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Whites and Japanese Continue to Oppress Humanity by Inventing Great Stuff Like Lithium-Ion Batteries
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I recently excerpted an interview the head of the Nobel committee gave about how they are working diligently for More Diversity. Similarly The Gu ardian writes:

Nobel prize in literature sets sights on diversity after year of scandal

… Given that the last two winners – Kazuo Ishiguro and Bob Dylan – both write in English and just 14 of the 114 literature laureates are women, Olsson acknowledged this week the need for the jury to “widen our perspective”.

However, most of the top Women of Color write in English. Fortunately, The Guardian explains, there is Maryse Condé from French-speaking Guadeloupe.

But since then the Nobel people have given the three hard science (i.e., legit) Nobels to 8 whites guys and a Japanese guy.

At the rate they’re going this week, they’ll give the Literature Prize to Cormac McCarthy and the Peace Prize to Trump.

By the way, a couple of years ago I was talking to a rich guy who was CEO of an energy storage consulting firm. I mentioned to him that the base model Toyota Camry hybrid came with a lightweight lithium-ion battery and got an EPA 52 MPG, while the more luxurious trims came with the old, heavier lead-acid battery and were rated at 46 MPG.

He was not enthusiastic about driving around with a huge lithium-ion battery under the rear seat. That’s a lot of extremely concentrated fuel, which can catch fire in a crash.

I noticed that Volvo, traditionally the most safety-oriented car brand, is promoting the fact that its new all-electric XC40 is designed specifically to protect the battery:

“To help keep passengers safe and the battery intact in the event of a collision, Volvo Cars also developed a new and unique safety structure for passengers and battery alike in the XC40,” the automaker said in a release. “The battery is protected by a safety cage which consists of a frame of extruded aluminum and has been embedded in the middle of the car’s body structure, creating a built-in crumple zone around the battery.”

Note: Do not take engineering advice from me.

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  1. It remains a source of perpetual mystery, why the Nobel for Literature has never been awarded to Thomas Pynchon for “Gravity’s Rainbow” (and not for his embarrassing later stuff), which remains to date the only truly serious piece of literature produced in the West since 1974. Every single serious-styled American novel since then has either been an imitation of GR, or else an attempt to pretend it doesn’t exist.

    Unless you count the collected “Love and Rockets” by Los Bros, Xaime and Beto Hernandez. We might also make an exception for “White Noise”. Otherwise……??

    I mean, if you’re gonna give a Nobel to Bob Dylan, then at least be fair and give one to Don Van Vliet.

    • Agree: Tusk
    • Replies: @SFG
    , @Anon
    , @Ganderson
  2. Pheasant says:

    Holy shit!

    The guys name can’t be John B Goodenough can it?

  3. SFG says:
    @The Germ Theory of Disease

    Too nerdy. They don’t give Nobels for literature to novels about science. The literary world has yet to be colonized by the D&D crowd the way the TV and movie people have (comic books movies and ‘Stranger Things’ come to mind).

    • Replies: @Mycale
  4. dearieme says:

    The battery … has been embedded in the middle of the car’s body structure

    Handily close to all the passengers, then.

    I’ve got an electric bike. I’ve positioned the battery in front of me so I can see any symptoms of fire.

    Some bikes have the battery positioned beneath your goolies. Not for me.

  5. @Pheasant

    He’s the slacker version of Chuck Berry’s alter ego.

    • Replies: @anonymous
    , @SND
  6. Abe says:

    Duke, duke, duke. Duke, Duke of Earl.
    Dude, dude, dude. Dude, Dude of Wall.

  7. I’m now even more convinced that there should be a Nobel for technology (if Nobel, at this stage, matters at all -except, of course, for money). Give (or should have been given) separate Nobels to inventors of radio, TV, semiconductors, various types of microscopes, chips, neuroimaging, brain scan technologies, WWW, the pill, lasers, …

    And earth sciences, Wegener is 50 times more important than 50 chemistry & physics Nobelists combined. And renormalize the max number of recipients to 5, there are many people working in all sci fields now. And of course, add math.

    And dump lit, peace, economics- these three embarrassments.

    • Replies: @Anonymous
    , @SimpleSong
    , @anon
  8. Personally… I would think most women are very happy with the invention of lithium re-chargeable batteries. Hardly oppressive. But I suppose we really need to ask them first.

    • Replies: @Jim Don Bob
  9. If I’m getting it right, Goodenough has self-published an autobiography with religious/spiritual overtones and in it he allegedly (I have not read it) mentions he was a member of Yale’s Skull and Bones.


    So perhaps (it will not be known for a while) he was nominated repeatedly over the years, and (speculation) the Swedish were counting on him to have died long ago, but he didn’t, and so he got his Nobel.

    • Replies: @SimpleSong
  10. El Dato says:

    So that’s an “Apocalypse Now” ride?

    “Why are you guys sitting on your helmets?”

  11. Hail says: • Website

    And the second guy’s name has “White” right there in it.

  12. Never retrofit a Ford Pinto with a lithium ion battery.

    (It sounds like Toyota made a nasty, Ford-like decision to allow a certain, statistical number of their lesser Camry customers to burn in fiery crashes.)

  13. Nobel Prizes are irrelevant. Obvious for ages that the PC Prizes (peace, literature) are there to equalize the representation of third worlders & women with those of Real Talent.


  14. This particular SciCademy Award is cool in that it is for something with significant engineering applications in the present day. It is like the Nobel for the guy who developed the white LED, which makes very good light bulbs.

    And here we have two nice Whitey-British names: Goodenough and Whittingham in chemistry, to go with Peebles for physics, and Ratcliffe for medicine.

    • Replies: @Grumpy
    , @Amerimutt Golems
  15. LondonBob says:

    Improved batteries is the holy grail for scientists and investors. I remember doing a course at MIT in 2011 and one of the A123 Batteries pioneers was helping teach class, they had a stock surge that day and I thought that guy is tens of millions richer than he was yesterday and he isn’t batting an eyelid. The shares collapsed and they went bankrupt a few months later.

