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May 13, 2009

Overnight open thread – “It Feeds on Fear” (genghis)

(One free month’s membership to AoSHQ to the first person who can accurately answer which band sampled that statement on one of their tracks.)

Item #1: Now that we’ve arrived on The New Frontier, Part Two, we’ll probably all need to get a job or something. We can’t just sit around gazing at the Skittle-hued sunsets every night. In the meantime, Popular Mechanics has conjured up a list of Future-Proof Jobs. With any luck, by next year, the HQ will be able to provide online courses in all of these fields, so now would be a good time to start considering which one you’re best suited for.

Seems they left out one obvious profession that’s always future and recession-proof. It’s been around for awhile. In fact, some might say it’s actually the oldest profession. Dean O’-Spades has mentioned that we may offer an Associate degree in that field on something like a “work-study” basis.

Item #2: Got kids? Or more to the point, got lazy sacks o’ shit kids who can’t be bothered to do their homework? Gizmodo may have the perfect solution for you: The Study Ball. It’s a 20 pound ball, chain and shackle with a timer that can be set for up to four hours before it unlocks. Should provide just the right amount of motivation to get Junior to finish off his algebra homework before he’s off to play with the Xbox and/or call Child Protective Services. If that’s insufficient, you’ll be pleased to know that the company who makes this item, Curiosite, is also working on development of the Study Iron Maiden and the Study Rack.

Item #3: And we wrap up with a story from Scandi-land. From ABC (Australia) comes the grim tale of a hapless driver (they still have cars there?) who was fined $143,000 for driving drunk over the distance of 400 meters. Why such a hefty fine you ask?

”Due to the man's wealth, the court in the southern Norwegian county of Aust-Agder handed down a heavier-than-usual sentence, which would normally be equivalent to a month-and-a-half's gross salary for the accused. “The principle of proportionality implies that we should take into account the entire wealth of the person in cases where the defendant is more well off than most other people," a court spokesman said. The 49-year-old man is the heir of a rich shipping family. His wealth totalled 228 million kroner ($46 million) in 2008, when he had a gross annual income of around 752,000 kroner.”

Eh, why not…serves the bastard right for daring to actually have money. However, I’m going to actually shock most of you and say that there is an argument to be made there, though I’m not totally convinced. In the case of a felony or whatnot where we’re looking at some prison time, then the punishment should be exactly the same across social strata. With a monetary penalty though, it does affect people differently. A fine of, say, $5k is going to have a vastly larger effect on someone who makes $25k than on someone who makes $500k a year. I know, I know, there’s a lot of shitty Iceback ideology and money grabbery behind the whole thing. Argue it out in the thread.

Overnight critter below the fold for your viewing enjoyment.


Tonight’s overnight thread is sponsored by The Blue Ringed Octopus.

Hindu ceremonial headgear or Cthuhlu precursor? You decide. Either way, this golf ball-sized little bundle of cuddliness is also considered one of the world’s most venomous animals, ranked just behind Hillary! Clinton. It’s venom is toxic enough to kill humans and currently there is no known antidote. Several specimens are currently being analyzed at the Company’s bioweapons division labs.

Notice: Posted by permission of AceCorp LLC. Please e-mail overnight open thread tips to xgenghisx@gmail.com. Otherwise send tips to Ace.

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