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Comment: Re:Wait! (Score 1) 200 200

Actions have persistent consequences?

I didn't realize that.... I thought we were entitled to always get forgiveness or at least a do-over if we needed it, no matter what we did?

Signed,
All of modern culture.

Modern culture? Isn't that the core message of Christianity, which is around 2000 years old? And at least some parts of Judaism can also be interpreted that way - Jubilee, sacrifice to pay off sins, etc.

Comment: Re:Why can't this be the law everywhere? (Score 1) 200 200

The Unions were a necessary phase in worker's rights, but now they are holding us back and they need to go away and be replaced by rights for all workers. If the Union leaders spent half as much effort to raise the minimum wage on a meaningful schedule as they do on padding their own pockets I might feel differently.

If unions are obsolete, what does it matter what they spend their time on? They aren't preventing you from lobbying for those rights, are they?

Comment: Re:Huh (Score 2) 200 200

A history of sexual predation should never be erased from the public memory. I don't give a rip if this particular guy is "living a new life" -- if your brain is broke in such a way as to be attracted to kids then you should no more be allowed to walk the streets than a lion who thinks kids are tasty.

The difference between lions and humans is that lions can't reconsider their life, while humans can. So it comes down to the risk: what are risking if we trust this person to be changed? What are we risking if we don't?

But perhaps the risk is too high in the case of child molesters, or we simply decide they deserve to suffer. In that case, that needs to be spelled out explicity in the form of a life sentence. Pretending the sentence is, say, 5 years while letting the "unofficial" system inflict a de facto life sentence is dishonest and against the rule of law. Society should have the balls to admit its own true character to itself and then change if it can't live with it.

Comment: Re:Competent Authorities (Score 1) 128 128

He's shown wikileaks is about his ego, not truth.

Right. So did he lie?

Yes. Repeatedly and publicly (ex: his acceptance of bail conditions before fleeing justice), yet somehow for the true believers like you, every instance can be argued away.

Read the original quote. Notice how it talks about Wikileaks not being about truth. The issue is not whether Assange has ever told a lie in his life (because everyone has, and frankly it doesn't matter except for a smear campaign), it's whether the leaks he published on Wikileaks are lies.

Sure, not sharing your messianic opinion of Assange and wanting him to be judged like a normal person is capitulating...

Right. So do you think a normal person would be judged like this for not wearing a condom? Because that is what the Swedish lawsuit is nominally about.

But ultimately, what does it matter? Even if you proved mathematically that Assange is the Devil himself, that still wouldn't change the fact that Wikileaks merely unmasks the sins of the powerful. If you have nothing to hide, you have nothing to fear, right?

Comment: Re:Competent Authorities (Score 1) 128 128

First off, thats a request even if you continue your typical bullshit lying Assange.

Speaking of bullshit and lying...

The only reason he's not in jail in Sweden already is because Ecuador feels like trying to be a dick to the US.

So you agree that it's the US, not Swedish law, that wants him imprisoned and made an example of? Because your assertion doesn't really make sense otherwise.

Whether or not Assange is personally admirable or even likable, it's the US and its allies who're the villains in this story. Wake up and see the skulls on your caps, or they'll be the only thing you'll be remembered by, since they'll take over everything you do, and then get you killed.

He's shown wikileaks is about his ego, not truth.

Right. So did he lie?

He's shown he thinks he's above the law and that he thinks EVERYONE else is corrupt and out to get him.

And you're proving him right.

He's a douche, so much a douche that even France thinks he's a douche. How sad do you have to be when even France doesn't capitulate?

But France is capitulating, again, to the skull-caps.

Comment: Re:App-A-Holics anonymous (Score 1) 109 109

As a human being, I'm the highest power known to fucking exist. As we all are.

Except for market forces. Those certainly seem to be beyond the control of mere mortals. For that matter, laws of nature not only determine your environment, but through evolution your entire being: you want things you've evolved to want. Your main advantage as a human is that the process is much quicker with cultural rather than biological evolution, and your culture-derived traits can be updated during your lifetime.

And one of the things people have been evolved to want is to get high. That's not limited to humanity, but can be found in animals so low as bees. Such a widespread tendency strongly suggests this is not mere accident, but reflects some inherent aspect of the universe - a "higher power" - but even if it's not, it's definitely a pattern of human existence. Some people once called this particular power Dionysos. Whether it has an ego - whether it's what we'd call a "person" - is irrelevant to someone caught in its grip. Whether breaking such a grip throuh sheer willpower is possible depends mainly on how strong it is, but often requires help from another higher power, which can range from perception of divine power to fear of death to the team spirit of a support group. Heck, getting chewed out by your boss - an agent of the employer, itself in turn an agent of the Invisible Hand - for turning up hungover might be enough in some cases.

Comment: Re:if that's true, (Score 1) 477 477

What is even more interesting is that it apparently automatically accepts any terms of use and provides passwords to web-based WiFi access logins, which could create some interesting legal situations (did you really accept the terms, and are you logging in with someone else's username/password)?

Did you really accept the terms if you clicked past the legal boilerplate without reading it? Because in the digital world, that's how things work. In theory, you can read and consider the consequences of the terms of use of every single service and program you use, but in practice that's a far too onerous requirement. So if your question is actually meaningful - if those "terms of use" are legally binding on the user - then the legal system is going to implode.

Comment: Re:Back Door (Score 0) 56 56

Can some GOP voting admirer of the Cuba embargo please tell me what is the purpose of maintaining it 30 years after the end of the cold war? Do yoy really think the Cubans yearn to have the Batista elite that fled to Miami back?

