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Free Minds & Free Markets

The iPhone Crime Wave

What Gotham’s gobbled Apples reveal about the nation’s falling crime rates

During the last 20 years, law enforcement officials, criminologists, journalists, and other cultural observers have attempted to solve the mystery of the nation’s declining crime rates. Was the post-1990 drop in murders and other serious crimes due to new police tactics that concentrated resources in unsafe neighborhoods? Maybe. Was it longer prison sentences? The waning crack trade? Increased availability of abortions? Maybe, possibly, perhaps.

Bucking the trend, New York City in 2012 experienced its first overall increase in major crimes in 20 years. But this time, Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Police Commissioner Ray Kelly have decisively fingered the culprit: It was Steve Jobs. Or, rather, the devices Apple produced under his watch.

According to New York Police Department (NYPD) statistics, there were 3,484 more major crimes in 2012 than there were in 2011. (These numbers compare the first 51 weeks of each year.) The rise in the total number of Apple-related thefts —which occurred during burglaries, robberies, and grand larcenies —exceeded that number. (The NYPD keeps track of seven categories of crime that it deems “major.” They are murder, rape, robbery, felony assault, burglary, grand larceny, and grand larceny auto. It keeps track of three categories of crime that it deems “minor.” They are petit larceny, misdemeanor assault, and misdemeanor sex crimes.)

 “If you took out thefts of Apple products—not Galaxies, Samsungs—just Apple products, our total [major] crime rate would be lower than it was last year,” Bloomberg told the New York Post

Presumably New York City’s criminals are snapping up iPods, iPhones, and iPads not because they prefer Apple’s battery life management over that of its competitors but because the resale market for Apple devices is robust and predictable. According to The Wall Street Journal, high tariffs in countries like Brazil can drive up the price of a new entry-level iPhone 4s to $1,000, so used ones go for as much as $400 there. Here in the U.S., secondhand dealers buying in bulk on Craigs­list pay as much as $500 for a used iPhone 5. Demand is strong. Resale prices are high. There are millions of iPhones out there, but unlike so many other products in our age of plenty, they have not yet become too abundant to steal. 

With other brands, theft is an iffier proposition. That snatchable seven-inch non-Apple tablet could have an initial retail price anywhere between $99 and $499, and there may not be much of a secondhand market. This magnifies crime’s inherent risks: No one wants to be the chump who earns a stretch in the Big House for strong-arming some cheapskate out of what upon closer inspection turns out to be a Nook Simple Touch. 

Can New York City’s Apple- picking epidemic tell us something about crime in general? Most theories about America’s long-term crime trends share a common characteristic: They attribute the drop to some factor that has depleted the nation’s supply of criminals. One theory, for example, holds that because individuals between the ages of 15 and 24 tend to commit crimes at higher rates than people in other age groups, crime started dropping when the country’s median age began to rise, thus leaving fewer young people per capita to commit crimes. Another theory stresses the correlation between crime and high levels of lead in the bloodstream. When leaded gas was banned, this theory suggests, childhood exposure to high lead emissions began to drop as well, which eventually led to fewer adults with the sort of neurological damage that is associated with criminal behavior. 

None of the major crime hypotheses pays much attention to the ways in which the material landscape of America has changed. Yet such changes obviously have at least some impact on crime. 

Car theft wasn’t a problem until cars were invented. Apple theft barely existed in New York City a decade ago; according to Ray Kelly, the police department recorded just 86 Apple-related crimes in all of 2002. Since then, the company has made its products so portable they’re nearly ubiquitous in public, thus prompting New York City’s criminals to thug different. (On a more positive note, subway thefts involving boomboxes, Sony Walkmen, and evening editions of the New York Post are doubtlessly on the wane.)

But if a new, highly desirable product can lead to a dramatic increase in crime, perhaps the opposite is true as well. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “there was a dramatic increase in obesity in the United States from 1990 through 2010,” exactly the same time in which the country began to experience a dramatic decrease in crime rates. Like the drop in crime, the rise in obesity has provoked many hypotheses but few definitive answers. One credible notion, however, is that waistlines have grown out of increasing affluence and abundance. Food got cheaper and far more accessible. Entertainment options and labor-saving devices proliferated. Life got easier, more convenient, and in many ways, far more pleasurable—so much so that we tend to opt for seconds of everything (more pizza, more video games, more social networking) as long as it doesn’t require much exertion. 

Think about the ways life has changed since 1990, and specifically about the ways these changes affect young men, who historically have been the cohort most likely to commit crimes. TV sports programming has expanded exponentially. Video games have become far more plentiful and immersive. Hip-hop evolved into a multibillion-dollar lifestyle industry encompassing music, fashion, and more. The Internet provided free universal porn. The rise of big-box retailers like Walmart and Target made a wide range of goods increasingly affordable. 

Given that millions of well- paying jobs in the manufacturing and construction sectors have been lost during the last 20 years, and that this loss has its greatest impact on the prospects of young men, these consolations may seem meager. Yet look at how young men are expressing their discontent. Murder rates have dropped. Rape rates have dropped. Property crimes have dropped.

Maybe this is all because of lower lead levels. Or maybe, in the same way that technologically driven abundance has made us fatter, it has also made us more content, giving us more opportunities for self-expression, more opportunities to develop meaningful social connections, and more material goods that are so easily obtainable that they blunt the economic imperatives of crime.

