Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Ten Things I Know to be True

Just saw someone post a link to their blog with the teaser, "Ten things I know to be true - for me."  So I decided to do a list of ten things I know to be true. Period.

1) F=ma, P=mv, (and a lot of other things, at least in Newtonian space where most of us live unless you're on a spaceship going almost the speed of light, then things get weird).

2) Economics works.  Raise the price of something and people will want less of it.  Lower the cost, and they will want more.  That is one reason crime surged in the 1960s and '70s: we lowered the cost of committing crime by turning justice from punishment/incarceration to "rehabilitation."  Economics is also why avocados are nearly always available at the grocery store despite a short shelf life and very specific growing conditions needed.

3) Some people think feeling acceleration is fun.  Some people are scared by it.  The former group likes roller coasters and driving fast.  The latter group drives their Volvo SUVs at 40 mph in the fast lane and come to a full and complete stop before turning.  I live in a town full of the second group.

4) The corporate world demands conformity and innovation at the same time. If you can pull that off, you can make a lot of money. I can't.

5) Speed limits in the United States are generally not set for maximum safety, but maximum revenue generation by writing tickets.  This means most of them are about 10 to 15 mph too slow for safety (yes, higher speed limits can be safer).

6) Caffeine is a legal addictive drug.  Thank heavens.

7) I have no idea how women wear high heels, but I'm sure glad they do (yes, I stole that one).

8) Flying these days has to be one of the worst experiences possible that people voluntarily do short of joining the military.

9) No matter what laws are passed, criminals will not obey them.

10) There is a cost to everything.  The trick in life is to figure out if the cost is worth the benefit.  People how don't pay the cost themselves (e.g., politicians) usually exaggerate the benefit while underestimating the cost.

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