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Re: investments

On the simple yes-no question, 45% said it could sometimes be okay/appropriate to write about companies' requests for investment, 13% said it was never okay/appropriate, and 42% weren't sure.

On the more complicated question, 45% thought that the actual investment request I included was appropriate, 21% weren't sure, and 34% thought it was inappropriate for various reasons. Of those who thought it was inappropriate, about 10% thought investment requests were never appropriate, and the other 24% thought it was inappropriate for various specific reasons.

The most commonly cited reason was that people thought it felt like a bait-and-switch where I didn't tell them the post was leading up to an investment pitch. At first I felt sort of offended by this one - I titled the post "Shilling For Big Mitochondria"! But on further reflection I guess it makes sense. I had been interested in writing about DNP for a while, hearing about this company cemented it for me, and so it was an awkward pastiche of the post I would have written anyway and a post about the company. I can see how it would be jarring to read.

Other people thought I needed to take more precautions to inform people that investing in biotech companies is very risky and really only suitable for professional investors. The company was only accepting investment from accredited investors, which I thought made this a non-issue. I'm not sure whether the people saying this didn't know that, or whether they think even accredited investors need a special warning.

Other people thought it was a conflict of interest that my friend worked at the company. I'm...not sure this is true? I learn about a lot of things through my social network, and networking is a known way of doing and learning about things.

I think in general a lot of the problem was that people thought of this as me trying to claim that this was a hot stock tip that would make $$$, whereas I was trying to present it as a basically charitable opportunity to support a company doing really exciting and possibly world-changing research. If I was claiming it was a hot stock tip, then having a friend working there might be distorting my stock-evaluation ability. If it's just a cool opportunity to help with research, then...I'm not sure. This blog is fun, but it's only going to be actually worth our time if it helps change the world for the better. That's a tough order for a blog, and one of the few ways I can imagine it happening is if it helps connect people who can get involved in important institutions like charities, research programs - and yes, - companies - in ways that help them grow.

I have no ability to give people hot stock tips that will make them money, and in general you should assume I'm not doing this. But I know lots of amazing people trying to change the world who deserve more support than they're getting, and I'd like to be able signal-boost this when I think it's valuable.

My current plan is that if I ever do anything like this again, I'll do it on a Classified Thread (remember those?) where it won't feel out of place to anyone, and I'll specify that I have no reason to think it will make anybody any money. Also, please don't ask me to pitch your business; there is basically no chance it will work but it will make things awkward.

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You can find your way out of insomnia and into sleep by focusing in a counterintuitively alert way on your hypnagogic hallucinations, using them as a sort of biofeedback mechanism and following them as they change their characteristics in predictable ways:


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Another comment feature request (somebody's probably asked for this already): the ability to collapse a certain comment thread. Especially in the open threads, it's much easier to collapse an long, uninteresting thread than to scroll all the way past it.

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So I have a question for you smart and beautiful commenters. When assessing all the big COVID questions (was the whole lockdown worth it, how fast should reopening be, was it personally worth it for me) I think the biggest unknown is long-term cardiac effects. If I just spent 2% of my estimated remaining lifespan hiding from something that had a 0.03% chance of killing me, that’s pretty stupid. If COVID had a 0.03% chance of killing me but a 20% chance of significantly reducing my lifespan via heart damage, that’s entirely different.

Everyone quotes the same exact study proving frequent heart damage from COVID-19 (https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jamacardiology/fullarticle/2768916). This study has since undergone what Retraction Watch would call a “megacorrection”, and I feel like the effect size is so big it should have been reproduced many times by many hospitals. A more recent study of athletes looks far less threatening (https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jamacardiology/fullarticle/2777308), but still indicates that COVID-induced myocarditis is a real phenomenon. The pandemic has been raging long enough that I feel like such damage should be detectable in the form of say, an increase in heart attacks in young people in Lombardy and NY over the last year, but I’m not a medical doctor and I don't know if it will take much longer for such effects to manifest.

