Mike the Mad Biologist

Archives for April, 2007

I’ve invented a new unit of time, the Samuelson Unit, which is the length of time required for the Social Security system to become ‘bankrupt.’ Oddly enough, Social Security is always DOOMED roughly 34 years from the time of the estimate. In other words, Social Security is doing fine, and will continue to be solvent.…

Defining a New Time Unit: the Samuelson

Named after economist Robert Samuelson, who, along with the Concord Coalition, is fighting the Glorious War on Social Security. It’s inspired by the Friedman Unit, named after NY Times columnist Thomas Friedman, who predicted for several years running that the “next six months” will be critical in Iraq. So what’s a Samuelson Unit?

…stoopid media tricks to ensue. Just thought I would direct your attention to this post.

Pandemic Flu Preparedness in Boston

Tonight, at 6:30pm, at the Boston Public Library, there’s a meeting “Preparing Boston Residents for Pandemic Flu.” I’m going, but with a great deal of pessimism.

ScienceBlogling Mike Dunford has an interesting post asking whether we should save an endemic Hawaiian plant, the williwilli. It’s a good post, but I have two comments, one silly and one serious. The silly comment is that how could anyone let a plant named the williwilli become extinct? It’s so damn cute (and is the…

It’s Not Like the Suffragists At All

Yesterday, PZ and Amanda both argued that a model for the acceptance of atheists should be the suffragist movement. I think that’s the wrong model: the appropriate model is the mainstreaming of Jews into American society.

Some Sunday Links

Here’s some links for you. Merry Spring!

How Do You Oppose Meals-on-Wheels?

Remember Conservative Ideologues: You drink his blood after you molest him. It’s more fun that way* I would like to think certain things transcend political, religious, and ideological divides. One might think that Meals-on-Wheels, a program that relies heavily on donations, discounts, and volunteers to bring meals to elderly shut-ins would be liked by all.…

Framing Social Security

Hopefully, talking about Social Security will be marginally less inflamatory than evolution or global warming, and it illustrates many of the points made in various discussions. First, though, I want to clear the deck about some misconceptions about Social Security (I have a lot of the links here and here, so I won’t repeat them…

‘E. coli conservatives’ is Rick Perlstein‘s phrase, not mine. After all, the Mad Biologist is quite partial to E. coli; I suppose that makes me an E. coli liberal. Most E. coli, including those isolated from retail meats, are not harmful, so I’ve always thought the bug gets a bad rap. Only a minority of…