Open Thread, Open Existence

Have fun dropping whatever in comments below.

 

A recent piece in the Guardian from a guy I work with on how terrible the elderly fare in Asian countries.

 

I sense quite a bit of cognitive dissonance in South Korea, which supposedly culturally values its elders, but which leaves many to suffer in poverty and is obsessed over youth. 

 

From the article:

 

Across Asia, the younger generations are less willing than before to take in ailing parents, even though middle-class families today are wealthier than in generations past. It would be one thing if east Asian societies had generous pensions and comprehensive universal healthcare coverage, but in fact the health insurance is usually patchy – many catastrophic illnesses are not covered by national insurance systems – and pensions remain low or even non-existent. The same generation that built up east Asia's "tiger" economies and middle-class societies have been suffering neglect in their advancing years, and the problem is likely to worsen ...

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A thousand pardons

(#311217)
Bird Dog's picture

Actually, more like 40. Going down the list, the last president with fewer pardons than Obama was James Garfield, who was shot after being in office for just under three months.

"Transparency and the rule of law will be the touchstones of this presidency."

--Barack Obama, January 2009

Doesn't look like

(#311228)

Bush warmed up to it until his second term. Interesting list, though. 

 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_people_pardoned_by_George_W._Bush

 

 

They couldn't hit an elephant at this dist...
-- General John B. Sedgwick, 1864

Microsoft's $500 Paperweight, pending updates and headset launch

(#311216)
brutusettu's picture

Xbox One cost: $500

Xbox One capabilities out of the box: can hold paper down and prevent it from moving in a gust of wind

Xbox One online capabilities for 2+ months: can play and communicate with other people and hear their speakers on the other end come in clean whenever they talk.

 

 

500+ MB update required at the start (at one million units sold, that's over 476 terabytes just for that update)

 

12 MB update to play CDs

 

Another 30ish MB update required to play Blu-ray or DVDs.

 

Zero cables for hooking up stereo to console, tv only audio for many.

 

Microsoft's listening and watch post (Kinect) required for automatic sign in.

 

Controllers' designed for Frankenstein's monster.

 

Download queue stuck at zero, impossible to play a game on it for hours after everything else is installed.

 

Servers overloaded once game is installed, no online player for many users.

 

Cheap worthless headset that picks up to much background noise is provided.

 

Higher end headsets unavailable for 2+ months until after launch.

 

 

 

"Successful launch" says WaPo

Darn! Alec Baldwin out before he was hardly in

(#311208)
Bird Dog's picture

So reports Page Six. He should never have called Anderson Cooper a "butt pirate".

Alec Baldwin stoked more controversy today by using a gay slur to describe CNN host Anderson Cooper.
Interviewed by TMZ outside his New York apartment, the film and television star was asked if he had a message for Cooper, who last week openly criticized Baldwin on Twitter.
"Yeah, tell that butt pirate to stay the hell out of my business," Baldwin responded. "The paparazzi are bad enough, I don't need some drama queen on Twitter spreading rumors and false allegations.
"I'm a celebrity. I have higher stress levels than the average person. Sometimes I lose my cool and fly off the handle. So what? Of all people, a national newscaster should understand the pressures A-listers like me are under.
"It's pathetic to think that Anderson has nothing better to do than hunch over his computer and Tweet about my life. Go catch a broadway musical or something. Get a manicure. Do something useful for a change."

 

"Transparency and the rule of law will be the touchstones of this presidency."

--Barack Obama, January 2009

I Love His Defense

(#311223)

"I called Anderson Cooper a butt pirate because he can't stop butting into my personal life," Baldwin later told E! News. "It has nothing to do with homosexuality at all. Frankly, I had no idea he was gay. He seems so normal. Never wears leather pants or anything.

And...

"If Anderson or anyone else in the homo community was offended by the phrase butt pirate, I am truly sorry. I had no idea what those words meant when I said them. This whole anti-gay thing is ridiculous. Some of my best friends are comfortable with gay people."

