What Is A Trichoplax?

A Trichoplax is one of the simplest organisms you can find. It has no discernible organs or structure, and is basically a flat blob of tissue that moves around. Is it alive? I don't know. But I thought I'd ruminate on other conundrums in this space.

I Agree

AIG and The Bailout Explained

Just finished reading a thorough, obscenity-laced, and thoroughly entertaining (if also very disheartening) article chronicling how AIG has plunged our economy into a sinkhole, and how our Treasury Dept. and the Fed were complicit in it all. If you read this and aren't angry after you finish, check your pulse. A sample:

"The latest bailout came as AIG admitted to having just posted the largest quarterly loss in American corporate history — some $61.7 billion. In the final three months of last year, the company lost more than $27 millionevery hour. That's $465,000 a minute, a yearly income for a median American household every six seconds, roughly $7,750 a second. And all this happened at the end of eight straight years that America devoted to frantically chasing the shadow of a terrorist threat to no avail, eight years spent stopping every citizen at every airport to search every purse, bag, crotch and briefcase for juice boxes and explosive tubes of toothpaste. Yet in the end, our government had no mechanism for searching the balance sheets of companies that held life-or-death power over our society and was unable to spot holes in the national economy the size of Libya (whose entire GDP last year was smaller than AIG's 2008 losses)."

It is 8 pages long, so if you can't stand to read it all you can get a synopsis of it here. But it's worth an evening read sometime.