Assorted Thursday links

Comments

#6: a reminder that a liberal is someone who applies libertarian arguments to sex and nothing else.

Add LU to the end of your name to discover an "and also."

The modern left is the most vociferous opponent of free speech in mainstream US politics.

Oh please. Raising a fuss, whether calling for boycotts or demanding people be fired or whatever, when someone says something you don't like isn't opposition to free speech. It's an attempt to change behavior, minds, and the culture at large. No one on the left is arguing for the detention of those who say things they don't like.

Anyway, if by "opponent of free speech" you mean "gets mad when people say certain things," then everyone's an opponent of free speech. It just depends on the speech in question.

Harvard Crimson editorial: academic freedom is racist.

http://www.thecrimson.com/column/the-red-line/article/2014/2/18/academic-freedom-justice/?page=1

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I refer to hate crime laws and proposals to regulate hate speech etc.

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Wasn't the left fond of the saying "I hate what you say, but I'll fight to the death for your right to say it"?

Following the recent blizzard of hate speech laws and abandoned books, plays and meetings, one would expect the place to be littered with dead left-wingers by now.

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I find it all rather amusing: Modern leftism is becoming so extreme one wonders when Stalinism will make a comeback.

Probably soon.

Yeah, I don't (married 35+ years) know what is love.

However, I know hate when I read it.

The intensity of some comments, specifically the-sky-is-falling-cuz-of-Obama-commie-care type predictions, that you often see on this blog, really astounds me. I just looked out the window and, at least as of 1:07 PM EST, the streets of New York have not broken out into a giant ethnic socialist civil war. Check back with me tomorrow though. I'm sure it's coming any day now...

The first one to mention Obama would be you.

I, the person who mentioned Stalinism, consider Obama a centrist.

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He may be a centrist in somethings but his failure to move forward on a large expansion of H1B Visas is harming the future of this nation almost as much as if he were an actual Stalinist.

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+1

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Funny how the modern right defends certain private interests that actually prevent someone from expressing an opinion on the grounds that only the government can use force to suppress free speech and that the 1st Amendment only applies to curbing government infringement until a private person expresses an opinion contrary to what they think. Then THAT is an attack on free speech. Please at least try to be consistent.

Also, the Stalinism comment reminds me that people are still buying into the fallacious slippery-slope Road to Serfdom argument. Yes, you are correct - anything other than anarcho-capitalism will inevitably lead to killing fields. I mean, there are concentration camps in Sweden, right?

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Leftism is the result of applying the fortune-cookie game to libertarianism: "Consenting adults should be free to do as they please...in bed."

+1

Stealing

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fantastic

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Yup, that one is being quoted on Facebook

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"When is science going to find a cure for a woman's mouth?"

--Leo Spaceman

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Best analogy: leasing vs. buying a car.

If you buy, you end up with rusty pile of junk that doesn't run anymore. If you lease, you may pay a little more, but you always have a car that drives.

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@6

STAHHHHHP! Sex and relationships can't possibly be described by economics because it hurts a woman's feeeeeeelings and offends her Disneyian notions of romance. If you disagree, you're obviously just a bitter virgin loser. And no, there is no irony in declaring that female and male sexuality are identical, and then in the same breath trying to insult men by attacking their sex-attaining abilities!

Wow you guys totally missed the point. Women arent the ones controlling the supply, its men that arent supplying non-douchey non-PUA non-creepy relationships for women. "Men propose, women dispose" is the biggest crock sold to men as it puts the responsibility of their failures onto women and not where it belongs, with the individual man. Maybe if you guys paid attention to what was written in the article instead of reflexively defending a misogynistic video simply because it has "economics" in the title you would understand that the point the author was making was in the name of better relationships between men and women. Retreating into typical PUA/MRA blame game defensiveness is the very self destructive behaviour that the author is trying to get you econ types to understand. Painting your biases with half baked economic arguments doesnt make those biases any less false.

Well that does sound pretty Beta. EVERYTHING Is economics and markets but soon we will have virtual worlds with virtual reality relationships so it won't matter.

PUA-World, where treating women like humans and not economic transactions is considered BETA. Nice talk, I hope you have a long and fulfilling life.

I direct you both to this:

http://noahpinionblog.blogspot.ca/2014/02/stop-using-term-beta-male-to-mean-wimp.html

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Although I'm guessing JaMRC was using 'Beta' ironically.

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Yes we should totally use Omega to mean wimp! how did I not see this before.