He's clearly not taking this very seriously.

This was clear enough to Larkin, whose patriotism rested on the notion that England was the worst place on earth with the possible exception of everywhere else.

Er, M.A. . .

(#311226)
M Scott Eiland's picture

It's fake (searching the key phrases reveals a lot of parody sites, and people who linked them not knowing they were parody sites). Thus my pleading Poe's Law in defense after BD pointed it out (politely refraining from laughing at me as he did so)--it *was* plausibly a Baldwin thing to do, but sadly this particular instance is fictional. In fact, if I was in a locked room with no Internet access and had been presented with those phrases and "Baldwin or B*****it?" choices with my life at stake, I'm quite sure my brains would have been splattered abundantly over the inside of that room by the third choice at the latest.

The universe may well have been created without a point--that doesn't imply that we can't give it one.

Oops...

(#311229)

My bad.

 

Well, I'm not omniscient. I didn't really check. It looked plausible, as you say. And even if they were actual quotes, I wouldn't really blame Baldwin for them. I mean the whole thing started when he insulted a paparazzi, a parasitic life form if there ever was one, gay or straight.

 

Come to think about it, the one odd phrase that I wasn't quite squaring with Baldwin was "A-listers like me". He wouldn't say that, even if he thought it in those terms.

This was clear enough to Larkin, whose patriotism rested on the notion that England was the worst place on earth with the possible exception of everywhere else.

I Have To Admit. . .

(#311230)
M Scott Eiland's picture

. . .that I find his tendency to occasionally threaten to do great bodily harm to the paparazzi to be by far his most endearing trait. I might even contribute to any defense fund started on his behalf if he really did some damage to a swarm of them.*

*--*Scott hangs his head and mutters "But that would be wrong. I'm almost totally convinced of that."* :-P

The universe may well have been created without a point--that doesn't imply that we can't give it one.

Resume Items One Should Generally Avoid

(#311218)
M Scott Eiland's picture

"Fired for calling competitor a 'butt pirate.'"

MSNBC seems to have a knack for hiring foul-mouthed borderline megalomaniacs as prime time talent. If Christian Bale or Paul Anka ever need a few years (or months, depending on how long before the inevitable meltdown hits) of downtime from their current gigs, they'll know where to go to keep busy.

The universe may well have been created without a point--that doesn't imply that we can't give it one.

Well,

(#311219)
Bird Dog's picture

my blockquote was satire but the actual offense was apparently enough to sack him.

"Transparency and the rule of law will be the touchstones of this presidency."

--Barack Obama, January 2009

I Plead Not Guilty Due To Poe's Law

(#311220)
M Scott Eiland's picture

Also, I throw myself on the mercy of the court due to youth and inexperience, and long and faithful service. :-P

The universe may well have been created without a point--that doesn't imply that we can't give it one.

Well........Crap! I guess it's better late than never to

(#311231)

hear there is such a law.  Going back and reading a lot of my comments folks might think I'm a bit of an A-hole.  I really don't need that here as I get enough of that sort of affirmation from family and friends.

In the medical community, death is known as Chuck Norris Syndrome. 

Heh

(#311224)
Bird Dog's picture

The "not guilty" due to Poe's Law is sufficient, and extra credit for knowing Poe's Law as a defense.

"Transparency and the rule of law will be the touchstones of this presidency."

--Barack Obama, January 2009

Learned About It Here--From Brut, IIRC

(#311225)
M Scott Eiland's picture

Or Stinerman, but I'm actually pretty sure it was Brut.

The universe may well have been created without a point--that doesn't imply that we can't give it one.

And here's something that should be satirical...

(#311227)
Bird Dog's picture

...but is not, and it's yours for just $130.

Some moms have buried it, some have painted with it, while others have made smoothies or capsules to ingest it.

Now, a British artist has created picture frames from placentas.

