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(MEL Magazine)   "This is the enduring spirit of a superpower that can't get its sh*t together and convert to the metric system, build high-speed rail or guarantee universal health care"   (melmagazine.com) divider line
    More: Murica, Profanity, Beer pong, Metric system, good-faith effort, President Trump, best practices, enduring spirit of a superpower, symbolic start of summer  
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3300 clicks; posted to Politics » on 22 May 2020 at 11:33 AM (6 weeks ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook



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2020-05-22 6:54:06 PM  
Metric is a more simple system for more simple people.
 
2020-05-22 6:54:17 PM  

rga184: It should be telling that the empire that gave us imperial units changed to SI.

But we can't.


We use both. We've used both for at least the 33 years I've been alive in different applications. Why don't you go yell at Quebec for insisting on using English & French instead of just English?

Christ, so many people take such pride in speaking more than one language that they'll denigrate people who only speak one, but utilize more than one system of measurement to their one and suddenly you're the stubborn troglodyte.

I'll start using the metric system exclusively when the rest of the world speaks one language exclusively. And until someone figures out a way to make that happen, exclusive use of scientific units isn't going to happen either.
 
2020-05-22 7:43:41 PM  

shut_it_down: rga184:As I posted above, there's significant cost, efficiency and safety reasons to switch.

For me, I can tell you that if I had to calculate a dose of ounces per pound of a microounce per teaspoon medication and measure it out for a 220 lb patient, it's a lot more complicated and error prone than to do it in SI.

The products you use,many of which you rey on for safety, will have similar considerations.  It is a reason why a lot of industries as it is use metric.

The problem is, you still have to bring people into that system, so not teaching this stuff to kids in school is a problem.  Maybe you're too old to change, but the argument that it's going to cost us neglects other costs involved.  From manufacturing costs to safety and health costs.  It's not just about it being midly more convenient, it's that it's universally simpler and therefore cheaper and safer.

And yes, you are stubborn.  You are literally arguing to keep using a system that every country that used to use it, abandoned.  Including the country that invented it.

Medicine and engineering already use metric. You're trying to make the argument that we should go further, and there's just no compelling reason to. The costs to switching everything else over to metric would be astronomical. NASA alone would spend $370 million to convert, not to mention every other agency and state government. Every road sign on 4 million miles of roads would have to change. So why don't you convince some people to do studies quantifying the benefits of metric. Otherwise we're just arguing about how you feel about it, and that's pointless. You don't even seem to understand my position. I'm not arguing to keep a system. I'm arguing that there is not a compelling enough reason to change.

I can also do without the "every other country does it this way" argument. That's textbook bandwagon fallacy.


I'm making an argument that we should teach it, and eventually the switch will be natural.  My daughter just had a workbook on units and 90 percent of the pages were on imperial. If we taught it in schools there would be no argument about switching, we would just eventually switch.

And yes,if you're going to use it in medicine and engineering then you can't have a school system that doesn't prepare future workers for that.
 
2020-05-22 7:48:48 PM  

shut_it_down: rga184:As I posted above, there's significant cost, efficiency and safety reasons to switch.

For me, I can tell you that if I had to calculate a dose of ounces per pound of a microounce per teaspoon medication and measure it out for a 220 lb patient, it's a lot more complicated and error prone than to do it in SI.

The products you use,many of which you rey on for safety, will have similar considerations.  It is a reason why a lot of industries as it is use metric.

The problem is, you still have to bring people into that system, so not teaching this stuff to kids in school is a problem.  Maybe you're too old to change, but the argument that it's going to cost us neglects other costs involved.  From manufacturing costs to safety and health costs.  It's not just about it being midly more convenient, it's that it's universally simpler and therefore cheaper and safer.

And yes, you are stubborn.  You are literally arguing to keep using a system that every country that used to use it, abandoned.  Including the country that invented it.

Medicine and engineering already use metric. You're trying to make the argument that we should go further, and there's just no compelling reason to. The costs to switching everything else over to metric would be astronomical. NASA alone would spend $370 million to convert, not to mention every other agency and state government. Every road sign on 4 million miles of roads would have to change. So why don't you convince some people to do studies quantifying the benefits of metric. Otherwise we're just arguing about how you feel about it, and that's pointless. You don't even seem to understand my position. I'm not arguing to keep a system. I'm arguing that there is not a compelling enough reason to change.

