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Comment Re:Batteries just don't store enough energy... (Score 2) 237

Interesting idea. I wonder, at least for a relatively short hop, how the energy costs factor between the stages of a flight. I mean, taxing over to the runway or back to the terminal is probably not very much. You could actually be recovering energy during a landing.

So how much fuel is used during takeoff vs gaining cruise altitude?

How much energy could you save if you, say, had a plane with electric engines and you launched it using a catapult/cable/power line that provided all energy needed for the engines until it hits 1k or so feet in altitude?

That's before you get into crazy thoughts like ground-based wireless energy transmission by laser or microwave.

Comment Re: This is why we can't have nice things (Score 1) 213

That's why private property is a good idea. If the natives owned the property (the last monarch's corruption makes it worth a separate argument) , they'd probably want the rent. Or at least the builders would have known ahead of time that building the telescope was not worth their time. If the scientists owned the property then it would have just been built already. The idea of "public property" is what leads to these sorts of conflicts; low - IQ politicians are a far worse way to decide issues then rationally-enforced market discipline.

Comment Re:Huh? (Score 1) 242

Hating on the people making the calls is wrong...

Hating on people working for legit companies operating within the law is a bit much. But hating on that asshole with "windows support" who knows good and damned well he's trying to infect your machine with malware in order to extort you, well not hating that jerk would be ridiculous.

Comment Re:More interesting is Age Adjusted Funds (Score 1) 71

I've been using the same strategy for 20 years now based off Harry Browne's Failsafe Investing. 25% each in S&P 500, Cash (FDIC Money Market), 25-30 year Treasury Bonds, Gold Bullion Coin (Eagles). Every year rebalance if any one goes +/- 10%. New additions go to cash.

That's it. Very simple, good long term returns 10% and low volatility. Even 2008 was a small gain.

Comment Gold Standard, Liberty Rating (Score 1) 436

One of the most successful things that Free-Staters and local NH libertarians have done is to produce the Gold Standard a voting guide that is handed out every week to every member of the NH House and Senate, before floor votes. To produce the doc, a small army of volunteers reads and grades all the incoming legislation according to a standardized scale. The most important pro- or anti-liberty legislation is debated on a private list, and once we have solid bullet-points to clarify our position, we produce the doc. We then grade the legislators on their votes, and produce an annual legislative report card. We are the only group, other than the (R) and (D) parties, to produce a consistent voting recommendation for years on end. At first lots of legislators ignored us. Then we started targeting the lowest-ranked legislators in elections, and got some of the worst eliminated; and donated money to the best rated. Now some hate us, but all respect us.

Comment Re:Why? (Score 1) 436

Glen Aldrich is a carpenter with no more than a high school diploma.

I think having regular citizen legislators, with not much financial gain to be had from the job, is an excellent way to run a state house. It means you are more likely to get people involved for the right reasons, instead of career politicians looking for money and power.

I concur, and note that the first Free-Stater elected to the NH House was also a carpenter (technically, a contractor). Here's his victory speech; it's quite telling.

Comment Re:Why? (Score 1) 436

And I personally believe that they should spend as much time reviewing old laws for relevance, modification and possible repeal as they do making new ones.

So do I, but not even full-time legislatures do that.

Actually up until 2 years ago, NH had a standing House Committee whose whole purpose was to find unconstitutional laws, and submit them for elimination or alteration to be Constitutional. That changed when the Speaker of the House changed. But another nifty thing about NH: the entire government, from Governor to lowly State Rep, is up for re-election each and every 2 years :)

Comment Full Circle (Score 1) 436

I first heard about the Free State Project from a slashdot story in October 2003, when they announced that New Hampshire was the target state. At the time I was on a 1-year work contract in Australia, and all I knew was that when I returned to the USA, I did not want to return to the high taxes, high population density and (comparatively) bad air quality of the Bay Area. As a libertarian myself, it was a no-brainer, especially after I read the "101 Reasons to choose New Hampshire" document (which has subsequently been turned into a video documentary). So I went back to California just long enough to make arrangements. I moved to NH in June 2005, making me mover #107.

In the time I have been here, some 1,900 other "early movers" have also come. We have gone from electing a few Free-Staters to local city councils and planning boards, to our first State Representative, to now having some two dozen Free-Stater State Reps, and having pulled many of the existing State Reps and Senators (especially the Republican ones) in a much more libertarian direction. I will never forget the ex-Marine State Rep who in 2006 told me he would "never, ever in his life" allow "legal dope", to that same Rep now voting for full marijuana legalization every single time it comes up. We were the first state to pass same-sex marriage via a legislative process (not popular referendum). We passed medical marijuana. We have no adult seat belt law, no helmet law, open carry and shall-issue concealed carry (and are likely to pass constitutional carry next session). We have eliminated all state knife laws, absolutely rejected Real-ID ("and any de-facto national identity system that may follow therefrom"), forbidden the State to use automated license plate scanners, and passed a law affirming a defendant's right to explain Nullification to the jury.

We don't need all 20,000 to show up. Another 4-5K people, if they do the same things as the first 2K, and NH will bear very little resemblance to the police-states/welfare-states of the rest of the USA... and much more resemblance to the society described in the New Hampshire Constitution, which is summed up well by Article 10:

Government being instituted for the common benefit, protection, and security, of the whole community, and not for the private interest or emolument of any one man, family, or class of men; therefore, whenever the ends of government are perverted, and public liberty manifestly endangered, and all other means of redress are ineffectual, the people may, and of right ought to reform the old, or establish a new government. The doctrine of nonresistance against arbitrary power, and oppression, is absurd, slavish, and destructive of the good and happiness of mankind.

Comment Re:sunfire / in my stellerator / makes me... happy (Score 1) 98

The Wendelstein was only built to investigate how well stellarators can confine plasma over a long period of time. No fusion will actually happen in this facility.

Incorrect. The Wendelstein will reach pressures and temperatures necessary for fusion. Fusion will occur in it unless something seriously goes wrong. What won't happen is electricity generation.

You are correct on the 50 years though - the director of the Wendelstein mentioned that there will need to be another generation of test systems before power generation will be able to be seriously considered.

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