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Comment: Re:Meanwhile, people are bailing from the IPCC (Score 1) 987

by J Story (#46626199) Attached to: UN Report: Climate Changes Overwhelming

I think you inadvertently demonstrate my point.

If we look at the US as the touchstone of honest dealing, then the game is already rigged. The US rated 73 in the 2013 Corruption Perceptions Index, placing 19th, and was behind Canada (9th at a CPI of 81) and Denmark (1st at a CPI of 91). It gets worse, however. The median CPI for the 175 countries listed was 38, held by Bukina Faso, Jamaica, Liberia and Zambia, among others. Half of the countries rated even worse, with Afghanistan, North Korea and Somalia at the bottom with a CPI of only 8. Here's the thing: how can we expect the UN to be free of corruption when it is populated by countries where corruption is endemic?

It is easy to think that the IPCC is aboveboard because "science", but there are reports that the IPCC deliberately excluded input from climate scientists who did not follow the IPCC's narrative. That is not science, but corrupt practice. In the West, it is commonplace for committee reports, court rulings and the like, to include dissenting views, as a matter of transparency. The IPCC clothes itself in the garments of undeniable truth, but underneath is putrid corruption.

Comment: Re:Meanwhile, people are bailing from the IPCC (Score -1, Troll) 987

by J Story (#46624645) Attached to: UN Report: Climate Changes Overwhelming

Meanwhile, after you read past the end-of-the-world predictions that were likely lifted directly from one of those churches that makes a living predicting the End Times, here's a more realistic assessment from a real economist who told the IPCC to remove his name from their "summary":

People here tend to forget that the UN is filled to the brim with corruption. That their human rights body is chaired by countries with the worst human rights records -- and worse, that this is allowed to continue -- demonstrates why everything that comes out of the UN should be looked at with the greatest scepticism.

Comment: Re:Transaction Fees Change (Score 1) 301

by J Story (#46572291) Attached to: Researchers Find Problems With Rules of Bitcoin

The fee is actually a market-driven value, essentially a distributed real-time auction. Those who perform transactions bid for the services of the miners who generate the blocks to record the transactions. You're free to place any bid you want, but if there are higher bids available the miners will take those instead, so your transaction could fail to ever complete.

I'm not sure I understand this. If "Joe" initiates a transaction with a very low fee, and no miner chooses to incorporate that transaction, is there any way for Joe to void the transaction and re-initiate it with a higher fee? If not, it seems to me that there is a danger that transactions may end up in no-man's land, with the bitcoins being "spent" from the purchaser's point of view, but with nothing showing up at the seller's end. In effect, money is lost. This looks to be a serious problem.

Comment: Re:There is a goose to that gander (Score 1) 295

by J Story (#46498781) Attached to: Federal Student Aid Requirements At For-Profit Colleges Overhauled

If they are going to do that, then the same standard should applies to our public school system. My federal tax dollars are federal tax dollars and that does not change regardless who gets my federal tax dollars.

I agree. The problem, however, is that it's much harder to connect the dots between, say, an elementary school's teaching performance, and outcomes ten years later. That is not to say that the attempt should not be made.

Comment: Re: And in other news... (Score 1) 506

by J Story (#46360251) Attached to: Quebec Language Police Target Store Owner's Facebook Page

Meanwhile, in other parts of Canada, people come here and talk Tagalog (Philippines), Chinese, Korean, Hindi, Farsi, German, Ukranian, Polish, Spanish, Cree, Blackfoot, even English. We try to accommodate people and welcome new people. I personally love Thai, Vietnamese and Mexican food. If a Chinese restaurant wants a big sign in Chinese, I welcome the big Chinese sign. Poor Quebec: Insular, Inbred. Under the impish belief that their culture is superior to all others, they are stupid enough to try and enforce it by law. Others are cosmopolitan. They are insular, unrefined, parochial. Perhaps they don't even realise how stupid they look to the rest of the world.

And to throw Canadian politics into this discussion, Justin Trudeau, leader of the Liberal Party and potentially the next Prime Minister of Canada, holds up Quebec values as a beacon to the rest of Canada. Something tells me this will not end well.

Comment: Re:The Numbers Lie. (Score 0) 846

by J Story (#46017981) Attached to: Global-Warming Skepticism Hits 6-Year High

Long term trends in the Earth History show that we will get really hot and we will get really cold. Ice ages come and go. The climate changes drastically as a normal part of the process.

I don't think this point gets the consideration it deserves. Manmade Global Warming believers, like King Canute, put an unwarranted faith in their ability to effect change. It did not take long for Canute to realize his folly, and the cost was only to his pride. For warmists, however, indulging their vanity costs jobs and lives.

Comment: Re:Science doesn't work on consensus (Score 1) 517

by J Story (#45943061) Attached to: How Weather Influences Global Warming Opinions

Well the data we have certainly seems to indicate that climate change is real so I'm not entirely sure what level of proof you are looking for.

