Last chance to help me break my neck

If I go ballistic tomorrow to raise money for Shatterproof and you didn’t contribute, won’t you feel silly?

Tomorrow is the day I rappel down a 21-story building to raise funds for Shatterproof.

Just imagine how silly you will feel if I demonstrate the Law of Gravitation (by going into free fall for roughly 4.43 seconds, after allowing for air resistance) and the Law of the Conservation of Energy (by first converting the gravitational potential of 120 kg at 90 m above ground level into kinetic energy and then rapidly converting that roughly 82,000 joules’ worth of kinetic energy into heat and various forms of vibration) without your financial support. Of course, the rope is intended to prevent those rather impressive illustrations of high-school mechanics, but there’s always a chance.

I’ve already promised my students that if I go ballistic they don’t have to take the final. And no, UCLA students are not allowed to contribute.

Footnote Angela Hawken fully intended to be on the other rope, but she has been summoned to Olympia to instruct the Washington State legislature on the principles of swift-certain-fair sanctioning. That reduces the total value-at-risk tomorrow by something upwards of 90%.

Author: Mark Kleiman

Professor of Public Policy at the NYU Marron Institute for Urban Management and editor of the Journal of Drug Policy Analysis. Teaches about the methods of policy analysis about drug abuse control and crime control policy, working out the implications of two principles: that swift and certain sanctions don't have to be severe to be effective, and that well-designed threats usually don't have to be carried out. Books: Drugs and Drug Policy: What Everyone Needs to Know (with Jonathan Caulkins and Angela Hawken) When Brute Force Fails: How to Have Less Crime and Less Punishment (Princeton, 2009; named one of the "books of the year" by The Economist Against Excess: Drug Policy for Results (Basic, 1993) Marijuana: Costs of Abuse, Costs of Control (Greenwood, 1989) UCLA Homepage Curriculum Vitae Contact: Markarkleiman-at-gmail.com

4 thoughts on “Last chance to help me break my neck”

  1. Hey. What time is it happening?

    I guess if you-all are morning people, I missed it already.

  2. I just donated. I received a confirmation that read, in part, "To comply with IRS regulations regarding charitable donations, we affirm that no goods or services have been provided to you in consideration of your gift."

    Please note, I have conducted a word search in the IRS regulations. The word "schadenfreude" does not appear anywhere in the regs. Thus, if you agree to double your contribution if (i) Mark falls, and (ii) you can view a video thereof online, the entire amount of the increased contribution will still be deductible.

    1. Very interesting. I snooped around a little on the site, and it looks like they do have an official rooftop photographer, but any such video would have to be made from the ground, probably in the official viewing area. And of course, he isn't going to fall.

      For the cause though, I would imagine that he might let you photoshop something afterwards.

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