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Comment Re:Fat Cats in the Countryside (Score 1) 124

If you don't know the market price, how can you not believe me?

I don't need to know the exact number of stars in the universe to know for sure that you don't know the exact number of stars in the universe.

This is simple. "Market price" is unknowable outside of a "free market" and a free market has never existed in human history. How can you say you are willing to pay a price that you cannot possibly know?

Comment Re:Centurylink Service (Score 1) 124

but other than that there are no downsides.

Texas ranks in or near the bottom 20% in the nation in education and access to health care, and its poverty level puts in 46th (out of 50), in between Arkansas and Alabama. It has the highest uninsured rate in the nation. It leads all other states in the number of executions of innocent people. Texas has the highest percentage of children who don't have any access to health care.

  http://educationblog.dallasnew...

http://www.texasobserver.org/t...

http://dfw.cbslocal.com/2013/0...

http://watchdogblog.dallasnews...

http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/...

Among Texas' other poor rankings are 50th for the EPA's toxic exposure score, 47th for total toxic chemicals released into waterways, 46th for cancer-causing chemicals released, 45th for developmental toxins released, and 49th for reproductive toxins released. So, when you say "diverse ecosystems" I assume you mean there are some places you can live and get cancer and some places you just cannot live.

Texas ranks 50th (out of 50) for greenhouse emissions.

In summary, poverty, poorly educated people, sick kids and an environment disaster not to mention the climate that you mention putting Texas near the bottom of the comfort index rankings do not add up to Texas being a "nice place to live". The highly-touted "Texas Miracle" is a lie.

And here are some unretouched photos of people Texas has elected governor:

http://cdn2-b.examiner.com/sit...

http://www.highwaygirl.com/hwg...

And the current governor believes a U.S. military exercise in the region is really an all-out invasion by Obama and the US government to take over Texas. Or, he just says that to pander to his pig-ignorant electorate.

I'm sorry friend, but Texas is a shit-hole. My thoughts and prayers go out to everyone who lives there. In Jesus' name.

Comment Re:Fat Cats in the Countryside (Score 1) 124

I don't understand, please help me. We are receiving subsidies, while at the same time paying for subsidies?

Yes. We all pay for the subsidies, but not everyone uses goods and services to the same extent. Think of it like health insurance. I've paid for health insurance all my adult life (more than 30 years) and have barely used it. So, I'm paying to subsidize people who need those services. It evens out the costs, so that someone who needs a heart transplant can get one and I'm partly paying for it even though I don't need a heart transplant.

It is best seen in universal, single payer health care, where the actual price of services gets evened out the most.

I barely put 1500 miles a year on my car, but I pay for interstate roads and potholes getting fixed and bridges getting built like everyone else.

BTW, you said that you don't believe that I am willing to pay the market price, when I stated that I am. That is calling me a liar.

No, I'm not calling you a liar. I'm saying you don't know the market price, so you're unable to make the statement true. You're not trying to deceive anyone but yourself, so you're not a liar. Just lacking the facts to make your statement true.

Comment Re:Fat Cats in the Countryside (Score 1) 124

Firstly, effectively calling me a liar marks you as a cad.

I'm not calling you a liar (or at least not an "effective" one). I'm saying you don't have a clue as to what the "market price" of anything would be.

Secondly, you assert that pretty much everything I consume is heavily subsidized. To the point where I am getting a heck of a deal, receiving goods and services that exceed in value and cost what I pay for them. As I am an average joe, most of the country must be getting the same benefit. My question is, where the hell is all the money coming from to pay the difference?

From all of us, of course. The part you don't seem to get is that without subsidies, there would be a lot of the stuff you want and need that would be completely out of your price range. How much would you be willing to pay for a medication that would save your life? Or your wife's life? Or your kid's? Would you mortgage the house? Of course you would. If your wife was dying of cancer and an operation or treatment would give her an additional few years, would you pay a million dollars? Five million? Well, we've just set the demand half of the equation.

Subsidies perform a function people don't want to talk about: they make a wide basket of necessities available to a lot of people. It evens things out a little bit. And that's good because living in a society where some people have a lot and most people have very little is not very pleasant, even if you are one of the "haves". I've been to such countries and they are not good places to live.

UNLESS the subsidies are distributed by a government corrupted by corporate power and wealth. Which they are in the US. In that case, they have the opposite effect, which is why we need to have strict campaign finance laws and overturn Citizens United.

