Saturday assorted links

by on January 7, 2017 at 1:16 pm in Uncategorized | Permalink

1 Some Guy January 7, 2017 at 1:21 pm

#1 They thought the daily horoscope was too empirical for their readers.

2 dearieme January 7, 2017 at 4:52 pm

“This writer will be a key member of The Post’s economics and policy team, which is driven by a high-energy digital metabolism, ….” and the need to concoct fake news.

3 So Much For Subtlety January 7, 2017 at 6:00 pm

which is driven by a high-energy digital metabolism

Sounds like they need an English-language correspondent. Is willful misuse of the language like this a guarantee of nonsensical thinking? Is any business writer who writes like this guaranteed to be selling snake oil?

4 4ChanMan January 7, 2017 at 6:33 pm

The Washington Post is full of Cucks dude.

5 Thiago Ribeiro January 7, 2017 at 7:59 pm

Does it Jeb! can’t apply?

6 Post-Truth Politics January 7, 2017 at 9:20 pm

So the WA Post is fake news to you, LOL. What seems like real news to you? Breitbart? Drudge? Alex Jones? Hannity?

7 Just Lookn January 7, 2017 at 10:33 pm

Unfortunately Brietbart, Drudge, Fox News etc provide more real news than Wa Wa Post

8 Rich Berger January 8, 2017 at 7:22 am

“Fake news” is not some new discovery in epistemology; it is one of a string of excuses for Hillary Clinton’s defeat. The latest excuse is that the Russians “hacked” the election.

There never has been such a thing as “real news” beyond the simple reporting of traffic accidents, murders, laws passed by the legislature, etc. The news organizations want to interpret these and other things for us, and in comes opinion and bias. The days when dear old Dad (or Grandpa, if you are older) could spend an hour or two with his New York Times, or some other prominent metropolitan newspaper, and feel “informed” are long gone. Same with the evening news with Walter Kronkite.

If you want to have some understanding of what is “true” and what is not, you need to read widely, compare and contrast, observe what is missing in each source. My local TV station gives me a good sense of the slant on national news, by what they leave out and the conclusions they reach (they use a lot of CNN clips for national and election coverage). An interesting study in how the media operates is the late story of the torture of a white man by four sadistic black “youths”. First, the story was ignored, then reported in vague terms. Now it is being depicted as a tool for the “far-right” to distort the reality of black oppression.

The jig may not be totally up, but it’s losing its grip. And that will be yuge.

9 dearieme January 8, 2017 at 10:38 am

‘There never has been such a thing as “real news”’: I disagree. At the back of many papers were sections devoted to sports results and stock market prices. They tended not to be fake news.

10 Thomas January 8, 2017 at 8:58 pm

The “BLMKidnapping” story is huge but you won’t read about it here. The real story is the violence against the right, and how openly the left supports it. Of course, history is awash in government and government cheerleaders commiting mass murder in the name of utopia and the Democrat party is different only in its lack of courage.

11 Justin January 7, 2017 at 1:37 pm

#2. “There is another benefit to using English in business: The language has few power markers. Its use can therefore help to break down the hierarchical, bureaucratic barriers that are entrenched in Japanese society and reflected in Japanese conversation, which could boost efficiency.”

Can someone who knows Japanese provide some context please? It seems very interesting.

12 Thiago Ribeiro January 7, 2017 at 2:36 pm

I guess they are talking about things like this:, diferent verbs forms depending on whom you are talking to. Feynmann hated those — he, however, adapted fast to Brazilian Portuguese a most elegant and beautiful language.

13 Thiago Ribeiro January 7, 2017 at 2:37 pm

Feynman, I mean.

14 Todd K January 7, 2017 at 2:53 pm

In Japanese, there are different levels of politeness that go beyond the two levels found in French with “tu” and “vous” for “you.” Younger Japanese are used to speaking with friends in the lowest level and to teachers in a higher level since they were tykes but often aren’t fluent themselves in the even higher level used in many business situations, so they sometimes buy books to bone up on that prior to their first job interview if in the business world.

Mikitani’s point is that when English is used, you aren’t constantly reminding each other who is higher or lower or who is in the group versus outside the group and therefore maybe more efficient.

