Read — 2013/02/16

by shwolff

Today’s selection of articles includes:

  1. How to Avert Armageddon“, by T.C. (The Economist). A short list of feasible plans to prevent Earth-bound meteors from becoming Earth-pounding meteorites. My favorite: Space graffiti and the Yarkovsky effect. (Love how The Economist isn’t afraid to link to Wikipedia — yay for the free sharing of knowledge!) Also, someone please read Armageddon’s Freedom crew their rights for flagrantly violating the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty — oh wait, that’s right, it’s not yet in effect.
  2. Shock Wave of Fireball Meteor Rattles Siberia, Injuring 1,200“, by Ellen Barry and Andrew Kramer (NY Times). This overview might spur you to read some first-hand accounts of the eerie event. Sonic booms, unreal light, and 3000 kilotons of TNT.
  3. The Myth of the Rich Who Flee from Taxes“, by James Stewart (NY Times). Let’s see what the disciplines say!
    • Sociology: “It’s very clear that, over all, modest changes in top tax rates do not affect millionaire migration” (Cristobal Young, Stanford).
    • Public Policy: Tax flight “is almost entirely bogus — it’s a myth” (Jon Shure, Center on Budget and Policy Priorities).
    • Economics: “[T]he tax difference between Florida and California is huge” (Gregory Mankiw, Harvard).

    Well, there you have it, folks — you don’t need to restrict yourself to just economists to get every possible opinion and then one!

  4. A Flash in Russian Skies, as Inspiration for Fantasy“, by John Williams (NY Times). “But who would save the day? ‘Clearly President Putin.'” (Is it true that comets pose a greater collision threat than asteroids, because the orbits of the former are almost impossible to predict until they’ve passed at least once?)