How about we stop using euphemisms for wimp to refer to things that arent actually wimpy. Ie, sticking up for people being discriminated against, wanting to have meaningful relationships, expressing our feelings to people, etc, etc.

That video is perpetuating as many terrible male stereotypes as it does female stereo types, it should crawl back into the primordial 1950s soup that it crawled out of. I guess its science though because its "economics"

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Incorrect. In affairs of the heart, incentives don't matter.

Hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha!

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The only one here playing the blame game is you.

Care to elaborate?

Second sentence of your post:

"Women arent the ones controlling the supply, its men that arent supplying non-douchey non-PUA non-creepy relationships for women."

Everyone else is poking fun at the foolishness behind the Jezebel post.

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Except to make fun of that article and defend the thesis is pretty ridiculous even for economists. Relationships are not about "paying" for something. Relationships are mutually beneficial and all you have to do is provide utility and the other person return utility to you. There are no costs to relationships (other than opportunity costs of those you arent in a relationship with) and thats the whole point, you shouldnt go out and expect something in return because you have provided monetary value thats not how relationships work. That's how prostitution works.

The video goes on to say other ridiculous things like that men control the marriage market and that there is some kind of market failure here. Men control the marraige market because they make all the money and are virile into their 50s. What? Welcome to the 21st century.

I could go on and on, but its obvious that the video is just trying to pin the breakdown of the family on the tech shock of contraceptives and blame divorce on the fact that women can now be more choosier with who they mate with. I am sorry that this doesnt work out for all those men who view sex as an "economic" relationship.

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should read:

"Except to make fun of that article and defend the thesis of the video is pretty ridiculous even for economists."

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There are no costs to relationships (other than opportunity costs of those you arent in a relationship with)

Absolutely. For instance, in my long-distance relationship, there is no cost to gas, because magical feminist Jezebel fairies fill up my gas tank. Because love.

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@Ian Lippert

"Relationships are mutually beneficial and all you have to do is provide utility and the other person return utility to you. "

Awww, you stepped in the trap, you have to keep going.
As long as relationships are about utility at all, it's not a relationship, it's a transaction, and that's what the video and the Jezebel article both get wrong.

An interviewer once asked a volunteer with Mother Theresa if she didn't feel really good about herself, doing all that good work. She said she certainly hoped not, then she'd being doing it for the good feeling, not for the other person.

Love has to be about the other, never what we get out of it. Hard to live up to, of course. But the piece both video and article are missing. Big time. The concept of the other.

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It may be an exchange of value but it's not a monetary transaction. Yes people are in relationships for their own self interest. But there is a difference between I am hanging out with you because you are an interesting person and I am hanging out with you because you paid for lunch. The latter suggests that you have no value as a person only as a source of resources. If you view relationships like that then it might explain why you have no cache in the dating market. But that's on the individual man and not because women "control" the dating market.

To the guy in the long distance relationship. I highly doubt that she is in the relationship BECAUSE you are paying gas money. I (hope) that she's in a relationship with you because you are an interesting person to be with.

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+100 to Marie. Of course the gal gets it right.

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Please provide an example of a relationship between adults that is not about utility.

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"As long as relationships are about utility at all, it’s not a relationship, it’s a transaction, and that’s what the video and the Jezebel article both get wrong."

Just to further clarify. Even if we accept your use of the term transaction to mean an exchange of value the difference between healthy relationships and whatever that video was talking about is that real relationships are an exchange of value (a transaction if you will) that costs you nothing. That's what makes true friendship and true love so awesome. Two people benefit by doing nothing more than going about the same things they were when they were single but now they just have the added benefit of someone else in their life.

The types of "relationships" the video talks about is one in which the payer doesn't actually want to spend the time to get to know the receiver of payment and just wants to figure out the cheat codes to get into their pants. The video even hilariously (and unironically) calls several months of dates as the "cost" of getting into a "relationship".

Yes if you view people as objects of your desire and not people then there will be costs and your ability to acquire people in you life as objects will be determined by the economics of supply and demand. If however you treat people as, you know, people and take an interest in their lives then you will be rewarded by a cost free bounty of riches and happiness and you will need to spend less time watching videos about the "economics" of how to acquire people in your life.

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marie: Love has to be about the other, never what we get out of it.

that's not love, that's indentured servitude. or are you prepared to argue a husband should love a wife who refuses to have sex with him? give until it hurts, right?

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Thanks, msg.

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@Ian Lippert,

That's my example, above!

