Friday assorted links


Warriors are gonna win the next 2 titles but then probably that's it. Klay Thompson becomes a free agent then, and may want to try his own thing away from the Superfriends. Draymond Green is a FA the next year. Everyone will be older too, and the rest of the league will have time to catch them. But the next 2 years, barring major injury, are theirs.

#4 I am surprised that no scientist has discovered a Bactria that can be added to the cow intestines to reduce gas.

A bactrian is a different animal altogether. (Couldn't resist!)

When one hump is not sufficient.

#3 Alas, China has banned the satellites because they do not have an encryption backdoor.

#6 Even the Sharks or the Jets can beat the Warriors.

#6. If the Spurs are able to land Chris Paul or Kyle Lowry, they have a legitimate chance at knocking off the Warriors next season. The offense is methodical and slows the game down, but still able to get good looks at the basket. Leonard is the lengthy defender needed to cover Durant on the perimeter. Furthermore, Aldridge is a solid big who can post-up in the paint and score down low.

The Cavs are too dependent on Kyrie and LeBron to do everything. Each are solid basketball players, but the Cavs' offense is more of a one-on-one contest compared to the Spurs who swing and move the ball around.

Don't forget my Minnesota Timberwolves! Great young roster. The young guns just need to learn to play defense.

#1 - click bait??? Here I thought the great American historian James Patterson was reviewing Tyler's book (which I have indeed read). Instead, it's the James Patterson from Ave Maria University (more click bait???) rather than the esteemed James Patterson who is professor emeritus of history at Brown University. Yes, I clicked on the review but did not read it and no I did not click to find out anything about Ave Maria University.

I thought it was James B. Patterson, pulp fiction near billionaire (much to everybody's surprise, it's not just Roland who's rich from books).
Wikipedia: James Brendan Patterson (born March 22, 1947) is an American author and philanthropist. Among his work are the Alex Cross, Michael Bennett, Women's Murder Club, Maximum Ride, Daniel X, NYPD Red, Witch and Wizard, and Private series, as well as many stand-alone thrillers, non-fiction and romance novels. His books have sold more than 300 million copies[1] and he was the first person to sell 1 million e-books.[2] In 2016, Patterson topped Forbes's list of highest-paid authors for the third consecutive year, with an income of $95 million.[3] His total income over a decade is estimated at $700 million.[4]

Ray - Good catch!! I've read some of the early Alex Cross books and they were quite good but then Patterson got to formulaic. I don't think he would be a logical reviewer of Tyler's works.

@AG-- OK, I give in. I normally don't read modern fiction unless it's classic but I downloaded a free copy of this book and will give it a try: "Along Came A Spider – December 1, 1993 by James Patterson". Seems Patterson has this story set in Washington, DC, and given that I'm there at the moment, it might make for some interesting reading.

@Ray - that's one of the good ones. All the Alex Cross books are DC based as that is where he works.

Here's what the Ave Maria Patterson writes about Cowen: "The praise for [Jack] Ma reveals something about Cowen that should give the reader (and Cowen himself) pause: his tendency to idolize tech moguls."

"I did not click to find out anything about Ave Maria University."
Not even who chose the catchy name?

Tyler, did you intend to list #3 next to #4? That's quite an illuminating contrast.

#6, What really fascinates me here is the economics: A salary cap so low that stars see their regular pay as a rounding error build a league that has more to do with, say, La Liga soccer, where the teams that win all the time just have the most dough, than the NFL, where there is more parity.

The reason top players go to Real Madrid and Barcelona is that they'll pay a benchwarmer better than the 4th richest team pays their entire squad. in the NBA, playing with other stars means more championships, which means more money from sponsors.

In both cases, there's all kinds of incentives that make change undesirable for the people that could change it. if there was parity in La Liga, the top teams would get far worse, and wouldn't be perennial favorites in international competition, which brings a lot of money. In the NBA, the league would have to do crazy things like take away sponsor income, NCAA style, and then evenly distribute that income across teams. Good luck trying that with grown men and without the insane 'we are giving the kids an education' fig leaf.

