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Episode 143 - Stupid Lies From Pop Culture That Everybody Believes

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We all know Rome wasn't built in a day. But in the fake Hollywood adaptation, "Rome Wasn't Built in a Day," it's probably built over the course of a short montage set to peppy music, where it feels like it's built in 20 minutes.


That's one of the subtle lies movies and TV imprint on our minds- that monumental things can be achieved in relatively short periods of time or with relatively little effort. Doc Brown hits his head and comes up with the idea for a time machine, and the hardest part is sourcing plutonium from a crew of gullible Libyan terrorists. This myth of invention affects how we look at history too. In our minds, Thomas Edison is a guy who just pulled the idea for the light bulb out of thin air (or from about 3 inches above his head, right after he thought of it), but he's just the guy who happened to invent the best one.


These recurring myths are what we're talking about today. Jack O'Brien is joined by Cracked's Jason Pargin (aka David Wong) and Alex Schmidt to talk about this invention myth, why we mistakenly think the President controls the economy, how we assume that there are real-life criminals like movie criminals and why a bomb with a timer on it is the stupidest idea in the world.


Also, make sure to come see our THREE live shows this October!


First, at 9pm on Thursday, October 6th at the UCB Sunset Inner Sanctum, Jack O'Brien and Daniel O'Brien take a behind-the-scenes look at America's most underappreciated profession: teachers. Along with the cast of TruTV's 'Those Who Can't' and some real-life teachers who would like to remain anonymous, they'll take a look at the secret and alcohol-fueled lives of the people who we entrust to mold the minds of our nation's youth. Tickets are FREE, but it's first come, first serve, so make sure to arrive early. More info is available here: https://goo.gl/XcGndb


Next, at 7pm on Saturday, October 8th at the UCB Sunset Theatre, Jack O'Brien and Nick Mundy co-host a sequel to last year's Halloween episode. Cracked's Tom Reimann and comedians Eric Lampaert, Anna Seregina and Ryan Singer guest to share more real-life stories of death, disappearance and potentially the great beyond. Tickets are $5 and available here: https://goo.gl/wTyocv


Finally, you can see us on Saturday, October 29th at the Now Hear This podcast festival in Anaheim, California. The time is still TBA, but we're on an amazing lineup with other podcasts like WTF with Marc Maron, Doug Loves Movies, I Was There Too and Superego. Tickets and information available here: https://goo.gl/R8gzMX




Cracked: 4 Recurring Myths We Apparently Really Want to Believe: https://goo.gl/arDKS


The Atlantic: The President of the United States Does Not Control the Economy: https://goo.gl/iVdi4l


FiveThirtyEight: A President's Economic Decisions Matter...Eventually: https://goo.gl/6xtZB7


Slate: Do Freelance Assassins Really Exist?: https://goo.gl/tT50OV


NYT: Profile of notorious art thief Stephane Breitwiesser: https://goo.gl/IK9t4Y

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It is not true that iPhones would cost thousands of dollars if the workers were paid well. Come on. At least make your apologia for hyper exploiting the third world sound plausible. That's some sub-Thomas Friedman shit.

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According to EPI, it costs $15 to manufacture an iPhone. Let's say a third of that is labor costs, which I think is generous. Line workers at Foxcon make about $2/hour. You could raise that to $50/hour and Apple would still be making $150 of profit per phone. Even if Apple raised prices to maintain it's current rate of profit (even though that's not how supply and demand works), you still wouldn't be paying thousands of dollars for a smartphone.

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