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Comment: Re:WSJ is owned by NewsCorp now, right? (Score 1) 231

by FooAtWFU (#49760161) Attached to: WSJ Crowdsources Investigation of Hillary Clinton Emails

No, of course FDR didn't cause the Depression (just extended it).

He was a commie in the 30s and early 40s, despite the fact he never sent anyone to the Gulag (kinda the defining aspect of Communism in the 30s and early 40s)

If you want to be pedantic about what is and what isn't Communism, you could at least break out the Manifesto because I can think of a lot of ideological nitpicks that you could put in advance of "did not establish a gulag".

the business community fought him tooth and nail the whole way ... but he enriched his friends in business, etc.

Yeah, go read about the National Recovery Administration. Essentially they suspended antitrust law if you adopted a certain minimum wage. Clarence Darrow (of Scopes Monkey Trial fame) briefly headed up the National Recovery Review Board, a body which issued a few nice reports on how effectively this crushed smaller businesses, and was then promptly dissolved. You could try reading one or two. (Of course the Supreme Court found the act establishing the administration unconstitutional, leading to the Judicial Procedures Reform Bill of 1937, an utterly transparent attempt to pack the Supreme Court.) The Montgomery Ward incident, incidentally, was much much later, in 1944, during the war.

but then it was never sold as a way to reduce overall costs.

Hahahhahahahahahahhaha... let's see what Google can say on the topic in the next 15 seconds... Key White House allies are dramatically shifting their attempts to defend health care legislation, abandoning claims that it will reduce costs and the deficit and instead stressing a promise to "improve it." -- Politico, 8/9/2010. (I'm sure I could find more coverage in the event that you don't think Politico's worth the paper it's printed on.)

Comment: Re:WSJ is owned by NewsCorp now, right? (Score 1) 231

by FooAtWFU (#49758241) Attached to: WSJ Crowdsources Investigation of Hillary Clinton Emails

they were the ones beating the "FDR is a Commie" drum when he created Social Security, etc.

FDR was a Commie, though. We only see Social Security seven or eight decades after the fact, but the FDR administration completely overhauled the nation's economy, especially the agricultural sector, placing enormous swaths under extensive government control, with explicit production targets and price targets. The administration actively disbelieved in competition and a free market, and thought it could restore the nation to prosperity by paying people to fallow their land and by burning crops. By "disbelieved in a free market", I don't mean that they had a bunch of Regulators out there keeping Rich and Powerful People from doing Bad Things. I mean that they kept the Rich and Powerful People in business because they were rich and powerful friends of the FDR administration, and they did a lot to help them.

The FDR administration's interventions are a primary reason that the Great Depression was so Great. Fortunately, most of them were disassembled after World War II, resulting in an impressive game of catch-up as the nation returned to economic growth and prosperity (and unfortunately convincing some people that war is an economic catalyst instead of an exercise in spending valuable effort blowing stuff up, including some of the most economically valuable stuff out there, human lives).

Anyway. If you hate Big Agriculture, factory farms, and crop monocultures, then you should despise FDR, who erected the system which brought them upon us.

As for the rest, Social Security was the icing on the cake. It's an out-and-out wealth transfer in a way that the other programs, but at least it's an honest wealth transfer -- a generational wealth transfer, and future generations are likely to be richer. It makes a ton of economic sense as a transfer program (by tying your retirement pay to actually working it avoids the worst negative incentives of transfer programs, among other things). You just need to make sure the demographics and economic growth work out relative to the benefits -- easily doable. From an economic standpoint, it's wildly superior to the current health-care reform effort, which... let's just say it hasn't been a wild success at delivering its headline promise of cheaper health care for all.

Comment: Re:"Cashless" is meaningless (Score 2) 294

by FooAtWFU (#49702429) Attached to: The Solution To Argentina's Banking Problems Is To Go Cashless
The funny thing is that the Germans have already substantially bailed out Greece's existing debt, and everyone expects that they'll take massive debt write-offs. But the real problem is that the bailout was finite, so suddenly Greece needed to run a balanced budget -- instead of a 10% deficit. Greek politicians have sold their public on the idea that these cuts are the fault of the Germans being really mean and obnoxious and demanding onerous repayment schedules. This is part of an impressively effective propaganda machine for an increasingly authoritarian government where Syriza officials are characterizing dissent from their policies as treasonous "fifth column" collaboration with the shadowy outside capitalist conspiracies.