I can also do without the "every other country does it this way" argument. That's textbook bandwagon fallacy.


Roadsigns rust and fall down.  As you fix them and replace them include metric units.

We can take the 370 million off the F35's budget.  It's a drip.in the bucket.

As for categorizing it as a bandwagon.  It's not,I've given you numerous examples of how adopting an international system would be more efficient and safe.
 
2020-05-22 8:01:09 PM  

rga184: I'm making an argument that we should teach it, and eventually the switch will be natural.  My daughter just had a workbook on units and 90 percent of the pages were on imperial. If we taught it in schools there would be no argument about switching, we would just eventually switch.

And yes,if you're going to use it in medicine and engineering then you can't have a school system that doesn't prepare future workers for that.


I'm fine with teaching it in schools. There's nothing inherently wrong with the metric system. But even with people who can mentally switch without much problem, there will still be untold billions that would need to be spent changing things over, and this country can't even agree to stop using the penny. I also don't think that "confusion with the system of measurements" is a factor that's preventing people from going into engineering or medicine. Units of measurement are such a low hurdle to anyone of moderate intelligence that it's a reach to claim that we would be bettering our workforce to remove that low hurdle. Units of measurement are probably the least challenging parts of those fields.
 
2020-05-22 8:04:28 PM  

Loaded Six String: rga184: It should be telling that the empire that gave us imperial units changed to SI.

But we can't.

We use both. We've used both for at least the 33 years I've been alive in different applications. Why don't you go yell at Quebec for insisting on using English & French instead of just English?

Christ, so many people take such pride in speaking more than one language that they'll denigrate people who only speak one, but utilize more than one system of measurement to their one and suddenly you're the stubborn troglodyte.

I'll start using the metric system exclusively when the rest of the world speaks one language exclusively. And until someone figures out a way to make that happen, exclusive use of scientific units isn't going to happen either.


Yes, because languages and units of measurement are totally the same.
 
2020-05-22 8:14:00 PM  

shut_it_down: rga184: I'm making an argument that we should teach it, and eventually the switch will be natural.  My daughter just had a workbook on units and 90 percent of the pages were on imperial. If we taught it in schools there would be no argument about switching, we would just eventually switch.

And yes,if you're going to use it in medicine and engineering then you can't have a school system that doesn't prepare future workers for that.

I'm fine with teaching it in schools. There's nothing inherently wrong with the metric system. But even with people who can mentally switch without much problem, there will still be untold billions that would need to be spent changing things over, and this country can't even agree to stop using the penny. I also don't think that "confusion with the system of measurements" is a factor that's preventing people from going into engineering or medicine. Units of measurement are such a low hurdle to anyone of moderate intelligence that it's a reach to claim that we would be bettering our workforce to remove that low hurdle. Units of measurement are probably the least challenging parts of those fields.


I never said confusion with units were a hurdle preventing people from going into these areas.  But do you really want a medical environment to be the first time somebody starts using the metric system for real?
 
2020-05-22 8:19:27 PM  

rga184: Roadsigns rust and fall down.  As you fix them and replace them include metric units.

We can take the 370 million off the F35's budget.  It's a drip.in the bucket.

As for categorizing it as a bandwagon.  It's not,I've given you numerous examples of how adopting an international system would be more efficient and safe.


First, road signs don't get changed terribly frequently, so if you're fine with waiting upwards of 7 years to switch to dual signs, then go for it. Second, if you find a way to decrease the military budget then be my guest. But the $370 million is the cost to change one federal agency, and there are 167 federal agencies, plus 50 states with their own agencies, too. No matter how you slice it, the cost will be enormous and the benefits middling. Third, saying that everyone else is doing something so we should do it to is literally the definition of the bandwagon fallacy. At the end of the day, we don't have an international system on basically anything. Language, currency, law, electrical plugs, etc. I'm not going to lose any sleep over our measurements being different. As to an international system being more efficient and safe, you've listed some anecdotes about issues with conversions, but anecdotes aren't data. You can find an anecdote to support any position in the world.
 
2020-05-22 8:38:29 PM  

rga184: Loaded Six String: rga184: It should be telling that the empire that gave us imperial units changed to SI.