Consider what’s happening in New York City with all those non-Apple devices. Physically, they’re no harder to steal than Apples, and there are plenty of them to be found on New York subways. Yet because many non-Apple devices are so inexpensive, they are relatively easy to replace (or perhaps easy to live without), undermining the gadgets’ value from the thief’s perspective. So even as these items proliferate, the rate at which they get stolen is actually dropping.

Apple, meanwhile, is an ironic outlier. The creative tools with which it equipped the world’s designers, developers, and media producers played a crucial role in enabling our new world of super-affordable material wealth. Yet despite the increasing ubiquity of iPhones and iPads, worldwide demand for these products remains so strong that they’re still not universally accessible. As a result, they’re still worth stealing.

Of course, if theft of Apple devices increases so much that their air of exclusivity begins to seem like a design flaw, a solution is readily at hand. By flooding the market with bargain-bin iPhone knock-offs, the company could instantly protect its marquee products in ways that anti-theft apps like “Find My iPhone” would be hard-pressed to match. In the end, abundance is the most powerful form of security.  

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  • ||

    There's some speculation that the reduction of lead in the environment also contributed to the decrease in crime.

  • ||

    I should RTWholeFA before commenting.

  • ||

    Reduction of lead in the environment....cite?

  • ||

  • ||

    I am skeptical.

  • SIV||

    Must be all the paint chips you're eating.

  • mad libertarian guy||

    those women would never have gotten pregnant in the past

    Pure fucking nonsense.

  • ||

    Half of the babies born in the puritan colonies were to born out of wedlock to underage girls.

    People are no different now than they ever were. there was no magic time in history when storks brought babies, no one lost their virginity until after their kids were out of school, and lollipops grew on trees.

  • phandaal||

    I disagree. There was definitely a time when lollipops grew on trees.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

  • Dweebston||

    NSFGF

  • ||

    I would like to lodge a complaint about your post, Heroic Mulatto. The picture did not resemble the description at all and I would like a refund for the electricity spent clicking on your fraudulent link.

  • Johnimo||

    Yeah, that's what the storks ate. They thrived on all those lollipops. Then, global warming melted all the lollipops and ... voila .... the storks all died off.

  • ||

    Of course you're obsessed with abortion, you blithering fucking racist scumbag idiot.

    Let me ask you: you are banned time and time again, yet you keep coming back. Why are you so pathetic? You do realize how utterly, viciously pathetic you are, right? Come on, go look in the mirror. Face your useless existence and then kill yourself. Seriously, go for it. We're all cheering you on. I suggest a shotgun.

  • General Butt Naked||

    I suggest a shotgun.

    All these years, and all these despicable comments later, and Episiarch turns out to be Joe Biden.

    I'm shocked, truly shocked.

  • Irish||

    Appalling logical fallacies like 'Black people commit a large number of crimes. Therefore, it must be due to a genetic, savage predisposition to violence.'

    Notice how you haven't bothered connecting those two sentences with such bourgeois trappings as 'evidence,' 'proof,' or 'reason?' These words don't find their way into any of your racist little screeds. But Epi's the one who uses logical fallacies? Alright.

  • Irish||

    Actually, that's the exact argument you use, so I'm in no way using a strawman. Your arguments in favor of eugenics, which I still can't believe you actually admit to supporting, show that you believe wholeheartedly that violence, low IQ and the like are all completely related to genetics, and not upbringing.

    I'm not using a strawman argument. There is no racist argument that you are unwilling to use, so I don't even know if it's possible to construct a strawman of American, since you appear to be a living, breathing racist stereotype.

    Also, before you go touting Jean Philippe Rushton's book, you should probably know that virtually every other biologist on the planet has heavily criticized Race, Evolution, and Behavior for using r/K theory incorrectly.

    Here's a link to an abstract of an article whose author says:

    This article examines both the flaws in the general theory, and specifically Rushton's application of that same theory to human data. It concludes that neither Rushton's use of the theory nor the data that he has assembled could possibly test any meaningful hypotheses concerning human evolution and/or the distribution of genetic variation relating to reproductive strategies or `intelligence', however defined.

    So, other than the fact that his theory makes no sense and can't actually test anything, I'm sure his book is great.

  • Irish||

    Small disagreements like 'Blacks cause all the crimes and we should use an early 20th century pseudoscience to eliminate their bad genetics.'

    Truly, Epi is a monster. If only we were all like you!

  • General Butt Naked||

    The only people I've heard episiarch call horrible are: Wesly Crusher Fans, people who got to Michael Bay movies, and those that enjoy deep dish pizza.

    And he's right, if you're in one of those groups you are a horrible human being.

  • Irish||

    I'm sorry we don't all like eating pizza that consists of tomato sauce and cheese smeared on top of cardboard, you thin crust pizza loving monster.

  • General Butt Naked||

    Hey if you like casserole, that's fine.

    Just don't call it "pizza".

    You really should go back to where you came from.

  • Irish||

    Chicago?

    Okay. I'll make sure to grab some real pizza at Lou Malnati's well I'm there. If you give me your address, I'll send you a T.V. box slathered in bacon grease, since that's apparently the kind of 'pizza' that you like.

  • General Butt Naked||

    Chicago?

