Friday assorted links


3. Perhaps I'll watch later, but for those who don't like videos, here's John McWhorter on the same subject (why do we have both scatter and shatter, for instance?):

Oh, and for those at work who are reluctant to click on the nekkid lady, she's just a roly-poly blur.

McWhorter: There is no other language, for example, that is close enough to English that we can get about half of what people are saying without training

Declare Scots a separate language (as is fairly reasonable), problem solved ;)

(Seriously, that's a legacy of England being a bit more on it with political centralisation, and the good old Act of Union; no regional languages left with enough of a constituency to try and get them declared languages).

Might explain why the Irish Republic part of the Union left - it had enough of not being a constituency, and just declared its language as it wished.

There has been a move to make a fuss of Ulster Scots as a tongue.

The funniest fact I know about it is that it's from Ulster Scots that the Oirish learned the Scots word "crack" (meaning conversation): they've even invented a cod-Gaelic spelling for it, "craic". Quelle hoot!

I'm dying. "Quelle hoot!" This is why I can't stop loving the internet.

It's adapted from Truman Capote.

3. This man is a gem.

6. Weren't they saying the same thing about Minecraft a few years ago?

And World of War Craft before that. It's a classic case of trending from an S curve before it's hit the top of the S.

Fortnite popularity is trending down -- which probably explains why this piece exists.

Fortnite was all my kids wanted to play last 6-12 months ago, before any adult even knew what it was. They had plenty of expensive games to play, but they ignored them, as did all their friends. There was no need for people to write about how great it was. About the only thing that got written was "Where did this amazing game come from?"

But nothing lasts forever. So now Fortnite needs articles telling people it's amazing. Good luck with that. The kids will find the Next Great Thing and tell us what it is.

Guess you didn’t read the piece.

Is it a key point here that it's not just a game but the hot new social meetup space? If so the writer sure takes his sweet time to finally get there. (And uses "unpack," a verb that should be wrapped in chains and dumped out to sea)

Basically yes, but some of the details were interesting. I liked this bit:

"The proof of Fortnite’s unique potential was demonstrated live on February 1, 2019. At 2pm Eastern, the Marshmello (who ranks #10 in DJ Magazine’s Top 100) held a live concert that was held exclusively inside Fortnite. The event, which was live synced to the real Marshmello, was attended by more than 10MM in the game – with millions more watching live via Twitch and YouTube – many of whom used their characters’ user-specific dance moves to join in. The event was stunning. And it showcases the potential of the Metaverse (including payment for performances, music rights, etc.), wherein a user can have potentially unlimited experiences inside a single medium."

I think the author took his "sweet time" because there are many dimensions to Fortnite and Epic Games. I've watched my son play it (along with co-workers and friends) and it's appeal definitely extends beyond "tweens". I have watched him play Call of Duty, Metal Gear Solid and Madden and Fortnite is the latest. He was here two weekends ago and was playing it on his phone.


Yup, and didn't SimCity have a similar thing going for awhile?

Several months ago I read a sort of travel article by someone who visited Second Life to see what was going on there. Not much, and the people who are still hanging out there seem to like their isolation and are often not eager to talk with visitors.

That being said, yeah online games are a big part of 21st century entertainment, and increasingly culture.

#6 - Fortnite - this is incorrect: "As a result, just about anyone anywhere can play Fortnite and with almost any device. In addition, every Fortnite player – no matter the device – can play one another. This ubiquitous cross-integration is rarely seen in the game industry. In fact, it was only made possible through the game’s extraordinary success, which forced Sony to abandon more than a decade of online isolationism and allow cross-play with Xbox, PC and others (and not just for Fortnite)." - it was announced a few months ago that Sony will segregate PlayStation users from PC users when playing Fortnite, since the latter, due to hardware speeds, have an unfair advantage over the former. I agree with this decision, as it's so easy to be killed by PC users when you're using the kludgy PSIV controller.

Bonus trivia: I notice my trend-following hot Filipino girl half my age is playing less and less Fortnite, so I think RatInPutinsMaze is right in that the growth is a logistic curve (S-shaped).