15 dearieme January 7, 2017 at 4:54 pm

Isn’t there also a sex difference in usages?

16 Thiago Ribeiro January 7, 2017 at 5:04 pm

Yes. Japanese men are laconic and stupid and Japanese women are chatty and annoying – and I wouldn’t trust my wallet to neither.

17 Viking January 7, 2017 at 6:17 pm

Why is GDP per capita higher among Japanese and German Brazilians than the rest?

18 Thiago Ribeiro January 7, 2017 at 6:38 pm

So are Italian’s. They have benefited by government protection from the beginning as Brazilian Black writer Lima Barreto proved in the 1910s. It was a mistake trying to attract foreign immigrants and the Japanese Rebellion of the 1940s – foretold by many Brazilian patriots in the 1930s – is definitie proof. It is a shame the Constitutional Amendment banning Japanese immigrations was rejected and the laws banning Asians were overturned. Soon or later, we will take our country back, Jack. As an old Brazilian song says, “Brazil belong to Brazilians!”

19 Viking January 7, 2017 at 7:18 pm

You guys need a Fujimoro to set things straight! You have the solution to your problems in plain sight, and refuse to accept it!

20 Thiago Ribeiro January 7, 2017 at 8:05 pm

I would rather die than let them order me around! It was not for that that Brazilian men fought at the Paraguayan swamps. It is not for that that Brazilian men fought against the Axis. It is not for that that Brazilian men fought against the Japanese rebellion. We are the masters of an area bigger than the Roman Empire ever was and we intedto remain so. We won’t adapt to the world, we will adapt the world to us. As a Brazilian song says, the future belong to us, we are just beginning.

21 Todd K January 7, 2017 at 5:23 pm

Not that much at the business level – hard too explain… In informal talk, more of it, and men have two ways of saying “I” that women don’t normally use. One difference is that men may get more of a break in worrying less about the higher level of politeness than women in certain business situations. The more formal, the less anyone gets a break.

22 mike shupp January 7, 2017 at 7:54 pm

MISTER Mikitani to you, bub!

So we can play that game with English, if we wish.

23 Thiago Ribeiro January 7, 2017 at 8:08 pm

Not as much as the Japanese do. Feynman said that Japanese obsession with honorifics made communication clucky and cumbersome. He, however, liked Brazilian music and praised the Brazilian democratic spirit of open communication.

24 Todd K January 7, 2017 at 9:34 pm

Yeah, Feynman was getting fluent in Japanese but just hated the honorifics. I lot of that was poor interpretation by Americans. You don’t include the honorifics in English. It isn’t “the honorable Suzuki” but just Mr. Suzuki.

What about the Brazilian and Portuguese obsession of declaring every object on the planet feminine or masculine? That is some weird shit, Thiago. When I see a bookshelf, I don’t try to place a gender on it.

25 Thiago Ribeiro January 8, 2017 at 4:08 am

It and verbs forms makes easier to know whom we are talking about without saying “he” or “she” all the time. It helps to keep the language elegant and communication clear.

26 AJ January 7, 2017 at 7:39 pm

In companies, you always refer to people by their title and are required to speak to superiors with formal language. For an English parallel, it is probably closest to the military, where normal speech is also highly constrained and it can be hard to express a dissenting opinion to a superior officer.

Japanese also has some idiosyncrasies in ritual language. For instance, e-mails are always long because they require opening lines like “I’m obligated to you for always taking care of me” and are written as formal letters. People feel unsettled and disrespected if a reply is only a single line or just “ok”, like they are being dismissed or ignored. Business meetings also require some ritual greetings and exchanges of humility.

Calls to just change the culture clash with old habits and the fact that people sincerely feel it is a matter of respect to do these things. America generally substitutes money for respect. But to quote the Fast and the Furious, for some people the respect means more. Using English is one way to sidestep Japanese culture, especially since English is the global language of business and law anyways.

I will add that in Mikitani’s book, he notes that the vast majority of what he says in English is “That is too much, make it cheaper”.

