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Comment: Re:Duh. (Score 3, Interesting) 181

by TapeCutter (#48604989) Attached to: Linking Drought and Climate Change: Difficult To Do

Isn't this something everyone already knew, radical warmists and evil deniers alike?

Maybe, but statistical thinking doesn't come naturally. People cheat at gambling by loading dice so that they come up snake eyes (say) 1 in 20 throws. They get away with it because even if you know the dice are loaded there is no way to link any particular snake eye event to the hidden weights. The victims simply subscribe it to luck, but the longer you play the more suspicious they will become of your "lucky streak". Same deal with storms, floods, and droughts.


by TapeCutter (#48596197) Attached to: The Shale Boom Won't Stop Climate Change; It Could Make It Worse


If we are being 'serious', nobody has claimed there is such a thing, however the climate our civilization has experienced in the last 10k yrs has been in a very stable "dynamic equilibrium". That is set to change because humans are kicking the crap out of the climate system, it will fuck up our agriculture, flood our coastal cities, and cause mass migration. How much worse it gets is depends on how we behave, if continue on our current course then the laws of physics say the ocean will become acidic in the 2100's - the last time such an event happened naturally, it coincided with the worst ever extinction event known to man.

We have already got a taste of how climatic changes can cause social disruption in Syria. The "arab spring" was preceded by the worst drought in the 10ky history of the fertile crescent (the birthplace of agriculture). The 'unprecedented' drought caused people to abandon their farms and set off food riots in major cities such as Cairo and Aleppo. In Syria agriculture totally collapsed, a full 10% of the population (2M people) simply walked off their "dust bowl" farms just prior to the civil war, coincidence?

Comment: Re:Out with the old... or not? (Score 5, Insightful) 295

by TapeCutter (#48595917) Attached to: French Cabbies Say They'll Block Paris Roads On Monday Over Uber
I drove a cab in Australia for 3yrs, it's not the worst job I've had but it's certainly the worst paid job, think fruit picking money. Most cabbies don't own the cab or the plates (medallion). The cab owners are the ones who are understandably getting upset since if uber is legal the plates they paid hundreds of thousands of dollars for suddenly become worthless.

Uber drivers are desperate for work and silly enough to run their own car into the ground for little more than petrol money, when it's dead they can't afford a new one and walk away in a worse situation than they started. Courier companies do the same thing here in Melbourne, they call you a "sub-contractor" get you to stick a "courier" sign on your own car then you drive it at your own expense until it falls apart. And if you're unlucky enough to fuck up without the right insurance, you will be paying for it the rest of your life.

From my experience with real cabs, sticking with a regulated taxi industry is the best thing any of us can do to stop uber exploiting desperate people in a race to the bottom.

Comment: Choices. (Score 4, Insightful) 416

by TapeCutter (#48576623) Attached to: MIT Removes Online Physics Lectures and Courses By Walter Lewin

Makes perfect sense, according to the public.

I loved Rolf Harris, I grew up in the 60's watching his show on B&W TV, now he turns my stomach. I've laughed my arse off to Bill Cosby for 40yrs but now I look at him with suspicion. I came across the video in TFA earlier this year and reposted it to FB, now I want to unpost it. These people have made fools of all who applauded them in the past, they were "grooming" everyone, not just the immediate victim. It's human nature to want violent revenge, it's much more civilised to simply have nothing to do with them. So as a grandfather to 3 girls, I say publically ostracising sexual predators for their crimes makes perfect sense, they know the social and legal punishment, they know they will be a target in jail, but they still choose to do it.

Comment: Re:Is it legally binding (Score 1) 398

by TapeCutter (#48551211) Attached to: Displaced IT Workers Being Silenced
Agree, but there's honour among pimps and personally I wouldn't want to hire someone who scammed the pimp I'm paying to do the grunt work of finding someone who can fulfill my needs. The standard thing to do if the company finds someone by chance is to hire them thru the agency. The reason that large corporations do this is because they know that for a business deal to work BOTH sides have to profit, but they don't need to profit on every transaction, just the bottom line.

Disclaimer: I was a contractor for 15yrs and permanent for the last 10, I would rather deal with a pimp than HR anyday, most pimps I've met are ex-IT and can actually discuss the "technical bits" without reading from the advertised job description. All you need to know about them is you are their "product", not their customer, they want to make their product attractive. The employer pays the agent for the most attractive, if the employer stops paying for an agent he isn't going to give the money he "saved" to you, he will still need it to hire more HR people to do the work of the agent.

To restore a sense of reality, I think Walt Disney should have a Hardluckland. -- Jack Paar