Thursday Highlights

Good morning.

  1. So are these straw arguments … or are there really people in the world who don’t exercise because they think its bad for you?
  2. The consensus “experts” keep talking about peak oil … and keep being proven wrong.
  3. Difficulties with Mr Solzhenitsyn (and language).
  4. Mr Obama and the information asymmetry problem.
  5. Computer metaphors come to life.
  6. This is not unrelated.
  7. So, if you’re not using your liver, can I, uhm, kill you for it?
  8. A knotty writing problem.
  9. GOP campaign ads coming out.
  10. Manual labor and growing up.
  11. More on those millionares not paying their share.
  12. What was she saying?
  13. Good whiskey and the Trinity.
  14. Well, I didn’t get past “Tea party treason” … huh? What the heck is that? Belief in smaller government is treason. That’s, uhm, not exactly a “moderate voice” dude. Dumb perhaps, but not moderate.

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5 comments

  1. So are these straw arguments … or are there really people in the world who don’t exercise because they think its bad for you?

    I’d say they’re (mostly) dumb arguments, but I don’t see the author implying that people don’t exercise because they think it’s bad for you. I do think that the trend towards marathoning, ironman triathlons, and other “extreme” events is possibly dangerous. I’ll go through them, just because:

    10. Exercise is addictive

    A problem for a tiny minority of people, who would probably be otherwise addicted to something less healthy anyway.

    9. Exercise Hurts The Heart

    This is actually the best argument, in that it seems like marathoning, etc. really is bad for your heart. Moderation is probably called for, and perhaps we as a society should start focusing more on 5Ks, 10Ks, and 10 milers.

    8. Exercise is associated with body perception disorders.

    Classic confusion of cause and correlation.

    7. Exercise can break up families.

    So can literally any activity.

    6. Exercise can cause diabetes.

    No, it can’t.

    5. Exercise destroys diets.

    Highly doubtful. It increases calorie consumption, but that need not be unhealthy.

    4. Exercise causes inflammation.

    His reasoning of why this is such a big deal sounds like woo-woo BS, but who knows?

    3. Exercise is stressful.

    In moderation, it greatly reduces stress.

    2. Exercise damages the joints.

    Only some exercises do this.

    1. Exercise causes premature aging.

    Again, only if you overdo it. Otherwise, it extends life.

  2. The consensus “experts” keep talking about peak oil … and keep being proven wrong.

    What consensus are you referring to, specifically? I don’t think you know what that word means.

    Difficulties with Mr Solzhenitsyn (and language).

    Interesting regarding our conversation last night: I “know” languagehat quite well from his comments on MetaFilter. He’s quite the liberal. Why is it that both you and he admire Solzhenitsyn but come to such different political philosophies?

    Mr Obama and the information asymmetry problem.

    Did you just skip over the parts where he says that Obama is very smart, something you have questioned repeatedly? The rest of the post is basically a version of trickle-down theory.

    More on those millionares not paying their share.

    Perfect example of how getting your information from the bubble (in this case, News Busters, founded by conservatives and devoted to “correcting” a perceived liberal bias in the media — in other words, a propaganda organization) wildly skews your perception of reality.

    Looking at the Adjusted Gross Income misses the whole point! The point is all the income that doesn’t get categorized that way.

    So, the reality is, millionaires don’t pay their share, but your belief is that they do. Do you see how that might be problematic?

    Here’s the nonpartisan PolitiFact, if you’re interested in actually understanding:

    [W]e checked Buffett’s statement that the “mega-rich” pay about 15 percent in taxes, while the middle class “fall into the 15 percent and 25 percent income tax brackets, and then are hit with heavy payroll taxes to boot.” We rated the statement True.

    Here’s how it’s possible that Buffett paid a lower tax rate than his employees. Basically, most of Buffett’s income comes from capital gains and dividends, income from investments he makes with the money he already has. Income earned by buying and selling stocks or from stock dividends is generally taxed at 15 percent, the rate for long-term capital gains and qualified dividends.

