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Comment: Re:Redistribution (Score 2) 358

by Geoffrey.landis (#48278175) Attached to: Statisticians Study Who Was Helped Most By Obamacare

...The fact that many of the (very optimistically estimated) number of those who were added to O-Care rolls did not want or feel they needed it should be considered as well.

I personally know several people who were able to get insurance under Obamacare but didn't have it before. Not one says that they "did not want or feel they needed" insurance. What they say is, "Thank God, this is saving my life."

However, even if what you said was true: what you are implying is that there is a body of people who previously were saying "I don't want or need insurance, because if I get sick I'll go to a hospital that is legally is not allowed to turn me away, and the taxpayers will pay for it," -and they are now paying for their own health care. That's a win for the taxpayers.

In other cases, such as ones I am very familiar with, previously covered spouses were forced to move to their own plan if their work provider had coverage available. This means that although a new health care subscriber can now be counted, that person was already covered

That's not the way the number of uninsured is counted. That would count as a wash: neither an addition nor a reduction to the number of uninsured.

... More often than not, it is the large urban populations that shift state's support bias to liberal, and it is those same urban areas that hold the most desperate and dependent populations of the truly underprivileged.

Sorry, the belief that poverty is an urban phenomenon is another myth. It's a myth that's pervasive among liberals and conservatives, but simply not true. There are actually more poor and underprivileged people in rural America. You're right about urban areas being liberal and rural conservative, but wrong about being able to attribute that to "dependent populations of truly underprivileged": the greatest use of food stamps, as a percentage of population, in poor rural areas, not urban areas.

.... Its not that hard to play with numbers to make any point you want.

But you don't have to do that, because it's even easier to simply say "Those numbers don't support my political bias, so they are wrong."

Comment: misleading (Score 1) 358

by Geoffrey.landis (#48277949) Attached to: Statisticians Study Who Was Helped Most By Obamacare

The final sentence of the summary is misleading.

Many of the poorest and most rural states in the country tend to favor Republican politicians.

The link is to a 2011 article, which states the following:

Most of the 10 poorest states in the country are Republican. Mississippi is the poorest... followed by Arkansas, Tennessee, West Virginia, Louisiana, Montana, South Carolina, Kentucky, Alabama and North Carolina.

The economics of a state is more impacted by what party holds the governorship and statehouse, not by what party they voted for for president. Looking at the governorship of each of those states
you see that the parties of the governors of the states listed are, respectively, Republican, Democratic, Republican, Democratic, Republican, Democratic, Republican, Democratic, Republican, Republican.

Comment: Re:what a showboat (Score 1) 150

by RockDoctor (#48276581) Attached to: Stan Lee Media and Disney Battle For Ownership of Marvel Characters

And if after your death your family finds old artwork of characters Disney can have the place raided and all artwork drawn during his original employment confiscated.

If those were the terms of the contract of employment, then yes. Are you saying that humans 40 or 50 years ago were so stupid that they couldn't read the contracts written by humans of the same era. Before they signed them.

Comment: Re:Breaking the stranglehold of other countries (Score 1, Flamebait) 206

by TapeCutter (#48276285) Attached to: Denmark Plans To Be Coal-Free In 10 Years

"Renewable" energy requires natural gas in order to compensate for fluctuating output.

"Base load" is a marketing term for coal, there is no generation technology that matches output to the demand curve of a modern city, they all need to be balanced via gas turbines and pumping water uphill purely for economic efficiency, there's nothing to stop a nation over provisioning with generators of any kind to eliminate the need for fast switching gas turbines if the politics demands that kind of self punishment.

Comment: Re:LBGT marketing? (Score 1) 676

by radtea (#48275853) Attached to: Tim Cook: "I'm Proud To Be Gay"

I guess I shouldn't be surprised by all the non-sequitur hate this comment is getting from anonymous cowards. I don't generally reply to comments, but the ones here are so hateful and stupid it seems worth putting a word in.

No one asked anyone to do gay porn, for the illiterate amongst you. No one was asked to make out with anyone. You're going to have to address what I wrote rather than your fevered imaginations to get any traction, I'm afraid.

We frequently do films that cast actors as psychopaths, murderers, clowns, and worse, and no one ever objects, so any suggestion that playing a gay person is exceptionally offensive against the morals of the actor requires that it be more morally repugnant for them to play a gay person than a murderer. That is... odd.

Seriously, in one film there were half a dozen murders on screen. No one objected. Yet someone objected when given the option to play a gay person. If you don't see a problem with that, you're kind of screwed up.

Comment: Re:This was no AP. (Score 1) 339

by RockDoctor (#48275767) Attached to: LAX To London Flight Delayed Over "Al-Quida" Wi-Fi Name

It isn't even that. The ineptitude of those looking for the AP is astounding. You stop the plane. You open up your wifi analyzer app and walk down the isle. Then you check all the devices in those few rows (4 tops) , and boot the asshole playing the joke. 1/2 hour tops.

Why on earth would you make 200 people sit on the tarmac for even half an hour?

Indeed. You alter the set-up of the several WiFi repeaters on the route from the plane to the customs post (you may need to have the plane go on a short magical mystery tour of the outer reaches of the field while doing this) so that they listen for WiFi hotspot's names. At the same time, you use the existing CCTV coverage to notice which passengers are passing each WiFi repeater when the rogue name appears. You may wish to fiddle with (programmable) signs to stir the passengers around a little. Direct them to different belts, or put up "HOLD - re-assigning baggage belt" type messages ; to generate turbulence in the pipeline of passengers. When you've idenitified the person carrying the offending item, you flag them for excessive duty-free as they're going through the customs post and ... in the back room, the rubber gloves come out, then plunge out of the light of day.

