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ZuG

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Quick Note [26 Nov 2008|02:32pm]
Economic theory this, economic theory that... why is there no effort to quantify which economic theories function best under which circumstances? Maybe this exists already, but I'm tired of endless arguing about what this country needs economically.. why isn't there a "historical economics" field?

Google turns up the "Historical School of Economics", which is sort of what i'm getting at, but it's another school of thought, not the academic study of economic successes and failures. Does this exist?
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Book [03 Mar 2008|02:29pm]
I know, it's been an while since I've posted, but i'm hoping for some advice.

I have been wanting to read less "fluff" books more meaningful books. I would like some recommendations of books from you all. Not necessarily the classics, though classics are fine, but books that were very meaningful to you or helped you see something in a different way or think about the world a little bit differently.

I'm trying to expand my mind.
12 comments|post comment

Is it already stale? [18 Sep 2007|11:31am]
Although few would argue that I've accomplished nothing in the 15 months since returning from South America, I can't help but feel the things I've been pursuing are, if not meaningless, at minimum not meaningful enough.

I have never felt that merely living one's life while largely ignoring the concerns of others is a healthy way to live. Reading Ishamael has only solidified my thoughts that working a reasonably well-paid corporate job should only be viewed as a means to an end, to be discarded as soon as a more intellectually profitable venture comes along. My conversations with Jen have convinced me that such occupations *are* one there, and that if one merely looks hard enough, a person can find more meaningful fufillment than Taker/corporate/consumer culture.

So, yes, I've been earning money, but I haven't been fufilling any sort of useful goal. My helpdesk job obstenibly helps disadvantaged school-children by helping schools fufill the special education ports of NCLB, but in reality, the best I achieve in a given day is to help a hapless teacher wander the myriad mazes of beaucracy expressed as software.

As I surf the internet in the moments between activity at my job, I have oft run across articles about people who are doing things that are fascinating have have amazing potential. Jane McGonigal's ground-breaking work in Alternative Reality Games resulted in a spate of research regarding ARG's, but I realized that this work would be ultimately unfufilling for me. Anything that can help bring Americans out of their intellectual apathy is grand, but there are far larger concerns than the slow implosion of our country.

The OLPC project is another with tremendous potential. But it already has a massive following, and I can't help but think such a noble project is destined to fail because the creators have not sufficiently studied the ways of corruption and I fear that these laptops will quickly be taken from children (or never put into their hands in the first place) and end up in the black market, grey market, or in the hands of rich first-worlders (there is already a significant clamor to make these machines available to first-world kids).

My latest interest is the work of Amy Smith. She is more on the right track than anyone else (watch her explain her work and results here). But, god, I'd be setting myself up to study applied physics, my most hated science. I dragged my way through my mandatory year of physics classes by skipping class entirely and forcing myself to learn it from the book (anything was better than listening to my godawful prof). I don't know if I could handle another 4+ years of physics. But oh, the things I could do with it.

I don't know.
7 comments|post comment

About, and for, Perkins [26 Jul 2007|12:01pm]
[ mood | tired ]

[07/26/2007 11:51] zug is here: I don't know. Eric only gets what he wants to get
[07/26/2007 11:51] zug is here: you're trying to feed him information he isn't really interested in hearing, as much as he says (and maybe even thinks) he is
[07/26/2007 11:51] eldritch74: which i also pointed out to him
[07/26/2007 11:51] eldritch74: told him he was being solipsistic
[07/26/2007 11:55] eldritch74: because he only hears what he wants to hear and refutes what he does not.
[07/26/2007 11:55] zug is here: I honestly, at this point, don't think he's going to change until there's a major upheaval in his life that forces him to take action
[07/26/2007 11:56] zug is here: i thought nae might be that upheaval... but he was too needy for her
[07/26/2007 11:56] eldritch74: heh
[07/26/2007 11:56] zug is here: he can't "just change"... he can't wrap his head around the 'just do it already' philosophy
[07/26/2007 11:56] eldritch74: i know
[07/26/2007 11:57] zug is here: in his head, changes are gargantuan beasts which must have every angle carefully considered before daring to act, lest you make a misstep
[07/26/2007 11:57] zug is here: instead of something you just do, then see how it works
[07/26/2007 11:57] eldritch74: right
[07/26/2007 11:57] eldritch74: i know this :P
[07/26/2007 11:57] zug is here: I know you do, but yet you keep giving him help/advice
[07/26/2007 11:57] eldritch74: he kept saying that last night
[07/26/2007 11:57] zug is here: when we both know it'll make zero difference
[07/26/2007 11:57] eldritch74: eh
[07/26/2007 11:58] zug is here: He'll hear it, and will thank you for it, and promptly forget all of it
[07/26/2007 11:58] eldritch74: sin duda.
[07/26/2007 11:58] eldritch74: but at least i can say i gave a whole-hearted effort.
[07/26/2007 11:59] zug is here: The only possible way you could get through to him is to somehow demonstrate through words that his idea of change itself is all wrong
[07/26/2007 11:59] zug is here: i've never been able to get that past him... saying "dude, just fucking do it" doesn't get through to him
[07/26/2007 11:59] zug is here: I don't know how else to put it
[07/26/2007 11:59] zug is here: Perhaps somebody could like him the "30 days" steve pavlina article that talks about making a life change for 30 days and evaluating it
[07/26/2007 12:00] zug is here: I'm not sure that anything can get through to him
[07/26/2007 12:00] zug is here: and if you handhold him through the process, he won't ever internalize that change is not difficult... he'll see you wrestling the gargantuan beast, without realizing there's no beast at all
[07/26/2007 12:00] eldritch74: probaly not

