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Comment: Re:The over-65's swung it for No (Score 1) 173

by IamTheRealMike (#47946305) Attached to: Scotland Votes No To Independence

it's sad that the concept of independence and sovereignty boils down to mere money for some (or most) people.

Why? Scotland is not oppressed, it does not have severe racial/religious/ethnic divides with the rest of the UK. It was not conquered by England. Nobody has family members that have died because of the Union. In fact the Union has been ruled by Scottish PM's twice in recent history.

That makes splitting it out into a new country a largely technical matter of economics and future government policy. It's quite dry stuff. The Yes campaign chose to ignore this and attempted to whip up a notion of Scottish exceptionalism through the constant "fairer better society" rhetoric, but ultimately they lost because when people asked questions about the technical details of why Scotland would be better and whether it'd be worth the cost, they had no answers. Given that the primary impact of independence would be economic, this lack of planning proved fatal.

Comment: Re:The over-65's swung it for No (Score 1) 173

by IamTheRealMike (#47946241) Attached to: Scotland Votes No To Independence

How would that split have worked out in the end? The UK would swing wildly right... Quickly get involved in lots of wars, crack down on "terrorists" etc... Scotland would have swung wildly left, and quickly bankrupted themselves with social programs. Balance is a good thing, even if you're currently getting the short end of the stick.

Just because historically politics has been dominated by two bundled sets of largely unrelated policies doesn't mean it has to be that way.

In a post-independence UK, the rUK would have been temporarily dominated by the Tories until Labour, freed from the need to constantly try and drag their Scottish MPs away from hard-socialist economics, found a new voice for themselves that didn't easily pigeonhole into left vs right. For example they could have campaigned on a platform of fiscal responsibility combined with pacifist policies, pro EU integration and raising taxes specifically for the NHS. That would likely have been an appealing combination even to many existing Tory voters. It'd be difficult for them to take up such policies with credibility because in fact the UK was taken into the Iraq war by Tony Blair, a Scottish Labour PM. And Cameron's similar attempt to go to war in Syria was rejected by a coalition Parliament. But staking out pacifism as a policy seems like such an easy win it's surely only a matter of time until Labour gets a leader with vision again and they try something like this.

With respect to Scotland, I suspect they would have ended up following economic policies closely aligned with that of rUK despite all the rhetoric about building a "fairer society" (means taxing the rich more up there). For one, they already have the power to raise income taxes even without full independence and they haven't actually used it. Actually the SNP's only post-independence tax policy they formally adopted was lowering corporation tax to try and grab businesses from the rUK. There are no socialist parties in Scotland with any real heft, so after the post-independence street parties died down the Scots who all voted to build a "fairer society" would have discovered that the neoliberal consensus is called a consensus because it turns out a lot of people agree with it.

Comment: Re:25%?!? (Score 1) 173

by IamTheRealMike (#47946137) Attached to: Scotland Votes No To Independence

Anybody who wants secession is just bad at economics.

Maybe. But I read that Congress has a lower approval rating than cockroaches. I doubt economics is the only thing they're thinking about. Much like the Scottish case, this 25% is being driven by disdain with Washington politics. And remember, when Salmond got started support for independence was only about 20-25% in Scotland too (maybe a bit higher, I forgot, but it definitely wasn't 50%). So watch out!

Comment: Re:The over-65's swung it for No (Score 2) 173

by IamTheRealMike (#47946003) Attached to: Scotland Votes No To Independence

This reminds me the well known Americanism, "reality has a liberal bias".

I followed the BBC's coverage quite carefully and did not see any bias. What I did see is a lot of ardent highly emotional yes supporters interpret the stream of stories about the campaign as being against yes and therefore the authors must be biased. So let's take a look at your link about this "academic study" that claims to scientifically assess the bias of the BBC:

The study found that, overall, there was a greater total number of ‘No statements’ compared to Yes; a tendency for expert advice against independence to be more common; a tendency for reports to begin and end with statements favouring the No campaign; and a very strong pattern of associating the Yes campaign arguments and evidence with the personal wishes of Scottish First Minister Alex Salmond. Taken together, the coverage was considered to be more favourable for the No campaign.

Well fuck me. The evidence of this bias is that "expert advice against independence was more common"? Seriously? Did this guy even think before writing this so-called academic study? Here's another explanation: maybe expert opinion was against independence because it didn't make much sense?

What about "associating the Yes campaign arguments and evidence with the personal wishes of Scottish First Minister Alex Salmond"? The entire independence campaign can be summed up as the personal wish of Alex Salmond. He devoted his entire career to Scottish independence. He led the party that called for it. It has been his project since day one. No surprise that disentangling the arguments and evidence from his personal wishes is so hard, especially because the yes campaign was so lacking in detail and substance.