It's a pity that in the world of esports, the one piece of the pie that is growing, we aren't seeing any innovation to try to avoid ending up in the exact same situation as traditional sports. Ultimately all competitive entertainment will directly compete with each other, and It'd not surprise me if the winner was decided by the best economic structure that guarantees a better product.

@Bob - La Liga doesn't have a revenue sharing policy for television money (though one is planned). Barcelona and Madrid keep getting richer at the expense of all the other Spanish teams. The English Premier League is the most equitable and also generates the most money because of their international branding efforts. Each EPL team gets about $100M/year in television revenue and even very poor English teams can pay more in salary than many storied Euro teams such as Ajax of Amsterdam (my club). Ajax made it to the finals of the Europa League this season and their annual operating budget is about 1/6 of Manchester United (their opponent).

Television money is only one aspect. The German league does not have a rich television contact but Bayern, who are marketing geniuses, generate enough money to compete with everyone in Europe. Euro football is totally different because of the segmentation of the various countries.

Don't worry too much, the NBA product is fine, it's always been a star-driven and lack of parity league. The eras everyone points at as the best ones are the ones where 1-2 teams dominated: the Lakers and Celtics 80s, the Bulls 90s, the Warriors and Cavs present. The times when there was more parity in the NBA are generally considered down periods, like the 2000s and the 1970s

The Cavs have an expensive team ($45M luxury tax?) and according to Forbes was not profitable last year but GS has just a slightly above median total for player salaries, so it's not about just money

I don't think it is reasonable to expect a mean of 1.7 titles and consider 3+ "shocking" (< 5% chance?) That would be a bizarre distribution of results.

Agreed, that comment makes no sense. That requires you to believe at least a 70% chance of 2 more titles, but 3 is negligible? Ridiculous. Plenty of evidence in league history that a premier team core can win 5 titles. It's happened at least 3 times already, which account for > 25% of the league titles.

After 2 years one of the team core (Klay Thompson) is a free agent and he may want to go to his own team after winning 4 titles in 5 years, plus he will command a salary above what the Ws will be able to pay. Then a year later Draymond Green can leave as well, and the same issue applies.

The core will be together for sure 2 more years, after that likely not. The 2 remaining will then be on the wrong side of 30.

I'm not saying they can't or won't win 3+ but my best guess is just the 2.

Re: #6, here's an interesting hypothetical team put together to fit under the salary cap and be better than Golden State.

Tyler, are you making a straussian call for political revolution? For an age of ideology again? Its hard to tell sometimes.

The political, transcendent, and the non-complacent.

Do you think there such a thing as a rational political revolution, a revolution spearheaded by the likes of economists, or is this a contradiction in terms?

These guys argue that getting a few independents into legislatures would change the dynamic.

I offer another review of 'The Complacent Class' here:

Re Previous: Night Dreaming Problem Solving

Confirmation of my previous assertion that the above process is quirky but novel and has more dedicated time associated with it.

""" Einstein ... reportedly slept for at least 10 hours per day – nearly one and a half times as much as the average American today (6.8 hours). ... Einstein’s theory of special relativity, have supposedly occurred while he was dreaming about cows being electrocuted."""

the west and cavs r declining faster than GS. They will deter other super-team combos by guys. 8 figure paycut to lose anyway?


On #1, so here we go again with yet another reviewer who does not get what Noah Smith and i get that probably a solid msjority of those whom Tyler labels "complacent" are far from it. They are mostly scared and so hanging on desperately to whatever they have. Again, median real wages have barely moved in 40 years, measured happiness levels have slipped, life expectancy of poorer white women is declining,and so on. The complacent would probably include tenured academics like me and Tyler as well as some chunk of the upper income and wealth stata, maybe as much as the top 20%, but possibly a good deal less. Most of those people finding what they want (including each other) are definitely upper stratum types, not the smoking opiate taking poorer people losing out in our current socio-economic situation.

#5 I am not convinced the author has ever been inside a Pachinko parlor, or ever talked with a Pachinko player. The article smells like the author read something on the internet and decided to retell it will a Bitcoin tie-in.

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