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Comment Meals should reduce stress, not add to it (Score 1) 256

Dr Malcolm Kendrick (see all his books) has a theory that the leisurely and cultured French attitude to meals may help to account for the "French paradox" - that they eat lots of meat and fats*, washed down with wine**, but have very low rates of heart and circulatory disease. What if the root cause isn't anything to do with WHAT you eat - but with HOW you eat it? Imagine a typical Western person's lunch - perhaps a sandwich or other snack, probably crammed down at a desk while trying to go on working under pressure. Now contrast that with a traditional French lunch: two or three courses, in a proper restaurant - if possible, out of doors and in pleasant surroundings - taking at least 45 minutes and perhaps as much as 90 minutes. Accompanied by a sensible amount of alcoholic drink - maybe an aperitif and a glass or two of wine - and interesting, relaxing conversation. After forty or fifty years, which is more likely to lead to a heart attack?

* Yes, I know that eating plenty of healthy meat and natural animal fat is actually good for you. But the people who labelled it a paradox didn't.
** Likewise a reasonable amount of alcohol, especially wine.

Comment Re:/facepalm (Score 5, Insightful) 142


"More than 4 billion people don't have a voice online."

Translation: "More than 4 billion people are currently ineligible to give me their personal data, so I can sell it and become even more immensely rich". (Why???) "I would like governments (or anyone) to pay for those people to be connected to the Internet, so that I can start making money out of them".

After all, that's what governments are for - making the immensely rich even immensely richer. Isn't it?

Comment Re:Why does the FBI continue to engage in witchcra (Score 1) 262

Oh, and this:


Not exactly a case of falsifying physical evidence, but very analogous. The FBI placed four law-abiding US citizens (who happened to be Muslim) on the "No Fly List", preventing them from travelling outside the USA to visit family and friends, and making it seriously inconvenient to travel inside the USA. This action was taken in 2010, after all four men had refused repeated requests by the FBI to act as spies or provocateurs against fellow Muslims. This year, after five years of being banned from flying, the FBI took them off the list shortly before the lawsuit they had brought was due to be heard. The court then ruled that the FBI agents had done nothing illegal.

Comment Re:Why does the FBI continue to engage in witchcra (Score 2) 262

The FBI has an awful lot of previous form when it comes to pretending to have scientific evidence that doesn't really exist.


etc., etc. ad nauseam.

Comment Re: Why does the FBI continue to engage in witchcr (Score 2) 262

'"Commander Turner, would you show Mr Ramsey the gadget your boys found?"
The lieutenant-commander pushed a black cylinder about the size of a lead pencil down the table... With an ostentatious gesture, Ramsey put his black box on the table. He placed the cylinder beside it, managing to convey the impression that he had plumbed the mysteries of the device and found them, somehow, inferior.
"What the devil is that thing?" he wondered.
"You've probably recognized that as a tight-beam broadcaster", said Belland.
Ramsey glanced at the featureless surface of the black cylinder. "What would those people do if I claimed X-ray vision?" he asked himself. "Obe must have hypnotized them"'.
Frank Herbert, "The Dragon in the Sea" (aka "Under Pressure"), published 1956

Comment Re:Gofundme (Score 1) 657

It's quite impressive that, nearly 170 years ago, there were people who saw exactly where the nanny state would lead.

"When under the pretext of fraternity, the legal code imposes mutual sacrifices on the citizens, human nature is not thereby abrogated. Everyone will then direct his efforts toward contributing little to, and taking much from, the common fund of sacrifices. Now, is it the most unfortunate who gains from this struggle? Certainly not, but rather the most influential and calculating".
- Frédéric Bastiat (“Justice and fraternity”, in Journal des Économistes, 15 June 1848, page 324)

Comment Re:Gofundme (Score 1) 657

"I think it's a good idea that everyone should pay some form of tax (even the most meager of incomes should still incur some non-zero tax) simply because it makes everyone have a little skin in the game and therefor more likely to participate in government, but there are people who pay far less into the system than they receive".

This sounds as if you think government is a benefit. But just because you are forced to pay for something, it doesn't follow that you'll gain from it.

"Be happy you don't get all the government you're paying for".
- Will Rogers

Comment Re:Not far enough. (Score 1) 78

"Sanction them. Exclude them from the world market".

Assuming much? We have already seen how sanctions on Russia have stimulated its economy while seriously damaging Europe's. I seriously wonder which of those (or both) the US government finds more rewarding.

The important question, however, is why the US government thinks that it can "exclude" other countries "from the world market". Given that the USA has less than 5 percent of the world's population, and has been spectacularly successful in lining up dozens of other nations against its policies - including several of the world's largest. They started by placing sanctions on Russia (see the link below). Now they want to sanction China. Maybe India and Brazil might follow - four out of the five BRICS nations. But at some point, when less than 5 percent of the world's population starts sanctioning and excluding others, one wonders just who is excluding and who is being excluded. Or maybe someone is contriving to exclude themselves?


It is not every question that deserves an answer. -- Publilius Syrus