As previously mentioned, I love stories of real-world frauds, or, even better, ambiguous stories where it’s unclear what’s real and what’s not. Here are two more additions to my favourites that I want to present to you in this episode of No Value Added.
1) Maxine Swann on a neutrino physicist’s bizarre South American adventure. A piece of reporting that somehow manages to use the unreliable narrator! I haven’t decided if this or the SMBC cartoon are the best thing ever on the subject of secret physicist fantasies, but it’s definitely true that one of them is.
2) Josh Levin on the Welfare Queen. The writing here is not that inspiring to me, but the subject, an unbelievable, and seemingly unbelievably evil, woman who manipulates everyone around her, must be encountered. Reading this is sobering in a sense, because she has ruined so many people’s lives – directly, and, if we believe the reporting, indirectly as well – and she didn’t really get that much out of it.