Audio Clips

28 May 2011

Sleep: It Feels Like a Waste, But I Guess We Need It

There are some studies that show that 8 hours is the right amount.  And you can't make it up on the weekend either.  Doesn't it just seem like your wasting a third of your life though?

How Many Hours of Sleep Do You Really Need? - Lifehacker

25 May 2011

Senator Rand Paul on the Debt Ceiling

Entrepreneur Magazine Seeks to Crush Entrepreneurs

I was reading an article in this week's Business Week and it revealed how Entrepreneur Magazine has claimed a trademark for the word "entrepreneur". Apparently they have sued quite a few people who have used the word in their business name. One of the entrepreneurs they sued, Daniel Castro, has a business called He's fighting it and I wish him well. This kind of trademark abuse really irritates me. I'm thinking of starting several businesses: Entrepreneurisms, Inc; Entrepreneur Productions; Entrepreneur's Traveling Circus; Entrepreneur & Son, LLC; Mr. Entrepreneur. Maybe I'll get my own cease-and-desist order from them.

23 May 2011

Why We Study History

I found this quote by C.S. Lewis today.

Most of all we need intimate knowledge of the past. Not that the past has any magic about it, but because we cannot study the future, and yet need something to set against the present, to remind us that the basic assumptions have been quite different in different periods and that much which seems certain to the uneducated is merely temporary fashion. A man who has lived in many places is not likely to be deceived by the local errors of his native village. The scholar has lived in many times and is therefore in some degree immune from the cataract of nonsense that pours from the press and the microphone of his own age.

—C.S. Lewis, Learning in Wartime, Oxford University, 1939

Asset Forfeiture Abuse: Good For Police, Not So Much For Citizens

One of the perverse incentives that has come out of the Drug War comes from the asset forfeiture laws. These laws allow for police to seize any assets that they suspect may be involved in the drug trade. The perverse incentive comes from the fact that the police department gets to keep those assets. So let me ask this: If the government were to let you personally keep any assets you discovered that might be involved with the drug trade, would you suddenly take a harder look at people who look like they might be involved in drugs? And how many times would you go ahead and make an arrest simply because you would be able to keep the asset? Obviously, there are a significant number of cops out there who would never entertain that notion. But, there are a significant number who would. And do.

21 May 2011

The Military-Industrial Complex in Five Minutes

One area of the federal budget that conservatives seem to have a blind-spot for is military spending. I don't really understand this. If you're actually serious about getting the budget under control, there's no excuse for ignoring the Department of Defense. The DOD is a source of some of the most outrageous examples of wasted money. Tom Woods, one of my favorites, gives a 5 minute rundown on the military-industrial complex that military hero President Eisenhower warned us about.

Virtual Choir

Eric Whitacre gave a TED talk on how he has put together a couple of virtual choirs by taking submissions for all the parts from people all over the world. What a fascinating idea!

Why Does Congress Investigate the Oil Companies and Not Apple?

But the better question is: Why does congress interrogate any company about their profits?

From Mark Perry's blog: Carpe Diem

Q1 2011 ExxonMobil Apple
Earnings Before Tax$18.94B$7.96B
Income Taxes$8.0B$1.9B
Net Profit$10.65B$5.98B
Effective Tax Rate42.20%24.22%
Profit Margin9.30%24.27%
Profit/Employee$127,392 $128,470

Are Profits Really Immoral?

Hat Tip: Why Homeschool

The Libertarian Conception of Freedom

Jacob Hornberger, president of the Future of Freedom Foundation, wrote an article at Lew Rockwell's site recently about libertarianism and freedom. It's worth a read. Here is an excerpt.

Libertarians view freedom differently from statists. Our concept of freedom, in an economic sense, is as follows:
We believe that people should be free to engage in any occupation or profession without any government-issued license, permit, or other form of official permission. Let consumers, not the government, decide who engages in different lines of work.
We believe that people should be free to enter into mutually beneficial transactions with anyone else in the world, without interference by the government. That includes such things as hiring a housekeeper from Mexico and selling food to a Cuban.
We believe that people should be free to accumulate unlimited amounts of wealth and, equally important, to decide for themselves what to do with it – spend, save, invest, or donate it. Thus, we hold that people should be free to plan for their own retirement (or not), to donate to their church or other causes (or not), and to help out their elderly or ailing parents (or not).
For us libertarians, that is what genuine freedom is all about, in terms of economic activity.

Compare the statist interpretation of freedom, an interpretation that libertarians consider to be false, fraudulent, and counterfeit. The statist version of freedom holds that government, not the individual, is sovereign and supreme. If people want to engage in a line of work, they’ve got to ask the government for permission. The government restricts them from engaging in mutually beneficial transactions with others, through such devices as minimum-wage laws, trade restrictions, and immigration controls. Everybody’s income is subject to being taxed in any amount deemed proper by government officials and redistributed to others. People are forced to share their money with others, be it the elderly, the sick, or simply the politically privileged.
Thus, when libertarians are asked whether they live in a free country, our answer is opposite to that of liberals and conservatives. Our answer is “no,” because an essential aspect of freedom is economic liberty. If people in a society don’t have economic liberty, then they cannot truly be considered free. And statists are not free merely because they think they are. A denial of reality, no matter how severe, doesn’t affect reality itself.

Would There Be Benefits From Ending the Drug War?

Judge Gray seems to think so and he makes a compelling case.

16 May 2011

Unfortunately, He Still Got Caught

But, it was fun while it lasted.

Humans Are Weird: The McGurk Effect

I saw this on another blog and my daughter and I were just fascinated. I'm so glad that the guy who says he has studied this effect for 25 years is still affected by it. At least I know I'm not some subnormal human being. Well, not because of this anyway.

Hat tip: Why Homeschool

10 May 2011

More A&G

I've added a few new Armstrong and Getty clips in the app at the top of the blog so enjoy.

02 May 2011

ReasonTV's Nanny of the Month: Elsa Carmona. Who?

If you haven't heard of Elsa Carmona, just remember the name and make sure she is never the principle of your kid's school.