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Comment: Re:So What (Score 1) 292

by Marxist Hacker 42 (#49379395) Attached to: Poverty May Affect the Growth of Children's Brains

2nd potential mechanism. Due to competition for rare leadership positions, serfs showing leadership potential are killed outright, leaving behind only those with brains enough to do the job that the lord wants them to do. Once a dynasty and traditional economy are established, eight nor nine generations of this and you'll end up with a genetic separation between "noble blood/highborn" and "serf/lowborn" populations.

For an extreme comedic version of this, see, these English actors portrayed the four class English system perfectly, complete with simulated IQ levels.

Comment: Re:So What (Score 1) 292

by Marxist Hacker 42 (#49379219) Attached to: Poverty May Affect the Growth of Children's Brains

In feudalism, and in certain forms of tribalism, the chief/King and his family eat first, and then everybody else eats what is left over from their table. (in Calapuya Chinook, the title of the chief was the Hias Mucktymuck- quite literally "the dude sitting at the head of the table", from which we get the saying "Lord High MucktyMuck"). I'd call that a very powerful selection mechanism.

Comment: Re:I'm all for abolishing the IRS (Score 1) 297

by Slashdot Parent (#49379003) Attached to: Sign Up At Before Crooks Do It For You

Maybe, it depends on how you define consumption. If you use a narrow definition that sort of tax would be incredibly regressive.

I'm not in favor of a straight up consumption tax, but I'll point out that there are ways around the regressivity of it.

For instance, you could exempt necessities like groceries and clothing items that cost less than a winter coat from the tax. Or you could just exempt the first $x of consumption tax by giving out a cash payment to everyone in the amount of $x.

Comment: Re:Worthless until they do something about reviews (Score 1) 114

If they restrict reviews to paying customers (customers who paid through Amazon's), I think that would make it too expensive to game the system on a large scale. How much would you be willing to pay for the privilege of writing a fake review?

Comment: Re:as a professional service provider... (Score 1) 114

i wouldn't subject my business to amazon's policies, pricing rules, commissions, or the very real possibility of having my business trashed in reviews by shady competitors.

You already have that risk with Yelp and similar services.

My guess is that with Amazon, they won't let non-customers review you. Why should they? So even if your competitors go to the trouble of actually hiring you for something and then giving you a bad review, how many bad reviews could they realistically generate compared to all of your good reviews from real customers?

I'm not saying that BS reviews are a nonissue, but I think that you are overestimating size of the issue.

Comment: Re:Not sure, if this is "news for nerds" (Score 1) 114

For one thing, standardized prices imply consistent quality. That might happen when you're making widgets. For labor with any degree of skill - I'm rather doubtful that this is the case.

I'm not even so concerned about consistent price as the fact that I think Amazon will increase quality.

A service provider who is dealing only with individuals doesn't lose much if he/she botches an assignment. I mean, how much do you really spend on a plumber or electrician in your lifetime? But an Amazon service provider who generates a lot of customer complaints is going to get booted from the program which presumably feeds them a lot of business, so there is a higher incentive to do each job right.

[Crash programs] fail because they are based on the theory that, with nine women pregnant, you can get a baby a month. -- Wernher von Braun