    John B Goodenough, boarding school at Groton, Skull and Bones member…

  16. MG says:

    But but but…our Senators want to import thousands of Indian ‘geniuses’ (future Laureates presumably) and give then instant Green Cards.

    • Replies: @Charon
  17. Charon says:

    You know, even if one of these Asian Indian migrants did one day win a Nobel, it still seems like it’d be better for all concerned if he won it in his own country.

  18. MG says:

    Is the SPLC going to designate the Swedish Academy a white supremacist hate group now?

    • LOL: BB753
    • Replies: @A123
    , @JimB
    , @Hail
  19. @dearieme

    Lithium Ion batteries require special attention and precautions. Ergo they constitute a racist invention– too many fatal ghetto house fires from improper battery management practices.

    • Replies: @Anonymous
  20. Diggs says:

    But can the Japanese invent awesome new stuff ENTIRELY on their own? White guys certainly can.

    • Replies: @oddsbodkins
  21. @Pheasant

    I wonder if it’s an unusual transliteration from the Russian Годунов. The more common transliteration is Godunov. Boris Godunov was a later 16th, early 17th century Russian czar and Alexander Godunov was a ballet dancer and actor.

    And there was Boris Badenov, a villain in Rocky and Bullwinkle.

    • Replies: @jimmyriddle
  22. A123 says:

    Is it true that the SPLC declared the SPLC a hate group for collaborating with military supplier Amazon???


  23. John B. Goodenough is a great name, I guess it pushed him to excel in life just as “A boy named Sue” pushed the narrator to be manly

  24. Anon[324] • Disclaimer says:

    Japanese news shows are devoting huge chunks of time to the battery guy, as is usual with Japanese Nobel winners. These nonogenarians are always treated like rock stars, and their wives always get a lot of attention also. And anyone who went to school with them or taught them.

    • Replies: @White Guy In Japan
  25. Anon[216] • Disclaimer says:

    If Trump pulls out troops out of Syria and other Mideast countries, he deserves a Nobel. He’d be the first American to get our butts out of there ever since we got in.

    When Obama won a Nobel, that very Obama who created the terrorist group ISIS and let it loose against a hapless people, the prize became as much of a sick joke as the time the idiotic Swedes gave it to terrorists like Yasser Arafat and Henry Kissinger. Obama’s a despicable war criminal and an inhuman monster, and he deserves a trial and an execution afterwards for the appalling crimes he committed against humanity.

  26. El Dato says:

    This reminds me of

    what happened to it?


    The Federal Aviation Administration decided on April 19, 2013 to allow U.S. Dreamliners to return to service after changes were made to their battery systems to better contain battery fires.[57] Japanese authorities announced they were doing the same for their airplanes.

    In 2013 concern remained that the solutions put in place by Boeing will not be able to cover the full range of possible failure modes. These include problems that may arise from poor systems integration between the engine indicating and crew alerting system (EICAS) and the battery management system.[58]

    A report adopted November 21, 2014 by the National Transportation Safety Board determined that “the probable cause of this incident was an internal short circuit within a cell [cell 5 or cell 6] of the auxiliary power unit (APU) lithium-ion battery, which led to thermal runaway that cascaded to adjacent cells, resulting in the release of smoke and fire. The incident resulted from Boeing’s failure to incorporate design requirements to mitigate the most severe effects of an internal short circuit within an APU battery cell and the Federal Aviation Administration’s failure to identify this design deficiency during the type design certification process.” The report also made recommendations to the FAA, Boeing and the battery manufacturer.[59]

    The Japan Civil Aviation Bureau was reported to have called for Boeing to redesign the battery “beyond the recommendations from two previous investigations about the 2013 battery incidents by the Japan Transportation Safety Board (JTSB) and the US National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB).”[60] The enclosure Boeing had to add is 185 lb (84 kg) heavier, negating the lighter battery potential.[61]

    • Replies: @The Wild Geese Howard
  27. Don’t worry, they’re going to award 3rd world shamans the Medicine medal for urine therapies. Premarin is cultural appropriation!

  28. Anon[216] • Disclaimer says:
    @The Germ Theory of Disease

    Captain Beefheart does not deserve a Nobel. Any art that is the product of a post-modern breakdown in lofty artistic standards does not deserve a Nobel. A Nobel should go to something worthwhile, not to some guy who just performed random crappy garbage noise amid gruntings and growlings. Christ, if you’ll give a Nobel for that, you’d give a Nobel for anything.

    I can think of scores of musicians who would deserve a Nobel far better, if the prize actually went to musicians. That’s like giving Jackson Pollock a Nobel for being a great painter and ignoring all the great painters of Western Civilization that came before him who actually had talent, such as Leonardo da Vinci, etc.

    What a moronic judgment call.

    • Replies: @Reg Cæsar
  29. …a huge lithium-ion battery under the rear seat. That’s a lot of extremely concentrated fuel, which can catch fire in a crash.

    It’s not quite like that. A big 90 kWh battery is an equivalent to a couple gallons of fuel (I forgot the exact conversion factor, bear with me), in terms of the actual energy stored. It’s just that electric motors are way more efficient than internal combustion engines in converting that energy into useful work. So in a gasoline-powered car you actually carry a lot more stored energy with you.

  30. Here’s the Beeb again: ‘Lithium-ion batteries take chemistry Nobel’

    But their article is especially notable in that four of the five experts they quote are women or ethnics:

  31. Anonymous[149] • Disclaimer says:

    One has to feel for John Goodenough.

    Finally, at his advanced age he can see out the rest of his days with the satisfaction of being accorded the highest accolade and recognition for his great work.

  32. Anonymous[149] • Disclaimer says:

    One of those strange old mediaeval descriptive English surnames which, literally, means what it says.
    C.f. ‘Doolittle’.

    • Replies: @Bert Horserapist
  33. “creating a built-in crumple zone around the battery.” so the back-seat passengers are part of that crumble zone?

  34. syonredux says:

    Seems that Goodenough is the oldest Nobel Laureate:

    John Bannister Goodenough (born 25 July 1922) is an American professor and solid-state physicist. He is currently a professor of mechanical engineering and materials science at The University of Texas at Austin. He is widely credited for the identification and development of the lithium-ion battery as well as for developing the Goodenough–Kanamori rules for determining the sign of the magnetic superexchange in materials.

