Create an Account
username: password:
  MemeStreams Logo

Post Haste


possibly noteworthy
Picture of possibly noteworthy
My Blog
My Profile
My Audience
My Sources
Send Me a Message

sponsored links

possibly noteworthy's topics
Health and Wellness
Home and Garden
Current Events
  War on Terrorism
Local Information
  International Relations
  Politics and Law
   Intellectual Property
  Military Technology
  High Tech Developments

support us

Get MemeStreams Stuff!

Current Topic: Society

Economics Is Not a Natural Science
Topic: Society 8:12 am EDT, Sep  9, 2009

Douglas Rushkoff:

We must stop perpetuating the fiction that existence itself is dictated by the immutable laws of economics. These so-called laws are, in actuality, the economic mechanisms of 13th Century monarchs. Some of us analyzing digital culture and its impact on business must reveal economics as the artificial construction it really is. Although it may be subjected to the scientific method and mathematical scrutiny, it is not a natural science; it is game theory, with a set of underlying assumptions that have little to do with anything resembling genetics, neurology, evolution, or natural systems.

George Dyson:

How to best transcend the current economic mess? Put Jeff Bezos, Pierre Omidyar, Elon Musk, Tim O'Reilly, Larry Page, Sergey Brin, Nathan Myhrvold, and Danny Hillis in a room somewhere and don't let them out until they have framed a new, massively-distributed financial system, founded on sound, open, peer-to-peer principles, from the start. And don't call it a bank.

Benjamin Friedman:

It is time for some serious discussion of what our financial system is actually delivering to our economy and what it costs to do that.

Nathan Myhrvold:

I was describing this to a friend over lunch in Palo Alto. As I was describing this the waiter came up behind me to take our order. I was in the middle of saying "it's very hard to enter the rectum, but once you do things move much faster", only to hear the waiter gasp. Whoops. I tried to explain saying "well, this is about" but with a horrified look he said "I do NOT want to know what this is about! Some people are just not interested in natural history, I guess.

Stewart Brand:

In some cultures you're supposed to be responsible out to the seventh generation -- that's about 200 years. But it goes right against self-interest.

John Cochrane:

It is very comforting in times of stress to go back to the fairy tales we heard as children, but it doesn't make them less false.

Economics Is Not a Natural Science

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 t... [ Read More (0.3k in body) ]

How Different Groups Spend Their Day
Topic: Society 7:57 am EDT, Aug  3, 2009

The American Time Use Survey asks thousands of American residents to recall every minute of a day. Here is how people over age 15 spent their time in 2008.

Explore the differences among the animated tabs.

Paul Graham:

You can't write or program well in units of an hour. That's barely enough time to get started.

Nir Rosen:

"You Westerners have your watches," the leader observed. "But we Taliban have time."

Pico Iyer:

It seems that happiness, like peace or passion, comes most freely when it isn't pursued.

I have no bicycle, no car, no television I can understand, no media -- and the days seem to stretch into eternities, and I can't think of a single thing I lack.

Curtis White:

Perhaps the most powerful way in which we conspire against ourselves is the simple fact that we have jobs.

Zak Ryman:

I think a lot of people don't have time to Twitter.

It just takes too long to compose a message with 140 characters, and then you start getting bombarded by a few tweets and it's like, hundreds of characters that you have to read.

How Different Groups Spend Their Day

How The Average U.S. Consumer Spends Their Annual Paycheck
Topic: Society 8:04 am EDT, Jul 10, 2009

Brought to you by the Department of Labor:

Reading: $118
"Entertainment": $2,698

John Lanchester:

If I had to name one high-cultural notion that had died in my adult lifetime, it would be the idea that difficulty is artistically desirable.

Motoko Rich:

As teenagers' scores on standardized reading tests have declined or stagnated, some argue that the hours spent prowling the Internet are the enemy of reading -- diminishing literacy, wrecking attention spans and destroying a precious common culture that exists only through the reading of books.

But others say the Internet has created a new kind of reading, one that schools and society should not discount.

How The Average U.S. Consumer Spends Their Annual Paycheck

Is There Hope for the American Marriage?
Topic: Society 8:04 am EDT, Jul 10, 2009

Caitlin Flanagan:

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported in May that births to unmarried women have reached an astonishing 39.7%.

How much does this matter? More than words can say.

Nora Johnson:

In our unending search for panaceas, we believe that happiness and "success" -- which, loosely translated, means money -- are the things to strive for. People are constantly surprised that, even though they have acquired material things, discontent still gnaws.

Have you seen "Revolutionary Road"?

Hopeless emptiness. Now you've said it. Plenty of people are onto the emptiness, but it takes real guts to see the hopelessness.

Is There Hope for the American Marriage?

Infrastructure for Souls
Topic: Society 8:06 am EDT, Jun 30, 2009

Joseph Clarke:

Tracing the parallel histories of the American megachurch and the corporate-organizational complex.

Steve Bellovin et al:

Architecture matters a lot, and in subtle ways.

