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Comment Re:Another Shining Example; (Score 4, Insightful) 281

"An interesting tidbit. Despite its desert location, this plant needs 1.7 million m3 of water per year to keep the reflectors clean."

That is not interesting. That is meaningless. 1.7 million m3 of water per year compared to... what, exactly? How much water does a coal/nuclear plant use? How much to mine, refine and transport the coal/uranium? What's that calculated in litres per megawatt hour? What's the tradeoff in terms of emissions and waste?

Also, I found $3.9 billion per 160 MW peak is just for stage one; the total project is projected at $9 billion for 580 MW peak (and NOOR uses molten salt storage - so unlike Ivanpah, the NOOR plants will continue generating power at night). That rather alters the ratio, doesn't it.

As it happens, the amount of water usage is apparently about twice that of a wet-cooled coal plant, though (1) only NOOR's first stage is wet-cooled, (2) the post-process water quality is also important and (3) really, a proper study would examine the complete life cycle of solar vs coal vs nuclear power generation including all ongoing costs (e.g. fuel, emissions, cleanup, etc).

This is supposed to be news for nerds, stuff that matters. I am unimpressed when people offhandedly mention a big-sounding number and then go on to make vague derogatory apples-and-oranges comparisons.

Comment Re:Liability / Obligation (Score 5, Informative) 423

According to the Ford website, the feature is only used when you have (1) linked your mobile to the car's bluetooth, AND (2) have turned the Emergency Assistance on. It calls the standard emergency telephone number of your country (e.g. 911 in US, 112 in UK, 000 in Australia, etc).

For example, from the Australian entry on the site: "In the event of an accident severe enough to either trigger airbag deployment or shut off the fuel pump, Emergency Assistance uses your mobile phone, which must be within mobile reception range, to dial triple zero (000). Once connected, Emergency Assistance then transmits a message stating that your vehicle has been in an accident and provides the emergency services operator your precise GPS coordinates. The phone line remains open so that anyone in the vehicle may speak to the operator using the vehicle’s receiver."

Comment Re:I understand the consternation (Score 1) 665

So you really think that all the small business that have a mere half dozen machines should go through the gods-damned rigmarole of buying Windows Server from Microsoft, configuring it, securing it and connecting their machines to it, just so they don't have to deal with Microsoft forcing an OS change on them?

... By any chance do you work in Microsoft Sales?

Comment Re:Paved with good intentions... (Score 3, Insightful) 247

Odds the 13-year-old has been told where the bomb has been planted: low.
Odds the 13-year-old will make up something even remotely believable just to make the torturing stop: not low.
Odds the 13-year-old has been told, if at all, where the enemy wants you to believe the bomb has been planted: not low.
Odds the parents and neighbours of the 13-year-old didn't notice "large quantities" of bomb-making material being delivered: not insignificant.

Odds you will fuck up by torturing a 13-year-old to no avail and create a perception that the US government finds torturing children acceptable in the eyes of its citizens, its allies and its enemies: high.

Odds that even if the torture "works", you have created a perception that the US government finds torturing children acceptable in the eyes of its citizens, its allies and its enemies: high.

If I was your CO and you did this, even if you succeeded: arrest you and throw the entire damn book at you, because you just made that kid a martyr. AQ is not an existential threat to the nation, but agents of the state endorsing or carrying out the torture of minors? Are.

Comment Re:Gun-free zone? (Score 1) 1165

I was going to say "nice use of satire" but then I noticed a fundamental flaw in your argument. Speed limit signs aren't (or shouldn't) be posted arbitrarily. They are supposed to be posted to alert and remind the public to the limitations of the road and of human ability, as decided by professional road safety engineers.

"Speed limit 30": engineers consider speeds beyond this limit to be dangerous. It's not just human 'laws', it's the consequences of physics. Even if you fully intend to be a law-abiding citizen, it is still useful for you to be alerted to or reminded of the local speed limit, and you have more (even if not necessarily much) chance of avoiding or at least surviving a collision with a criminal driver if you are not speeding yourself.

"Gun free zone": seems to be a case of someone thinking that a mere sign, in a country where guns are cheaply and easily obtained, will magically protect those behind the sign, despite a complete lack of professional (or even amateur) 'border' controls. If you fully intend to be a law-abiding citizen, you may be placing yourself at greater risk of being targeted by an armed criminal seeking a victim-rich environment.

Now if the "gun free zone" sign is backed up by real security to protect those behind the sign? Fine. But if it's just yet another case of "security theater"? That's not fine. My question would be: how many of those "gun free" signs/zones have been professionally rated by qualified actuaries?

Comment Re: Don't we (the US) already have that... (Score 1) 1291

It's interesting that all your fighting and hard work has left you with less empathy for your fellows rather than an appreciation for your collective plight. It makes me suspect you are being burnt out.

And no, I did not say that _I_ find such paperwork burdensome. Because I am in tolerable health. But the government does not demand that (additional) paperwork from the healthy and the working. They demand it from the sick and the frail. "Prove you are valuable to us. Prove that you are worthy of our generosity. Despite your years of paying taxes on time, we demand you expend more time and more effort on sating our need for control."

It may - and does - claim to the contrary all it likes, but by the results the US does not truly "care" for the poor, not even its own veterans.

Should one day you call out for aid in lifting your hand to the bowl, I hope whoever listens reaches out to aid you without first demanding you prove you cannot.

Comment Re:I don't want to live on this planet anymore (Score 2) 1291

Where did you get the idea that a UBI is communist?

Are you using some strange definition of communism that would not only allow but provide individuals to have money to spend as they choose, on products from whomever they choose, without the state dictating who they can buy from and at what prices?

Even a poorly-regulated UBI would be a vast improvement over the hodge-podge of shoddy cronyistic "welfare" programs (e.g. food stamps) implemented by committees of (maybe) well-intentioned do-gooders that we have now.

Comment Re:Job guarantee is much more sound approach (Score 1) 1291

How do you prevent such a program from resulting in a bloated public service and/or a population falling into what is basically indentured servitude as corporations take advantage (much like they are doing now with the prison-industrial complex) of subcontracting minimum-wage government "employees"?

There is one very good reason to choose a basic income policy: it altruistically empowers individuals rather than place control in the hands of a privileged few.

Comment Re:The US can't even do healthcare like a g8 natio (Score 1) 1291

Rather than trying to give people more money, I would rather see an approach that starts incentivizing production and reducing barriers to entry to all markets.

Lack of money is one of those barriers to entry to all markets. Think of UBI as venture capital financing on a ubiquitous scale; the return sought is a more advanced civilization with a higher quality of life for all concerned.

Comment Re:Simple math (Score 1) 1291

How much of the money in the current system is eaten by overhead/management? How much is eaten by knock-on effects of failing to prevent the consequences of poverty? What's the cost of the mal-nourished and the homeless in additional welfare, police and emergency services? What's the cost of poverty-derived crime?

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