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The Cruel Irony of Risk


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The Cruel Irony of Risk
Topic: Society 9:47 pm EDT, Aug 18, 2009

Decius, from yesterday:

Hold on to your hats.

Yves Smith:

I don't believe in market calls, and trying to time turns is a perilous game. But most savvy people I know have been skeptical of this rally, beyond the initial strong bounce off the bottom. It has not had the characteristics of a bull market. In addition, this one has had some troubling features. Most notable has been the almost insistent media cheerleading, particularly from atypical venues for that sort of thing, like Bloomberg.

Amy Miller Bohn:

Because of the increase in degree of difficulty in cheerleading skills, increased acrobatics and stunt activities may be increasing the risk of severity of injury.

There are often no supportive surfaces to shield them from falls.

Participants also lack adequate supervision. If an adequately trained coach is not present to ensure participants are using proper techniques and make sure spotters are placed where they should, injuries may occur.

What can be done to help prevent injuries?

A spring loaded floor is a good idea to prevent injuries and to cushion a fall. Mats are also important.

Dateline Texas, from a few years ago:

Texas is famous for its Dallas Cowboys cheerleaders, who perform in high boots and low-cut tops.

Some lawmakers have expressed outrage at similarly suggestive performances at local schools across the state.

"Some of them are just downright vulgar."

"You've got children seeing things that their parents would rather them not see."

From Wikipedia last year, courtesy of Palindrome:

Radical cheerleading is a form of cheerleading that originated in Florida, but has now spread across the United States as well as Canada, Europe and beyond. The idea is to ironically reappropriate the aesthetics of cheerleading, for example by changing the chants to promote feminism and left-wing causes. Many radical cheerleaders are in appearance far from the stereotypical image of a cheerleader.

D. Graham Burnett and Jeffrey Andrew Dolven:

Irony is a powerful and incompletely understood feature of human dynamics. A technique for dissimulation and "secret speech," irony is considerably more complex than lying and even more dangerous.

A quick dip into the infinite summer:

"The truth is nobody can always tell, Boo. Some types are just too good, too complex and idiosyncratic; their lies are too close to the truth's heart for you to tell."


"You remember my hideous phobic thing about monsters, as a kid?"

"Boy do I ever."

"Boo, I think I no longer believe in monsters as faces in the floor or feral infants or vampires or whatever. I think at seventeen now I believe the only real monsters might be the type of liar where there's simply no way to tell. The ones who give nothing away."

"But then how do you know they're monsters, then?"

"That's monstrosity right there, Boo, I'm starting to think."

"Golly Ned."

"That they walk among us. Teach our children. Inscrutable. Brass-faced."

H.P. Lovecraft:

From the greatest of horrors irony is seldom absent.

Paul Graham:

I'm not saying we should stop, but I think we should at least examine which lies we tell and why.

From a year ago:

American authorities may be deluding themselves into believing they can forestall the endgame of post-bubble adjustments.

Rory Stewart, recently:

Americans are particularly unwilling to believe that problems are insoluble.

John Lanchester:

It's becoming traditional at this point to argue that perhaps the financial crisis will be good for us, because it will cause people to rediscover other sources of value. I suspect this is wishful thinking, or thinking about something which is quite a long way away, because it doesn't consider just how angry people are going to get when they realize the extent of the costs we are going to carry for the next few decades.

A final thought from the bankers:

Revolutionize your heart out. We'll still have this country by the balls.

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