FWIW I’ve been hiding long enough that I will continue to do so until vaccinated, so don’t worry that I’m looking for an excuse to be irresponsible.

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Does anyone have any sleep recommendations for not waking up at 4am EVERY DAMN NIGHT?

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> Substack has removed the "like" button from comments here, as per your feedback.

And yet they have not removed it from your posts - thus creating a permanent Upvote Underclass, toiling forever underneath the guaranteed-superior metrics of He, the Heartgetter; the Sole Possessor of Internet Metric Wealth; He, who is clearly more Liked than others; He, to whom all the Gratitude Button Clicks are funnelled – He, Known As "Scott"...

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While I agree that "hearting" comments was a bit of a silly implementation in this context, the ability to acknowledge a comment without having to write a reply did serve a useful purpose. It was a nice way to signal that you found the comment thoughtful, useful, or of value in some way even if you didn't have anything specifically to add. Without that acknowledging mechanism you wouldn't even know if anyone even read your comment without replies. Maybe the community can think of a way to acknowledge comments that provide value without having to reply. Personally, I don't have a problem with "liking" comments in general. It's not a competition, just someone saying "thanks".

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Re DNP :


They used very low doses in mice - 1 mg/L drinking water and had good results

1 mg/day in humans can't be dangerous

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Since there is no politics allowed in this thread, I thought this might be a fitting question and I thought many people here may have a similar experience. If this crosses the line, feel free to remove and I apologize but I hope it is sufficiently meta.

Since I was a teenager, I have been interested in political issues, social issues and anything related to the culture war. I have diverse interests but topics usually only interest me if they relate to social and political philosophy. I have accumulated a lot of information and ideas related to stuff that is controversial.

As many of you probably have, I have developed eccentric and controversial opinions which socially isolate me from my peers. Sometimes I really wish that I had just took up an interest in physics, chemistry or history. I maybe wish I just looooved sports maybe.

I feel like this is kind of a wasteful accumulation of information if I do not actually use it to further advance my career or life in anyway. It seems like it just turned me into a weirdo. I am certain others have felt the same. Has anyone tried these approaches?

(1) Intentionally develop non-weird non-controversial interests as replacement.

(2) Abandon pursuing intellectual things and just watch Netflix or play video games.

(3) Just passively consume information and keep opinions to yourself and accept that.

(4) Try producing content in some way. (Currently considering this the most)

I very much enjoy interacting with people and producing content based on my ideas. But I am concerned about cancellation. I want to do Youtube or blogging the most. I am concerned about getting the wrong person upset and what they could do to my "real life." I can be anonymous for a while but that doesn't seem to work out so well even for very careful people. I am thinking I want to do youtube with my face but not my name and have no public profiles that could be used to identify me. This could at least make it so that someone has to work hard to get me in trouble. Could still happen though. Is this stupid?

Any personal experiences in this area? Thoughts? Thanks so much.

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Very happy to see likes gone. Reward signal proliferation is the herald of Moloch.

(Has anybody made a tumblr demetricator like they have for twitter or facebook? I wouldn’t go on the latter two even with it, but I’d head back to the former happily with it.)

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What’s the best resource for finding out the risk of a particular medical procedure? Not looking for anything super esoteric here, just statistics on basic procedures like an appendectomy.

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In the 1990s and early 2000s (if you were at least in your teens back then), what were your expectations for how the Internet would shape human society? Did things pan out the way you expect?

Personally, I was somewhat of an Internet utopian. I thought putting all of humanity's knowledge at everyone's fingertips would make everyone more rational and stamp out superstitions. I thought enabling instant worldwide communication would reduce mistrust between countries, ethnicities, and religions, because everyone would have friends from all over the world. Clearly I was naive, but I still think the Internet has done orders of magnitude more good than harm for the world: the instant access to information, the huge range of creative content, the easy access to TV shows, movies, games, the ability to navigate around any city in any foreign country as if it were my home town...life without the Internet seems unimaginable.