Comment Re:This is why (Score 2) 124

- If I could get decent internet (at a decent price) I could work from the ranch, sell off the California townhouse, and live for a year on less than it costs to live in CA for a month. (Or retire and live comfortably on my savings, investments, and Social Security - which would crap out in a few years on the Soviet Left Coast.)

Man complaining about "the Soviet Left Coast" plans to retire comfortably collecting Social Security, using Medicare and sucking off the government teat.

Not shocked.

Comment Re:This is important news how? (Score 1) 124

Rural phone subsidies have been around forever. They recently got expanded to broadband. We're all taxed (technically "fees") on our phone bills (and soon internet I believe) to pay for this stuff.

There are techbro libertarians around here who are still pissed that the federal government built the interstate highway system so that moochers can drive their cars across the country. So don't be surprised about this being late Sunday night Slashdot front page fodder.

Comment Re:Fat Cats in the Countryside (Score 1) 124

I am willing to pay the market price.

I don't believe you are. You don't pay the market price for food, gas for your car, electricity, the mortgage on your house, health care, education. I don't know what you think the "market price" for something is, but you're not paying it for anything important in your life except maybe if you have to hire a lawyer, and everybody who hires a lawyer thinks they're getting raped.

I'm not at all sure that if you saw the "market" price for things you'd be very happy about it.

There has never been a free market. Not once, ever, for anything. They don't exist in nature and can not exist in societies.

Comment RIP Oliver Sacks (Score 4, Informative) 20

I mistook my sock for a wife once.

Seriously though, the dude wrote some great stuff on human perception of music and the brain's processing of musical information.

http://www.oliversacks.com/boo...

Plus, he was kind of a badass:

https://rhystranter.files.word...

http://media.jrn.com/images/b9...

It's sad when one of these bright lights goes out.

Comment Re:Why autonomous cars? (Score 2) 171

Why do we need autonomous elevators? Why are we putting elevator operators out of work?

You make a good point. The first building I worked in out of college had an elevator operator and he was a cool old dude. Extremely helpful, and much much much more useful than the new digital building directory systems in place today. He could not only tell you which floor and suite you wanted, but he'd give helpful tips on the way up like, "his secretary seems nasty, but if you ask her about her kids in the photo on her desk, she'll be really nice and even bring you coffee while you're waiting for your appointment". For those in the know, he was also a horse-player and would give very good tips in races at Arlington Park. More than once he told me, "A sharp lad might want to put $10 on Lightning Switch in the 7th race today." One time he even gave me the 1-2-3 combination in the trifecta and made me over $300 bucks, which to a barely-paid mail-room boy was a lot of scratch. Let's see some Siri-fied automated building directory system do that. He would also make sure that if you were hustling to the elevator carrying boxes, he'd wait until you caught up. There were several banks of elevators in that building, all with elevator operators, and I'd use his every single time.

Hell yes we need to have elevator operators again.

Comment Re:Any shortage of suicide bombers? (Score 1) 171

I don't see how this is a worst threat than the current situation provided there plenty suicide bombers available.

Because brainwashing a suicide bomber takes time and effort and he can only be used once. And during that time and effort, there are lots of fail points and exposure to the authorities finding out about the suicide bomber. An individual hacking an AV to direct an attack doesn't require very much in the way of infrastructure or organization or time or effort beyond what is already in place. And the exploit (and it can hardly even be considered an exploit, since it's basically using an autonomous vehicle for what it was meant to do, which is go from location A to B). A suicide bomber requires an organization. The attack described in the article does not.

Comment Why autonomous cars? (Score 1) 171

I don't mean to pee in the swimming pool here, but why again exactly do we need autonomous cars, and what's the rush? Have we run out of humans to drive cars? Are there not enough vehicles on the road? Is there full employment to the point where we need robots to drive commercial vehicles because there aren't enough drivers? And don't tell me, "it will be safer" because as long as there are human-driven vehicles sharing the road, it won't be one bit safer to have autonomous vehicles in the mix.

Every time I see a AV story here on Slashdot, I get the feeling someone is pushing an agenda. I mean, I don't give a shit one way or the other, but it really seems as though this one example of someone thinking about the possible negative ramifications of autonomous vehicles seems to make a certain group of slashdot readers really mad.

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