Peter Drucker:

Managers have to learn to ask every few years of every process, every product, every procedure, every policy: "If we did not do this already, would we go into it now knowing what we now know?" If the answer is no, the organization has to ask, "So what do we do now?" And it has to do something, and not say, "Let's make another study."

William Whyte:

The fault is not in organization, in short; it is in our worship of it. It is in our vain quest for a utopian equilibrium, which would be horrible if it ever did come to pass; it is in the soft-minded denial that there is a conflict between the individual and society. There must always be, and it is the price of being an individual that he must face these conflicts. He cannot evade them, and in seeking an ethic that offers a spurious peace of mind, thus does he tyrannize himself.

Paul Graham:

If you're not allowed to implement new ideas, you stop having them.

Paul Bloom on Robert Wright:

God has mellowed.

Infrastructure for Souls

A (Radical) Way to Fix Suburban Sprawl
Topic: Society 11:28 am EDT, Jun 14, 2009

Lisa Selin Davis:

There's something deeply wrong with Tysons Corner.

Nate Silver:

Perhaps the only good thing about losing your job is that you no longer have to endure the drive to work.

Verlyn Klinkenborg:

Driving is the cultural anomaly of our moment.

Louis Menand:

The interstates changed the phenomenology of driving.

Louis Kahn:

In his plan for midtown Philadelphia he attempted to press the forms of Piranesi's Rome of 1762 into the service of the modern city. In this, expressways were thought as "rivers" and the traffic-light controlled streets as "canals." Kahn was conscious of the profound antipathy between the automobile and the city and of the fatal link between consumerism, the suburban shopping center and the decline of the urban core. He proposed a "dock" solution (1956) comprising a 6-story cylindrical silo housing 1,500 cars and surrounded on its perimeter by 18-story blocks that was deprived of elements at a human scale.

Amy Gardner:

A construction crew putting up an office building in the heart of Tysons Corner a few years ago hit a fiber optic cable no one knew was there.

Within moments, three black sport-utility vehicles drove up, a half-dozen men in suits jumped out and one said, "You just hit our line."

Walk Score:

Walk Score shows you a map of what's nearby and calculates a Walk Score for any property. Buying a house in a walkable neighborhood is good for your health and good for the environment.

Christopher Leinberger:

It’s not a matter of waiting for two or three years to absorb the overproduction. It’s a matter of drastically reducing real estate prices to well below replacement cost. And when you sell something for below replacement cost – that might sound like, well, “Somebody takes a hit but life goes on as usual.” No, life doesn’t go on. For the owners of that retail or housing space, every dollar that they invest will be money they don’t get back. That is another definition of a slum. There’s no incentive to invest in a slum. So here you are.

A (Radical) Way to Fix Suburban Sprawl

The Hope Chest
Topic: Society 8:03 am EDT, Jun  9, 2009

A blog by Clifford J. Doerksen:

My current research has me looking through microfilmed tabloid newspapers of the 1930s. My progress is greatly impeded by my inability to scroll past unrelated “human interest” stories, most of them tiny nightmares like something out of Nathanael West’s Miss Lonelyhearts (which you should read immediately if you haven’t already). Anyway, I’ve started this blog as a place to memorialize these spectral and transient tragedies.

The Hope Chest

How to Teach a Child to Argue
Topic: Society 8:18 am EDT, Jun  4, 2009

Jay Heinrichs:

Why would any sane parent teach his kids to talk back? Because, this father found, it actually increased family harmony.

1. Argue to teach decision-making.
2. Focus on the future.
3. Call “fouls.”
4. Reward the right emotions.
5. Let kids win sometimes.

Paul Graham:

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

Michael Lopp:

You should pick a fight, because bright people often yell at each other.

David Foster Wallace:

If you've never wept and want to, have a child.

How to Teach a Child to Argue

In Vino Veritas: I'll Drink to That
Topic: Society 8:18 am EDT, Jun  4, 2009

Roger Scruton:

An intoxicating drink, which both slides down easily and warms as it goes, is a symbol of — and also a means to achieve — an inward transformation, in which a person takes something in to himself. The religious use of wine and its soul-transforming effect reflect the underlying truth that it is only rational beings who can appreciate things like wine. Animals can be drunk. They can be high on drugs and fuggy with cannabis, but they cannot experience the kind of directed intoxication that we experience through wine, since relishing is something that only a rational being can exhibit, and which therefore only a rational being can do.

At some level, I venture to suggest, the experience of wine is a recuperation of that original cult whereby the land was settled and the city built. And what we taste in the wine is not just the fruit and its ferment, but also the peculiar flavour of a landscape to which the gods have been invited and where they have found a home.


Paul Graham asks what living in your city tells you. Living in the north Perimeter area for 6 odd years now has told me that everybody makes way, way more money than I do. It's not inspiring so much as it makes you sympathize with class warfare.

In Vino Veritas: I'll Drink to That

(Last) Newer << 1 - 2 - 3 - 4 - 5 - 6 - 7 - 8 ++ 18 >> Older (First)
Powered By Industrial Memetics