Monthly Archives: January 2013

Why Are Free Cities Good for Hondurans?

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If one does a Twitter search for #CMenHondurasNO one will find many tweets against free cities in Honduras and the fact that Anonymous groups in Latin America have done cyber attacks against Honduran government websites in protest. Why is this the case? One recent article in the Freeman, No Exit: Are Honduran Free Cities DOA?, stated some possible reasons. Paul Romer, who helped popularize the idea of charter cities (and can be seen in the video below), apparently “failed to appreciate the powerful emotions that nationalism can stir up, especially among people who, like the Hondurans, have suffered colonial rule.”

So, I have been pondering what I would tell a Honduran who is concerned about how a free city might encroach upon their national sovereignty.

First, I would explain that Romer’s proposal is only one of many; his happened to involve the host country allowing a first-world third party, such as Canada, “to help govern a portion of its territory.” Others’ proposals, such as Michael Strong’s, did not involve foreign governments and, as such, might be preferable.

Second, what’s being proposed isn’t a land-grab of any sort. It is setting up an uninhabited land area as a zone that will have it’s own policing and legal structure. Proposals have had stipulations requiring that 90% of the jobs in these zones must go to Hondurans; therefore, these cities would still be Honduran in that sense, which is the most important one.

Third, if these cities are allowed to be established, they will be the envy of the earth. Hondurans who choose to move to them will have opportunities found nowhere else in Latin America. There is an undeniable correlation between free markets and economic prosperity.

Fourth, consider the potential benefits to the worst potential outcome.  The possible gains include having one of the highest economic growth rates in the world and vastly reducing poverty in Honduras. The worst potential outcome is that foreigner’s investments in land development go bad and they leave.

I would urge people to look into the ideas behind the free cities: that legal systems are one of the main determinants of economic prosperity. There is so much to gain from it. The reason it’s being proposed in Honduras is not because people want to take it over; it’s because they can’t create a free city in their native lands. They want to have freedoms that they are kept from having elsewhere.

Michael Strong on free cities:

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Sheriff Gary Raney Doesn’t Understand the Constitution

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Sheriff Gary Raney

Sheriff Gary Raney

On Friday in the Idaho Statesman, Ada County Sheriff Gary Raney made a statement that was printed in the Opinion section. It was called, “I uphold all of the Constitution, not just part of it.”

It’s a bit hard to digest. Let me count the ways.
“Very few occupations include the special pride that comes with the trust inherent in an oath of office, but mine does.”
Hmm…not sure what he means here by “trust inherent.” Do you inherently trust anyone, just because he or she has taken an oath of office? In my view, if history is any guide, being an elected official suggests it is more likely that one is less trustworthy.
 I swore to work within our system of law and justice to fairly enforce what you, through your elected representatives in the Legislature and Congress, have decided should be the law of our land. Those laws are set upon a foundation of checks and balances, embodied in the separation of powers between the legislative, executive and judicial branches of government.
When we forsake the law or disregard those checks and balances, we take the first step down the path towards anarchy.
Nobody I have voted for has ever won an election. Is it still the case that I, through elected “representatives”, have decided should be the law of the land? What if I did actually vote for them? Does that mean I implicitly agree to anything they might do? Gerard Casey dispels this myth of “elected representative.” Political representation is so much less representative than any other relationship deemed “representative,” so much so that to call it such is ridiculous. And he can pay all the lip service he desires to “checks and balances” but he makes a mockery of them by what he says below.
Many others have indulged that pressure and now we see Oregon sheriffs, Wyoming legislators and others making hollow promises to protect you from the intrusions of the federal government. Let me respectfully remind you that we are the federal government, the state government and the local government.
I’m not sure what he means by “we” but I assume he is talking about all of us. I have previously written about this fallacious idea that “we are the state.” It is not the case that anyone comes upon this idea independently. It has to be drilled into us through constant propaganda, like what the Sheriff is providing here. Everything the government does is by force. It is patently absurd that “we” have to elect “ourselves” to force us to do things we would rather not.
I did not swear to uphold just part of the Constitution. Our Constitution includes the right to keep and bear arms, but it also includes the “supremacy clause” that says that every state shall abide by the laws passed by our Congress.
Raney seems to have forgotten (if he indeed has ever known it) the most important clause of the Supremacy Clause, which states that the laws of the United States have to be made in pursuance of the Constitution. Obviously federal laws that infringe on constitutional rights are NOT made in pursuance of it.

