The Dim-Post

October 20, 2010

Links of the day, some people have WAY too much time on their hands edition

Filed under: books,tv — danylmc @ 11:52 am

On the economics of Seinfeld:

In this episode, Kramer is donating blood and saving it in a blood bank for future use. He becomes dissatisfied with high fees at the blood bank, and decides to keep it at home instead. In the meantime, Jerry nicks his jugular with an Exacto knife and needs blood. He awakens in the hospital with three pints of Kramer’s blood in him. This illustrates that when savers save, their assets don’t sit idle; they are immediately channeled to some productive investment most often by the banking system or another intermediary (such as the blood bank in this example), but sometimes through direct transfer (such is the case with direct purchase of stocks and bonds, and in this example, the direct transfer of Kramer’s blood to Jerry).

On why didn’t the eagles fly Sam and Frodo to Mordor?

We do know that Sauron is capable of some degree of control over Mt. Doom, since it is said to be at his bidding that the cloud of smoke and ash covers the sky. We do not know whether he would be able to cause Mt. Doom to erupt at a moment’s notice, without first building up pressure, etc.

Even if Sauron can cause Mt. Doom to erupt immediately, we know from the actual story that the eagles are capable of navigating into Mordor and locating and rescuing Frodo and Sam, despite the major eruption which was taking place. Even if Sauron did manage to catch the eagles in the eruption, however, could this melt the Ring? If Sauron does manage to figure out that the eagles are carrying the Ringbearer, he might opt not to cause Mt. Doom to erupt, just for this very reason.

 

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26 Comments »

  1. on the second quote and link, i think we can safely summarize in one word: anorak.

    Comment by che tibby — October 20, 2010 @ 12:08 pm

  2. Lord of the Rings: The Pamphlet.

    Comment by marsoe — October 20, 2010 @ 12:23 pm

  3. These are important issues. How can we rest safe without knowing?

    Comment by Rob — October 20, 2010 @ 12:49 pm

  4. The Sienfeld episode is actually a really nice, simple, example of why the vocal “money-is-debt banks-want-to-enslvae-you nut-jobs” are… erm, Nut Jobs.

    If people are to save, they have to be rewarded for doing so. Conversely, there’s no logic in lending without penalty. Interest rates do exactly that.

    Comment by Phil — October 20, 2010 @ 1:06 pm

  5. So… does that mean that Jerry will have to give blood back to Kramer, with interest?

    Comment by helenalex — October 20, 2010 @ 1:52 pm

  6. All the eagles do is rescue folk, with a bit of fighting sometimes to effect the rescue.
    The possible exception is the battle of the five armies, and that wasn’t in Mordor.
    I think the argument against sending powerful folk like elves and eagles into Mordor is covered in the text.

    Comment by Roger Parkinson — October 20, 2010 @ 2:26 pm

  7. “…So… does that mean that Jerry will have to give blood back to Kramer, with interest?…”

    No. What it means is Jerry will establish an arbitrary value for the PROMISE he will give the blood back to Kramer at some future date, then on the medical derivatives market combine it with a whole lot of bad blood from CJD infected households, get his mate George Constanza’s brokerage company to certify it all as AAA sub-prime blood investment bonds, then sell these bundled blood bonds into the futures market at a risk discount as innovative product called a synthetic EPO. Then the investment banks will buy these AAA synthetic EPO futures in the knowledge that they’ve been rated as AAA by a reputable firm, and are therefore as safe as a government blood bank, re-package them with some bio-hazard waste from the skip out the back of a liposuction facility, and sell them to an Icelandic bank that is actually just a shell vehicle for a British bank funded by Saudis who develop property in Dublin.

    Using the massive paper profits from these sophisticed bundled AAA blood bond products, the Icelandic bank will then lend to an American the money to allow them to send to Jerry money an unsolicited credit card with a $50,000 credit limit to PURCHASE new blood sourced on the free market at incredibly cheap rates and provided by desperately poor Latino peasants in Guatamala.

    This is called globalised investment capitalism, and it has been calculated that every litre of Jerry’s blood was worth $1 000 000 a litres in the weeks immediately preceding the great global blood crisis of 2008.

    Comment by Sanctuary — October 20, 2010 @ 2:41 pm

  8. Gah!

    “…the Icelandic bank will then lend to an American bank the money to allow them to send to Jerry money in an unsolicited credit card with a $50,000 credit limit…”

    Comment by Sanctuary — October 20, 2010 @ 2:45 pm

  9. How the Lord of the Rings should have ended http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1yqVD0swvWU

    Comment by lyndon — October 20, 2010 @ 3:17 pm

  10. Tolkien mentioned in his letters why didn’t use the eagles more – but honestly, that Crist guy’s plot nitpicking just takes all the fun out of a book.

    Comment by Ataahua — October 20, 2010 @ 3:21 pm

  11. And the reason was?

    Comment by insider — October 20, 2010 @ 4:38 pm

  12. @Sanctuary:

    Oh, well I’m glad you’ve cleared that up.