    Never heard of it. Why don't you try speaking AMERICAN?!

    Lou Malnati's

    Another ethnic type name. Big surprise.

  • Irish||

    Chicago?
    Never heard of it. Why don't you try speaking AMERICAN?!

    The word Chicago derives from the language of the Illinois Indian tribe, and means 'Wild Leek.' So actually, the word Chicago is SUPER AMERICAN since it comes from people who were here before we were.

    Why don't you take your fucking immigrant language back to England, oppressor.

  • General Butt Naked||

    Savages didn't have words.

    Those were just anglicized grunts.

    Your welcome.

  • Archduke Pantsfan||

    Your welcome.

    The irony is delicious.

  • General Butt Naked||

    Dangit. I almost never do that.

    Not that I expect someone of Irish's savage heritage to pick up on it.

  • Killazontherun||

    I enjoyed some deep dish slices with Wil Wheaton once. The sauce was sugary, practically a tomato glaze. So yummy! After which we caught a Michael Bay flick about gay cowboys eating pudding.

  • Killazontherun||

    By the way, an actual tomato glaze sauce that's tasty with meatballs.

    Take a bottle of Ragu, regular. Add a half a cup of brown sugar. Spread on a cooking sheet. Let it carmelize on a low heat in the oven. Scrape it in to a bowl. Crush the solid mix with a meat tenderizer. Place in a blender with half a cup of vodka, two cups of heavy cream, a stick of butter, two minced garlic springs and fresh basil. Mix well, pour into pan, bring to a boil, add a little water, turn the heat low, and let it cook for a good fifteen minutes. So yummy!

  • ||

    "Epi is the worst commented here. ...... And he is basically a feminist."

    Huh?

    Epi is a jerk alright, but my kind of jerk. As for your analysis of his comments, you are dead wrong. He can be very insightful and articulate.

    Like many here he is full of snarky bullshit because one tires of making the same arguments to idiots over and over....

    I have no idea what being a feminist has to do with anything because I dont know what that term means to you.

    So...tell us...why do you think you are so reviled here and he is not?

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    Epi is hardly "insightful".

  • Irish||

    From what I can gather, you've been saying the same things without so much as a vocabulary change for about 5 years.

    Pot, kettle etc.

  • ||

    Epi is hardly "insightful".

    BWAHHHHHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!

    Hey Shreeeek, I see what you did there.

  • ||

    Coming from a turdpolisher that names himself after an object designed to be stuck up someone's ass, I can only laugh.

  • Killazontherun||

    He must mean Epi's belief that you should treat women like human beings makes him a feminist. I have never seen Epi give any quarter to the collectivist who see everything through the prism of man hatred that now defines feminist.

  • ||

    So far two retarded sockpuppets have made the argument that Epi is a dumb poopyhead. The serious commenters disagree.

    AMERICA YOU DECIDE!

  • wakeup||

    I thought Epi was the sockpuppets!

  • General Butt Naked||

    Don't be silly.

    A poopyhead like episiarch doesn't have the focus to keep up all of these puppets. I think it's you!

  • ||

    You got me. I live for writing retarded shit on the internet.

  • ||

    OH NO I'M USING THE WRONG ACCOUNT!

    MY SECRET IS REVEALED. I AM ALL THE SOCKPUPPETS.

  • General Butt Naked||

    I was talking to wakeup, but you seem awful defensive about this heller.

    ...or should I say MARY!?

  • ||

    Yeah see I thought I was in my wakeup account so I answered as if you were talking to me. Oops.

    Now I will have to kill you to keep my secret safe.

  • StinkEye||

    "I thought Epi was the sockpuppets!"

    Warty is Epi's sockpuppet you fool! And absolutely everyone else who posts on Reason is Mary. This entire website only exists inside of Shreeks mind. These two posting factions are representatives of the multiple personalities that stiff him on the rent there....

  • Sevo||

    "This entire website only exists inside of Shreeks mind."
    I'm a figment of shreek's fantasies?!
    The HORROR!

  • ||

    So when one gets "banned" from the commentariat, is all that's required to sneak back in a new email address and moniker or is there more to it? Is it an IP address?

  • ||

    It's an IP ban.

  • ||

    Which any 10 year old aspiring troll knows how to bypass these days.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    What is this bait and switch? I was drawn in to read about the Big Apple's big Apple problem, only to get paragraph after paragraph hypothesizing why everyone in America is a fatty these days.

    Aaaaaaaaaaanyway, has the proliferation of handheld video recording devices like the iPhone mayhaps added to the numbers, in that there are recordings of criminal activities leading to more reporting perhaps and more police following up possibly?

  • ||

    I've noticed the crime rate is inversely correlated to government spending.

    Government spending goes up as it gives its citizenry more and more free shit. When given free shit there is no longer a reason to steal. I mean why would I steal and risk being caught when the government will do it for me without repercussion?

    SO:

    Yay, government spending. It solved our crime problems. And if we just spend moar, we can clearly eliminate crime.

    Why do libertarians support crime?

  • BigT||

    Marxists look at everything from this prism of rationality, they don't understand what it is like to be a low-IQ savage.

    Please inform us, as you seem to know.

  • ||

    Luckily we have Amerifag to tell us exactly what it's like to be a low-IQ savage.

  • ||

    seriously, take your racist trolling b.s. somewhere else.