    In 2014, he received the Charles Stark Draper Prize for his contributions to the lithium-ion battery.[2] In 2019, he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry, making him the oldest Nobel laureate ever.[3]

    Goodenough was born in Jena, Germany, to Erwin Ramsdell Goodenough (1893–1965) and Helen Meriam Goodenough. His father was working on his Ph.D. at the Harvard Divinity School at the time of John’s birth and later became a Professor in the history of religion at Yale. John is also the younger brother of the late University of Pennsylvania anthropologist Ward Goodenough. John and his brother Ward attended boarding school at Groton School.[4] John Goodenough received a B.S. in Mathematics, summa cum laude, from Yale University in 1944, where he was a member of Skull and Bones.[5] After serving in the US Army as a meteorologist[6] in World War II, he returned to complete a Ph.D. in Physics under the supervision of Clarence Zener at the University of Chicago in 1952.

  35. Ganderson says:
    @The Germ Theory of Disease

    One of my favorite episodes of the Rockford Files features a Pynchonesque character played by Anthony Zerbe, whose novel was called “Free Fall to Ecstasy” . The running joke was everyone loved it, but no one had finished it.
    And, I’d give a posthumous Nobel to Frank, rather than the Captain.

  36. Bruce says:

    Since we don’t have a resistor that works like copper works as a conductor, we probably don’t want batteries much more powerful for their size. Sooner or later a short will cause a fire.

  37. @Buzz Mohawk


    That’s a Pro Tip right there!

    Bonus Pro Tip:

    Never play leapfrog with a unicorn.

  38. JimB says:

    To help keep passengers safe and the battery intact in the event of a collision, Volvo Cars also developed a new and unique safety structure for passengers and battery alike in the XC40

    The battery is attached to the XC40 passenger ejection seat.

  39. anonymous[231] • Disclaimer says:
    @Steve Sailer

    Wow – Steve I have been a follower of your work (National Review, blog and website) for over 20 years. I was more than shocked when I read this post and realized that I had actually met and been subject to repeated contact with a Nobel Prize winner. Goodenough joined the Mechanical Engineering department at the University of Texas (UT) in the late 1980s after completing work at Oxford that laid the foundation for the creation of high energy density Li-ion batteries.

    I was a graduate student in Mechanical Engineering at the UT in the mid to late 1990s. I had a Thermal/Fluids concentration but took a course in the Materials section (Transmission Electron Microscopy – Rabenberg) after I joined the original team for a startup nanomaterials company. There was a classroom component to the course but also a lab component where we created samples and took images of them (dark field, bright field, diffraction pattern, etc..).

    As a result of those activities, I had a number of interactions with people in Materials.
    Not only was Goodenough a brilliant scientist/inventor but from my brief interactions with him and descriptions from those who were actually his students – he is a a very gracious man, all around good person and wonderful mentor to his students who came from all over the world. At that time he was in his mid 70s and still doing important work. He is 97 years old today and still has a somewhat active research group . God bless him!!!

  40. JimB says:

    I fear the golden age of white scientists is coming to an end.

    • Replies: @prime noticer
  41. JimB says:

    Is the SPLC going to designate the Swedish Academy a white supremacist hate group now?

    It’s likely they can avoid that designation by paying a generous subscription fee to SPLC

  42. Dammit, Hitler’s buck-toothed buddies are at it again!

  43. Those who lith by the battery should die by the battery!

  44. BTW, are the Nobel committee going to have to do a “Harvard” and start throttling back on Asians and Whites to promote more PoCs?

  45. danand says:
    @Buzz Mohawk

    “Never retrofit a Ford Pinto with a lithium ion battery.”

    Buzz, are you saying it’s not a good idea to ignite a candle from both ends?

    “(It sounds like Toyota made a nasty, Ford-like decision to allow a certain, statistical number of their lesser Camry customers to burn in fiery crashes.)”

    My thought is that Toyota went with the LiPo batteries in the effort to hit the mandated “MPG” targets for their fleet. The LE models, the units that will sell in far greater numbers, will drag up that average. This LE model is also equipped with skinnier, harder, MPG enhancing tires that the buyers of the premium variants would likely not be enthused about (no bling).

    I would guess overall Toyota has saved more lives via their superior products than they’ve caused lost due to runaway accelerations (faulty gas pedal execution?). Time has shown that Toyotas are generally tops in reliability. Those lesser reliable vehicles have resulted in plenty of lives lost; the consequence of roadside breakdowns, repair garage accidents, etc. The world would almost certainly be a “safer” place/space if a higher portion of the vehicles out there were Toyotas.

    I kid you not but by happenstance just last night, @ ~ 2:00AM, I was looking up crashed 2018 hybrid Camrys on Co-Part (none had burned to the ground). With the price of gas now ~$4.50 a gallon out here I’m thinking a Toyota powered ’59 Buick would be the bomb.

  46. But what about the environmental irresponsibility baked into the lithium-ion cake? Don’t they care about that?

    Get out your globes, class. Where is the lithium extracted? From salt flats in northern Chile and Bolivia. Where are the finished products from? Shenzen, primarily.

    These places are antipodal. Thanks to Earth’s oblate bulge, they are about as far apart as two points on the surface can be. (Chimborazo, not Everest nor Mauna Kea, is the surface peak farthest from the core.)

    Black & Decker’s battery says “Cell made in Korea / Further processed in China”. So the world’s longest one-way voyage isn’t enough. They have to take a detour!

    Where is Greta?

    • Replies: @Ibound1
    , @anon
  47. Grumpy says:
    @Buzz Mohawk

    I am starting to think that LEDs are not good. One of the buildings I work in was re-lit with LEDs, and now nobody wants to be in it. The new lighting in a remodeled restaurant I like has the same effect. Street lights are increasingly garish. Car lights, too. I hope they can figure out a way to make the light feel more natural. Nighttime is getting unpleasant.