But we can't.

We use both. We've used both for at least the 33 years I've been alive in different applications. Why don't you go yell at Quebec for insisting on using English & French instead of just English?

Christ, so many people take such pride in speaking more than one language that they'll denigrate people who only speak one, but utilize more than one system of measurement to their one and suddenly you're the stubborn troglodyte.

I'll start using the metric system exclusively when the rest of the world speaks one language exclusively. And until someone figures out a way to make that happen, exclusive use of scientific units isn't going to happen either.

Yes, because languages and units of measurement are totally the same.


How are they not? They're methods of expressing information from one person to another. Trying to discard all non metric systems of measure globally is going to be as difficult as discarding all but one spoken language globally for many of the same reasons. We can and do use both in the U.S. just not to a degree of use to your liking.
 
2020-05-22 8:39:14 PM  

shut_it_down: rga184: Roadsigns rust and fall down.  As you fix them and replace them include metric units.

We can take the 370 million off the F35's budget.  It's a drip.in the bucket.

As for categorizing it as a bandwagon.  It's not,I've given you numerous examples of how adopting an international system would be more efficient and safe.

First, road signs don't get changed terribly frequently, so if you're fine with waiting upwards of 7 years to switch to dual signs, then go for it.


As opposed to "never"?
Hell yeah!
 
2020-05-22 8:40:10 PM  

rga184: shut_it_down: rga184: I'm making an argument that we should teach it, and eventually the switch will be natural.  My daughter just had a workbook on units and 90 percent of the pages were on imperial. If we taught it in schools there would be no argument about switching, we would just eventually switch.

And yes,if you're going to use it in medicine and engineering then you can't have a school system that doesn't prepare future workers for that.

I'm fine with teaching it in schools. There's nothing inherently wrong with the metric system. But even with people who can mentally switch without much problem, there will still be untold billions that would need to be spent changing things over, and this country can't even agree to stop using the penny. I also don't think that "confusion with the system of measurements" is a factor that's preventing people from going into engineering or medicine. Units of measurement are such a low hurdle to anyone of moderate intelligence that it's a reach to claim that we would be bettering our workforce to remove that low hurdle. Units of measurement are probably the least challenging parts of those fields.

I never said confusion with units were a hurdle preventing people from going into these areas.  But do you really want a medical environment to be the first time somebody starts using the metric system for real?


And by medical environment you mean medical/nursing school? Because you're not working in a medical environment until you pass your classes and licensing exams. If you walk into school somehow knowing nothing of the metric system but learn it and pass, then I have no issue with them at all. The metric system isn't inherently difficult. It's the switching to it that's a biatch.
 
2020-05-22 9:17:53 PM  

EyeballKid: America is a shiathole country.


Well, bye.
 
2020-05-22 9:29:02 PM  

SpecialSnowFlake: That's what repeating 'we're the best at everything' over and over gets you: people who believe it unconditionally, despite all evidence to the contrary.

No healthcare? Well, I guess that's the best 'cause we're the best.

Too poor to live despite working multiple jobs? Well, I guess that's the best 'cause we're the best.

Dying because masks are just too darn hard for some folks? Well, I guess that's the best 'cause we're the best.



I first ran into that when I nearly got into multiple fist fights when the movie "The Day After Came Out" (1984?), and the other 5th or 6th graders were violently insistent that there's no way America could ever be nuked, that it'd never happen to us, and foolish me just stating facts made them apoplectic and want to fight me.

Unfortunately, it seems America is now largely filled with adults who never made it past that stage.
 
2020-05-22 9:29:58 PM  
Man, a whole lotta people are super pissed at the idea of either converting, or not converting. Of all the things to argue about...this is a kinda dumb one.

Teach both. Post signs in both. Make it easier to acclimate to both.

/will always love imperial because .45 caliber is far cooler than 11.65mm.
 
2020-05-23 1:12:42 AM  
Growing up with both system, I use both systems. I think of large distances as a mix of miles and kilometres, measurements inches and centimetres, weights are imperial for cooking and metric for shopping, volumes mostly metric, temperature is exclusively in Celsius.
I'm in my fifties, and I imagine that the last couple of generations are more geared to thinking in metric.
But you know when I'm pretty much exclusively using metric? Any measurement that requires precision and calculation.
And you wonder why it's so hard to keep kids interested in science in the US?
 
