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Comment Nothing to see here (Score 1) 276

Most scholars don't think that the Talpiot Tomb has anything to do with Jesus. For exampel, Géza Vermes says the arguments for the Talpiot tomb are not "just unconvincing but insignificant" (see the Wikipedia page). Also, Christian theology does not depend on whether or not the shroud of Turin is real.

I'm not muslim, but even the summary notes a perfectly reasonable explanation - the parchment could be an old one. And frankly, I'm skeptical that the carbon dating is that precise; carbon dating depends on a lot of assumptions that can easily be false in specific circumstances. (Yes, radioactivity decreases at a fixed rate... but you have to make BIG assumptions about its starting value.) So while this article makes for a good headline, the current actual evidence is rather worthless.

Comment I'd like to take a moment to express appreciation (Score 4, Interesting) 80

for the maintainers. The bootloader is a not particularly glamorous problem to work on, but it's critical to everyone and because it involves differing interpretations of standards by manufacturers and various OS developers it had to have been a headache.

Of course later projects had the luxury of a clean sheet, hindsight, and more hardware resources, but without a solid bootloader in the early says of Linux, history would have been very different.

Comment No, the Democrats shut it down. (Score 1) 119

Backing a republican is understandable...but risky in this day and age. This is a political party that has shut down the US Government twice.

No, the Democrats are the ones that "shut it down" - to the extent that a "government shutdown" actually shuts anything down - and the Replublicans caved both times and gave them what they wanted.

The "power of the purse" is SUPPOSED to be the House of Representatives' check on a runaway executive branch. When the executive does something Congress doesn't want it to do, Congress is supposed to cut off the money for that, to make the executive branch stop. (This is why military appropriations, in particular, have a constitutional limit of two years: If the President, as Commander in Chief decides to go to war without a declaration, congress can stop the war within a couple years by stopping the money for the military.) This is also supposed to work when the majority of either house of congress is opposed to something.

But in these recent "government shutdowns" the Democratic majority in the Senate, along with the President, held all the services of the government hostage when the Republicans tried to defund the no-longer-popular Obamacare. The Republican-controlled house split the funding for various sections of the government into several bills, and passed essentially all of them, with the idea that Obamacare would be in its own bill which could then be voted on separately - both likely failing to pass it in the House and giving a recorded vote showing which senators and reps supported it, to use in the next election's campaigns.

The Senate leadership and Democratic majority then refused to pass ANY of the fund-a-part-of-the-government bills, holding the popular parts of the government's operations hostage: Give up the House's prerogative to originate all funding bills, pass an omnibus bill including Obamacare, or the government will be shut down - and our pet media will blame YOU for it!

The Republicans tried several iterations, from an everything-but-Obamacare bill, through several sets that added up to funding everything but Obamacare, to a bunch of little fund-somethng-really-important bills, and the Democrats bounced pretty much all of them.

Eventually the old budget timed out. Then the President ordered his people, not to go on vacation for lack of money to pay them, but to do things like actively blockade federal parks and roads. And for days the Democrats and the media said that it was the Republicans who had "shut down the goverment" (when they'd passed bills to fund pretty much all of it).

Eventually the Republican leadership threw in the towel and let an Everything Including Obamacare bill through. But people like you are STILL fooled into thinking it was the Rs, not the Ds, that made it uncomfortable for them by "shutting it down".

(I'd be a lot more impressed, by the way, if cutting off the money actually DID shut down the government, rather than just 17% or so of it, leaving the remaing 83% running full-bore. It would be interesting to try actual anarchy for a change, just to see what would happen. ;-) )

Comment Seabirds and landfills (Score 2, Insightful) 125

The birds that figure out NOT to eat plastic (or how to get their body to deal with plastic after it's consumed) will survive to breed ...

Indeed.

There are clouds of seagulls constantly hanging out at the landfills in the San Francisco Bay Area, picking food out of the trash as it's dumped. Lots of plastic in the same load (even now that the plastic grocery bags are banned.) Why haven't THEY gone extinct yet?

Do the "environmentalists" think these gulls are better at distinguishing, or surviving ingestion of, plastic than the ones at sea? Or do we have to put roofs over our landfills to protect these endangered avian pests?

Somehow I'm not convinced this is a real problem.

Comment Re:This is why (Score 1) 196

I'm with Trump on this one.

When the government, or any other gang of crooks, steals your resources, and you get the opportunity to take some of them back, letting them keep it (and potentially use it to harm others), rather than taking the "tainted money", isn't "principled", it's "stupid".

I'm following the law as written. If you want to help me change the laws so:
  - I don't get the Social Security and
  - I don't get Medicare, but
  - I also don't have to pay income tax when I earn money in the free market or liquidate my 401(k)s (money earned honestly that hasn't been taxed yet) and
  - can buy medical care and insurance, for myself and my family, on an open market, from providers that aren't forced to give free care to all comers and gouge people like me to cover it.
I'd be ECSTATIC to work with you.

But if you just want to eliminate the first pair without enabling the second, you're just trying to loot me further and can take a hike.

Comment Or ... (Score 4, Insightful) 47

they could just give their environmental regulators the authority to enforce their existing environmental laws.