    • Replies: @Twinkie
  48. Mycale says:

    Literature is getting invaded by the ultra-SJW crowd (see the current YA community for a glimpse into the bleak future of literature) so yea it’s quite unlikely the geeks are going to make significant inroads. Still Ready Player One and The Martian were successful nerd books that gave their authors a career and were (not surprisingly) quickly turned into big budget high profile movies.

  49. SND says:
    @Steve Sailer

    Hopefully, the B. stands for Boris.

  50. Ibound1 says:
    @Reg Cæsar

    So the battery wasn’t invented by the Koreans or Chinese but they are the ones profiting? At least Trump notices something is amiss.

  51. Jimbo says:

    Note – the alternative battery tech that is in models like the Lexus ES 300h is not lead-acid, but nickle-metal hydride.

  52. Twinkie says:

    Buy high CRI LEDs. Low cost LEDs have poor color rendering index (usually 80-85). You can buy those with 90+ CRI with a bit more money, and these approximate incandescents (CRI 100) better. Also, LEDs are now available in a wide range of color spectrum/temperature. Buy soft, yellowish ones with 2700-3000K to simulate incandescents and Halogen.

    • Replies: @El Dato
  53. As a consolation, in the event of a battery fire, the lithium fumes will help calm the passengers while the wait for rescue.

    • Replies: @Anonymous
  54. @Buzz Mohawk

    As noted by Sailer in 2018, hard science Nobelists cluster in mainly three groups: Ashkenazis, upper middle class Brits, and Northern European Continentals.

    Sadly Britain is turning into Africa-Pakistan.

  55. @Diggs

    Remember when there were no blue LEDs?

  56. Anonymous[840] • Disclaimer says:
    @Jim bob Lassiter

    Lithium Ion batteries require special attention and precautions.

    .. which is why they are also called “black batteries” or “blackeries”

  57. El Dato says:


    Avoid the “daylight white” ones unless you need to really stay awake or want to equip a surgery.

    As for muni installing white LEDs as street lighting … it should be followed by a beating and a tarring. There is nothing nicer than low-pressure sodium.

  58. Anonymous[840] • Disclaimer says:

    These are no lithium fumes!!!

    They are really nasty fumes of various chemicals, containing cobalt, too.

  59. guest says:

    The Swedes give it to a Jap and a Jew, but that’s not enough because they both write in English. You know, the dominant international language. As Latin and French once were.

  60. SafeNow says:

    Regarding Volvo’s safety reputation, I am old enough to remember Volvo’s big-wheels-truck commercial in which the truck crushed the roofs of competing vehicles but not the Volvo vehicle. It was later learned that for the ad Volvo had weakened the competing roofs and strengthened its own roof. (reporters who cover hurricanes please note that the plural of roof is not rooves).

    Regarding lithium batteries, these might have exploded — a cofactor in causing the dive-boat deaths. Of course a proper system for recharging these should have been used.

  61. @Anon

    Captain Beefheart does not deserve a Nobel.

    No “singer-songwriter” does. But I’d rather listen to “Electricity” or “Plastic Factory” than anything out of Dylan’s mouth.

    Sure ’nuff ‘n’ yes I would.

  62. Prof Whittingham’s PhD students look ethnically, but not sexually, diverse:

    So Whittingham is an Englishman who teaches in America, while Goodenough is an American who has a prize at the Royal Society of Chemistry named for him.

    How covalent of them.

    The elder scientist (97) served as a US Army meteorologist in WWII, so he was literally Goodenough for government work.

    • Replies: @prosa123
  63. Dave Pinsen says: • Website

    Goodenough isn’t good enough for diversity advocates.

    • LOL: Andy
  64. @JimB

    “I fear the golden age of white scientists is coming to an end.”

    indeed it is. just as the golden age of european men creating almost everything in every field is slowly coming to a close.

  65. @Diversity Heretic

    It’s an English surname. “Goodfellow” and “Sweetman” are, perhaps, more common examples of the same sort of surname.

    I’m pretty sure I have come accross a Goodenough before – maybe a footballer at one of the smaller London clubs in the ’80s.

    • Replies: @Andy
  66. Andy says:

    yes, not that uncommon. Wikipedia lists several Goodenoughs:

    Still, a great name, I think

  67. prosa123 says:
    @Reg Cæsar

    For his Ph.D student’s, Dr. M. Stanley Whittingham was the reason they came to Binghamton University

    Absolutely no one goes to Binghamton without a very good reason. It’s a classic example of the term “middle of nowhere.”

  68. @Anon

    Yes Obama could’ve instantly quelled the bloodshed and ”attenuated” the riots. Simply say to black people: “Listen my brothers: DO WHAT THE POLICE OFFICER SAYS. You aren’t going to beat up the whole force they can always radio in more choppers and such. I know you hate accommodating any requests but doing this one thing throughout your life really will save you money jk save your life. I guarantee you will have your day in court to argue your side of the issue.” but BHO just couldn’t bring himself to helping people who risk their lives daily to make the country safer for everyone. Just couldn’t be bothered, I guess they took his pot/beer once. But when you really don’t care if someone lives or dies and your hate. Their. Ever loving. Guts you don’t care if you help them they could disappear off the face of the earth and you wouldn’t tease an Afro.

    • Agree: Old Prude
  69. Anonymous[190] • Disclaimer says:

    IBM and Link had big manufacturing plants there. You started out at Endicott Coil or McIntosh (the chrome plated stereo equipment maker) and then after a few years went to IBM and retired out not quite a millionaire, but affluent. It would have been a million plus in 2019 dollars. You were four hours away from the city and in a bucolic, pretty area, snowy in winter, but pleasant.

    • Replies: @The Wild Geese Howard
  70. anon[547] • Disclaimer says:
    @Reg Cæsar

    Fortunately lithium miners are protected by the extensive social safety net of Bolivia. Not to mention the tightly enforced environmental laws.

  71. anon[547] • Disclaimer says:

    PG & E blackouts already occurring. Because fire danger.More on the way.

    It’s a big swath of rural northern California.

    SoCal Edison may be doing the same because of wind, but only in rural areas such as San Bernadino county, Riverside county and LA county. Places where no one lives or uses much electricity, yeah.