I understand, I think, what you mean -- but it's a difference in the approach to love. You love because you value the other, but not because you receive value from the other (even if it's barter and intangible, even if the value received does not reduce the goods the other has etc.). You love because the person is, not because of what he is.

I'm not an idiot, we are attracted to people because of their features, and in a loving relationship you will usually find utility. The nun above probably does get a gush of good feeling every once in awhile, but the point is she cannot do what she does *for* that gush of feeling about *herself* and still call it love. That's self-interest.

Not entirely sure what is real conversation here and what is not, though, so I'll leave it at that.

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I know what you are saying. To love someone unconditionally is to love them regardless of what they do for you. My argument may or may not address your point but the video is not talking about unconditional love. What the video is talking about was absolutely conditional love, the attempt to get someone to love you solely based on the transactional value that they are providing. Unconditional love (your argument) is above reciprocal love (my argument) which is above conditional love (what the video was talking about).

The point that I was making was that when two people are engaging in reciprocal love there is no exchange and therefore no transaction, no exchange therefore no market based on supply and demand. An exchange requires that you give something up to receive something in return which establishes a price and market forces. Reciprocal love (or friendship) is an arrangement where both party's receive utility and neither party has to pay a price. You could consider good company a positive externailty that is not captured by the market, which was the whole point of the jezebel article (ignoring for a minute the second half rant)

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Thanks, Ian, wouldn't you call that reciprocally conditional love? Because I only love on condition that I continue to receive what I've been receiving?

In any case, if we are allowed to define love our own way, I can see the author being upset at the videographer universalizing his definition, but besides that she should be happy to let him call love what he calls love as I should be happy to let you call love what you call love, and etc.

An alternative is for us to strive for love (which you'd call unconditional love), understanding that what we hit is sometimes those things you label reciprocal or conditional, and that sometimes that's on the way to love, and sometimes it's in the way of love (stark conditional, I suspect you and I would agree, is pretty in the way of it).

Good discussion.

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I agree, good convo.

Maybe conditional is too vague a term since all relationships are conditional on something, ie being a person the individual enjoys spending time with.

Transactional love might have been a better term since the claim was that for love to be about utility it must involve a transaction. Transaction implies an exchange and relationships as described in the video has the outdated idea that men exchange their resources to receive goods from the sex market.

But the reality of healthy relationships is that they have no costs and you don't have to give up anything to the person you are in a relationship with and they don't have to give up anything to you. The positive externalities you bring into the world by being an awesome person means that when two awesome people get together their interaction with each other is nothing but pure welfare gains.

It's truly tragic that this video speaks to people because it means that they have had problems in their lives achieving true love/friendship. And the terrible part is that when they watch this pseudo scientific videos that justify their biases. Instead of getting the help they need they follow strategies wherein they start treating people with which they can acquire transactional value and that make them less awesome to hang out with. When you get to point where you are calculating your date expenditure to hookups ratio you've fallen so far down the skill tree of human interaction that the only mates you will find are broken travellers like yourself.

It's really hard to pull out of this self destructive spiral because you are now in the grip of your own twisted selection bias. You can only acquire relationships by showering a mate with money so you only attract the gold digging mates, leading you to convince yourself that all mates are gold diggers and you have no need for self improvement leading you to continue to lack the skills to meet good people. Rinse and repeat ad infinitum.

Now we could just say that everyone can have their definition of love but the fact is that these conservative family values types want to perpetuate their biases for political gain. So their definition of love is not exactly harmless as it's attempting to regress our views of sexuality back to a time when women had fewer reproductive rights. It is this repression that is the target of the jezebel authors ranting.

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"Maybe if you guys paid attention to what was written in the article"

When an article's ultimate riposte is "SNIFF MY DONG" (allcaps in the original), I'm not sure it merits the attention you wish to give it.

I wasn't aware the currency of Vietnam was scented.Are they like those old scratch and sniff stickers?

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The obnoxiousness of the Jezebel article is a direct reflection of the obnoxiousness of the "economic" arguments that the article comments on. I agree, TC shouldnt link us to obnoxious garbage.

"But he did it first!" is an argument that even my eight year-old knows better than to use.

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No. Through all the concern trolling going on in here there is actually a very important point being made between the video and the article. If you are going to dismiss one over concerns of tone then you should dismiss the other. If you actually want to discuss the topic then we should accept that both pieces are obnoxious and move on to the actual points being discussed.

I have zero problem with people being obnoxious on the internet if they are saying interesting things. Others seem to only have a problem with obnoxious people on the internet when its not people they already agree with.