  • Acosmist||

    Is he right or wrong? "Racist" is not a truth-value.

  • Irish||

    Shut the fuck up, racist part II.

  • VG Zaytsev||

    Yes he's wrong.

    And his screed is so full of bullshit that fuck off is the best response.

  • Xenocles||

    No. He's not wrong. He's "not even wrong."

  • nilecroc||

    Are you retarded?

  • ||

    Well, duh. This isn't even a decent rehash of arguments from intelligent racists.

  • nilecroc||

    Yes

  • Irish||

    The majority of murders are also committed by blacks against blacks. So yes, you're wrong that we should be scared of those scary negroes because they aren't a threat to us, unless we're living in a welfare addled inner city.

    You should probably read Thomas Sowell's arguments about how the welfare state has been a primary cause in the collapse of the inner cities, the implosion of black families and the increase in crime. Unfortunately, that would require you to read a book by a scary, black Cornell professor, so I assume you'll be staying far away from his books.

  • General Butt Naked||

    Also, turf wars over illicit markets by ethnic and racial minorities is nothing new and not peculiar to any one race or ethnicity.

  • Irish||

    The majority of murders are also committed by blacks against blacks. So yes, you're wrong that we should be scared of those scary negroes because they aren't a threat to us, unless we're living in a welfare addled inner city.

    You should probably read Thomas Sowell's arguments about how the welfare state has been a primary cause in the collapse of the inner cities, the implosion of black families and the increase in crime. Unfortunately, that would require you to read a book by a scary, black Cornell professor, so I assume you'll be staying far away from his books.

  • Contrarian P||

    I'm curious where you get your statistics. Where did you find the data about the ethnicity of the majority of murderers? Is that those convicted of murder? Is it based on those in prison for murder? Are your numbers based on reports of perpetrator ethnicity by witnesses? Does that include convictions for lesser crimes like manslaughter or acquittals that might result from having a superior defense attorney, which Caucasians, given their generally higher levels of wealth, would have a greater likelihood of employing? Go ahead, please reveal your sources.

  • Contrarian P||

    You also ignore the example of prohibition, which is the closest analogue we have to the current drug war. There's not much argument that prohibition was a failure, resulting in increases in homicides, the overall crime rate, police corruption, and the incarceration rate without appreciably reducing the consumption of alcohol. By the way, the closure of the nation's breweries and distilleries put many Americans out of work. When prohibition was repealed, crime rates began to return to their previous levels. Ending the drug war clearly can be seen as closely related to the repeal of prohibition. There's no reasonable reason to assume that crime wouldn't go down, other than your non-white races are animals theory.

  • Sevo||

    "as if these people"
    Sniff, sniff. Man, that fish is well over three days old!

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    You know, there are cultures out there where they will kill anyone who doesn't pay them money. Fuckin' savages, man!

  • Sevo||

    The IRS, right?

  • Contrarian P||

    Your analysis also has a serious problem in that if your assertion of a direct cause effect relationship between race and crime existed, one would expect crime to be much lower than the United States in countries with proportionally larger white populations and much higher in countries with larger black populations. In fact, this isn't true. The murder rate in Russia, which isn't exactly known for blacks and hispanics, is much higher than the United States. The murder rate in Morocco, which is certainly majority non-white, is much lower than in the United States. Sweden has more rapes per capita than the United States. Belgium has more robberies. Scotland has far more assaults. If race were determinate, as you seem to believe, these numbers could not be what they are. Sorry, but your premise is demonstrably wrong.

  • Kyfho Myoba||

    I'd be careful about Swedens definition of rape (see Julian Assange).

  • ||

    Mayo is pus, pure and simple.

  • sloopyinca||

    Oh, yeah? Well, you're pus!

  • ||

    No, YOU'RE pus, pus!

  • A Serious Man||

    It's pus all the way down.

  • ||

    That's why I don't eat that mayo shit.

    A friend of mine from Bocuse taught me the right way to make it fresh during one of my visits to Lyon- we used free range eggs from a local farmer, Provencal oil, the whole bit. Know what? It was still pus. Just really expensive pus.

  • ||

    BTW, to be clear, I support artisianl food stuff, even when it's pus; I truly wish you the best of luck with this. My wife (also a libertarian, ahem) makes ciabatta, baguettes, and even German rye bread, all of our mozzarella and ricotta, and managed to whip up a pretty impressive first try at requeson. Grows all our veggies in our back yard.

    Given that we live in IL, no way she's ever going to try to sell any of it.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    Nice. I love a nice, fresh, crusty bread. Unfortunately, my wife comes from the land of rice, so she doesn't know how to bake. I'd learn if I had the time.

  • ||

    It really couldn't be easier than this, I've made better bread using different methods, but this hits the sweet spot on effort and quality.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    Thanks! I'll check it out.

  • Archduke Pantsfan||

    You eat bread? you monster.

  • ||

    Artsanal bread even. I'm waiting for the oven to preheat to throw some Kamut loves in (bit of an experiment to take to Easter).

  • ||

    In our house, I'm the one in charge of the rice-based stuff. Mrs. OMWC is great with wheat products, but relies on me for Chinese, Japanese, Thai, and Indian. She is sadly cilantro-intolerant, but has a chile tolerance which makes up for that.

    And she also thinks mayo is pus.