“I notice my trend-following hot Filipino girl half my age is playing less and less Fortnite”

She’s a chick. After the novelty of the various dance moves wears off, how excited is she going to run around picking up ammo and getting all fired up about whether a blue or green shotgun is best?

I've never played the game (chess is my passion) but she's finished in the top 10 many times, via a 'wait and see' passive chick strategy. She never builds fortresses (she get mad at me when I mention she should build a wall when being fired at) and I've seen her kill a more highly skilled opponent through a lucky head shot. Imagine being a skilled Fortnite player and being taken out by a chick with a head shot! But it's happened in real life, a famous crusader was once killed by a trebuchet manned by women.

Bonus trivia: a chess maneuver in the endgame involving critical squares is called a trebuchet.

"Minecraft" = thoughtful small children, "Fortnite" = "tweens"?
Seems like a generic shooter with bad graphics and that awful cod-Pixar-y art style to me... any special reasons why this metastasizing into what "Second Life" wanted to be? Or are these things just random like that...?

Fortnite = Minecraft kids five years later.

You can’t hide your lack of skills. You can’t use in game purchases to success.

90% of the time the best players (out of the initial 100) will be in the end-game.

It’s fun, fast, action packed, and there’s a new game every few minutes. Exciting “Hunger Games” format.

#2: the jokes really write themselves here. I'll go with 'let's hope this doesn't become a trend; economists are about the last class of people on earth you want to see naked.'

"on the other hand.."

"First, assume a suit of clothes..."

“dismal science”?

"Deflationary Event. "
"Guns or butter is just a thought experiment, lady, not diet advice."

I think it's an important metaphor.

This fat woman running amok in the buff is as rational as are the illogic for Britain staying in the EU; and for the EU's existence in the first place.

In the recent referendum, the British people expressed their opposition over being subjugated to an undemocratic structure (unelected bureaucrats, central bankers, and technocrats) in Brussels, and Europe's hegemons in Berlin: the Fourth Reich without the blitzkrieg, lebensraum, or death camps. The Eurozone is a dark place - economically, politically, and socially, which was ill-conceived and misbegotten.

she's not fat!

The Warden won't allow me to look at pics of necked womyn.


NEVER EVER CALL A WOMAN FAT! She will kill you. And then eat you

Replace EU with US and demonstrate you understand they are basically the same.

Why should California be bound to West Virginia's desire for poverty, pollution, early death, and staying stuck in 1900.

Why should West Virginia be bound by California's desire for change, diversity,immigration, high cost of living funding high incomes, eliminating fossil fuels.

And the US Federal unelected officials far outstrip the EU in number and power.

And clearly various states need their own money and central bank as much as Greece supposedly does, especially West Virginia.

And after BRAC, California gets much less benefit from taxes for wars, but would prefer that spending go to space development at 60s levels, railroads like 1865-85, roads like Ike's Interstates. For the South, they benefit from taxes funding more costly wars.

The EU is stuck about where the US was in the 20s. A big crisis like the Great Depression and/or WWIII would expand the EC power to match Congress and Executive today. A significant part of the problem is too little EU power and members thinking they as sovereign as Alabama, Georgia, Virginia in 1860.

That's how the EU operates, expanding its powers opportunistically crisis by crisis without popular mandate. At least you're honest about how it would get there - better than the 80-90% of supporters of remaining in the EU in Britain who want no further powers transferred to the EU* and some who want fewer, but support remaining anyway.

Not that there's much evidence that greater political integration does much for quality of governance or growth, and that smaller nations often do better on these measures than any matched aggregated territory of the same number of souls.

* - Yet general backers of remaining in the EU they still believe in remaining in this institution that will try to take on further powers, and congratulate themselves on their intelligence...

The EU is the same as the US except that each EU member state is a country with a language, an army, a history ....

Can we watch the gorillas again?

2. Shouldn't this feature in your new "women in economics" series instead? Anyway, Dr Bateman's performance should silence all those misogynists in the discipline (looking at you, Larry Summers) who do not take women seriously. This is what pure reason looks like:


Reminds of an old adage ("All hat, no brains."). Reworked: "All boobs, no brains."

