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No one but the author bears any responsibility for the non-advertising content on this blog. AND PLEASE NOTE: the author neither necessarily uses nor endorses any product advertised on this blog.

July 17, 2014

"Chrome Is Ruining Your Windows Laptop Battery"

I like Chrome, but I don't use it on a laptop. Until this is fixed, I won't.

"We Tried The 4 New Lay's Potato Chip Flavors — Here's The Verdict"

Cheddar Bacon Mac & Cheese "received unanimously positive reviews" but that was only good enought for second.

"Stovetop/Oven to Crockpot Conversion Chart"

"If you love your crockpot like I do, here is some useful information that will help you take even better advantage of it. A handy chart for converting your favorite traditional recipes to crockpot meals!"

July 16, 2014

"It's Not Your Imagination: The Government Really Is Worse Than Ever"

Fiscal Times, summaring work by Paul Light, Senior Fellow at Brookings Institution:

Using data drawn from news archives, Light identified government failures dating back to 1986 and found that major problems occurred at a rate 1.6 per year until 2001 – nearly doubling in the years afterward, to 3.0. 

It appears to be getting even worse. President Obama may have had fewer major failures than his immediate predecessors have, but as Light points out, his second term isn’t over yet. “At its current pace, government still has plenty of time to set a record average before Obama leaves office in 2017.”

Of course, Professor Light blames the Republicans for this. They have been, allegedly, "willing to vandalize federal programs in service of an ideology that believes smaller government is better government." I, on the other hand, trust the old adage, "The first thing to do when you're in a hole is to stop digging."

(And note I posted on Monday, "Government, particularly the federal government, doesn't work as well now." Score one for me.)

"Do We Need ESSP?"

Another fine article by Arnold Kling.

Watts' book can be regarded as an extended argument in favor of what I might term Epistemological Skepticism about Social Phenomena, or ESSP. Those of us with ESSP believe that we should be skeptical about how much we can know with certainty in the fields known as the social sciences. We may learn things that are true for a majority of cases under specific circumstances. But we are less likely to find perfectly reliable, broadly applicable laws comparable to those found by physicists.

The opposite of believing in ESSP is what Friedrich Hayek termed "scientism." Scientism is a belief that social phenomena can be understood in a scientific manner. It is the belief that we should be able to explain and predict social outcomes on the basis of simple, powerful, verifiable universal principles.

"Bama, cised, lunchin: these are some of the terms native to D.C."

My older daughter, a D.C. public school teacher, vouches for the list

"11 Badass Alternatives To Bro Country That You Need In Your Life"

Presented as a public service to the country music fans among my readers.

July 15, 2014

"Taylor Swift doesn't understand supply and demand"

That's O.K., Ms. Swift: not enough people do.

The Wall Street Journal just published an amazing essay from Taylor Swift, in which she argues that the music industry is not dying, but in fact "just coming alive."

Based on this piece, there are many reasons to believe that Taylor Swift has not been paying very much attention to the music industry.

"Fair Trade is Fraud. And Getting Worse."

Professor Munger issues a noteworthy smackdown:

FairTrade does not help the people it claims to help. . . . It does, however, give rich white people a chance to feel good about themselves, at a convenient price.

"The Invisible Economy Our techniques for measuring economic performance are obsolete, obscuring a complete picture of how we're faring."

I think economists would be virtually unanimous in agreeing that this is a serious problem.

However, finding a good solution is really difficult.

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