Introducing the Hanke-Henry Permanent Calendar

Submitted by: daegog 3 weeks ago in Misc

Above: Pope Gregory XIII chaired the commission to adopt our current calendar in 1582. Is it time to move on to something better?

Introducing the Hanke-Henry Permanent Calendar


Submitted by Daegog
Write-up by Squrlz

UNTIL DAEGOG MADE a submission about it, I'd never heard of the Hanke-Henry Permanent Calendar, and I'm guessing it's new to most of you also. This weird but wonderful idea was first proposed in 2011 by two Johns Hopkins University professors, Richard Conn Henry and Steve Hanke, thus the name.

What is it? The Hanke-Henry Permanent Calendar (or HHPC, as enthusiasts call it) is a proposed reform to the Gregorian calendar we use today. Unlike the Gregorian calendar, where the days are continually sliding around from one year to the next ("What day of the week will Christmas be this year?"), the HHPC fixes the days of the week to the dates. For example, Christmas always falls on a Monday, as does New Year's Day. Any given date -- say July 4 -- will always be the same day of the week (a Thursday, in this case), no matter what the year is.

To accomplish this, the HHPC makes every third month 31 days long and all other months 30 days long. Every fifth or sixth year, the month of December gets an additional week inserted at the end of it.

The advantages of the design are numerous. The calendar becomes, in effect, permanent; every quarter would have the exact same number of days (excluding leap years), leading to easier and more accurate financial calculations; and events that need to be scheduled on the weekend or on any particular day of the week can be scheduled for the same date year after year.

It's a sensible approach that makes our current Gregorian calendar seem like the pounds, shillings, and pence of old English currency, something Thomas Jefferson found so inefficient and distasteful that he devised the decimal currency used in the U.S. today. The authors have claimed that if adopted worldwide, the HHPC approach would save enormous sums due to increased efficiency.

It's been eight years since the idea was proposed and, obviously, we aren't off the Gregorian calendar yet. As sensible as it is, will the HHPC ever manage to overcome our entrenched method of defining the years? It's hard to say; inertia and custom are powerful things, as the failure of the Dvorak keyboard attests.

Still, one can hope.

Links for more information follow.
"Changing Times" (paper first proposing the calendar on the Cato Institute website)
"Professors’ Proposed Calendar Synchronizes Dates With Days" (CNN)
"Hanke–Henry Permanent Calendar" (Wikipedia)
There are 20 comments:
Male 2,850
Great idea!   Not!  If your birthday is on a good day like Friday or Saturday you get more presents 'cause your party is well attended.  Monday or Tuesday??  Yeah good luck there.  

Also, how would this new system effect Santa's ability to pull of Christmas?  
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Male 10,232
Never had a problem with holidays falling on different days of the week. A non-issue.
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Male 1,540
Unfortunately God told Pope the truth of how days of the week go. Switching to this heretic calendar would result in too many unnecessary deaths, I'm afraid. 
Exodus 31:15 "For six days work is to be done, but the seventh day is a day of sabbath rest, holy to the LORD. Whoever does any work on the Sabbath day is to be put to death." 
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Male 6
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Male 10,070
philllpottt HOLY HECK! That's really good content. Can you submit it as a post? I'd like to give you credit for it.

Just click the Submit Post button, paste in the URL into the main textbox and put in a Title and Subtitle. Then click the Add Article button at the bottom of the page (don't hit the Submit Post button again at this point: it will erase your work).

Thanks!
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Male 6
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Male 10,070
philllpottt Thank you so much. Since you're about to appear on The Latest page, consider uploading an avatar for your account. Just an idea -- if you can't get to it, or you'd prefer to wait, no worries.

Thanks again for the submission!
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Female 6,818
Not a fan.  My birthday would always fall on a Sunday and Halloween has to change to the 30th a monday, or the 1st, a tuesday.  fook dat :D
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Male 10,070
melcervini But Sunday's child is "full of grace"!
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Female 6,818
squrlz4ever I'm a Thursday child, so I guess my 'far to go' is the next Sunday :D
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Male 287
when i read the title i swear i read the hanky panky permanent calendar 
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Male 10,070
tinfoilhatsociety LOL! That's the sound of opportunity calling. You should make a TV infomercial and start selling Hanky-Panky Permanent Calendars. I don't even know what one is, but I want one. Shut up and take my money!
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Male 2,015
much ado about nothing
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Male 10,070
punko So that's a thumbs-down, I take it?
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Male 2,015
squrlz4ever "billions in savings?"  Bullshit. Its like the no-minds that wanted to use 13 months as well.
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Male 10,070
punko Oh, come on now. Think of all those "Fireman's Carnival" banners towns hang up, where they keep having to change the dates depending on when the last weekend in June is. That's gotta save at least $2 billion right there.  O.O
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Male 2,015
squrlz4ever And what about the entire calendar industry?  Think of all the bare chested cowboy calendars that my wife won't hang up on the 'fridge.  You're killing an entire industry !
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Male 10,070
punko I actually do like this idea. The idea that, say, August 15 is a different day depending on the year is kind of clunky, when you think about it.

I do have two reservations about the HHPC. First, that extra week at the end of December every five or six years is a little odd. The professors are proposing that the days be called "Extra 1," "Extra 2," "Extra 3," et cetera. That's just dopey. That would be a nightmare for software text fields, for one thing. Better to number the days 32 through 38. They may have chosen the "Extra" designation out of fear that people would laugh at the idea of a December 38th.

Second, having been one of the programmers who had to deal with the ramifications of Y2K, the amount of software modification this new calendar system would require would be extensive and expensive. The changes would be far more complex than the Y2K fix.
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Male 295
Oo, and start at either the dawn of man, or the dawn of civilization. I want to be in the year 200,000 or 20,000, respectively. (Although those dates are still subject to change)
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Male 46,093
Let's go with the Hebrew Calendar.... Jews have got LOTS of work holidays!!!
Ya know what they do on jewish holidays? ...... The EAT.... alot!
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