Are time zones obsolete?

Planet Money
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Automatic TRANSCRIPT

Here's something that I learned recently in the air above us up at thirty five thousand feet. It is the same time everywhere, universal time, which is time at the Greenwich Meridian is used all around the planet earth, today by every single airline and air force in the world. This is dick Henry. He's an astrophysicist at Johns Hopkins University, and he said think about it. They're all these planes, flying all over the earth at hundreds of miles an hour, and you don't wanna get confused by time zones. When you're trying to keep them from crashing into each other dick has talked to his friend, Steve Hanky about this for years, seems an economist, a professor of applied economics at Johns Hopkins, and he says it is not just pilots who need universal time investors needed to you can trade. Twenty four hours, a day almost around the clock and gold currencies. Stocks and everything else under the sun. And those are all timestamped using universal time Hanky and Henry were telling me about all this because they have this little proposal. Yes, even I want to abolish the time zones. No more time zones. We want twenty four hour world time everybody on the same clock. You're, you're, you're fully serious about this. Like, is this a serious proposal? Oh my, of course, it's a serious proposal, if it's ten o'clock in New York, it is ten o'clock in Shanghai and Sydney and Nairobi it is ten o'clock everywhere. Hanky and Henry have also designed a whole new efficient. Standardized calendar the Hanky Henry permanent calendar whose Hanky Henry time and calendar. It's raked up with an extra week every five or six years, so that the calendar is. Standard year to year like January I is always a Monday. They say come on, we waste so much time. Readjusting calendar's year to year. It's unnecessary. What would happen if the Hanky Henry colander were adopted? Oh my goodness. There'd be a couple of years of bumps and grinds people read adjusted their schedules. But then we'd have at an absolute optimum, and it would never ever change for the rest of human history. This is very hard for me to imagine two guys changing the way time works for everybody forever.

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