Mad Cow Disease vs. Toxic Masculinity.

It's really pathetic the number of women who think the best way to get attention is to take off their clothes. It has severe negative externalities in that it causes everyone to take all women less seriously, as witness the fact that Tyler features this woman above many whose intellectual accomplishments are more impressive. How can someone have as little self-respect as this woman?

depends on the woman who takes off her clothes. If it was brigitte bardot, we may be having a different conversation.

You're showing your age, Bardot is 84.

Better her than Joan Robinson.

"My body, my choice" strangely never applies when I masterbate on the subway

Now that you mention it, when I sent a few very classy dickpicks to a few girls, I got into serious trouble.

You should have become a hecto-billionaire first, like Bezos did.

$ize Matters

Pecker peeked at Bezo's dick pic

Anyone who really believes that should be a libertarian. It's funny how "my body, my choice" only means that you should be allowed to prostitute yourself or abort your baby, but not that you should be able to ingest what you want, use the service provider that you want, etc. Very selective.

it's selective as long as you don't turn it into a public health issue and incur more debt for "the state". Harm reduction is the hallmark of public health, designed to stop the financial bleeding associated with chronic threats to the financial integrity of our amazingly beautiful healthcare system. (sarcasm) Who really cares about your prostitution, abortion or eating glass or whatever, as long as you keep it to yourself and don't drive up cost? Virtually every person wants access to quality healthcare at an affordable price. But Libertarians think the best way to achieve this is by decreasing the power of central government to focus more free markets. It only makes public health interventions look paternalistic, when all I really see is stop-gap efforts.

1. Oh brave new world that has such potato chips in it!?

The crumbs at the bottom of the chip bag are often the tastiest, because all the salt and flavoring sinks down there. As usual, The Simpsons got there first. Homer: "Aaah, the last peanut. Overflowing with the oil and salt of its departed brothers..."

Forget the greasy fingers. The unanswered challenge here is to make every chip taste like the last chip.

1) Old world, "You're so lazy you have this zero-effort thing down to a science." Modern world, "hold my beer."

2) Cambridge economist unexpectedly increases desire to leave EU monetary union. News at 11.

3) And here I was thinking that AAAAARRRRRGGGGGGHHHH was a buccaneer influence on the English language. I stand corrected.

4) Low expectations. However musically he did just that, so I'm sure he'd think everyone's even.

#1 Such is life in Trump's America.

'Cambridge economist unexpectedly increases desire to leave EU monetary union. '

You do know that the British were never part of the Eurozone, right?

Yes. What I find infinitely more curious is Tyler's strange avoidance of AOC's 'Green Leap Forward'...

I wonder why there's no post about this? Probably because it also got taken down suddenly last night....


Well, there’s the whole no high speed rail service to Ethiopia problem.

"Yes. What I find infinitely more curious is Tyler's strange avoidance of AOC's 'Green Leap Forward'..."

He's probably got a Bloomberg article on that waiting on the next column cycle. You don't want to waste a big, high ratings story early.

There is no way that Tyler touches AOC's long-awaited masterpiece. A proposal so incredible, she had to delete it off her website in shame after less than 24 hours. A proposal so popular, you could not find a trace of it being mentioned ON THE CNN WEBSITE.

It has been dubbed the Fyre Festival of Politics, as it should.

AOC is the gift that keeps on giving, and I hope she never stops.

4. Haile Selassie (chosen name meaning power of the trinity) was at the time of his overthrow viewed quite negatively (and justly so). But today he is looked upon very positively. And the reason is that he was overthrown by the communist Derg, a violent tyrannical regime, that made Hailie Selassie look good in retrospect.

I never quite understand this line of thought. Was there anyone in 1944 Ethiopia who would be better?

The author faults Selassie for not ending slavery in Ethiopia sooner. Great, how exactly was he supposed to do that? Menelik, after all was amputating limbs of slave traders. Far from being an all powerful dictator, Selassie faced the same difficulties as many centralizing states - his writ was limited by the forces in opposition.