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Do you think mathematical proofs are important, or do you think you were tortured into learning them when the important stuff was in application? I am writing an article on the field of the history of science, and this question winds up being an essential question for understanding the difference between learning science and doing science, between learning math and doing math, between a philosophical and an engineering approach to knowledge.

Here is a three question survey where you can air your grievances. https://57vimme6sku.typeform.com/to/jFZDAkHY

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I enjoyed the post on Trapped Priors, and while I thought it had some insights into the problems, I didn't quite buy that (1) priors are trapped, (2) they can be trapped *without* an emotional response, and (3) any faulty Bayesian reasoning is necessary to describe what is going on.

For the case of dogs being scary, an emotional response is being confused with a factual statement. There is a difference between "Dogs are dangerous" and "Dogs will make me feel scared". The brain is predicting 'Dogs will make me feel scared'. When you see a picture of a dog, and it makes you feel scared, this is a legitimate positive example. It is correct to update that dogs make you feel scared. But, you need the emotional response to conflate this with 'Dogs are dangerous'. It is only when you do not separate the emotional response from the factual statement do you commit an error. For example, I can be emotionally scared of flying, but rationally accept that it is very safe. All the evidence that flying is safe won't change my prior that it will make me feel scared; partly because I already have a high prior that it is safe.

The second example is that of the polar bear. In this case, we are leaving out the priors on the friends evidence. Basically, how do you update on weak evidence? For example, I have a prior that there are no polar bears.

Day 1: I see no polar bears.

How do I update my prior?

Day 2: I see no polar bears.

How do I update?

Day 3: Friend says she sees a polar bear, but I do not see one. How do I update?

Day 4: Friend says she sees a polar bear, but I do not see one. How do I update?


Eventually, I need to update that my friend is very unreliable. So say on Day N, my friend says she sees a polar bear, *and* shows me photographic evidence. The evidence is not just 'friend saw polar bear and has picture', the evidence is 'friend who was previously wrong for N days now has a picture'. It is correct Bayesian updating to require stronger evidence from this friend.

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A question for the women here (if any?): Do you find Tom Hanks' character from "Saving Private Ryan" to be attractive?




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Here is some accordion music: https://youtu.be/ZrnNAOc82iU

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Are there any cogent theories out there as to how our sense of smell developed from an evolutionary perspective? Last time I checked, the biochemical foundations of how our sense of smell works in the first place are not entirely understood, but no one seems to care that much at all.

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I've been brainstorming about ways that marking "∼new∼" posts should work.

Mostly because I had a long-unscratched itch to write software (since I don't do it at my job any more), I wrote a sample interface for new comments that is currently in this state:

1. Comments dynamically populated because of background loading (which can be turned off) get the ∼new∼ label, so you can control-F through them.

2. It has the classic "set the time for marking posts as ∼new∼ we had with bakkot's script at the old blog. See https://i.imgur.com/QRCkUR8.png for an example.

3. You can manually set that time to "now" or "latest time of any comment currenty on the page".

4. If you are not on a tab and it gets new posts, the icon gets a blue dot added to it. (Oops, Firefox-only for now. Why must Chrome be so difficult?)

5. I also make up new letter-based avatars for people who haven't uploaded a pic yet. https://i.imgur.com/NKhC0DC.png I wasn't sure it worked with accented characters until I saw Etienne's comment below!

Is this useful? Is this a good start for "hey Substack, something like *this*?" You can look at the code (all on Github) if you want, but it's not as elegant as Pycea's. (I have this bad habit of falling back on

plain JavaScript when I should be using jQuery.) Hopefully something useful for people to steal.

It works with Chrome-based browsers and Firefox. There is now a Firefox extension you can install directly from the Github release page: https://github.com/EdwardScizorhands/ACX-simple

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Any gardeners around? Starting to get my seeds started and excited for the season. Going to try to grow kajari melons and quinoa as my weird experiment plants this year, and also making a second attempt at ghost peppers (plus all the humdrum beans and tomatoes and such). What are you guys growing?

