Fight the global tyranny of the metric system!

Who knew that the metric system was planned by the French revolutionary Robespierre and adopting it would lead inevitably to the introduction of the guillotine? We should be thankful that there are those who are aware of this danger and want to make sure that the US sticks with the British system, even if it is out of step with the rest of the world, because is not a made up system that seeks to break our links with what the nation’s founders bequeathed to us.

We’re #1, baby, and so whatever measurement system we have must be the best and others should conform to what we have.

It is ultimately the stupidity that is going to lead to disaster.

Rain disrupts cricket World Cup

Because cricket matches take such a long time, are played in open-air stadiums, and cannot be played when the ground is wet, they are highly prone to being interrupted by rain. According to the rules of the one-day game, each team must face a minimum of 120 deliveries of the allocated 300 for the game to be counted. Anything less than that and the match is considered a no-decision and the two points that goes to the winner is shared between the two teams.
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Get ready for an anti-progressive propaganda blitz

The US is a one-party state and that party can be accurately called the Pro-War, Pro-Business Party (PWPBP) controlled by the oligarchy. It has two factions, called Democrats and Republicans. Ideological debate within this party is restricted to a narrow spectrum that only encompasses neoliberalism, neoconservatism, and right-wing extremism. This party has unanimous support from the establishment media and much of the intelligentsia, two groups that can be accurately labeled by the Chinese pejorative of ‘running dogs’, because of the tendency of dogs to do what their masters says in return for a few scraps. (It is an accurate label but one I hesitate to use because of my fondness for dogs who have many sterling qualities that these running dogs lack.)
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Trams always win in collisions with cars

In cities where trams share the road with cars, they can be involved in collisions when cars swerve into their lanes. The only option a driver of a tram has to prevent a collision is to brake. But since the tram is so much heavier than a car, the occupants of the tram feel only a slight impact. Both those factors may explain the calm manner in which tram drivers respond to car drivers trying to cut them off.

The puzzling stability of cricket bails

In cricket, there are three upright sticks (called stumps) about knee height behind the batter. If the ball delivered by the bowler hits any of the three stumps, the batter is out. This is the case if the batter completely misses the ball or hits it and the ball still goes on to hit the stumps. In order to provide an unambiguous signal that the ball has hit the stumps, on top of the stumps are two small cylindrical objects known as ‘bails’ that straddle the two gaps between the three stumps. These bails rest on grooves carved into the top of the stumps and for the batter to be out, at least one of the bails has to be dislodged and fall to the ground. The grooves are supposed to be deep enough that the wind won’t dislodge them but shallow enough that even very slight contact by the ball with any of the three stumps will cause them to fall. On very windy days, umpires have the option of using heavier bails.
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Puzzling text exchange

I almost never use my cell phone, keeping it largely for emergencies, and I give the number out to just a few people, mostly close friends and family members. Hence I get many fewer junk calls on the cell phone than on my landline. But a few days ago, I received the following text message from a number that I did not recognize but was from my own area code.

The message said, “Dr. Singham, [name] here. What time do you think you’ll be on campus today? Thx”

The [name] was unfamiliar to me so I replied, “I’m confused. What is this about?”

I then got the following, “Just touching base. Then we came upstairs and found you”

This puzzled me even more since I had been at home the whole day and so I replied “I think there must be some mistake. I have not been on campus for some time.”

I did not hear from the person again.

It does not seem like a bot that was doing this. There seemed to be no point served and I have been puzzling over what it was all about.

Any ideas?

Goldman Sachs and sovereign wealth funds

The Goldman Sachs investment bank has been a force of financial evil for a long time and yet it has managed to use its power and influence to avoid being brought to account for its actions. Matt Taibbi did an expose of the bank and said that it had “engineered every major market manipulation since the Great Depression” and gave it the memorable description of a “great vampire squid wrapped round the face of humanity”. But even after the financial collapse of 2008, it escaped serious accountability thanks to its cozy relationship with Department of Justice under president Obama.
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Entitled comedians should stop taking cheap shots at millennials

Around this time of year, many commentators take the opportunity to make mock graduation speeches as a way of giving advice to young people and comedian Bill Maher used his ‘speech’ to attack the younger generation, all lumped under the ‘millennial’ label, as pampered whiny brats with a strong sense of entitlement who have been so coddled by their parents and the ‘politically correct’ environments of their schools and colleges that they are in for a rude shock when they enter the ‘real’ world.
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Brexit, drugs, and fly-tipping

It’s been awhile since I looked at the goings on in the UK as it staggers towards yet another Brexit deadline on October 31. The latest wrinkle is that the Labour Party managed to squeak through to a narrow victory in a by-election in Peterborough, just edging out the candidate for the newly-formed Brexit party led by Nigel Farage by a margin of 10,484 to.9,801 votes. The Conservative party trailed in third place with 7,243.
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