So, despite the fact that I personally oppose some of the gun control measures currently under consideration, my oath requires me to uphold the laws that are passed by our federal and state representatives.

When we disagree with those laws, the checks and balances built into our government point us toward the proper remedy: changing the laws or challenging them in the judicial branch. As to whether or not the president has the power to issue executive orders limiting our Constitutional rights, that is another matter to be decided by the Supreme Court, not by 44 different sheriffs in Idaho.

For all his talk about how importantly he holds his oath to the Constitution, it seems like he has little understanding of it. The US Constitution lists the powers of the Congress in Article I, Section 8. Furthermore, the Bill of Rights spells out certain things which the federal government is prohibited from doing (though, when drafted, it was argued that they were unnecessary since Article I, Section 8 didn’t give Congress the power to make laws regarding the freedom of speech, press, etc.). If Congress were to make laws contradictory to these restrictions, they are to be null and void. Obviously, laws can’t declare themselves to be null and void, hence the attempt to construct checks and balances. Checks and balances are supposed to be endogenous to the system of government. Obviously, Raney’s first proposed method doesn’t meet this criteria. What is the point of even having constitutional restrictions if Congress can pass any law it desires and the way to change it is to get that Congress to repeal such a law? Neither does the second. I don’t know many people who have the expertise or means to successfully challenge laws before the federal courts. Either way, one has to beg the federal government to follow the Constitution. Does Raney really believe that this is the best the Framers could come up with? In addition, he outright acknowledges that the president’s executive orders limit Constitutional rights. What is the point of constitutional rights if they can be violated at will? As well, the legislative power is to rest with the Congress, not the Executive, and the Constitution does not say, “And the Supreme Court will decide what is constitutional even if federal law contradicts this Constitution.”

Hollow promises and threats will only divert people from doing the right thing — honoring the truth and being involved in a process whereby our rights and liberties are protected by a respect of the law, not by rhetoric.

If any rhetoric is hollow, it is what is written above by Sheriff Raney. What does respect of the law mean if the federal government can repeal it at any time? What is the point of even having state governments if they are simply to be like provinces ultimately run by the federal government? What is the point of electing a sheriff if he does only what the federal government wants him to, rather than what the people who elected want? When it comes down to it, what Sheriff Raney is saying totally rejects the idea of self-governance: he says people in individual counties cannot decide how they want to live; 9 people in black robes who live over a thousand miles away get to do that for them and 300 million other people.

He isn’t upholding the Constitution; he is upholding the federal government.

How to Make the Government Angry

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There are actually plenty of ways to do this, but the one we are going to focus on today is the act of simply telling the truth about it. This is what happened to the rating agency Egan-Jones, who did the proper thing and downgraded their rating of US government debt. Why is this proper?

Well, first thing is that there has been no entity in the history of the world with a greater debt than the US government. Now, this might no be so bad if the US had the capacity to pay it, but the debt has passed 100% of GDP and is being increased every year. The unfunded liabilities of Medicare alone are greater than the Gross World Product, meaning that all the wealth in the world produced in a year would not be enough to pay for Medicare’s promises (yet if one points this out, he or she will be accused of hating old people and wanting them to die in the street). Massive changes have to be made, but won’t be. Thus, the only way this debt will be “paid back” is through the printing press, which means it won’t be paid back at all and the USD will be destroyed in the process.

Hence, I think it would be irresponsible to do anything BUT lower the US government’s debt rating. But don’t expect to go unnoticed. According to Simon Black, Egan-Jones has been banned from rating US government debt for the next 18 months. Black compares the actions of the US government to those of Emperor Diocletian. But we can go even further back. Luke 3:19-20 states:

But when John rebuked Herod the tetrarch because of Herodias, his brother’s wife, and all the other evil things he had done, Herod added this to them all: He locked John up in prison. 

Obviously, this is not a new tactic of governments, yet so many people believe their government to be just, virtuous, and so on. Let us cast aside this silly notion.

So, go ahead and say what you see. The emperor has no clothes.

“Truth is treason in the empire of lies.” – George Orwell

Why Economics Is Like a Horror Movie

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It seems that no matter what is done, no matter how many articles are written, how many books are published, how many lectures are given…some economic fallacies never die. They keep coming back, every time scarier than the last. And so it did today, right on the top of the front page of the Idaho Statesman (or Statist-man). It has the fearful title of “Millions of jobs lost – forever“. And what is the culprit? The Great Recession and technology, of course, but mostly technology.

