Please create an account to participate in the Slashdot moderation system


Forgot your password?

Comment: Re:It changes when the 'wrong' people do it. (Score 1) 17

by smitty_one_each (#49606063) Attached to: When did Net Neutrality change?

There are plenty people that can actually work happily together without any such nonsense.

I defy you to show a non-trivial, worked example. Even for a stylized case like a symphony, there are still interpersonal rivalries at work. The "entropy of the human soul" can be minimalized (at, say, a monastary), but never retired. And a symphony or a monastery are miniscule, edge cases.

Comment: Re:Sanders amazes me (Score 1) 344

by ScentCone (#49604709) Attached to: Bernie Sanders, Presidential Candidate and H-1B Skeptic

it's a distraction by statistic

Nonsense. It's not a distraction, it's different topic than the ebb and flow of entitlement programs like Social Security and Medicare (which are transfer welfare taxes). Income taxes are what pay for all discretionary spending (the military, federal agencies like the EPA, the FAA, the FCC and a jillion other activities). There's a good reason we look at all of those differently than we do the entitlement programs.

And ... capital gains? You do realize that a whole lot of middle class people also earn capital gains, right? Directly or indirectly, through things like mutual funds. Warren Buffet's secretary can put a pizza's worth of cash every month into some investments when she's young, and can and should be looking forward to earning some money from that. You know, just like him: taking money on which she's already paid taxes, and putting it entirely at risk in an investment that stimulates the economy and if and when it happens to pay off, paying more taxes on that activity.

If Warren Buffet loses money in an investment? He doesn't get to write that off against his income taxes - he just loses it, plain and simple. But he's smart, and usually makes good investments. If he's making money, the money he risked is being put to very good use in an active economy. That's the entire reason why we reward that risk taking with a lower tax rate - because we want more of that risk taking to happen.

All of which has nothing to do with transfer entitlement taxes.

Comment: Re:Assumptions (Score 4, Interesting) 63

by OverlordQ (#49604415) Attached to: Hacking the US Prescription System

> I think it is far more likely that the pharmacy sells this information to insurance, pharmaceutical, and marketing companies.

This. Pretty much every prescription the doctor writes effectively goes straight to the drug reps. If you stop prescribing, they'll know, and come in and bribe^H^H^H^Hinquire as to why you stopped prescribing their drug.

Comment: Re:Sanders amazes me (Score 1, Informative) 344

by ScentCone (#49604033) Attached to: Bernie Sanders, Presidential Candidate and H-1B Skeptic

they never actually do pay the taxes they claim

Nonsense. Well-off people pay the vast majority of the income taxes in this country. Nearly half the people in the country pay no income taxes at all (though they still get to vote on what happens to the money collected from the other people who do).

The top 5% of earners pay almost 60% of the taxes. The top 25% of earners pay over 86% of the taxes. The bottom HALF of the country pays under 3% of those taxes. So how do you come up with "never actually do pay" - ? These numbers come from the IRS. The people who cash the checks you say aren't being written.

Comment: Re:THINK (Score 1) 344

by ScentCone (#49604017) Attached to: Bernie Sanders, Presidential Candidate and H-1B Skeptic

Gore won by the most conservative count

Gore LOST in every carefully examined recount conducted in exhaustive after-the-fact tests run by a panel of journalism outlets (including some that actively opposed Bush and worked to get Gore in office). Most importantly, Gore lost in studied recounts that followed the capricious guidelines he tried to get the Florida supreme court to enforce.

The supreme court made a corrupt ruling and appointed Bush the winner.

No, the Supreme Court stopped a corrupt recount process, aided by a partisan state court, from continuing under unreasonable and unfair conditions. They didn't "appoint" Bush the winner, they called out Gore's cherry-picking, standards-shifting strategy for being the craven election-grab it was trying to be.

