September 23rd, 2008

hermione by oatmilk

[catching up] economics & etc.

I can b-school osmosis the psychology stuff, but I think I'm just not wired for economics.  Have I retained any of what I've read on this?  Not much.

I've retained that most people think the 700-plus-billion-dollar bailout is a bad idea.  And that banning short-selling isn't a useful idea.  And that lot of folks don't buy the blaming of the "repeal" of Glass-Steagall.  Oh, and Megan McArdle is skeptical of hindsight regulation.

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One thing that's been throwing me in chatting with lefties has been the idea that we should let Wall Street fail (they deserve it after all, and hey, if these companies are too big to fail, isn't the middle class too big to fail as well? shouldn't we get some sort of bailout -- I bite my tongue on the fact that "saving the middle class" isn't that simple, nevermind the fact that much/most of the middle class is not exactly teetering on failure, because I know the statement is intended partially tongue-in-cheek) as if this wouldn't have any sort of ripple effect.  I mean, I'm usually the one advocating heartless pragmatism (just war, ends justify means, etc.) and not being beloved by the Left for it.
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Things I might be able to retain include Tim Carney on what the heck AIG is (via Megan McArdle).


Ten National Security Myths (The Nation - September 17, 2008)


I finally read Maureen Dowd's "Aaron Sorkin Conjures a Meeting of Obama and Bartlet."  I'd been resisting, 'cause I don't like Maureen Dowd.  Not gonna lie; I wasn't impressed. 

There's a lot of filler, and while there are a few good lines it's mostly not that compelling.

And Bartlet's attack on Palin . . . where to even begin?  Oh, I know, with "It's not bad enough she's forcing her own daughter into a loveless marriage to a teenage hood, she wants the rest of us to guide our daughters in that direction too?" because where the fuck did THAT come from?  Point out a double standard?  [Which Bartlet does, in his "black daughter" bit.]  Yes, go for it.  But we know nothing about Bristol and [Googles] Levi or their relationship.

jennyo takes the opportunity to comment: "I also note that 30 Rock has a lot of shippy RPF [...]  This once again suggests that of all fandom fights, the "ZOMG RPF IS WRONG!" is still a rather dumb fandom fight."  I would argue that pr0ning up celebs is a bit different from the gen/shippy RPF that mainstream media is able to get away with.

If we're gonna talk West Wing professional RPF, I prefer The Onion's "Aaron Sorkin Announces New 'West Wing' Animated Series At SorCon" (hat tip: wisdomeagle).


This from the Tues. Sept. 23 metro made me giggle:
The owner of a San Francisco wine bar was doing a brisk business with an organic wine imported from Chile: Palin Syrah. But after a certain nomination last month, sales have dried up.

"It was our best-selling wine before [the V.P. announcement]," Chris Tavelli, owner of Yield Wine Bar, told the Serious Eats blog. But since then sales have plummeted. Because wine drinkers in San Francisco really are that petty.

OBAMA SUPPORTER John Althouse Cohen on "How Obama Lost Me."

Plus, Mike Rappaport on why he's not supporting McCain.

Don't people wind up feeling this way every four years? Which isn't to say they're wrong. As for me, I haven't liked a candidate enough to be actually disillusioned by one in . . . well, ever, really. The good news is that the guy you don't like usually fails to live up to your fears almost as much as the guy you like fails to live up to your hopes. . . .
The Mike Rappaport piece ends: "Update: Since Glenn has linked to this post with the statement "why [Mike Rappaport] is not supporting McCain," I thought I should give readers a couple of other blog posts on the subject with additional reasons.  Here are three of many, and there are others on this page."  Reading them is something of a surreal experience.


Starbucks Does Not Equal Savvy
What we talk about when we talk about experience
By Michael Gerson | NEWSWEEK
Published Sep 20, 2008

Here They Go Again
Rovean tactics alone do not win the Republican Party elections. This is a center-right country, and Democrats ignore this at their own peril.
By Jonathan Darman | NEWSWEEK
Published Sep 20, 2008

Who Cares Where Spain Is?
The debate shouldn't be a chance to play gotcha. What the candidates know about the world is less important than how they think about it.
By Richard N. Haass | NEWSWEEK
Published Sep 20, 2008

"there's an art to the laughter there's a science and there's a lot of love and compliance"

I woke up at 7:06 this morning.  Ideally I'm out of the house about ten minutes prior to that.  So in the interest of getting a shower and stuff, no gym for me today.  (Jonah and I were doing dinner at Veggie Planet between work and class, so after work wasn't a gym option.)

Veggie Planet = still tasty.  I got a tofu peanut curry rice dish.  And cinnamon apple tea.

