Octavo Dia

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Homophobia

Be very afraid of the gay gene... if you're gay. It seems to me that, if it turns out that homosexuality has a genetic cause, rather than celebrating homosexuality as natural, people will begin aborting it. People already abort because their child will be handicapped, or mentally retarded, or a girl--what would stop them from aborting if their child was gay? Particularly as genetic testing becomes routine, a gay check, and I'm sure the people who cared could find doctors to do it, would begin reducing the number of homosexuals. And since people would feel it was justified, "After all, I don't want my child to be discriminated against," the gay gene would literally be the death of homosexuality.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Thermodynamics

So I was reading a letter to the editor which argued that tidal turbines are the way to go for green energy, because we'll have them as a source of power as long as we have gravity. That made me wonder how the heck gravity gets around the first law of thermodynamics. We're experiencing a massive amount of energy use in the form of tides. Where is that energy coming from?

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

It's my money!

From the perspective of international trade, having a universal currency, such as gold, was profoundly helpful, because it eliminated all currency risk. However, everyone wants to have their own currency. Partly for the seinorage benefits, but also for the purposes of national pride. Having your country's heroes on its bills is part and parcel of independence (It was a big issue with the introduction of the Euro.) So, to encourage dollarization, we need to create a new dollar. Several new dollars in fact. The back of the bill would remain the same, but the front of the bill would incorporate whatever features the newly dollarizing economy desired. It would be a national currency, but still a dollar, like the rebranding of products for different economies. If, for example, Tibet became independent, we could print a batch with various lamas on it that would serve as the Tibetan currency, but would still be dollars and tradable as such.

Monday, September 10, 2007

Innovation in the Ranks

In my dream world, I would have every employee receive a hundred bucks. Not in pay, but as discretionary budget for improvements in the plant. Just about everyone has a hundred bucks worth of improvements that they could make, and if someone has a really good idea, he could recruit other people to contribute to it.

It would take some level of management, so they're not working at cross-purposes or creating trap doors or something, but having $100 budgeted for employee innovation would create a fabulous amount of improvement.