I wonder if it would be possible to "immunise" children against psychological (as opposed to physical) addiction, neural plasticity and all. I'm not sure what it would entail to normal dopamine regulation to make its production less responsive to external substances, nor what the end result would be like with regards to overall competency in life (ahedonia?).
- Pennsylvania is accepting bids to privatise the toll highways. I heard about this through "Squirrel Hill Magazine" - State Representative Dan Frankel wrote a column opposing it.
- The Phillipines have an economy primarily based on exporting its citizens and having them send money home. It has a goal of having 1 million of its people emigrate every year. My conclusion: It is a leech nation that should institute population controls and develop local industry to economic sustainability. Other countries should not permit immigration from the Phillipines.
On the upside, it looks like the Koreas are cautiously taking steps towards reconciliation. In my conversation with (S.) Korean academes, most of them have reached the conclusion that the United States is actively working to prevent inter-Korean peace from reaching a lasting settlement, presumably to tie other factors (like N. Korea opening its markets to exploitation by international capital) to a lasting peace. It seems really cynical, but wouldn't be out of place given American foreign policy over the last 60 years.
I'd like to start playing with the source of the recently (mostly) opensourced Second Life client. It apparently is a lot like Mozilla was right after the initial release - not entirely open, with licensed bits from other folk and other messy details. It's also done in C++, but maybe writing some XS to make a Perl-scriptable client wouldn't be too hard. Hmm.