27 Ray Lopez January 7, 2017 at 1:37 pm

#4 – “4. Profile of John Fernald.  He is highly rated, but remains underrated.” – I liked this article since it talked about the two schools of thought regarding productivity, and I think both schools are correct: the Fernald school (see the article), which adopts or proves the TC structural Great Stagnation thesis, then the school mentioned at the end, about how productivity is linked to the business cycle. Regarding the latter point, think of it this way: if you’re on a ‘winning team’ (economy is rising) you ‘play better’ than if you’re stuck in a losing team (economy in recession) where you’re just struggling to keep from being injured.

BTW, this book looks promising and not yet reviewed here (TC if you’re reading this, do a quick read of this book): “The Innovation Illusion: How So Little Is Created by So Many Working So Hard, by Fredrik Erixon (Author), Björn Weigel (Author) ” (published fall 2016; Martin Wolf has a blurb on the back cover, Erixon is a scholar, and I’ll be pissed if he doesn’t mention today’s flawed, weak IP patent system).

28 Hmmmmmmmm January 7, 2017 at 1:54 pm

#3. Good form–rider’s heels and hands. The cow looks focused and happy.

29 Heorogar January 7, 2017 at 2:03 pm

“How’s the cow? She walks. She talks. She’s full of chalk. The lacteal fluid extracted from the female of the bovine species is highly prolific to the nth degree, sir.”

Did anyone here hear that prior to this?

30 Ray Lopez January 7, 2017 at 2:14 pm

I have a distant relative–or so it’s said–that was once caught with a sheep in a compromising position in the Greek mountains. If it’s anybody I know, I think he’s the retarded one.

Bonus trivia: the coupling of a sheep and man will actually produce a zygote (sic, pronounced, zy-goat) but it aborts.

31 Ralph January 7, 2017 at 2:31 pm

“Bonus trivia: the coupling of a sheep and man will actually produce a zygote (sic, pronounced, zy-goat) but it aborts.”


32 Ray Lopez January 7, 2017 at 9:42 pm

As they say in sub-Saharan Africa, your arms are too short to box with god (me). -RL

Humans can impregnate sheep, but the offspring is stillborn.

33 Mark Thorson January 7, 2017 at 10:47 pm

Sheep have 54 chromosomes in their diploid form (half that in the gametes). Humans have 46. No sheep-human hybrid cell would be able to get past the first cell division because of the mismatch in chromosome number. (The mitotic spindle would be unable to form.) It is not correct to refer to “offspring” or “stillborn” in reference to a single cell.

34 carlospln January 8, 2017 at 1:07 am

Thanks, Mark


35 So Much For Subtlety January 8, 2017 at 3:50 am

Horses have 64 chromosomes. Donkeys only 62. Therefore they cannot produce viable offspring?

People have crossed pumas and jaguars, lamas and camels, even dolphins and killer whales. Sheep and humans is a bit extreme but not so much.

36 Mark Thorson January 8, 2017 at 11:34 am

Being off by one chromosome in closely related species is not such a big deal. Horses and donkeys are closely enough related that chromosome 1 on a horse will be pretty much the same as chromosome 1 on a donkey. A human chromosome 1 will be far different from a sheep chromosome 1. The sheep egg will find half of its chromosomes are missing and all these alien chromosomes present. It will be stuck at the stage of cell division when the spindle apparatus forms and it will never get past this stage.

But it was on Reddit. Are you telling me they don’t fact-check stuff on Reddit?

37 Thomas January 9, 2017 at 5:45 am

Ray, that is a very small thread. Lots of doxing danger. Be careful.

38 JC January 7, 2017 at 2:01 pm

“She didn’t have a horse so this New Zealand teen rides her cow instead ”

I’ve watched Blazing Saddles. I’m not impressed.

39 Mongo January 7, 2017 at 11:45 pm

I like candy.

40 Ralph January 7, 2017 at 2:30 pm

2. “Within Japan, Englishisation has enabled us to hire more non-Japanese employees, including 80 per cent of our new engineers since 2011.”

Japan is 98% Japanese. So, I think that paragraph would be more accurate if it said “using English helps us communicate better with our scabs.”

“Japan’s population is ageing. Our economy is slowing. We are not producing enough coders and digital gurus. The only way we can catch up and restore growth and dynamism is by looking outside our borders for talent.

