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Comment: Re:Are you kidding (Score 0, Flamebait) 805

by Petron (#46767005) Attached to: Study Finds US Is an Oligarchy, Not a Democracy

Wow... where to start.

People do vote for what they feel is best, but not FOR a person, but against. They pick the lesser of two evils. Heck last presidential election Obama himself said a vote is the best revenge. Voting for revenge? Really?

Tax cuts are tax relief. When you get a refund it is not a hand out from the government, it is YOUR money being returned because you paid too much. The government runs on your money. It takes from you for the 'common good'... and some of that common good is waste (pork).

Social programs don't help the poor. I know, I was poor. I was unemployed and the 'case workers' at the unemployment office actually told me NOT to look for work and they would 'take care of me'... The people who were there were reading the paper (not the classifieds), playing games on the computers, checking out web pages (not work related sites). I went home and found a job on my own. When I went back in to tell them I didn't need aid anymore because I found a job, they looked disappointed and in disbelief. The person I talked to said "But... but, we would have taken care of you". I told them I can take care of myself. But being around and having poor friends I can't tell you the number of times I've heard "I can't get a job, I'll lose my [insurance, ebt card, etc]." We 'declared war' on poverty back in the 60's and we only promoted it's growth. The people on the programs are so scared they might lose those programs they will vote to ensure they keep getting their crumbs. See "Obama-phone lady". Back in my poor days, (about 10 years ago) I was making around 11-12K a year (yes, that's poverty line). I'll be making at least 80K by the end of the year. I worked my way out... and I had to fight those who were trying to 'help' me. Crabs in a bucket is also true.

When a teenager gets pregnant, how is it NOT her and her boyfriend's fault (excluding rape/incest of course)? When you choose to have sex, you chose to take the risk. Years back, teen pregnancy was very rare. A handful in a state... but now it's way too common. High-schools are having daycare centers built inside. But we have pushed how socially acceptable a teen-pregnancy is... heck we even glorify it.

As for career women... fine. Women can pursue any career they want. But again, take responsibility of your actions. If you have a risk of getting pregnant, that is a risk you either can accept mitigate with birth control.

As for Pro-Life is not about the life of the baby... are you kidding? Abortion ends a human life. That can't be disputed. Is it a life? Yes. Even if it is a single cell, it has the properties of life. It grows, it feeds, it is alive. Is it human? Yes. It may not have 2 arms and 2 legs at the time, but I know people who don't have 2 arms, or 2 legs, either by an accident, or birth defect... they are still human. It boils down to DNA, and even as a single cell, it has human DNA and it is alive.

And when you drive by a sign, like when I visit my folks, from a young couple renting billboard space with the text: "Unexpected pregnancy? We will adopt your baby! Call [phone number]. Please." You see how people are begging to adopt. The waiting list to adopt a baby is in years. It's so long we are importing babies from China because that process (still years) is easier, and less expensive. My sister-in-law was adopted. All she knows about her birth-mother is: She was young, and not ready to take care of a child, and she did consider abortion. My sister-in-law is a wonderful, sweet person. We are all thankful her birth-mother allowed her parents to adopt her.

Comment: Re:the pink elephant in the room: capitalism. (Score 1) 325

by Petron (#46759859) Attached to: Netflix Gets What It Pays For: Comcast Streaming Speeds Skyrocket

It's not "American Capitalism" its a Goverment-Corporation complex.

AKA: Crony-Capitalism.

Government allows Comcast to be the only choice for the vast majority of their customer. They now have a monopoly, a government approved one. If we had 10+ choices for high-speed internet, then this would not be an issue... All it would take is one to offer high-speed, unfiltered internet at a fair price and all the others would have to match to compete. Capitalism works best in a competitive market.

Comment: Re:Vive le Galt! (Score 1) 695

by Petron (#46334315) Attached to: Mt. Gox Gone? Apparent Theft Shakes Bitcoin World

Libertarians shouldn't be angry. People who risk their money in Bitcoins are making a choice. They are assuming a risk and acknowledge that it is a risk. Why do they take the risk, because there is a chance of a reward. That is how things should work. You take a risk, you don't get bailed out if it goes south.

