Fifty Shades of Blue
In the interests of accurate reporting, your intrepid and difficult-to-disgust columnist immersed himself in both Book 1 of the Fifty Shades trilogy and the porn website, to see if he could apprehend their charms.
POSTED — February 21, 2015 — Column, Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung
The Guardian Panel on the Piketty Phenomenon
Economists: … their public arguments have an incestuous yet masturbatory quality that is exhausting to follow. The only field more self-confidently but just as regularly wrong as economics is nutrition, whose recommendations to shun butter/margarine or red meat/carbohydrates regularly reverse themselves.
POSTED — September 23, 2014 — In The Press
Let X be the Unknown: The Miracle of Algebra
As recollected from a Walt Kelly Pogo Cartoon in the NY Post in the early 1970s. Somewhere I have the original cartoon, which I will scan and post once I find it.
POSTED — December 23, 2014 — Miscellany
Marriage Times Three
Saving the institution of marriage
POSTED — October 22, 2014 — Miscellany
Make the Jury Fit the Crime
Sexual and academic misconduct.
POSTED — September 11, 2014 — Opinions
A Map of Spinoza’s Passions
The Derivative Relations Between the Emotions and Pain, Pleasure, and Desire
Formulated by Spinoza, Graphed by Me.
POSTED — July 14, 2014 — Photos
The biggest heist in plain sight and the story of money’s stolen respect
One day money became vaporous
POSTED — June 29, 2014 — In The Press
Things Ain’t What They Used To Be
Remarks delivered as part of a panel at the Columbia Conference on Systemic Risk, June 26, 2014.
On money: Leeson’s strategy, for all the glamor of trillion dollar losses, wasn’t very different from the cleaning lady of a man I know. She came weekly and always drank a little of his vodka while he was out. Then she filled the depleted bottle with water to the previous level.
On advertising: Franz Kafka once wrote: “I do not read advertisements. I would spend all of my time wanting things.”
On universities: Where I grew up universities educated you and trained you for life, and the point of academic tenure was to liberate you from the obligation to raise money, to allow you to follow your interests where they led. Now it’s a different story.
POSTED — June 28, 2014 — Opinions
Incredibly clever lyrics and rhymes.
Can you capture them in sign language?
POSTED — June 10, 2014 — Opinions
Meetings with Remarkable Women
“I don’t know either of you, really,” said the Silk Woman after a drink, a cigarette and some mutual explanations of background and reason for travel. “But here we are and actually that’s good. We’ll never meet again, most likely. So let me tell you something.
POSTED — June 7, 2014 — Fiction
Early Intimations of Mortality
A closed to door to a darkened room.
POSTED — May 28, 2014 — Miscellany
In the Beginthing
Intuition: a sudden temporary disappearance of the boundary between Inside and Outside.
POSTED — May 25, 2014 — Miscellany
What Makes Something Disgusting
Going In and Coming Out
POSTED — May 14, 2014 — Opinions
Mach 2: Mach’s Principle Extended
In isolation, a single particle in an otherwise empty universe would have no mass.
In isolation, a single person would have no self-consiousness.
POSTED — April 20, 2014 — Opinions
Speech at Commencement 2014 to Berkeley MSE Grads
We can use our intuition, our scientific knowledge and our pedagogical skills to paint a picture of how think qualitatively, and then, within limits, quantitatively, about the world of human affairs, and in so doing, have an impact on how other people think.
POSTED — April 19, 2014 — Lectures