Here are some choice excerpts:

Year after year, the software that runs computers and an array of other machines and devices becomes more sophisticated and powerful and capable of doing more efficiently tasks that humans have always done. For decades, science fiction warned of a future when we would be architects of our own obsolescence, replaced by our machines; an Associated Press analysis finds that the future has arrived.

“It doesn’t have political appeal to say the reason we have a problem is we’re so successful in technology,” says Joseph Stiglitz, a Nobel Prize-winning economist at Columbia University. “There’s no enemy there.”

Unless you count family and friends and the person staring at you in the mirror. The uncomfortable truth is technology is killing jobs with the help of ordinary consumers by enabling them to quickly do tasks that workers used to do full time, for salaries.

Use a self-checkout lane at the supermarket or drugstore? A worker behind a cash register used to do that.

Buy clothes without visiting a store? You’ve taken work from a salesman.

Click “accept” in an email invitation to attend a meeting? You’ve pushed an office assistant closer to unemployment.

Book your vacation using an online program? You’ve helped lay off a travel agent.

I could just leave this to Henry Hazlitt, who destroyed this and many other economic fallacies in his 1946 classic, Economics in One Lesson (the relevant chapter here is Ch.7, The Curse of Machinery). I would urge everyone to check out his book if they want to gain a basic understanding of economic reasoning.

Hazlitt does not exaggerate when he uses the term “technophobe” as made clear by the writers of this article. Indeed, they say we are now in a dystopian future where we are “replaced by our machines.” Not only that, but the article is saying the YOU, the reader, are the enemy! You’ve taken work from a salesman! You are responsible for the unemployment of an office assistant! You’ve helped lay off a travel agent!

Hazlitt details numerous examples in history where people feared unemployment as a result of labor-saving devices and yet employment in those industries increased. But perhaps even more important, he recognizes that no number of appeals to history will suffice unless we understand why it was the case, “for statistics and facts are useless in economics unless accompanied by a basic deductive understanding of the facts…” (Indeed, Hazlitt anticipates the authors’ inclusion of the rebuttal that “this time is different.”) This is why logic is so important. If the authors of this article thought through the implications of their statements, they would find it would only result in absurdity.

To see why, let’s take their logic further for them. If you buy clothes at all, it is likely that the materials they are made of were harvested by large farm machinery, instead of a laborer with a hoe (which is itself a labor-saving device over using one’s hands), that they were made  with the aid of a machine, instead of full manual labor, and were transported by truck, instead of by wagon (or even better yet, a band of walking carriers since a wagon is also a labor-saving device). Look at all the people you have put out of work, you fiend! Literally, all acts that do something more efficient are to be seen with disdain, if Bernard Condon and Paul Wiseman are to be taken seriously.

It should be quite easy to recognize that technology and capital equipment make labor more productive, which makes goods and services cheaper and raises our standards of living.

What is interesting is that Condon and Wiseman almost stray near a better explanation of part of the unemployment problem, but then pass by it obliviously. Notice how they talk about small business being an engine of job creation:

Historically, new companies and new industries have been the incubator of new jobs. Start-up companies no more than five years old are big sources of new jobs in developed economies. In the U.S., they accounted for 99 percent of new private sector jobs in 2005, according to a study by the University of Maryland’s John Haltiwanger and two other economists.

But even these companies are hiring fewer people. The average new business employed 4.7 workers when it opened its doors in 2011, down from 7.6 in the 1990s, according to a Labor Department study released last March.

And then they have this:

Entrepreneur Andrew Schrage started the financial advice website Money Crashers in 2009 with a partner and one freelance writer. The bare-bones start-up was only possible, Schrage says, because of technology that allowed the company to get online help with accounting and payroll and other support functions without hiring staff.

“Had I not had access to cloud computing and outsourcing, I estimate that I would have needed 5-10 employees to begin this venture,” Schrage says. “I doubt I would have been able to launch my business.”

Hmm…so entrepreneurs are creating businesses with the help of technology (that they claim they wouldn’t be able to do without) and are hiring fewer employees in doing so (because they wouldn’t have been able to launch with such an expense). It would seem to be the case that the costs of employing people has increased. And why? Maybe it’s because of increases in payroll taxes, regulations requiring employers to provide health insurance, those types of things. Obviously they are not costless. Governments do many things that increase the cost of hiring employees.

