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Comment: Re:Did they pull the trigger? (Score 5, Insightful) 236

by Aris Katsaris (#43320029) Attached to: DOJ, MIT, JSTOR Seek Anonymity In Swartz Case

Really? No wrong committed? The same people who threatened with 35 years something that alternately could be convicted with only 6 months, if only he assuaded their pride by proclaiming himself guilty?

They threatened a man with 70 times the supposedly appropriate punishment -- he'd have to go to jail WITHOUT a trial, if he didn't want that threat against him.

So either they were willing to help a man escape 34.5 years of a just punishment, or they were willing to penalize a man with an additional 34.5 years that he didn't deserve. Which one is it?

FUCK your plea-bargaining system, and anyone who defends it. You put to jail people who never had a trial, by merely SCARING them with a hundredfold vengeance if they dare proclaim their innocence. Anyone who doesn't DEMAND that your horrid and villainous plea-bargain system changes is complicit to such crimes.

Comment: Re:Translation: (Score 4, Insightful) 236

by Aris Katsaris (#43319959) Attached to: DOJ, MIT, JSTOR Seek Anonymity In Swartz Case

Which person did he ever harm? No one.

That what he did is called "felonies" is much more of an indictment against the system that prosecuted him than against him.

And that you feel entitled to call him a scumbag, despite the fact he harmed nobody, just because of that same "felonies" tag, is an indictment against you.

Comment: Re:Where were they? (Score 1) 291

by Aris Katsaris (#40604991) Attached to: Why Were So Many "Crazy" Higgs Boson Stories Published?

What you're saying is also nonsense. Many aspects of many religions overlap with science, and are thus disproven by it.

For example: Through science we know that the Sun isn't a god riding a chariot drawn under the sea every night. Through science we know that the constellation of Orion isn't a hunter that fell in love with Artemis. Through science we know that humankind does not descend from a single human pair that lived in Mesopotamia around 4000 BC. Through science we know that the sea isn't the blood of a giant, nor was there a global flood that lasted 40 days sometime in the 3rd millenium BC.

Those are aspects of religions that did very much overlap with science, and have been disproven by it.

Comment: Re:Is it me or is he sounding more desperate? (Score 1) 733

by Aris Katsaris (#31912324) Attached to: Roger Ebert On Why Video Games Can Never Be Art

"I don't consider fear much of an evocation. I can do that but jumping out at someone from behind, but I wouldn't call that act performance art. :)"

By jumping out at someone you scare them for real, on a physical level. But don't you think it requires some amount of artistry for someone to scare you merely by depicting happenings on fictional characters in a computer screen?

Other than that, I think my main disagreement with you is that you seem to limit your definition of art to good art or deep art.

For me however even someone whistling to himself is performing art - as he's satisfying an aesthetic sense which isn't related to purely physical gratification.

Comment: Re:Is it me or is he sounding more desperate? (Score 2, Insightful) 733

by Aris Katsaris (#31907774) Attached to: Roger Ebert On Why Video Games Can Never Be Art

You say it's "chilling", and at the same time you claim it evokes no emotion?

If it's chilling at times, then it evokes more emotions than most the novels I've read or movies I've seen -- and yet nobody would argue that a novelist or moviewriter isn't doing art.

The whole argument about "videogames aren't be art" is merely an old elite claiming that *any* new and popular form of art isn't art. Theater wasn't true art for the first ancient Greeks, and movies weren't true art in the early 20th century, and some people argue nowadays that videogames and comics aren't true art.

Here's a bet: I'm guessing that most of the people objecting to videogames being called art also objects to comics being called art.

All they mean by it is "it's relatively new, and popular enough that there's lot of shitty samples of such as well, so I don't like using the same word to describe it as the pieces of art that have survived centuries and millenia"

Comment: Re:Is it me or is he sounding more desperate? (Score 2, Insightful) 733

by Aris Katsaris (#31907734) Attached to: Roger Ebert On Why Video Games Can Never Be Art

Your problem is that you think that "art" automatically means "good art" or "deep art". You think that calling something art automatically makes it a compliment. No. There can exist shallow art, and there can exist bad art.

"Some films aren't art. Some music isn't art. Some books aren't art. Some plays aren't art. "

Sure, those few books and films that are designed without any thought whatsoever given to artistic criteria, aren't art.