So what data would be persuasive in showing that manmade global warming is *not* happening as modelled? If it isn't falsifiable, it isn't science.

Let's say there is 50% chance that climate change is real and that if it is real the consequences of it are that the planet no longer becomes compatible with human life. Is that a risk you are willing to take or do you think we should act on the risk knowing we might be wrong but playing it safe? Basically you are doing an expected value analysis.

This is a dangerous argument. If we don't know how climate works, then how do we know that actions we proactively take will not only do no good, but may do real harm? The fact that predictive models of AGW proponents have failed shows these proponents do not understand how climate works. Following their prescriptions, therefore, makes as much sense as asking a five-year-old for career advice.

Comment: Re: In the middle of summer (Score 3, Informative) 382

by J Story (#45873367) Attached to: US Coast Guard Ship To Attempt Rescue of 2 Icebreakers In Antarctica

Von Storch concisely summarizes the dilemma of global warming proponents, as well as the frustration of sceptics. In particular: "It [science] is not just writing a computer simulation and then, when the predictions are wrong, tinkering the parameters (adding more "ocean temperature damping" in this case), and hoping that eventually your program will converge on the truth."

Comment: Re: In the middle of summer (Score 3, Insightful) 382

by J Story (#45873319) Attached to: US Coast Guard Ship To Attempt Rescue of 2 Icebreakers In Antarctica

Do you have some other explanation for the observed warming that I haven't heard of?

The point being debated is that this "observed warming" is actually occurring. As for "other explanation", isn't that what models are supposed to provide?

It seems to me that the most persuasive climate models would be those that account for temperature patterns from prehistoric records all the way to today. Anything less can only be based on an incomplete understanding. Unfortunately, the livelihood of manmade global warming scientists depends on manmade global warming actually existing. For a researcher thus employed to admit that the evidence is untenable not only jeopardises his career, but those of thousands of fellow researchers as well. Given *this* reality, if I were a climate change scientist I would never put my name on a study that promoted a contrarian view.

Comment: Re:me too... (Score 1) 475

by J Story (#45728553) Attached to: Bitcoin Exchange Value Halves After Chinese Ban

after I picked myself up off the floor and composed myself a bit, I still laughed to myself at how fast the BTC bubble burst

"Burst" does not really describe the phenomenon. Before the run-up in value, some weeks ago, 1 BTC was trading at around $100. Now that the value has "collapsed", it is trading at around $600.

Comment: A marketing dud (Score 1) 226

by J Story (#45666069) Attached to: Canada Post Announces the End of Urban Home Delivery

In marketing, there are well-known positioning areas:

  • "more (goods/services) for more (money)" -- i.e. a premium service
  • "more for the same" and "more for less"
  • "the same for less"
  • "less for (a lot) less

Non-starters are "the same for the same" and "the same for more", because these give customers no added value to their existing service. However, Canada Post has gone even farther by proposing "less for more", which can only work when there are no other options available. By offering less service, and charging more for it, Canada Post is *guaranteeing* that customers will seek other options where they are available. And in the age of the Internet, other options are available.

On the bright side, the Green Party must be pretty pleased. Canada Post's brilliant marketing strategy will save trees by causing snail mail usage not only to continue shrinking, but to plummet.

Comment: Re:Model fails to account for magic and Valar (Score 2) 163

by J Story (#45629793) Attached to: The Climate of Middle-Earth

I bring this point up with my fantasy writing friends. Just because your world *has* miraculous things in it doesn't mean *everything* should be a miracle. People should have common-sense responses to miraculous things.

Today, as far as the layman's understanding goes, we *are* living in a world with magic. I hear "electricity", and have a vague idea of the relationship between electricity and magnetism (another magical force), but my understanding only goes so deep. However, I flip a switch, expecting light, and it magically appears. How is this different from the hero in a fantasy novel who uses his magic wand to light his way? Neither of us is filled with a sense of awe, because it's something we use every day. We just say "electricity" instead of "magic flux".

When I first learned of Clarke's axiom, "Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.", I was thinking about some far-off future, but I have come to realize that a lot of technology is, for many, advanced enough *today* that it might as well be magic.

Comment: Re:Nothing Fun At All (Score 3, Insightful) 46

by J Story (#45629569) Attached to: DARPA Makes Finding Software Flaws Fun

If you've tried playing any of those "games" then you'd know they are not fun at all. Just a big fail.

I agree that the one "game" I played didn't keep me enthralled once the novelty wore off, but it seems to me that there is the *seed* of something that could be fun, for given definitions of "fun". For example, suppose that these games were games-within-a-game, which one could play to win points or "gold" to use in the larger game. Consider it a form of grinding.

"The most important thing in a man is not what he knows, but what he is." -- Narciso Yepes