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Comment: Oppression of young people (Score 1) 135

How do you feel about contradictory laws that, while they customarily allow suffrage and personal accountability at the age of 18, restrict the consumption of alcohol or possession of firearms or other items considered "dangerous" to those age 21 or older? What about the contradiction of prosecuting those under 18 "as adults"? Do you feel that the increasing US state regulations placed on child labor, which greatly restrict or totally exclude teenagers from the workplace, are denying young people valuable life experience?

Comment: Barbie (Score 1) 135

Referring to the Sports Illustrated controversy, you stated:

She encourages an unrealistic expectation of beauty grounded in narrow ideals-- whiteness, thinness, a lack of hair and an abundance of breast tissue-- instead of kindness, smarts, self-confidence, or athleticism.

1. Were you aware that the Barbie line includes dolls of different skin colors? How would you plausibly represent the diversity of skin color in a single example?
2. Where would you add hair to a Barbie doll?
3. How would you project kindness, smarts, and self-confidence from a doll?
4. You believe that Barbie has too much "breast tissue". Does this indicate you have a bias against women with large breasts?
5. You believe that Barbie is too thin. Do you believe this contradicts your assertion that Barbie project athleticism, which usually precludes obesity?

Comment: The Empire Strikes Back (Score 1) 135

At 17 years of age, you do not have enough life experience to say anything of real importance about anything involving the greater issues facing society.

How perfectly appropriate that these choice lines should be posted by to Slashdot by an Anonymous Coward.

The timing couldn't be bettered as well.

We should certainly laud Mattel for deciding that 2014 is the year Barbie strikes out on her own as a career woman after 55 years and 150-plus jobs (including hating math and babysitting, with a welcome stint as a computer engineer in 2010).

But Entrepreneur Barbie reminds us that --- like every other ostensibly inspiring incarnation of the doll --- her main role is to look pretty and wear lots of pink.

In the end, both [Supermodel Barbie and Entrepreneur Barbie] are part of the same old problem. As 16-year-old feminist and former TED speaker Adora Svitak told Forbes' Denise Restauri this week:

''She encourages an unrealistic expectation of beauty grounded in narrow ideals --- whiteness, thinness, a lack of hair and an abundance of breast tissue --- instead of kindness, smarts, self-confidence, or athleticism.''

Mattel's Latest Affront To Little Girls: Entrepreneur Barbie [Feb 2014]

I have nothing against padded bras in general. But my immediate thought in the store was, Why the hell does a teenage girl need one?

The issue of the over-sexualizing of girls from an early age has come to the forefront with a recent news story about model Thylane Lena-Rose Blondeau posing suggestively for the cover of Vogue magazine. Over a series of photos, the ten-year-old is shown sprawled on leopard-print cushions, wearing a skimpy gold dress, stiletto heels, and posing heavily made-up, with rouge and lipstick. She's ten years old, yet she looks scarily adult in the photos.

By creating so many illusory images of physical perfection, whether on store aisles or storefront ads, magazine covers or TV shows, we speak more to the profit margins of companies than the self-esteem of today's girls. The unsaid message of that endless rack of juniors' pushup bras? No matter what size you are, it still isn't good enough.

Would You Buy This for Your Daughter? [Aug 2011]

Comment: Re:why can't we go back to the old shareware syste (Score 3, Informative) 90

You paid for WinZip? That bloated piece of crap? When there's only about three dozen different free compression applications? You don't even have to resort to classical freeware, there are FOSS programs that will do the job quite nicely, with a polished GUI for those who don't like CLIs.

Comment: Re:Here we go again (Score 3, Interesting) 367

by Shakrai (#48428591) Attached to: As Amazon Grows In Seattle, Pay Equity For Women Declines

How about we start with the fact that your senior MALE engineer doesn't disappear for several months (with pay) in the middle of a big crunch so he can be a daddy.

I'm sorry but I think you've mistaken the United States for a Nordic Social Democracy or something. If a new parent (male or female) receives several months off with pay that's a benefit willingly provided their employer so it stands to reason they're not going to bellyache about it. The only benefit employers are mandated to offer in the United States is provided for by the Family Medical Leave Act. Mom is entitled to no more than 12 weeks off work, without pay, and that's only if she works for a company with >=50 employees. Kudos to her employer if they offer more than that but they're not required to do so.

I could contrast this experience with the foreign country I'm most familiar with (Finland) but it doesn't look very good for the United States. Different culture and country of course, I doubt we could ever match what they offer, but we certainly could do a lot better than we're doing right now....

Comment: Re:Here we go again (Score 2) 367

by Shakrai (#48428507) Attached to: As Amazon Grows In Seattle, Pay Equity For Women Declines

I think it's funny that people are surprised that burglaries are skyrocketing in Seattle (and to a lesser extent the rest of Washington). Legalized drugs and outlawed firearms has consistently lead to property crimes

Outlawed firearms? Washington has shall issue concealed carry and relatively liberal (by American standards) firearm laws. It's not exactly Utah but it ain't New York either....

Comment: Re:Beware the T E R R O R I S T S !! (Score 1) 414

by Shakrai (#48427115) Attached to: Republicans Block Latest Attempt At Curbing NSA Power

I said logistical support; I didn't claim that we flew more sorties than they did. They needed access to American force multiplers, i.e., air-to-air refueling assets, communications assets, underway replenishment ships, and so on. That was originally to be the extent of our intervention but it expanded beyond that and I believe we did in fact fly more sorties than the British or French. It's hard to find definitive numbers on this since the mission was flown under NATO auspices and the sorties aren't broken out by member in any of the information I've been able to find, they're just listed as "NATO sorties."

Ultimately I don't really care who flew more sorties; I was just pointing out the fact that even the British and French lack the ability to wage an extended campaign beyond their shores without support from the United States. I could tweak British pride further by pointing out that the operation to recover the Falklands would have likewise failed without American logistical support and the British military of 1980 had a lot more capability than the British military of 2014. If that were to happen again today the UK would be royally screwed, they've let their capabilities atrophy that badly.

With few exceptions European countries just don't see the value of investing in defense. NATO members commit to spending at least 2% of their GDP on defense but only five out of twenty eight members (the United States, the United Kingdom, Greece, France, Turkey, and Estonia) actually live up to this obligation. Most of the members of NATO can't even defend themselves, much less contribute to collective defense, and the situation is even worse if you look at the military capabilities of non-NATO EU members.

Comment: Re: This is a good reminder for all technocrats (Score 0) 192

by bill_mcgonigle (#48426057) Attached to: Lessons Learned From Google's Green Energy Bust

government sponsors the basic research, then they kill it, then they prevent industry from commercializing it when it would threaten extant corporate profits, especially in energy, and by extension military spending and petrodollar advantage. Google 'integral fast reactor', Branson, etc.

We've known how to make all the clean energy we need and clean up our nuclear waste problem at the same time for the past 20 years. We have a government problem, not a technical one.

"Those who will be able to conquer software will be able to conquer the world." -- Tadahiro Sekimoto, president, NEC Corp.