Thursday, March 15, 2018

Does anybody really know what time it is?

This is clearly not George.
If you would like to continue believing that we are a rational people, that's your privilege. You might enjoy being a climate hysteric.

On the other hand, if you are not certain of your ability to predict the last day on Earth, you might still be recovering from and wondering why we still honor Daylight Savings Time.

George Vernon Hudson (1867 – 1946), a British-born New Zealand award-winning entomologist and astronomer, came up with the idea, and we can thank him for the following:

More deadly car crashes
The single hour of lost sleep in the switch to DST increases the fatal crash rate in the U.S. by a calculated 5.4 to 7.6 percent for a full six days following the transition. By one researcher’s estimate, that’s 302 more deaths over ten years.
Increased workplace injuries 
Sleep deprivation only increases the rate of workplace injuries by 5.7 percent on the Monday after the switch. But the real effect is in days of work lost to those injuries: 2,649 in total, for an increase in 67.6 percent. In the fall, when we get a bonus hour of sleep instead of losing shut-eye, there’s no known injury increase. 
Stock markets do slightly worse
All those probably-already-sleep-deprived-and-now-even-more-so traders on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange perform ever-so-slightly worse on the Monday after DST. NASDAQ closes, on average, about 0.3 points lower. It’s worth noting that there’s actually a dip on every Monday, on average, though it’s smaller. Everyone’s least favorite weekday often closes 0.1 points lower than other trading days. 
More heart attacks
Disrupting your sleep cycle upsets your autonomic nervous system. You make slightly more proinflammatory molecules and you’re more stressed overall. This all adds up to a 24 percent increase in heart attacks on the Monday after DST goes into effect. One study also found that the fall change, in which we get an hour more of sleep, produced a 21 percent decrease in heart attacks on the Tuesday after.
Legal sentences are longer
Like judges who are hungry, sleep-deprived legal minds tend to be harsher on their defendants. Sentences are a very slight 5 percent longer when handed down on the day after DST.
Why are we doing this? I'll tell you why. Because George Hudson liked the extra daylight hours at the end of the day in which he could collect insects. I'm not making this up. You could look it up. I did.

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