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News and analysis: Lego Friends sells well, Organic food is no healthier, Bulgaria nixes EU membership plans

Lego’s Friends line has been a huge success. I’m mostly pleased by this, but I have somewhat complicated feelings.

I have a daughter, and it’s a little frustrating that the opportunities provided for girls to play a career include a beautician, a veterinarian, a horse trainer, a baker, a fashion designer, and a rock star. I’m glad they included the inventor but it smacks of tokenism. It’s also frustrating that there’s a bunny house and a pet patrol and a horse trailer and a puppy house–it’s bunnies and puppies and kittens and pink and purple. I’m just as offended, I suppose, by the violence in a lot of the boys’ kits, but with the inclusion of molded figures that don’t match minifig scale, the City and Creator Lego sets don’t seem intended to integrate into the Friends’ world.

My hope is that the crazy success of Friends’ means that they’ll release new models annually–and you can’t build a beauty shop every year. Here’s hoping we get to see ambulance drivers and astronauts and architects this go-round (and that’s just the A’s).

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Economics is a science. An awesome science. Newton, Feynman, Maxwell, Hooke, et al. would agree.

I wrote this in reply to a list-serv conversation with some criticisms of economics as a  science, and since I still work for my supper, I figured in addition to making lemonade, I would clone that lemonade with the handy-dandy Replicator function on my futuristic writing contraption. The names have been changed to protect the innocent (Not very much. Einstein was changed to Galileo, and Galileo was changed to Einstein. I just switched the ‘n’s in Newton, and the same with Feynman. With Hooke it was the ‘o’s. Maxwell is not innocent, so I left his name as is.).

Enjoy!

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