We cannot ignore what we don’t know

Too often I see this quoted.

“Per laws of aerodynamics, the “bumble bee” cannot fly. Its body weight is not the right proportion to its wingspan. Ignoring these laws of science, the bee flies anyway.”

It is one of those seemingly profound statements that is actually devoid of the slightest shred of sense or meaning.
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Hans Rosling: 200 Years that Changed the World

I am pretty convinced that one can learn practically all subjects from easily accessible content available for free on the web. This summer I am teaching a development economics course at University of California at Berkeley, Econ171. I will use the web extensively.
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The US Empire in Decline

R Vaidyanathan has an interesting piece in expressbuzz cryptically titled “The Lost Horizon of the Emperors.” He takes a very big picture view of what’s happening around the world. Big picture painted rather randomly. He starts off with USA’s decline and quickly moves to India and Pakistan. Regarding the decline of the US, he write, “US is going the banana republic way what with a national debt of more than $10 trillion, which is more than 80 per cent of its national income.”
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