    Maintenance of the power grid is so 20th century.

  72. Hail says: • Website

    I see they’ve designated “Jewish Voice for Peace” a hate group.

    From the ADL writeup:

    Jewish Voice for Peace is a radical anti-Israel activist group that advocates for a complete economic, cultural and academic boycott of the state of Israel. JVP rejects the view that the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is a tragic dispute over land […]

  73. SafeNow says:

    “Do what the police officer says”

    I would add the word “ —- instantly!” There exists what I call the macho/combative male hesitation response. The football coach says everybody line-up for wind sprints, but nobody immediately moves. The teacher says go up to the blackboard and the combative male or sometimes female hesitates, so as to create the fiction that, well I’m thinking about it — I don’t have to, you know. Harmless enough in those cases. But the police officer is not the football coach or your parent or teacher.

  74. @El Dato

    “Just rub some dirt on it, bro.”

  75. anonymous[388] • Disclaimer says:

    Steve, many car lines made under the umbrella GM(C) brand were designed with the battery located in a metal cage located directly below the passenger seat, which is actually a hollow compartment. It is a completely pointless, over-engineered feature intended to guard against a problem scenario which is extraordinarily rare. They require special batteries, meaning you have little choice but to use GM’s in-house brand, AC-Delco, and will be out of luck at many, many shops should you suddenly require a new battery. The arrangement of the terminals is different, and they have a fume vent, to which an exhaust hose is attached within the case, to keep battery fumes out of the car. If anything goes wrong with this ventilation, passengers can be poisoned and the interior of the car will be destroyed in a matter of hours. It also increases the chance that owners will opt to pay a shop to replace their battery and get ripped off. I’m told my grandparent’s Volvo, in the 80s or 90s, had the same battery placement. Volvo, which has a very messy business history, was partnered with GM in the 90s, but I don’t know to what extent.

  76. @Anon

    The Japanese are collectively proud of the achievements of their people. Normal and sane.

    • Replies: @Anon
    , @Houston 1992
  77. @Anonymous

    You were four hours away from the city and in a bucolic, pretty area, snowy in winter, but pleasant.

    For some reason I always thought that Binghamton, NY looked like a nice, cozy city to live in.

    Binghamton was a major nuclear target during the Cold War because of the presence of IBM and several other defense firms.

    Notable residents include Camile Paglia, Paul Reiser, MMA legend Jon “Bones” Jones, and Mr. Twilight Zone himself, Rod Serling.

    Local department store institution Boscov’s is still making a go of it in this Internet age.

  78. Anonymous[751] • Disclaimer says:
    @Bardon Kaldian

    The Kyoto Prize is an interesting attempt at flexibility along with prestige.

    Like they can decide it’s silly to have a major academic award without Chomsky getting one and make up a category for his field:
    The Kyoto Prize consists of three different categories, each with 4 sub-fields. The fields change every year to provide a diverse group of Laureates each year. The categories being:

    Kyoto Prize in Advanced Technology[5]
    With Fields: Electronics, Biotechnology and Medical Technology, Materials Science and Engineering and Information Science.
    Kyoto Prize in Basic Sciences[6]
    With Fields: Mathematical Sciences, Biological Sciences, Earth and Planetary Sciences(Astronomy and Astrophysics), and Life Sciences (With the fifth category of Cognitive Sciences with one Laureate, Noam Chomsky in 1988).
    Kyoto Prize in Arts and Philosophy[7]
    With Fields: Music, Arts, Theater(Cinema), and Thought and Ethics

  79. @Anonymous

    There are a lot of rich people today who like funding prizes, which is great for the winners who get big checks. I’m all for the rich guys doing this, but I warn them that the odds are very much against their new prize, no matter how high quality, becoming even 1/10th as famous as the Nobel Prizes.

    • Replies: @Anon
    , @anonymous
  80. @bruce county

    Well, lithium ion batteries make women’s vibrators last longer, so there’s that.

    • Replies: @Autochthon
  81. @prosa123

    Absolutely no one goes to Binghamton without a very good reason. It’s a classic example of the term “middle of nowhere.”

    The real work of IBM was done in Binghamton’s sister cities. (Armonk was for paperwork.) The Triple Cities (IBM), Schenectady (GR), and Rochester were the original Research Triangle.

    The Susquehanna Valley was our Silicon Valley before the likes of Gates and Jobs were born.

    • Agree: PiltdownMan
  82. Anon[324] • Disclaimer says:
    @White Guy In Japan

    This morning it’s the Yomiuri’s first page top headline in their end-of-the-world font, white on black, three quarters of the width of the paper. The story also covers most of page 3 plus most of the popular “inside back cover” page on the reverse of the TV listings.

    • Replies: @Anon
  83. Anon[324] • Disclaimer says:
    @Steve Sailer

    How in heck did the moronic MacArthur genius grant get so famous?

    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
    , @Jim Don Bob
  84. @prosa123

    A lot of people go to Binghamton and Albany for college. The State University of New York has big campuses in each of those cities. No place in the Northeast is actually in the “middle of nowhere.” That term works better for cities in the plains states.

    Interestingly, if you look at a map, almost every city east of the Mississippi/Missouri is within a four hour drive of the next neighboring big city. And that geographic relationship holds all over the Southwest, too, and all the way out to Southern California. I vaguely remember reading that it had something to do with the distance early settler wagons could travel in the space of a week or something like that.

    • Replies: @anonymous2space
    , @Prosa123
  85. @Anon

    The word “genius” helped.

    • Replies: @Reg Cæsar
  86. anonymous[751] • Disclaimer says:
    @Steve Sailer

    It’s one of those things where there’s a hard cap on how much normal people will pay attention.

    Academics love giving themselves prizes.

    But while plenty of normal people will skim a news story about Nobel laureates but they’re not going any deeper into who’s hot at the chemistry departments in Cambridge, Mass.

    Like horse racing or the Indy 500. I know tons of people who will watch the Kentucky Derby and then hope for a Triple Crown. I* know zero people who care about horse racing the other 99.9% of their waking lives. There’s just only so much room for thinking about old people winning chemistry prizes or horses winning two minute races. Laymen don’t know much about either and they’re fine with that.

