Roundup Sept 15

John J  Ray’s Greenwatch site.  Converting a flat line into a trend (hint, check the scale!) and a list of handy Green one-liners. 

 Global climate update. Check out the ten-year trend in April temperatures. Sure, this is cherry picking. It also looks like cooling!

Fallout from the financial crisis, crime not paying so well in Ireland.

The angry genius of Les Murray. J M Coertze on Les Murray. h/t Jason Soon.

The purpose of education. What about getting educated? h/t Steve Horwitz on Coordination Prob.

Education has one salient enemy in present-day America, and that enemy is education—university education in particular. To almost everyone, university education is a means to an end. For students, that end is a good job. Students want the credentials that will help them get ahead. They want the certificate that will give them access to Wall Street, or entrance into law or medical or business school. And how can we blame them?… Students come to college with the goal of a diploma in mind—what happens in between, especially in classrooms, is often of no deep and determining interest to them.

In college, life is elsewhere. Life is at parties, at clubs, in music, with friends, in sports. Life is what celebrities have. The idea that the courses you take should be the primary objective of going to college is tacitly considered absurd…If universities stopped issuing credentials, half of the clients would be gone by tomorrow morning, with the remainder following fast behind.

Canada teaches the US a lesson about creating jobs by deregulation.

Canada has recovered all the jobs it lost in the 2009 recession, and Alberta’s oil sands are no small part of that. The province is on track to become the world’s second-largest oil producer, after Saudi Arabia, within 10 years. Meanwhile Mr. Obama clings to his subsidies for solar panels and his religious faith in green jobs.

TransCanada’s Keystone XL pipeline, if the U.S. ever issues the permit, will mean $20 billion in investment. The company says the construction phase will require 13,000 direct hires and indirect new jobs could total 118,000 in the U.S.

But Keystone XL is only a fraction of the potential that could be released if Mr. Obama changed his energy policy. In a study commissioned by the American Petroleum Institute and released last week, the energy consultancy Wood MacKenzie estimates that pro-development policies could, by 2030, “support an additional 1.4 million jobs, and raise over $800 billion of cumulative additional government revenue.”

For nerds

Regime uncertainty in the US.

Research on institutions, incentives and field experiments with firms.

From the archives

Secular Humanist organizations in Europe 1972.

You couldn’t make it up.

CSIRO goes POMO  h/t CL.  Love the doctoral thesis.

Along with polar bears, vintners are amongst global warming’s most pitiable victims.  “Grape growers are already suffering emotional stress because of climate change,”.  

Fleming has the decency to mention an oversupply, ferocious competition and those chill winds buffeting the global economy. But as there are no career prospects to be mined from real-world factors, it is climate change on which her familiarity with literary theory is brought to bear.
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7 Responses to Roundup Sept 15

  1. JamesK

    Crime is not paying.

    What was old is new again.

    A pint of plain is yer only man.

  2. coz

    ooh there’s uzzer peoples awake here.

  3. Education has one salient enemy in present-day America, and that enemy is education—university education in particular. To almost everyone, university education is a means to an end. For students, that end is a good job.

    That was never true for me… my favourite subjects were usually the pointless ones, and I usually took the view that university education was not aimed at getting a job but was aimed at furthering knowledge and learning, and that knowledge and learning didn’t necessarily get one ahead in the world. Then again I didn’t do too brilliantly either, so I suppose it all evens out…

  4. Rafe

    Tim you would have enjoyed Bertrand Russell’s essay on “useless knowledge”.

    The diabolical problems of the ALP represent a failure of education, and in particular a failure of intellect and intellectuals (who for the most part support the ALP), as signaled by Barzun in The House of Intellect (1957). It is indicative of the failure of intellectuals in Australia that Barzun has not been mentioned in the debate on education in the last three decades or so.

  5. I know I enjoyed his book on idleness :)

  6. Rafe

    That was the first of his books that I bought!

    On useless knowledge.

    “Curious learning not only makes unpleasant things less pleasant, but also makes pleasant things more pleasant. I have enjoyed peaches and apricots more since I have known that they were first cultivated in China in the early days of the Han dynasty; that Chinese hostages held by the great King Kanisaka introduced them into India, whence they spread to Persia, reaching the Roman Empire in the first century of our era; that the word “apricot” is derived from the same Latin source as the word “precocious” because the apricot ripens early; and that the A as the beginning was added by mistake , owing to a false etymology. All this makes the fruit taste much sweeter.”

    On the topic of Bertrand Russell, this is Bryan Magee’s story of meeting Russell and getting to know him. This file is slow to load but if you are interested in Russell it is worth the wait!

  7. Winston Smith

    Thank you Rafe – you learn something new every day, or the day has been a waste.

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