Paul's Perambulations

February 27, 2009

Musings

Filed under: General — admin @ 11:06 am

Re the financial hysteria: The real measure of our wealth is how much we’d be worth if we lost all our money.

 This year the world’s largest cruise ship will be launched, a 220,000-ton behemoth for more than 6000 passengers.  Why?

 The other day Fran and I got into a debate about cosmology, which became particularly heated over the topic of  whether we were talking about the “observable universe” or simply the “universe.”   Google that distinction if you care to.  So very “us.”  I forget how it ended finally (certainly not resolved, but that’s not the point).  I do love her so.

 Some of the following comes from an online debate on the question: Why does the freest nation in the world, the United States, have the highest rate of incarceration (about 1 out of 100) in the world, compared to say Sweden (more like 1 out of 1500)? The discussants noted that it is uncertain if the U.S. can rightly claim the title of  “freest” and in any case the rate of incarceration does not necessarily indicate the degree of general freedom. Freedom can be only be determined by the limits of your body, the comparative strength of those who oppose you, and your willingness to accept the consequences of your actions.  One conception is that a nation will be freest when citizens are willing to, and frequently do, commit acts deemed illegal by government.  In that case, the U.S. could outrank Sweden, whose citizens might be more restricted by their obedience to law than Americans are restricted by the threat of the bars of a jail cell.

1 Comment »

  1. I didn’t know where to put this “musing” re relationships and my first marriage, so have tucked it in as a Comment here:
    Fran and I love camping and backpacking. But there is much more to it than just that, for my former wife also enjoyed hiking and the outdoors, at least for the first years of our marriage. In our most recent camping trip we needed to regularly do tick checks and remove same. This sort of thing took a very different form in my first relationship, as the following description demonstrates. Very (very) early in that relationship, I suggested we go for a hike in the woods. On our return, Diane discovered a tick on her ankle. She became extremely upset, tore off all her clothes, and told me to do a tick check. I readily complied and saved her. Am I hero for this, or a villain for suggesting a hike, or both? Was this behavior sexually uninhibited or simply childish? There’s more here than meets the eye. This could be considered a primal story of that relationship.

    Comment by admin — June 22, 2010 @ 5:15 pm

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