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Last week after watching Paths of Glory, I ended up on Stanley Kubrick's Wikipedia page (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stanley_Kubrick). Perhaps some people here are immersed enough in Wikipedia controversies to know where this is headed.

The first thing you will notice is that the page rather conspicuously lacks an infobox, that wonderfully convenient and standard portion of prominent Wikipedia articles which gives readers a place to look for generic biographical information such as dates and locations of birth and death, cause of death, relatives, years active, and often a very brief summary of work. Instead there's just a picture of him (from before he was even a director, but that's another issue) with his signature below. This irritated me. It is the most prominent biographical page violating this standardized format I've ever seen. But I thought, ok, maybe it was recently edited by someone unfamiliar with Wikipedia. Perhaps someone accidentally removed it with a recent edit. I headed to the edit history page, and MAN OH MAN was I unprepared for the rabbit hole I was going down.

Turns out this is a long-standing and incredibly bitter controversy on Kubrick's page which has been mentioned in the WSJ (https://www.wsj.com/articles/when-wikipedias-bickering-editors-go-to-war-its-supreme-court-steps-in-1525708429) and the NYT (https://www.nytimes.com/2019/04/08/us/wikipedia-harassment-wikimedia-foundation.html). Practically any reader familiar with Wikipedia will recognize the current state of the page to be a clear aberration. And yet, citing "lack of consensus", the Wikipedia Arbitration Committee has declared the subject off-limits until September of 2021 and has instituted harsh sanctions against anyone trying to edit the page to normalcy or even discussing the issue. I was quite dismayed by this, but I became truly appalled after I dug into the edit war and discovered that just a few obsessive, megalomaniacal editors have been lording over the page and trying to impose their anti-"idiotbox" (their term) philosophy on whatever pages they get their hands on. There were similar efforts by one such prominent editor to remove the infobox on Frank Sinatra's page (as of now they've lost that fight, thankfully) among others. All the while they've been coordinating amongst one another to vote brigade on polls concerning the question and to get opposing users banned, often successfully, for continuing to make the absurdly obvious case that Kubrick's page should have its infobox, like the pages for every other as-prominent person in the arts.

As I said, there will be no further discussion allowed on the issue until September of 2021. They originally pushed for a 3-year ban - THREE YEARS! - but were not granted that request. So for now I just wanted to bring some attention to this unimportant issue which nevertheless has been driving me crazy. I will post about this again in a later open thread once the ban has been lifted so that anyone else who is bothered by the current page can come join the effort to get this fantastic director the infobox he so deserves.

Also, I highly recommend Paths of Glory. It's a beautiful film.

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I’ve really enjoyed reading one of your book review posts after I have read the book. It helps me see things in a different light and I rarely have anyone around me offline where I can continue the conversation around the ideas presented in the book.

Was curious if the group could help craft a go-to list (3-5 should do it) of some of the most impactful books (as defined by him) Scott read and reviewed.

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Possibly interesting idea for determining whether chickens are conscious.

tl;dr: Are you a chicken? If not, then chickens are likely not conscious.

Slightly longer version: string together the [[self-sampling assumption]] with some stats on how many chicken-moments exist vs. humans-moments. If chickens are conscious, it's unlikely you'd find yourself in a human body, you're much more likely to be a chicken. Therefore, the fact that you're not a chicken has to be evidence against the idea that chickens are in the class of conscious entities.

If the numbers for chickens aren't large enough to be interesting (ok, maybe it's unlikely you'd be a human, but not possible), then at the very least this is an argument against insects being conscious, and *definitely* an argument against panpsychism (you're almost certainly not going to be experiencing existence as a human of everything is a little bit conscious, since humans make up a vanishingly small amount of matter in the universe)

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Here's a life hack that's not as popular as it deserves to be.

