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Meesa gonna kill you!

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Sunday, November 20, 2011

Links - 20th November 2011

"Consistency is the last refuge of the unimaginative." - Oscar Wilde


Greg Mankiw's Blog: Educating Oligarchs - "Paul is making an implicit assumption--that the return to education is deterministic. If indeed a year of schooling guaranteed you precisely a 10 percent increase in earnings, then there is no way increasing education by a few years could move you from the middle class to the top 1 percent. But it may be better to think of the return to education as stochastic. Education not only increases the average income a person will earn, but it also changes the entire distribution of possible life outcomes"

I Was Wrong, and So Are You - "Under the right circumstances, conservatives and libertarians were as likely as anyone on the left to give wrong answers to economic questions. The proper inference from our work is not that one group is more enlightened, or less. It’s that “myside bias”—the tendency to judge a statement according to how conveniently it fits with one’s settled position—is pervasive among all of America’s political groups... More than 30 percent of my libertarian compatriots (and more than 40 percent of conservatives), for instance, disagreed with the statement “A dollar means more to a poor person than it does to a rich person”—c’mon, people!—versus just 4 percent among progressives... Consistently, the more a statement challenged a group’s position, the worse the group did... the fact that a college education showed almost no effect—at least for those inclined to take such a survey—strongly suggests that the classroom is no great corrective for myside bias. At least when it comes to public-policy issues, the corrective value of professional academic experience might be doubted as well"

Housing chief admits demoting Christian to protect award from gay charity - "A housing association that demoted a manager for speaking out on gay marriage has admitted that it feared losing a coveted award from a gay charity. Father-of-two Adrian Smith, 54, was found guilty of misconduct and had his salary slashed by £14,000 after saying on his private Facebook page that same-sex weddings in churches would be ‘an equality too far’... Gay activist Mr Tatchell said: ‘Mr Smith was not threatening or intimidating. In a democratic society, he has a right to express his point of view, even if it is misguided and wrong"

The Other Myth Busters
Men think about sex only twice as often as women (i.e. once per hour)

Bulk Homeopathy - "Learn the secret that Big Alt Med doesn't want you to know! You can acquire high volumes of homeopathic remedies at a tiny fraction of the cost by bypassing an expensive and unnecessary process. Traditionally, the tedious process involves taking a substance, diluting it with distilled water, pouring most of it out, and diluting it again many times until the substance has been completely washed away. Why bother with such an expensive and unnecessary process when the end product is the same. And to any naysayers, I challenge you to tell the difference in a double-blind test"

Men Victimized By Facebook Data Theft More Than Women - "Women tend to be more cautious on Facebook than men... Men are more likely than women to:
- Accept friendship requests from strangers;
- Announce their location;
- Ignore privacy settings;
- Leave their account searchable to all, and
- Avoid reading privacy policies on social networks...
When a photo of a hot-looking woman accompanies a friend request, men are likely to click the “confirm” button, whereas the opposite rarely happens"

PETA targets Mario over raccoon suit - "According to a PETA website titled "Mario Kills Tanooki," the character's outfit "is sending the message that it's OK to wear fur""

The Fixed Price Paradox: Conflicting Effects of “All-You-Can-Eat” Pricing - "Does the fixed price a person pays for an unlimited service, such as an all-you-can-eat buffet, influence how much is consumed and the perceived quality of the experience? We show that when a person’s choice is conditioned on them selecting a fixed price plan, their desire to get a “good deal,” can lead them to eat more and possibly enjoy it less. A study is reported in which decreasing the fixed price of a zero marginal cost good also decreased its consumption. Specifically, when the price of an all-you-can-eat pizza restaurant was discounted by 50%, customers who were randomly given the discount ate fewer pieces of pizza (2.95 vs. 4.09) than those who had not been given the discount. Price level should have no impact on how much of an unlimited resource is consumed or on one’s perceived quality of the pizza. Thus we provide evidence of the sunk cost fallacy in a food consumption context."

