I strongly suspect this falls into the “oldie but goodie” I just haven’t seen category, but it’s funny enough that I thought I should share it around.
Lawrence Livermore Laboratories has discovered the heaviest element yet known to science. The new element, Governmentium (Gv), has one neutron, 25 assistant neutrons, 88 deputy neutrons, and 198 assistant deputy neutrons, giving it an atomic mass of 312.
These 312 particles are held together by forces called morons, which are surrounded by vast quantities of lepton-like particles called peons. Since Governmentium has no electrons, it is inert; however, it can be detected, because it impedes every reaction with which it comes into contact. A tiny amount of Governmentium can cause a reaction that
would normally take less than a second, to take from 4 days to 4 years to complete.
Governmentium has a normal half-life of 2- 6 years. It does not decay, but instead undergoes a reorganization in which a portion of the assistant neutrons and deputy neutrons exchange places.
In fact, Governmentium’s mass will actually increase over time, since each reorganization will cause more morons to become neutrons, forming isodopes. This characteristic of moron promotion leads some scientists to believe that Governmentium is formed whenever morons reach a critical concentration. This hypothetical quantity is referred to as critical morass.
When catalyzed with money, Governmentium becomes Administratium, an element that radiates just as much energy as Governmentium since it has half as many peons but twice as many morons.
No, REALLY. Or, failing that, memristors, and fast, please. Huge chunks of the more meaningful parts of what I do are based on the ability to recall either language vocabulary or historical data on the fly, and I can say unequivocally that these things would make me significantly more effective all across the board. The “internet lookup” to which said article refers is not all that different in kind from a grammar-table lookup. Welcome to the Shadowrun sci-fi world of “skillsofts” and uploading your Wheelock’s Latin Grammar. Babelfish is already breaking down tons of barriers with cheap and good-enough basic translation (I’ve carried on some reasonably serious conversations in Polish with an art-historian/tailor in Krakow, for instance, via Poltran.com, and otherwise, my IQ in slavic languages is about the same as my shoe size): this would, in only one possible application, be like taking that and hooking it up to a nuke plant.
Not to mention — along with the basic facts of history, I teach critical thinking. I have no fear of the day we can simply upload every piece of raw data you need to bypass the data-crunching part of a high-school education, and make education all about how to employ those ideas in ways that, at the risk of sounding corny, increase that person’s power and ability to shape their future to their liking.
First the meet with Russia, then the gift-embarrassment with Britain, now Brazil. Not that folks don’t make mistakes: but when they’re made this early and this often, political heads should be all over the floor, and the fact that they’re not screams political incompetence.
If anything has been sorely missing to date in America’s choices in the Middle East and Central Asia, it has been a strategic mind-set that consistently keeps its eyes on the real prize: connecting these isolated regions in a far more broadband fashion to the global economy. Instead of effectively countering the efforts of others (e.g., the radical Salafis, Saudi Arabia’s Wahhabists, Russia’s security services, China’s energy sector) who would fashion such connectivity to their selfish ends, Washington has wasted precious time focusing excessively on transforming the political systems of Iraq and Afghanistan, as though governments somehow birth functioning societies and economies instead of the other way around.(em. mine)
And boy howdy doesn’t that explain right where the Republicans drove themselves into a trench by turning into Wilsonians and economic progressives, too. Thank God Petraeus also seems to “get it” in a way that some of BushCo’s earlier picks didn’t. (Such as Paul, “the tribes don’t count” Bremer, a man who history is going to treat very unkindly)
is that you actually have to BEJohn Galt for it to work. Otherwise, at best you’re an ideologue making a few (potentially accurate) points — at worst, you’re this other creature, known colloquially as “a bum.”