# blueollie

## Ok, what is going on here?

The issue: there are some inherently illogical statements (example: “This statement is a lie.” )

Ok, say the correct answer is “B”. Then that means that you have a 25 percent chance of getting that right, which is A and D, but you have a 50 percent chance of selecting either A or D by choosing at random.

## Good cartoon day: Tuesday 13 January 2015

Our local paper carried some good cartoons yesterday.

Yes, I’d love to scream “cheap shot”, but remember the shills that the tobacco industry hired? And, of course, a single study rarely means much. Now established scientific consensus is usually right, much to chagrin to climate change deniers, creationists, advocates of “alternative medicine”, rabid anti-GMO crackpots and other assorted woo-woos.

Yes, distinguishing between adjectives and verbs matters. :-)

See point one. :-)

January 15, 2015

December 4, 2014

October 27, 2014

## Halloween 2014…my attitude towards charity

Ha! I can always add the gu/powerbar samples that come in running race “goodie bags”. :-)

Really, this is a time for teenagers to shake us down for candy?

Oh, I admitted that I enjoyed Randazza’s rant in response to the “Dear Prudence” letter (which I think was a troll letter):

Dear Prudence,
I live in one of the wealthiest neighborhoods in the country, but on one of the more “modest” streets—mostly doctors and lawyers and family business owners. (A few blocks away are billionaires, families with famous last names, media moguls, etc.) I have noticed that on Halloween, what seems like 75 percent of the trick-or-treaters are clearly not from this neighborhood. Kids arrive in overflowing cars from less fortunate areas. I feel this is inappropriate. Halloween isn’t a social service or a charity in which I have to buy candy for less fortunate children. Obviously this makes me feel like a terrible person, because what’s the big deal about making less fortunate kids happy on a holiday? But it just bugs me, because we already pay more than enough taxes toward actual social services. Should Halloween be a neighborhood activity, or is it legitimately a free-for-all in which people hunt down the best candy grounds for their kids?

—Halloween for the 99 Percent

Now lest you just see me a spoil sport: the neighborhood that I live in (and have since 1991) has been taken over by (mostly) student housing; hence we have few trick-or-treaters anymore. There was a time when we had a mix of neighborhood kids and kids from poor neighborhoods.

And yes, some of the “poor” moms were pretty bold; they brazenly asked for “one for myself”; from their size, I wonder how much of the collected candy was actually getting to the kids. And yes, I told them “no…kids only”.

Now about the charity No, I am NOT wealthy; together, my wife and I have a household income that puts us in the 85-90’th percentile or so. Put another way: we can go to an NFL game, but we stay in non-luxury hotels and sit in Democrat seats. :-) (first row of the upper deck mostly; good sightlines).

But I’ve always been uncomfortable with the social division that enables panhandlers to see me and, on visuals alone, think that I have money to give them.

I am much more comfortable helping “peer to peer”; in this setting, there is no “one person is better than another person” but rather just “helping someone out who is having a rough time”; sort of “we do it for each other when someone is in need.”

I am just not comfortable at all with social stratification.

October 27, 2014

## Dunning-Kruger effect: The Flipside with Michael Loftus

You might have head that the Dunning-Kruger effect was “stupid people aren’t smart enough to realize that they are stupid”. But in fact, the paper was titled Unskilled and Unaware of it: How difficulties in recognizing one’s own incompetence lead to inflated self assessments.

The first example was …humor. The clueless amateurs thought that they were just as funny as established comedians.

I was reminded of that when I saw a clip of a right wing attempt to mimic The Daily Show. The attempt is called The Flipside with Michael Loftus. Judge for yourself. :-)

October 16, 2014

October 12, 2014

## One (of many) reasons I was never successful with the ladies

September 28, 2014

## My take on Birthdays

Now, if there is some omnipotent deity that knows when you will die, this is correct. But as someone else points out: we die via a “bathtub curve” function.

That is, given our current age, say $x$, we have an “expected time left to live $l(x)$ and as we age, the quantity $x + l(x)$ increases, even though, after the risk of early death is over, $l(x)$ is a decreasing function of $x$.

Of course, $l(x)$ is changed if there is a war, famine, pestilence, etc.

September 16, 2014

## Snarky quips: US Senate race, Pearls Before Swine, etc.

The US Senate races: Paul Krugman doesn’t know and neither do I. Polling isn’t nearly the quality or quantity as it was for a Presidential race. So, based on…well, not much, I’d have to favor the R’s as Nate Silver’s model does. Too much has to go right for the D’s to maintain control; my 95 percent confidence interval for Democratic (caucus) seats ranges [47, 51]; I’d be delighted with 50 seats.

Pearls Before Swine

click for larger…

September 5, 2014