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Comment: Re:Heard that before (Score 1) 359 359

As another thought experiment, imagine that there was a horse with the following properties:
- Pink in color
- Of appealing physical proportions
- Has a single long, straight horn projecting from its forehead.
- Possesses the ability to fly.

It would undoubtedly have significant value to collectors, and I would certainly want one.

Comment: Re:Or hey, maybe we need (Score 2) 599 599

Desalinization costs around $2000 per acre-foot. Beef production uses around 1800 gallons per pound. Feeding cows from California-grown crops would therefore tack more than $11 per pound onto the price of beef. Almonds use a similar amount of water per pound as beef, so would face a similar markup.

Rice needs 300 gal/pound, which would add $1.84 per pound to its price. Maybe Israelis pay these kinds of prices for their food. However, that's simply not realistic for this country. We'd shift to imports or food grown in other states before paying for staple crops grown with desalinized water.

Comment: Re:Or hey, maybe we need (Score 5, Insightful) 599 599

Why not?

Because in the real world, it's NOT simple to move water around at all. Moving water around has involved some of the most expensive undertakings this country has ever attempted, and has been responsible for massive environmental damage and the disruption of the livelihoods of countless people.

Moreover, the water has to come from somewhere. If you hadn't noticed, the entire western US has almost no extra water. Precipitation is simply not refilling the original sources of Western water supplies. Maybe you think it's cheap and easy to pipe it over the continental divide, after somehow wresting water rights from people in the East. If so, you're an ignoramus.

And desalinization is totally unrealistic to address anything but urban water use, which is a drop in the bucket.

I don't know why you're surprised by "weird nastiness" over water rights. Civilizations all over the world have been highly protective of their water rights for millennia, and many wars have been fought over water. Fresh water is probably the single most important resource on the planet, and nobody is going to give up their water without a fight, even if they're not using all of it at this exact moment. There is simply not going to be any Kumbaya solution to these issues.

Comment: Re:Or hey, maybe we need (Score 0) 599 599

I'm harmed because huge water boondoggles are usually bankrolled by the Federal government.

Why don't you look at my original post, where I said your white elephant projects are fine, as long as it's 100% paid for by the people who chose to live there.

And while you're at it, why don't cut out the passive-aggressive fake empathy that drips from every one of your posts? It's not fooling anyone.

Comment: Re:Or hey, maybe we need (Score 3, Interesting) 599 599

Sure. But only as long as you make those people who chose to live in water-deprived areas pay every god damned cent of the cost of your infrastructure boondoggles, including compensation for external costs such as environmental damage to areas other people live.

If we were to actually do that, I bet many of those people would choose to move out of CA real quick.

Comment: They did the right thing (Score 3, Funny) 535 535

It's easy to criticize the police over this, but what if this had turned out to be an authentic Stormtrooper? That blaster would have packed serious firepower that would outclass our current military capabilities. Even if the Stormtrooper had no bad intentions, I'm sure that Federal authorities would want to dissect that weapon to find out how it works and keep it out of the hands of the terrorists and/or unfriendly countries.

Comment: Re:Corollary: It's difficult to be "clever" in Jav (Score 2) 414 414

It is not difficult to be "clever" at all. Look at various "bean" frameworks. Use their object marshaling features. Throw in some of their aspect-oriented programming features.

Now you usually have a bloated, incomprehensible mess. Sure you can easily read any couple of lines of code in isolation. But the system as a whole is a huge pile of gratuitous redundant layers of abstraction and confusing action-at-a-distance creepiness.

Comment: The FTC's biggest concern (Score 1) 54 54

It was revealed that the FTC's biggest concern is Radio Shack's subterranean cache of over 35,000 tons of yellow slips of carbon paper dating as far back as the 1960s, which correlate names, addresses and phone numbers to detailed lists of discreet electronic components. Who knows what kind of embarrassments would ensue if all of those dots got connected with modern data mining techniques.

Comment: Re:Of course, there's this (Score 2) 176 176

And what do you think ALL THE PLANTS ON EARTH photosynthesise with?

They use the carbon given off by decaying plants and animals. They do not consume all the carbon dug up from geological deposits, and even if they did, they would give it back up as they decay. Redepositing that carbon into geological strata is an exceedingly slow process that has been totally overwhelmed by the rate of our mining it.

Comment: Re:Of course, there's this (Score 4, Informative) 176 176

None of those taxes begins to account for the lack of disposal fees for fossil fuels.

If all fossil fuel users were required to collect and safely sequester the CO2 that they're allowed to spew into the air free of charge, fossil fuels would not be even close to competitive with solar energy. As it stands, the rampant use of fossil fuels is saddling future generations with hundreds of $Trillions of remediation costs. It only looks cheaper because you're kicking the can down the road.

Comment: Re:Backup Generator replacement? Not so much (Score 1) 317 317

Ok, I'll grant that I could understand your first sentence. However, if it were really a problem, installing a heating loop under the array would fix the problem at the touch of a button. For the DIYer, some plastic tubing, antifreeze, and aquarium pump, and a 5 gallon tank of propane would do the job. I'll also point out that although it snows frequently, that's not typically a disaster. It's also only been 200 years since a mammoth earthquake that would, if it happened today, paralyze this nation for months. That's only three lifespans, so the odds of witnessing that again may not be as low as you assume.

Your entire second paragraph is an incomprehensible bowl of word soup. You seem to be advocating that 50 million people without gas hop in their cars and find a hotel in a different region of the continent.

Your last paragraph disregards the whole point of the damned thread: that you can recharge the batteries indefinitely without fuel. Even when keeping a dangerous amount of volatile gasoline on your premises, you get a couple days max of electricity generation, and as I pointed out, natural gas generators are no panacea either.

One person's error is another person's data.