 

"Transparency and the rule of law will be the touchstones of this presidency."

--Barack Obama, January 2009

Alec still has a real life problem with some people

(#311213)
brutusettu's picture

even if he tries using his "support" of them as a shield to bash  people with.

Hippy Pope Watch, Reaganism in the Vatican's crosshairs edition

(#311200)

... some people continue to defend trickle-down theories which assume that economic growth, encouraged by a free market, will inevitably succeed in bringing about greater justice and inclusiveness in the world. This opinion, which has never been confirmed by the facts, expresses a crude and naïve trust in the goodness of those wielding economic power and in the sacralized workings of the prevailing economic system. Meanwhile, the excluded are still waiting. To sustain a lifestyle which excludes others, or to sustain enthusiasm for that selfish ideal, a globalization of indifference has developed. ... The culture of prosperity deadens us; we are thrilled if the market offers us something new to purchase; and in the meantime all those lives stunted for lack of opportunity seem a mere spectacle; they fail to move us."

 

My goodness, how rude. The Pope just can't understand that in today's world we have a very high minded and good faith disagreement over economic theory and the best means to achieve widespread prosperity. Our prevailing economic conservatism isn't an ideology that rationalizes abject selfishness, even though its most widely read proponent wrote works like "The Virtue of Selfishness". The Pope is way, way off base here.

 

This is all so crazy, Sarah Palin has been having trouble figuring out what the Pope is really saying, since he also professes to believe in Jesus and opposes abortion and gay marriage:

 

“He's had some statements that to me sound kind of liberal, has taken me aback, has kind of surprised me. There again, unless I really dig deep into what his messaging is, and do my own homework, I’m not going to just trust what I hear in the media.”

She continued: "I'm kinda trying to follow what his agenda is. You know he came out with a couple of things in the media but again I'm not one to trust the media's interpretation of somebody's message of having read through media outlets," the former Governor of Alaska said.

 

Keep working on this one, Sarah! With that famous work ethic of yours you'll eventually pierce through the lame stream media!

Big banks still ruining the economy

(#311192)

(Reuters) - U.S. borrowers are increasingly missing payments on home equity lines of credit they took out during the housing bubble, a trend that could deal another blow to the country's biggest banks.

 

The loans are a problem now because an increasing number are hitting their 10-year anniversary, at which point borrowers usually must start paying down the principal on the loans as well as the interest they had been paying all along.

 

More than $221 billion of these loans at the largest banks will hit this mark over the next four years, about 40 percent of the home equity lines of credit now outstanding.

Link

 

Thanks for cleaning up the mess, Geithner, and so sorry you're too busy cashing in to chair the Fed.

 

While these huge, risky, behemoths might fail again need more liquidity, most everyone who knows anything about economics believes that's an acceptable risk we all benefit from, and hardly anybody thinks we need to break these institutions up.

Will central bankers help the American economy?

(#311184)

A federal government run mostly by centrists and conservatives is exploring new forms of gridlock and only doing harm for the foreseeable future.

 

Central bankers on the other hand are potential bright spots.

 

China's has promised to let the yuan appreciate against the dollar by freezing its foreign currency holdings. China accounts for more than half of the trade deficit, with $315 billion in 2012 due to China alone. If the trade deficit with China were cut in half, CEPR estimates it would lead to 2 million net jobs. 

 

Meanwhile, the US still has a $225 billion trade deficit per year with the rest of the world, so Janet Yellen's potential commitment to actual inflation could also help create domestic manufacturing jobs and/or spur job-creating investment.

 

Central bankers often move very incrementally, but it's still a bright spot from at least some of the people in charge of the world;s economies that I don't see anywhere else on the horizon.

Not saying it's true

(#311127)

But if Bibi Netanyahu was pro- the Iran deal, he would behave exactly as he's doing. Nothing is going to sell the Iranian hard-liners on this deal like Bibi's fury. It tells them the deal is good for them, and it shows them the alternative to the deal at the same time.

