WHAT PRICE BEAUTY? Women Sever Toes to Fit High Heels

China - foot binding

1640 A.D.:  Virtually all women in China bind their feet to attract a suitor. The painful practice was outlawed by the Qing Dynasty in 1902, but remained common until 1949, when the Communists assumed power and foot binding was finally ended.  The practice has been decried by modern-day feminists as a classic example of societal oppression of women. THIS IS BAD:  2012 A.D.: Women in U.S. have toes amputated to fit into excruciating high heeled shoes. THIS IS ALSO … [Read more...]

THE OLD LADY WHO SWALLOWED A FLY: Unintended Consequences – Kudzu, Digital Billboards, and the Birth Control Pill

Billboards-Times-Squaer-300x201

Do you remember the silly children’s song about the old lady who swallowed the fly?  The poor, misguided woman tried again and again to rid herself of her problem, by swallowing bigger and bigger things—a spider, a bird, a cat, a dog, a goat, a cow, and finally a horse—and she’s dead, of course! The law of unintended consequences, popularized in the 20th century by American sociologist Robert Merton, is like that.  Someone does something, no doubt with the best of intentions, but … [Read more...]


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