Comment: Re:Not fracking, a water tower (Score 1) 317

by Petron (#46323761) Attached to: Exxon Mobile CEO Sues To Stop Fracking Near His Texas Ranch

If the lawsuit is successful, and the tower is blocked, it can be, and likely will, be constructed elsewhere. The lawsuit will not stop the fracking, at best it might delay it a little.

Now, it a competitor is trying tap into a big resource... would it be in his best interest to be as much of a headache as possible... Delay the development so his competitor has to spent much more to get things done. Hmmm... just a thought.

Comment: Re:Your task: explain how Net Neutrality stops thi (Score 5, Insightful) 298

by Petron (#46166235) Attached to: Is Verizon Already Slowing Netflix Down?

No, they are confused by an unclear description of "net neutrality".

I've seen some places (non-fox news) describe "net neutrality" as "Enforcing traffic to be at equal speeds"... which is not the case. People using that description would be against it because they believe it would mean all web traffic would be slower, to match the speed of the slowest server... That reeks of "All must be fair, so we must race to the bottom" and "Everybody gets a trophy" that many people disapprove of.

If you inform them that Net Neutrality is against throttling speeds, and having customers get what they paid for... then most of those against, turn sides.

I see it as we either need to enforce Net Neutrality, or enable a free market, where we have more than one or two choices for broadband (or any other utility).... If we had 10+ ISP's to choose from, this wouldn't be an issue, one would not throttle, and that would force the others to compete. But we don't have a free market... and too many of those in power (both in government, and the big TelComs) would lose money to allow a free market.


South Koreans Using Kinect To Monitor DMZ 133

Posted by samzenpus
from the state-game dept.
Nerval's Lobster writes "The South Korean government is reportedly using Microsoft's Kinect motion-based game controller to monitor the heavily guarded DMZ (Demilitarized Zone) that separates the country from North Korea. The brainchild of freelance South Korean developer Jae Kwan Ko, the system is reportedly capable of differentiating between people and animals. (Hat tip to Kotaku, which originally ferreted out the story from South Korean publication Hankooki .) That makes it superior to the infrared systems already in use along the DMZ, which have a harder time determining whether a moving object is human. The Kinect-based system can send alerts of suspicious activity to the nearest military outpost. While the South Korean government reportedly installed the hardware at select portions of the DMZ last year, news about it is only emerging now—and details are relatively scarce, considering how this is a military project. Despite that secrecy, the South Korean government is playing up Jae Kwan Ko's contributions, highlighting him in the local media as an example of innovation and creative drive. Largely self-taught, he makes money by building apps for various mobile platforms—most of which, presumably, have nothing to do with detecting military threats."

Comment: Re:Private enterprise to the rescue (Score 2, Insightful) 292

by Petron (#45985669) Attached to: Thousands of Gas Leaks Discovered Under Streets of Washington DC

Like Chernobyl? Run by the government for the public good... then it exploded in 1986. Then it was brought back online and ran until the end 2000 because the public good needed cheap power.

The problem is the lack of free markets. In most cities you don't have the option of 5 different gas companies. You get one. That is because the city leaders in their infinite wisdom on what is good for the people decided that ABC Company will handle all the hardware and maintenance.

I worked at an ISP as a Tech support manager years back, and our DSL lines had to use the local TelCom's lines. We had to pay a rental fee for those lines (to pay for maintenance) and at the end of the day, we made very little on DSL. You see they had the government contract. All phone lines in the area were controlled by them. Any other TelCom had to use their lines (with the rental fee). They had a monopoly, where the competition had to buy from them. And the TelCom had crappy lines and had no interest in fixing them. One section of town was wired with 'Paper lines'... copper wire wrapped in wax paper. These lines were meant to be used as a temporary fix while real line can be ordered and laid... but they used it as normal line. When ever it rained we had calls in and you can year popping on the line. If you can hear noise... think on what the computer picks up. The only resort they had was call the TelCom to fix it... and a few days later, when things dried out... "Everything is fine'. We got sick of it and we started to put up wireless routers all over town. We offered wireless internet, and started to move all our DSL customers to wireless... only then did the TelCom started to replace those paper lines with real lines. Funny how competition forces improvements heh?