But all music and all plays are art - I can't think of any example of such that's not designed with artistic criteria. Music indeed is probably the purest form of art there can be, and I doubt any example of it (even humming to oneself) can be considered non-art.

"Do you also believe that a pinball machine is art "

Yes. It's not *primarily* art (it's primarily a exercise for reflexes instead) and it's an extremely shallow kind of art (bright colors! loud sounds!), but to that limited extent it's still art.

"Heck, just as you claim that video games are art, some people also defend that football is art."

I don't see the rules of the game having been designed with artistic criteria in mind, so I'd disagree with that assessment.

Mascots and cheerleaders do perform art, however (comedy, dancing, etc).

Comment: Re:a better question (Score 1) 706

by Aris Katsaris (#31803430) Attached to: Should Kids Be Bribed To Do Well In School?

"Just in case you did not notice, most slaves were not sent to school during the day, but to work. School benefits the child, not the parent."

Nobody is disputing that the motivation for the schooling system is different to slavery, and that so are its end results.

(Though the argument that school doesn't benefit the parent is weak - school provides a free babysitter, after all.)

But the model itself of mandatory unpaid labour is similar to slavery. It's similar to many other models as well of course -- e.g. my one-year mandatory service in the Greek army. Would you prefer a comparison to mandatory conscription instead of to slavery?

I think most Greek kids tend to group them together after all, they know they have to finish high school, then they have to finish the army, two mandatory steps, with university being an optional step either following or sandwiched in between.

Comment: Re:a better question (Score 0) 706

by Aris Katsaris (#31802532) Attached to: Should Kids Be Bribed To Do Well In School?

Because people have a choice which job to apply for, and they have a choice how to use the money. If they're not paid sufficiently, they can also choose to quit.

(If none of these choices is practical, employment does of course transform to nothing more than wage-slavery)

Schoolkids don't get to have any of these choices. Because they're not paid, because someone else decides their education for them, because they can't decide to quit.

Comment: Re:a better question (Score 1) 706

by Aris Katsaris (#31802204) Attached to: Should Kids Be Bribed To Do Well In School?

"my problem is with paying EXTRA to motivate children to receive it. "
We constantly pay money to people to motivate them to work. And studying IS work - it often is very hard work and very time-consuming work.

"the free availability should be motivation enough. it was for me"
It's not free, for getting a good education you must have paid in time and effort.

By your argument soldiers shouldn't get paid either, since love of country is motivation enough for some people. Or judges and lawyers, since love of justice is motivation enough for some people. You can always find *some* people willing to do volunteer work. That doesn't mean you will necessarily get the best results.

Comment: Re:a better question (Score 1, Insightful) 706

by Aris Katsaris (#31802058) Attached to: Should Kids Be Bribed To Do Well In School?

"someone else provides the children with food and a home. those providers have expectations of the children. no further motivation should be expected, let alone required."

You've just described slavery. The master provides food and a home to his slaves, and that provider has expectation of the slaves. No further motivation should be expected, let alone required.

Society has moved away from the slavery-model for our financial system. Perhaps we should move away from the slavery-model for our educational system as well.

Comment: Re:uuuh (Score 1) 327

by Aris Katsaris (#30264528) Attached to: Man Pleads Guilty To Selling Fake Chips To US Navy

How many black men or women actually stand for election as senators?

Which kinda indicates the underlying problem...

There were no non-white or female presidential candidates in either of the two major parties all the way up to 2004. Does that tell you *nothing* about racism or sexism in society in centuries past?

Or are you gonna say that since they didn't stand for election, it doesn't mean anything that they weren't elected either?

Employers can only employ the people who apply for jobs that they are qualified to do.

Of course. And people can only become "qualified" by getting educated. And the rich have a significant advantage in securing education for their children. And the rich are predominantly white.

Therefore in this self-reinforcing establishment black and Hispanic minorities will remain underqualified.

Another problem is that unqualified people will often get a job because they're a minority...

That's actually the least of the problem. Why don't you go a few steps further back and figure out *why* some minorities have fewer qualifications in the first place.

The first Rotarian was the first man to call John the Baptist "Jack." -- H.L. Mencken

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