No. 118 (essentialsaltes) wrote,
No. 118

Breakfast for your brain

Time magazine has a story about the current hole in the estate tax. Apparently for this year there is no estate tax at all, but it will return in full fury on January 1, 2011, something like 50% on everything after the first million bucks. The story also noted that research had shown a definite link between changes in estate tax rates and longevity. There is a significant effect that before an estate-tax hike, people die more frequently in the last two weeks of the year, and before a decrease, people hang on until after the new year.
Thus, as a public health measure, I propose we institute a plan of increasing the estate tax every year, asymptotically approaching some maximum level. This should result in greater average longevity.
Less amusingly, the story quoted a tax-dude who said he was worried that a client was planning an estate-tax suicide. Not a situation he'd been trained to deal with.

In older research, here's a nice review article on lycanthropy.
According to Oribasius of Pergamus, 'The persons affected go out at night time, wander among the tombs til morning, in every way imitating a wolf'. They may also become preoccupied with religious themes and symbols and develop a yearning for raw flesh.

A 49-year-old woman had chronically ruminated and dreamt about wolves, culminating in the delusion of wolf-like metamorphosis after sexual activity with her husband.

One case who identified himself as a gerbil had raised these animals as pets for many years.

And in an update on the teachers who were removed from school not for sprinkling a colleague with holy water (as had been rumored - and heck may still be a true, but later inoperative, statement) but because of a child protective services criminal investigation... "Robinson and Rainier were accused of making Haitian students stand by the trash to symbolize the Haitian culture. A DCF spokesman told the Times that an investigation did not substantiate that claim." "Both teachers have been cleared – and returned to the classroom." Finger of blame and shame now points toward the administration.
Tags: education, money, news, science

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