23 Aug 2011

Anything but water

  • Days of the Week (via XKCD) is pretty cool.

  • Interesting paper [PDF]: "we show that fewer agents contribute to the public good when their action set allows for taking. As a result, the provision level of the public good is reduced. Extending the action set to the take domain thereby allows us to provide a new interpretation of giving in (linear) public good games: giving positive amounts in a standard public good game may just reflect a desire to avoid the most selfish option, rather than a ‘warm glow’ from giving" (i.e., people give less when they are allowed to take; this means that "giving" research may over-estimate people's desire to help others).

  • An interesting comparison of weight energy use: whales vs. Americans.

  • No government = strong growth in Belgium. Maybe Americans should shut down Washington DC?

  • Speaking of which, Penn Jillette (of Penn and Teller) says:
    I don't believe the majority always knows what's best for everyone. The fact that the majority thinks they have a way to get something good does not give them the right to use force on the minority that don't want to pay for it. If you have to use a gun, I don't believe you really know jack. Democracy without respect for individual rights sucks.
    Read the whole thing.

  • The Economist investigates: "China’s oil trade with Africa is dominated by an opaque syndicate. Ordinary Africans appear to do badly out of its hugely lucrative deals."
H/Ts to LK and TV

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