    Buffett also mentioned that some of the “mega-rich” are hedge fund managers “who earn billions from our daily labors but are allowed to classify our income as ‘carried interest,’ thereby getting a bargain 15 percent tax rate.”

  3. The consensus “experts” keep talking about peak oil … and keep being proven wrong.

    What consensus are you referring to, specifically? I don’t think you know what that word means.

    Difficulties with Mr Solzhenitsyn (and language).

    Interesting regarding our conversation last night: I “know” languagehat quite well from his comments on MetaFilter. He’s quite the liberal. Why is it that both you and he admire Solzhenitsyn but come to such different political philosophies?

    Mr Obama and the information asymmetry problem.

    Did you just skip over the parts where he says that Obama is very smart, something you have questioned repeatedly? The rest of the post is basically a version of trickle-down theory.

    More on those millionares not paying their share.

    Perfect example of how getting your information from the bubble (in this case, News Busters, founded by conservatives and devoted to “correcting” a perceived liberal bias in the media — in other words, a propaganda organization) wildly skews your perception of reality.

    Looking at the Adjusted Gross Income misses the whole point! The point is all the income that doesn’t get categorized that way.

    So, the reality is, millionaires don’t pay their share, but your belief is that they do. Do you see how that might be problematic?

    Here’s the nonpartisan PolitiFact, if you’re interested in actually understanding:

    [W]e checked Buffett’s statement that the “mega-rich” pay about 15 percent in taxes, while the middle class “fall into the 15 percent and 25 percent income tax brackets, and then are hit with heavy payroll taxes to boot.” We rated the statement True.

    Here’s how it’s possible that Buffett paid a lower tax rate than his employees. Basically, most of Buffett’s income comes from capital gains and dividends, income from investments he makes with the money he already has. Income earned by buying and selling stocks or from stock dividends is generally taxed at 15 percent, the rate for long-term capital gains and qualified dividends.

    Buffett also mentioned that some of the “mega-rich” are hedge fund managers “who earn billions from our daily labors but are allowed to classify our income as ‘carried interest,’ thereby getting a bargain 15 percent tax rate.”

  4. Mark says:

    JA,
    On the exercise, I’m happy to say time in my life has arranged itself so I’m getting back to working out. I’m not aiming (yet) at returning to racing so I’m biking for fitness and returning to the weight room (which I did quite seriously before I started biking. In grad school for a bit I was in the gym 6 days a week twice a day (45 minutes) and got to a max bench of 230 at a weight of 155, which seemed pretty respectable to me at the time). Cross your (my?) fingers, but so far I’m getting about 10 hours a week working out which is far far better than 3-ish.

    The “NewsBusters site” quoted that right wing think tank, the “Brookings Institute” noting that perhaps only 1000 or the some 240k making more than 1million per month pay less than “their secretaries”. (hint: Brookings isn’t right wing).

    I don’t know if ‘languagehat’ gets his political philosophy from Solzhenitsyn … but the notion of local involvement in politics as essential to protect liberty is one I could see being held by left or right. I wonder what he thought of the sets of addresses (Lichtenstein and Harvard for example) that he gave in the West (“Warning to the West”). The left then was apoplectic hearing them at the time and if I recall you were fairly allergic to the notions presented as well.

  5. The “NewsBusters site” quoted that right wing think tank, the “Brookings Institute” noting that perhaps only 1000 or the some 240k making more than 1million per month pay less than “their secretaries”. (hint: Brookings isn’t right wing).

    It sure as hell ain’t liberal. It has people on the board and otherwise from both parties. The person in question at Brookings was William Gale, who worked for the Bush Administration. Wouldn’t you say it’s hugely dishonest of NewsBusters to pretend that the claim comes from “the liberal Brookings Institution?” And of course you just swallowed it as gospel.

    Not to mention the whole point is ridiculous. Even if it were true, so what? Why would you oppose a law that fixed the problem even if it only affects 1000 millionaires (who, if they’re anything like Buffett, would still represent a significant chunk of money?)