Category Archives: Reddit

Merry Christmas, even to protectionists

Dear Jason:

Assuming you are real (I’m guessing not), I wish you a Merry Christmas, even though your economic views are about as old and debunked as Santa himself.


P.S.- Nikhil, bringing back Christopher Hitchens would be awesome.


h/t reddit

A Very Reddit Engagement

Tonight, I helped my fellow redditor John by photographing his very thoughtful surprise engagement here in Washington.

In addition to sending him the raw photo files, I added some text and edited a few for him. I left him an Easter egg in two of them. (I sent two of each, one without the Easter egg because I’m a nice guy.)

Here’s one of them. See if you can find it:

John and Nirmita

Congratulations to John and Nirmita!

Hooray internets! John — who lived in D.C. for a short while — was able to secure a photographer (me) and a cellist via the internets.

Bomblecast #18

Thanks for dropping by for episode 18 of the bomblecast. If you like reddit and we’re not reddit friends, make sure you add me. I’m still figuring out this whole reddit thing, so shoot me a message with your user name and I’ll add you back.

Links from today’s episode:

Here’s episode 18 of the Bomblecast:

Maths are important

One constant cry among education lobbyists in Washington is that we need to “do something” about STEM education. If you’re not familiar with the term STEM, it stands for Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics.

I doubt many of us can claim proficiency in all STEM areas; I certainly can’t. However, when some folks share stories, I do doubt their math and economic competency.

Take for example this headline I saw on reddit:

This isn’t bad headline writing, as far as attracting readers is concerned. But, economically and mathematically, it is bad headline writing.

Here’s why:

  • The poster has no idea what is in the contracts of the “ousted” executives. It’s not like this bank said, “You’ve done a terrible job, and we’re firing you, but here’s a few million on the way out. Enjoy retirement.” Odds are their contracts stipulated the terms of their compensation in the event they were ousted.
  • Comparing 11,000 jobs to $14 million in bonuses may seem like a great idea at first to get traffic; that is, until you think about it. (Unless you’re trying to attract readers who won’t.)
  • How many employees could you employ with $14 million? Well, 11,000! If you paid them $1,272.72 a year.
  • Put another way, this could pay 11,000 people to work for minimum wage for about 4 weeks. 11,000 tellers for about 2.7 weeks, it could pay for 343 personal bankers for a year, or 206 branch managers. (This does not include fringe benefits, healthcare, etc.)

In short, comparing 11,000 employees to a $14 million total shows a disturbing lack of economic and mathematical knowledge.