Observations

Anatman

The New York Times has a remarkable story up about a New York school teacher who went missing for almost a month after suffering from a case of dissociative fugue. I particularly enjoy how the article portrays the fragility of a self and the potential for massive disconnection from our memories. Also fascinating is the […]

Late Night Flippancy

If history is so corrupted by patriarchical mores that it should be called herstory, should histograms be called herstograms?

United States Botantical Gardens

United States Botantical Gardens

If only everything in the world looked as good in photographs as the flowers in the United States Botantical Gardens:

Linear Regression and Decisions about Sampling

Lately I’ve been thinking about the optimal strategy for data collection when you plan to run a linear regression. Clearly, you want a sample of widely distributed points if you’re unsure that a strict linearity assumption is appropriate. If you already know from theoretical reasons that linearity is appropriate, then you know that you only […]

Moral Responsibility

Responsibility, in the moral sense, is not a property of actors, but merely a confabulation on our part designed for one and only one purpose: to justify the suffering we inflict upon others. This holds equally well in regard to matters of retributive and distributive justice: responsibility is a mere holdover from an antiquated conception […]

Social Scientism

I find extraordinary the readiness with which members of certain branches of the social sciences latch onto obscure and irrelevant findings in the natural sciences as means of buttressing their views. This habit convinces me that their work is, as Hayek would say, merely scientistic — that their life’s work is the application of a […]

No One Ever Beats Vegas

It occurred to me today that the reason I find attempts to “beat Vegas” so odd is that I am nearly certain that, if you are smart enough to actually beat Vegas and yet you are not spending your time trying to beat Wall Street instead, you must be stupid. Consider this my proof by […]

The Origins of Poverty

Among those with any compassion for the poor, there seem to be two schools: those who believe that the poor face difficult lives that make it impossible for them to function and those who believe that the poor face easy lives, but are constitutionally incapable of meeting even those limited challenges for some reason.

Status R-Quo

It occurred to me today that there should be a website devoted to web design called “Status R-Quo”.