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Comment: Re:Because they are smarter (Score 1) 332

by Dcnjoe60 (#49522755) Attached to: Update: No Personhood for Chimps Yet

The DNA between a male ape and a male human is so small it's almost the same amount as the difference between the genders! A great deal of fighting was done just to admit women as equals and that hasn't been won worldwide and nobody seems to treat them as equals yet...

The difference, depending on how one looks at it is around 4%. Of course, a sea cucumber is about 10%. That is because most of the DNA is involved with things like cell division, and processing cellular functions, etc. Now, if you look at just the portion of DNA that makes an ape an ape and a human a human, the difference is far larger.

The DNA argument is a bit like saying that visible light and ultraviolet light are basically almost the same thing, just different wavelengths of electromagnetic spectrum. That would be true. On the otherhand, you might want to think twice about standing under a UV-C bulb versus a standard incandescent.

Comment: H1-B? (Score 1) 332

by Dcnjoe60 (#49522691) Attached to: Update: No Personhood for Chimps Yet

Well, if these chimps are persons under the law, then I assume they are here on an H1-B visa and are reporting and paying their taxes based on the housing and food allowance they receive at their employer's place of business. If not, they should be locked up for tax evasion. Likewise, the university in question, I am sure, is paying the employer's share of FICA/Medicare and has verified their I-9 status.

As silly as all of that sounds, if one is a person under the law, then one must comply with all of the laws.

Comment: Re:The UK Government Are Massively Out Of Touch (Score 2) 190

by Dcnjoe60 (#49518253) Attached to: Assange Talk Spurs UK Judges To Boycott Legal Conference

The man is accused of releasing state secrets and threatening to release more.

No he's not, he is accused of rape. That is the accusation from which he is running away. As far as I'm aware, there have, so far been no formal charges of releasing state secrets.

No, he is being accused of being in position of releasing state secrets by countries the UK has extradition treaties with. However, neither that or the rape allegations are what make him a fugitive. The fact that he skipped bail is what makes him a fugitive. The other charges, espionage, rape, etc., still need to be proven in a court of law. The bail skipping is a matter of record and does not.

Comment: Re:Billionaire saved by taxpayer (Score 2) 118

"but low and middle income grad students, who really are the future"

How so? Does the government get some guarantee on these grad students that's any better than what the DOE has? I don't think so.

Actually, yes. These loans can't even be dismissed via bankruptcy and many government benefits are tied to the repayment of them.

Comment: Re:Billionaire saved by taxpayer (Score 2) 118

So because one wrong policy is wrong, we should make all other policies that are remotely related wrong too? Is that what you are arguing here?

How about we just fix the wrong one (higher-than-mortgage-rates interest-bearing student loans)?

I, for one, would support that 100%. But, until they do, why should billionaires get a better government interest rate than the average person?

Comment: Re:Billionaire saved by taxpayer (Score 1) 118

That is not capitalism, but corporatism (which is the politically correct modern name for fascism).

No, "corporatism" was Mussolini's preferred phrase, over that of "fascism." It is not "fascism" by any stretch of the imagination for a company to get a loan from the government.

Since there was another option, although less palatable to Musk, he should not have received a federal bailout.

And subjected himself to the whims of the corporations that gave him money? I'm sure they totally wouldn't interfere with the way the company operated, they'd never start demanding ridiculous growth at the cost of product quality and customer service, not at all.

unlike the GM bailout, this bailout was to somebody in the 1% group to enable him to make luxury automobiles for others in the 1%.

At worst there is no difference. At best, it prevented an actually innovative company from sinking and its technology dispersing into the market, never to be heard from again while GM et. al. continued doing what they were doing.

Yes, Mussolini preferred the term corporatism, over fascism, but corporatism, today, is the acceptable term because of fascism has ties to Hitler and Mussolini.