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"Oh, shut the fuck up." She explained.

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There's not really any point to a rant whose entire response to the statement that sex obeys economic laws is "Shut the fuck up". All it does is show that the ranter is invincibly ignorant, and entirely incapable of rational thought.

No it means that the video was incredibly offensive and pissed someone off enough for them to use naughty words. The first half of the article is actually fairly calm and thoughtful if you can't handle a few bad words you probably shouldn't be on the Internet.

Concern trolling is just a facade used so people can claim a superior argument to those that they are pissing off. It's funny how delicate people get when they are looking to dismiss any argument they disagree with and it's completely unsurprising that this delicacy is not equally applied to the video under question which presents an offensive mish mash of conservative 1950s stereotypes that are attempting to roll us back to the "good old days" when women had fewer rights because their reproductive cycle was out of their control.

If you are truly concerned about tone on the Internet then it would be beneficial to understand the source of that anger instead of dismissing legitimate complaints out of hand.

In terms of logical power, "shut the fuck up" is no different than "please stop saying that"

They're both examples of the desire to remain "invincibly ignorant and entirely incapable of rational thought." She (I assume) isn't being bashed primarily for the tone.

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Retreating into typical PUA/MRA blame game defensiveness

spot the irony.

ps as women are the gatekeepers of sex, their behavior in the sexual market will create greater downstream effects. women are supplied "pua" lovers because those are the men women are choosing to screw.

Women are not the gatekeepers of sex. There are plenty of lonely women out there. I think when people say that they mean that beautiful women are the gatekeeper of a particular kind of sex that men are looking for. Have you never had a conversation with men about 5's and 6's?

And guess what? handsome men are the gatekeepers of sex also. Lots of girls get turned down by men that are out of their league. Men that have never been friends with a woman and only seek out highly sought after women get a completely biased view of gender relations, the kind of bias that creates ridiculous aphorisms like "men propose, women dispose"

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I'd snicker, but people make a very similar argument against the applicability of S/D price floor models to the minimum wage debate, so ...

Bahaha... that was exactly the analogue I had in mind--"low wage earners are people too, they couldn't possibly be described by S/D curves!" followed by character assaults.

I actually had in mind the line of thinking (hard to find via search atm) that says "employment is a *relationship*; you're not just buying labor off a shelf", which is true but completely orthogonal to whether S/D curves make sense to apply.

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West is saying this particular attempt was BS, and that many economic models are based on incorrect assumptions.

Sounds correct to me..

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#1: Interesting!

But the NYT writing style grates on me for some reason. It's like 5th grade reading level pretending to be something higher - the article doesn't go together well, and the editing seems flat out incorrect in spots.

It's also not very information dense.

Bolivia is almost a mythical place. Potosi was on a Chinese map with New York hardly mentioned in the early development of the Americas. Now it is a dusty small mining city where the most upscale restaurant has a small rundown dog house outside. The Indians were treated like drill bits in extracting the silver. Morales blockaded the roads before his election. Probably this article is written with liberal spin but apparently terrible conflict hasn't erupted and some accommodation has occurred.

Where did I complain about spin?

The article didn't affect me the same way as it did you. The recent problems in Venezuela* may be avoided by the method of partial nationalization of the resource industries undertaken by the Maduro regime. That seems to me to be the hypothesis that flows from the article; how much 'spin' is involved in laying the groundwork for that hypothesis is my concern.

*http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2014-02-21/venezuela-and-chavez-s-deadly-endgame.html

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#6: If you click on the author's name, you get a list of her published articles. Currently at the top is 'Bad News Internet Trolls: Loneliness is more dangerous than Obesity'. Perhaps she should re-read it.

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#6, she's not balking about economics being applied to romance and sex, she's protesting the conclusions drawn. Not an economics thing.

Disappointing article, never knew you could put that much cussing in something and still be so dull.

My thoughts exactly. It's obvious that the video is awful and it portrays a crudely constructed model of the mating market.

The author's response is taking aim at so many things it's hard to tell what she's mad at, and the vulgar language distracts from her point.

There's isn't any point except to point and splutter. If she actually says anything true or useful, it's only at random.

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This.

Although as mentioned she is all over the place so its difficult to defend. Perhaps we are giving her the benefit of the doubt.

The language likely related to driving views/clicks in blogging. So perhaps the real topic here is the effect that the economic realities of blogging has on transparent discourse.

I'm pretty sure this kind of unhinged, profanity-laced discoursed originated among radical feminists long before the internet.

