Dr. Weevil: The Weblog Dr. Weevil: The Weblog

Powered by WordPress

Sunday: July 4, 2010

Domitian and White Castle

Filed under: — site admin @ 11:17 PM GMT-0500

A Volokh Conspiracy post puts me in mind of Suetonius. Jonathan H. Adler reports that the White Castle hamburger chain says that “a single provision” of the recently-passed health insurance reform bill “will eat up roughly 55 percent of its yearly net income after 2014”. In the comments many people sneer at the claim, insisting that White Castle is run by greedy plutocrats who could easily afford the new expenses and are simply lying about the costs of the bill.

That reminded me of a favorite saying of the emperor Domitian. As Suetonius put is (Life of Domitian 21):

He used to say that the lot of princes was most unhappy, since when they discovered a conspiracy, no one believed them unless they had been killed.

Let’s hope we don’t find out how bad the health reform bill is only after it has killed off White Castle and other useful corporations, large and small.

Don’t Do It, Canadians!

Filed under: — site admin @ 11:04 PM GMT-0500

Colby Cosh reports on efforts to rename British Columbia, and adds: “The good news, for those who dread the idea, is that the proposed alternatives so far are almost all unspeakably awful.” One of the names proposed in the linked article is particularly stupid. It’s bad enough having an American state and a Eurasian nation sharing the same name: we really don’t need a third ‘Georgia’ to add to the confusion. Of course, it doesn’t help having to say ‘Eurasian’ instead of ‘European’ or ‘Asian’ for the one whose capital is Tbilisi. The non-peachtree Georgia is on the south slopes of the Caucasus, so it is technically Asian, but seems ethnically and culturally more European: calling it ‘Asian Georgia’ would confuse most listeners. We used to be able to say ‘Soviet Georgia’, but that is no longer true, and ‘Post-Soviet Georgia’ is awkward. We definitely don’t need a third Georgia, even if ‘Canadian Georgia’ would be a clear and distinct way of referring to it.