Posts that the internet missed – part 2

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In the prior post I brought back some of 2018’s posts from this blog that should have had more internet traction. In case you missed them, here are a few more:

Government budgets are moral documents

It looks like a real U.S. budget from the dysfunctional Congress will not be a Paul Ryan legacy. He should have read this post from March on why every budgetary decision the Congress makes has a moral dimension to it, but likely in ways they do not understand.

The casualties of culture

Many Americans continue to see people one step down the socioeconomic ladder from themselves as freeloaders whom their own hard work is supporting through their taxes. I propose instead that we start using this term, the casualties of culture, to understand that, either “by the grace of God,” or perhaps better understood by simple “probabilistic randomness,” most of us have been damned lucky by comparison.

North Korea and Game Theory

In this March post I looked at the dangerous game of “nuclear chicken” that we continue to play with North Korea. There is some interesting math here, and it is not too hard to grasp. As a movie computer once asked, “Do you want to play a game?”

Hearing, seeing, and choosing in logarithms

In April I geeked out with a two-part post about how, while we think our counting system based on ten fingers is “the way God intended it,” nature really “counts” using that nasty concept you learned somewhere in high school, and then promptly forgot, called logarithms.

Iowa, abortion and ethical nuance

Part of my formal education is in the area of classical ethics, and although I am not Catholic, I learned a lot from some impressive “uppity” nuns in Cincinnati some twenty-five years ago. They were far better, in my view, at parsing out the “ethical nuance” of the messy abortion issue than were their ham-handed male counterparts. I have tried to articulate their position in this post, as I think it needs to be on the table.

Las Vegas, internet advertising and collective delusions

As we finally learn the details of how Russia used social media to change the results of the 2016 U.S. presidential election, I recommend this June post about “collective delusion,” especially when it comes to our own susceptibility to internet advertising and social influence. The follow-up series of posts get a bit wonkish on how the concept of Markov Chains can be used to explain how, among other things, Reagan anti-Russia Christian Republicans had their minds changed, one at a time, to unquestioningly support a sybaritic tool of Vladimir Putin as president of the United States.

Have a great New Year!

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