large corporations evil power requires one of two things: government complicity/enablement, or illegally anti-competitive behavior (again, needs government complicity/enablement to happen.)
Without those two things, they're just competing until someone better unseats them, which eventually happens to nearly every company.

Gerardo said...

Remarkably, the standing ovation paper doesn't even bother to cite Miller and Page.

Jeff R. said...

That article on obesity really fell apart at the end. He runs through a litany of different hypotheses and notes how most of them fall short by failing to account for the universality of the problem, then settles on the theory that obesity is the result of 19th Century British Imperialism in southeast Asia. Uh, what? Did the guy not read the first 2/3rd's of his own article? Does he have memory loss, ala Guy Pearce in Memento? WTF?

Jim Oliver said...

#13 design a bet and I will take the just thermodynamics side. Even some of his data is wrong.