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By gzt (Mon Jun 21, 2010 at 02:21:12 PM EST) gzt, wasting time (all tags)
an article on the economics of children: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704289504575313201221533826.html debunks anti-child propaganda.


I've been reading stuff from badass of the week. The style gets a bit tiresome at times. He does pick good people to write about, however. Like http://www.badassoftheweek.com/cincinnatus.html and http://www.badassoftheweek.com/rama.html

Visited parents for the weekend. Their new house is pretty big. I'm not sure why they need that much house, but they did need a little more than they had. I mean, it's big enough that we could move in if there were some sort of terrible apocalypse where we had to go back to using swords or something (things would have to be that bad for us to move in with the parents, though they don't have any swords, and how would we get there if things got that bad, anyway). It has a slightly-inconvenient pool table. There's a light hanging from the ceiling for it, but if you place the table in a spot where the light is centered over the table, it doesn't really work for playing pool. Moving the table so you can play pool makes the light look out of place. Intractable. According to the scale there, I started the weekend at like 258# and left at around 253#. Part of that is fluctuation due to timing of food intake and weighing, crap like that.

A question: Would you rather be good-looking or intelligent.
An answer: This sort of question is foolish. However, since I am both, I would say that I have gotten the most mileage out of being intelligent and typically do not do what I could to leverage my looks. In short, I dress like a slob and don't care what my hair looks like.

I read some Mare Nostrum stuff. We really need to play with the full expansion. It seems we, as a group, are enjoying vanilla Mare Nostrum and getting a lot more out of it than some other gaming groups have, though, in retrospect, Greece and Carthage almost never win, so it really is quite unbalanced. I have won with Greece and Carthage. I think Rome is the only one I have not won with, but I have only played Rome a couple times. I think the time I won with Greece I did not do the whole "tax strategy" thing. As for the expansion thing: we've had it for ages, but have not gotten around to playing with it. Given the rave reviews it gets, we must do it. However, it adds layers of complexity to the game.

I'm mostly wasting time here.

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Fooey on Mare Nostrum, try Here I Stand by georgeha (2.00 / 0) #1 Mon Jun 21, 2010 at 02:31:00 PM EST
If you can find a better many hour long game on the Reformation, play it.

I tried it Saturday, I was the Popes. After four hours of battling Heretics, Ottomans and the French, I left. The game went on another 3 1/2 hours.


interesting by gzt (2.00 / 0) #2 Mon Jun 21, 2010 at 02:36:34 PM EST
I don't think we're interested in something lasting more than 3 hours, though.

[ Parent ]
But you can burn Protestants at the stake! by georgeha (2.00 / 0) #3 Mon Jun 21, 2010 at 02:40:41 PM EST
Calvin and Luther have too high a debating rank to make it likely for them, but Tyndale? Against Eck, he's toast.


[ Parent ]
that does sound fun by gzt (2.00 / 0) #6 Mon Jun 21, 2010 at 02:57:50 PM EST
But I really don't like long, complex games. I like the complexity to be in the gameplay and strategy, not the mechanism and rules. That's one reason I have some trepidation about the MN expansion: another layer of complexity.

[ Parent ]
What a twerp Bryan Caplan is by TheophileEscargot (4.00 / 1) #4 Mon Jun 21, 2010 at 02:49:32 PM EST
He's the guy who wrote The Myth of the Rational Voter about how democracy is stupid and economists/markets should run everything.

With that article though, the methodology he likes is in conflict with his conservative family-is-good ideology. So, he marshals up a bunch of maybe-perhaps-possibly handwavey arguments and decides that that outweighs the socioeconomic statistics evidence. Phew, nearly had to accept an unpalatable conclusion there. Don't worry though, statistical evidence remains irrefutable as long as it leads to a conclusion he wants.

Meanwhile, there was an interesting study of a natural experiment in Italy, where people whose future pensions were reduced suddenly started having more children, suggesting they saw their childen as a financial help in old age. That backs up other evidence that financial implications have a big impact on whether people have children, like the French rise in fertility when they introduced subsidies for parents. However, as a right-winger, don't expect Caplan to look too hard at evidence involving government action.
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It is unlikely that the good of a snail should reside in its shell: so is it likely that the good of a man should?

I hate the myth of the rational voter by gzt (2.00 / 0) #5 Mon Jun 21, 2010 at 02:54:10 PM EST
I found the article interesting despite my distaste for his methodology - one of my least favorite behind pop-evolutionary-psychology - and politics - one of my least favorite that won't get one called a Nazi or Fascist.

[ Parent ]
I'm surprised there isn't more friction by TheophileEscargot (2.00 / 0) #7 Mon Jun 21, 2010 at 02:59:33 PM EST
Between the right-wing Evolutionary Psychology crowd and the right-wing Evangelical Protestant crowd. You'd think they'd be enemies over evolution at least, but they seem to coexist quite happily in the various right-wing webzines and forums at least.
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It is unlikely that the good of a snail should reside in its shell: so is it likely that the good of a man should?
[ Parent ]
I'm surprised, too. by gzt (2.00 / 0) #8 Mon Jun 21, 2010 at 03:01:53 PM EST
Because they really ought, by all reckonings, to vigorously hate each other.