Comment: Re:tempest in a teapot (Score 1) 219

by RockDoctor (#48275657) Attached to: Car Thieves and Insurers Vote On Keyless Car Security

This article sounds like insurance companies just trying to get out of paying claims,

Nope, primarily this is the insurance companies turning business away (or handing it to their "specialist" subdivisions, at much higher rates).

There are always cases of insurance claims being refused. But since the rate of fraudulent claims in general is in the region of 5 to 10% (and higher in vehicle insurance), you'll also expect that some of your genuine claims are going to be rejected as fraudulent. and some fraudulent claims are going to be accepted as genuine.

Personally, out of 6 encounters with the payout side of the insurance industry, I've had the loss adjusters round once (i.e., they suspected this claim), and when I produced receipts for around 60% of the material I claimed taken in a burglary, over several years ... claim paid in full. Which was fair, because I wasn't inflating the claim.

Comment: Re:Abrupt, but like 100 years abrupt? (Score 3, Interesting) 94

by radtea (#48275617) Attached to: New Study Shows Three Abrupt Pulses of CO2 During Last Deglaciation

We do not know exactly how high the cost will be, but we do know that it will be cheaper if we act now.

Absolutely. The difficulty is that "action" has to get past a fence of anti-science, anti-technology, anti-capitalist nutjobs who say on the one hand that a) we face a civilization-ending event and b) we must not use various well-known and ready-to-go solutions to the problem, but instead must embark on an unproven revolutionary program that "changes everything!"

Nuclear power, carbon taxes, and research in to carbon sequestration are the obvious immediate responses to climate change.

The first two are practical, proven and ready-to-go. The latter is a backup plan.

Instead we have left-wing idiots protesting oil pipelines, because that's where the donation dollars come from.

With regard to carbon taxes: we have to tax something to fund government. Even righties who just want to use government money to bomb brown people generally agree with that. We can tax income, or we can tax carbon emissions. Who but a raving anti-wealth socialist would want to tax something good and wonderful like income when we can tax some basically nasty like carbon emissions instead?

Comment: Re:Liability (Score 1) 219

by RockDoctor (#48275605) Attached to: Car Thieves and Insurers Vote On Keyless Car Security

A car you cannot insure for us on the public road is unlikely to be deemed by the courts to be of 'fit for purpose', so the sale of such a car in the future is likely to be void.


We don't do retrospective legislation very often in the UK. Which is why the insurance companies are making a public fuss about this, so that future purchasers can't claim "we didn't know about this problem", and the manufacturers do have a reasonable time to fix the problem before the insurers really crack down.

Like I said up-thread, I reckon about 6 months. Then the premiums will go up to around the vehicle's value. There will remain "specialist" insurers who'll do the job for 40%, and will love creaming the profit, while the big insurers will have got a substantial risk off their books.

Comment: Re:Modified car? (Score 1) 219

by RockDoctor (#48275503) Attached to: Car Thieves and Insurers Vote On Keyless Car Security

Wonder if you can claim for the insurance that the port is disabled.

Hmmm. Interesting. More interesting than many comments so far.

(Submitter here.)

You could make that claim.

Whether the insurance company chose to believe you is one question that is absolutely and entirely at their discretion (note that in the original description that they were refusing new business, or in some cases annual renewal of the insurance ; they are under no obligation to accept new business, and if you have existing insurance with them which they choose to discontinue, they're only obliged to return premiums paid in advance and to give you a reasonable time - several days to a week or so - to arrange new insurance if they cancel an existing policy).

They might, if they wanted the administrative hassle, send out a vehicle inspector to assess your vehicle's modifications, and then insure the vehicle under "showman's vehicle" terms. Needless to say, you pay for the inspector's report, every year. Or, if you had the system removed/ disabled by a dealer, then they'd want the garage's and manufacturer's certification of the modifications - just as if you'd lowered the suspension and changed the 1.5L engine for a 12L F1 race engine.

Or ... you could tell them you'd made the changes without having actually made the changes. That's when it gets really interesting. Attempting to obtain a service by fraudulent misrepresentation is a criminal offence. It also invalidates your insurance. So, if your vehicle is stolen, and your lies (in writing, above your signature, dated) are found out, then you're liable to unlimited fines, a criminal record (e.g. many countries will now refuse you a visa, for the rest of your life), jail time. AND, because you were driving around with fraudulently-obtained insurance, you were driving with NO insurance. Which almost always means that you'll lose your driving license for several years.

The action that the insurance companies are taking is designed to make people either remove the keyless systems, or to take the vehicles off the road. They clearly don't want to have the business. They're doing this for their convenience, not for the convenience of their customers.

The next step - which I'd expect in about 6 months - will be to raise the cost of insurance above the cost of the vehicle. Which is a very clear way of saying "we don't want this business - it's too troublesome".

Comment: Re:To stop the spread of communism... (Score 1) 262

by ceoyoyo (#48275455) Attached to: Ebola Forecast: Scientists Release Updated Projections and Tracking Maps

"it might take some coordination among the various agencies."

Various other companies also charter cargo planes if it's mostly supplies that need to be delivered. Or smaller planes could be chartered from various other airports, such as in southern Europe or Morocco. The argument that regular passenger service needs to be maintained so that professional medical help can get into and rotate out of the affected countries doesn't really seem to hold water.

"Consequences, Schmonsequences, as long as I'm rich." -- "Ali Baba Bunny" [1957, Chuck Jones]