Students plan ambush for pervert-stalker - "A group of students ambushed a stalker who has been harassing a fellow undergrad for a year... The man arrived at about 4.30pm and texted the girl, "I'm here. I'm wearing a polo t-shirt and blue uncle shorts." (He was actually wearing a blue polo tee and shorts)... The students swiftly alerted the school's security officers and the police to nab the man. However, when the police arrived, an officer only asked the man some questions before letting him go. The students were left puzzled as they were hoping the police will arrest the man for his acts of harassment. It is understood that the police will not be pursuing this case"
I am very surprised by the outcome of this case. It seems some police officers have some sense, after all (IIRC harassment is a civil case, not criminal, and besides a warning could suffice)

Why Millennial Women Are Burning Out At Work By 30 - "Men are twice as likely as women to advance at each career transition stage. One rationale is that men are more likely than women to do things that help their personal wellbeing at work, thus negating burnout, according to the Captivate Network. Men are 25% more likely to take breaks throughout the day for personal activities, 7% more likely to take a walk, 5% more likely to go out to lunch, and 35% more likely to take breaks “just to relax.” It seems relaxation is something Millennial women have never experienced. One reason that women are burning out early in their careers is that they have simply reached their breaking point after spending their childhoods developing well-rounded resumes. “These women worked like crazy in school, and in college, and then they get into the workforce and they are exhausted”... "These students are totally unprepared for the real world. The reality for women who want to work in PR is that they are going to be working with 24 catty [women] who will backstab and compete with them. No one will say thank you. You will eat lunch at 5 p.m. It sucks and it’s hard work""
More non-discrimination-related reasons why women are lagging behind in the workplace

Long history- Bangkok, hub of sex tourism - Sex tourism is vital for Thailand... Sex is the lifeline of Bangkok's economy... "the global economic downturn has taken a toll on the thriving sex industry in Bangkok. The impact is so huge that bars have been forced to launch promotional schemes to woo customers, and sex workers are offering service at a much subsidised rates"

Parasites drove human genetic variation

Congress Reaps Pizza Harvest - "Tuesday, by act of Congress, pizza was declared a vegetable. The Spending Bill before our elected officials contained an Agriculture Department provision recognizing that school kids are dangerously obese, and that subsidizing school lunches of frozen pizza and french fries is unwise and unhealthy. The Congressional response: a slice of pizza = a serving of vegetables."

Bald eagles by Charles Glatzer - Amazing Pics

Dh300 fine for falling asleep on Dubai Metro - "Penalty for dozing off on Dubai Metro more severe than carrying weapons"

mrbrown: L'infantile terrible of Singapore: Bye bye Rochor Centre - "First it was Bukit Brown, now it's Rochor Centre. Singapore: No space for the old and living, no space for the dead and buried. But always time for more highways. For cars that have become increasingly out of reach for most of us."

The Psychology of Sunk Cost - "In a field study, customers who had initially paid more for a season subscription to a theater series attended more plays during the next 6 months, presumably because of their higher sunk cost in the season tickets. Several questionnaire studies corroborated and extended this finding. It is found that those who had incurred a sunk cost inflated their estimate of how likely a project was to succeed compared to the estimates of the same project by those who had not incurred a sunk cost... The sunk cost effect was not lessened by having taken prior courses in economics."

Sex zone plan leaves Taiwanese cold - ""Punishing the clients is worse than punishing us because the clients will not come for fear of being caught and fined and we won't be able to make a living"... Some women's rights groups oppose the government plan for fear that red-light districts would breed more crime and human smuggling. "We cannot eliminate the sex trade but we can reduce its scale. It is wrong to legalise prostitution which exploits and discriminates against women," said Chi Hui-jung, head of The Garden of Hope Foundation. Chi said the central government should have passed a law punishing only those who buy sex services"

Am I Wearing Pants? - "Every day girls around the world unwittingly leave the house without pants on. Confused at the difference between jeggings and jeans, seduced by the comfort of stretchy leggings—we've all seen victims of GLHP (Girls Leaving the House Pantsless) Syndrome. Am I Wearing Pants? is a self-check guide for girls to help end the see through clothing, visible panty line, camel toe nightmare."

St Paul's staff having to clean up human waste INSIDE the cathedral as protestors 'use it as a latrine' - "Meanwhile, vandals have spray painted '666' next to the main entrance.The provocative 'number of the beast' was daubed in silver paint on a wall to the left-hand side of the Christopher Wren masterpiece"
"Poppy sellers were branded 'baby killers' by anti-capitalist protestors outside St Paul's."
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