Saturday, May 12, 2012
Required to Lie?
Open source software advocate Richard Stallman recently noticed that he was asked to lie before an appointment with his physician:
Since I was unwilling to sign a false statement, I asked to see the privacy notice. The receptionist offered me another copy of the consent form. I said I already had that, but that it referred to a "privacy notice" and that's what I didn't have a copy of. The receptionist said, "The rest of this page gives a summary of the privacy notice." It was a very brief summary and treated few points. I said, "This clearly refers to some other Privacy Notice, and it asks me to sign a statement that I have seen it. I cannot sign that if it is not true."I somehow doubt that the situation Stallman describes is unique. Have government regulations with impossible compliance burdens given us "legal notice fatigue" to go along with "warning label fatigue", and induced legions of people to sign false statements in the process?
She said it was a binder 3,000 pages long. I said that I would not ask for a copy, but I did want to take a look at it. She went to look for it, then came back and said she could not find it, but asked me to sign anyway.
"The good therapist believes that reason is the best method for solving emotional problems, and actively helps his or her clients to better use their capacity for reason." -- Michael Hurd, in "Empowerment Depends on Reality" at DrHurd.com
"Even 88 years after their introduction in the US, I'm firmly of the belief that less active investors of modest means are far better served by using open-ended mutual funds than buying individual stocks or bonds themselves." -- Jonathan Hoenig, in "The Right Investing Tool for the Right Job" at SmartMoney
A Year Ago Today
[Paul] Ryan, who imagines that such programs as Social Security and Medicaid can be "reformed," ... is no capitalist. (Otherwise, he'd be clear that the best way to "encourage" competition is for the government to stop manipulating the economy altogether, and would speak of phasing out instead of reforming entitlement programs.)A year later, even some conservative commentators are catching on.
When Metaphors Die
Scott Hanselman, observing that, "The Floppy Disk Icon means 'save' for a whole generation of people who have never seen one," goes on to comment on thirteen other "Old People Icons that Don't Make Sense Anymore".
Today: Corrected two typos.