    Comment by Helenalex — October 20, 2010 @ 4:50 pm

  13. “Conversely, there’s no logic in lending without penalty. Interest rates do exactly that.”

    this confuses me.

    not as much as wondering why the ring wraiths weren’t all over Bilbo when he’s been wearing the damn ring almost non-stop for about 80 years, while Frodo can’t wear it for 5 secs without getting a knife in him, but you get that.

    Comment by Che Tibby — October 20, 2010 @ 9:21 pm

  14. well well well, I guess this is an opportunity to ask my own geeky question – why does Bilbo Baggins look older than Frodo Baggins?

    And yes, I know that Bilbo actually is older than Frodo. IIRC Frodo is 48; Bilbo is Eleventy-One, but he has had the ring since he was 31, and the ring stops you aging, so he should still look 31, so he should look younger than Frodo.

    Comment by kahikatea — October 20, 2010 @ 10:33 pm

  15. “why didn’t the eagles fly Sam and Frodo to Mordor?”

    Quite simple:

    We wouldnt have a book/radio play/movie otherwise.

    Comment by millsy — October 20, 2010 @ 10:41 pm

  16. but seriously, Tolkein was never so much about plot as about language. Wasn’t the whole thing a pretext for him to develop all those “lost” languages?

    Comment by NeilM — October 20, 2010 @ 10:57 pm

  17. Why didn’t the eagles fly Sam and Frodo to Mordor?

    Chemtrails.

    Comment by Gregor W — October 20, 2010 @ 11:14 pm

  18. not as much as wondering why the ring wraiths weren’t all over Bilbo when he’s been wearing the damn ring almost non-stop for about 80 years, while Frodo can’t wear it for 5 secs without getting a knife in him

    Because they didn’t know to come looking for him until Gollum tattled, which was around when everything started into motion, and the Ringwraiths were then sent to the Shirt.

    why does Bilbo Baggins look older than Frodo Baggins?

    And yes, I know that Bilbo actually is older than Frodo. IIRC Frodo is 48; Bilbo is Eleventy-One, but he has had the ring since he was 31, and the ring stops you aging, so he should still look 31, so he should look younger than Frodo.

    He did look very young in the book, it was one of the reasons he was considered ‘odd’ and not quite respecatble, then aged fast after he gave the ring away. He was much frailer at the end of the trilogy than the beginning. Also, he didn’t wear the ring ALL the time, so he still aged.

    Comment by Flynn — October 20, 2010 @ 11:27 pm

  19. Shire. SHIRE. Not shirt. They had those ragged black cloaky things, they didn’t need shirts.

    Comment by Flynn — October 20, 2010 @ 11:28 pm

  20. he was a terrific writter, this is beautiful –

    She lifted up her hand and from the ring that she wore there issued a great light that illuminated her alone and left all else dark. She stood before Frodo seeming now tall beyond measurement, and beautiful beyond enduring, terrible and worshipful. Then she let her hand fall, and the light faded, and suddenly she laughed again, and lo! she was shrunken: a slender elf-woman, clad in simple white whose gentle voice was soft and sad.

    “I pass the test,” she said. “I will diminish, and go into the West
    and remain Galadriel”

    Comment by NeilM — October 20, 2010 @ 11:32 pm

  21. Re post title:

    http://www.thejohnnycashproject.com/#/explore/TopRated

    it’s not a bad thing.

    Comment by Pascal's bookie — October 21, 2010 @ 7:27 am

  22. Problem is Neil that you have to wade through dire dwarfish epic poems in the Council of Elrond to get there.

    A bit like Wagner: wonderful moments but awful quarters of an hour.

    Comment by insider — October 21, 2010 @ 10:07 am

  23. re 10: “…that Crist guy’s plot nitpicking just takes all the fun out of a book.”

    Not quite all of the fun. There’s still the bath scene, and the fox.
    (you did say the book not the movie, right?)

    Comment by Roger Parkinson — October 21, 2010 @ 10:09 am

  24. Bilbo turned 51 when he arrived at Esgaroth.

    Comment by Repton — October 21, 2010 @ 10:18 am

  25. @insider:

    “The Eagles are a dangerous ‘machine’. I have used them sparingly, and that is the absolute limit of their credibility or usefulness. ”
    – Letter 210, J.R.R. Tolkien

    As the Encyclopedia of Arda puts it: “And that is the real reason the Ring-bearer didn’t travel to Mordor by air. Leaving aside any logistical or strategic advantages it might have had, bringing in the Eagles would have made The Lord of the Rings much less of a epic story, and that’s surely reason enough to leave them out.”

    http://www.glyphweb.com/arda/e/eagles.html

    Which is pretty much what millsy said.

    Roger: We do love the bath scenes, hmm?

    Comment by Ataahua — October 21, 2010 @ 2:43 pm

  26. “not as much as wondering why the ring wraiths weren’t all over Bilbo when he’s been wearing the damn ring almost non-stop for about 80 years, while Frodo can’t wear it for 5 secs without getting a knife in him, but you get that.”
    Cos sauron was sort-of-dead or weak or something and it wasn’t until he regained his strength that he began to call the ring. That’s what caused gollum to drop it. Until then, it was “lost”. I can only watch the intro to the first movie before I am bored out of my tree.

    Comment by Clunking Fist — October 21, 2010 @ 7:05 pm


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