May 22nd, 2008 |
Business, Marketing and Advertising
Here is Holiday Inn’s cancellation policy:
Canceling your reservation … will result in a charge for the entire stay per room to your credit card.
Policies like this don’t make people love your company. It makes it look greedy, impersonal, and unfair.
May 21st, 2008 |
Humor and Satire, Links, Morality
I’m not much for wearing t-shirts with messages anymore, but I did get a kick out of this shirt:
May 21st, 2008 |
If ethics represents a genuine sphere of knowledge, it represents a sphere of potential progress (and regress).
—Sam Harris, The End of Faith: Religion, Terror, and the Future of Reason (W. W. Norton, 2004), p. 171.
May 20th, 2008 |
Humor and Satire, Politics
An unfortunately funny quote from eight years ago about Bush’s plan for reducing oil prices:
Gov. George W. Bush of Texas said today that if he was president, he would bring down gasoline prices through sheer force of personality, by creating enough political good will with oil-producing nations that they would increase their supply of crude.
“I would work with our friends in OPEC to convince them to open up the spigot, to increase the supply,” Mr. Bush, the presumptive Republican candidate for president, told reporters here today. “Use the capital that my administration will earn, with the Kuwaitis or the Saudis, and convince them to open up the spigot.”
May 19th, 2008 |
Animals, Health, Politics, Thoughts
I enjoyed reading “The Revolution Will Not Be Pasteurized.” The article is of particular interest to me because my family drinks unpasteurized milk. We have a milk cow that my mom and wife milk twice a day. We run the milk through a filter, cool it quickly, but do not pasteurize it.
There’s a debate about whether it should be legal or not to sell unpasteurized milk. Currently it’s illegal in half of the US states. Many people I know think it’s outrageous for the government to enforce that law. If people want to drink it, why should the government stop them?
Here’s the problem: dairys are dirty. I mean really dirty. The larger the dairy, the dirtier it is. Cows go to the bathroom at the most inconvenient times. They kick over the pail. They step in the pail. The pail or machine or milk jar may not have been sterilized properly. The teats may not have been washed thoroughly. The cow may have ate something diseased or become sick and passes tainted milk.
If the government allowed the sale of unpasteurized milk, more people would get sick. That’s the entire reason we started pasteurizing it. According to Nathanael Johnson, “Between 1919, when only a third of the milk in Massachusetts was pasteurized, and 1939, when almost all of it was, the number of outbreaks of milk-borne disease fell by nearly 90 percent.” The FDA claims that raw milk can be dangerous to health and is not healthier as claimed by raw milk advocates.
Yes, there might be healthy bacteria that are killed with pasteurization. (I’m sure we kill healthy bacteria when we cook meat, too.) Yes, there are some small farmers who are meticulously clean and could keep most of the harmful pathogens out of the milk. But what happens when one of their employees fail? And how could it be guaranteed as safe as pasteurized milk? How many people can get sick before they shut a dairy down?
I can see both perspectives. It makes sense to make selling unpasteurized milk illegal. It also makes sense to allow people to drink what they want, even if it ends up hurting them. Which is why they let they let us drink the raw milk from our own cow, but don’t allow us to sell it.
So, should the government make it legal to sell unpasteurized milk even though there is evidence of increased health risks? Or is the current system necessary to protect public health, even though people want to do it? Or is the government plain wrong, raw milk isn’t dangerous at all, and is actually more healthy than pasteurized milk? (If making that last claim, please cite a reputable scientific study, as I am interested.)
May 19th, 2008 |
Leadership, Life, Quotes
If you tell me how you get your feeling of importance, I’ll tell you what you are. That determines your character. That is the most significant thing about you.
—Dale Carnegie, How to Win Friends and Influence People (1981; orig 1936), p. 19.
May 17th, 2008 |
Agrarianism, Economics, Quotes
Good use of property … seems to require not only ownership but personal occupation and use by the owner. That is to say that the good use of property requires the widest possible distribution of ownership.
—Wendell Berry, “Property, Patriotism, and National Defense” in Home Economics (1986), p. 106.
May 16th, 2008 |
Humor and Satire, Links, Productivity, Quotes, Work
Seth Stevenson writes a humorous letter to a young procrastinator from a veteran slacker. Excerpt:
The root cause of my procrastination, in technical terms, is this: I’m lazy. Extremely lazy.
Don’t judge, pal—you’re lazy, too. It’s why you procrastinate. When there’s a difficult, disagreeable, or tedious chore that needs to get done, guess what? You don’t want to do it. So you don’t. Until you have to.
It’s just that simple, my slothful friend. And guess what else? The trick to overcoming procrastination is even simpler. Ready? Here it is:
Get off your fat badonk and stop procrastinating. Right now. No, not after the Gilmore Girls rerun ends. Now now.
Will you do this? No. You will not. You will dabble at the crossword for a while. Later, you might get a yogurt. Eventually, you’ll start reading pointless crap on the Internet. You see, you’re doing it as we speak! Because: You are lazy.
Understand that this will never, ever change. You will always be lazy, and you will always procrastinate.