For that, we have to be speaking English.”

Luckily for Japan, most Japanese people have not embraced this suicidal ideology. All over the world, the nationalists movements our rising. Suck it cucks!

41 Troll me January 7, 2017 at 3:41 pm

It is possible to retain identity and learn foreign languages.

It should be admitted, however, that it may expand your scope of thinking in the process of learning about cultural aspects of communication when using a language. I imagine the Japanese have sufficient confidence to not worry too much about that. It’s not like they are bringing up their children 24/7 in a foreign language (which is what is often demanded of immigrants to many countries, especially by the second generation).

42 Ralph January 7, 2017 at 4:35 pm

About national suicide, I was referring more to immigration than language. About the widespread adoption of English in business, my problem with it is that I fear it is creating a type of diglossia in certain parts of Europe. And, as English becomes a requirement, upon who does the cost of learning it fall? The employee of course, but who cares about him? Immigrants make a choice to leave their country of origin, it’s quite different when someone is told he must speak a different language in his country, and he is quite right to ask how it benefits him personally. The article states that:

“There is another benefit to using English in business: The language has few power markers. Its use can therefore help to break down the hierarchical, bureaucratic barriers that are entrenched in Japanese society and reflected in Japanese conversation, which could boost efficiency.”

It doesn’t occur to the author that, if English were widely adopted for use in business, it would create a huge class distinction. In Japan itself this isn’t going to happen. The Japanese are about as bad at learning the English language as Americans are at learning foreign languages, and for the same reason, both nations mainly consume domestic media. This company is shooting itself in the foot with this policy, scarring away potential talent.

43 Cyrus January 8, 2017 at 3:44 pm

Diglossia has been a stable norm in many times and places. Different languages are used inside and outside the village; and it isn’t self-apparent that this is a destructive thing.

44 So Much For Subtlety January 7, 2017 at 5:57 pm

It is possible to retain identity and learn foreign languages.

Says the Canadian. So how do you explain the last three generations of Canadian politics then? How’s that identity thing working out for the French-speakers of Manitoba?

45 Troll me January 7, 2017 at 6:26 pm

Having a few percent of the population being highly competent in a foreign language which is their second language is sooooo similar to having a few percent of the population being the only competent speakers of a language commonly used elsewhere due to its being their mother tongue.

I imagine they appreciate access to French language education, however. Among other things, this improves Canadian abilities to enjoy relations with the other 56 nations in La Francophine. So, maybe not completely retarded, even if completely ignoring the national unity aspects which drove requirements to make French language education available where there is demand for it. (They won’t open a French school for a single child, but if you can reliably fill a couple/few classes per grade within some distance that they can be reasonably transported there, this basically must be done.)

46 4ChanMan January 7, 2017 at 6:53 pm

No. It just makes Canadians a bunch of cucks. The US was also threatened with this fate, thankfully the voters made the right choice in November.

47 So Much For Subtlety January 7, 2017 at 7:00 pm

So it is possible to learn another language and retain your identity if only a small percentage of your population does so? What happened to the French-speaking population of Manitoba by the way? Where are they now?

It is nice for you to try to change the topic – and I am sure that many more Canadians benefit from learning French than just the sex tourists who go to Haiti. I mean think of the business opportunities in Mali! But that is beside the point. It is absurd for a Canadian to be insisting that language is not central to identity given the entire political life of your own country has revolved around little else for the past three generations. Canadians think language is central to their identity. Some of them think a misplaced apostrophe is a matter of national importance.

48 Troll me January 7, 2017 at 9:52 pm

The guy who changes the topic from an externally-focused business strategy of a Japanese firm to the use of French in Manitoba suggests that someone else is changing the topic …

49 Michael January 7, 2017 at 7:22 pm

Is it just me, or does anyone else see the word “cuck” as bordering on nonsensical in a lot of cases? I thought it was shorthand for “conservative who isn’t manly enough to oppose all immigration, and support other manly things that I find important”.

But given that your audience for this comment isn’t exclusively conservative, wouldn’t it be better to come up with a new, less partisan idiot marker for people who are less manly than you? Then we can all suck it!