2020-05-23 1:23:16 PM  

shut_it_down: rga184: shut_it_down: rga184: I'm making an argument that we should teach it, and eventually the switch will be natural.  My daughter just had a workbook on units and 90 percent of the pages were on imperial. If we taught it in schools there would be no argument about switching, we would just eventually switch.

And yes,if you're going to use it in medicine and engineering then you can't have a school system that doesn't prepare future workers for that.

I'm fine with teaching it in schools. There's nothing inherently wrong with the metric system. But even with people who can mentally switch without much problem, there will still be untold billions that would need to be spent changing things over, and this country can't even agree to stop using the penny. I also don't think that "confusion with the system of measurements" is a factor that's preventing people from going into engineering or medicine. Units of measurement are such a low hurdle to anyone of moderate intelligence that it's a reach to claim that we would be bettering our workforce to remove that low hurdle. Units of measurement are probably the least challenging parts of those fields.

I never said confusion with units were a hurdle preventing people from going into these areas.  But do you really want a medical environment to be the first time somebody starts using the metric system for real?

And by medical environment you mean medical/nursing school? Because you're not working in a medical environment until you pass your classes and licensing exams. If you walk into school somehow knowing nothing of the metric system but learn it and pass, then I have no issue with them at all. The metric system isn't inherently difficult. It's the switching to it that's a biatch.


You are absolutely working in a medical environment starting third year of med school, in some cases sooner.  And while a med student doesn't sign orders, good med students are often trusted to gather info for rounds in the morning.

Residents, and more specifically, interns are the ones I would worry about.  And I would.  It only takes one time of somebody in the ICU calculating a precedex drip or a remifentanyl drip for your weight in lbs instead of kilos and putting you in real life or death danger.

And before you say that residents have proven their intelligence to not make those mistakes, those mistakes have actually happened.  As a matter of fact, weights of patients are often taken and recorded by MAs or CNAs, not doctors or residents or med students.  And I have seen multiple cases of a weight in lbs recorded as a weight in kilos.  This can be deadly in the pediatric setting, where it's harder to discern whether a weight is wrong just by looking at it (in adults, for example, a 220 kg patient would likely have a diagnosis of super obesity or at least morbid obesity).

You are clearly not an adherent of American exceptionalism.  Apparently we just won't be able to handle the change.  Never mind that NASA single unit error probably cost more than the budget would cost to convert.  And not every agency deals with units.

But you win.  I agree we actually kind of suck as a country that is willing to spend billions on replacing one murderous dictator for another for the sake of cheap oil but can't spend a few million to make sure that the next aircraft NASA sends out doesn't slam into the surface of the planet on entry because a ROCKET SCIENTIST (an actual smart person, not like a doctor) couldn't figure out a conversion.

At least we agree on that.  We lack the will to do anything because, we just aren't all that compelled to do it.  There's just not a compelling reason.  Americans in a nutshell.
 
2020-05-23 1:25:38 PM  

Kit Fister: Man, a whole lotta people are super pissed at the idea of either converting, or not converting. Of all the things to argue about...this is a kinda dumb one.

Teach both. Post signs in both. Make it easier to acclimate to both.

/will always love imperial because .45 caliber is far cooler than 11.65mm.


I've been arguing to even gradually replace signs to include both and even that "doesn't have a compelling enough reason" to do it.
 
2020-05-23 3:11:08 PM  

rga184: Kit Fister: Man, a whole lotta people are super pissed at the idea of either converting, or not converting. Of all the things to argue about...this is a kinda dumb one.

Teach both. Post signs in both. Make it easier to acclimate to both.

/will always love imperial because .45 caliber is far cooler than 11.65mm.

I've been arguing to even gradually replace signs to include both and even that "doesn't have a compelling enough reason" to do it.


People don't agree with you on it. Nothing to get mad about.
 
2020-05-23 4:18:59 PM  

Kit Fister: rga184: Kit Fister: Man, a whole lotta people are super pissed at the idea of either converting, or not converting. Of all the things to argue about...this is a kinda dumb one.

Teach both. Post signs in both. Make it easier to acclimate to both.

/will always love imperial because .45 caliber is far cooler than 11.65mm.