"I don't want us to descend into a nation of bloggers." - Steve Jobs

Yep

(#311128)
M Scott Eiland's picture

Mr. Netanyahu's ability to provoke his political enemies into spasms of mindless outrage rivals that of Sarah Palin, and for far higher stakes and practiced over a far longer period of time.

The universe may well have been created without a point--that doesn't imply that we can't give it one.

also

(#311140)

Appearing pissed at the US means having an excuse not to do much on settlements

Netanyahu might or might not

(#311143)

really think the deal is a disaster,  but apparently a lot of Israelis don't:

 

Israeli markets gain, investors say Iran deal not a mistake

Yes

(#311133)
mmghosh's picture

Mr Netanyahu's opponents are indeed apoplectic.

"If you walk in a sinister manner with Me, then I shall walk in a sinister manner with you" (Leviticus 26: 23-24).

 

Hashem tells us in the above passage, as He says in many other places in the Torah, that He runs the world - and especially Israel and the Jewish People - on a measure-for-measure basis.

The word in Hebrew for sinister is kerry - it also means rebellious or spiritually impure.

freedom is a fundamental value that does not need to be justified in terms of some other value like efficiency

Credit where due

(#311111)
Bird Dog's picture

A key paragraph from this piece:

The concessions not only halt Iran’s nuclear advances but also make it virtually impossible for Tehran to build a nuclear weapon without being detected, the officials said. In return, Iran will receive modest relief of trade sanctions and access to some of its frozen currency accounts overseas, concessions said to be valued at less than $7 billion over the six-month term of the deal. The sanctions would be reinstated if Iran violates the agreement’s terms.

Put this one in the Obama Legacy "plus" column. Kerry also gets credit. You could argue that he's a better SecState than Hillary.

 

"Transparency and the rule of law will be the touchstones of this presidency."

--Barack Obama, January 2009

I would so argue

(#311198)

In fact, I don't see how you can argue the opposite.  The trust-building, incrementalist and verification aspects are key.

 

Obama owes Kerry more than anyone for his popularity surge. He should have given him the job as soon as he took office.

After the Iran deal, Mr Obama's MEFP touches new heights

(#311110)
mmghosh's picture

- extremely impressive to have handled Libya, Syria, the Arab Spring and now Iran with so much success.  Now to defuse AfPak and the drones, and all will be - relatively - well.

Iran has struck a historic agreement with the US and five other world powers, accepting strict constraints on its nuclear programme for the first time in a decade in exchange for partial relief from sanctions.

The deal, signed at 4.30am on Sunday morning, marks arguably the most significant foreign policy achievement of Barack Obama's presidency, amounting to the most significant agreement between Washington and Tehran since the 1979 Iranian revolution.

The move is intended as the first step in a six-month process aimed at a permanent resolution to the decade-old global impasse over Iran's nuclear programme, and heading off the threat of a new war in the Middle East.

"While today's announcement is just a first step, it achieves a great deal," President Obama said in an address to the nation from the White House. "For the first time in nearly a decade, we have halted the progress of the Iranian nuclear programme, and key parts of the programme will be rolled back."

freedom is a fundamental value that does not need to be justified in terms of some other value like efficiency

Eeyn will be along in a minute

(#311112)

to explain why Libya and the Arab spring arent successes, but I'll go ahead and guess he's happy to thaw things out with Iran.

 

I know fans of war aren't happy, like McCain, but my question is whether fans of high oil prices will eat it too. Shouldnt we see a drop in crude now?

There are a lot of militants in the ME killing their enemies

(#311132)
mmghosh's picture

and destroying important stuff, but the greatest thing that Mr Obama could have done is not to inject more dollars, guns, drones and helicopter gunships than there are already there into the mix.  

 

Let Middle Eastern religious fanatics - Shia, Sunni, Edmund Levy, Allawis etc sort each other out.

freedom is a fundamental value that does not need to be justified in terms of some other value like efficiency

Lower oil prices?

