Coffee Talk

Julian Sanchez calls for better regulation of meatspace:

But what about all these hippy-dippy Real World anarchists who think meatspace can remain immune to the rules any well-managed virtual community understands to be essential? How is it, for instance, that citizens are physically capable of injuring each other, regardless of whether they've opted in to player-versus-player? And what fool designed it so that my image is visible to other all other users in the same city, even if we aren't friends? You've even apparently got to jump through a bunch of hoops to get something called a "restraining order" just to implement a simple block!
At last, an explanation for Wonder Bread:

In early twentieth-century consumers' minds, fluffier bread seemed fresher--even if it wasn't. Squeezable softness had become consumers' proxy for knowing when their bread had been baked. By the 1920s, market surveys revealed that consumers didn't necessarily like eating soft bread, but they always bought the softest-feeling loaf. By the 1950s, softness had become an end in itself, and savvy bakery scientists set about engineering ever-fluffier loaves--like USDA No. 1.
Greek austerity endangered by enraged public:

The political establishment may be committed, but this commitment is meaningless if it can't govern the country--a possibility which is looking more likely by the day. Even as yesterday's vote was recorded, the plaza outside the parliament building looked "like a war zone" according to theGuardian. Greek politicians may be rallying behind austerity, but voters don't appear to be following their lead. A program of cutbacks and destroyed pensions has proven difficult to sell to an enraged populace.
The university still has one comparative advantage:
I don't think the answer is superior learning or even superior credentials. It's assortative mating. Assortative mating works best when the cognitive elites are able to combine signaling behaviors for their superior genes, particularly for doing economics, with the physical proximity that supplies bonding behaviors and oxytocin and also the opportunity to sniff the pheromes. We need classrooms for one kind of fitness signaling and dorms rooms for another. There will be math involved. Not because it's necessarily needed, but because when economists compete for the opportunity to mate, math supplies the antlers. Vive the Red Queen. The role of the tenured professor will survive as ... Cupid.