If you are in the US and not feeding yourself from a CSA, it might be worthwhile for you to try out an irregular produce delivery service, i.e. Hungry Harvest, Imperfect Foods, or Misfits Market.

I tried all 3, and I currently get a weekly Hungry Harvest box and an occasional Imperfect Foods box. (My experience with Misfits Market was very limited, since Hungry Harvest seems better in every way possible.) In my experience, all 3 are perfectly legitimate businesses - no obligation, will let you either cancel entirely or skip deliveries at any time, will resolve problems really fast and in your favor. I've had just about no quality issues with the produce (but I did get some fruit that was way too tiny). With Imperfect Foods, I did have some issues with how the groceries were packed.

Hungry Harvest and Imperfect Foods currently allow you to completely customize your box. Misfits Market seems to allow it in some areas, but not in others. Hungry Harvest will deliver your groceries for free if they are worth more than $30, and Imperfect Foods will deliver them for free if they are worth more than $60.

I found Hungry Harvest to be by far the best, but it is the one that doesn't deliver to all that many places. (And also it's hub-based, and I have no way of telling whether the other hubs are as great as the one that's near me in Maryland. But the fact that it's hub-based might be part of why it's so good.) The website says it currently delivers to "Maryland, Washington, DC, Virginia, Greater Philadelphia, Southern New Jersey, Northern Delaware, South Florida, The Triangle Area & Charlotte in North Carolina & the Detroit Metro Area." If you are lucky enough to be in one of their delivery areas (and if you don't have a CSA), I'm pretty sure you won't regret trying them out.

What's so awesome (besides the fact that you help farmers, suppliers, and other businesses sell perfectly good groceries that would otherwise be wasted)? A lot of things. You spend less time at supermarkets. You get to try things you never tried or never even knew existed and at very good prices. That was how I first tried dragonfruit and romanesco. At some point I had 6 kinds of oranges on my counter because fancy restaurants in DC area refused their deliveries due to the pandemic, and Hungry Harvest picked them up. You get all kinds of nice extras from local businesses who just realized some of their groceries were too close to the sell-by date or who decided to change their packaging.

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I very much enjoy the Book "S." by Dough Dorst and JJ. Abrams. It's presented in the form of a old library book with wide margins, with one story being the original book text and another one told in comments written on the margin by two readers (communicating via this book). See this picture here for an idea: https://www.worldliteraturetoday.org/sites/default/files/2014/May/openbook-markings.jpg

This made me wonder: Are there versions of this concept for real literature? Like a novel by Joyce or Hemingway or a philosophy text by Kant or Plato, with comments, interpretations and discussion added on the margins? I'm not looking for a scholarly discussion, more like a book club-style commenting to read along with the main text. If the text is very dull, I'd like very fun-to-read comments as a counter to keep me interested.

The closest to this concept I've found so far are bible comments (which I find very enjoyable to read, I found a good one in German that suits me) and a philosophy seminar I visited at university where our lecturer would discuss a text (Blaise Pascal) by reading one or two sentences, then taking 10-15 minutes of time to comment on these, then move on to the next sentence. It took us one semester to read less then 10 pages, but it was really interesting.

Any suggestions?

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Unofficial book review survey: https://forms.gle/1aU6BdcAt5ZKit7n7

I'll send the results to Scott.

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I'd like the 'founding member' icons to be removed from commenter's avatars. They are distracting.

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A question about assurance contracts:

The citizens of an ancient city state needs to build a wall around their city this year, or else they will be enslaved by invading barbarians, making everyone very unhappy. Building the wall is going to cost 1000 gold coins. The citizens are libertarian and want to solve the problem without taxation. You have been summoned from the future to organize the funding with assurance contracts.

Wealth in this society is unequally distributed according to a Pareto distribution. There are a few wealthy people with thousands of gold coins, a bigger group with smaller fortunes, many people with one or two coins and a large group of people who are completely destitute.