What Greece really needs is reform that will allow its private sector to actually conduct capitalist, profit-making businesses. Presently it is hampered by an onerous and corrupt bureaucracy that enjoys bribery and favors existing cartels over new businesses, some of the world's strongest labor unions who will fight any reform that would make new employers interested in establishing a business, and a population which views more government spending and government jobs as the answer to all economic woes (the public sector is an awesome 40% of Greece's economy) even as the government has run out of tax revenues to spend. Speaking of which, Greece also needs to somehow move from "taxes are stupidly high because most people evade them anyway" to a normal regime.

Instead, Greece will stifle dissent and double down on a system that has made universal healthcare available to anyone who can afford to bribe their doctor. Their exit from the Euro and further economic stagnation is probably inevitable.

Comment: Re:Someone pissed they didn't get hired? (Score 2) 296

I have never, not once, heard a programmer use the word "brogrammer". I have only heard it used by SJWs when denigrating programmers, and the companies they work for (Amazon in this case).

I'm a programmer, and I've met some brogrammers in my lifetime. They were easy enough to tell from regular programmers: they're the ones on Caltrain sipping Budweiser and talking about how great it is to work at Zynga and how those people who got their RSUs revoked last week had it coming and don't deserve any sympathy. (Remember that episode?) Typically there's a bit of a scruffy look to them. I cannot make a solid characterization of their actual programming skills (or lack thereof).

I'd be surprised to find tons of brogrammers at Amazon; it struck me as less "bro" and more "nerd". I am generally dubious of the submitter's characterization.

Comment: Re:Canadian Memorial to Vietnam opponents (Score 2) 161

by FooAtWFU (#49607165) Attached to: Statues of Assange, Snowden and Manning Go Up In Berlin

You can tell me all you want that the US intervention in Vietnam was disastrous and should have been avoided. You can say what you will about its execution, and your public policy interpretation. Have fun. And maybe all the draft-dodgers gone up to Canada believed this verbatim. Sure.

But while you're considering US motives, please pause a moment to pay some respect for the million or so (South) Vietnamese who were killed in the war proper (the majority civilian), and for the millions who died afterwards in re-education camps, doing hard labor, escaping the country on ramshackle boats, executed for being enemies of the state, or simply starved through disastrous implementation of collectivized agriculture policies.

Comment: Re:Motive (Score 4, Interesting) 203

by FooAtWFU (#49601437) Attached to: Inside the Military-Police Center That Spies On Baltimore's Rioters

Yeah... If anything this is a better justification than they had before. There were looters running through stores, rioters burning down buildings, and the one guy even puncturing the fire hose when the fire department tried to put the flames out. 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.

Comment: Re:Halt Trading? (Score 2) 185

by FooAtWFU (#49580431) Attached to: How One Tweet Wiped $8bn Off Twitter's Value
NASDAQ will halt trading any time your stock suddenly starts doing badly enough (in terms of percentage drop during an individual trading session) but it won't do you much good if people have fundamentally lost faith in your business. All it does in that case is postpone the inevitable by a couple hours at best.

Comment: Re:Agile has saved and will save many companies. (Score 1) 208

by FooAtWFU (#49580019) Attached to: IBM CIO Thinks Agile Development Might Save Company
The problem with agile is that it's a brand that has no owner. You can see this as a tragedy-of-the-commons or as an extension of Gresham's Law (when people can't tell the difference, bad "agile" firms will drive out the good)... and assessing the quality of the efforts by which people have actually attempted to pursue principles associated with agile like "incremental delivery" or "extensive test suites to support refactoring efforts", as opposed to mere devotion to superficial components of the formula, is very difficult given the closed-door nature of most corporate development shops, especially as regards their failures.

While this is not an indictment of any "true Scotsman" agile, it does point out a real risk associated with the actual pursuit of the quality of your Scotsman when adopting agile processes, which will be the first risk that a company will face in the process.

"Facts are stupid things." -- President Ronald Reagan (a blooper from his speeach at the '88 GOP convention)