Author Archive: Paul Epps

Kobe Bryant is My Basketball Teacher

 

View this post on Instagram A post shared by My Basketball Teacher (@mybasketballteacher) Read more →

EppsNet at the Movies: Emily the Criminal

 

This movie probably doesn’t deserve the whole five stars but I have a real affinity for characters like Emily (played by Aubrey Plaza), who, like the Mark Baum and Vinny characters in The Big Short, are people with a code of honor, a sense of awareness, not looking for trouble, but not willing to put up with insolence or nonsense. To give you a sense of what I mean — and this may need a very minor spoiler alert — a group of criminals has stolen a significant amount from Emily’s boyfriend (also a criminal but less physical than the other criminals) and she’s making a case that they should go and get it back because, among other reasons, the boyfriend owes her a cut of what was stolen. The boyfriend is against the idea. “These are very serious people,” he says. Emily replies, “No, no, we’re serious people. Ok?… Read more →

It All Depends on Who’s Slinging the Hash

 

‘This Is Shocking’: Some Democrats Demand CNN Apologize, Denounce Alleged ‘Islamaphobia’ Made Against Ilhan Omar https://t.co/PkDdBuwt6f via @dailycaller — Paul Epps (@paulepps) March 16, 2024 It is shocking! I haven’t been as shocked since Claude Rains discovered gambling at Rick’s Cafe. I think Democrats really do believe that the role of corporate media in general and CNN in particular is to serve as a public relations arm of the Democratic party. A journalist taking an adversarial position vis-a-vis a Democratic representative should not be allowed to have a job. What CNN commentator Scott Jennings said is that Ilhan Omar is a “public relations agent for Hamas living in the United States Congress.” To me, that’s a pretty good one-liner, no better or worse than political barbs I read every day. All the people that I see complaining about the remark are people who’ve called Donald Trump Hitler, Satan, a fascist,… Read more →

EppsNet at the Movies: The Big Short

 

My connection with the events depicted in The Big Short is that I worked in the information technology department of a mortgage bank in the run-up to the 2007 implosion of the subprime mortgage market. Many of the big players in that market, like New Century and Countrywide, were based here in my backyard — in Orange County and Pasadena. Given that it was fairly evident at the time that complicated financial instruments were being dreamed up for the sole purpose of lending money to people who could never repay it, it’s remarkable that very few people foresaw the catastrophe and that even fewer actually had the nerve to bet on it to happen. Long story short, the major rating agencies — Standard and Poor’s and Moody’s — were incompetent in their rating of subprime mortgage bonds, giving investment-grade and, in some cases, triple-A ratings to high-risk instruments. A lot… Read more →

International Women’s Day 2024

 

Happy International Women’s Day 2024! (Belated — I meant to post this yesterday.) So many girls and women who’ve been a joy to work with as students, colleagues, teachers, mentors. I wish I could relive every moment with you. If you think you may be in that group, you probably are. If you’re not sure, message me and I’ll tell you. 🙂 I think I remember women better because there haven’t been as many of them. I work in software engineering. Women are underrepresented in software engineering. You may have heard. Women and men are different so it doesn’t seem surprising that they choose to do different things with their lives. Software engineering has been a good career for me because I like solving problems and building things, so I’ve been able to make a living doing, for the most part, things that I like and things that (I think)… Read more →

New Digital SAT Seems Pretty Easy

 

https://t.co/HSdNfODnIP — Paul Epps (@paulepps) March 10, 2024 I took a digital SAT recently. I’ve got a BA in Journalism and an MS in Computer Science, so I’m very well-rounded, like a sphere. I eat standardized tests for breakfast. The English portion, or Reading or whatever they call it now, seems much easier to me. I got 800 (out of 800) on that. There’s no more “read a column and a half of text, then answer 10 questions about it.” You read a paragraph, answer one question and move on. There are no more analogies. There are no obscure vocabulary words. Math is still math, although as noted in the story, if you’re getting a lot of answers right, then they start serving you harder questions. I got 780 on the Math portion. TL;DR: It’s an easy test. I got an almost perfect score and believe me, kids, I’ve been… Read more →

EppsNet at the Movies: Man From Reno

 

You probably haven’t seen this. Or heard of it. It was funded by a Kickstarter campaign, released on iTunes, then later on Netflix. The synopsis should note that it’s a neo-noir. Some of the marketing materials make it look like a Murder, She Wrote crime caper. It isn’t. It’s dark. I just sat staring at the screen for several minutes after it ended. Rating: Director: Cast: IMDb rating: ( votes) Read more →

When I Grow Up, I Want to Work for a Woke Company

 

View this post on Instagram A post shared by Empire Growth (@empire_growth) Read more →

Has Crime Gone Up or Down? Yes

 

I can’t believe I’ve lived as long as I have without knowing this, but the United States has two primary ways of measuring the nation’s crime rate: the FBI’s Uniform Crime Reports (UCR) and the Bureau of Justice Statistics’ National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS). I’ve always thought that the FBI UCR was the definitive word on crime stats. If you’ve got the UCR data, that’s it. Game over. Not true! The data above are a year old, but you can see that 2022 UCR data shows a drop in the violent crime rate, while NCVS data shows that total violent crime rose in 2022. UCR Data vs. NCVS data The FBI’s UCR statistics reflect crimes reported by the public to police. But most crimes are not reported to the police. To help account for the omissions, the NCVS measures crime in a nationwide household survey of respondents ages 12 and… Read more →

EppsNet at the Movies: Dumb Money

 