In the film Under the Dome, Chinese journalist Chai Jing astonishes a Chinese audience with a film clip from California where Cal DoT stops a truck and actually checks that it has all the mandatory safety and emissions equipment. That never happens in China. China has tough emissions standards on paper, but the law is written so that the regulators don't have any enforcement powers. So Chinese manufacturers simply slap stickers on vehicles claiming they have all the mandatory emissions equipment without installing any of it. Technically this is a crime, but the law's written so there's literally nothing anyone can do about it.

And if you don't think environmental regulations make a difference, this is what New York looked like in 1970. Note that that isn't a sepia tinted black and white photo, it's true color. Granted it shows an exceptionally bad day, but before the Clean Air Act got strengthened in the mid 70s bad smog was pretty common. If you look at pictures of American cities from the 70s you'd think that photo technology of the day put a blue or yellow haze on stuff in the distance (like this). It wasn't the film, cities actually looked that way a lot of the time.

Predicting bad pollution days isn't "fighting" pollution, it's living with it. If you want to fight pollution you've got to stop people from polluting. You've got to catch them at it, fine them, and in some cases throw them in jail. Pollution like they have in China is nothing short of manslaughter on a national scale. 1.6 million people die every year from it.

Comment Re:This is why (Score 1) 196

I see your problem. The benefits don't trickle down from the ruling class. They don't "trickle down" from anywhere. They are shared. If anything, in US late-stage capitalism, the benefits trickle UP to the financial elite.

We're in agreement there - except for the characterization: It's late stage mercantalism, where government supports a handful of the established rich and vice-versa.

Like "True Communism", Capitalism hasn't really been tried, at least within the last century in the US. What aspects had been tried have been subverted by tie-ins among the financial and governmental elites. (And, yes, I agree that actually trying it, in the presence of the perverse incentive systems of governmental/political power, is very difficult.)

A group of people pulling together will always be stronger than one person pulling.

And a group of people pulling together voluntarily, because they each decided for themselves that pulling together helps meet their own goals, will always be stronger than a similarly-sized group being forced to pull by their masters.

Ayn Rand was ...

Ah HA! You are far enough away from the subject that you have Objectivism confused with libertarianism and Libertariansim. Oh, my...

Libertarianism (small or large L) is a very big tent. It can include every idea system that contains some variant of "don't hit first" and has at least some recognition of ownership of property.

Objectivism is important - because it is an internally-consistent philosophy, accessible to high-function Psychopaths that teaches them that playing nice with others has big benefits for them. This leaves a high-function compensated psychopath - who thinks he knows the one true way to be free (much like a religious fanatic thinks he knows the one true faith). He gets along with the giant crowd of other sorts, (perhaps seething much of the time at, or pitying them for, how they're "getting it wrong"), because Objectivism includes that same principle. So he has to let them run their own lives as long as they don't try to run the lives of others.

Teaching Objectivism is the one "treatment" that the Canadian prison system's research showed actually DID reduce recidivism - drastically. But Objectivists are just one club in the vast, chaotic, circus that is the union of the (Ll)ibertarians and the "freedom movement".

Comment Re:Holy Fuck (Score 1, Funny) 260

How long has the earth been around?
6,000 years.

How long have we had satellites watching or even just regular and reliable weather records.
Sheeple. We don't have satellites and never made it to the moon.

Now tell me what "we've never seen before" means. And no,this would not be " the evidence you are looking for".
It means that since God created Man and the Earth 6,000 years ago we have not seen this type of weather. It's a lie though, we had it all the time but never took the time to document it.

Seriously, you people dismiss the lack of hurricanes and just weather or even blame it on Global Warming and now you want to blame 3 at once on Global Warming.
Global warming is indeed a hoax perpetrated by Satan.

I have a theory. Everything that happens or doesn't happen in this world is because of my farts. Under the "science" of Climate change, it's irrefutable.
Satan is in your anus if that is true.

Comment Buy an island (Score 2, Funny) 720

I'd buy an island and make a nation out of it. I would live there with the family and my army of 1000 topless female slave-warriors. The island would have a private airstrip and a private jet, piloted by a topless female slave-warrior, that would whisk us around the globe. People would become jealous of my topless female slave-warriors because Grub Island would be the only place on the planet with them.

I would have a lottery with $1,000,000 ticket prices. The prize would be one week on my island with 10 topless female slave-warriors to be at the winner's beck and call. After the winner departed Grub Island, the other topless female slave-warriors would destroy the lottery winner's 10 because they would then be soiled and not worthy of me.

Comment Re: Running the numbers... (Score 1) 196

I've paid into this fund for over 70 line-years. Not sure what the rates were over that time (or how the inflation rate and other cost-of-money factors affected the value that was collected). If it had been at the current rate the dollar count would be maybe a quarter of one subscriber's subsidy. But the dollar has inflated by a factor of about ten over that period, so I expect I've paid in substantially more value than the average amount they'll be spending on one home's subsidy.

It will be interesting to see some of that money actually spent for the stated purpose. But given that this is a government operation I expect the usual level of SNAFU.

The most difficult thing in the world is to know how to do a thing and to watch someone else doing it wrong, without commenting. -- T.H. White

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