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Crawdaddy

As a teenager, I always rooted for Indiana. I was amazed that anyone good enough to play for Indiana would be courageous enough to endure Bob Knight as a coach. I rooted for Indiana because I wanted Knight's players to get some glory for all the crap they endured.

Wally Bock

Beane was and is the General Manager of the Athletics. My take on what he accomplished was to use public source material (statistics about players) to determine a) which players would fit together to make a winning team and b) which of those players were undervalued. That's a significant thing, but I don't see it as evidence-based management. Other GMs looked at the same evidence. Beane's insight was to concentrate on the statistics that made the most difference when putting together a team.

Knud Sinding

On the notion of both assholes and evidence-based management, the Michael Lewis' "Moneyball". It is about the former (?)Oakland manager Billy Beane, who seems to be about a completely different type of sports manager, one who works very carefully with the evidence about players. I have yet to read the book but Cass Sunstein has a fine review http://www.tnr.com/doc.mhtml?i=20030901&s=thalersunstein090103.

Robert Hruzek

There was a story from Reuters the other day about how Parisians are well known for their rude (shall we go ahead and call it what it is: "asshole"?) behavior. It seems even the French Tourism officials are embarrassed by it. But their solution? Turn tourists into assholes, too! They recently issued a guide for tourists to teach them how to rudely gesture the way the French do.

"Blend in by using them the next time you're in Paris. People will start mistaking you for a tourist in no time."

Strange that an entire large group of people are perfectly OK with having everyone think badly of them!

Oddly enough, I found a better solution when my wife and I visited there in 2000. We learned just enough French to get by (simple stuff like hello, how are you, etc.), and when we used it, we found people responded generally surprisingly well.

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