The article: http://www.stevepavlina.com/blog/2005/04/30-days-to-success/

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pride 2007 [02 Jul 2007|12:09pm]
See if you can spot Waldo*



http://cmsimg.lansingstatejournal.com/apps/pbcsi.dll/bilde?NewTbl=1&Avis=A3&Dato=20070630&Kategori=NEWS&Lopenr=706300801&Ref=PH&Item=3&MaxW=620&MaxH=500


Hint: I'm extra fabulous in a white feather boa!






*and by Waldo I mean me.
7 comments|post comment

first post? [29 Jun 2007|02:40pm]
[ mood | tired ]

How are all of you out there in LJ-land? Surely you've stopped reading my journal since I post so infrequently of late. Be assured that I'm still reading your journals, though, nearly daily.


Lots and lots going on in my life. The building renovation is going slowly but swimmingly. Jen and I have had lots of help from many unexpected-but-appreciated sources, so a large thank you to all of you that have helped. Stop by and see it sometime, ok?


Work is going well. I'm finding that the company I work for is probably better than most jobs I could find in a great many areas. There are some things that I cannot change that are frustrating, but there are a great many things I have been able to change for the better, and a great many that I will be changing for the better in the near future.

Those of you who know me know that I've been going through 3 years of doctor hell, trying to find an answer to the various medical problems i've been having. I've had two seperate doctors say Behcet's disease (Wikipedia has a great article)now, and so we're going with it. The latest/greatest treatment is not available in the US, so we're working on getting me medicine through Canada via the Orphan Drug protocols. I look forward to finding effective treatment.

8 comments|post comment

3com tech [03 May 2007|11:10am]
[ mood | frustrated ]

Anybody (crywolf, are you out there?) know of a decent 3com router tech? I have a pair of 3com 3036 routers that I can't get FTP working on for the life of me.

1 comment|post comment

Linux+ Exam [17 Mar 2007|05:45pm]
To my friends: Come join me at Crunchy's Monday night at 8:30pm to celebrate my passing (or lament my failing) of my linux plus certification exam. Call for details.
6 comments|post comment

Update [17 Mar 2007|05:42pm]
Things are going very well with the building purchase. We've gotten our preapproval and inspection completed, and now we're rate shopping and waiting for other inane details. I'm super excited.. for those of you in the know, I've been house shopping for at least 6 months now and things look like they are really truly finally going to happen.

The band starts rehersals in 2 weeks. I'm excited about the extra income opportunity, as well as having some fun in local bars. I've got two auditions tomorrow, and from there the band should be all set. I'm very excited.
2 comments|post comment

Whee test. [08 Mar 2007|06:19pm]

The Everything Test

There are many different types of tests on the internet today. Personality tests, purity tests, stereotype tests, political tests. But now, there is one test to rule them all.

Traditionally, online tests would ask certain questions about your musical tastes or clothing for a stereotype, your experiences for a purity test, or deep questions for a personality test.We're turning that upside down - all the questions affect all the results, and we've got some innovative results too! Enjoy :-)

Personality
You are more logical than emotional, more concerned about self than concerned about others, more atheist than religious, more dependent than loner, more lazy than workaholic, more rebel than traditional, more engineering mind than artistic mind, more cynical than idealist, more leader than follower, and more introverted than extroverted.

As for specific personality traits, you are adventurious (100%), intellectual (93%), adventurous (90%), romantic (86%).

Stereotypes
Punk Rock73%
Prep54%
White Trash45%
 
Life Experience
Sex63%
Substances54%
Travel29%

Politics
Your political views would best be described as Socialist, whom you agree with around 72% of the time.
  Socioeconomic
Your attitude toward life best associates you with Lower Middle Class. You make more than 0% of those who have taken this test, and 19% less than the U.S. average.

