April 21, 2014

Congratulations, We Are Healthier Than Ever!

I live in Amsterdam. For the geographically challenged -- or for those who have spent too much time in an American high school -- Amsterdam is in Holland. Holland is also called The Netherlands. This literally means "Low Lands", which is why in French it is called the Pays Bays. Low is the word to keep in mind when thinking of this land. There is a free market on sex. Drugs, some soft, and some bordering on hard (i.e., certain mushrooms) are tolerated, de facto legal really. Salaries are stifled (i.e., kept low) by an paternalistic tax regime. And the general culture here is currently competing with American popular culture to see which can slouch further and faster towards Gomorrah (in Robert Bork's coinage). Morality may be a least common denominator approach, live and let die may be the M.O. in all but aid for Africa, and the streets may look like a cross between Istanbul and Bunyan's 'Vanity Fair.' But one thing is for certain, we are sure that we are healthier than … [Read more...]