  • General Butt Naked||

    Is she one of the unlucky few for whom cilantro tastes like sucking on a bar of Dial soap?

    I'm like that. If a recipe calls for cilantro and I use 1/5th of what's called for it's okay and adds flavor; any more and the food tastes like shampoo.

    I also have a very high tolerance for heat, wonder if it's connected?

  • Scruffy Nerfherder||

    Intolerance for cilantro? That's a crying shame.

  • General Butt Naked||

    Yeah, I think it's a genetic taste-bud thing. To me, too much and it tastes like soap.

    A tiny amount is good, though.

  • ||

  • General Butt Naked||

    It appears that white privilege ends at cilantro.

    Like I said, I think it's more of a sensitivity thing. I like it, and can taste it if there is a small amount.

    As how some people think that frank's red hot is unbearably hot.

  • Fatty Bolger||

    Same here. Raw cilantro tastes like soap to me.

  • ||

    She says Ivory soap, very specific about it. Now I discount the chile-cilantro thing since they are natural partners in so many spicy cuisines. Not to mention my own love for both.

    Kills me, since I make a really, really mean Thai jungle curry.

  • VG Zaytsev||

    When are you going to start making urban honey?

  • ||

    What's the shelf life like on the flavored mayos?

  • juris imprudent||

    You're just mad that Michigan is still playing while tOSU went home. I'd gloat about that if I were a Michigan man, but I'm not.

  • ||

    Mayo is love, mayo is life.

  • ||

    Mayo is pus.

  • General Butt Naked||

    Oooooh, chipotle!

  • Ted S.||

    Is that like Destiny's child?

  • sloopyinca||

    Thanks, man. Yes, we're quite proud of our creations.

  • ||

    Do they have the proper government permits and licences to be selling hipster foodstuffs?

    Has the FDA inspected it? I think not.

    BTW, I'm sure it cannot compare with Miracle Whip.

  • sloopyinca||

    BTW, I'm sure it cannot compare with Miracle Whip.

    I sure hope not.

  • Ted S.||

    Only monsters would refer to Hellmann's mayonnaise by any other name. :-)

  • Xenocles||

    They're west coast; it's Best Foods over there.

  • Ted S.||

    Uh, don't you think I knew that? That's what the smiley was for.

  • Xenocles||

    ::shrugs::

  • Xenocles||

    Seriously though, good luck being a food-production startup in this regulatory hell.

  • A Serious Man||

    Not a mayo guy, but I might try some if you made it the proper libertarian way.

    Did you make sure to grow your orphans for 48 days before grinding them into the mayo?

    And tell me you remembered to add the tears of oppressed feminists for that salty touch.

  • Irish||

    Time out: The orphans also need to be properly strapped down so that their muscles atrophy and become soft and pliant.

    If we're going to do this, let's do it right.

  • Hollywood||

    This is important. I hate it when I make cream of orphan and it turns out gristle-ly.

  • juris imprudent||

    It won't be gristle-ly if you remember to boil S L O W L Y.

  • Ted S.||

    You know, you don't have to leave the image its original size. Does anybody have a monitor with that ridiculous a resolution?

  • Ted S.||

    At the very least, under a megabyte. It should be possible to get images quite a bit smaller. For example, somebody used this JPG of Pussy Galore in another forum. 475*413 pixels, and a whopping 38 KB.

    (By the same token, PNG generally shouldn't be used for photos because it takes more memory to display photo-type images than JPG without much increase in quality.

  • Generic Stranger||

    I usually make mine so they're around 800 pixels wide. Also, you need to rotate it 90 degrees clockwise.

  • Ted S.||

    Gotta love CBS' fuck you to tennis fans. Because the meaningless first two minutes of a college basketball game are more important than the climax of the tennis match they cut out of.

    Of course, if tennis players like Murray and Ferrer, and especially Nadal and Djokovic, would obey the rule on time between points and not chronically fucking waste time and bitch when they get a time violation warning, the matches wouldn't spill over into the next scheduled program.

  • Mike M.||

    Lots and lots of fans showed up to the Michigan-Florida game disguised as empty seats. Pretty embarrassing for a big Elite 8 game.

  • Ted S.||

    The Michigan fans are probably drunk from partying the entire night to celebrate the defeat of Ohio State.

  • Mike M.||

    No SEC chump for Florida to beat up on today; they're playing a real team now, and it shows.

  • ||

    NO MY BRACKET! I HAD A CHANCE, I WAS A CONTENDAH!

  • juris imprudent||

    Dude, it's fucking Cowboy Stadium. For basketball. You take those endzone seats you better bring some 10x50 binocs.

  • A Serious Man||

    Given that millions of well- paying jobs in the manufacturing and construction sectors have been lost during the last 20 years, and that this loss has its greatest impact on the prospects of young men, these consolations may seem meager. Yet look at how young men are expressing their discontent. Murder rates have dropped. Rape rates have dropped. Property crimes have dropped.

    I'd say it's simply because in the end the country is still far more prosperous than it was 20 or 30 years ago because of technology. It not only creates material wealth, but it simply makes people happier to have an entire world at their fingertips.

    Yeah, politicians like to invoke stories of hopeless people on unemployment but the fact is a lot of them aren't desperate, befuddled maybe, but they can still move back in with mom and dad or get temp work even if its beneath the dignity they earned with their sociology degree.