    *Of course if you knew degenerate gamblers–especially older ones–or horse people you would know people who watch other races. I don’t and I don’t think I am alone in that.

  87. Anon[324] • Disclaimer says:

    The Ig Nobel Prize is weirdly popular and widely reported on in the media when a Japanese is a recipient. They take it with good humor, and the award is considered prestigious, not embarrassing. In general, Japanese recipients get the award for quirky or funny results of otherwise serious research.

  88. @PiltdownMan

    Ithaca is more in the middle of nowhere, in a pleasant way, than Binghamton or Albany or Syrcause because Ithaca is not on the interstate system. You have to go out of your way to go there so there’s not random Canadian trucker traffic–Cortland, a SUNY town between Binghamton and Syracuse on I-81 has a Tim Horton’s– and such.

    They put Cornell in Ithaca because it’s physically beautiful, not because it is near anything. College towns in the middle of nowhere are a cool part of America. You get museums and book stores and classical music and Asian restaurants but not traffic or sprawl.

  89. @anonymous2space

    A lot of waterfalls in the Finger Lakes region, which I presume powered mills in the 19th Century.

  90. @anonymous2space

    College towns in the middle of nowhere lose a bit of their charm when they are no longer in the middle of nowhere. Some college towns are in rapidly growing cities, and are no longer affordable places for misfits to hang out and enjoy the cultural activities that come with a college town.

    I grew up in a college town (Fayetteville, Arkansas) and live in another college town (Madison. Wisconsin). The lack of affordable housing is making a big dent in the livability. In NW Arkansas it was the growth or WalMart, Tyson’s, etc. In Madison it is mostly rich kids from NY or China driving up the real estate market, with the sort of tech based industry one often sees in a college area thriving on the cheap labor of recent CS and other STEM graduates.

    • Replies: @anonymous2space
  91. @Steve Sailer

    How in heck did the moronic MacArthur genius grant get so famous?

    The word “genius” helped.

    MacArthur was a nudist. That could have made the grant really interesting.

  92. @Bardon Kaldian

    This is an interesting topic–some thoughts:

    The Nobel committee seems to be willing to award the prize for what are fundamentally engineering/technological achievements as long as some tenuous connection can be made to basic science. Examples: development of MRI scans, development of CT scanners, Li-ion batteries, printed circuits, blue LEDs…these are not really purely scientific advances but rather brilliant inventions, that nonetheless won the prize. Now, this is against the original intent of the prize but I frankly think it is the right thing to do as the line between science and technology is extremely fuzzy, and always has been.

    Unfortunately this leaves some major technological advancements out in the cold because even with major effort they cannot be plausibly shoehorned/fudged into one of the categories. Advances in computing science and information theory in particular are of enormous practical importance and often quite theoretically beautiful, but can’t really be recognized.

    So I agree it would be nice to expand the prize categories, which of course is not unprecedented (economics..)

  93. @Paleo Liberal

    Yeah, there’s nothing around Ithaca, eg.

    Go literally less than 10 miles (which = 10 minutes with no traffic) and you can build bonfires and shoot guns on cheap real estate that’s minutes away from one of the world’s greatest universities and the typical college town amenities.

    • Replies: @Anonymous
  94. @adreadline

    Just want to point out that I mentioned Goodenough in an iSteve comment a few months ago as somebody whose academic work had enormous practical implications. So I’m going to surmise that clearly the committee closely studies iSteve….

  95. anonymous[751] • Disclaimer says:

    Boomer economics is laughable garbage and it is not a Nobel prize no matter how much Paul Krugman lies on his bio.

    I literally can’t think of a single non-boomer who takes that bullshit seriously.

    It is absolutely dumpster tier nonsense no better than French literary theory that boomer libertarian idiots are so quick to dismiss.

  96. @anonymous2space

    … but not traffic or sprawl.

    That’s hilarious. Are you a time-traveller who’s just arrived from 1975, or just another out-of-touch baby boomer? Either way, tell us more about what college towns were like in back in the day.

    • Replies: @Anonymous
    , @PiltdownMan
  97. @Jim Don Bob

    I am afraid you’re just repeating the same joke Bruce made, but without the arch subtlety that made it funny when he wrote it.

  98. Anonymous[751] • Disclaimer says:

    I was paid to teach at Cornell in the 2000s. You?

    • Replies: @Autochthon
  99. @Anonymous

    I was a professor at a flagship state university I won’t name in the 2000s. I have worked at two others flagship state universities, and I have multiple graduate degrees (all from flagship state universities).

    I suspect Ithaca is not the most representative of “college towns” based upon other comments (I myself have never been there).

    The refusal to maintain and improve infrastructure coupled with the overpopulation from importing millions of aliens year upon year who themselves spawn like cockroaches means that most any town with a population over about thirty thousand or so now has sprawl and shitty traffic (the students and employees of most R1 universities will easily amount to thirty thousand). Hell, traffic is a pain in the ass in several towns I can name that have community colleges and junior colleges….

  100. Anonymous[190] • Disclaimer says:

    The Ithaca shotgun was perhaps the best pump action shotgun ever made. I think they are defunct now.

    • Replies: @kaganovitch
    , @Prosa123
  101. @Autochthon


    Ithaca is pretty much as described. I was there recently. It is a five hour drive away from New York City, and an hour away from Binghamton and Syracuse, the nearest “big” cities.

    The Finger Lakes region (including towns smaller than Ithaca, such as Penn Yan) are popular during the summer as a (far away) vacation spot from most of the Eastern Seaboard suburban population, but they’ve undergone something of a slight uptick, economically speaking, in the last forty years. Adding to the feel of the place is an inward migration of Amish and Mennonite farmers from Ohio and Pennsylvania in the last couple of decades, attracted by the depressed farm prices of the area.

    It really is quite nice, still. And geographic isolation may well keep it that way.

    Ithaca may well not be representative of most college towns, though, as you say. But a factor in the revival of small isolated college towns in the Northeast, paradoxically, the rising cost of college. Increasing numbers of administrative staff on payrolls, as well as richer undergraduates (on average) in these colleges, means that there has been additional income pumped into the local economies. In Ithaca, which I first visited in 1979, it definitely shows. Back then, it was at the tail end of a decades-long economic depression that came with the slow demise of the Erie Canal system. Now, it has picked up, quite noticeably.