It doesn't matter if if Google or anybody else would have changed Tesla, that is not the point. As an investor in the company, they have every right to do so, up to the point of their percentage ownership. That's how corporations work, after all. The government had no need to bail out Tesla as there was private financing available, unless you want to argue, they wanted to further Musk's vision for Tesla. However, that brings us back to corporatism/fascism.

Finally, even if Tesla had a bunch of good, even innovative ideas, that doesn't make them an innovative company if they can't bring product to market. There are a lot of entrepreneurs that have good and innovative ideas, but unless you can deliver, they are simply dreams. Musk delivered, because the government made him a below market loan, that came from the taxpayers.

It sounds like you are arguing that government should fund billionaires companies because it might produce innovation. Historically, billionaires became billionaires because they took on the risk of promoting their vision, not the taxpayer, but maybe this is the New America, where government is needed to even run our companies.

Comment: Re:Billionaire saved by taxpayer (Score 4, Insightful) 118

But there is no such thing as a free market. Yet most people still agree that competition helps drive [pun] the economy.

It isn't really about a free market, but about capitalism as an economic system. According to capitalism, Tesla, should have gone to the banks or investors and if Musk's plan was good, he would have received the capital he needed to stave off bankruptcy. He actually did that and had a deal worked out. However, the government also intervened in the market and offered him a better deal. That is not capitalism, but corporatism (which is the politically correct modern name for fascism).

Either way, Musk and Tesla would have staved off bankruptcy, the difference is that with the government bailout/loan, Musk gets to keep control of Tesla, whereas the Google investment would have split control. It's not so much about a free market, but instead about the government intervening in the economy that seems to benefit only a select few. I'm not saying that the government should not have loaned the money to Musk. I am saying it should only have done so if there were no other option. Since there was another option, although less palatable to Musk, he should not have received a federal bailout.

Put differently, unlike the GM bailout, this bailout was to somebody in the 1% group to enable him to make luxury automobiles for others in the 1%. All paid for by the 99% who can't afford such a vehicle in the first place. It may be argued that GM was too big to allow to fail, but it is hard to argue that about Tesla, particularly when there was private financing available.

Comment: Re:Billionaire saved by taxpayer (Score 4, Insightful) 118

This is FUD. You may argue that Department of Energy should have acted as venture capitalist and demanded more return, but it is not a loss. It is potential profit that was not received. Congress explicitly required Department lend on low rates and they have good reasons for it. Department is not a venture capitalist and should not act as such, such activity should be left to private business, not Government entity. There is big difference between corporations requiring bailout because of their own mismanagement or fraud while doing usual business and corporations trying to introduce something completely new, that may benefit all taxpayers in the long run. Hence the loan was from Department of ENERGY, not Treasury.

And yet, the federal government makes loans to grad students in the 6% to 7% range. A failing tech company with a billionaire owner gets low interest loans because of the potential for the future, but low and middle income grad students, who really are the future get high rate loans.

Comment: Re:The UK Government Are Massively Out Of Touch (Score 2) 190

by Dcnjoe60 (#49511757) Attached to: Assange Talk Spurs UK Judges To Boycott Legal Conference

Assange is accused of releasing state secrets of a country of which he is neither a citizen or resident, in which he was not present in when he released them, from which he never sought or received a security clearance, and to which he never gave a secrecy oath or signed an NDA.

By what stretch of the imagination do you think he is, or should be, obligated to keep those secrets?

Did he come by those state secrets through legal means? Maybe, maybe not, that is what a trial could tell. Did he violate any laws from the countries involved with the possession of classified information? Many countries make it illegal to be in possession of classified materials one is not legally entitled to be in possession of. Again, that would take a court to decide. Finally, is he a willing accomplice to a crime in obtaining and disclosing this information? He may not have signed an oath or an NDA, but somebody might have done so. If so, he could, depending on the laws of said country, been an accomplice. Another thing for a court to decide.

