Anything worth talking about, is worth blogging about

Yesterday, as everyone knows by now, marriage equality is now the law of the land everywhere in the United States. The final decision was a 5–4 ruling.

Hooray for the future and equal rights!

The short answer is “too big”.

I found this report (via Political Irony), from, of all places, the International Monetary Fund, discussing the size of the gravy train subsidies given to fossil fuel industries. Among its findings:

  • Almost $5 trillion is spent in such subsidies. This is about 6.5% of global gross domestic product.
  • Coal gets the most subsidies. This finding is new to me. It is also the most disturbing, as coal is one of the worst fossil fuels in terms of pollution and global warming.
  • A substantial part of these subsidies are indirect, as in not properly charging for externalities.
  • Eliminating these subsidies would have enormous benefits, including increased government revenue, less pollution, and millions of fewer deaths
  • Global coordination is not necessary, as a country “going it alone” by eliminating subsidies will still reap benefits.

With the above benefits, it is obviously a great idea to end these subsidies now. Energy companies do not need these subsidies. Indeed, the same way those who are doing just fine don’t need an unpaid cheer squad, those who are doing just fine don’t need coddling from the government either.

USA wins it

The United States has won the Ice Hockey Women’s World Championship. They beat Canada 7–5 in the gold medal game. Finland won bronze, and Germany finished in eighth place and was relegated.

The final rankings are:

  1. United States
  2. Canada
  3. Finland
  4. Russia
  5. Sweden
  6. Switzerland
  7. Japan
  8. Germany – relegated to Division I A

Barring a change in format, these will be the pools for the 2016 tournament in Kamloops BC:

Pool A Pool B
Canada Japan
Finland Sweden
Russia Switzerland
United States Winner of Division I A

Tomorrow, the 2015 Ice Hockey Women’s World Championship starts in Sweden. It will be the 25th anniversary of the tournament.

I think that the most likely result will be a similar one to the previous tournament. The top two will be the usual suspects. Finland will probably be third. I am losing confidence in my predictions that Sweden will return to the top four. Japan will likely be relegated.

Random music

The original version of this song is one of my niece’s favourites.

Also, the pianist is Canadian and plays her music by ear.

Team USA has won the 2015 IIHF U18 Women’s World Championship. They won it 3–2 in overtime. The final rankings are:

  1. United States – Gold Medal
  2. Canada – Silver Medal
  3. Russia – Bronze Medal
  4. Czech Republic
  5. Finland
  6. Sweden
  7. Switzerland
  8. Japan – Relegated to Division I
Pool A Pool B
United States Finland
Canada Sweden
Russia Switzerland
Czech Republic France

The next tournament will be in St. Catherine’s, Ontario.

Word of the year 2014

The American Dialect Society has chosen its Words of the Year 2014:

  • Most Useful was “even” in the sense of handling a tough situation.
  • Most Creative was “columbusing” a kind of cultural appropriation, especially when a majority group “discovers” something already known by a minority.
  • Most Unnecessary was “baeless” meaning without a romantic partner.
  • Most Outrageous was “second-amendment” meaning to kill someone.
  • Most Euphemistic was “EIT”,  for enhanced interrogation techniques.
  • Most Likely to Succeed was “salty” meaning exceptionally upset.
  • Least Likely to Succeed was “platisher” meaning a webmedia that is an output for creative works.
  • Most Notable Hashtag was “#blacklivesmatter” protests over Black people killed by police.

“#blacklivesmatter” was also Word of the Year.

The ADS’s sibling organization, the American Name Society, chose “Ferguson” as its name of the year.

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