    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
  102. @Anonymous

    One of those strange old mediaeval descriptive English surnames which, literally, means what it says.
    C.f. ‘Doolittle’.

    Yeah, but I have nothing to thank my great great great great great great Grandfather for.

  103. Yngvar says:

    One day a lithium-ion car is going to collide with a hydrogen school bus and a voice like that in Ramah will be heard once again.

  104. @Anonymous

    The Ithaca shotgun was perhaps the best pump action shotgun ever made. I think they are defunct now.

    Still around under new management(moved from NY to OH)

  105. gate666 says:

    moron obama pulled out of iraq.

  106. Prosa123 says:

    Ithaca Shotguns still exist. The company is under different ownership and is based in Ohio.

    • Replies: @Anonymous
  107. Prosa123 says:

    Athens, Georgia, home of the University of Georgia, is another good-sized college town that’s not on the Interstate system.

    • Replies: @bruce county
  108. @White Guy In Japan

    Can you elaborate on Volvo cars “messy business history ?”
    How do you rate Volvo Cars business performance since Ford sold them to the Han?

  109. Prosa123 says:

    While the State University of New York system is mediocre, to put it mildly, out of its four top-level campuses (Albany, Binghamton, Buffalo and Stony Brook), Binghamton is the overall best in academic terms. Stony Brook may have a slight edge in STEM.

    Speaking of SUNY and Ithaca, although Cornell is a private university, its college of agriculture is part of the SUNY system. Students in that college pay the SUNY tuition rather than the far higher Cornell tuition.

  110. @Anonymous

    I know about Kyoto prize & I hope it will become more prominent in the future (not many other prizes given by various billionaires etc.). Just, Nobel is globally established by inertia of historical European dominance; there are not too many areas so Nobel remains, so to speak, identifiable, while Kyoto is, although more “fair”, somewhat diffused; Nobel still retains the aura of glamor of past recipients (Fleming, Einstein, Hemingway, Dirac, Pauling, M. Curie, …).

    So, I’d say that Nobel will retain its supreme position among awards, but it will have become devalued as time passes by. All awards will lose in significance.

  111. @Prosa123

    I have the HogSlayer. I purchased the Model 37 years ago and beat the crap outta that gun, still a fine shootin S/G. My Remington 870 MM deserves mention too, besides.. its just damn cool looking.

  112. prosa123 says:

    The Nobel committee seems to be willing to award the prize for what are fundamentally engineering/technological achievements as long as some tenuous connection can be made to basic science. Examples: development of MRI scans

    As the Nobel prize-winning physicist Isidor Rabi was about to undergo an MRI scan in the late 1980’s, the technician started giving him a brief routine explanation of how the device worked. “You don’t need to explain it to me,” the elderly Rabi replied. “I invented it.”

    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
  113. @prosa123

    Did the first Nobel in Physics go to Roentgen (sp?) for discovering x-rays or for inventing the x-ray machine?

    • Replies: @SimpleSong
  114. @PiltdownMan

    Ithaca is nice, Cooperstown is even nicer.

    The small cities of Upstate New York, however …

    • Replies: @Lagertha
    , @Reg Cæsar
    , @Anon87
  115. @Anon

    MacArthur was a capital C Conservative who would be appalled at many of the “geniuses” selected. Henry Ford too would be rolling in his grave if he knew what the Ford Foundation has become.

    • Replies: @Anon
  116. Lagertha says:
    @Steve Sailer

    My dad and the Japanese had ships drawn-out with energy; and the containers that were to be drawn out and up. Battery storage was a thing in 1971. physics eludes most people.

  117. @Steve Sailer

    Yes, that’s true…Nobel committee really seems to like medical imaging since there have been three prizes for it! That also raises the question of whether this was the first example of a technological development winning a scientific prize. Sorta splitting hairs here I guess, but I believe Roentgen both made a number of fundamental discoveries about x rays themselves as well as sussing out the main application, medical imaging. So he ticked the ‘theory’ box. In contrast CT scanning is a complicated computer reconstruction of a bunch of plain film x rays, and the basic technology behind MRI is nuclear magnetic resonance. In both cases the respective inventors of these technologies did not make fundamental contributions to understanding the underlying phenomena, in contrast to Roentgen, who did both..

    …and…nobody is interested in this except me so I’ll stop now.

  118. Anon[324] • Disclaimer says:
    @Jim Don Bob

    O’Sullivan’s Law in action.

    Same with government research grants, NIH and such, topics your allowed to research are becoming highly constrained, and more and more, the intersectional identity of grant seeking researchers is looked at.

    How to prevent this? Maybe require age and geographical diversity in foundation hires, quota in some non college graduates, affiliate with an Orthodox church. Require participation in “kill and eat your own venison” outings by staff? Do research on life experiences and backgrounds of conservatives and put that in application forms. Do personality testing. Quickly fire any staff that exhibits insubordination (but how to build that into the DNA of a multigenerational organization?). Chick Fill A somehow manages to hire decent staff.

  119. @Steve Sailer

    Ithaca is nice, Cooperstown is even nicer.

    What’s nice about Cooperstown is that you’re safely removed from students! (Other than a few interns at the museums.)

    It’s also pricier than anywhere else for miles. You have to drive over a half-hour for anything beyond the basic necessities, though. Not a place for the lazy.

    Great rural hospital, though, if you’re near death.

    The small cities of Upstate New York, however …

    Those with a good local employer, such as Corning, are doing fine. The rest is pure Rust Belt, without the home-rule that allows similar states to rebound.

    Someone on Quora recently claimed* that an independent upstate would be a basket case without the flow of tax subsidies from downstate.

    How arrogant! The other upstate cities would just gang up on Albany to demand an economic environment in which they could thrive. Other moribund Rust Belt cities– Pittsburgh, Racine, Lowell– have bounced back.

