2-15-14 Hodgepodge

Saturday, February 15, 2014

Gone for About a Week

Family obligations are going to keep me busy and mostly unplugged for about a week. I expect to return to regular blogging by Tuesday, February 24. My absence will also result in long delays in comment moderation and responding to email.

Weekend Reading

"Hold your parents accountable for anything wrong they said or did. But hold yourself accountable for undoing the damage in the here-and-now." -- Michael Hurd, in "Moving Beyond Your Parents' Mistakes" at The Delaware Coast Press

"When a former alcoholic asks my opinion about their having an occasional drink, I suggest they first weigh the benefits and risks." -- Michael Hurd, in "Alcoholism: Rationally Defined" at The Delaware Wave

"Simple logic reveals that it cannot be the health of the citizenry that is the aim of government action in the realm of tobacco and cigarettes; rather, it is the desire to accumulate power over individual citizens, tobacco farmers, and others that lies beneath." -- Amesh Adalja, in "Are Controls on Cigarette Smoking a Rationing of Liberty?" at Forbes

In More Detail

Michael Hurd's advice to people who have struggled with drinking is based on the fact that man has free will -- and the nature of alcohol as a mind-altering drug:

Alcoholism, while not a disease, is not a choice in the normal sense of the term. Choice is a concept that requires a rational state of mind. Most people's minds are altered, at least somewhat, after a drink or two. Because of increased sensitivity to alcohol, an alcoholic's judgment can be suspended after just one or two drinks. In the absence of that judgment, he or she can feel compelled to drink more and more.
Hurd thus further advises any former alcoholic who wants to drink occasionally to experiment only after carefully thinking about why he wishes to do so.

Do Social Media Buttons Do Any Good?

I have one unobtrusive button in the footer of each post here, but I've long been dubious about it. Here's the take-home from one detailed analysis:
[N]ot surprisingly the interview is among the most popular on the site. It has been shared more than a hundred times.

However, there is something interesting about those shares--not one of them occurred by clicking on a social media button. According to my in-page analytics, the buttons haven't been touched in the month since the interview was been published.
I get social media referrals almost daily -- Thanks! -- but I don't think I have ever seen my social media buttons register an out-click. (And I just verified that it would show up, if clicked.)


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