Feb 172016
 

I recently came across a quote attributed to Jon Stewart. Essentially, the quote said that it’s not mutually exclusive to support law enforcement officers and hold them to a high standard. This is similar to a principle that I find very compelling; namely, applying the same standard to people you support as you apply to people you don’t support. I think most people would agree to this in principle, but most would fail to actually adhere to it. In other words, this principle becomes very, very attenuated in reality, thanks to a well established subjective bias. Perhaps the most obvious manifestation of this comes about from political ideology. Find me […]

 Posted by at 3:16 pm
Sep 162015
 

I’m pretty interested in healthcare reform because it’s a hard problem and, being someone who likes to solve problems, I’m drawn to hard problems. It’s also such a damned divisive issue that it seems like it should be pretty easy to come up with a solution that’s better than what most politicians believe should be done. Some things to note before we get started. First, this is a really complex issue. If anyone came up with an optimal solution, it would be purely by luck. Anyone who claims they have the solution or confidently claims that their solution is better than another is full of shit. In other words, be wary […]

 Posted by at 2:24 pm
Jul 252015
 

I’m not into fashion at all and I prefer to wear t-shirts and shorts as much as possible. However, now that I’ve learned how important fitment is the appearance of dress clothes/suits and started buying accordingly, I actually don’t mind dressing up more often. I’ve learned a lot in the past five years or so, and it comes up often enough that I figure it’s worth putting most of the things I’ve learned in a blog post for easy sharing/access. Main Points Off-the-rack clothing is made to fit people with average proportions. People who lift generally don’t have average proportions. Better fitting clothing will look better than more expensive clothing. […]

Jan 012015
 

It’s really pretty simple. I’m not suggesting that you become a full blown contrarian masquerading as a skeptic that thinks everything is bullshit (*looks around sheepishly*). Just stop accepting everything as fact without stopping to ask yourself “is this true?” What does this entail? Pause for five seconds before you click that share button. Ask yourself: “Are there really spiders under toilet seats?” “Can drinking water REALLY cure cancer?” “Are these all the facts?” “Is this person who claims to be looking out for my interest actually looking out for my interest, or their own?” “Might the purpose behind this story actually be to out suckers like me who blindly share […]

 Posted by at 11:29 pm
Jul 022014
 

Instead of forcing everyone to go read the initial post for anything that I forgot to put in there, I’ll just post a bunch of follow ups. The whole religious freedoms vs. reproductive rights isn’t really a thing like everyone thinks it is. This seems to be a pretty big rallying cry for a lot of people, but it’s really just that, a rallying cry. There are plenty of protections for, say, procreation. See, for example, forced sterilizations/eugenics. However, this decision is not a reproductive rights issue, it’s a “who pays for prescription drugs” issue. No one is “telling women when they can and cannot get pregnant.” It’s simply a […]

 Posted by at 8:19 am
Jul 012014
 

Another term, another batch of cases that get everyone’s panties in a goddamn bunch. And, as usual, a bunch of people want to comment on the opinion without actually reading it or doing the necessary legwork to have anything resembling a clue about what is actually going on. I’m going to briefly address what is actually said in Burwell (majority opinion only, because “briefly”). Everything will be paraphrased and based on a single reading of the opinion. So, if I make a mistake, let me know. If I don’t address a concern you have, comment, and I’ll see if I have the time. First, however, I highly recommend you go […]

 Posted by at 11:16 pm
Dec 202013
 

Patent law is rife with use of the word “said” in places where “the” would be just as appropriate. While I’m not an expert at patent law or English, I do know that there’s very little reason to ever use “said” in place of “the” unless it’s customary or you want to be pretentious.1 However, after nearly a year and a half of working with patents, I have finally come across a scenario in which using “said” serves a purpose by increasing clarity (technically). So, if you want to use “said” instead of “the” in normal conversation, but can’t come up with an excuse when someone tells you you’re a […]

 Posted by at 5:29 pm
Aug 122013
 

View the introduction/table of contents for this series of posts here. Ingredient-Composition Error In this first post, we’ll be introduced to the article that contains the first set of examples that I’ll pull from. It is Mio Water Flavoring: Another Ploy to Sicken America. Let’s ignore the title of the article itself, which I can use as fodder for another article on Occam’s Razor. No telling when that will happen, so you have plenty of time to ponder the topic. Go ahead and take a moment to read the article. It’s a useful example to start with because it’s fairly short, but provides a great source for some of the most […]

Aug 102013
 

Table of Contents Introduction Common Reasoning Errors #1: Ingredient-Composition Error Introduction I tend to be quite opinionated, love to argue, and have an insatiable urge to rid the world of bullshit. The end result of all of this that I tend to argue a lot on the Internet. However, I’ve started trying to avoid that, because it ends up being time consuming and not entirely satisfying because of the amazing amount of willpower that most people have when it comes to being, and remaining, wrong. As much as I avoid putting myself in such situations, it still happens regularly, thanks to the very nature of the Internet. One thing I […]

Jun 262012
 

The Supreme Court happens to be in the process of getting the last of their opinions out before they go on a break. That means it’s time for me to hear every opinionated person say “Thank God they got that right!” or “OMG THEY TOTALLY GOT IT WRONG!” This period is also known as “Blake becomes a further recluse so he doesn’t yell at people in public time”. I’m not trying to highlight the people who go around saying the Supreme Court is wrong, it’s just that they are, in fact, much more empathic. But that does not increase or decrease the applicability of this blog to a person who […]

 Posted by at 1:00 am