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    But we manufacture more than ever. And export more than ever.

  • Irish||

    Yeah, it's just that the manufacturing doesn't require workers and is more mechanized. Complaining about this would be like complaining that more efficient barrel making put coopers out of business.

  • Sevo||

    Or looms putting weavers out of...
    Oh, wait!

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    It is a primary reason UE remains high. We just don't need those assembly workers anymore.

    The real growth industries like biotech and semis don't need them either.

  • Xenocles||

    But Obama said we were turning around!

  • Tejicano||

    No! No! He said he would arrange for us to get a reach around. But I'm not holding my breath.

  • Irish||

    That's a blatant lie. Unemployment is high because overregulation isn't allowing new businesses to open up. We had some of the lowest peace time unemployment rates in our history in the '90s and throughout the 2000's, up until the crash. By claiming it's the result of manufacturing not hiring, you get to shift the blame from Obama and Democrat policies that have kept unemployment high (Dodd-Frank, Obamacare, and the hyper-regulation at the state level) and claim that it's a structural issue that has nothing to do with them.

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    Oh, bullshit. We are lightly regulated here in the USA according to Heritage and Bloomberg. No decent company gives a fuck about Obamacare as they already offer HI.

    Dodd-Frank raised capital standards and little else in terms of regulation.

    Quit listening to wingnut radio.

  • Sevo||

    Palin's Buttplug| 3.31.13 @ 3:53PM |#
    "Oh, bullshit. We are lightly regulated here in the USA according to Heritage and Bloomberg"

    Dipshit, what's cherry-picking paying these days?

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    US #4 in regulatory freedom - behind three pint-sized countries.

    http://www.bloomberg.com/news/.....icker.html

  • Sevo||

    Oooh! Loook! Dipshit found a cherry!
    Go fuck your daddy.

  • Irish||

    Question: Are we more or less regulated than we were when our economy was better? Virtually everyone is more regulated now than they were even 20 years ago.

    More importantly, most of the regulations in America DON'T OCCUR AT THE NATIONAL LEVEL. They occur at state level and localities, and what's destroying businesses in many areas of this country, particularly California, New York, Illinois and the cities, are state and local regulations.

    This reminds me of when people claim 'America has low taxes!' and don't take into account sales taxes, gas taxes and income taxes levied by states and localities. You do realize that those things matter, right moron?

  • ||

    Annual federal regulation costs about $1.75T, that's equivalent to 13% of GDP.

    And here is a chart (using White House numbers) showing how much it's increased compared to Clinton and Bush.

  • VG Zaytsev||

    Annual federal regulation costs about $1.75T, that's equivalent to 13% of GDP.

    Even that number is too low.

    The costs of paying for an out of control tort system and avoiding lawsuits is another 10-15% of GDP and then there are is the accounting sector that would be 1/10th of it's current size without ridiculous tax codes.

    All totaled government interventions is sucking up 60-65% of GDP.

  • Scruffy Nerfherder||

    then there are is the accounting sector that would be 1/10th of it's current size without ridiculous tax codes.

    Who wants to bet on whether Ernst and Young are lobbying for VAT in the USA?

  • Heroic Mulatto||

  • Irish||

    The Economist disagrees with Bloomburg and the World Bank.

    You want to just get into a contest to see who can find the most random citations?

  • Rhywun||

    Contrary to what has sometimes been misreported, the use or importation of chewing gum is subject only to fines; it is not and has never been an offence punishable by caning.

    Awesome - I'm booking my tickets now!

  • Irish||

    We're lightly regulated compared to worldwide hyperregulation. Being one of the better houses in inner city Detroit isn't something to be proud of.

    Also of note: Every country ahead of us on the Heritage rankings is doing better than us, most of the countries behind us are far worse. Which tells me that we should be more like the countries ahead of us (the ones with more economic freedom) and less like the ones behind us (those with less.)

    "No decent company gives a fuck about Obamacare as they already offer HI."

    Rich companies might not, but potential small businesses operating on razor thin margins sure as shit do. And guess where most of the job creation occurs? Small businesses! Maybe if you stopped sucking Soros' cock and took a minute to wipe his jism from your lips, you'd realize that very little job creation comes from Google. Most of it comes from some burger joint on the corner that no one has ever heard of, and they are being obliterated by Obamacare.

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    I know I've won when you guys whip the Soros strawman out.

    A burger joint or dry cleaner can hire 49 FTEs before they have to worry about the health of their employees.

  • Irish||

    And the cost of that 50th is MASSIVE. Jesus, Shrike, your entire argument consists of strawmen, waffling, namedropping George Soros and Warren Buffet, and whining when anyone makes fun of God King Obama.

    Your argument about U.S. regulations relative to the rest of the world, at a time when the rest of the world is in a state of low growth rates and economic collapse, basically means that you think we're the prettiest girl in the leper colony.

    And you think you won with that? Sweet Christ, you're delusional.

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    There is no expense in offering your little worker bees a HI program to buy. It is like the guy from Popeye's Chicken said "Fuck it, they won't sign up anyway. Let them pay the penalty/tax".

  • Sevo||

    Palin's Buttplug| 3.31.13 @ 4:33PM |#
    "There is no expense in offering your little worker bees a HI program to buy"

    I didn't edit that at all; dipshit posted exactly that.
    Pathetic.