I've been arguing to even gradually replace signs to include both and even that "doesn't have a compelling enough reason" to do it.

People don't agree with you on it. Nothing to get mad about.


Lol, there's some here that do.  And no, I'm not mad, I just find your reasoning incredibly frustrating.  There's so many things, expensive and bad things, that we do in this country without any "compelling reason" for it, yet here we are using an inefficient, outdated system because there's no compelling reason to change.  All the while ignoring the fact that the fact that it's inefficient and outdated should be compelling enough for our leaders.
 
2020-05-23 4:28:51 PM  
 
2020-05-23 4:36:11 PM  
This one has some references worth looking at as well.

https://www.nccmerp.org/recommendatio​n​s-weigh-patients-and-document-metric-w​eights-ensure-accurate-medication-dosi​ng-adopted

I would suggest that even though healthcare is largely into the metric system, parents are still sent home with scripts to measure mL, and anybody from a doc to a medical assistant or even a CNA can introduce an error that could prove fatal.  So familiarity with the system is still important even, and not just for docs, but for patients and parents.  That being the case, there is no reason why we as a country shouldn't teach the metric system universally and extensively in school.  From that point, as people become used to the system, completing a conversion to metric would not be a significant bother to a generation that grew up learning it.
 
2020-05-23 5:49:07 PM  

rga184: Kit Fister: rga184: Kit Fister: Man, a whole lotta people are super pissed at the idea of either converting, or not converting. Of all the things to argue about...this is a kinda dumb one.

Teach both. Post signs in both. Make it easier to acclimate to both.

/will always love imperial because .45 caliber is far cooler than 11.65mm.

I've been arguing to even gradually replace signs to include both and even that "doesn't have a compelling enough reason" to do it.

People don't agree with you on it. Nothing to get mad about.

Lol, there's some here that do.  And no, I'm not mad, I just find your reasoning incredibly frustrating.  There's so many things, expensive and bad things, that we do in this country without any "compelling reason" for it, yet here we are using an inefficient, outdated system because there's no compelling reason to change.  All the while ignoring the fact that the fact that it's inefficient and outdated should be compelling enough for our leaders.


as others have mentioned, many industries already use metric. I learned metric in school. Have to know it for gunsmithing and Other engineering stuff I do. Whether people use it for common everyday stuff, though, I'd their choice, since miles vs. km, in vs cm, etc, really doesn't matter for common stuff. Get over it.
 
2020-05-23 5:53:52 PM  
I think this perfectly sums up rga184:

Fark user imageView Full Size
 
2020-05-23 7:02:13 PM  

Kit Fister: I think this perfectly sums up rga184:

[Fark user image image 600x673]


Oh come now Mr Kister, I live in a country where SI and Imperial sit side by side happily, nobody throws tantrums about the roadsigns being in MPH or the beer sold in pints, neither do they whine about being sold kilos of vegetables, butchers even put both prices on their tickets in the chiller, £/lb and £/kg. Maybe America can manage the same without y'all getting all 2nd Amendment about it or even throwing biatchy memes at each other.

/Nah,
//not gonna
///happen.
 
2020-05-23 7:07:03 PM  

Kit Fister: I think this perfectly sums up rga184:

[Fark user image image 600x673]


I could say the same thing about people here who don't like metric, right?

My point isn't that I have a personal preference for it.  All my posts have been about concrete reasons to make the switch.  If you want to set your bathroom scale to stone or pounds, whatever.
 
2020-05-23 7:15:06 PM  

Gpzjock: Kit Fister: I think this perfectly sums up rga184:

[Fark user image image 600x673]

Oh come now Mr Kister, I live in a country where SI and Imperial sit side by side happily, nobody throws tantrums about the roadsigns being in MPH or the beer sold in pints, neither do they whine about being sold kilos of vegetables, butchers even put both prices on their tickets in the chiller, £/lb and £/kg. Maybe America can manage the same without y'all getting all 2nd Amendment about it or even throwing biatchy memes at each other.

/Nah,
//not gonna
///happen.


There's an adage in error analysis that says that any system that allows for an error to occur, will produce that error.

You cannot have conversion errors if you don't have conversions.  I have personally seen and caught those errors, and they would have been detrimental to my patients' wellbeing if I hadn't caught them.  If that makes me "stop liking what I don't like" kid, guilty.
 
