Carpe Diem

Saturday morning links

1. Business Insider reports that: “According to the Energy Information Administration, the Monterrey Formation, which covers an enormous chunk of Southern California and terminates near Santa Barbara, has 15.4 billion barrels of recoverable crude — four times as much as the Bakken formation in North Dakota.”

2. Saudi America: U.S. oil production averaged 6.709 million barrels per day for the week ending November 9, which was the highest domestic output of crude oil since May 1994, more than 18 years ago.

3. Time’s 12 best inventions of 2012.

4. NBA “ticket dumping”: Some pro basketball tickets are selling for as low as $0.10 per seat this year, yes that’s right, 10 cents, according to this Yahoo! Sports article.  Also, see current StubHub listings for many NBA tickets priced below $2. Economic lesson: The face value on a ticket is frequently arbitrary and often has no relationship to the true, market value of the ticket.  Compared to its face value, the market value of a ticket might be 10 times greater or 10 ten times less.

5. On the other hand, there’s now rampant “Twinkies scalping” and” price gouging” on eBay for Hostess Twinkies. Here’s one auction where the price is currently $89 for five boxes of ten Twinkies, which normally retail for $4.29 per box. That’s more than four times the retail price. Don’t tell Governor Christie, he might start prosecuting. Or buying himself?

6. Via Freakonomics: After affirmative action ended in CA, the minority graduation rate increased 4.4%, partly due to less academic mismatch.

7. Markets in everything:  Need 3 college credits really fast? You can complete a 10-day college class for less than $400 at Western Oklahoma State College. Target customer? College athletes.

8. Global warming stopped 16 years ago, reveals a report from UK’s Met Office, which was recently quietly released.

Special bonus photo:   

34 thoughts on “Saturday morning links

    • Actually other than the name what is unique about a twinkie? Its just a cake donut filled with vanilla cream. Yes the shape is a bit different than the round donut, and its a sponge cake rather than donut batter, but I would expect competitors to emerge soon.
      For something that has such a short shelf life it seems that fools are easy to separate from their money. (Although I will admit to buying some old coke just before the new coke came out, but I never drank it and it eventually got thrown away 10 years later)

      • Short shelf life? What do you mean? Twinkies are one of the most durable foods in the universe. As you may recall from that important documentary Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengence, the character Ray Carrigan was unable to eat a sandwich or an apple as everything he touched rotted immediately, but, a Twinkie was unaffected by his touch.

        And, in the 2008 film WALL-E, a Twinkie is sighted completely undecayed in its wrapper on WALL-E’s truck 700 years after the Earth was rendered largely uninhabitable for organic life forms. :)

  1. Also on the topic of AGW, the latest scandal is the gate-keeping by the BBC. James Delingpole does a good job explaining “28gate”:

    http://www.spectator.co.uk/columnists/james-delingpole/8758121/heres-a-bbc-scandal-that-should-really-make-you-disgusted/

    “It [the BBC] may have affected you [writing to British viewers], for example, if: you’ve had your view ruined and your property value trashed by a wind farm; you’re one of the 2,700 people killed in Britain last year by fuel poverty; you can’t get a job; you’ve lost your job; you’re skint; your kids can’t sleep because they’re so worried about the pets that are going to be drowned by the carbon monster; you’ve ever wondered why occasionally — even once would be nice — the BBC doesn’t make a programme about ‘climate change’ which isn’t relentlessly alarmist.”

    Read on to find out the story of uncovering the identity of the 28 ‘best scientific experts’ on climate change.

  2. The speculators may drive up the price of one package of Twinkies higher than a barrel of oil. There is makeshift relief for Twinkie guilty pleasure with a twinkie home-brew recipe.

    I would expect Warren Buffett to take out the speculators with a purchase of Hostess based on the intristic value of Twinkies brand alone.

  3. Maybe twinkies are like soda – a taste you have to develop in childhood. I find both disgusting. Not as disgusting as unions killing twinkies for those who love them, but pretty gross.

    If they’re that popular on ebay, I wonder if another company will buy the formula and sell it.

    • Hmm. A Twinkie factory in St. Kitts. Can I work for you? I think I can learn to make them using this instructional video.

      Actually the formula may not be nearly as important as the brand name. It should be easy to duplicate the taste, but that wrapper – gotta be right.

      Based on your comment, I’ll bet you don’t even like hostess cream filled chocolate cupcakes, either. A staple of every US school child who grew up in the ’50s.

      I remember when I was in 6th grade I started getting the whole package with 2 cupcakes, instead of just one. I knew then I was almost an adult. :)

      An important part of US history you may be unaware of, and which like so much else of importance is missing from the history books, is that Twinkies originally contained a banana cream filling, which was replaced with vanilla cream during WW2 due to the scarcity of bananas.

      • Actually the formula may not be nearly as important as the brand name. It should be easy to duplicate the taste, but that wrapper – gotta be right“…

        Well ron h I’m thinking you do need the Doodyville Real Deal to make it fly…

        • juandos

          Oh wow! You must think you’re talking to someone who can cook. That’s way too complicated for me. I was having trouble keeping up with Buffalo Bob.

          However, just in case I DO get up enough courage or drunk enough to try it, I have some questions about Todd Wilbur’s method:

          1. Why does Todd bake them in the oven for 30 min. @ 325 instead if just saying alakazam-presto like Buffalo Bob does? It’s much faster.

          2. I don’t see anything about it in Todd’s article, so I assume the Twinkies come out of the oven already in the package like the ones in Doodyville do. Is that correct, or is there more to it?

          3. Todd’s recipe calls for shortening. I assume that means lard, right?

          • ron h says: “1. Why does Todd bake them in the oven for 30 min. @ 325 instead if just saying alakazam-presto like Buffalo Bob does? It’s much faster“…

            Todd doesn’t have B-Bob’s magic microwave oven…

            2. I don’t see anything about it in Todd’s article, so I assume the Twinkies come out of the oven already in the package like the ones in Doodyville do. Is that correct, or is there more to it?“…

            Why yes indeed, that some of the sugar oozing out in the baking process to form a clear, protective glazing over the twinkie…

            3. Todd’s recipe calls for shortening. I assume that means lard, right?“…

            Yes, you do want the creamy white center, right?

            Lard can be obtained at any halal certified grocer in your neighborhood…

          • juandos

            Yes, you do want the creamy white center, right?

            Oh, of course! that’s the best part.

            Lard can be obtained at any halal certified grocer in your neighborhood…

            Gee, who would have thought? OK, there are several in my neighborhood. I’ll go askm about it tomorrow morning.

            I suppose if I warm the lard a little bit I can inject it into the cakes with a cake decorating tool.

            I feel pretty confident now. Thanks for your help. I’m going to give this a try tomorrow morning. I’ll let you know how they turn out.

            :)

  4. “California…has 15.4 billion barrels of recoverable crude — four times as much as the Bakken formation in North Dakota.”

    Also, California has a supermajority, making Republicans irrelevant, has the highest poverty rate in the nation at 23.5%, much higher than the second most poverty stricken state, enacted cap and trade last week for carbon emissions, to fight global warming, has an unemployment rate above 10%, and Californians voted to pay higher taxes, although taxes, along with regulations, are already high.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>