50 4ChanMan January 7, 2017 at 7:29 pm

There are two things here. There are cuckservatives – and that’s like Cowen and Tabarrock and some of the commenters here but on the other handit’s pretty clear a lot of the other commenters here, even the Trump supporters who believe all the right things, are also Vicks in the sense that their wives are banging other dudes behind their backs while they nerd it up online all day

51 Post-Truth Politics January 7, 2017 at 9:22 pm

LOL, Trump supporters who believe all the right things. That’s a good one.

52 msgkings January 7, 2017 at 11:50 pm

Michael, cuck isn’t shorthand for anything. These alpha males who type it out all day on the internet are simply pointing out that everyone else has a wife literally being screwed by another guy, generally a black one. Even the single ones. Even the women. All cucks. This is so simple even a child can understand it.

53 Thanatos Savehn January 7, 2017 at 3:00 pm

#7 Children bring many blessings. Among them: being disabused of the silly notion that people and their personalities are, can be, or ought to be, interchangeable.

54 The Original Other Jim January 7, 2017 at 4:48 pm

1 – Why does WaPo need an economist? The NYT gets along fine without one.

55 Alistair January 8, 2017 at 5:49 am

I like that Krugman guy who does the horoscopes though. His predictions always make me smile.

56 Thiago Ribeiro January 7, 2017 at 5:01 pm

#2 “One of my fellow Japanese CEOs went so far as to call the plan ‘stupid’ – notable, in a country where executives do not generally criticise one another in the press.”
I guess he is hoping there is not a word for “stupid” in English.

57 Donald Pretari January 7, 2017 at 6:14 pm

#5…In order to read the real Rumi, you need to learn to read him in the original. There’s no way around that. Even then, you will less read him than study him. I’ve been working with this text, but I’m not there yet…

58 Post-Truth Religion January 7, 2017 at 9:23 pm

For me, leaving the religion out of poetry or other works of literature, as well as leaving it out of meditation classes and practices, is a vast improvement over the original.

59 derek January 7, 2017 at 6:21 pm

So the SOE’s are still moving money out of the China in large amounts, and profiting from the moves when large amounts get moved.

Somehow I think this will end badly.

60 anon January 7, 2017 at 6:24 pm

6b. The last couple days have been ridiculous. I have seen the Tweets as a real warning, but even for that, how much can one take? Arnold said it, a little more of the people’s work please.

61 4ChanMan January 7, 2017 at 7:01 pm

Hey get over it Trump WON. Don’t worry this country is going so far right you won’t even recognize it.

62 Alain January 7, 2017 at 7:38 pm

One can only hope. I’m crossing my fingers.

63 anon January 7, 2017 at 11:05 pm
64 TMC January 8, 2017 at 7:47 pm

As opposed to a novelist want-to-be.

65 Harun January 8, 2017 at 1:45 am

Show me the complaints from you when Obama was making Final Four brackets or when he barely interrupted a golf game to discuss ISIS beheading James Foley. Or when he ate noodles with Anothony Bourdain in Vietnam for a photo shoot, basically.

Just so were clear that this model wasn’t pioneered by Trump.

66 4ChanMan January 8, 2017 at 6:41 am

Final Four brackets ARE the People’s Work though.

67 anon January 8, 2017 at 9:44 am

I am very surprised by this answer. You follow the Twitter hot takes, and you think they are like planned press engagement?

68 Kevin January 7, 2017 at 6:39 pm

#3. There is a German teen girl who does the same thing. Now we can make it an Olympic event.

69 4ChanMan January 7, 2017 at 7:13 pm

I really feel it’s time for making an appointment to have my back waxed

70 January 7, 2017 at 7:43 pm

#2 “The language (English) has few power markers.”

Apparently the author has not conversed with any elite English, Inglish or SInglish speakers. The use of power markers is in the mind of the speakers and they will invent some to fill the gap. e.g.

“””Dialects and Power: It is impossible for an Englishman to open his mouth without making some other Englishman hate or despise him.”””

