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ę Alternate Reality Version of Joe Barton's Statement | Main | Bart Stupak: Hey, Let's Use That BP Escrow Account To Fund Health Care Ľ
June 17, 2010

Overnight Open Thread

Happy Thursday all.

Suckling at the Government Teat: The Moocher Index

Here Veronique de Rugy introduces a new metric by Dan Mitchell that tries to determine whether some states do more income re-distribution than others. So he took the percentage of state residents who receive some form of welfare and subtracted the percentage who fall under that state's poverty level. The difference then is the percentage of 'non-poor' people who are getting welfare i.e. 'moochers'. Dan observes:

Why is Vermont (by far) the state with the largest proportion of non-poor people signed up for welfare programs? I have no idea, but maybe this explains why they elect people like Bernie Sanders. But itís not just Vermont. Four of the top five states on the Moocher Index are from the Northeast, as are six of the top nine. Mississippi also scores poorly, coming in second, but many other southern states do well.
Commenters on his site suggest that Mississippi and Alaska's high Mooch indexes are due to agricultural subsidies and the state oil dividend.

And if you compare the Mooch Index with this chart of the tax burden of each state, it turns out that 5 of the top 10 mooching states also have some of the country's highest effective tax rates. Which means that there's a lot of income re-distribution going on in Vermont, New York, Rhode Island, Hawaii and Connecticut. Based on that I guess it's really no surprise at all that Vermont would elect an avowed Socialist.


30 years Ago: The VHS Tape Comes To America
On June 4, 1977 the VHS tape format was introduced to the US by JVC. Sony's Betamax had arrived a year earlier and had a higher quality video than VHS. But thanks to JVC's licensing agreements, longer recording time, and porn the VHS format won out and defeated Betamax. It's still alive today but just barely. The last standalone VCR was made in 2008 and Hollywood no longer releases movies on videotapes. I still keep an old VCR in the closet just for those few tapes I have that haven't been released on DVD and that I'm too lazy to convert.


Indiana: Home of Crazy Bacon Lovers and Crazy Bacon-Loving Bacon Eating Contests
So a restaurant in IN had a bacon-eating contest where each diner had to eat 1 lb of bacon (that's 80 slices) in 4 minutes. Let's see that Japanese eater, Kobayashi, pull that off - go Joey Chestnut. USA! USA! USA!
And in more bacon news here - Does it really make everything better?

Before You Were Hot - The Ultimate Then and Now Site
Okay this site is supposed to show off people who have grown out of their ugly duckling stage and are now hawt. But mostly I see people who have gone from an awkward, ugly stage to merely eh.


Humans To Go Extinct Within 100 Years Due to Global Warmening Says Aussie Scientist
Of course as this article points out the reporter who interviewed Frank Fenner didn't bother following up on his mid-interview prediction and instead let him chat on about rabbits and his smallpox book. Which means that neither of them really believe the prediction - it's just hyperbole to scare the rubes into action.

Finally an affordable, portable, pocket-sized Personal Fuel Cell
Fuel cells run off hydrogen and oxygen and produce electricity directly instead of from combustion. It's only $99 and each HydroStick has the energy of several AA batteries and can be refilled up to 1000 times. Which makes it a good evolutionary step but hardly the 'disruptive' technology that the article claims. And contrary to their hype I doubt we'll ever have a 'hydrogen economy' since hydrogen doesn't occur naturally and so has to be produced, which makes it an energy transport medium rather than an energy source.


Political Urine Cakes?
Apparently someone is leaving urinal cakes with a politician's face on them around various bathrooms in Florida. Hmm I wonder if Nancy Pelosi in into watersports - let's find out. Thanks to genghis.


And now there's the Stealth Toilet with the world's quietest flush.

Yahoo group. That is all.

Tonight's post brought to you by the greatest ninjitsu move ever:


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

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posted by Maetenloch at 09:26 PM

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