After all Selassie lacked the power to even convert the government's economy from a feudal tenure system to a modern progressive income tax. Parts of his military actively attempted a coup multiple times from both the left and the right.

He further was not in a position to be an independent actor in the cold war. It is all well and good to play the middle, but realistically the US is not going to contain Siad Barre just for Ethiopia to be free. The USSR massively subsidized Egypt and Somalia; and Sudan which did try its hand at being fully independent of the West and East ended up mired in a civil war for its troubles.

Being a liberator and a freedom fighter is all well and good, but in the real world leaders who do not cut deals with repulsive elements (e.g. Churchill and Stalin, Nixon and Mao, Begin and Sadat) tend not to accomplish all that much.

Selasse wasn't faced with a choice between making Ethiopia Switzerland or making it Facist Italy; he was faced with having to navigate between an illiberal decentralized feudal state and an illiberal centralized Marxist state.

Leaders do not use repression because they are evil, but because it "works". Selassie was neither a mythic individual nor a particularly heinous leader; he was a monarch who navigated many of the most treacherous waters of the 20th century with mostly positive results.

2. Not worth googling, if you're wondering unless you like train wrecks. I took one for the team here.

Would the virtue be in getting an erection, or in not getting an erection?

That’s an externality I’d like to keep as external as possible.

Gross Domestic Product. Really Gross.


To: Donald Tusk

From: Those of Us Occupying that Special Place in Hell.

Date: 8 February 2019


Here's your PR. Enjoy.

#2 "“Freedom is at the root of both my opposition to Brexit ...."

and yet Freedom is at the root of Brexit . I bet all her other 'logic' works the same way.

The freedom to not export to Europe. The freedom to not travel to Europe. The Freedom to pay tariffs on imports from Europe. The freedom to not do business in Europe. The freedom to move yoiur business out of the UK to do business in Europe. The freedom to wait for clearing customs to/from Europe.

Brexit makes as much sense as Texas leaving the US and going back to the pesos. And negotiating a great trade deal with Mexico without Trump messing things up.

For Americans, the EU is always couched in terms of your own internal disputes - here it's an example of why the north and coasts are justified in trying to exert power and dominance over the south and interior.

And usually little understood - comment on pesos would imply some kind of currency union in the Euro between Britain and the continent. Yet not only is this not the case, almost no one believes it would have been a good idea if it were the case.

"2. Cambridge economist uses her (naked) body to fight Brexit."

So, if you strip naked in front of a crowd, people will take you seriously?

2. Nudity is the last refuge of the uncreative...

#2) She's clearly angling for MR's upcoming "Inspiring Women in Economics" series

#2. This female economist has apparently done naked publicity events several times before.

Can we expect a Tyler Cowen fully nude presentation of his latest book? New form of economic debate?

5: Harvard's Ec10 used to have enrollments of a thousand or more. Now the enrollments are about half that.

Has the course really fallen in popularity, or are more students placing out of it or skipping it?

I don't usually go in for this line of commentary, but: had a man gave a lecture nude, I wonder would people take him even less seriously than this woman? In other words, is nudity a more acceptable protest/consciousness-raising act for a woman than a man?

our guess is had a man tried to give that lecture nude
he would have
been quickly stopped by the biasresponse unit/police


#2 People usually do such stunts to prevent getting fired. It's like doing a coming out about being LGBT, feminist or jewish - nobody will lay you off after such an anouncement. The risk of a lawsuit regarding discrimination is too high.

She is by general accounts a fairly competent economic historian who's apparently been doing this sort of thing in one form or another (a non-clothed form) for years...

Just something they do over there?

1: I had trouble orienting myself in this article, when Tyler said potato chips I thought he meant one thing, then the article seemed to wander a bit in its subject and nomenclature and I realized it was from the Guardian where "chips" means "fries" so I needed to adjust my mental vocabulary and then I realized that the article is in fact using American vocabulary.

And its subject was indeed wandering because it is indeed talking about eating chips as well as eating fries. So I was trying to mentally translate between British and American vocabulary and then un-translate while the subject matter kept skipping around.