Comment: Re:They are burning down a city (Score 1, Funny) 181


So, the corruption you're worried about is something that you think will be fixed by trashing a liquor store? By looting and burning the local CVS? By burning down an almost completely senior center being built specifically to improve the local quality of life in that crappy neighborhood?

Yes, the democrats that have been running that city for decades have plenty to answer for in the way of imperfect services being rendered. But unless you think it's the city government's role to step in between two people and prevent pregnancy from occurring, or to follow thousands of kids around to make sure they actually bother to go to school, then what exactly is it you're proposing? Who is it that starts and populates violent local gangs? Who is it that kills the vast majority of those who die in that area, and scares those who aren't involved out of doing anything about it? Why is it that businesses don't see any point in risking their money to launch a venture in such a neighborhood - perhaps because they can't find employable local people to actually work there, and can't find a market for their goods and services in an area that's filled with abandoned buildings and fatherless kids running drug markets?

The problem isn't government corruption, the problem is in thinking that what amounts to a poisonous local culture is the government's area of responsibility. Those neighborhoods are crap because the people that live there can't keep their own kids under control long enough to turn them into viable members of human civilization. And those that do have the wherewithal to do so leave (along with whatever economic activity they might have represented) because the local culture is completely toxic to their kids' success.

Comment: Re:Motive (Score 0, Offtopic) 181

There is a much more credible, obvious, proximate threat to life and property than there would be with some shadowy nonspecific radical-jihadist plot. Things were literally on fire, people.

A few thousand reduced-to-ashes New Yorkers might, if they were alive, argue with your dismissal of their deaths at the hands of radical jihaddis as being non-proximate, and shadowy. They are indeed quite literally dead. Multiple very non-shadowy attempts (some very successful) by the same and related groups to kill other people, in large numbers, have also happened since then.

Comment: Re:Cost of Programmers Cost of Engines (Score 2) 104

by AuMatar (#49601669) Attached to: Should Developers Still Pay For Game Engines?

Of course there's trivial costs in a business. If you're worrying about the costs of pens and whether you can get them 10 cents cheaper, you're wasting your time. If you're worried about the cost savings of turning the thermostat from 70 to 71, you're wasting your time. If you're worried about the cost of something that is less than 1% of your budget, you're wasting your time- even if you reduce it to 0 you'd have saved more by focusing elsewhere. A good businessman realizes whats worth being concerned about and what you just have to live with. Nothing is 100% efficient in life.

Comment: Re:Poker is a lot more complex... (Score 1) 86

by AuMatar (#49601591) Attached to: Humans Dominating Poker Super Computer

Card counting is keeping track of cards between hands in an effort to figure out altered odds on the current hand. For example, if you're playing single shoe blackjack and have seen 10 high cards out of 11 cards, you know low cards have a higher probability than normal.

That doesn't exist in Holdem, because there's no carry over between hands. Each is an individual event, with no altered probability from previous hands. You can calculate odds, but that's easy even for a human at holdem- if there's X cards which you think will give you the winning hand (called outs), your odds are X/47 on the turn and X/46 on the river, or just under 2% per out. For seeing both cards on the flop its 1-(47-X)*(46-X)/(47*46), or about 4% per out. Generally you just use 2% and 4%, as the nature of holdem makes it unlikely that percent or two you'd be off will make a long term difference.

So there are odds calculation. But there's no card counting. Also, card counting isn't the amazing thing some people think it is- if you don't play deep into a shoe, it isn't much of an advantage. In some games like baccarat its been mathematically proven to not give an advantage at all.

There are 2 poker games where it does help- razz and 7 card stud. This is because each player has a unique hand, including individual up cards. When they fold their hands are mucked. Remembering all the cards which were showing at any time is an advantage, as it can effect the odds of drawing to a straight/flush/full house. I would suspect a computer may have a big edge over beginners on those games due to that. But a pro at those games knows how to remember the dead cards already, I'm not sure it would be much of an advantage at high end stud.

Never invest your money in anything that eats or needs repainting. -- Billy Rose