  • Scruffy Nerfherder||

    There is no expense in offering your little worker bees a HI program to buy.

    Wow....

  • Xenocles||

    That must be why converting workers to part time is all the rage these days - because there's no added expense in offering health insurance.

  • Sevo||

    "because there's no added expense in offering health insurance."
    Absolutely none! Why, toss some pixie dust in the air, and presto!

  • Sevo||

    Those cherries don't have to pick themselves when dipshit's around!

  • ||

    I think he's picking dingleberries if anything.

  • juris imprudent||

    To shrike a dingleberry is pretty cherry.

  • JWatts||

    Regulatory Freedom in the 50 states:

    http://freedominthe50states.org/

  • Contrarian P||

    I doubt any research has been done, but historically the group likely to commit crimes, particularly the ones we're interested in that involve damage to the life/health or property of another, are young males. Young males are also the biggest players of video games. The rise of video games as an entertainment medium would seem to correlate well with the drop in crime rates. Perhaps those evil violent video games are actually saving us from crime?

  • Archduke Pantsfan||

  • ||

    "Patrick? *slurpslurpslurpslurp*"

  • ||

    That was really rad.

    It's no wonder Epi has such a man boy crush on Wesley.

  • juris imprudent||

    No response from Epi - has anybody checked Warty's basement?

  • General Butt Naked||

    He's probably been fappin' to that video all day.

    That'd be my guess.

  • VG Zaytsev||

    Given that millions of well- paying jobs in the manufacturing and construction sectors have been lost during the last 20 years, and that this loss has its greatest impact on the prospects of young men,...

    Most manufacturing jobs were not well paying and many of them were dirty, dangerous and mind numbingly boring. There is absolutely no reason to believe that those jobs are inherently better than the ones that replaced them. In fact, logically those jobs were worse.

    And do you have any citation that the number of construction jobs today is lower than it was in 1992? It's declined in the last 6 years or so but that was from an unsustainable housing bubble level.

  • General Butt Naked||

    I'd be interested in those numbers too.

    It seems a given that there was once a high paying manufacturing job available every American; no one is challenging that.

    I find it hard to believe that there were once enough "stand there and do one thing all day" jobs to allow every American to buy a house, 2 cars, health insurance, retirement and send their 2.3 kids to college

  • Sevo||

    "I find it hard to believe that there were once enough "stand there and do one thing all day" jobs to allow every American to buy a house, 2 cars, health insurance, retirement and send their 2.3 kids to college"

    The twenty-year span after WWII was pretty generous for semi-skilled industrial workers. There was near zero competition for American manufactures and the prices and wages reflected that.
    "Imported" cars were limited to sports cars, American steel and the US machine tool industry pretty much dominated those world markets, etc.
    So if it didn't do all of what you ask, it got close.

  • VG Zaytsev||

    Standard of living have improved immensely in the 65 years since WWII ended.

    The crappy houses that auto workers in the 50s could afford wouldn't be fit to house pets today. And auto workers were the royalty of factory workers. Most of them had crappy jobs that they hated and barely scraped by.

    The idea that life was so much easier then is a laughable myth. That the myth is promulgated by the socialist left today is incredibly ironic since their big pushes in 60s and 70s were all a reaction to the corporatist policies, inequality and conformism of the early post war decades.

  • General Butt Naked||

    I'm just wondering if the supposedly high wages are a myth in themselves.

    Imagine not having cable, internet, cel phone to pay for. And most kids weren't expecting to go to college so there's another cost gone.

    And how much of a percentage of the population then, if you adjusted for inflation, would be able to have the amount of purchasing power of one of today's average workers?

    The numbers for this stuff may not even be out there, but they should be as so much of our politics is devoted to returning to some golden age that may have never existed.

    Also, what you say must be taken into account as well. We weren't manufacturing giants because of some mythical work ethic, or high level of skill. We had virtually no competition for la couple of decades.

  • Guy Laguy||

  • General Butt Naked||

    Twenty five cent gas is great, unless you make a buck an hour. To compare we'd have to know how long it would take a worker to earn enough to buy a gallon.

    And if you, on average, spend 20% more on your house now, but get 50% more of a better home then you've come out ahead.

    The numbers out of context seem great, but more info is needed to decide which is better.

  • Sevo||

    I'm not arguing that the standard of living was better at the time, just pointing out that the lack of competition allowed a *lot* of semi-skilled to make 'way more than they can now.
    The costs of that labor has been competed downward by trade, cheap shipping and automation.

  • Rhywun||

    For me, it's largely pre- vs post-Internet. My life circa 1990 was little different from 1970 - a few more cable channels, that's about it. Of course I wasn't on my own until 1990 so I can't really make too much out of that theory.

  • VG Zaytsev||

    Houses and apartments were larger in 1990 than they were in 1970. Automobiles were better in every way, safer, more comfortable, longer lasting; a car in 1970s likely had a crappy radio and 8-track as standard issue. In 1990 it had a CD player and 'surround sound' speakers.

    Food was better in 1990, for most people, than it was in 1970. The variety carried by grocery stores was larger, fresher and cheaper. The same was true of prepared food with the number, quality and variety of restaurants increasing dramatically in those 20 years.