(#311118)
Jay C's picture

Probably not by much: if international crude prices have been bolstered up by the sanctions-based absence of Iranian crude on the market, it would not make a lot of sense for Iran to want to start dumping a lot on the market; but rather to ramp up any increased production slowly to get the maximum price.

 

Of course, I could be wrong: anybody with more-detailed familiarity with the world oil market should feel free to correct me....

The price is driven

(#311123)

by what people think the supply will be,  more than actual supply. 

Also by uncertainty. Kind of like insurance,

(#311125)

futures trading operates according to the model that uncertainty = risk = cost. That's why war, instability and conflict (any change, really) tend to produce spikes in price.

"Hell is truth seen too late." --Thomas Hobbes

When uncertainty about conflict in the Gulf Region goes up

(#311120)

so do oil prices.

 

That means they should go down when Iran and the US strike a deal, especially one that could increase Iranian supply long term.

 

So ... unless the market has already priced in a successful deal, they should fall today. Right?

Not "today", it's Sunday.....

(#311122)
Jay C's picture

... but I wouldn't be surprised to see some sort of drop (I'm guessing it won't be dramatic, though) when markets open. Since the Geneva deal seems to be a major surprise, it's unlikely the market has "priced in" much.

 

Also: ISTR that a lot of Iranian oil production is (or was??) locked up in long-term deals with China, so the market effects of increased production and sales wouldn't be drastic. (?)

that was really very american centric of you jay c

(#311141)

The 21st century is the asian century after all, you should get more used to it.

Oil dropped in the asian markets tday, though not as much as I was thinking.

Ok, American-centric...

(#311146)
Jay C's picture

... but humble about it! See? Even though the axis of the universe actually DOES run through the East Side of Manhattan*, I was self-effacing enough to add my disclaimer to  # 311118! And how many blog-commenters do that???

 

But yes, oil (and oil-product) markets are different everywhere: here, I don't think the Iran deal will have as much effect on prices as the winter weather (as it usually does) - retail prices for gasoline/heating oil (and/or natural gas) are driven by a lot of factors: world prices being only one (albeit a major excuse)

 

*Data may be disputed: observations are subject to numerous relativity factors

Well, Sunday where you are ...

(#311124)

.

Thanks!

(#311117)

I don't like to get up early on Sunday morning and it's good to have someone competent covering for me.  Stay on the foreign policy and civil liberties though,  I think I'd rather handle the economic side personally until you've been more properly trained.

 

Obama does deserve a lot of credit here (if it holds up).  Not only did he do something good, he did it in the face of strong opposition from many of his own party's senior senators,  and he showed willingness to pay a stiff political price if necessary.  He's almost acting like a mature, responsible leader or something.  

 

The stuff covered by the interim agreement is minor, as is the sanctions relief, but the main point is that the immediate pressure for war is off.  Netanyahu will fume but I strongly doubt he will launch an attack on his own.

 

There's no need to explain why Libya and the Arab spring aren't successes,  and I also don't agree with Manish putting Syria on the list.   The crisis Kerry created got defused by the Russians.

Mr Kerry wast thinking one move ahead

(#311135)

of Mr. Putin.  No extra dimensions required.

I was contemptuous of his Munich Godwin phrasing initally too.  Not anymore.  Consider this:

- It's out of character for Kerry to use so lame, trite an inappropriate a comparison;

- Putin is likely to confuse the motives of superfically warmorgering Americans spouting the same nonsense for very different reasons;

- Syrian intervention is Obama's call, not Kerry's;

- Refusing to intervene outright would have strengthened both Putin and Assad;

- There's an important precedent to be set for not tolerating chemical weapon use;

- Kerry worked out an impressive agreement in Afganistan while still a Senator.

