Thursday assorted links


1. The corect link for anyone interested is

Remember to turn on javascript first.

An effective way to save Rhinos :

Great link - thanks

#5 Good link. Good dollop of anthropomorphism: "Manuela is no doubt pleased (in her own tortoisey way) to be reunited with the family that had so long thought her gone forever."

True or false?

Ethicists: tortoise abuse? They're giving Manuela back to the family?

#1 I wonder if one can find some inexpensive substitutes for rhino horn (perhaps cow horns---I believe what is sold is the ground rhino horn), and remove any penalties for misrepresenting the concoction as rhino horn. One can then try to flood the market and drive down the price.

The problem is that those who still want rhino horn (and tiger bones, for another example) are engaging in magical thinking. The rhino horns (which really aren't horns, they're composed mostly of keratin) have no actual medicinal value. It's the long-held beliefs of what the rhino horn represents that is being traded upon.

The Chinese pharmacies that is selling the rhino horn power can (and probably already do) substitute all kinds of junk for the actual horn. Having actual horns is probably more for advertising value. And some rhino horns go to the middle east to be made into the handles of traditional daggers for very wealthy men. It's not a matter of finding a substitute. It's curing people of magical thinking and the need for very conspicuous symbols of wealth.

#3 - The al Qaeda oath, "I state in the presence of God that I will slaughter infidels for my entire life."

Kill Americans – “duty of every Muslim”

"Why do they hate us?"

So living off 17 girlfriends is fraud in China? I don't know if it is in the West, but you have to admire someone for trying it. I mean, it is a lot of hard work. Surely it would have been easier just to get a job?

I am reserving judgment until Ray Lopez weighs in.

1. Will poisoning rhino horns protect the rhinos?

The US has a mild history of trying this by poisoning alcohol during Prohibition and I believe heroin in more recent times. I can think of one or two ethical issues involved.

"poisoning alcohol during Prohibition"

They still do.

Surreptitiously adulterating alcohol meant for human consumption with toxic chemicals? Today?

Source, please.

"Denatured alcohol, also called methylated spirits or spiritus, is ethanol that has additives to make it poisonous, extremely bad tasting, foul smelling or nauseating, to discourage recreational consumption. In some cases it is also dyed." wikipedia

#1 -Great idea. But, as Jeff pointed out, privatization should also be effective.
#2 -Never believe any human interest story out of China in the Western press. Especially, but not exclusively, online.
#3 -Al-Qaeda central's formal and bureaucratic nature has long been the stuff of jokes in the West. But, seriously, how else are they expected to organize recruits?
#5 -This is why you shouldn't live in tropical countries, people.

"Will poisoning rhino horns protect the rhinos?"

Did poisoning alcohol stop people from distributing and drinking that alcohol during prohibition?

Betteridge's law in action.


TThe Al-Ciada job application form looks like what a Washington DC bureaucrat would imagine a AlCiada job application to look if DC level idiocy is commonplace in all work environments.

Read this in the context of secular stagnation:

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