    The sectors of the economy that have not seen dramatically increased quality and lower prices since 1970s are education, healthcare and the legal system. -- All dominate by government.

  • Archduke Pantsfan||

    Happy Birthday Christopher Walken

  • General Butt Naked||

    That was awesome.

    When real aloud, the lyrics to pop music are really bad. It's hard to believe that someone at one point wrote that crap down on paper and thought it was good.

  • A Serious Man||

  • Archduke Pantsfan||

    Sidney Crosby out with a broken jaw, doctors say it could be weeks before he's able to complain again.

  • General Butt Naked||

    Goddammit.

    He's the leagues leading crier and we can't whine without him.

  • juris imprudent||

    The only time I was ever really tempted to hit a woman was when my ex-wife once compared me to Danny Ainge.

    It was a long silence.

  • Archduke Pantsfan||

  • Ted S.||

    For fucks sake would people design their websites so that you can read the text even if you don't have images loaded.

  • Archduke Pantsfan||

    BERLIN – An entire troupe of performing fleas has fallen victim to the freezing temperatures currently gripping Germany.

  • Sevo||

    Pretty sure the commenter's figured it out:
    "A day early, folks"

  • Ted S.||

    The commenter's what figured it out?

  • Sevo||

    OK, Ted:
    "Pretty sure the commenter has figured it out"
    Better now? Sheesh....

  • Archduke Pantsfan||

    Sugar leads to obesity, or does it?

  • A Serious Man||

    That link doesn't work, but my God, I could read the headline.

  • Irish||

    http://news.ninemsn.com.au/wor.....r-mum-died

    "Police initially estimated she had been dead for five days before the discovery, but Zieser said on Wednesday it may have been two to three."

    It sounds like the boy was not being fed properly before she died. How could he have not eaten for 2-5 days and been this malnourished? Obviously I wouldn't want to go a few days without food, and it would sure as hell be bad for you, but it shouldn't have resulted in him being that under weight.

  • Archduke Pantsfan||

    it worked on preview

  • AlmightyJB||

    3 strikes

  • Archduke Pantsfan||

    What's more annoying, being out of Easter Eggs or Jacques Villeneuve?

  • The Late P Brooks||

    Mark has nothing.

    Nothing, except, oh yeah, the points for second place.

    Weber has had plenty of time to establish himself as the Number One on that team, and HE COULDN'T. Too bad. I'm pretty sure he has had opportunities to do a Hamilton and move to another team, but he stays right where he is. Funny.

    If Vettel had crashed himself or both of them out of the race, that would be a different story.

  • ||

    Hey everybody. I havent been able to post in a while. i am still alive and would like to send a hearty fuck you to every one... even fatty loving john.

  • Jordan||

    Welcome back, broseph.

  • Ted S.||

    I didn't notice you were absent.

  • ||

    Who are you again?

  • Archduke Pantsfan||

    Bernie Ecclestone may be talking about his successor.

  • Enjoy Every Sandwich||

    The cause is obvious: the city's Apple control laws are being undercut by lax laws in other states. Those darn Apple nuts!

  • Sevo||

    "Those darn Apple nuts!"
    New Starbucks flavor?

  • mariyana||

    my classmate's mother-in-law makes $85 an hour on the internet. She has been without work for 5 months but last month her pay check was $18468 just working on the internet for a few hours. Read more on this web site and go to home tab for more detail--- http://goo.gl/XjdQI

  • wakeup||

    They are just waiting for the right event to trigger a “national security emergency” so they can declare martial law

  • General Butt Naked||

  • Killazontherun||

    Eat two Italian subs and a hard boiled egg before going on set and let the gassy digestive track express itself without any inhibitions?

  • A Serious Man||

    Wow, I really hope that Louisville player is okay. Scariest basketball injury I've ever seen.

  • ||

    Got it here, in the background: http://www.sportsgrid.com/ncaa.....re-injury/

  • juris imprudent||

    Well thanks, we haven't had Easter dinner yet and I've lost the better part of my appetite.

  • Ted S.||

    I haven't watched it. Is it worse than Joe Theeeeeseman's injury?

  • ||

    Ah, you can barely see it. His tibia split up and one of them is trying to hit the road.

  • The Late P Brooks||

    Bernie Ecclestone may be talking about his successor.

    At least it's not his daughter.

  • Nathaniel Taggart||

  • The Late P Brooks||

    Speaking of sports impacts, I was watching the Colgate vs Army lacrosse game earlier. Colgate guy gets a long cross field pass. He catches the ball, takes one step up field and gets LEVELED by an Army defenseman. Face mask to face mask contact. It was awesome.

    Of course, nowadays, the NCAA doesn't approve of such he-manly play, so the defenseman gets a nonreleasable two minute penalty. I'd probably get kicked out of every game, if I was playing now.

  • obd2works||

    wtf As a Newbie, I am always searching online for articles that can aid me. Thank It's truly a great and useful piece of information. I'm happy that you shared this helpful information with us. Please stay us up to date like this. Thank you for sharing.

  • LEONA||

    All she did was get fortunate and put to use the guide made clear on this web page and go to home tab for more detail--- http://www.JUMP30.COM

  • Alton543||

    as Curtis explained I'm surprised that you able to earn $8939 in a few weeks on the internet. did you look at this webpage http://www.wow92.com

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