Monday Highlights

Good morning.

  1. Progressive anthropology/reporter investigates conservative evangelicals.
  2. Of risk and market distortions.
  3. Speaking of risk.
  4. On beauty.
  5. And Syria.
  6. It’s not about infrastructure silly, it’s about kickbacks for donations. Remember, the “Chicago way” … it’s all about corruption.
  7. Our governmental system, defined.
  8. And battleships doing their thing with the help of CGI. If you think that interesting, I’d recommend this book too.
  9. Have you ever heard of “red sprites” … I hadn’t. Interesting.
  10. Upcoming must-watch TV.
  11. More feminism/guns overlap.

10 responses to “Monday Highlights

  1. 3.Speaking of risk.

    Interesting but it doesn’t really try to evaluate the effectiveness if partial screening. 1% of 30-40 million cargo containers a year are scanned for radioactive material using a calculation to determine how ‘risky’ any particular container is.

    What’s missing from this, though, is a critical question. Has any terrorist tried to smuggle in radioactive material in a cargo container? Assuming the answer is no then you can’t really say much of anything about how good this system is. Given a major radioactive based attack could quite easilly end up costing hundreds of billions of dollars to even trillions if you consider the implication of an atomic bomb going off in a major city, $16B a year for 100% scanning doesn’t seem that high a price.

  2. 2.Of risk and market distortions.

    Interestingly there’s no actual market distortions cited here. Pundit commentator has little or no money to put anywhere, he looks at how people who do have money price various assets in the free market and decides he doesn’t think those are the prices he would set. Hence a ‘market distortion’ LOL.

  3. Boonton,
    I see. Fixing interest by law does not distort markets.

  4. Boonton,
    Guess you’d have to take that up with our President. He’s in charge. Oh, wait, you’re his defender, right? Never mind.

  5. I see. Fixing interest by law does not distort markets.

    Interest rates aren’t set by law. Even if they were the market would respond with either shortages or surpluses.

    Guess you’d have to take that up with our President. He’s in charge.

    Well you are an advocate of selective screening, so you should be happy that it’s being done with cargo containers and be able to defend it as working there and be expanded to people in airports. As for the President, he cannot spend $16B to enforce a law fully if Congress will only allocate 1/100th of that.

  6. Boonton,

    Interest rates aren’t set by law. Even if they were the market would respond with either shortages or surpluses.

    Exactly, witness 2007 and Fannie/Freddie apparently were not set up using any laws. Odd that.

    Well you are an advocate of selective screening.

    Intelligence coupled with selective screening. I have no evidence either way that intelligence is being used at our ports … and we know for a fact it isn’t at the airports.

  7. Intelligence coupled with selective screening. I have no evidence either way that intelligence is being used at our ports

    Errr you yourself linked to an article talking about how customs has all types of intelligence and profiling gathering so it that the 1% of containers scanned are selected to be among the worthy of scanning.

    and we know for a fact it isn’t at the airports.

    Actually we know for a fact it is. There are no fly lists and fly with scrutiny lists as well as enhanced screening that is done both randomly and ‘with intelligence’.

    Exactly, witness 2007 and Fannie/Freddie apparently were not set up using any laws.

    Fannie/Freddie sets the interest rates of Mexican gov’t bonds by force of a law passed in 2007?

  8. So it seems as if we have suffered an incident of domestic terrorism in the Co movie shootings which sadly illustrates my point about the weakness of profiling.

    Consider the attempt by the media to find any online presence of the shooter. To date it seems the man has never done Facebook or Myspace, has no online digital trail of any type that a day plus of intensive googling has been able to uncover. To date no one has stepped forward to say anything unusual about this guy from the offline world.

    If he had choosen to attack a plane instead of a movie, what databases and programs do we really have available in order to ‘flag’ him as someone suspect?

  9. Boonton,

    If he had choosen to attack a plane instead of a movie, what databases and programs do we really have available in order to ‘flag’ him as someone suspect?

    Odd you’d ask that. Just in the last weeks he suddenly purchased a number of guns and over 3k rounds of ammunition. Might that be a flag? I’d venture yes, and oddly enough that information would be easily found. You asked and voila, but you didn’t look.

  10. I suggest you examine exactly how that information was discovered. There’s no database of all ammo purchases. I suspect it was discovered *after* the fact. I suspect one of two ways it was noted. Perhaps someone at the company that took his order heard about his rampage and said something like “ohh my God, this guy brought from us a few months ago” and then alerted media or police. Or perhaps the police have gotten his bank account records already and noticed a large charge from ‘Ammo4You.com’ and learned about it that way. Either way, though, doesn’t work for ‘profiling’ as they rely upon knowing the person was a terrorist after they did the deed.

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