I laughed non-stop through Dumb Money, except during the parts that weren’t intended to be funny. I had to take off a star because (minor spoiler alert, since the movie’s based on a true story that everyone knows) it’s a David vs. Goliath movie, and the Goliaths get their comeuppance, but that’s conveyed principally through explanatory text on the screen after the movie is essentially over. The comeuppance should be on-screen! Show, don’t tell! Rating: Director: Cast: IMDb rating: ( votes) Read more →

Men’s and Women’s Brains Work Differently

 

Men and women's brains do work differently, scientists discover for first time https://t.co/UBU6miq2R2 — Paul Epps (@paulepps) March 7, 2024 In a breakthrough study from Stanford University, scientists have discovered — FOR THE FIRST TIME — that men’s and women’s brains work differently! I know what you’re thinking: What year am I in? Men’s and women’s brains work differently?! I feel like any adult who’s ever been in a straight relationship could write a Ph.D. thesis on this topic. I was explaining to a woman today that I lost a fairly small object that I’m sure I had in my car, but after searching the car top to bottom multiple times, I couldn’t find it. And she said: “Did you look under the seat?” I was gobsmacked. “No,” I said. “Why didn’t I think of that? That’s probably where it is.” Another woman nearby, who’d overheard the part about scouring… Read more →

Happiness is in Short Supply

 

Research by the Institute for Family Studies shows 35% of married dads report being “very happy,” while only 14% of unmarried and childless men can say the same. “The data tells us that no group of men are happier than married fathers.” Actually, it looks like the data are telling us that no men are happy, but married fathers are slightly less miserable than the norm. Read more →

White Rural Rage?

 

There’s a new book out called White Rural Rage: The Threat to American Democracy. I haven’t read it but it did give me an idea for a fun drinking game. Every time you hear the phrase “threat to democracy” or a variant thereof between now and the presidential election, you take a drink. The downside is you’ll be dead long before November and you’ll never find out who gets elected. The authors of the book were interviewed on MSNBC this past week. One of the authors, Tom Schaller, said this: “First of all, [white rural voters] are the most racist, xenophobic, anti-immigrant, anti-gay demographic in the country. Second, they’re the most conspiracist group: QAnon support and subscribers, election denialism, Covid denialism and scientific skepticism, Obama birtherism. Third: anti-democratic sentiments. They don’t believe in an independent press, free speech, they’re most likely to say the president should be able to act… Read more →

Robert Reich, Regurgitator

 

Thanks to loopholes in the Trump tax cuts, the biggest companies in the country have been able to avoid more than $276 billion in federal taxes. This is what I mean when I say the system is rigged. — Robert Reich (@RBReich) March 2, 2024 A lot of professors use the X platform to thoughtfully engage with the issues of the day. This guy uses it to regurgitate DNC talking points in ways that don’t even make sense. And yet I actually feel embarrassed for him. Read more →

2024 Index of Economic Freedom

 

The recently released 2024 Index of Economic Freedom, published by the Heritage Foundation, reveals that, regrettably, the global average score for economic freedom has fallen from the previous year’s 59.3 and is now the lowest it has been since 2001, at only 58.6. Singapore maintained its status as the world’s freest economy, followed by Switzerland, Ireland and Taiwan. To our credit, the United States has an above-average score of 70.1. The bad news is that’s the lowest score ever for the U.S. in the 30-year history of the index. The U.S. is now the world’s 25th-freest economy. Apparently the Biden administration’s lack of commitment to the rule of law, limited government, regulatory efficiency and market openness is corroding our economic freedom. North Korea has a commanding grip on last place in the index, with a score of 2.9. No other country is even close. Cuba posted the second worst score… Read more →

Joy Reid

 

‘A Little Creepy’: Joy Reid Links Desire To Have Kids To ‘Slavery’, White Supremacist Conspiracy https://t.co/hLy6mTILXA via @dailycaller — Paul Epps (@paulepps) February 27, 2024 This may have lost something in the headline. I think she was trying to make a point about IVF in Alabama. It probably doesn’t matter because you can pick anything Joy Reid says and rely on it being hateful and stupid. Her brain just cannot get past the most primitive explanation for any event, which is that everybody is a racist. If it weren’t for the existence of Rachel Maddow, I’d say that Joy Reid is the most pathetic person in broadcast media, but as it stands, she’s no worse than a close second. Read more →

Morality of Student Loan Debt

 

I saw a post on LinkedIn in which the poster shared that his son got a college acceptance letter, but the son felt guilty about how it might affect the family finances. The poster shared the following question: Parents and Students – how have you managed this experience, dealt with any guilt, and yet maintained your excitement for the incredible experience ahead of you? My answer: How did we manage the experience? We always emphasized education in the Epps household. My son worked very hard in high school, got admitted to his dream college. What would we say at that point? “Congratulations, son! As a reward for your efforts, we’re going to allow you to take on student loan debt that will haunt you for the rest of your life”? Maybe “immoral” is too strong a word for that but I have a deep negative feeling about parents letting kids… Read more →

Do You Believe in Karma?

 

From an interview of Harvard economist Roland Fryer by the journalist Bari Weiss: BW: You were suspended [from Harvard for two years in 2019] by a woman who I had never heard of until recently. Her name is Claudine Gay. And she said this in a letter to the economics department at the time: “Professor Fryer exhibited a pattern of behavior that failed to meet the expectations of conduct within our community and was harmful to the well-being of its members. The totality of these behaviors is a clear violation of institutional norms and a betrayal of trust of the Harvard community.” So I guess I want to ask, do you believe in karma? RF: I hear it’s a motherfucker. Read more →

« Previous PageNext Page »