“”” ‘To-day la?’ ‘Tomorrow lah!’; the LA Particle in Singapore English “””

“”” (d) The functions of the two variants of (LA) as carriers of con-
trasting pragmatic value is also confirmed but, it is demonstrated,
the values are the reverse of those previously reported, i.e. la signals
solidarity, friendship, a reduction of social distance between par-
ticipants, in contrast with lah with its power-signalling, hostility and
social-distancing function. “””

71 Alex January 7, 2017 at 7:55 pm

I am glad something else was posted about Parfit because the last thing I could not read since there was the necessity of a registration.

72 So Much For Subtlety January 7, 2017 at 8:46 pm

I like the idea of the major translator of Rumi being someone unable to speak a word of Persian or Arabic.

However, apart from the obvious question of authenticity, it goes to the heart of a lot of problems dealing with the Middle East – and other topics. The “Well Educated” Left wants to believe a lot of things that ain’t so. They base their views on translations like those of Rumi. But those translations are dumbed down pap designed to be palatable to the debased and frankly ignorant tastes of the “Well Educated” Left. That is, the religion is left out.

So I think it is a vicious circle. The Left wants to believe something is true. The market provides them with what they want. They base their ideas on what is true on what the market has given them to read. And so on. Until Trump is elected.

73 Post-Truth Politics January 7, 2017 at 9:26 pm

And the connection between translations of Rumi which, wonderfully in my view, leave out the religion, is related to Trump’s election exactly how?

74 So Much For Subtlety January 8, 2017 at 3:56 am

The ruling elites of the West are caught in their own fantasy worlds. This has become self-fulfilling. Because they cannot see the Islam in Rumi’s work, they produce translations that have no Islam, which in turn causes them to believe that there is no Islam in Rumi’s work – and the rest of the Muslim world.

Essentially they are in a deluded bubble where they can only hear each others’ voices and are utterly cut off from reality. The voters do not like this. This intellectual bankruptcy annoys them. Hence Trump.

75 Post-Truth Politics January 7, 2017 at 9:27 pm

Without the help of Putin, Assange, and Comey, clearly Trump would not have been elected. Rumi had nothing to do with that.

76 chuck martel January 8, 2017 at 8:58 am

Putin mysteriously got his hands on the $1.6 billion that Mrs. Bill Clinton planned to spend on her campaign and bought time on national television productions of her fictional bathroom server, among other things.

77 li/arlington January 7, 2017 at 9:57 pm

# 3: Horses are not cows, but someone who loves animals can often have as much success with the less human animals – the cows, the sheep, the Norwegian rats, the young box turtles – as the less inspired of us can easily have with the relatively more human animals – the horses, the pike, the pigeons, and the old box turtles, just to name a few of each type. There is no sound quite so uncanny and at the same time so close to our heart as the sound of a young monkey, for the first time in its life, laughing at something funny with an almost human sense of laughter.

78 li/arlington January 7, 2017 at 10:22 pm

Slight plagiarism there of Khodasevich and his out-of-copyright poem about the Serb and the sad barrel-organ grinder’s monkey? You decide….

79 li/arlington January 7, 2017 at 10:31 pm

just the monkey part the rest was original

80 li/arlington January 7, 2017 at 11:25 pm

not a khodasevich fan? please don’t reply!

81 li/arlington January 8, 2017 at 1:19 am

there is no sound so uncanny and at the same time so close to our heart as the sound of a young monkey, for the first time in its life, laughing with an almost human sense of laughter.

82 Cuck_Lee_The Elder January 7, 2017 at 11:30 pm

The difference between grammatical power (or rank and distance) markers in Japanese (and some other languages, such as Korean) and English is how avoidable they are. Even in English, Japanese people can, if they wish, express deference etc., it’s just a little harder, or rather, less formulaic. Talking about a general business matter is quite different from directly addressing people who are likely to vary in the distance-rank dimension, no matter what language is being used.

Forcing employees to learn English might have other purposes, maybe like the “spiritual training” that some companies impose on staff (forcing them to meditate and go around knocking on doors begging for alms). Or it might serve as a way to select for certain types of personality, such as willingness to do as instructed. Of course, the international communication aspect is not an illusion.

83 Todd K January 8, 2017 at 12:37 am

By the way, this only English rule at this company started 3 or 4 years ago.

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