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Comment: Re:Especially solar cells and carbon fiber windmil (Score 1) 214

Well the consequences were global, true

Not entirely. Here in Australia it was a only a minor perturbance (we rode it out on the back of Chinese demand for coal and iron). But we hate feeling left out, so don't tell anyone here that it was worse elsewhere.

Comment: Re:So how many of them are actually qualified (Score 1) 214

I wonder how many of them drive a car, or ride in one, or a bus, etc. I wonder how they heat their homes.

Well of of them, but how is that in the least bit relevant to protecting your portfolio from the carbon bubble, not is it entirely pertinent to the question of solving AGW.

I don't own a large enough plot of land to ...

Just as well that it isn't down to you personally to cut 80% of global fossil fuel use, isn't it? Nor is it down to any other individual. Nor does the fact that someone drive a car reflect poorly on any individual who advocates for positive change. Silly argument, this isn't going to be solved by the little decisions individuals make, but by a major shift in energy generation.

Divestment is not entirely motivated by purely ethical concerns, but rather by the very real prospect that the fossil fuel intensive stocks are worth less than half what they currently are trading for and that this will become increasingly apparent. The issue here is that major energy companies are vastly overvalued because their assets are largely sunk: as much as 40-60% (estimated by HSBC) of their market capitalisation is in "unburnable carbon." Dump them while there are still folk out there fool enough to buy them is the ethic at play here.

Comment: Re:Wait... wha? (Score 2) 1482

by Capsaicin (#46637035) Attached to: OKCupid Warns Off Mozilla Firefox Users Over Gay Rights

Consider this: What makes the guy at OKCupid any different from Sen. Joe McCarthy?

The coercive power of the state for a start. And, of course, the fact pointed out by GP, that OKC is merely making a recommendation, which is, your purple wig example notwithstanding, is a "demand" more easily ignored than a summons from the House. I mean, get real dude!

That being said, to urge a boycott of a company (which has, in light of this controversy, publicly stated support for marriage equality) on the basis of a $1,000 donation made by a CEO appointed some 5 years after said donation (which donation was, in any case, a perfectly legitimate expression of that individual's personal convictions) seems unduly zealous to me. Especially when far more compelling reasons could be given for boycotting nearly each and every substitute product.

Of course if LGBT issues outrank one's other concerns, such zealotry is equally a perfectly legitimate expression of personal conviction. I however, as a truly caring and compassionate human being (and as a sociopath that requires some effort let me tell you!), shall continue to use Firefox.

Comment: Re:Common Examples (Score 3, Interesting) 285

by Capsaicin (#46581181) Attached to: I prefer my peppers ...

Thanks for that link! Habanero is about my limit, but I had no idea where it fell on the scale.

T'was not too long ago the the Red Savina Habanero fell at the very top of the heat scale (scoring a 10+) or ca. 250,000 SU, with the other Habaneros just behind. [Correction: I note the abovementioned table has the Red Savina at 350K+ (in contradistinction to the caption)]. This was dwarfed when the ghost chillies (your Bhut Jolokia and friends) arrived on the scene and again when your Trinidad Scorpion vars. emerged. I suggest searching 'Trinidad Scorpion pod test' on youtube for some light family viewing. :)

Comment: Re:Good! (Score 1) 279

by Capsaicin (#46503257) Attached to: The Billionaires Privatizing American Science

In my view having a choice in the matter of whether to aid your fellow man and deciding to do it is a more moral act than being compelled to at the point of a gun or a prison cell.

I agree completely. And I would only add that compelling people to act morally at the point of a gun, or via the threat of imprisonment, is more likely to extract the sought after aid than relying on their own sense of morality. ;)

Comment: Re: Makers and takers (Score 1) 676

by Capsaicin (#46460605) Attached to: 70% of U.S. Government Spending Is Writing Checks To Individuals

Oh, your position is that they are delusional rather than just whiny?

No. If anything is "delusional" [not my choice of word], it's the idea that workers in a pure capitalist economy can simply "find a new job that pays them what their time is worth." Further, that a preference can only be expressed between available options and that to characterise not choosing a non-existent option as a "revealed preference" is odd.

Comment: Re: Makers and takers (Score 1) 676

by Capsaicin (#46460323) Attached to: 70% of U.S. Government Spending Is Writing Checks To Individuals

If people think their time is worth more than their current salary, they should go find a new job that pays them what their time is worth. Most people don't, so we have a revealed preference

No one offered them that new job that pays them what their time is worth (obviously, since no one can afford to pay them what their time is worth). So no, not a revealed preference.

Comment: Re:Makers and takers (Score 1) 676

by Capsaicin (#46460145) Attached to: 70% of U.S. Government Spending Is Writing Checks To Individuals

In a free market people don't exchange something of lessor value for something of greater value.

Sure they do, specifically people sell their time for less than they think it is worth (and are often deeply unhappy about it) and necessarily for less than it is worth to their employer. Realistically there's not much choice as to whether we work or not and even if it's an exchange which is formally free. The situation is not symmetrical with our other decisions where our freedom to exchange (or not to) may be more real.

If I hire you do a job, I do so because I value the "work" less [more?] than my money....

Yes and when I hire people for a job (eg. the plumber yesterday) I do so on the same basis. However, this is because my income is not dependent on exploiting the difference in the cost of labour and its value.

If my income were dependent on hiring workers to generate value I could only afford to pay them more than the value they add to my business if my products could fetch a price above their value. However since people making consumption decisions are far freer than people selling their labour I will have to rely on paying my workforce less than the value they add. (Which is mellon's point).

As I keep reminding my teenage kid ... "now son, are you working hard enough? Remember if you are not making more for them than the $20/hr they are paying you, they are not going to be able to keep you on!"

Comment: Re:Makers and takers (Score 2) 676

by Capsaicin (#46459597) Attached to: 70% of U.S. Government Spending Is Writing Checks To Individuals

The idea is that you pay more than what the work is worth to the worker

Where, since one is compelled to work, what "the work is worth to the worker" is defined by what you pay them. Quite.

OP's point still stands, you must necessarily pay the worker less than the value the worker adds for you. I'm not sure, however, that the macroeconomic conclusion he draws from this observation is well founded.

Comment: Re:You would hope (Score 1) 482

by Capsaicin (#46403295) Attached to: Pro-Vaccination Efforts May Be Scaring Wary Parents From Shots

And if I'm not vaccinated because I can't be vaccinated?

Then, somewhat obviously, an exception must be made for you. The same is true for children with a family history of adverse reactions to certain vaccines.

Herd immunity is not overly compromised by the few exceptional cases where vaccines ought not be administered. It is compromised by the viral spread of "popular knowledge."

Comment: Re:You would hope (Score 3, Insightful) 482

by Capsaicin (#46403235) Attached to: Pro-Vaccination Efforts May Be Scaring Wary Parents From Shots

If you're vaccinated, it's not going to affect you.

In our valley a daughter of vaccination sceptics (i.e. she was un-vaccinated) contracted Whooping cough. She then passed the disease onto a vaccinated child at school.

Given that vaccines cannot confer immunity in 100% of cases, and given that people are not always in the state of health required for their "immunity" to fight off an infection, herd immunity remains a major factor the effectiveness of vaccination.

When you decide not to vaccinate your child, you are making health decisions (potentially life and death decisions) for other children as well.

Machines that have broken down will work perfectly when the repairman arrives.