    The problem with the Erie Canal-Hudson River corridor is that it’s in a state dominated by a giant metro fueled by finance, media, law, and other industries immune to bad tax and regulatory policies.

    *Kindle autocorrected claimed to flaked, and I was tempted to leave it that way!

  120. @SimpleSong

    They awarded technology prizes so far (Marconi, Ruska, Kilby,..), but it would be fair to establish the separate area where all inventions from all areas (physics, chemistry, various types of engineering, medicine, ..) could be awarded properly.

    Needless to say, all areas of mathematics should be given awards, any of the big 5 fields:

    The same with earth sciences.

    As for social & humanist sciences (art history, linguistics, theology, sociology, literary theory, anthropology,..) – forget it.

  121. El Dato says:

    More pale male staleness in action:

    With Category Theory, Mathematics Escapes From Equality

    Lurie published his first book, Higher Topos Theory, in 2009. The 944-page volume serves as a manual for how to interpret established areas of mathematics in the new language of “infinity categories.” In the years since, Lurie’s ideas have moved into an increasingly wide range of mathematical disciplines. Many mathematicians view them as indispensable to the future of the field. “No one goes back once they’ve learned infinity categories,” said John Francis of Northwestern University.

    Mathematicians are still grappling with both the magnitude of Lurie’s ideas and the unique way in which they were introduced. They’re distilling and repackaging his presentation of infinity categories to make them accessible to more mathematicians. They are performing, in a sense, the essential work of governance that must follow any revolution, translating a transformative text into day-to-day law. In doing so, they are building a future for mathematics founded not on equality, but on equivalence.


    In 2006 Lurie released a draft of Higher Topos Theory on In this mammoth work, he created the machinery needed to replace set theory with a new mathematical foundation, one based on infinity categories. “He created literally thousands of pages of this foundational machinery that we’re all now using,” said Charles Rezk, a mathematician at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, who did important early work on infinity categories. “I could not imagine producing Higher Topos Theory, which he produced in two or three years, in a lifetime.”

    Then in 2011, Lurie followed it up with an even longer work. In it, he reinvented algebra.

    In Higher Algebra, the latest version of which runs to 1,553 pages, Lurie developed a version of the associative property for infinity categories — along with many other algebraic theorems that collectively established a foundation for the mathematics of equivalence.

    Ain’t Nobody Got Time for That!

    “Most people working in this field have not read Lurie systematically,” said André Joyal, a mathematician at the University of Quebec in Montreal whose earlier work was a key ingredient in Lurie’s books. “It would take a lot of time and energy, so we sort of assume what’s in his book is correct because almost every time we check on something it is correct. Actually, all the time.”

  122. Anonymous[427] • Disclaimer says:

    The big advantage of the 37 was its downward ejection of fired shells and also that prewar and postwar versions until the 70s were very well made and finished while having a fairly reasonable price. Current guns vary quite a bit and I have seen several that really needed some gunsmithing to make them really shoot well.

    The Ithaca 37 (or Model 37) is a pump-action shotgun made in large numbers for the civilian, military, and police markets. Based on a 1915 patent by firearms designer John Browning for a shotgun initially marketed as the Remington Model 17, it utilizes a novel combination ejection/loading port on the bottom of the gun which leaves the sides closed to the elements. Since shotshells load and eject from the bottom, operation of the gun is equally convenient for both right- and left-handed shooters. This makes the gun popular with left-handed shooters.

    1 History
    2 Users
    3 Operation
    4 Selected versions
    5 Argentinian variants
    6 See also
    7 Notes
    8 References


    Following the First World War, the Ithaca Gun Company sought to produce a pump-action shotgun to compete with the ubiquitous Winchester Model 1912. They used the Remington Model 17 as their model and made modifications—such as simplifying and cost-saving alterations of the firing pin and ejection mechanism, the work of Ithaca designer Harry Howland in 1931[1]—while waiting for related patents to expire. After gearing for production of their new shotgun as the Ithaca Model 33 in 1933, Ithaca discovered a Pedersen patent that would not expire until 1937, and production had to be delayed. In 1937, it was released as the Ithaca 37.

    With the depression dragging on and war looming on the horizon, it was possibly the worst time to introduce a sporting arm. Many sporting arms ceased production entirely during the same period. While Ithaca did produce some shotguns for military use during the war, they also produced M1911 pistols and M3 submachine guns.

    After World War II, Ithaca resumed production of the Model 37. Made in many different models, the Ithaca 37 has the longest production run for a pump-action shotgun in history, surpassing that of the Winchester Model 12, the original inspiration for Ithaca’s entry into the market. Ithaca has suffered many setbacks in its history and changed hands numerous times. At one time, the Ithaca 37 was renamed the Model 87, although it was soon changed back in one of many ownership changes. Production paused in 2005 when Ithaca once again changed hands. Production has resumed in Upper Sandusky, Ohio.

    According to an article by the Ithaca Times dated June 11th, 2003, the one-millionth Model 37 was produced in 1968; and as of 2003, more than 2,000,000 Model 37s have been produced. The Ithaca 37 is the only pre–World War II shotgun still in production.

    One disadvantage is that barrel interchangeability is limited by the magazine tube coming in several different lengths and the barrel mounting lug has to be attached to suit. That also makes fitting a new longer or shorter mag tube require all new barrels as well.

    However, it’s a reliable pump gun and certainly one of the better designs out there. Not that pump guns differ a whole lot-any of the popular ones well set up will do fine for any use to which you’d put a pump gun.

  123. anon[389] • Disclaimer says:
    @Bardon Kaldian

    Nobel prize for math was forbidden by Nobel. One of my math professors explained it by anecdote: Nobel beloved woman was taken by some fellow who was math professor…

  124. Anon87 says:
    @Steve Sailer

    Everyone please stop talking about the Finger Lakes. It’s a huge dump and you don’t want to visit.

    Partially joking, because it has been on the upswing. It’s awash in wineries, distilleries, breweries, and meaderies. At some point drunk driving accidents might give it a black eye. Which might make the housing affordable again. Unless you have a few mill, good luck getting any waterfront. Pricing out most people when back in the day your average Kodak employee could probably swing a modest summer home.

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