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Advertising exemption Mon, Dec 21, 2020
I feel I should be exempt from advertising for products and services of which I'm already a customer.  I should be able to skip commercials for my cell service provider, my cable provider, etc.  Seeing more ads won't make me more of a customer. 

I also think I should be exempt if there's essentially no way for me to be a customer.  I recently saw a commercial for a fast food place that's not in my area.  I'm used to seeing commercials from the nearby metro area which don't exactly apply to me, but there's absolutely no way I'm driving 200 miles for some greasy chicken. #business

Seized drug prices Thu, Dec 17, 2020
It's more than a little misleading when law enforcement and reporters say things like "[x value] of drugs was seized" in a sting operation or whatnot.  That's the value of the drugs if they were sold.  But since they're seized, they'll likely be destroyed, and so they're worth nothing.  Actually, since it took personnel and resources to seize the drugs, they're really worth less than nothing.  That's a net negative.  If the law got out of the way, those drugs could be sold for a profit, which would then stimulate the economy instead of being a drain on it. #money

Revenge bedtime procrastination Wed, Dec 02, 2020
From 52 things I learned in 2020:
報復性熬夜 is a Chinese term that roughly means 'Revenge bedtime procrastination' -- when "people who don't have much control over their daytime life refuse to sleep early in order to regain some sense of freedom during late night hours". [Lu-Hai Liang]
Oh, I do that. #psychology

Voter turnout Wed, Dec 02, 2020
I remember thinking (and maybe saying) this after Trump got elected in 2016, but it's even more true now:  The one good thing Trump has done is to increase people's interest in politics, both local and national, and for both political parties.  This can be clearly seen in voter turnout percentages, which have been in the 50s and low 60s for the past hundred years or so.  The 2020 election saw a 66-72% eligible voter turnout, which is the highest its been since the 1800s.  Say what you want about him and his presidency, but a healthy functioning representative democracy requires the interest and involvement of the voting populace.  Mission accomplished. #politics

Virus scare Tue, Nov 10, 2020
I really enjoy (subtext: sarcasm) how, during the time of coronavirus, every little ailment you get, from a runny nose to sinus congestion to a cough to a fever, could potentially be serious.  I sort of miss the good old days when people got sick and continued on with their normal lives. #health

Coronavirus names Tue, Nov 10, 2020
I meant to write this like 7 months ago, but oh well:  I like how people talk and write about the coronavirus with superfluous names, as if we didn't know what they were talking about.  "The novel coronavirus, also known as SARS-CoV-2, which causes the disease COVID-19..."  Like, yeah we get it.  The virus. #health

Fauci accused of politics Mon, Nov 09, 2020
Dr. Anthony Fauci was accused of being political right before the recent election
When asked about the approaches of the two presidential candidates, Dr Fauci said Mr Biden was "taking it seriously from a public health perspective", while Mr Trump was "looking at it from a different perspective... the economy and reopening the country".
That's probably the least political statement ever, and he could've easily and rightfully snuck a well-informed insult right in the second part of that statement, but he didn't.  The statement is not political.  It's literal reality. #politics

Half a bridge Thu, Oct 29, 2020
I like this analogy from a Freakonomics episode about developing a Covid-19 vaccine
Any biotech company ... has to manage their finances properly. 

Without money, they can't conduct clinical trials. They can't do research. And so, all the progress that we see will stop if they run out of money. And the asset that they worked so hard to develop actually gets destroyed. 

It's like building half a bridge. A half a bridge is not half as good as a full bridge.
The primary purpose of a bridge is to link two pieces of land across a body of water or a valley.  A bridge that's 50% complete, or 90% or 99%, while it may provide other uses, doesn't accomplish it's primary function. #business

Clean desk Thu, Oct 29, 2020
One of my favorite coworker interactions was when my next-cube neighbor was defending his messy desk by trying to quote Einstein:  "Empty desk, empty mind."  This particular person is the last person who should be quoting (or misquoting) Einstein, and also the last person who should be claiming to not have an empty head.  So when I said to him, "I have a clean desk; what are you trying to say?", the look on his empty-headed face was priceless. #business

Political identification Tue, Oct 27, 2020
There's a house in my neighborhood we refer to as "the Trump House".  There's been some sort of Trump-branded paraphernalia on or around their house since before the 2016 election.  In the months leading up to the 2020 election, the Trump House has added a little sign by the mailbox, several signs along the curb, two banners on either side of their front door, and a gigantic flag flapping majestically in the breeze directly below the American flag.  It's a bit over-the-top. 

Political signs aren't too uncommon, especially around election season.  But this president is the first I can remember whose followers are active advertisers even in the off-season.  And what I find especially weird about this is that a lot of people seem to have their identity centered on being a Trump-supporter.  Like that's the first thing they would answer if asked to "tell me a little about yourself".  I just find it odd that people are building their sense of self around a political candidate, of all things.  Some people are into sports ("die-hard Jets fan").  Some people are into activities (hiking, biking, etc.).  But those qualities are "some of" not "all of" a person. 

I like whiskey.  I like it quite a bit.  Do I like it enough to hoist a flag?  Put a poster on my lawn?  A bumper sticker on my car?  No.  Part of it is that I have better taste than that [:-)].  But the other, more important thing is that my identity is wrapped up in a handful of things I enjoy and am interested in or passionate about. And politics isn't even in the top 50 for me. #politics

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