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Comment: Re:Funny... (Score 3, Insightful) 218

by Xonstantine (#35251468) Attached to: Last.Fm Founder Criticizes Apple Over Music Subscription Fees

Why should writing and releasing a single 3-minute song mean living wage for a year?

Exactly.

And lets say that same song was legally purchased and downloaded 20,000 times in a year for 99 cents each download, which is a demonstration of even more real commercial success than 20,000 plays. Even $20,000 isn't a living wage, assuming that the artists were getting 100% of that (and they won't be, of course). So the reality is, if your piece of shit band is only getting 20,000 plays a year, your band simply isn't commercially viable and you need to find a day job. No one owes you a "living wage" for producing a product no one else wants.

Comment: Re:Surely they can't be serious... (Score 1) 214

by Xonstantine (#34670818) Attached to: Record Set For World's Youngest Chess Champion

Physiologically, men are more powerful than women (on average, and at the higher end of the bell curve as well).

But when you have a sex ratio of 10 men to 1 women, even if they both average out the same, chances are the "best" will come out of the male distribution group. Just basic math.

As far as I can tell, having played chess at the amateur club level and played some really good young players (2100+), both boys and girls, there is no secret sauce in chess that resides in the gonads.

Comment: Re:Free speech? (Score 2) 467

by Xonstantine (#34604972) Attached to: Bank of America Cuts Off Wikileaks Transactions

You know moe, after your little insulting reply to my divest Israel comment, I was thinking of lighting you up (or down as the case may be) with my mod points.

But I actually agree with most of your other comments. In a quick reading, I can't decide whether or not you are liberal or libertarian, but on the off-chance you are liberal or left-leaning, I'd like to point out that the only dissenters in Raich v. Gonzales were from conservative members of the court (specifically, Thomas & Rehnquist, with the moderate O'Connor rounding out the dissent). Stevens, Souter, Ginsburg, and Breyer can almost always be counted on to be a vote for the statist agenda (unless it's intruding on abortion or homosexual activity). See Kelo v. New London for more of the same.

In any event, the Feds are going to come down like a hammer sooner or later on all of the states pushing their "Firearms Freedom Acts" and the SCOTUS will almost certainly uphold them doing so. Stare decisis is pretty well established, and if the growing of a few marijuana plants by a cancer patient who has never actually bought marijuana, and will never sell it can be somehow interpreted to be affecting interestate commerce, then it logically follows that a "Montana only firearm" will affect it as well, since the Federal government can argue that well that person would have otherwise bought a non-Montana made firearm. Incidentally, Thomas's dissent was pretty devastating in Raich v. Gonzalez. The Federal Government basically won the right to regulate anything and everything under the sun. Washing dishes...affects interstate commerce. Mowing your lawn? Same thing. We no longer have a government constrained by enumerated powers. We have an all consuming leviathan.

Comment: Re:Uh, how about butanol? (Score 1) 183

by Xonstantine (#34568850) Attached to: US Offers $30M For High-Risk Biofuel Research

Since butanol can be produced (an on an industrial scale certainly would be) from farm raised biomass... One suspects it's just a wee bit more complex than that.

But, knee jerk blaming the corporations and lobbyists is easier than actually trying to understand the issues.

Yes, butanol can be produced from farm raised biomass, same as ethanol. But as far as air time and subsidies go, it's ethanol, all the time. Therefore the logical conclusion is that the butanol lobby, such as it is, isn't nearly as effective as the ethanol lobby. To the point of not existing.

Comment: Uh, how about butanol? (Score 3, Insightful) 183

by Xonstantine (#34567136) Attached to: US Offers $30M For High-Risk Biofuel Research

Pros:
1) Burns in gasoline engines without modification
2) Can be transported in existing gas pipelines (does not emulsify water like ethanol does)
3) Higher energy content per gallon than ethanol, only a little less than gasoline
4) Can be produced in the same manner that ethanol is (ie, fermentation)

Cons:
1) Does not have a farm lobby attached to it

Comment: Re:Parent wan't a gerneralization. (Score 0) 265

by Xonstantine (#34542900) Attached to: Statistical Analysis of Terrorism

Terrorists worldwide won't suddenly throw their arms down and embrace us in a grand gesture of peace, love and understanding, numbnuts.

But it's a good argument for the divest-Israel crowd, isn't it? "The only reason why the Muslims hate us is Israel". Uh, no. Pretty much everything about our culture is abhorrent to them. Their religion commands them to make war on us until we submit. Israel has nothing to do with it.

"I prefer rogues to imbeciles, because they sometimes take a rest." -- Alexandre Dumas (fils)

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