ABSOLUTION FROM SOCIAL SECURITY TAX
Ben Tobias-no-relation writes: “In your short list of people who can escape the Social Security system, you left one out: Ordained Ministers (priests, rabbis, etc). With a claim of poverty, they can opt out of Social Security. That along with their parsonage allowance makes being a minister a taxless profession.” Ah, but not a thankless one.
SORRY, DR. SHECKLEY!
University of Illinois chemistry professor Dana Dlott writes: “Your ‘joke’ about the computers was actually a paraphrase of a very short story written by Robert Sheckley. (With all due respect, his was better than yours.) He was the master of the ultra-short story genre, and the story was maybe two pages long. In the story, the head scientist throws a great big switch to turn on the linked computers. When he asks “Is there a God,” the computer says, “there is one now.” The head scientist gets upset and tries to turn the switch off, but then a big lightning bolt comes out of the heavens and fuses the switch together. This story was written I believe in the late Fifties or early Sixties when the big computers were actually big because they were full of tubes.”
“Forget paper towels,” writes Rob Myhre, one of the many of you who seem to have found that comment particularly absorbing. “What about newspapers, magazines, and catalogs? Those things must be destroying thousands of times more trees. I’m hoping the Internet will do away with some of this waste. I get the Washington Post, WSJ, and some mags via the Internet now. I’ve reduced the amount of paper I consume very substantially. In some ways, it’s not as convenient, but I can’t stand buying five pounds of paper (the Sunday Post), when I read only a few pages of it.”
Monday: More Phone Savings