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Legal Legos

Eric Rasmusen has some choice words in response to Cass Sunstein's "social construction of property" argument:

Watch It Again, For The First Time

Gil Milbauer on watching movies repetitively:

[E]ven though we seem to be watching the same movie over again, we really aren't. Each time we are more familiar with the movie and are able to focus on different aspects; like anticipating great lines/scenes, looking for continuity issues, thinking more deeply about how certain aspects relate to other things that come up later.

The Human Pickle

Remember that science experiment you did in elementary school where you plugged a pickle into a power source and turned it into a light bulb? Sure you do.

Microsoft has gone one step further. In the future, the pickle will be you: Read more »

Wondering what to do with all that extra hard drive space?

Not to worry - Japanese engineers have already developed a solution for putting all that extra space to good use:

Japanese engineers have been testing out a prototype of ultra high definition video (UHDV) which has 16 times greater image resolution than today?s best standard HDTV. UHDV uses 4,000 horizontal scanning lines, which is 4 times that of HDTV and over 6 times that of regular TV PAL broadcasts.

The Ayn Rand School for Tots

I picked up the fourth season of The Simpsons the other day, and caught the following scene from the episode, "A Streetcar Named Marge." Marge is meeting with a Ms. Sinclair - proprietor of the Ayn Rand School for Tots, an Ayn Rand lookalike, and voice acted by Jon Lovitz:

Marge: Maggie is allergic to strained pears, and she likes a bottle of warm milk before nap time.

The Wisdom of Youth

Found this in the local paper on Saturday:

The Law and Economics of Torture

There's been much talk in the blogosphere lately on the topic of torture. Unfortunately, most of the commentary has been disappointing for its strident dogmatism and abject refusal to consider possible--albeit unlikely--scenarios.

Belle Waring

If the situation is that dire ? torture one so that thousands may live, or whatever ? then the information you?re seeking is clearly valuable enough to die for.

The Conspiracy Against Free Lunches

Every so often, Roger Ebert surprises me - this time, with his understanding of economics. In his review of "Chain Reaction," Ebert writes:

The water-to-energy project is being run by Shannon and Collier, but they don't want to reveal that it has been successful. Why not? Free energy, we are told, would lead to recession, unemployment and plummeting stock prices, But would it? It seems to me free energy would unleash the greatest era of prosperity in planetary history.

The Greatest Mediocre President


Russell Roberts over at Cafe Hayek reminds me why William Henry Harrison is my favorite president.

Read more »

Equality and Rights

Timothy Sandefur is spooked by my recent post on positive rights and nationalistic discrimination. The source of his fear is an argument made by Anthony de Jasay - an argument which, unfortunately, I do not fully understand. Read more »

Sunday Song Lyric

Stealing a page from Juan Non-Volokh, here is one of my favorite songs from the greatest and best band in the world, Tenacious D. It is a cautious meditation on social revolution, drug policy, environmentalism, income redistribution, Shakespearean tragedy, and the continuing relevance of Lord Acton's famous dictum about the dangers inherent in political power. Behold, I present to you "City Hall":

All you people up there in City Hall,

Small World

Yesterday, while walking to my car after class, an older woman stopped me and said hello. She said she was a psychology professor and thought she already knew all of the Orthodox Jews who go to Georgia Tech (I wear my yarmulke in public so I am visibly Jewish). She asked me my name and mentioned that she knew my parents. Her name sounded vaguely familiar, and I asked if she had a son. She did, and I asked if he was ever a counselor at a summer camp in Memphis Tennessee. It turns out her son Matt was my camp counselor a little over a decade ago when I was in my pre-teens. Read more »

All Men Are Created Equal...

If all men are created equal, as The Declaration of Independence suggests, and if we are all endowed by our Creator--whether that be God, nature or something else--with certain unalienable Rights, then these rights must be universal and we may not distinguish between individuals on the basis of race, gender, ethnicity etc. with respect to rights. Read more »

More On Positive Rights

Chris Bertram jumps into the negative rights/positive rights debate. With reference to Allen Buchanan, Bertram argues that it is implausible to claim that positive rights will lead to ?unacceptably frequent and severe disruptions of individuals? activities as rational planners or to intrusions that are intuitively unjust.? Read more »

A Weakness In Minarchism

I agree with much of what my co-blogger Jonathan already wrote about the Volokh/Bainbridge debate over positive vs. negative rights, but there are a few things Jonathan left unsaid. Read more »