And then we went to TeaLuxe and got their seasonal hot chocolate + chai.  (On the counter woman's recommendation, I got Tra Que Chai -- cloves, nutmeg, cinnamon.  He got Kashmiri Chai, which smelled very minty.)

While waiting to cross JFK St. back to the T, a woman informed us about a demonstration or something.  I didn't take a flyer, but as we began to cross the street she told us about how millions of children are being drugged and it's a hoax.  I said, "I would argue, but I have to go to class."  She said that she knew this was true because she took care of her five-and-a-half-year-old grandson and they wanted to medicate him and she proved that he didn't need it.  I said that while some children are medicated when they don't need it, that medication is arguably overprescribed, I don't think all children are overmedicated.  She said most are, millions of children -- and poor children, not children of the upper-middle-class.  (I appreciated that at least she had an eye toward the systemically disadvantaged and wasn't just complaining about yuppies who really wanted toys more than children and should never have been allowed to breed in the first place.)  So I fulfilled my day's quota of engaging strangers in discussion.  (Possibly I need a new tag for this?)


Class was wicked dull.  I literally pulled out my copy of James Fraser's Between Church and State to read partway through.

The prof talked about trade and stuff and how one factor is negotiating and how when you intensely demand something, the supplier can demand a very high price (hence why it's a bad idea to fall in love).  I wanted to say, "But as long as the buyer thinks the good is worth the price paid, then both sides are still gaining.  Yes you want to claim as much of the pie as possible, but as long as you're still within the ZOPA you're coming out ahead."  But I mean, he knew that -- we were talking about comparative advantage and stuff, and how specialization and trade make both parties better off even if one party gains more than the other party does.

He talked about free trade and Cuba and suggested that no one's really gaining from the trade sanctions and SmartStudent said, "You underestimate the importance of Florida in every election [...] Cuban expats."

Someone asked if the supply and demand curves ever actually look like curves rather than just straight lines.  The prof said yes, that this model is an oversimplification, said, "People are not straight."  And we all laughed, him included.  He rephrased it as, "People do not behave linearly all the time."


Jessie wrote:
I have these moments with pretty much anyone I know even reasonably well, but the more I know someone, the more I find myself picking out those things. Moments where I think "would X still be X if she didn't do this thing that I can't even quite describe?" (Would Elizabeth be Elizabeth without talking to strangers about Marx and religion on the T? Would Emi be Emi without the way she blows her nose in the morning?)
I thought of this when I got cc-ed on an email from Nicole to B:
I had forgotten the true extent of my dorkiness and find myself leaping out of bed every morning, though still overwhelmed (in a good way) with all the things I can learn in just one day... On that note, I also have some readings to send you/Sara that reminded me of MONV, and which might help frame the discussion next semester.
Yes, she is no longer working here and is still talking about helping improve B's course.  (I think one reason the both of us worked well together is that we're both crazy like that.)


soundingsea is talking about writercon 2009 again, and now that my summer is over I'm actually in the mindset to be excited about that.

Next year is totally going to be the year of long weekend trips.

Reconciling Ministries Network's 10th Convocation is scheduled for Labor Day Weekend (September 4-7, 2009) at the YMCA of the Rockies at Estes Park, Colorado.

I feel confident that WriterCon will not be scheduled for Labor Day weekend, so yay for not having to choose between the queer Methodists and fandom.

I remain undecided as to muskratjamboree.  Last year I felt like I should go because it's local, but from who signed up it felt like it was gonna be DueSouthCon or something -- which is fine, but which has no appeal for me.  Hanging out with local fen would of course be cool, but I feel like I would be better served hanging out with them in other contexts.  And "a slash-oriented comm con" doesn't especially help sell me either.
    Muskrat Jamboree 2009! A multi-fandom, slash-oriented con! April 3rd and 4th, 2009!
    Registration will go live on October 25th, 2008 and will be limited to 140 people. The registration fee will be $80.00 US.


email forward from my mom:

Last night, my friend and I were sitting in the living room and I said to her, 'I never want to live in a vegetative state, dependent on some machine and fluids from a bottle. If that ever happens, just pull the plug.'

She got up, unplugged the Computer, and threw out my wine.

She's such a bitch

I thought JennyO was kidding when she referred to Lindsay Lohan as a a baby queer, but apparently not.  (And from the same Jenpost, Ckat Aiken is probably officially gay.)
Ravenpuff, Kitty Pryde


I swear these posts don't seem nearly so long when I'm drafting them than they do when I actually post them.  Sigh.  Though really, anyone who's been reading me for any length of time is likely not surprised.  And that's what the scroll wheel is for, after all.