- The most lopsided standoff in the history of American politics, including fatal duels, was the first 2004 Presidential debate, centered on Foreign policy.  OK he was facing a nincompoop, but Kerry showed he knows a thing or two about casus belli.

- It worked.  Putin had much to lose from the US helping rebels topple Assad.

If Kerry were "thinking ahead",

(#311147)
Bird Dog's picture

then press flacks in the State Department wouldn't have been immediately trying to defuse his remarks by calling them a "rhetorical argument" and "hypothetical", and I guess Jon Stewart had it all wrong.

 

 

But Kerry does get credit for hammering out deals with Iran and Karzai.

"Transparency and the rule of law will be the touchstones of this presidency."

--Barack Obama, January 2009

Stewart gets a number of things wrong

(#311153)

the trillion-dollar platinum coin thing being the worst of them.  Just because he leans liberal and overwhelmingly knocks conservatives does not make him infalliable.

 

His aides had the tricky task of avoiding derision and alarmism at home without undercutting Kerry's positioning abroad.  Maybe Obama started worrying Kerry's words were too Rumsfeldian.  Or that Putin would think the US was intervening regardless of what he would do.

 

It seems odd to me that Kerry could show such diplomatic skill in hammering out those deals while being so tone-deaf with his rhetoric.  But of course everyone says stupid things at least once in a while.

 

As eeyn said, we won't know what was really going on for a while.

OK, we'll have to wait until after 2016

(#311142)

for the memoirs to come out - not Kerry's,  but some high level aide who witnessed the whole thing - to see if your scenario is true.   We should be able to agree that if it was game of chicken, it was a very dangerous one.

 

Putin had much to lose from the US helping rebels topple Assad.

 

We had much to lose by toppling Assad,  also,

 

 

Mr Kerry was playing 11-D chess. nt

(#311134)
mmghosh's picture

-

freedom is a fundamental value that does not need to be justified in terms of some other value like efficiency

Youth unemployment is not a crisis, says reuters columnist

(#311109)

Why? Because:

 

The larger point is that many college-educated young people are choosing not to take low-paying service-level jobs if they don’t absolutely have to. Because they can live with their parents (and as many as 45 percent of recent grads do) and because they rarely have much in the way of fixed costs such as homes and children, they can hold out for a job that matches their ambitions. They can also retool their skills as they discover that their college degree in marketing and communications may not leave them in the best position to get the type of job that they want.

 

This type of unemployment is one of choice — rational, legitimate choice — not of systemic failure. It is a challenge to find a meaningful job, but that hasn’t stopped people from trying. A youth cohort determined to create meaningful work should not be seen as lazy, lost or in dire straits. Instead it could be exactly the type who might actually lead the transition of our economy away from the making-stuff economy of the 20th century to an ideas economy of the 21st.

 

Today's youth didn't choose to have fewer and much worse options than previous generations, but they're still choosing among those options!

 

It may be true that our higher education system no longer functions to impart useful skills for gaining employment. But we have replaced that with unstructured learning time in one's old bedroom in one's 20s!

 

This is another in a long string of coincidences I've had since my early teens whereby the very stupidest things I read about economics and politics in the press just happen to align with the interests of the wealthy.

 

Also, this guy is a Harvard PhD, probably coming out of a department like the one that awarded a PhD to the AEI guy who wrote about how Hispanics are dumber than whites (Richwine was his name, I believe). I see "Harvard PhD" next to someone commenting on politics these days and think: probably an idiot.

City of San Rafael bans smoking inside one's own apartment

(#311108)

Is this populous Bay Area suburb implementing nanny state liberal fascism or commonsense? 

 

We report, you decide.

Nanny state liberal fascism

(#311126)

of course,  but in the way I imagine it would be enforced,  not all that bad.

 

Probably the reason for the police to show up would be a person on the other side of the wall who filed a complaint about the smell,  and if they can smell it,  I would agree that the smoker needs to either stop or work harder at sealing up the vents.

