Monday, August 3, 2009

HOT5 Dailiy 8/3/2009

1. "The Dangers of Making Everything a COIN Fight" Is Afghanistan actually a counterinsurgency war?

Representative Sample: Is Afghanistan a nation or a collection of tribes and tribal governments which at times work together but more often than not fight each other?

2. "Steyn: Health care as a liberty issue" Something completely ignored by health care "reform" proponents: freedom.

Representative Sample: How did the health-care debate decay to the point where we think it entirely natural for the central government to fix a collective figure for what 300 million freeborn citizens ought to be spending on something as basic to individual liberty as their own bodies?

3. "Unverifiable "Knowledge" is Demonstrably Trivial." Uses a friendly fire incident to illustrate important points about knowledge & perception.

Representative Sample: We are fundamentally bounded in our rationality. We are bounded by the physical architecture of our brain, our experiences, what we already know and believe, our feelings, our self-interest. We don't examine every possible option, or every scrap of data before we make a decision.

4. "Lies, Damned Lies, and Statistics (4): Manipulating the Y-axis Scale in Graphs" A great visual example of  how a graphic representation can mislead rather than inform. 

Representative Sample:Another common manipulation of statistics: play a bit with the starting and ending values on the y-axis of your graphs. This can give astonishing results. I prepared a fictional example

5. "Where’s the Money for Responsible People?" Easy answer: it's going to the irresponsible instead.

Representative Sample: I’m trying to think if there’s some area of life where I can be stupid and irresponsible now, so I can get paid by Obama in the future. Because so far I’ve really screwed myself by doing things right

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