E = MC2 ? Yes, It’s Quiz Day.

“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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Don’t worry, I’m not asking you to prove the theory of relativity or anything like that, although the ‘E’ does crop up in one of the questions.

But there are a few easy ones mixed in as well, so why not have a go?

If you get stuck you can, as always, find the answers waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay down below, but please NO cheating!

Enjoy and good luck.

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quiz host

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Q.  1:  Was 1998 a leap year?

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Q.  2:  What (domestic) animal gives us the most by-products?

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Q.  3:  What city is known as the Paris of South America?

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Q.  4:  What does an ‘oologist’ (pronounced oo-all-o-gist) collect or study?

           a) shoe laces          b) stamps          c) bird eggs          d) rare coins

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Q.  5:  What’s the term for water induction process in plants?

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Q.  6:  In which American state is Cape Canaveral, a launching site for space travel?

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Q.  7:  This metal is the main element in Bronze and constitutes approximately 10% of Yellow Gold, what is it?

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Q.  8:  What does the ‘E’ represent in the equation  E = MC2?

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Q.  9:  Which bird turns its head upside down to eat?

    a) the stork        b) the albatross        c) the flamingo        d) the swan

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Q. 10:  LOT is the national airline of which country?

            a) Peru          b) Lithuania          c) Poland          d) Latvia

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Q. 11:  What are the two major groups of islands off the north-east coast of Scotland?

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Q. 12:  ‘Richard Hannay’ is the chief protagonist in what John Buchan novel?

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Q. 13:  What is the name of Caractacus Potts’ 12- cylinder, eight-litre, supercharged Paragon Panther?

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Q. 14:  As well as being the first woman mayor in England, Elizabeth Garrett Anderson was the first woman to qualify in which profession?

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Q. 15:  What general name is given to a female donkey?

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Q. 16:  What name is given to the natural grassland area of southern Brazil, Argentina and Uruguay?

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Q. 17:  According to legend, which creatures did Saint Patrick banish from Ireland?

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Q. 18:  What is an estate, large farm or ranch called in Spanish-speaking countries?

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Q. 19:  Who is the wizard in The Hobbit?

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Q. 20:  From which country does Samba dancing come?

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ANSWERS

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Q.  1:  Was 1998 a leap year?

A.  1:  No.

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Q.  2:  What (domestic) animal gives us the most by-products?

A.  2:  The Pig.

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Q.  3:  What city is known as the Paris of South America?

A.  3:  Buenos Aires In Argentina.

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Q.  4:  What does an ‘oologist’ (pronounced oo-all-o-gist) collect or study?

           a) shoe laces          b) stamps          c) bird eggs          d) rare coins

A.  4:  The correct answer is c) bird eggs.

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Q.  5:  What’s the term for water induction process in plants

A.  5:  Osmosis.

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Q.  6:  In which American state is Cape Canaveral, a launching site for space travel?

A.  6:  It is in Florida.

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Q.  7:  This metal is the main element in Bronze and constitutes approximately 10% of Yellow Gold, what is it?

A.  7:  It is Copper.

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Q.  8:  What does the ‘E’ represent in the equation  E = MC2?

A.  8:  The ‘E’ represents ‘Energy’.

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Q.  9:  Which bird turns its head upside down to eat?

    a) the stork        b) the albatross        c) the flamingo        d) the swan

A.  9:  The correct answer is c) the flamingo.

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Q. 10:  LOT is the national airline of which country?

            a) Peru          b) Lithuania          c) Poland          d) Latvia

A. 10:  The correct answer is c) Poland.

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Q. 11:  What are the two major groups of islands off the north-east coast of Scotland?

A. 11:  They are the Orkney Islands and the Shetland Islands.

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Q. 12:  ‘Richard Hannay’ is the chief protagonist in what John Buchan novel?

A. 12:  The 39 Steps.

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Q. 13:  What is the name of Caractacus Potts’ 12- cylinder, eight-litre, supercharged Paragon Panther?

A. 13:  It is Chitty Chitty Bang Bang.

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Q. 14:  As well as being the first woman mayor in England, Elizabeth Garrett Anderson was the first woman to qualify in which profession?

A. 14:  As a doctor.

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Q. 15:  What general name is given to a female donkey?

A. 15:  A Jenny.

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Q. 16:  What name is given to the natural grassland area of southern Brazil, Argentina and Uruguay?

A. 16:  The Pampas.

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Q. 17:  According to legend, which creatures did Saint Patrick banish from Ireland?

A. 17:  Snakes.

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Q. 18:  What is an estate, large farm or ranch called in Spanish-speaking countries?

A. 18:  It is called a Hacienda.

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Q. 19:  Who is the wizard in The Hobbit?

A. 19:  Gandalf.

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Q. 20:  From which country does Samba dancing come?

A. 20:  Brazil.

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Is Your Life Insured?

“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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It’s an interesting question.

But worry not, I am not going to try to sell you an insurance policy nor even recommend one.

Quite the reverse in fact.

Many people have some kind of life insurance for the financial protection of their families if they should be unfortunate to pass away unexpectedly.

It is usually for enough money to pay off the mortgage with a little left over to provide some kind of income for the wife and kids.

At least that’s how it should be.

dead peasants indursnce

But there is a growing trend for employers to insure their employees. A nice gesture you might think at first. Until you find out that the beneficiary of the insurance would not be the survivors or estate of the insured employee, but the corporate pension plan!

It is unofficially known as “dead peasant” insurance, and hundreds of corporations have already taken out policies worth hundreds of billions of dollars, on thousands of employees, providing companies with a steady stream of income as current and former employees die  –  even decades after they have retired or left the company.

And new “dead peasant”policies worth at least $1 billion are being put in place every year!

Unsurprisingly the greedy money-grabbing banksters are especially fond of the practice. Bank of America’s policies have a cash surrender value of at least $17.6 billion; Wells Fargo’s at least $12.7 billion; and JPMorgan Chase at least $5 billion, according to filings with the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council.

corporate greed

Of course the tax-men are to blame too – aren’t they always? – because so-called company-owned life insurance offers employers generous tax breaks. For example, company-paid premiums are tax-free, as are any investment returns on the policies and the death benefits eventually received. Although having said that it has to be admitted (grudgingly) that the I.R.S. has taken companies including Winn-Dixie and Camelot Music to court for using such policies as tax avoidance schemes.

Many people faced with a request from an employer to consent to such a policy are too afraid not to comply in case it affects their job or promotion prospects. They shouldn’t be because that would probably be illegal as well as unethical. Class-action lawsuits against several companies with such policies are already underway or have been settled. Several companies, including Walmart, settled the suits, paying millions to low-ranking employees who had been covered.

So if you are uncomfortable with the thought that your company might profit from your death, don’t sign up.

And as for the corporations? I’m as fond of making a few bucks as the next man, but you have to draw a line somewhere and I think corporations should be content with the contribution their employees make to their company profits when they are alive, instead of conniving to profit from their deaths also.

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