2020-05-23 7:26:50 PM  

rga184: Gpzjock: Kit Fister: I think this perfectly sums up rga184:

[Fark user image image 600x673]

Oh come now Mr Kister, I live in a country where SI and Imperial sit side by side happily, nobody throws tantrums about the roadsigns being in MPH or the beer sold in pints, neither do they whine about being sold kilos of vegetables, butchers even put both prices on their tickets in the chiller, £/lb and £/kg. Maybe America can manage the same without y'all getting all 2nd Amendment about it or even throwing biatchy memes at each other.

/Nah,
//not gonna
///happen.

There's an adage in error analysis that says that any system that allows for an error to occur, will produce that error.

You cannot have conversion errors if you don't have conversions.  I have personally seen and caught those errors, and they would have been detrimental to my patients' wellbeing if I hadn't caught them.  If that makes me "stop liking what I don't like" kid, guilty.


Convertion errors are of no consequence in selling meat, beer or even writing the Highway Code, when all your science and medicine is done in SI it needs no convertion. The UK only kept Imperial units where it didn't matter and there was no danger to the public. It does help folk get a handle on fractions nicely too, as I mentioned before.
 
2020-05-23 7:46:19 PM  

Gpzjock: rga184: Gpzjock: Kit Fister: I think this perfectly sums up rga184:

[Fark user image image 600x673]

Oh come now Mr Kister, I live in a country where SI and Imperial sit side by side happily, nobody throws tantrums about the roadsigns being in MPH or the beer sold in pints, neither do they whine about being sold kilos of vegetables, butchers even put both prices on their tickets in the chiller, £/lb and £/kg. Maybe America can manage the same without y'all getting all 2nd Amendment about it or even throwing biatchy memes at each other.

/Nah,
//not gonna
///happen.

There's an adage in error analysis that says that any system that allows for an error to occur, will produce that error.

You cannot have conversion errors if you don't have conversions.  I have personally seen and caught those errors, and they would have been detrimental to my patients' wellbeing if I hadn't caught them.  If that makes me "stop liking what I don't like" kid, guilty.

Convertion errors are of no consequence in selling meat, beer or even writing the Highway Code, when all your science and medicine is done in SI it needs no convertion. The UK only kept Imperial units where it didn't matter and there was no danger to the public. It does help folk get a handle on fractions nicely too, as I mentioned before.


precisely what I was trying to say. And no, rga, I'm not one of those opposed to switching, though if go more with what the above suggested by preference.

I just think you're being really silly with the forcefulness with which you chose to argue it.
 
2020-05-24 12:16:32 AM  

Kit Fister: Gpzjock: rga184: Gpzjock: Kit Fister: I think this perfectly sums up rga184:

[Fark user image image 600x673]

Oh come now Mr Kister, I live in a country where SI and Imperial sit side by side happily, nobody throws tantrums about the roadsigns being in MPH or the beer sold in pints, neither do they whine about being sold kilos of vegetables, butchers even put both prices on their tickets in the chiller, £/lb and £/kg. Maybe America can manage the same without y'all getting all 2nd Amendment about it or even throwing biatchy memes at each other.

/Nah,
//not gonna
///happen.

There's an adage in error analysis that says that any system that allows for an error to occur, will produce that error.

You cannot have conversion errors if you don't have conversions.  I have personally seen and caught those errors, and they would have been detrimental to my patients' wellbeing if I hadn't caught them.  If that makes me "stop liking what I don't like" kid, guilty.

Convertion errors are of no consequence in selling meat, beer or even writing the Highway Code, when all your science and medicine is done in SI it needs no convertion. The UK only kept Imperial units where it didn't matter and there was no danger to the public. It does help folk get a handle on fractions nicely too, as I mentioned before.

precisely what I was trying to say. And no, rga, I'm not one of those opposed to switching, though if go more with what the above suggested by preference.

I just think you're being really silly with the forcefulness with which you chose to argue it.


Actually, I'm fine with grocery shopping or whatever being in pounds or hogsheads.   Like you said, those are not safety critical.  I do think it should be taught universally in schools and to a greater extent than imperial units to facilitate it's use when it is required.
 
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