Yes, but due to the influence Gawker media in the post-Sicha/Coen era, now we have to read this crap in our social media feeds all day.

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Most important story of the day, and possible the decade:

http://www.reuters.com/article/2014/02/19/us-whatsapp-facebook-idUSBREA1I26B20140219

1. You mean yesterday?

2. Why this is important escapes me. Have used WhatsApp for quite some time. It's just another messaging app - I'd already moved on to Line months ago.

I suppose it is true that some commentors on this blog are a bit narrow minded when it comes to understanding the future of technology

AOL Instant Messnger: The future of technology.

In one word: Synergy

With Facebook's analytics now having full access to Whatsap chats the ability for Facebook to target ads at users is going to be vastly magnified. This means that consumers can now much more easily connect with products they find interesting and novel vastly increasing the efficiency of their consumption and the productivity of marketing functions. Marketing is one of the crucial industries of the future and this sort of surge in productivity is going to translate into huge wealth creation.

Honestly reading about this buyout for the first time sent shivers up my spine when I thought about the sheer genius and vision of Mark Zuckerburg.

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Synergy: Invented on February 19, 2014.

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#6: To understand liberal feminism you merely need to read her exact words:

"Stop telling me that my lived experience is "nothing" compared to some numbers ..."

"And I literally do not give one shit if you disagree, because this is not a debate."

"I reject your numbers."

She is uninterested in debate or knowledge. She has her feelings, and following her feelings is the path to truth. Numbers make her feel bad, thus the numbers must be wrong and evil.

+1

She is trying to promote herself sexually (Google search Lindy West Jezebel). The status quo hasn't been kind to her so being a leftist she thinks she can redefine human nature because she believes in the blank slate (sexual standards are created by the environment not biology). She always fails and that's why she is so bitter.

It was a good video.

Wow, so sexual standards are not socially constructed? I guess that's why every different society now and through out history has always had the exact same ones...

male sexual attractiveness standards have been shown again and again to be fairly universal (with some minor exceptions in Indonesia and certain african tribes). even throughout time we find that men preferred the same female body type -- hourglass shaped, 0.7 waist-hip ratio., 17-23 BMI. see here for a start on your journey to abandoning vapid feelgood boilerplate:

http://heartiste.wordpress.com/2007/11/27/same-three-girls/

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Wrong. She is saying their argument is based on assumptions that are wrong.

She is pointing out a counter-example (herself). Seems like a good start to a debate to me.

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#1 Great News on Bolivia but haven't we heard this story before? South America country has really fast growth due higher commodity price X which lowers poverty and make everything better.

I do wonder in the long run as countries continue to trade and specialize more, doesn't that create an increase chance of financial crisis when the the specialize market price drops?

No, this time it's different: A leftist-populist who takes no salary and lives in a shack is in power.

Changes everything.

To be fair, the leftist-populist who lives in a shack tends to have a much better time dealing with corruption than the leftist-populist who becomes a billionaire while in power (like in Venezuela and Argentina).
My guess would be Bolivian rule of law will be a lot stronger in the future because of this, and that definitely will help get out of the commodities only kind of economy.

umm, I'll just leave this here.... http://en.mediamass.net/people/evo-morales/highest-paid.html

umm... can't tell if you are sending that link as a joke or if you actually believe it to be real.

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You mean they can put stuff on the Internet that isn't true? Crap!

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I think what is earning plaudits is that countries leftist government being willing to develop capital reserves at a time of high commodity prices rather than immediately appropriate/redistribute the money. Chile is another example of a more moderate government that jumped the right way when commodity prices soared. Venezuela being the obvious rejoinder.

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This must be y'all's first exposure to jezebel. Pretty much all the articles sound just like that.

They're fighting the stereotype that women are emotional basket-cases, don't you see?

actual laughter was produced

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+1.

I hope people here don't think Jezebel is in any way important or influential in the feminist movement. They used to garner some respect in feminist quarters, but those days are long gone. Everything there is click bait.

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Oh! I almost missed the story about cows producing 25 gallons of milk a day. Is there even time to bottle that?

And if that is somehow connected with the Jezebel article about buying the cow when you can get the milk for free, do I get a prize for figuring it out?

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WTF has happened to this comment section? :(

It's a kind of Ideological Turing Test. 'Just Another MR Commentor' is having fund parroting/parodying some of the silly memes that float around here. Sometimes he gets an unsilly meme in his net though.

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It's difficult to know what to say anymore, huh.

