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Submission + - How Amazon, eBay, Walmart and Sears Took Down the Confederate Flag writes: In South Carolina, the governor has called for the Confederate flag to stop flying over the capitol. The governors of Virginia and North Carolina quickly declared that they would remove the flag from state license plates. Meanwhile, several of the country's top retailers — including eBay and Amazon — announced in quick succession that they would stop selling Confederate flag merchandise. Now MJ Lee reports at CNN that the debate over the Confederate flag is the most recent and vivid illustration of how changes in the business community can influence and pressure politics. "What you are seeing is a broad, acknowledgment across both the consumer, the political and the business community that that particular emblem is no longer part of something that should be a state-issued emblem," says GOP strategist Scott Jennings. Walmart, Amazon, eBay and Sears announced within the span of one day that they would ban the sale of Confederate flag merchandise from their stores, saying they had no intention of offending customers. As Walmart CEO Doug McMillon put it, the decision was straightforward: "We want everybody to feel comfortable shopping at Walmart." Corporate and business leaders say that the abandoning the flag is a step towards inclusiveness for a region that has long struggled to shed negative images. "The business community — they have a lot of say and power all over the country, whether it's on religion or ethnicity or LGBT issues," says Ralph Northam. "When you're running a business, you have to have the doors open and welcome diversity."

Comment Probably not what it appears (Score 1) 182

My bet is that he wants to go to 7% tax straight away instead of having the tax at 2% for the first four years because his wells are older than those of other companies and this tax structure would put him at a disadvantage? Unfortunately, more often than not when businesses push for regulations it's not out of pure motives but as a way to restrict competition.

Comment Misprint... (Score 0) 70

'My goal in inventing this clock is to help scientists improve their understanding of what speeds up and slows down the human aging process.

That's a misprint. The actual quote is "My goal in inventing this clock is to become really stinking rich. I don't mean a little rich, I mean Bill Gates rich. Famous too. 'The guy who solved aging' has a good ring to it. Mostly, however, I just want sacks and sacks of cash.

Comment Re:Why only the Northern Hemisphere? (Score 1) 310

I'm not sure where you got that graph, but it doesn't match the official statistics from the NSIDC. There is absolutely a statistically significant trend in Antarctic ice, both in minimums and maximums. In fact, the minimum trend is even more pronounced than the maximum trend. Now, had you argued that the ice melt in the Arctic far exceeds the gains in the Antarctic (by about 3 times) I'd agree with you but as-is you are very much overly minimizing the gains in the Antarctic.

Comment not so good with numbers... (Score -1) 151

The two events, nicknamed Bert and Ernie, have a 99% chance of originating outside our galaxy

I beg to differ. They either have a 100% chance of originating outside our galaxy or a 0% chance. We may be 99% sure it originated outside the galaxy but that doesn't impact whether they actually did or not. (and don't give me any of the quantum observer effects jargon. These waves functions would have collapsed long ago).

Comment Re:Misleadingly framed (Score 3, Funny) 277

This is as misleading as the studies that "disproved" that organic food is more nutritious. Nobody was making the claim they disproved.

There are absolutely many people making the claim that organic foods are more nutritious. Like here, here and here.

And yes, there are people making the claim that MSNBC is not biased or much less biased than Fox News.

Comment Tantalum won't be much effected (Score 4, Interesting) 139

I happen to live close to the largest Tantalum processor in the world and so I've been following tantalum movements for a long time. The main constraint on Tantalum as it is isn't processing cost but supply of the mineral.

At CURRENT extraction rates there's less than a 50 year supply so making the processing cheaper will just make it run out faster.It's possible some new sources will be found, but no apparent ones are on the horizon.

Comment Re:No bias at all... (Score 1, Insightful) 484

And the F-35 replaces the F-18, F-15, F-16, A-8, A-10 and the Harriers. The 3 versions they will have is a huge SAVINGS because it replaces so many other planes. Of course, the author also doesn't adjust for inflation which is a huge factor. I'm not saying that there isn't a lot to cut from the Pentagon, or even from the F-35 program, I'm just saying that the rational given here makes no sense at all.

Comment So what... (Score 1) 427

[Oracle pays] about 2.5% at the time (by contrast, grad students and parents pay 6.8%-7.9% for Federal student loans).

Why bother to add this? Oracle is a very credit worthy company with large assets. In contrast, student loans have a very high default rate and are risky to lenders (or the government if they assure them).

Obviously it was added to try to create some outrage where none rightly exists.

Comment Re:Now THERE's a reversal. (Score 1) 251

Warming has not been lower than forecast (what stinking place did you pull that from?)

I pulled them from a VERY stinking place, some place most people never go, the actual data. Take a look at the IPCC forecasts from 1999 IPCC now take a look at actual data from 1999 to 2012 at NOAA (or Hadley CRUT).

It clearly shows that while there has been warming it has been lower than the low forecast.

If you don't want to sift through the data (although I encourage you to do so and see for yourself), here's an article from an anti-denier site showing Hansen's 1988 predictions similarly being low. Note that this site is in the business of proving that global warming is real, their bias is strong and their data is suspect but even they clearly admit that actual temperatures are below the forecast.

These aren't cherry picked examples either, take most past temperature predictions and chart them against actual and you'll see that the rise is less than predicted. Or check the IPCC predictions from edition to edition and you'll see that they are slowly moving down in the near term (although often have global warming shift into high gear a few decades hence).

To be clear, I'm not a denialist. I do think global warming is real and a problem. But I think Climate Science is a lot like economics, they have a pretty good idea what's going on and you'd be foolish to ignore them, but you'd also be foolish to think that they have everything fully figured out or that they aren't missing some really big and important factors in their analysis.

Anything cut to length will be too short.