Last reason to see the BBC as biased, "a greater total number of ‘No statements’ compared to Yes". Well, that doesn't surprise me in the slightest. The entire yes campaign can be summed up as repeating over and over that everything will be better post-yes because Salmond says so and anyone who disagrees is a scaremonger. That was the entire argument for independence. If you're a journalist there's only so many times you can publish this viewpoint as a story before it stops being news. The arguments against independence on the other hand were complex and multi-faceted. There was the currency union issue of course, but also the question of how the EU would react, whether there'd be border controls, how assets would be split up, whether the oil projections were really accurate and then the steady stream of people either with expertise or in highly placed positions coming out against yes. There was lots to write about, new stories every day.

Given that state of affairs, I don't see how the media could possibly have published more articles that were pro-yes than pro-no simply because the yes side had nothing to say.

Also, the over-65's have the shortest time stake in this. plus have had the trappings of gold plated pensions that the generation behind them cannot look forward to. It's a disgusting state of affairs and as a Scot I am embarrassed for my country.

I'm embarrassed for your country too, partly because of absurd arguments like the ones you just deployed - essentially saying that old people can't use the internet and therefore must be stupid and uninformed. Perhaps you should take the next logical step and argue for their disenfranchisement too.

Comment: Re:confused (Score 2) 187

by CRCulver (#47945401) Attached to: U2 and Apple Collaborate On 'Non-Piratable, Interactive Format For Music'

The only way I can see something like that working is a robust audio watermark containing the purchasers iTunes information.

Apple also sells music in its lossless format, and there it's hard to get "robust" without annoying the listener. If the watermark is in the metadata, one can simply convert the file to WAV to strip the watermark out and re-encode. If it is in the audio itself, it can lead to complaints: when Universal began offering lossless tracks, it encoded a watermark in the audio that manifested as an annoying buzzing noise, and eventually after much complaint it thankfully stopped doing that.

Comment: Re:Expert. (Score 2) 187

by CRCulver (#47945341) Attached to: U2 and Apple Collaborate On 'Non-Piratable, Interactive Format For Music'

Um, no, he's much, much less an expert than Dre is. As a respected producer at least Dre has some validity as a good ear, and he can evaluate the results of different parametric curves on tone signature

Dr Dre the "producer" is essentially just an older peer that new acts can ask for advice and a respected name to put advertising. Usually in cases like this where an over-the-hill artist "produces" a younger one, it is in fact the much less celebrated engineer who is doing all the fine-tuning of the sound. The "producer" can only say "I like that" or "I don't like that" to what the engineer presents.

Comment: Re:I'm not surprised (Score 1) 89

by hairyfeet (#47945191) Attached to: Canon Printer Hacked To Run <em>Doom</em> Video Game

Well to be fair to the SWAT they were told they had a hostage situation and having friends that are ex-cops I can tell you those calls are the ones they always feared because one wrong move and you have to explain to somebody why their wife or kid is in a body bag, so they naturally are gonna go heavy when you have hostages. the fact that there are so many absolute douchebags on this earth that "SWATting" could actually become a word? Just shows why you have to assume asshattery anymore when it comes to anything and everything, too many wastes of space on this planet.

And the simple fact that long term Linux professionals, the kind that write articles for major sites and are called on for expert Linux advice actually suggest that having a separate home partition and blowing away the whole OS, including programs and settings, every year and a half is a "viable solution" just shows why I call 'em FOSSies, because like Moonies and Scientologists there is a serious fucking disconnect between what they consider normal and reality! I mean can you imagine me selling customers a PC and telling them they are gonna have to blow away their OS every year and a half and that they only have X number of months before they have to wipe and start over? I'd be out of business before the year was out! But that just shows how cult like their thinking has become, because Torvalds has made it clear as long as he has a pulse the whole "stick it all in the kernel" bullshit is NEVER gonna go away so instead of going "Welp that's fucked up, lets go somewhere else" they cook up these elaborate workarounds just to give them a bare semblance of what Windows and OSX have had for the better part of a decade!

Finally as for WinME...wanna know what killed WinME? The douchebag at MSFT who said that WinME could run VXD drivers. If you had a WinME system with ONLY WDM drivers? It was solid as a rock, in fact I had a customer who didn't retire his WinME system until it died in 2009 because it worked perfectly all that time. But Lord have mercy if you mixed WDM and VXD as loading both made WinME an unstable mess of an OS, but I'd rather be trapped on a system that had only WinME and Win 8 in a dual boot than deal with Linux as like you I have better things to do than spend my time trying to fix Torvalds' fuckups.

+ - Inside Shenzen's Grey-Market iPhone Mall->

Submitted by jfruh
jfruh (300774) writes "Despite being largely manufactured in China, iPhones are still too expensive for most Chinese to afford — new ones, anyway. That's why thousands come to a bustling marketplace in Shenzen that specializes in older grey-market iPhones. Many of them are damaged phones that have been refurbished by enterprising merchants."
Link to Original Source