Above all, I think we need to remember the following lesson: jobs are a means, not ends in themselves. We don’t work for the sake of work, we work to produce goods and services so that we can consume them. If we can produce the same amount of goods with less work, or more goods with the same amount of work, or more goods with less work, then we have gained. This is economic progress. This is why we don’t have to work 7 days a week anymore to make a living. Let us finally kill this fallacy of the curse of technology.

 

LA Times’ Alana Semuels Has No Business Writing about Economics

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Alana Semuels, out of her depth

I’m beginning to think that it’s an almost guaranteed mistake and waste of time to read mainstream newspapers if one wishes to get an understanding of the world. The only understanding I seem to get is how ignorant people are of economics and not-so-common sense. For my example of the day, I point to Alana Semuels’ article regarding flu shots.

Here is the first sentence (taken from the local paper, which is slightly different from the online version):

 Among the long list of reasons the fearful give for reasons they’re not getting a flu shot (hatred of needles, skepticism about vaccines, laziness), there’s one that relates more closely to economics: It’s not free.

First of all (and maybe I don’t merit the ability to criticize this), this sentence contains a bad choice of words: “Among the long list of reasons the fearful give for reasons…”? If brevity is the soul of wit, this sentence surely doesn’t demonstrate wit. I usually hate to use the same word more than once in a sentence if it’s not necessary. I’m surprised that an award winner in journalism would have such a opening for an article.

But let us set aside the less relevant and get more to the point. Economics is not solely about money. Fear of needles is indeed a real cost; it’s not unimaginable that one could have such a fear of needles that he would be willing to bear the risk of getting the flu in order to avoid getting the shot. Such calculations are indeed economic, and yet money is not part of the equation. So I hope Ms. Semuels can take this as a lesson: hatred of needs, skepticism about vaccines, laziness, etc. are all costs that go into economic decision making, no less so than monetary costs. It’s all closely related to economics.

So why aren’t they free or nearly free? After all, they’ve been around for a while, and there’s a lot of demand. Isn’t it about time flu shots cost the same as, say, generic Tylenol?

I’m not sure if I’m completely missing her logic here, but the fact that some product has been around for a while and that there is a lot of demand for it does not lead to it being free or nearly free. Indeed, don’t most people recognize that the law of demand states that, all other things being equal, greater demand is associated with higher prices?

The reason for its cost is that the process of manufacturing and distributing the flu shot is a huge headache…the handful of pharmaceutical companies that make the vaccine have to estimate how many doses to make. Make too many, and they’ll have to throw away a bunch if people don’t get the flu shot; make too few, and they’ll cause a panic about vaccine shortages…And there are no regulations saying people have to get flu vaccines, meaning it’s difficult for companies to estimate how many they should make.

And just how does this make vaccine distribution any different from just about any other product? No manufacturer wants to produce so much that he or she sells at a loss. Neither do they want to produce less than what would maximize their profit. But it’s the last sentence that really gets me. I think only one who has little or no understanding of economics would make it. There are relatively few products or services that people are forced by government to buy: police “protection”, fire departments, roads, schools, health insurance, etc. Entrepreneurs have to make educated guesses and are rewarded for being correct and making efficient uses of resources. Semuels seems to have this notion that markets require some top-down approach, that there is no way private sellers and buyers could possibly manage to meet their needs without government oversight, or at least not nearly as well. And yet all one has to do is open her eyes and LOOK to see that this is not the case in the real world.

“It can be a risky business,” Allen said. “They have to make a decision on the number of doses to make many, many months before the flu season actually happens,” he said.

Allen, who is a spokesman for the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention, follows Semuels in making a quite useless observation, in the sense that it does not help distinguish what makes manufacturing vaccines unique. Austrian economists put a large emphasis on the time it takes for something to be produced when we go from building capital equipment (such as machinery) all the way down to selling the product that such equipment creates. Anyone investing in capital has to make a prediction on the number of widgets they think will be demanded many months, or even years, in the future before they start. Vaccine producers are in no way unique in this regard.