 

BTW, is it limited to smoking tobacco?   At the rate things are going it could get to where it's legal to buy, sell, and possess marijuana but there's no place legal to smoke it.

I knew, I just always knew you were an authoritarian

(#311158)

Actually, the way I imagine it being enforced is the smell of cigarette smoke will establish probable cause for entry and further search citing exigent circumstances, can't have folks flushing the butts.  Who knows?  I'd love to believe my imagination is overwrought but what I think will be the case is that your imagination will be right most of the time while mine will be right too often.  Imagine that.

Anyway, isn't this really an issue for civil court? 

 

In the medical community, death is known as Chuck Norris Syndrome. 

Asian wages, Asian end of life care.

(#311101)
mmghosh's picture

We all know how that's going to work out.  Incidentally, quite a few people I know are moving from England to "where the jobs are" - teaching English, mostly.  Is that a trend in South Korea too?  Or do they have good Korean English speakers?  I assume that latter because of the close historical connection with the US and the Korean community there.

freedom is a fundamental value that does not need to be justified in terms of some other value like efficiency

Scott Walker is unsure

(#311085)

about whether or not he is favor of torture: "“I don’t spend enough time or have a knowledge base to comment.”

 

Not to excuse Walker at all,  but as Friedersdorf points out,  part of the reason he can get away with having this opinion is that our current president is against torture as a personal policy preference but doesn't really see it as a crime that you prosecute people for.

Causation, correlation, etc

(#311081)

As BD reported earlier:

Vancouver bans door knobs

And now this:

Public masturbation on the rise in Vancouver

 

 

Is this a bizarrology competition?

(#311098)
mmghosh's picture

I submit the "knockout game".

freedom is a fundamental value that does not need to be justified in terms of some other value like efficiency

Not the first time Biden came up short

(#311080)
Bird Dog's picture

A couple of days ago:

Vice President Biden was happy to buy a group lunch Thursday from a Delaware-based sandwich shop chain that just opened a place in Washington, D.C.

Just one problem: The veep didn't quite have enough cash.

Told the bill would be $56.25, Biden pulled out a wad of money, calculated it, and then turned to an aide:

"Fran, you got ten bucks?"

Three years ago:

Bounced Joe Biden Check Still Taped Up In Delaware Liquor Store

 

"Transparency and the rule of law will be the touchstones of this presidency."

--Barack Obama, January 2009

Joesph -nt

(#311082)

.

Plus HSBC Wasn't HSBC Until 1998

(#311186)

According to the 'pedia.

Morans...

(#311176)

...again.

This was clear enough to Larkin, whose patriotism rested on the notion that England was the worst place on earth with the possible exception of everywhere else.

its from the onion

(#311178)

obviously.

“The single biggest problem in communication is the illusion that it has taken place.” -George Bernard Shaw

Why is cocaine measured in metric units?

(#311077)

A puzzle:

 

The arrest of Representative Trey Radel (R-Fla.) for purchasing 3.5 grams of cocaine brings to mind one of the longstanding puzzles of American commerce. How is it that cocaine is sold by metric units while almost every other commodity in America is sold in imperial measurements?

 

It's particularly mysterious because the 3.5 gram quantity of cocaine is colloquially known as an "eight ball" because 3.5 grams is approximately one-eighth of an ounce.

Nose candy has always been metric

(#311116)
Jay C's picture

Probably because the basic unit-of-sale - the smallest practicable amount - is the gram:  various larger sale quantities can be scaled up in easy multiples: 3-1/2, 7, 14 28. Though why the largest normal "street" sale is denominated in the 28-gram ounce is still a mystery. Jusxt another reason to go metric, I guess....   

Personally, I vote we go with grains.

(#311179)

The problem is that folks will think "gr" stands for gram. Disappointment follows and then people get shot. Not a good thing overall but it would be nice to see apothecary weights used again.

In the medical community, death is known as Chuck Norris Syndrome.