A simple solution would be to have people pledge to pay for the wall, and collect the money once enough money have been pledged. But this would incentivize free-riders to wait with their pledge and hope that others pledge enough so that they don't need to. Another option is to collect pledges from all citizens, and then return the excess gold. But what's a fair formula for returning the excess gold?

More generally, if anyone knows a good popular write-up on the practical implementation of assurance contracts (especially dominant assurance contracts) I would be very grateful.

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> 32,872 people on the ACX mailing list

So you can banish just 104 subscribers and get to a nice round 32,768 subscribers.

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"I am still trying to find the right balance between helping people make good choices vs. trying to be a level more sophisticated than "police officer teaching a D.A.R.E. class to high schoolers"

Good luck with that, there are always people who take "do not do this highly dangerous thing as it will end very badly for you" as a personal challenge 😀

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I'm just a sliiightly bit afraid about the degree to which Scott worries about the negative consequences of his posts. (Zvi would say something about asymmetric justice, I think). I hope it doesn't end up paralyzing him, or worse, stop him from saying what he really believes in his natural truthful style out of fear of the decisions 1% of his readers might take with it -- which in absolute numbers is significant when you have a big readership. He shouldn't forget the benefits also scale with the numbers, even if they are harder to see.

Don't get me wrong, I admire the desire to write well enough that absolutely everyone understands exactly what you mean. Personally, I would be overwhelmed and paralyzed, but I'm no Scott with words. But I would start feeling uneasy if "woe, 1% of people misunderstood the content; I'd better improve my communication skills" turns into regular "woe, 1% of people decided to do something I think is a bad idea partly as a consequence reading the information and my opinions; I'd better reiterate that they shouldn't do it and exaggerate one side of the info next time around."

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Guys! I got 8hrs of sleep last night! I did wake up a few times but got back under the veil pretty quickly with tje hypnagogic hallucination method posted in this thread. Thank you whoever posted that link!

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Coming out of an obnoxious cold, I have a few interrelated questions:

1. What determines whether a cold gives you a runny nose, or a sore throat, or a cough, or all of the above? Is it a feature of the virus (so that if I hear you coughing, and then catch your cold, I can expect mine to involve a lot of coughing too), or does it vary based on the person (some interaction of virus genetics and person genetics, say), or is there a way to nudge a particular cold (e.g. if I have a strong preference for stuffy nose over sore throat, is there medication I can take that will shift the symptoms accordingly)?

2. Why is coughing a thing? It makes good sense from the virus-spreading point of view, of course, but how come a near-involuntary process that causes the infernal racket of a coughing fit hasn't been selected out of the population?

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I just finished reading UNSONG and really enjoyed it (I know, I know - I'm late to the party).

Scott, have you given any thought to changing it or writing an adaptation for a different medium? It would make a pretty great graphic novel, and I can see it appealing to the same crowd that likes Douglas Adams, Pratchett, Gaiman etc.

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I am still very sad about #5. The Like button is nearly a strict positive IMO, and the complaints about it seem to boil down to "a friend of a friend once believed something because it had a heart next to it" urban legends. I neither understand nor appreciate this strange local custom.

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Is there a way to remove the blue circles?

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Lorien psych has a new page on alcoholism. Interesting like most pages there, thanks Scott! Some (possible) typos I found:

> Your primary care doctor should be fine; if your case is very unusual, you could seek a psychiatrist or addictionologist but if for some reason they’re not up to the task you could also find a psychiatrist or addictionologist.

Shouldn't one of the "a psychiatrist or addictionologist" occurrences be smth else, e.g. "an addictionologist or psychiatrist"?

> Please don’t let rehab’s advertising campaigns

rehabs' ?


> sSome studies

Some studies

> and you can probably yourself find

find yourself

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People love to talk about IQ here. Have you ever taken an IQ test (given by a psychologist, not online)? For what reason and what was your score?

