Follow Slashdot stories on Twitter


Forgot your password?

Comment Re:Deconstructing diversity in tech (Score 1) 687

In 1980 there were as much men than women in universities. Now, after countless reforms to make schools and universities more appealing to girls, there's 50% more women than men. But this is ignored. Men's need are ignored, only women matter.

Yep, its a genuine problem. But its not the only problem. And its sort of inevitable. Imagine a world where there was only mens clothing.and women had to wear it despite the poor fit. Then one day we realized that was wrong, and we started adding women's clothing. Suddenly there's clothing that's comfortable for women all over the shelves and its a poor fit for you. And when you go shopping there's less clothing available to you, because some of the shelf space that used to be for men is now not. (There's only finite shelf space after all... ) So you moan about how nobody cares about you, and every week there's less selection for you. Things have gotten worse for you. Its not your imagination. Every gain they make is at your expense. This "change" is an inevitable part of becoming equals. But your counting down from 100% shelf space. Your fear is that we've traded places, that women are now on top, and men are the disadvantaged bottom; and that nobodies noticed yet. But that's not the case, you've just lost 35% of your shelf space. That's sort of where the world is right now, we're changing to accommodate them, and the mechanisms in use are blunt ugly; often ineffective, and grossly unfair. (And I agree we're doing it WRONG.) But at the end of the day, by practically all measures, we're still on top. Comfortably. We haven't traded places. I DONT support these stupid feminist programs that are crude, ineffective, and unfair. But at the same time I do recognize that changes are necessary.

I do not understand this view at all. Wait 15 years and this problem will fix itself. It takes time for change to filter through the generations. For instance, white people will become a minority in 2043. It's going to happen, with or without programs encouraging more minority babies. We can see that based on existing data. Women are dominating college now -- that means that they have every opportunity to go as high as they'd like to, with or without additional programs forcing their acceptance into specific careers/positions.

In fact, the share of female CEOs of Fortune 500 companies has more than doubled in the past five years (from ~2% to more than 4%). The reason it's not higher now is likely because the people at the very top are also the oldest people in the organization. Namely, there's still a large segment of the upper crust of the working class that's from the last generation of women who were family-focused instead of career-focused. Although it's changing, Gen X and Boomers still dominate the workforce (, and most Millenials are still in the early stages of their career. You don't get to be the heads of the largest companies overnight. When I hear these complaints that bitch about the lack of equal results vs equal opportunity, I roll my eyes. The writing is on the wall, but they want it now. It's unreasonable to expect drastic workforce demographic changes overnight.

Men have every right to be upset, because the future of younger male Millennials is potentially being robbed because of imbalances exhibited in Gen X/Boomers big picture demographics. By stacking the deck at the bottom (college/opportunities/etc) in favor of women, all they're doing is strangling the future of young males today. 30 or 40 years from now the ratio could very well be 70-30 in favor of women, and all you accomplished was torpedoing the chances/dreams of a generation of men. No one deserves special privileges. It should be a level playing field, with everyone given the same opportunities to succeed. If THAT is broken, fix it. But if equal opportunity is already there, men of this generation should not be intentionally disadvantaged merely because of existing demographics in the workforce or because generational change takes a long time.

Comment Re:Wow (Score 1) 327

I don't think Solar could have gotten the critical mass without the incentives. Even with incentives, it took several decades to be a meaningful contributor

And you're basing this on what? The government offers incentives for lots of things that haven't gained traction (geothermal comes to mind). There's literally no metric to relate/tie one dollar of incentive to one dollar of influence. And I've seen no study showing a causation effect. Or even a correlation effect. The government yanked a ton of money out of the space industry, and private industry has reacted with enormous strides forward in innovation (e.g. SpaceX). The government dumped tons of innovation dollars into the military complex (continues to every year in fact...), and I don't exactly see us getting bang-for-buck there from an innovation standpoint.

It general, it seems to me that greedy humans in industry do a fantastic job of pursuing innovations that could make them a fortune and/or solves some societal need, whether the government intervenes or not. We've always had a need for cheaper energy (with energy costs rising every year), and the idea that inventors would somehow ignore it without the government giving them money is silly.

Quite honestly, the R&D incentive money is best spent on the challenge that follows, not the first-mover challenge: energy storage

Now there's the rub. And the big elephant in the room that has been holding up solar for decades (and will continue to hold up solar for some time). It's the problem that should have been solved first. The rest would have followed through natural progression.

Granted, not all $$ are spent with the same efficacy. That is the nature of R&D though.

Except that in reality, when the government offers dollars for vague things (ala R&D), it typically results in waste. Because everyone is willing to offer a bunch of wacky ideas in exchange for a million dollar check with no strings attached. When it's their money, on the other hand, they tend to put a bit more thought into it.

Comment Re:Those outside of Greece will have an impact (Score 1) 359

What is unusual about Greece is that the GDP per capita has fallen for the past 6 years, under the fiscal policies imposed by the IMF.

That's one hell of an assumption -- if you're claiming their policies are the reason Greece is suffering such a fate, why didn't all the other countries that had to implement similar policies to receive loan backstops also go in the tank?

