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Comment: Re:Innate Value (Score 1) 250

by khallow (#49608485) Attached to: Bitcoin Is Disrupting the Argentine Economy

Bitcoin miners are performing work, specifically, they are validating transactions. If they were doing something else instead the blockchain wouldn't be guaranteed to be valid and bitcoin could be counterfeited.

You aren't arguing what you think you're arguing. There's no reason that performing work means that the work can't be useful in its own right.

Comment: Re:Ah Free Market Capitalism (Score 1) 362

by khallow (#49607575) Attached to: Bernie Sanders, Presidential Candidate and H-1B Skeptic

The way I see Free Market Capitalism is this: When have you ever had a difficult problem that got better by leaving it the fsck alone?

I think this is the core question. The answer is that these problems happen all the time. For example, there's a large category of perceived problems which aren't actual problems. For example, your claim that power companies don't "add value" when in the next sentence you state exactly the value they provide - power that _everyone_ wants. Since they are actually adding considerable value, the difficult problem of the valueless power companies is easily adverted by not having existed in the first place.

Second, there are the very difficult problems that aren't your problems. I find letting people work their difficult problems out on their own is the best solution here. Among other things, it's an educational experience that allows people to solve other difficult problems they face over the course of their lives.

`Then there's the difficult problem that one makes works by messing with it. For example:

Socialists basically say: Hey, the world is _fsckin'_ complex and it takes real hard work to make things run smoothly, and then a Socialist will start blathering on about all the things you need to do to make a system work.

In other words, the Socialist takes their one tool in the box and whacks on the problem happily. Then when the problem results in more problems (such as your DMV example where the supposed "anti-gov't types" fail to behave according to script), there's more targets to whack on. The top-down strategy common to socialism results in all sorts of problems due to both the ignorance and venality of the policy makers as well as the crude nature of the tools.

There is a standard destructive spiral that socialism gets in. First, they create a public good. Then when the rest of the world behaves in a way as to overconsume the public good, the standard tragedy of the commons phenomenon, then a bureaucracy is set up to regulate the consumption of the public good and starts doing its own thing. Then the cycle repeats, this time with a sliver of the society trapped in this bit of waste. This is exactly a place where relatively free markets excel.

Finally, there is the continued contradiction of growing an ever more complex, opaque, powerful, and unaccountable government while saying "Sure, you have to keep an eye on things". No, you aren't keeping an eye on things. You are growing one of the largest problems of societies, known since we first had civilizations. You don't have to "keep an eye" on markets like you do on bureaucracies, whether government-based or otherwise, who have little stake in doing their job.

Comment: Re:Bernie Sanders (any real shot at winning?) (Score 1) 362

by khallow (#49605201) Attached to: Bernie Sanders, Presidential Candidate and H-1B Skeptic

He calls himself a socialist, but most self-avowed socialist wouldn't consider him one because he doesn't favor compulsory worker ownership, production for use, or any of the usual socialist agenda.

Don't confuse private opinion with public stance. Most of those self-avowed socialists don't hold an elected position in a moderately conservative electorate.

Comment: Re:We should be studying this now (Score 1) 104

by khallow (#49602785) Attached to: Climatologist Speaks On the Effects of Geoengineering
An obvious one is small scale experiments on oceanic plants, possibly engineered, that could sequester carbon dioxide. For example, the ideal plant would be a carbon-fixing plant that has relatively small iron and phosphorus needs and sinks once it dies. You could drop a lot of carbon into the bottom of the ocean fast with a plant like that. And if it's a huge monoculture, then eventually something will figure out how to eat it.

+ - How Silicon Valley got that way -- and why it will continue to rule.->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes: Lots of places want to be "the next Silicon Valley." But the Valley's top historian looks back (even talks to Steve Jobs about his respect for the past!) to explain why SV is unique. While there are threats to continued dominance, she thinks its just too hard for another region to challenge SV's supremacy.
Link to Original Source

Comment: Re:No, it won't (Score 1) 104

by khallow (#49596509) Attached to: Climatologist Speaks On the Effects of Geoengineering
The problem here is that there are obvious problems with monkeying around with the world's energy infrastructure. So this is a standard engineering approach to see if we can preserve that energy infrastructure without incurring huge risks. Right now, it does appear that doing nothing is a better choice than 80% reduction in CO2 emissions.

Comment: Re:Geo-engineering is intrinsically riskier (Score 3, Insightful) 104

by khallow (#49596089) Attached to: Climatologist Speaks On the Effects of Geoengineering

At least with carbon reduction we're attempting to reverse climate changes through a mechanism believed to trigger those changes. However, with new intervention mechanisms that aren't fully understood, I don't trust anybody's model of what they think will happen.

I'll buy that. But I think it's worth noting here that all of our choices are geoengineering choices, including emission reduction and doing nothing. I find it a dubious argument to heavily favor one approach and then rule out a whole category of other strategies on the basis that we don't know enough to implement them. That should be a warning that we don't know enough to implement any of them.

Also there's some low-lying geoengineering fruit such as albedo changes in urban environments in hot locations which is a considerable part of the world, reforestation, and putting out large coal bed fires.

Comment: Re:He also wants to roll back civil rights too. (Score 1) 434

by roman_mir (#49593687) Attached to: Rand Paul Moves To Block New "Net Neutrality" Rules

Because Rockefeller colluded with railroad companies and had secret arrangements to get bulk discount for himself and shafted his competitors.

- there is absolutely 0 wrong with providing a company with a promise to buy scheduled services on the clock without interruptions and to pay for the service whether or not you can use 100% of its capacity that day.

If I want to start a shipping business I can talk to an import/export broker and work out a schedule, where regardless of my circumstances I will ship 1 container every 2 days with him on a clock and because of that certainty of payment he will give me a much better price than he could anybody else.

As to Rockefeller's 'secret deal to prevent shipping for others' - baloney. The so called 'secret deal' was no such thing, it was a discount that Rockefeller was getting that nobody else could get because they would not ship a supply of that much oil on the clock, whether they have it or not that time and pay for a prearranged amount of delivery as promised.

Rockefeller was absolutely right and the reason that oil never went below 7 cents was exactly because government destroyed his company and did not allow him to find new ways to increase demand by lowering prices even further. Nobody was finding any better way of doing business in that time, otherwise they would have won against Rockefeller and that is all there is to it.

Microsoft had a temporary monopoly for a very good reason: they provided the computing platform that nobody else could provide at the price and just because you can't accept that doesn't change that fact. Microsoft and others also pushed hard enough in the market that competitors actually had to innovate to become competitive in that market, which is how free and open source software came to existence.

As to me being 'religious' about free market - I cannot stand hypocrisy of the modern society that will vilify the individual and promote the collective and use the force of the collective to oppress the individual. If I am 'religious' about anything that would be the belief that individual freedom tramps every so called 'societal good' that you can come up with that is based on lies, oppression, destruction of the individual, theft from the individual, slavery of the individual by the collective.

In case of injury notify your superior immediately. He'll kiss it and make it better.