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18 July 2008

Dog Meat ‘Debate’ Heats Up?


Seoul City is conducting sanitation inspections of dog meat restaurants, leading to fears in some circles that the inspections represent a first step in the eventual legalization of dog meat.

Of course, long-time readers of this blog know my position on the matter — you can have my bowl of dog meat soup when you pry it from my cold, dead fingers.

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The Marmot's Hole 7/17/08 9:40 PM Robert Koehler Korean Culture South Korea Comments

15 July 2008

Algo para evadirse


al_norte.jpg

Soporta la doble jornada, una como secretaria y la otra como madre y ama de casa, gracias a unas pastillas de diazepán que esconde en su cartera. Ningún médico se la ha recetado, pero ella misma encontró el camino hacia la paz probando varios fármacos. Sólo bajo el efecto producido por una dosis -cada vez más alta- de la pequeña píldora, sobrelleva las reuniones del Partido, las colas para la comida y las exigencias alimentarias de su familia.

Comenzó por comprárs....

Generación Y 7/15/08 2:11 AM Yoani Sanchez Generación Y Comments

The Price Of Life


The EPA recently reduced the value of a statistical life by 11%. Your life is now only worth $6.9M to that government agency. This number is used in cost/benefit analysis to determine how many lives would need to be saved in order to justify the cost of a regulation. So now, with the lower value, more people would need to be at risk of death in order for a change be deemed cost-effective.

What I find disturbing is the method used to calculate it:

The EPA figure is not based on people's earning capacity, or their potential contributions to society, or how much they are loved and needed by their friends and family -- some of the factors used in insurance claims and wrongful-death lawsuits.
Instead, economists calculate the value based on what people are willing to pay to avoid certain risks, and on how much extra employers pay their workers to take on additional risks. Most of the data is drawn from payroll statistics; some comes from opinion surveys.

So basically the Bush administration's anti-regulation folks are being rewarded for having made the economy go down the shitter, right? People are so desperate for jobs that they're willing to do even risky ones at low wages and, because of that, the companies providing the risky jobs at low wages get to avoid regulations?

Unfogged 7/14/08 8:11 AM Becks

13 July 2008

Understanding the Yugen Element In the Beauty of Japanese Arts & Crafts


When Westerners first began to visit Japan in the mid-1500s they were struck by the refined beauty and quality of the country's arts and crafts. It was a kind of beauty and quality that they had never seen before.

This special quality of Japanese things was so commonplace that the Japanese themselves did not consider it unusual. Everything they made, including simple household utensils, had the same quality.

Quoting from my book The Elements of Japanese Design:

Yugen beauty referred to a type of attractiveness ­ beneath the surface of the material but in delicate harmony with it ­ that registers on the conscious as well as the subconscious of the viewer. It radiates a kind of spiritual essence.

For a definitive look at the Japanese view and creation of yugen beauty, see Elements of Japanese Design - Key Terms for Understanding & Using Japan's Classic Wabi-Sabi-Shibui Concepts.

Japundit 7/10/08 11:00 AM Boye Lafayette De Mente Art Beauty Books Japan Japanese History Only In Japan Comments

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