Someday I'm Gonna Be Happy

… but I don't know when just now:

  • The University Near Here came in at number 58 on Senator Tom Coburn's list of this year's top 100 money-wasting activities of Your Federal Government. It refers to a $700K grant to study and model greenhouse gas emissions from organic dairies. Specifically, from the cows therein.

    The Granite Geek is pissed, refusing even to link to the Union Leader story. I'm more in agreement with Grant Bosse:

    Any diversion of taxpayer money can always be justified by arguing that it helps someone. But why should taxpayers foot the bill to subsidize organic farmers? Other than to help politicians curry favor with the beneficiaries? This subsidy, of limited and questionable value, comes at the expense of traditional dairy farmers. And firemen. And teachers. And software billionaires. Picking winners and losers in the marketplace is not a proper function of government; even when it is done for the noble purpose of studying cow farts.
    And, no, this was not a cheap trick to get "farts" into my blog.

    Well, not entirely. Also, as Coburn quotes one of our guys saying, "[c]ows emit most of their methane through belching, only a small fraction from flatulence." So there.

    If you're ever in the UNH area, please feel free to pass by the research farm and sniff their dairy air.

  • Sorry, that was a pun. The people responsible have been sacked.

  • I'm sad to hear of the passing of Steve Landesberg. Although for a moment I thought we'd lost Steve Landsburg. He's still around.

  • Megan McArdle notes that the "Gee-Whiz Graph" lives today, well after it was eviscerated in Chapter 5 of How to Lie with Statistics.

    HtLwS was first published in 1954, which makes it almost older than I am.

  • I (like many) think the FCC should just go away, but even if you disagree, you might want to read Jim Harper on why regulation of the Internet by the FCC is a bad idea.

    This is also a good time to remember that the FCC is our national censor. The U.S. government's censorious reaction to l'affaire WikiLeaks should serve as counsel to people who would subject Internet service providers to even greater federal regulation. Regulated ISPs will be more compliant with government speech controls.


Last Modified 2012-09-29 6:42 AM EST