[ Parent ]
I think by garlic (2.00 / 0) #9 Mon Jun 21, 2010 at 03:57:51 PM EST
they expect to secretly control the other side.


[ Parent ]
theory by Merekat (2.00 / 0) #11 Mon Jun 21, 2010 at 04:09:34 PM EST
It is only the liberal/left who shoot at each other first. Once this lot dispose of the 'real' enemy, they'd turn on each other like a shot. 

[ Parent ]
There is friction, but it's usually kept private by chuckles (2.00 / 0) #13 Mon Jun 21, 2010 at 05:07:49 PM EST
or at least on technically public but obscure fora.

"The one absolutely certain way of bringing this nation to ruin [...] would be to permit it to become a tangle of squabbling nationalities"
[ Parent ]
The only thing by technician (2.00 / 0) #18 Mon Jun 21, 2010 at 06:01:11 PM EST
that actually worries me about being childless is the fact that I will turn my elder care over to robots or state hired nurses.

I'm praying for robots.

[ Parent ]
You'll be getting state hired nurses. by chuckles (4.00 / 1) #20 Mon Jun 21, 2010 at 11:15:29 PM EST

Advances in automation are dependent on labor being expensive. Heron's steam engine never took off because slaves were so plentiful. The Confederates couldn't match the industrialized Yankees because slaves were so plentiful.

Due to unlimited Third World immigration into the US, it doesn't make economic sense to invest in labor-saving devices. You can count on being cared for in your "golden years" by people from Latin America, not fancy-ass robots.

I am confident you will get the level of care you deserve.



"The one absolutely certain way of bringing this nation to ruin [...] would be to permit it to become a tangle of squabbling nationalities"
[ Parent ]
Unless he moves to Japan (nt) by ucblockhead (2.00 / 0) #21 Tue Jun 22, 2010 at 12:06:25 PM EST

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[ucblockhead is] useless and subhuman
[ Parent ]
you have a nephew(s) by StackyMcRacky (4.00 / 1) #23 Tue Jun 22, 2010 at 02:07:10 PM EST
start working them now.

[ Parent ]
if the mare nostrum stuff by garlic (2.00 / 0) #10 Mon Jun 21, 2010 at 04:00:43 PM EST
was on boardgamegeek, it may be worth taking with a grain of salt -- it caters to a very particular sort of gamer who is more focussed on winning than having fun. 


this is somewhat true by gzt (2.00 / 0) #12 Mon Jun 21, 2010 at 04:57:11 PM EST
but the timbre of their comments indicates, to me, that it seems more fun, too. And, though I am not all about winning, a game is more fun if everybody has a good shot at it.

[ Parent ]
i really like boardgamegeek by garlic (2.00 / 0) #17 Mon Jun 21, 2010 at 05:51:38 PM EST
but if I get too involved in reading a particular games forum (say game of thrones) it'll convince me the game is terrible or unbalanced, but whenever I play with my buddies we all have fun and it turns out fine. They're also prejudiced against most any sort of random element in games, and are the reason that the dice decks exist for settler's of catan (because actual dice rolling takes a lot of rolls to make a normal distribution).


[ Parent ]
this is true by gzt (2.00 / 0) #22 Tue Jun 22, 2010 at 12:27:10 PM EST
I think that's silly. But if you play 20 games and Greece wins only once while Egypt wins 7 times, yeah, the game is unbalanced and should be altered.

[ Parent ]
I read JET by ammoniacal (2.00 / 0) #14 Mon Jun 21, 2010 at 05:22:09 PM EST
so I know you don't have that many hair options available. Just shave it off. Chicks dig that.

"To this day that was the most bullshit caesar salad I have every experienced..." - triggerfinger

Doing research by chuckles (2.00 / 0) #15 Mon Jun 21, 2010 at 05:31:26 PM EST
so you can pickup that babymama at the bus stop?

"The one absolutely certain way of bringing this nation to ruin [...] would be to permit it to become a tangle of squabbling nationalities"
[ Parent ]
Dude, that was yesterday. by ammoniacal (2.00 / 0) #16 Mon Jun 21, 2010 at 05:35:02 PM EST
Check your CMOS battery for strength.

"To this day that was the most bullshit caesar salad I have every experienced..." - triggerfinger

[ Parent ]
Another question: by ambrosen (2.00 / 0) #19 Mon Jun 21, 2010 at 07:10:38 PM EST
Healthy mind or healthy body?

Well, in my experience of lacking both at different times, I've found that if you're missing one, you're going to be short on the other in pretty short order. The question is also meaningless.

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