The question shouldn't be about in what way is he obligated to keep or not to keep those secrets, but instead, whether or not he was involved, in any way, with espionage. Most "spies" don't do the actual theft of state secrets, either. The legal question to be answered is whether or not he is guilty of espionage and the answer either you, or me, or anybody else might give, doesn't really matter, it is a decision for the courts who hold jurisdiction to decide.

It seems that it is not in dispute that he willingly was in possession of and disclosed confidential information. You take the position that he has the moral, if not legal right to do so. Fine, if he took a moral stand and felt compelled to release the information as a matter of conscience, fine. But people take moral stands all the time and are willing to suffer the consequences. Why should he be different?

Comment: Re:The UK Government Are Massively Out Of Touch (Score 1) 190

by Dcnjoe60 (#49509701) Attached to: Assange Talk Spurs UK Judges To Boycott Legal Conference

Name one government that actually is in touch with their civilians. Everybody I spoke with is pro-Assange (on- and offline) not one government is...

Well, since governments are responsible for upholding the law, until he has his day in court, it makes sense that governments would not be pro-Assange. The man is accused of releasing state secrets and threatening to release more. From a government perspective, he is involved in espionage. Why would you expect them to be supportive of him?

Comment: Re:The UK Government Are Massively Out Of Touch (Score 4, Informative) 190

by Dcnjoe60 (#49509683) Attached to: Assange Talk Spurs UK Judges To Boycott Legal Conference

I don't see why his being an alleged criminal means they aren't allowed to simply listen to him.

He is more than an alleged criminal. There is a warrant out for his arrest and he is seeking asylum in a foreign embassy. The judges are correct, his current status is that of being a fugitive. Since it is possible that Great Britain may one day extradite, it would be improper for them to share the stage (even if he is doing so remotely) with him. If nothing else, it would question whether they, the judges, could be impartial if his case came to trial.

Comment: Re:My 'old man' is coming out (Score 1) 407

by Dcnjoe60 (#49355303) Attached to: Millennial Tech Workers Losing Ground In US

Seriously... have you worked with US millennials lately? I'm in a senior position where I work and regularly get to interact with new hires that have some form of computer science or MIS degree and are unable to comprehend simple sql or even how to use excel. Sure they got great grades and can kinda sorta regurgitate the facts they had to memorize (and mostly forget) for their classes but God forbid you ask them to do any sort of independent thinking. On top of it almost without exception they always think they are the smartest people in the room.

Well, you can do what companies did in the old days before so many people had a degree and actually train your employees. Many of today's technology graduates are book smart but that's about it. I used to work for a large state agency

Comment: Re:Government can't do much about it. (Score 1) 407

by Dcnjoe60 (#49355129) Attached to: Millennial Tech Workers Losing Ground In US

Government can do things to encourage students to go into STEM programs, but it can't increase the relative market value of STEM jobs. Not without an exceptionally good reason to directly hire most grads for STEM jobs with salaries far above current market rates.

Historically, supply and demand determined wages. However, big business, with the help of government, doesn't want that, so they import excess workers saying they can't find qualified applicants. This holds down wages, which discourages people from seeking the skills that would make them qualified. Stopping H1B Visas would go a long way to increasing the market value of STEM jobs. However, that is unlikely to happen because higher wages means lower dividends.

Comment: Problem isn't STEM, but statistics (Score 2) 407

by Dcnjoe60 (#49355051) Attached to: Millennial Tech Workers Losing Ground In US

The problem is not that US STEM students are falling behind. The problem is in who gets tested. In many, many countries, only those students who show an aptitude for a STEM field get educated for that field, while many others end up getting trade skills. So, the top 10% of the US scores tend to single out the cream of the crop, in general, while the top 10% of others is the cream of the crop of the cream of the crop.

It would be similar to only using people in the comparison in the US who scored 32 or above on the ACT when comparing with other countries. But in the US, anybody who can pay (or borrow) can go to college, so the testing is using different types of populations which skews the statistics.

To be meaningful, statistics need to have the same base for comparison. You would think they would teach that in a STEM curriculum.

We don't really understand it, so we'll give it to the programmers.

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