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Ranking Manmade Catastrophes

If the worst case scenario of Global Warming were to come about, how would its effects compare with other examples of real and imagined manmade catastrophes?

Would its effects be worse than war?

Would the people of Venezuela be worse off as a result of Global Warming as compared with the effects of the political and economic policies of President Hugo Chavez?

Would Global Warming be worse than devoting 20-50% of the US corn crop to the production of ethanol fuel? Read more »

Where Your Tax Dollar Goes

From Terror Porn

Lots of small towns do get absurd grants for homeland security. Lake County, Tenn., a rural county with only 8,000 people, got nearly $200,000 in homeland-security money. …”I don’t know that terrorists will come, but I don’t know they won’t come,” Lake County Mayor Macie Roberson told us, smiling.

At least he didn’t do what Columbus, Ohio did: spend it on bulletproof vests for police dogs.

Urban Congestion Pricing

Driving in many cities is almost impossible because of the congestion.

However, in this hypothetical case, I'm referring to driving to the basket on a city playground free public basketball court. Shooting a three-pointer isn't much better with a 50% chance of your shot being blocked by someone else's shot.

You've got your new basketball, but how can you expect to win a college basketball scholarship without an unimpeded chance to practice?

Clearly we have an economic problem of too much demand for the available supply. Read more »

Exam Grading Examples

Why Britain Doesn\'t Need the EU

If anyone thought that Britain needed to fully join the EU in order to enjoy the entertainment value of the EU's tax and regulation regime, this indicates that Britain is likely fully self-sufficient in providing this public good. Read more »

Global Humming

Does This Sound Familiar?

"What about all those hieroglyphic inscriptions?"

"Bumper stickers, Lagos called them. Corrupt political speech. They had an unfortunate tendency to write inscriptions praising their own military victories before the battles had actually taken place."

--- pg 215, Snow Crash, Neal Stephenson

Tons of Cash

Chairman Waxman Follows the Money

Henry Waxman, the veteran Representative who now chairs the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, is following the money trail of $12 billion in shrink-wrapped $100 bills from the U.S. treasury that Bush's cronies shipped to the "Green Zone" in Baghdad between May 2003 and June 2004. The 363 tons of cash was stacked on wooden pallets, loaded onto C-130 transport planes, and shipped into the middle of a war zone.

Random Acts of Tyranny

From the Boston Globe:

Passport rule change in US keeps Iraqis out
By Farah Stockman, Globe Staff | February 7, 2007

WASHINGTON -- The US government last month stopped accepting all but the latest version of Iraqi passports, effectively barring hundreds -- potentially thousands -- of Iraqis with valid US visas from entering the United States, including some students at Boston-area universities. [...]

From Comments

Missing Headline

Note, by the way, that it's only the southern polar ice sheet that matters in this context. The North polar ice doesn't have any land supporting, so is already displacing its weight in sea water.

Seduced by Terminology

True or False?

In some parts of the country (LA?), gasoline prices are posted to a tenth of a cent per gallon.

Denying Denial

The European Union Once Again Demonstrates Its Tendency To Make Itself a Laughingstock

EU plans far-reaching 'genocide denial' law
By Bruno Waterfield
Last Updated: 2:03am GMT 02/02/2007

People who question the official history of recent conflicts in Africa and the Balkans could be jailed for up to three years for "genocide denial", under proposed EU legislation.

Disincentives Matter

What is the marginal penalty for any crimes-against-humanity after the first?

When Spellcheck Fails


Archaeologists discover ancient hosing settlement near Stonehenge