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Asia just got hit by a super typhoon (yes, that’s the technical term) 

With 125mph winds and 12ft waves, Super Typhoon Mangkhut may be the most powerful storm of 2018.

With 125mph winds and 12ft waves, Super Typhoon Mangkhut may be the most powerful storm of 2018.

What it means: Typhoons are pretty bad. But super typhoons are, well, super-bad. If you’re on the skinny side, a 45 mph wind could blow you off your feet. At its worst, Super Typhoon Mangkhut was almost three times as strong, which means it was powerful enough to blow away all of us, our cars, and pretty much anything else standing in its way. Yikes.

Being hit by a storm like Mangkhut is not good for people (over 200 were killed or injured) or the economy.  But calculating the economic cost of Mangkhut is hard, because it depends on what you count as damage and how much you value those damaged things.

So while it's easy enough to add up all the money spent on rebuilding destroyed roads and buildings, it can be tricky to figure out how much countries lose from things like would-be tourists deciding not to visit the Philippines, or employees in Hong Kong missing work because of storm-related injuries or train cancellations.

(Btw, if you’re wondering what makes a typhoon different from a cyclone or hurricane, the answer is nothing. They’re all big-ass storms, but for some reason scientists call them by different names depending on where in the world they happen. Mangkhut hit the Southwest Pacific, so it’s a typhoon).

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Reader Comments

  • RW

    Your right to a degree. You mentioned “the wandering Jew”.

    I elaborate that the Jewish people, historically have tended to migrate almost exclusively to locations that are economically and culturally vibrant already. I would speculate that Jews have thrived in these places and have often improved the bounds of their economies and knowledge base.

    You can also ask; how many massive entertainment conglomerates, Nobel winners or billionaires has Isreal developed? If Jews are so capable, why isn’t Tel Aviv the Rome of our time?

    Jews are successful because they value education, maintain a strong social cohesive, they actively monitor and have a good sense for Zeitgeist wherever they are and they carefully choose the places they settle and congregate themselves heavily in these choice locations.

    But most importantly (haulocaust increased the importance of this aspect), they actually designed their culture for success. They not only attend Harvard, they use what they learned to better the group as a whole. With as much, they studied intricate networking systems, adapted to it and in many cases improved upon them. (See how Japan acquired Aegis warships and made them better).

    Of course there is nothing wrong with any of this. It’s when you elaborately gain disproportionate power in any society where you would stand out, you must take care when attempting to make a society better (Civil Rights movement) and rewriting that society all together (mass immigration). Ask blacks in China, Mexico, Philippines or India how much opportunity they have? Go to businesses owned by their American diaspora and see how many blacks they hire. Go to Silicon Valley and see how many East or South Asian tech workers wish they could work with more black people. California might work as a state, but as a nation, I think your rolling the nuclear dice here. I hope we can succeed as a tolerant pluralistic superpower but at this stage in human societal development, it’s a pipe dream.

    And if Jews really are the icon for success, they would see that fundamental human successes happen over generations. Just look at the rest of the planet? Are we ready?