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Everyone is out of work due to automation and outsourcing so we are filling our time on this wonderful (albeit pompous) blog. Disclosure - I am long paper gold.

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I still don't know who won the superbowl.

What's a "superbowl"?

Surely someone from Washington or Colorado could enlighten us on the matter.

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That's where they play REAL football. :)

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I don't even own a TV!

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@6 I was prepared to hate the article. But the video gets the economics completely wrong and it this, more than anything else, which provoked the columnist's ire.

The group which the pill is worst for is not women but richer older men who are both ugly and boring. Before the pill it was dangerous for women to have sex with handsome and exciting men. Consequently, old ugly boring men with money became desirable as they were feasible mates.

Now the old ugly boring men with money are no longer desirable. This means that they must turn to prostitutes. It also causes them to donate money to the Austin Institute for the Study of Family and Culture.

women can get pregnant from rich old men too. did you fail biology 101? or are you just a butthurt feminist flailing uselessly for whatever non-argument alights in your fathead?

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Exactly. Before the pill rich old ugly dudes like Donald trump could get gorgeous women to have sex with them and even have babies with them. But now thanks to the pill, and women's greater financial independence, they have to resort to....oh wait.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Melania_Trump
Shit.

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Cohle was actually referring to Jezebel when he told Hart: "you can't spot crazy pussy."

+1 for True Detective

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#6. I attempted to read her obscenity laced rant (is that a tautology?) but other than "I am not a number", I couldn't find much substance.
So, three comments that should obviously be in the record by now, and yet are not:
1. Must be PMS
2. I wonder if she's blonde?
3. I bet she's cute when she's angry...
On a substantitive level, TC stumbled on this one, imho. Trolls I can read anywhere (in fact I don't need to go far from home, lol). Substantitive pieces is what I've come to expect here, and this is certainly NOT one.
Anyway. Women aren't expected to be / capable of being logical when they're angry (#4).
LOL

She's not blonde and she's never cute.... She's bitter cause the patriarchy is telling her how to feel man cause she doesn't fit their cookie cutter image of what a woman should be. Jezebel logical! Good one! But really she just can't admit that she's low value mate material so she's got to rationalize her position somehow.

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Economics arguably can tell us something about sex relationships or at least give us one perspective to think about them. And the website linked here is unfortunate as it presents a weak argument against applying economics to these topics. But one would think that neuroscience, psychology, and sociology can tell us at least as much, and probably much more, about these topics than economics. Perhaps some anger is based on a perception, maybe (hopefully) false, that economists tend to discount the other social and behavior sciences and think they can completely explain these phenomena - a clearly ridiculous claim. And if that is indeed the claim being implicitly made, one wonders why the author chose such a weak example of the types of responses people have to the economics angle. Let's post a link to Foucault and then see if we get the same kind of throw-away line responses.

Its worse than that. The video's "economic" argument fails to understand that there can can be mutually beneficial arrangements that don't involve transactions of social or physical goods. It seems many in these comments fail to understand that point also, which the Jezebel article put forward with a clear, if somewhat colorful, argument.

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Economics deploys the tools of psychology, neuroscience, and sociology.

It's better.

This may be true but what the Austin Institute does in that video is not economics. Economics employs statistics and carefully selected variables not stereotypes and bias.

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But I thought that, except for perhaps behavioral economics (which Austrian economists try to discount), in economics preferences are taken as given. It is all based on the rational choice theory of the individual. If preferences are given then it cannot really account for the things the other disciplines successfully examine: culture, social structure, varied internal states. Despite protests to the contrary, economists have to posit that what they mean when they say that people want the most "goods" for the lowest "cost" has to be strictly material goods and costs. Otherwise economics has no predictive ability. If they don't do that the whole enterprise becomes tautology: person A did this because it maximized his own subjective utility (without consistently defining what a good or cost for that particular person is) could seem to fit any hypothesis.

Exactly, economics is not trying to explain why people have preferences (thats the realm of psychology) and when they do (behavioural econ) it is almost always limited to preferences as a consumer or producer of a physical good or service.

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#6: Anything that offends those people must be good and true.

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BEIJING, Feb. 21 (Xinhua) -- A Beijing-based Tibetology scholar has criticized the Dalai Lama's Friday meeting with U.S. President Barack Obama in the White House, saying it was another "anti-China farce." "Once again, the Dalai Lama slipped into the White House Map Room for a so-called 'unofficial meeting' with Obama. This was another farce against China," said Lian Xiangmin, a researcher with the China Tibetology Research Center, in a signed article.

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