And then the article talks about Japanese one-handed chips, but also about the chip Grabber and the Frork and I'm thinking what's the point, Japanese have been using such devices for years, they're called chopsticks.

And I'm still confused by what "one handed" means, who uses two hands to eat french fries or potato chips? Unless you're walking while eating, then you need one hand to hold them and one to eat with. But I've read that the Japanese almost never eat and walk at the same time. But the article is about everywhere, not just Japan. But the "drinkable" (not a very good word to use) chips are from Japan.

Yeah it's just a goofy throw-away article, but I was continually put off-balance by its word choice and jumbling together of various topics and nations.

#2 Nudity probably raises awareness. It probably doesn't raise credibility.

I don't think her viewpoint on Brexit needs awareness.

The correct interpretation of "I am going naked to raise awareness of X," is: "I am going naked to raise awareness of me." Every single time.

Take one for the team, Tyler and sleep with that woman. Maybe then she'll stop taking her clothes off.

I wonder if Tyler found your comment more rude than asking how much he makes?

#2#: If I (a male) send around naked pics of my dick I would be accused of harassment or worse and might probably be accused of criminal behavior...I don't understand why this is different for women

It’s not complicated Andy....I’d rather check out her rack than your junk

also no offense to you, Andy, but women's bodies are a work of art, although I'm sure your endowment is spectacular

But she's not sending naked pics of her junk, she's giving a lecture where she warns attendees that she won't be wearing clothes. You could do the same if you liked.

#3. I've been following Paul's channel for a while now, but sometimes his videos come across as a bit dry and unfocused. However, there's just not a lot of Youtube channels devoted to linguistics so what can you do. Another good channel with a bit more polish is NativLang.

If you want a more in-depth history and explanation I suggest the History of English Podcast, which wonderfully explains language evolution all the way from Proto-Indo European up to modern English, and has a solid 4 or 5 episodes devoted to Norse influence through the Danelaw. So much history, etymology, and grammar packed into a single well-delivered package.

Surprise video links are bad.


So, let me get this straight. A professor at one of the most exclusive places on Earth gets naked on stage to demonstrate she is in favor of the unrestricted movement of people.

Can I pitch a tent on the lawn at the site of her employer? Shower in their restroom? Use the loo? Workout in the gym? Can I just drop in on a lecture? Can I just use an empty classroom to give a lecture of my choice? Can I excercise my right to green movement and freedom of speech to join her at the podium and we can do a lecture call and response a la Mississippi Delta?


My comment below was meant to be a reply here... If I could delete/edit that and copy/paste that here, I would.

It's logically consistent to argue against exclusive birthright membership of a nation state and not argue against the exclusivity of private property or the exclusivity of a university. I agree with your general opposition to open borders, but I don't agree with your accusation of hypocrisy.

Next, while she is advocating for open borders, this thread is really about the novelty of an academic using her naked body to make political points, not about the actual points she is making which aren't new at all.

I disagree about the logical consistency you describe, but I will let it go.

Regarding the real issue of discussion, the nakedness is just an attention getter.


Oh, logical consistency, what do you demand? Because we eat cows we should eat groundhogs too? Because chickens, seagulls? Because haircuts, decapitation? Because circumcision, ..

Oh, logical consistency, what brave world do you bring!

Hi mouse. You know I am not picking on you anymore.

Just giving you something to think about, that maybe not everything we do is on a linear scale from one thing to another.

Thank you. I always appreciate your feedback.

fiscal liberty? from a social worker?

On logical error, "He would like her to be hungry but now she’s mad, only she’s not allowed to be mad, just hungry, and she doesn’t know if it’s the situation she hates or herself." - Haskell

sounds like your cat my be depressed or have anorexia--according to experts in the UK. But you can get help here:


Nice please see this post too

#1More proof of the malaise of abundance.

I just wanted to note that the one-hand-chips aren't "smashed" or "drinkable". They're just shaped like small fries, and put in a pack which lets you drop them directly into your mouth.

Comments for this post are closed