If your life was a movie, it would be rated R.
By the way, your hottness rank is 57%, hotter than 82% of other test takers.

TAKE THE TEST
brought to you by thatsurveysite





Oh yeah, I'm buying a house.
8 comments|post comment

For cat lovers and haters alike [26 Jan 2007|12:29pm]
Under the sea!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xLGzqauH1gk&eurl=
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grrr [24 Jan 2007|02:30pm]
You ever have a moment when you want to stab somebody in the face because they're being awful and defensive and you know perfectly well that there's no way you'll make them understand even though understanding would improve their happiness tenfold but that would require letting go of things they cling to like a child clings to a teddy bear?


Yeah, I feel that.
1 comment|post comment

Those of you who know me... [06 Jan 2007|06:42pm]
http://kevan.org/nohari?name=rettiger

Feel free to use anonymous as your name if you are uncomfortable with me seeing it.
12 comments|post comment

haha zomg [02 Jan 2007|01:49pm]
[ mood | amused ]

This lady totally called Jen a whore in the grocery store under her breath. We're not sure if it was 'cause she was wearing a short-ish skirt or the 'shocker' t-shirt.

Oh, rural Illnois, how we love you.

4 comments|post comment

I miss my friend [09 Dec 2006|02:31pm]
[12/09/2006 14:26:38] eldritch74: Yar.
[12/09/2006 14:27:12] eldritch74: non sequitur
[12/09/2006 14:29:35] eldritch74: when i look up at the sky, or a white wall, that's brightly lit up, but not actually too bright to look at can actually see the slight variaitions of light caused by the blood cells in my retinal tissue as it moves
[12/09/2006 14:29:48] zug is here: lol that is random
[12/09/2006 14:29:59] eldritch74: pretty much
[12/09/2006 14:30:08] zug is here: apropros of nothing =P
[12/09/2006 14:30:12] eldritch74: i've never heard of someone else seeing that
[12/09/2006 14:30:37] zug is here: says his name is william but i'm sure it's bill or billy or mac or buddy
[12/09/2006 14:30:38] eldritch74: i'm sure his name is bill or billy or mac or buddy
[12/09/2006 14:30:44] zug is here: =D
[12/09/2006 14:30:53] eldritch74: i hate you.
[12/09/2006 14:30:58] eldritch74: :D
5 comments|post comment

Oh god, I really do look like Tony Blair... [04 Dec 2006|08:23pm]
9 comments|post comment

Posting live from work. [30 Nov 2006|07:59pm]
Yay!






....not.
1 comment|post comment

Ah yes, that's me. Miss Innocent and Naive. [30 Nov 2006|03:43pm]








4 comments|post comment

Oh yeah [29 Nov 2006|10:42am]
I'm a vegetarian now.

I decided to try vegetarianism for 30 days. I'm on week 2, and so far no real meat cravings. I've been somewhat limited at restaurants but since I'm a pasta whore it hasn't been too bad even in those circumstances.

My trial ends right before Christmas. After 30 days i'm going to decide if it's something I want to continue or not.
19 comments|post comment

A Real Update [28 Nov 2006|12:39pm]
Two weekends ago, I finally got a small taste of Toronto. J and I stayed in a cute little B&B run by two gay boys near Church street. We did some wandering around, some sampling of different wares and types of shops, and had an overall good time. The one downside is that it was somewhat cold and seriously windy, so we were both fighting wind-burn the whole time. I'd love to go back again during the summer months.

----

I ran into a fascinating paper which compares media bias relative to congress by counting the number of times different congresspeople cite various think tanks/policy groups, and then counting how many times different media outlets cite the same policy groups. An ADA score is assigned to each congressperson and media outlet, depending on the relative amounts they cite different groups.

Some results are below (this is taken from page 38 of the paper, found here):



Now the congresspeople are about where you'd expect them, with Maxine Waters (D-CA) on the extreme liberal end of the scale and Tom Delay (R-TX) on the extreme conservative end. But take a look at the media outlets. There is a clear media bias toward the left here, with the Wall Street Journal the most liberal paper by far (it is important to note that this study only counted news stories and not editorials). Looks like the right-wingers may have been correct.

I really recommend reading the whole paper, because there are little gems throughout the whole thing (see the discussion of mean vs median and what it means for gerrymandering on page 26, for example).

----

Friday I am joining J and who knows who else for a Drag show at LCC, to be followed by a crazy hot tub party at Ash and Allie's house. But, I gotta get through finals first.

Blech.
7 comments|post comment

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