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The one positive consequence of lockdown for me has been learning to cook, which has been facilitated by the plethora of excellent information about cooking available from such sources as reddit, YouTube and books (largely books recommended by helpful bits of reddit and/or written by YouTubers).

Now that I'm looking at buying my first solo residence later in the year, I would like to learn about interior design in the same way so as to be able to make it look nice in keeping with my taste. However, so far I have not been able to find online resources or communities of anywhere near the same quality as for cooking. Is this because they don't exist, or because I'm looking in the wrong places? Are there good books but no good subs? Is there a Kenji Lopez-Alt of interior design? Any help much appreciated.

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Q: What do we think the economic ramifications of a jubilee (where we forgave all unsecured personal debt every 50 years or so) would be?

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Has the proliferation of the Simulation Hypothesis led to a rise of simulation themes in cases of psychosis?

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Learned recently about the Ottoman Land Code of 1858, and its possible role as tinder for the Palestine/Israel conflict. I'm fuzzy on the details, and not sure how settled* the history is, but it felt like it touched favourite SSC/ACT themes like James C. Scott's stuff re: state bureaucracy trying to govern peasants, and David Friedman's stuff re: a positive account of property rights.

Very roughly: small-time Palestinian farmers had been farming their land for generations, often communally owned (also it sounds like there might have been some kind of distinction between right of ownership + collecting tax, and right of residency+ working it, or something?). The Ottoman Empire wanted to make taxing it easier, so started requiring land be registered under a clear name / deed of ownership.

For various reasons, the small-time farmers often didn't end up registered on their land. This included communal land ending up registered to powerful individuals; not wanting your name on it so your son wouldn't be conscripted to the military; etc., but also there was a feeling that this was mostly just the Empire's formality, it won't *really* change anything, we're still going to keep working our land like our ancestors did and like our descendants still will. (Also the new landlords were sometimes local, but also often foreign e.g. Christians? But I'm not sure how that worked.)

But the new officially-Empire-recognized landlords disagreed, and did consider the land theirs to e.g. sell if they wanted—for instance, to sell it to immigrating European Jewish people wanting to escape the pogroms and other anti-Semitism and start a Jewish homeland there.

*The book I'm reading is Harms and Ferry (2008) - The Palestine Israel Conflict: A Basic Introduction (2nd ed.); and I skimmed https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ottoman_Land_Code_of_1858

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What is the explanation for the low covid-19 infection numbers in China?

It seems almost certain they're lying by orders of magnitude, but how come it's not showing?

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Scott, not sure if you'll see this...but telling us to leave comments instead of emailing in the 4th bullet point of a newsletter is not going to work. I mean, it worked on me, here...but generally speaking you probably should just make the email address on the list autorespond with your explanation, or no one will ever see it in the right context.

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Why don't we use a space ship to grab defunct satellites orbiting the Earth, and carry them off to the Moon to drop them on its south pole? That way, when astronauts land there to build the first Moon base, there will be a lot of spare parts lying around that they can use as scrap materials.

I'm sure this sounds like a joke, but follow my reasoning: A big problem with building a Moon base is that it costs a fortune to transport building materials there from Earth's surface. However, there are literally tons of potential building materials already in space in the form of disused satellites. A lot of money has already been spent getting those satellites off the surface. For just a little more (I'm guessing), the satellites could be sent to the Moon. All we'd have to do is get an unmanned space ship with a grabber arm and some long-endurance propulsion system (solar sail, ion engine) into space, have it grab dead satellites, turn on its propulsion, and slowly move them out to the Moon. It wouldn't matter if it took a year for the duo to reach the Moon and for the reusable space ship to drop the satellite on the south pole like a bomb.

This would kill two birds with one stone: the amount of space debris around Earth would diminish, while the amount of scarce scrap materials made of aluminum, titanium and silicon would build up within walking distance of the Moon base site. Astronauts could refashion it into useful objects.

The "bomber" space craft would go back and forth between the Earth and Moon until it finally fell apart.

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