This year, companies produced about 145 million doses, he said. Only about 129 million have been distributed. Last year, companies lost even more on the flu vaccine because it was such a light flu season and fewer people decided to get the shot…Still, there might be an economics argument for giving away the vaccine for free, even if it is already cheap. The province of Ontario, in Canada, tried that in 2000 and found that giving away the vaccine for free reduced influenza cases by 61% and decreased the cost of healthcare services by 52%, a study shows

This argument is more from paternalism than from economics. If the vaccine is so cheap, and the benefits so enormous, how do they explain the fact that many people forgo it? The cited study states that 500,000 individuals die every year from influenza. Why wouldn’t people pay $10 to $16 to prevent that? I don’t know. What I can say is that I have never received a flu shot and have never gotten the flu, even though I’ve only resided in states that border Canada.

I can also say that Ms. Semuels is very imprecise in how she presents the study. The relevant text from the study states that

In Ontario, 22,457 cases of influenza were observed on average per season after the introduction of the universal immunization program. If TIIP had been continued, the expected average number of cases per season was estimated to be 56,998. UIIP therefore prevented 34,541 influenza cases (61% of all cases each season). 

Ontario’s UIIP also prevented 111 deaths, a 28% reduction in mortality. This resulted in a projected 1,134 QALYs gained in total or 0.09 quality-adjusted life days per person vaccinated. Approximately half of all health gains (QALYs) were associated with a reduction of influenza mortality; the other half was associated with reduction in influenza-related morbidity.

The program costs of UIIP are high, approximately double that of a targeted program ($40 million versus $20 million). However, UIIP was estimated to prevent 786 influenza-related hospitalizations, 7,745 influenza-related ED visits, and 30,306 office visits per season. Preventing influenza cases effectively reduced influenza-related health care costs by 52%, saving the health care system approximately $7.8 million per season, so that the net cost of the UIIP program is $12.2 million, or $2.60 per person vaccinated.

The first part is baffling to me is that the report starts off in its introduction with, “Influenza vaccines are generally safe and effective.” Perhaps I’m quite ignorant of medicine, but 22,457 cases with universal immunization seems like a large number. Also, the estimated savings are not from a free market of vaccinations where people choose for themselves, but from another government program of targeted vaccinations. The study also acknowledges that:

A UIIP may be an appealing intervention in high-income jurisdictions with comparable demographic characteristics (age distribution, risk profile, density) where influenza transmission can be expected to be reasonably similar to the population analyzed. A health care system similar to Ontario’s (i.e., health care systems with one major payer), where the costs of the immunization program and the costs of treating influenza cases are both in the payer’s budget, will enable the universal program costs to be partly offset by savings in health care cost.

So there you go. At best, Ontario found a government policy that was less efficient than another government policy. Yippee. We also have more arguments for why the government should be able to force what it wants into your bloodstream.

But let us not forget that freedom works. People can take care of themselves without a nanny state telling them to get their shots and forcing them to pay for it, whether they like it or not.

The Non-Mutual Inclusiveness of Economic Knowledge and Business Savvy

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I want to learn how to work remotely (ideally as an entrepreneur, but not required at this point. Any recommended resources in learning how to do that would be much appreciated). In pursuit of this goal, I have been reading a book by Tiomthy Ferriss called The 4-Hour Workweek.

My goal today is to describe a letter that was written to Mr. Ferriss and published in the updated version of the book. This letter was written by a physician who successfully established himself with a business he could work on remotely and travel as he pleased. However, I was disappointed that such a learned person could so woefully understand economic logic. Observe:

I had traveled extensively throughout the United States and some parts of Europe, but I had never experienced South American culture…During my trip, I spent a lot of time speaking to expatriates about how they used their retirement funds and pensions to live the lives of kings there. One thing was evident: Most of the expatriates who attempted to “set up a business” to help fund their lifestyle had failed miserably. I hypothesized that there just wasn’t enough currency (pesos) in the markeplace to really sustain a “gringo”-oriented business. [Emphasis added]

It is too bad the good doctor’s hypothesis fails miserably as well. Wouldn’t it be great if businesses actually became viable if the amount of paper money in circulation was simply increased? Stones really would then be turned to bread. But to ask the question whether wealth is increased by the increase in the amount of money, I think, is to answer it. Just ask the people of Zimbabwe, all of whom nearly became trillionaires overnight.

