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Marc's Musings

A circle has 360 degrees because the Egyptians miscounted the number of days in a year.

Imagine how fun math would be if there were 365.25636 degrees in a circle.

Popular support for Bernie's Medicare-for-All program is being bolstered by a number of studies that suggest it would be cheaper than private insurance because the government can do it better and cheaper than the private sector.

Listed below are all of the things the government does better and cheaper than the private sector:

The Free Stuff Sweepstakes has lost all entertainment value as it has devolved from a bunch of rich people promising to give you all of the other rich people's money to a bunch of rich people accusing the other rich people of not being good stewards of other rich people's money.

At this point, I'm wondering what was so bad about monarchies.

The Harvey Weinstein trial is novel because it is based on the testimony of witnesses who had a subsequent relationship with the accused.

Prosecutors declining to try rape cases where a legitimate relationship is present is like refusing to try a shoplifting case because the accused had actually paid for something from the store.

Illinois wants to become the third state to criminalize pumping your own gas (OR, NJ).

"Equality" is among the reasons listed for the change; low-income people cannot afford gasoline pumped by stations with attendants and are forced to pump their own gas. Under the proposed bill, low income people would be forced to buy gas they cannot afford so they can be equal.

Stop voting, people. It only makes things worse.

Glutamate is an amino acid and neurotransmitter that has been monitored in action for the first time.

A well-known salt of glutamate is monosodium glutamate (MSG). It breaks down into sodium and glutamate ions during digestion.

MSG attained urban legend status after a letter submitted to the New England Journal of Medicine ascribed various symptoms to MSG and was published as "Chinese Restaurant Syndrome". 

With little fanfare and less justification, Trump resurrected the USAF Space Command last year.

Zero originality points for the logo design and a ten point penalty for the nerd pandering.

"The world’s richest 2,153 people controlled more money than the poorest 4.6 billion combined"

Capitalism may provide more upward mobility than other systems, but that doesn't mean we should avert our eyes from the inevitable imbalances.  

Anyone who has played Monopoly or real-time strategy games knows that eventually the power players control the board.

Someone told me “I watch all of the news channels to make sure I get all of the news.”

If you are getting your news from television (or their online appendages), you're not getting news, but ‘news-like product’ to make you believe whatever one of the six corporations who control the major news outlets want you to believe.

The news is dead. Long live the narrative.

 

Hollywood spent $175M on a film that was so bad it could only be improved by adding a scene of a man extracting bagpipes from a dragon's nether regions, and even that strategic maneuver only netted $30M opening weekend and likely not much more.

It's a far cry from the days of Home Alone, hauling $162M on a $15M budget or Dirty Dancing grabbing $62M on a $10M budget.

Every year, Hollywood has to relearn that money, technology, and potty humor does not a good movie make.

No fewer than 119 billionaires and their private jets converge on Davos, Switzerland next week for the World Economic Forum where they will bandy topics such as “Balancing Domestic and Global Inequality” and “Breaking Legal Barriers to Equality.”

It's just as well they're rich, otherwise they could not afford the $43 hot dogs.

How will Iowans award their delegates for the Democratic National Convention in Milwaukee?

By spending the evening sitting in school gymnasium bleachers being – not counted – estimated. Then, each time a candidate is eliminated, they have to move around to indicate their preferences for the remaining candidates.

Personally, I think Red Rover would be more effective.

Among the curiosities revealed by the following chart, it illuminates the ignorance of the populace with regard to the military.

How can the military be more trustworthy than the government that controls it?

Twenty months after the Prince of Wales paid for an eight figure wedding, Harry and Meghan are abdicating their titles and scarpering to Canada.

And that's the last time you'll see a British Royal marry an American!

People are upset that Jeff Bezos pledged only $1M AU to the Australian wildfire crisis. The reality is that Jeff Bezos pledged zero dollars.

"Amazon is donating 1 million AU dollars in needed provisions and services. Find more about it and learn how customers can help as well." - Instagram Post by Bezos

Idjits.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has linked Iran to 9/11 and this - of course - has spawned a bunch of Twin Towers and other memes about Iran's involvement in 9/11. After perusing my autographed copy of The 9/11 Report, I can relay the following:

"We have found no evidence that Iran or Hezbollah was aware of the planning for what later became the 9/11 attack." — 9/11 Report, p.258

How many other lies are they telling to make the public support aggressive actions toward Iran?

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