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Comment: Re:I don't even... (Score 1) 258

by StikyPad (#48655971) Attached to: Putting Time Out In Time Out: The Science of Discipline

The author distinguishes between the need to act hastily to stop a behavior (to protect the cat, in your example, or the child from himself, in the article's example), and what we do as a follow up (time-in spent talking and engaging instead of time-out spent isolating).

As we've known for a long time, positive reinforcement causes people (and animals) to repeat behaviors that resulted in being rewarded. Negative reinforcement, on the other hand, can sometimes stop unwanted behavior, but it can just as easily cause people to become better at hiding it, which is a lose-lose. First there's the loss of trust at becoming the person the child has to fear, and then there's the loss of connection by not really knowing what the child is doing. I'm sure many of us have had "if my parents knew..." moments. Maybe we still do! We hide things from people who punish us. (It's a common problem in adult relationships as well. If our S.O. punishes us for something they don't like, usually by withholding themselves, then we start to hide that part of ourselves from them, and vice versa. Rarely do we change our behavior because we were punished.)

Anyway, I tend to agree that we should use positive reinforcement whenever possible, but it does require a lot more time and energy than negative reinforcement. Punishment is much easier to dole out than finding effective rewards. With dogs, you can reward them with a piece of ham, and it will never get old, ever. With kids, yesterday's reward is today's tedium, but punishment doesn't require much creativity or reinventing (unless you enjoy that sort of thing). And negative reinforcement may not be as good, but it would be a lie to say that it's completely ineffective. And some behaviors are only inappropriate in public anyway, like picking your nose, so it doesn't matter if it's hidden. Negative reinforcement can accomplish that, so it's just a question of whether it's worth the weakened bond.

Comment: Re:Go ahead (Score 3, Interesting) 388

by StikyPad (#48617705) Attached to: Sony Leaks Reveal Hollywood Is Trying To Break DNS

Exactly. There's nothing frightening about this at all; it's a nuisance at best for the sites. Between using IP addresses directly, or editing a hosts file, or switching to an offshore DNS server, it's all of a 30 second delay.

For sites dedicated to piracy, it won't make the slightest difference in traffic. The demand is there, so people will seek out the product. The idea that making it marginally (or even substantially) more difficult to find will reduce demand is like saying "If Barnes and Noble doesn't carry pornography, there won't be any demand!"

Is piracy morally justifiable? Not really. In the end, someone is going around the rules of society for personal gain. Still, available evidence suggests that the actual economic damage is minimal, at worst, and possibly that it's helpful to the bottom line. People who pirate seem mostly to be people who wouldn't pay anyway, so they're not really lost as customers. Additionally, word of mouth can help the popularity of films, regardless of whether that opinion came from a free screening, a paid viewing, or a pirated download. From a practical standpoint, it doesn't make sense to focus efforts on stamping out something that's so benign. In other words, we shouldn't tolerate measures that negatively impact the rest of society to protect one group from an imaginary harm.

Comment: Re:pretty dark times here in the states. (Score 2) 772

by StikyPad (#48567329) Attached to: CIA Lied Over Brutal Interrogations

CIA Core Values

* Service. We put Country first and Agency before self. Quiet patriotism is our hallmark. We are dedicated to the mission, and we pride ourselves on our extraordinary responsiveness to the needs of our customers.
* Integrity. We uphold the highest standards of conduct. We seek and speak the truth -- to our colleagues and to our customers. We honor those Agency officers who have come before us and we honor the colleagues with whom we work today.
* Excellence. We hold ourselves -- and each other -- to the highest standards. We embrace personal accountability. We reflect on our performance and learn from that reflection.


Comment: Re:Effectiveness doesn't matter (Score 1) 772

by StikyPad (#48567113) Attached to: CIA Lied Over Brutal Interrogations

Exactly. Hell, robbing banks is damn beneficial, as long as you're the thief and you don't get caught! I mean, slavery helped the economy like nothing else, so at least there was an upside, right?

It's disgusting that anyone would even dare to quibble over the potential benefits of being immoral and unethical, as if it made any difference whatsoever.

Comment: Re:Enlightening... (Score 1) 772

by StikyPad (#48567051) Attached to: CIA Lied Over Brutal Interrogations

I don't know, I think that's asking for a little too much foresight and setting the bar a bit too high. Think of the Milgram experiments. They were told it was okay, that it wasn't torture, and then they realized that it was, and that it was not okay. Some people kept going, but some, through conviction of conscience, stopped. If I was told that waterboarding wasn't torture, knowing nothing about waterboarding and trusting that the people telling me to do it knew what it was or wasn't, then I would probably go along too -- at first.

Comment: Re:From Jack Brennan's response (Score 1) 772

by StikyPad (#48566955) Attached to: CIA Lied Over Brutal Interrogations

Listen, I'm with you that torture is the wrong move, always, but it doesn't need (or likely deserve) a doomsday scenario. "The Arabs" are too disparate and tribal to unite, and even if they did, they still don't have the infrastructure, logistics, or weaponry to stage an invasion.

But just because they don't pose a threat to world domination doesn't mean we can treat them (or anyone) with impunity.

Comment: Re:From Jack Brennan's response (Score 1) 772

by StikyPad (#48566867) Attached to: CIA Lied Over Brutal Interrogations

Please,: let me know if the many (or even one) instances where Americans weren't tortured because America stood on some mythological high ground?

You mean like this?

With time, the 23 prisoners were divided into two groups. The three American men and the three British hostages were singled out for the worst abuse, both because of the militants' grievances against their countries and because their governments would not negotiate, according to several people with intimate knowledge of the events.

Within this subset, the person who suffered the cruelest treatment, the former hostages said, was Mr. Foley. In addition to receiving prolonged beatings, he underwent mock executions and was repeatedly waterboarded.

Is that what you mean?

To be clear I am NOT at all blaming the US for the actions of terrorists. People are accountable for their own actions. But it's certainly evidence that revenge has been focused in our direction, and not in other directions, or that people weren't tortured because they stood on some high ground.

Comment: Re:Still not legal, right? (Score 1) 92

This will basically make retail and delivery jobs obsolete. That's several million people suddenly without work and with no prospects for getting work. I guess there's always tent cities...

Yes, I'm sure all those career delivery men will be heartbroken.

Both of them.

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