Dr0110111001101111 t1_j0ma47m wrote

Re: your edit- It’s not about getting it refined in time. It’s that oil is traded on an international market. So it doesn’t matter who buys our oil. It just matters that is being added to the global supply, which drives prices down globally. We can’t do much to influence gas prices domestically without those actions having similar impacts globally.

The benefit of this is that we can sell it to the highest bidder even if they are purchasing it overseas, and it will still benefit us at the pump locally


Dr0110111001101111 t1_j0lz1m4 wrote

Gasoline prices are largely determined by the price of crude oil. Crude oil is traded on an international market. It doesn’t matter where the crude goes. As long as it’s introduced to the market, it brings down the price. So it makes sense for the United States to simply sell it to the highest bidder, which is exactly what they did.

Keeping the oil “for ourselves” doesn’t mean anything unless we nationalize the entire American oil industry. I’m actually all for that, but I suspect you are not.


Dr0110111001101111 t1_iyf6x8y wrote

We don't usually think of "infinity" as a number, so it doesn't make sense to think about multiplying it by anything. It can seem like it's giving you some good intuition about why something is true, but there are several places where that line of thinking can lead you to some strange (and incorrect) results.


Dr0110111001101111 t1_iyezsop wrote

I mentioned it in another comment. When it comes to infinite sets, we have two sizes: countable and uncountable.

A countable set is a set where you can make a rule that binds each number to a number in the set of natural (counting) numbers. So for example, the set of positive, even numbers is countable because we can say "the first one is 2, the second one is 4, the third one is 6..." etc. There's an organized way to do this.

We can also make a similar rule for all even numbers: the first one is zero, second is 2, third is -2, fourth is 4, fifth is -4, and so on. This means that the set of all even numbers and the set of positive even numbers are both countable and therefore the same "size".

Things get weird when you try to do this for the real numbers. You can say the first one is 0, but then what comes next? What rule can you produce in the way I did above to be sure that you can "count" all of them? It turns out it's impossible. It's also impossible to do it just with the real numbers between 0 and 1. You can't even do it with the real numbers between 0 and 0.000001. As a result we say that these sets are all "uncountable" and therefore the same size.

As an interesting side note, it turns out that the rational numbers are countable, which surprised a lot of people. A mathematician named Cantor proved this with an ingenious strategy known as the diagonalization argument.


Dr0110111001101111 t1_iyewx3s wrote

That's not how we measure the size of infinite sets.

The set of all even numbers is the same size as the set of all whole numbers. The set of whole numbers is smaller than the set of real numbers. The set of all real numbers on [0,1] is the same size as all real numbers.

We only use two "sizes" for infinite sets: countable and uncountable.


Dr0110111001101111 t1_ixgx182 wrote

I definitely think it would make us far more competitive, but I definitely wouldn’t assume that would guarantee elite status just because of population size.

You made a great example with Uruguay. Tiny country, consistently competitive. Meanwhile soccer is huge in India (compared to USA) but they rarely even get a team to qualify.


Dr0110111001101111 t1_ixguxd1 wrote

I agree that American soccer players train/develop similar to how American baseball/basketball players develop. The difference is that there are far fewer countries that have as much interest in those sports, so america can stand out better. Soccer is far more universal, so you have something closer to uniform exposure over the whole world.

With that said, look at a team like the Yankees. Only about half of them are actually American. Japan took the gold in the 2020 olympics. Don't confuse the MLB's ability to import talent with the notion that this country produces superior baseball players. Baseball would be unrecognizable without central america.


Dr0110111001101111 t1_ixgtjk1 wrote

That’s a secondary reason at best. The reality is that in most countries, prodigal soccer players are identified as teenagers, and soccer becomes their full time job before they complete high school. In the US, our farm system is mainly the NCAA. That means American soccer players are usually juggling high school, then college as they work through their most crucially developmental years. And with MLS being far less lucrative than other sports organizations, many of them have to keep some sort of backup plan in mind the whole time.

So by the time an American soccer player finishes college and is ready to go pro, their counterparts in Europe and South America have been playing full time without distractions for at least 5, but potentially 10 years. They’re barely literate, but they are miles ahead in competition.