Comment Re:Very Disturbing Trend (Score 1) 1083

how does life, liberty or property equal marriage? not just gay marriage. Marriage for anyone?

The liberty to marry.

And what about the liberty to drink and drive? Or the liberty to gamble as a teenager? Or the liberty to build a giant blockade in the middle of a major freeway? There is literally nothing in your hand waving statement there that would prevent this ruling from invalidating all state laws and devolving us to anarchy. And it's because you're interpreting the Constitution wrong. The "liberty" clause doesn't mean the Constitution grants you the right to whatever the hell you want. It means the govt can't lock you up and throw away the key without cause. This was a poor judicial decision -- marriage is not a fundamental right of the Constitution and the only reason this was passed was because of a previous bad decision in Loving. Precedent is a dangerous thing was an early decision was the wrong one.

Comment Re:Very Disturbing Trend (Score 1) 1083

Nope. Still wrong. If something is a "right" then how can a state government (or a city government) declare that it is NOT a right? Even if the majority in that state/city says so? Your Rights are not subject to majority approval.

Except they are. And that's why you can't own a cruise missile. And why you can't drink and drive. If marriage was enumerated as a fundamental right in the Constitution, it would be a different conversation, but it isn't. Which means the States have every right to pass law on the issue.

Comment Re:Very Disturbing Trend (Score 1) 1083

You might learn that our Constitution was written to LIMIT the powers of our GOVERNMENT. It was NOT written as a list of the "fundamental rights" of the citizens. You have it BACKWARDS. The citizens grant the government certain rights. NOT the government granting the citizens certain rights (such as who can marry whom).

You're very confused. The Constitution is a check on federal power. The _federal_ powers are supposed to be limited (leaving whatever remains to the States, and then the people). If this wasn't true, anarchy would be the result. The manner in which the 14th is currently being applied would make all manner of things illegal: why aren't rich people entitled to Welfare? Why can't childless people get child tax credits? The Equal Protection clause is meant to ensure the same laws apply to everyone, nothing more. So no matter who you are, you're entitled to Welfare if you meet the criteria. And you're entitled to child tax credits, if you meet the criteria. There was no law on the books, federal or otherwise, granting carte blanche marriage. Marriage is not an enumerated Constitutional right. It's cut and dry. It was the wrong decision. And so was Love.

Comment Re:Does it matter? (Score 1) 310

It would be really, really bizarre if the deniers are right, as they simply can not explain the warming. They have no models, no data, nothing. If they are right, water stopped behaving as we've known it to for centuries, right about the time of the industrial revolution. That means we'd need to figure out why water only misbehaves when it is part of the world's climate or in politically sensitive areas, as it's still behaving precisely as we'd expect it to in every other instance. That water has a grasp of politics and economics would be quite a shake-up!

What an ironic statement, considering that until just recently, all those 100% certain scientists were completely oblivious that water would act as a giant heat sink for the planet's heat. Gotta love those models.

Comment Re:wrong (Score 1) 385

Just about everyone? No one likes the complexity of the tax system, but very very few people support the flat tax when they understand the ramifications.

What ramifications? Are you assuming that the only possible flat-tax that could pass is a vanilla regressive tax with no prebate? FairTax (which I believe is the most widely supported flat tax proposal) accounts for the regressive nature of flat taxes in its model.

Comment Re:Only Two Futures? (Score 1) 609

Paul's belief in creationism I believe is also tied to his views on issues like same-sex marriage and abortion. If he is president when a bill comes across his desk to legislate things like that, I don't think he's going to represent my views.

Except that he already proved otherwise. In votes. For 30 years. He's going to leave it to the states, where it belongs, his own opinions on the issue be damned. Doesn't it mean anything to you that despite being staunchly pro-life and likely anti-same-sex-marriage as well, he won't actually support federal legislation to try to force those beliefs upon voters? That means a great deal to me and makes me respect him as a politician. I'm tired of people that try to legislate based on their view of what the world should be rather than based on what our system of governance is + what their constituents want.

Comment Re:Great. Let's sit here and wait for the next wav (Score 1) 422

For example jumping to the instant assumption that the author is prophesying the end of the world is a classic denialist trick to distract from actual discussion, and to discredit the science by trying to discredit an unrelated argument.

Trick? What trick? Doom and gloom is the default case for these discussions (See IPCC report "2.2.4 Risk of catastrophic or abrupt change"). We're already moving in a renewables direction. Since 2007, renewables have slowly been eating into fossil fuels and becoming more cost-effective with every passing year. Of their own momentum. As are hybrid/electric vehicles. Which is why there needs not be a discussion, unless the adoption rate isn't occurring fast enough. That very concept of "not fast enough" implies urgency, which implies "end of the world/catastrophic" type scenarios. It's not like it's a huge derailment of logic. Between the dialogue and the agenda, in light of what's already occurring in the sector, it's a reasonable conclusion.

When you make your mark in the world, watch out for guys with erasers. -- The Wall Street Journal