The Thinker: Rich Galen


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Mullings by Rich Galen
An American Cyber-Column By Rich Galen
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Olympian Activities

Rich Galen

Monday July 30, 2012


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From Newport Beach, California

Home of Two of the World's
Most Beautiful Granddaughters

  • The Games of the XXX Olympics are under way and we know this is as big a deal as the Superbowl because of the Roman numerals.

  • With the cold weather even the Beach Volleyball women are covered up so at best (or worst) these are the Games of the PG Olympiad.

  • I'll wait until you see how truly funny that is.

  • Speaking of the Superbowl, I have a theory about how to improve the popularity of international soccer (usually mis-translated into English as "football"): Instead of only one point per Goooooaaaaaalllll! Make each goal worth six points like real football.

  • Then instead of a horribly boring U.S. victory over the United Arab Emirates, 4-2; it would have been a terribly exciting U.S. victory over the United Arab Emirates, 24-12.

  • Think about how American male eyeballs would slam shut every Sunday afternoon (and Monday, Thursday, and Sunday nights) if American football awarded one point for a touchdown, a half point for a field goal, and a sixth of a point for a kicked extra point or a third of a point for a run or pass extra point.

  • If the NFL scored the way international "football" is scored, Superbowl XLV (which, if my Roman-Numeral-to-Real-Numeral translator is working properly, was the 1,475th game) then the Packers would have defeated the Steelers 5¹/₆ to 4¹/₆.


    If you knew how long it took me to (a) calculate that the real score of the Packer/Steeler Superbowl (31-25) translated into 5¹/₆ to 4¹/₆ and (b) how long it too me to figure out how to format "¹/₆" you would join the Mullings Director of Standards & Practices in trying to have me committed.


  • As you might imagine the Twitter-verse was apoplectic over the opening ceremonies. Inasmuch as the Games of the XXX Olympiad are being held in London, England it is not clear to me why American political reporters were so enraged that the opening ceremonies were so British-centric.

  • One of the biggest screams of agony was over the two and a half hour piece dealing with Britain's National Health Service.

  • Someone Tweeted that the NHS is the largest single employer on the planet.

  • Naturally that darned near brought Google to its knees as both Anglophiles and pro-Obamacare Tweeters attempted to disprove such a ridiculous claim.

  • The claim was wrong, but not ridiculous. It's the fifth largest employer - maybe the fourth largest - on the planet.

  • According to the BBC, the largest single employer on the planet is the U.S. Department of Defense with 3.2 million employees. The DoD counts both uniformed service members and civilian employees in its census.

  • Number two is the Chinese military with 2.3 million. However, the Chinese only count uniformed service members so it is likely if we had a number for civilian employees, the Chinese would lead the parade

  • Third is Walmart with 2.1 million employees worldwide. Thus, Walmart is the largest civilian employer.

  • Fourth, according to the BBC accounting is McDonalds at 1.9 million employees. But, makes the point that 80 percent of McDonalds employees work for a franchisee, so you decide whether it belongs in the fourth spot or not.

  • Then, at number five (with the condition described above) is the National Health Service which the BBC puts at 1.7 million employees.

  • That seems like a lot of employees for a national healthcare system.

  • The UK, according to the CIA's World Factbook, has a population of about 63 million people.

  • Follow me, here.

  • With all the ballyhoo about Obamacare following the Supreme Court's decision just a month ago, I wondered how many people it might take to support a National Health Service in the U.S. of A.

  • Our population is about 314 million; just about five times the size of the U.K. If it takes as many people to manage our healthcare system per citizen as it does in the U.K then we can expect that, at full power, Obamacare will need 6.73 million employees to help you stay healthy.

  • 6.73 million is about the population of Washington State, so it will be as if every logger and barista in the country will have been drafted to work in Obamacare.

  • That is an Olympian endeavor.

  • On the Secret Decoder Ring today: A link to the BBC page showing the largest employers, photos of the Mull-Grand Daughters, and a topic-appropriate Catchy Caption of the day.

    -- END --

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