The doctor is mistaking currency for wealth. South Americans can’t afford to live like gringos if they don’t produce like gringos (or are consistently made poorer by their governments through the theft of taxation and inflation). Sadly, the doctor’s misunderstanding is not due to semantics; his hypothesis had to do with the number of pesos, not their purchasing power.

No doubt this doctor is an intelligent man; thus it is baffling to me that he would form such a hypothesis when simply thinking it through would reveal its flaws.

What is also troubling is that people will often make the mistake of thinking someone who is a successful investor or businessman automatically has good ideas for economic policies. Remember when Warren Buffett had the idea that the US government should force trade to be balanced with every other country? Think about what this would mean at an individual level. An employee will typically have a trade (or current account) surplus with his or her employer: he or she sells labor for money. As well, that employee will typically have a trade deficit with everyone else. But, in sum, his or her trade will be balanced. To keep the analogy going, what Buffett’s proposal would mean at an individual level is that the individual would buy an amount of goods from her employer equal to her salary and either sell labor or goods to her grocer equal to the value of the food she buys. This is what balancing trade with every trade partner would look like. It shouldn’t take too much imagination to see why this would be a dumb policy.

So, anyway, let us strive to be both successful at adding value and being knowledgeable about economics. They are not always the same thing.

First Tuesday in Bangkok

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I accompanied Lea on the train and we stopped at Au Bon Pain. I had a nice egg croissant sandwich. After bidding adeiu at the bus stop, I decided to save a few baht and see how long it would take me to walk back to the apartment. Where we had departed was in the financial district, which has quite a bit of foot traffic at 9 in the morning. So I set off in the direction of the train, thinking this would be my best bet in not getting lost. To set the mood, I started listening to some Roderick Long (the series of lectures can be downloaded here). What a great background to walking Bangkok!

I saw some interesting things. One of the things I’ve noticed about Thailand is that restroom privacy is not a high priority. In fact, my first visit to the bathroom in the airport was greeted by a female janitor. No warning or anything. Very efficient. And as I was walking down this road, listening to Long, I passed a man relieving himself on a bush. I was surprised since this was such a busy street, but sometimes you gotta go.

An interesting sign, pictured to the left, labels the separate police areas. I joked on Facebook that Thailand has competing police agencies. Perhaps they will someday.

When I got to the next station, Ratchamaderi, I realized I had been following the train on the wrong direction. So I kept going.

Eventually I made it to the Central World Mall and had difficulty finding an open entrance. When I did, I found out why. Almost every store was closed. Oh well.

I kept walking, planning to again visit the Siam Paragon Mall, which I had previously visited two days before, only this time having my camera to take pictures (I was sad to find out that the Anime convention was over). But along my way I encountered a man who asked where I was going (the most oft-heard phrase in Thailand). I told him I was going to check out the mall and he told me it was closed. He also offered me a one-time deal on a long tail boat ride to a temple. He also told me he worked for the government, as if that would increase my trust. He wanted to flag down a tuk-tuk and send me on my way. But I couldn’t afford his offer with cash on hand, and told him that Lea would be upset if I did something like this without her. In retrospect, I am glad I didn’t accept his offer since we had problems with tuk-tuks subsequent to this. It’s very interesting how it seems there to be a vast conspiracy among tuk-tuk drivers, restaurant owners, tourist activity people, and guys standing on the street looking for foreigners. Might as well be, since everyone and their mom has a restaurant. One can find some pretty good deals. Just learn to negotiate.

So I continued on my way to the Siam Paragon. Even after 11 AM, much of the mall was still closed. It was puzzling. But I found a place to sit (which was quite difficult to find without having to buy something) and read the continuing adventures of Katniss Everdeen.

After that, I took the SkyTrain back to the apartment. I think I have walked more in Thailand than I did the whole previous year. Sorry that there weren’t more exciting stories to tell about this day, but this is what I remember.

Cop shoots 10-year-old boy with Taser for refusing to clean patrol car — RT

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http://rt.com/usa/news/taser-boy-playground-webb-611/

I suppose sometimes I post things that didn’t exactly happen yesterday. This is one of those times.

The title is pretty explanatory. In my search of the interwebs, I couldn’t find an update beyond the boy’s family filing a lawsuit.

With all the crimes police commit, it’s pretty amazing how much of a pass they get in the court of public opinion. It’s also pretty amazing that such an act only results in a 3-day suspension. What do we do when this becomes normal and isn’t amazing anymore?