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Comment: Re:Won't be enough (Score 1) 173

Nothing you saw can stop Chernobyl from being something that happened,

The fact that the reactor at Chernobyl had a runaway reaction which resulted in a number of deaths is not in question. The relevance of an experimental military reactor using an inherently unstable design in a discussion on the safety of civilian power plants is.

the risk of it happening is part of the equation.

No it isn't. Chernobyl happened for a number of reasons, but ultimately, regardless of failures of equipment or operational mistakes on the ground, the fundamental issue was with the original design of the RBMK-1000 reactors and its high positive void coefficient. This was the only reactor design in the history of nuclear reactors to use a void coefficient nearly so high. Of the few designs that have ever existed that use one that's positive at all, it's so small that the passive safety systems (the ones which work without power or human intervention) protect the functioning of the plant and the simultaneous failure of all active and passive safety mechanisms can never (per physics) result in a Chernobyl level of criticality.

Understand what a void coefficient is in a nuclear reactor and how it applies to former and current reactor designs, then you'll understand why an incident like what we saw in Chernobyl simply isn't possible.

You blame politics, etc., well guess what: you don't get to choose the future politics of the world. That is the level of failure that exists, that is known.

I never once mentioned "politics". I have no idea what you're talking about here. Perhaps you're confusing this with another post by someone else.

That you want to write it off and have history somehow "not count" shows a deep disregard for reality; for the part of reality that has already happened, and that really should have better vision than just the covering of eyes.

That's some lovely poetic language, but it completely distorts what I've said. I'm not trying to write off what happened at Chernobyl. I don't think the military should be building experimental and inherently unstable nuclear reactors near civilian populations and then pushing them to their limits with extremely risk experiments. If you put that on a petition, I'll sign it. If the government wants to do it, I'll protest it. But I don't think that incidents that happen with experimental military reactors have any relevance to a discussion on the safety of civilian power plants. That's like questioning the safety of high school chemistry labs because some meth heads blew themselves up with their home meth lab.

And I noticed you completely ignored the simple fact that watt for watt, nuclear power has been shown to be orders of magnitude safer (even when you include experimental military reactors that went awry) than all other forms of power production. I can only imagine that's because it was evidence that didn't fit with your world view. I would encourage you to expand your horizons and do some research into nuclear power plants instead of taking the Greenpeace talking points at face value. In fact, why not listen to some of the founders of Greenpeace who've come to realize the simple truth that nuclear power is the safest and best solution to our energy needs? If you can't be swayed by new information and evidence, then what you're advocating is more of a religious philosophy.

Comment: Re:Stop rape in India? (Score 1) 231

by Rei (#48948429) Attached to: Indian Woman Sues Uber In the US Over Alleged New Delhi Taxi Rape

Actually, disabling substances are used in the vast majority of rapes. The most common is alcohol (trying to get the victim too drunk to resist or looking for someone who already is, in about two thirds of rapes), but drugs are used in about 20% of additional rapes. Very, very few rapes follow the classic Hollywood script of "stranger leaps out of the bushes with a knife" - so vanishingly few that the scenario is statistically almost nonexistant. Disabling substances are extremely popular because 1) they work very well, 2) the victim often can't remember the attacker well if at all, 3) the victim is not in a state to be making a report until long after the event, 4) the victim's ability to make legally reliable testimony is compromised. Why would people choose the Hollywood way over that?

And I'm sorry, but if you think that you can watch everything you consume every second of every evening you're out and not slip up, you're an idiot. And yes, the reason people get mad at people like you is that the problem is that there are people out there drugging other peoples' drinks en masse and thinking that this is acceptable behavior, not that victims haven't gained supernatural abilities to hyperfocus on everything they may potentially consume at all times and never slip up. "Look, I'm sorry that you're dying of pancreatic cancer, but you should have been getting pancreatic function tests daily and working two jobs to pay for weekly MRI scans to find it before it could have posed a threat to you, and because you weren't, it's your own damned fault, and don't act like I'm a jerk for pointing this out!" That's how you come across when you take that tack. The problem is the f***ing cancer, not the victim.

Comment: Re:Won't be enough (Score 1) 173

It's about as contested as the validity of the Theory of Evolution and the effectiveness of childhood vaccines in that there are people who claim it not to be true in spite of massive amount of empirical evidence.

First, is nuclear power safer than other methods of power generation? Yes, by orders of magnitude.

Second, Chernobyl (which is included in the evidence presented above). Chernobyl was a reactor that served two purposes for the Soviets. First, it was used to experiment on the capabilities and the limitations of the RBMK-1000 reactor series (this is what caused the disaster there). Second, it was used to produce weaponized materials for nuclear weapons for the Soviet military. As it produced power and that power needed to go somewhere, it was connected to the grid and added supply to nearby communities. Now I could get into the fact that the RBMK-1000 was one of the only reactor designs ever constructed that used a high positive void coefficient and that since that disaster, every single nuclear reactor in the world has been either designed or modified to not do that. I could get into the fact that the disaster that happened there (runaway reaction) isn't possible anywhere else without breaking the laws of physics due to the design of the plants (regardless of any safety features - it's a physical limitation of the design itself). But I think you should do your own research on those things.