The obvious answer is: to get the vote of that Batista elite.

A deeper reason is likely that, no matter what it cost it, Cuba is a small country that succesfully defied the USA and went its own way. Empires can be unbelievably petty sometimes. And the ideologies riding them have all the tender neighbourly love of religious fanaticism without even the hypothetical possibility of judgement to curb the worst excesses. Those ideologies need to see any dissenters brought low to secure themselves, to kill off even the very idea that there might be a workable alternative. Because as soon as there is, their offers are no longer ones you can't refuse. Hence the continued attempts to demonize Communism, despite it being unlikely any idea could had succeeded any better in the broken ruins of Tsarist Russia. Burger-flippers are already talking about a living wage; imagine if they cast off the idea that they're less valuable than Donald Trump or Darl McBride and started demanding an actual fair share rather than beg for a bit more table scraps.

The GOP is heavily invested in both US national pride and state religion (Capitalism), and Cuba pissed on both.

Comment: Re:Profit over safety (Score 1) 127 127

And doesn't making government responsible trade one problem (deliberately cutting corners for profit) for another (stifling, inattentive bureaucracy, undermotivated employees)?

It's precisely the motivation that's the problem. A private company has every incentive to cut staff and whip the remaining ones into working harder, which of course increases the chances of an accident. Safety is not cost-effective except in hindsight, and at that point Joe CEO has already cashed his bonuses. As well as he should, after all it's not his fault his underlings interpreted his constant "motivational" measures as meaning they should cut corners to keep their jobs, right?

Also, the only known ways to run a large organization are charismatic dictatorship and stifling bureaucracy. Of these, one is creative and innovative and the other implements and enforces every rule exactly as written. Which one of these sounds like a better match for a nuclear plant?

Comment: Re:A corrupt company stuggling. Boo hoo. (Score 4, Insightful) 132 132

No employer is impressed by a degree from these degree factories because they know the "schools" are third rate at best.

To be fair, most employers are also third rate at best and will end up staffed with third-rate employees because first-grade ones require first-grade pay and job. It's the pathological refusal to admit mediocrity is okay that causes the whole student debt crisis, since companies dream of being the next Google without any intent to invest anything towards that. It also leads to a cynical workforce that ignores even sensible corporate policies due to having witnessed megalomania and utter disconnect from reality too often.

Work all too often resembles an absurd farce where everyone lies, everyone knows everyone lies, everyone knows that everyone knows that everyone lies, and so on (my personal pet peeve is "zero incidence culture", where no incident is acceptable, thus people wait until work is finished before going to see a doctor if they get hurt to avoid getting punished for costing management their safety bonuses, leading to more sick days and sometimes mortal danger). They go through the motions anyway, since it's a kind of ritual meant to give something that theoretically exists only as legal fiction a palpable presence. The problem is, that presence is all too often heavy and oppressive, a kind of vampire sucking life out of its victims to sustain its own.

Comment: Re:Umm... (Score 1) 153 153

Also, why do we care what a former biologist, now sci/tech article writer for the WSJ has to say about technology-related education? Is there some connection that I'm missing?

Wall Street dreams of coding to become yet another minimum-wage unskilled job. It probably will, simply because coding isn't all that difficult, just tedious, and as computers continue getting everywhere programming will ultimately become like literacy is now.

Comment: Re:If you're using GPL code, you have no choice (Score 3, Insightful) 164 164

Project Gutenburg would be a counter-proof.

Well, no. The issue is whether code - or any other copyrighted work - will ever enter public domain. Mickey Mouse Protection Act says it won't, and Project Gutenbert doesn't contradict that.

Not that it matters: copyright law has almost no legitimacy whatsoever, so it simply gets ignored despite draconian punishments. The whole concept of property law seems to simply be incompatible with the digital realm, consequently various message boards and other sites depending on user-generated content basically operate as communist utopias: everyone contributes whatever they can, the results are free for everyone to use at their leisure, and even personal glory isn't an issue, at least in anonymous messageboards. That's right: aside from its current immaturity, Anonymous is pretty much a model Marxist collective.

Funny, isn't it? Capitalism won the Cold War, but its natural development is now leading to Communism because that maximizes production in the Information Age. It wasn't a good model for industrial production, but as that keeps getting automated and focus shifts on coordination and cultural production, it turns out hierarchies simply get in the way. So nominally communist countries were arranged like giant corporations, while the new organizational model everyone's learning growing up now is "contribute according to your abilities, enjoy other people's contributions freely".

I wonder if this is why neoliberalism has been so fashionable lately: it's the struggle of a fading system to maintain it's dominance rather than be relegated to handling just a small subsection of total economy?

Comment: Re:"Are" or "could be"? (Score 3, Informative) 104 104

Somebody got drunk and noisy, so what?

So your business is causing a disturbance that extends to my property. The noise and drunks are basically waste products of your business; you don't get to dump them on my lawn.

People living in those houses never drink? Never get noisy?

Sure they do, and when they do, the police comes to take the criminal scum away. But that doesn't work when you have a whole new customer lined up for the next night, and another one for the next, and another one...

Are hotels covering tourist behaviour outside of hotel premises?

Hotels are subject to zoning laws which generally put them into commercial districts, precisely for this reason.

You are full of shit, just like this entire case.

No, I'm simply defending my property rights. The hotels are defending their right to equality before law. The only one full of shit here is you, even by your own standards.

You're at Witt's End.

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