Monthly Archives: February 2010

gen. engr

I briefly checked out a number of sources regarding the cost
of genetic engineering through in vitro fertilization to select which features
you may want your child to have, and the range was between $10,000 and $20,000.
A huge chunk of this country doesn’t even have half that in their bank
accounts. I’m fairly certain that a bank wouldn’t be inclined to give out loans
for a luxury like genetic engineering to low income families, and even if it
did, if you can’t afford it, then there are probably more pressing matters that
you cant afford (a house or a car perhaps).

So what happens? The kids who would have already been born
at a social and financial advantage now find themselves physically more suited
for success, and the population becomes more stratified.

The weird part though is wondering whether or not a kid
could grow up knowing that he isn’t exactly how he was intended to be (or how
God made him to be), or maybe that he’d have a greater sense of privilege and
less of actual achievement and thus of real ability.

But still -if I knew I could prevent a kid from terminal
illness, I think I might.


party scheduling/IFC policy

I had a moment to investigate the IFC’s policy on social functions, and a few points stood out to me (as I have yet to see or hear of these being kept):

Alcohol Distribution 

4. Individually wrapped snack foods must be readily available at all functions at all times when alcohol 

is being served. 

5. Individually canned or bottled alternative beverages must be readily available at all functions at all 

times when alcohol is being served. 

Liquor Policy 

4. Liquor may not be served for more than two hours. 

5. Liquor may not be served after 12:00AM.

But I started to question the IFC’s motivation for the following:

Section 7: Article B

Hosting Limitations 

1. Parties may not begin before 10:00 pm and shall be hosted for a period of time no greater than four 

(4) hours.  Parties must end by 2:00 am. 

If a party only starts at 10pm (and it’s not as though anyone wants to be the first person there), and students are going to be done class on a given Friday by 3:20 (not to mention Saturdays, which for most kids are open scheduled), then 6 and a half hours is a pretty long time to wait to start the weekend.

My guess is that the intent is to minimize the amount of time spent by partygoers in the presence of alcohol, but realistically, students are going to start using alcohol roughly 2 hours after dinner; so probably between 8 and 8:30. This means that between 8:30pm and 1:30am (since parties aren’t allowed to serve alcohol during the last half hour), students are going to have about 5 and a half hours of exposure to alcohol.

My guess is that if organized parties started earlier, actually starting by 9:30 -rather than 11 (which is about when they start now), then students would rather be having fun with a bigger group of people at that time, and thus wouldn’t spend as long (and maybe eventually, any time) pre-gaming. Parties could actually stop serving alcohol at the designated time (12am), and it’s not as though people would want to leave a party at 12 to go “post-game”.

Problem solved.

Except for the hundreds of off campus, non-fraternity parties.


societal evolution

Why has college drinking evolved so dramatically over the
past 40 years? Chris (Randby) made an interesting point when he said that guys
in the 60s still had the same chemical and psychological makeup that we do now,
but certainly drank less and were probably a lot more respectful of women.

But it’s more recent than that. Pre-gaming didn’t exist in
the 90s, and it definitely wouldn’t have been considered ‘cool’ to black out
from intoxication (though with the way kids laugh it off now, you might think
it was). So what is it?

In the 60s it took a certain type of kid to smoke pot, but
you’d probably be hard pressed to find a majority of graduating high school
seniors that haven’t already had some kind of encounter with marijuana. The
pornography industry has blown up (in accessibility, size and content) in the
past decade alone, and our (primarily males) desire for realistic graphic
violence on TV and video games has changed the standard for acceptable viewing
content across the world. Let’s not even start on the lyrical content of popular

It would seem that we (American, and western society in
general) are becoming exponentially desirous of the next level in virtually
every category of self-satisfying pursuits, and are no longer content with what’s
been the norm for hundreds of years.

But why? I can name contributors to the movement -notably corporate
America’s rampant use of the Internet to search our tastes and preferences and
to market toward them accordingly  -but I’m stuck for finding the real cause. For now anyway.

Still; as we know from our interactions with each other, in such a polarization of what are and what should be commendable pursuits, there are people that want more than what MTV and the rest of our culture has for us.