Suffice it to say that Chernobyl is included in the numbers proving that nuclear power is the safest form of power production ever utilized by mankind and that it's arguable that it shouldn't be (which would only improve the numbers above for nuclear). Whichever way you stand on that point of contention (whether or not an experimental military facility operating a reactor design known to be unstable and dangerous in such a way that it was regularly pushed to its design tolerances should be included in a list of civilian nuclear power plant accidents), nuclear still comes out way ahead in the basic math. It's merely a matter of how many orders of magnitude its safety record exceeds that of other power production methods.

There's nothing unclear about over half a century of safety record that demonstrates an exceedingly safe technology. There's nothing unclear about the fact that if you care about human life, nuclear is the only option and that if you care about the environment, nuclear is the only good option that can handle base load. You can contest whether gravity exists all day long, but if you jump off a desk, you're going to fall to the floor every time.

Reality is that which is still there regardless of how much you wish it weren't so.

Comment: Re:Stop rape in India? (Score 1) 231

by Rei (#48945731) Attached to: Indian Woman Sues Uber In the US Over Alleged New Delhi Taxi Rape

Right, so women are supposed to walk around at all times with a gun in their hand, never setting it down for anything, and have a proximity radar to warn them if anyone is approaching them where they can't see so that she can pump them full of lead?

Why, I bet the gun will just shoot the rohipnol right out of drinks too!

The percent of rape cases in which having a gun could have helped is probably in in the single digits. And with it of course carries the risk of escalating the risk of getting you seriously injured or killed.

Comment: Re:The crime happened to an Indian in India. (Score 1) 231

by Rei (#48945635) Attached to: Indian Woman Sues Uber In the US Over Alleged New Delhi Taxi Rape

I should add that the Strauss-Kahn red meat is getting old. First off, most of the descriptions of the case are way off, partially inspired by the prosecutors switching from overplaying the case against him to overplaying the case for him. To be clear:

1) If an accusation is made, and the accused is convicted, the legal system has been determined that the person is guilty.
2) If an accusation is made, the accused is not charged, and the accuser is convicted of making a false accusation, then the legal system has determined that it was a false charge.
3) If an accusation is made, the accused is not charged, but neither is the accuser, then the legal system has made no finding in any direction due to insufficient evidence to match the "beyond a reasonable doubt" standard in either direction.

This should be obvious, but for some reason, many people are always fixated on interpreting #3 (by far the most common scenario) as #2.

As for Kahn? Since then he's been caught up in one sex related charge after another - and has admitted to parts of them. He's currently out on bail awaiting trial for running a prostitution ring; the trial begins a couple days from now.

Comment: Re:Won't be enough (Score 1) 173

much less establish a track record of nuclear safety.

Do you realize that nuclear power - with everything that people have done wrong with it - is by far the safest method of producing energy (clean, dirty, or otherwise) that mankind has ever developed? Literally nothing, including wind or solar, is safer. Nothing is. Even if you choose to include Chernobyl (which was an experimental reactor used as a weapons research lab that happened to produce electricity for nearby communities), it's still by far safer than any other source.

So let's talk about risk and let's be real about it. The other sources of power are killing human beings; actually killing them (not just pretend in somebody's head killing them). Nuclear, even 1950s nuclear, is vastly safer. That's demonstrably the case with decades of clear evidence.

Comment: Re:What could possibly go wrong? (Score 2) 259

by Rei (#48938615) Attached to: FDA Wants To Release Millions of Genetically Modified Mosquitoes In Florida

My point was all about what happens when the mosquitos are not as infertile as planned.

If some offspring survive that means that they didn't get the gene to kill them for some reason. Aka, they're just like wild populations. So.....?

If chemical companies are going to dump something into my backyard, I will scream and shout just as loud

Your back yard is full of the intentional products of chemical companies. Here we're talking about the intentional products of genetic engineering. You're trying to change the situation by comparing waste products with intentional products.

You seem to claim that people should just trust experts. I claim that experts should attempt to inform the public better, thereby earning their trust...

Sorry, but Joe Blow GED is never going to become an expert on genetic engineering. Ever. Period. And the same goes for the vast majority of the public.

So, rabbits that got released in Australia are the top predator? The Pampas grass in California is the top predator? I can make a long list of invasive species that are not the top predator and still influenced their ecosystem a lot


Got any examples that aren't introduced species? We're talking about reducing or eliminating species within an ecosystem, not adding new ones from totally different ecosystem. And part of the reason rabbits were so uncontrolled in Australia anyway was because settlers had killed off almost all of the top predators. One could easily imagine that, for example, tasmanian tigers would have quite enjoyed a rabbit feast. Dingo numbers were also shaply culled in the areas with the highest rabbit populations.

Comment: Re:They better be damn sure we're not home... (Score 1) 392

You might not "win," but there have been a number of SWAT officers killed during no-knock raids where the homeowner believed it was a home invasion. Several of those victims (the homeowners, I mean) have survived to be acquitted in court even.

Comment: Re:The rate at which oil prices are dropping ... (Score 1) 247

by Fjandr (#48938103) Attached to: Engineers Develop 'Ultrarope' For World's Highest Elevator

Most of the Arab nations actually have massive diversified investment schemes that will allow them to continue being rich even without oil. Of course, it's easier for the smaller ones like Dubai and the UAE, but Saudi Arabia has been unhitching as many of their economy's horses from oil as they can for a long time.

The biggest difference between time and space is that you can't reuse time. -- Merrick Furst