+ - Netropolitan Is A Facebook For The Affluent, And It's Only $9000 To Join->

Submitted by MojoKid
MojoKid (1002251) writes "Facebook has become too crowded and too mundane. With around 1.3 billion Facebook users, it's understandable to be overwhelmed by everything and want to get away from it all. However, unlike Facebook which is looking to connect everyone to the internet, there is a new site called Netropolitan that focuses more on exclusivity and privacy. The site was founded by composer and former conductor of the Minnesota Philharmonic Orchestra James Touchi-Peters who wanted to provide a social media site for affluent and accomplished individuals. People wishing to join need only pay a mere $9,000 to join. Of that amount, $6,000 is the initiation fee and the remaining $3,000 is for the annual membership fee which users will continue to pay. So what does the initiation and annual fee get you? For starters, Netropolitan will offer an ad-free experience and will not promote any kind of paid promotions to its members. However, it will allow the creation of groups by businesses in which members can advertise to each other under certain guidelines. $9K just to join? There must be another hook..."
Link to Original Source

+ - The myths (and realities) of synthetic bioweapons->

Submitted by Lasrick
Lasrick (2629253) writes "Three researchers from King's College, London, walk through the security threats posed by synthetic and do-it-yourself biology, assessing whether changes in technology and associated costs make it any easier for would-be terrorists to pursue biological weapons for high-consequence, mass- casualty attacks (and even whether they would want to). 'Those who have overemphasized the bioterrorism threat typically portray it as an imminent concern, with emphasis placed on high-consequence, mass-casualty attacks, performed with weapons of mass destruction (WMD). This is a myth with two dimensions.'"
Link to Original Source

Comment: Re:"forced labor" (Score 1) 182

by Opportunist (#47943015) Attached to: Use of Forced Labor "Systemic" In Malaysian IT Manufacturing

I'm advocating social peace.

Sorry, I don't believe in compassion and charity. Never worked, never will. Aside of stripping needy people of their last remaining dignity, it's also something you simply cannot rely on once time get rougher, i.e. exactly when those in need feel it the most.

That the supply side can fix problems is a myth. Sorry. It cannot. Mostly because there is no incentive. The economy is in the slumps because the demand is missing. And that in turn is something you can only fix if people HAVE TO spend when the economy would make it more appealing to refrain from doing so, i.e. exactly when the economy would need you to spend to keep it running.

Now, whether people spend money depends mostly on two factors: First, whether they want to. And second, whether they have the means to. You might notice that the economy actually kept going for a while even after the steam was off. That's because people still had money to spend. The recession came when this was over, when people could no longer spend because they had nothing left.

Our whole economy in the west is very heavily dependent on services. Services otoh are also the first thing people cut back on when money gets tight. What's higher on your priority list: Haircut or food?

There is a very easy reason why countries with traditionally "socialist" systems were hit far less heavily by the recession. Mostly because even poor people still have money to spend.

Comment: Re:Obama is but a puppet (Score 5, Interesting) 190

by hairyfeet (#47942981) Attached to: Apple's "Warrant Canary" Has Died
I simply think they know what is coming, we are about to hit (if we haven't already) the singularity, that moment in history where the world is completely changed forever, like the invention of the engine and the airplane but the coming one? Its NOT gonna be nice if the "Ayn Randiates" in the halls of power have their way.

So what is the new singularity? Simple its the day when human labor is no longer needed to maintain and advance the world. Its the day when everything from picking beans to paving roads can all be done by machines that never get paid, never ask for days off, its the corporate idea of heaven!Its the dark reality of John Henry, that no matter how hard you work, even if you work yourself to death, the machine will just keep on working and will run you down without a bit of remorse.

When that day comes there is really only 3 paths, one of which we partially do now which is 1.- "make work" where you pay somebody for doing a pointless "job". We do that now at fast food joints, if you raised the minimum wage to a living wage and quit letting the corps hand out "how to get government handout" videos to new employees? You'd find within a year all the fast food workers replaced with an automated system that not only wouldn't get paid but would probably have a better track record than the underpaid overworked employees do know when it comes to getting orders correct.

The second option would be the "Star Trek Socialist paradise" which would be the most humane of the three, basically give everyone a basic wage and let them do what they will with their free time while giving extra benefits and credits to those that choose to "serve the greater good" by devoting themselves to science and medical research. It sounds now but sadly too many greedy bastards at the top would rather burn the forest down than share the trees which brings us to #3 which is what I think all the 3 letter agencies are ramping up for..

A fascist dictatorship where the elite rule with an iron boot using fear and violence where those at the top commit systematic genocide by forcing the "useless people" to live in ever worsening squalor, probably while claiming they are just "lazy" because they can't compete with the Asian slaves building our electronics. You would need the 3 letter agencies for several jobs in such a shift, to inspire fear and paranoia, to monitor and allow you to remove anybody that could possibly lead the peasants in an uprising, and to get enough dirt on those with weaker stomachs to insure they "get with the program".

Considering how much we have been seeing the mask fall off when it comes to those in power, how they just ignore any and all promises without fear of punishment and how many in power seem to get almost sadistic glee at the thought of stomping on the poor? Sadly I have a feeling its gonna be the third option. They'll use a major false flag to excuse "extraordinary measures" that will simply never end and get worse...war on terror anyone?

At the source of every error which is blamed on the computer you will find at least two human errors, including the error of blaming it on the computer.

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