With the utilities we don't have a free market. We have a strongly regulated, heavily controlled, government backed monopoly... and then we blame the free market when it becomes corrupt. I have one choice for a gas company. I have one choice for an electric company. I have one choice for a TelCom. That is not the Free Market.

Comment: Re:They're living on the government teat. (Score 5, Interesting) 135

by Petron (#45727355) Attached to: Academics Should Not Remain Silent On Government Hacking

Actually, it would.

The problem comes from bankruptcy laws. Banks were having a fit because students would get loans, and when they graduate, declare bankruptcy and have the loans forgiven. The showboat case for this was people graduating as medical doctors, declaring bankruptcy, then getting a high paying job. Banks went to the government to 'fix' this problem and the fix was: Student loans are immune to bankruptcy. If you get a student loan, you will pay it back, even if that means you will have your McPaycheck garnished.

This now means that banks have little to no risk to their loans. Why would they refuse any loan? If the student is successful or not, either way, they get paid. A kid that gets straight D's in school and wants to major in "Classical Nintendo" Sure! Here's money with a nice interest rate.

Now we have banks giving money anybody who wants it, demand for higher education goes up. When demand goes up and supply stays the same... prices go up. Prices go up? Get a loan!

It's a self-feeding model that all started with crony-capitalism. Banks and Government got in bed together. Now I don't blame the banks for complaining... it is a problem. If I lent off a ton of money for students to become doctors, and they kept stiffing me, I'd be pissed. But the Government gave the Banks too sweet of a deal. They gave them a win-win.

What if the banks had a 10 year probation window on student loan bankruptcies instead? If a student declares bankruptcy, the loan is put on hold for 10 years with no interest. If during that 10 year time, the student finds a job that could may payments, the loan sticks. If they can't after 10 years, the loan is forgiven. Banks are protected from those "evil doctors" getting hefty loans then dumping them... Students are protected from not being able to find a job afterwards. The loan (and cost of the education) must reflect the job that is received in the end. Students with poor grades, and majors that aren't in demand are less likely to get loans, as they are now risky to the bank. All of this should lower costs of education.

Comment: Re:New meaning to blue screen of death? (Score 1) 214

by Petron (#45726025) Attached to: Former Microsoft Exec To Lead

The problem with the "US vs [other country]" is the US has other issues the other countries don't have.

First, the US is HUGE compared to most of those countries.
Second, we have a huge drug problem.
Third we have massive traffic related deaths (10+ million per year). The only country that has a higher percentage of citizens owning cars is Morocco, and they don't have nearly the population we do.

When you count the huge drug and traffic accidents to our life expectancies and infant death, the US isn't nearly as bad as people make it sound. When we have birth issues because the parents are junkies, or millions DOA from a car accident, it really doesn't matter if the hospital is top notch or not.

Comment: Re:Obama (Score 2, Insightful) 425

by Petron (#45650891) Attached to: US Treasury Completes Bailout of General Motors

The market has been fine since the beginning of human history. Leave it alone

The Free Market saves! The Free Market has no flaws! Trust in the Free Market, and you will be able to buy Paradise(tm) some day!

Market failure is both a hard fact of reality and, apparently, anathema to the dumbest religion in history.

The Free Market is about profit and loss. Risk and reward. There is no such thing as "Too big to fail" in the Free Market. GM should have failed. Let it be refactored to be profitable without a big bailout, or even sell off it's assets.

Bailing out companies that make poor decisions because they are "Too big to fail" is crony-capitalism. It allows companies to make poor decisions and get away with them, and promotes brib^H^H^H^HPolitical Contributions.

"Maintain an awareness for contribution -- to your schedule, your project, our company." -- A Group of Employees