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Comment: Re:old tech (Score 3, Interesting) 165

by bjdevil66 (#46750309) Attached to: Reviving a Commodore 64 Computer Using a Raspberry Pi

While schools had Apple computers, many 40 somethings first cut our teeth with computers at home on the C64 or Vic-20. With the C64, I first saw a modem (300 baud) and connect to a BBS system, a floppy disk drive (5.25" - holepunched to use both sides), and compressed digital music (at a C64 club meeting someone had a 10 second snippet of compressed, digital music on a C64 - sounded like crap and took (the usual) 2 minutes to load, but it was a decade ahead of MP3s.)

It also had BASIC programming capabilities with the disk drives for storage. You could draw sprites/graphics, program songs, do basic word processing, etc. Save it on your floppy disk and you were set.

Finally, the C64 had great games that made the pre-NES home consoles like the Atari 2600 look like garbage. The game selection was big enough to where a lot of good games were eventually produced: Ultima III/IV/V (or Bard's Tale, Temple of Apshai, Sword of Fargoal) = World of Warcraft. Arcade/Adventure/Pinball Construction Kit(s) = Minecraft. Karateka/Yie Ar Kung Fu = every fighter game ever. Beachhead = a 2D Call of Duty. Other great games off the top of my head -- Mission Impossible, Raid Over Moscow, Summer/Winter Games (Epyx), Raid on Bungeling Bay, etc.

It was also our first exposure to pirated software trading and beating DRM (Fast Hack'Em, etc.). To play our pirated version of archon (a great cross of chess and 2-D shooter):

load"*",8,1 (,8,8)
sys 24832

The system is a fossil today, but it was great for its time... You just kinda had to be there.

Comment: Re:Sorry - Has to be posted (Score 1) 878

by bjdevil66 (#46508325) Attached to: Russian State TV Anchor: Russia Could Turn US To "Radioactive Ash"

Whether Romney was just lucky or not doesn't matter. The real problem is that the guy that won was so arrogant and clueless about Russia. And his administration has made multiple, big mistakes abroad. AND it probably doesn't help that they're appointing top campaign contributors as foreign ambassadors even if they know nothing about the country they'll be living in.

Seriously - They're running their foreign policy like a bunch of amateurs playing catch-up.

And yes - The GOP was really wrong to push for and lead the invasion of Iraq. It was a total waste of political capital, a trillion+ dollars, and the scarring of thousands of American soldiers' lives. The problem with that "I hate the GOP no matter what" argument, however, was that Romney was willing to stand on his own at times, and he was definitely not a Sarah Palin like candidate.

Comment: Sorry - Has to be posted (Score 2, Insightful) 878

by bjdevil66 (#46506873) Attached to: Russian State TV Anchor: Russia Could Turn US To "Radioactive Ash"

This CANNOT be posted enough. Obama was 100% wrong, and Romney was 100% right.

Call it sour grapes for the 2012 election, but the guy that lost saw the potential problems coming - and our current administration mocked him for it. And Romney haters mocked him online and in the media.

Bottom line: As of today, when it comes to international relations, the executive branch looks like it's being run today by an amateur - supported by amateurs, all living in the same intellectual bubble full of yes men.

Comment: Re:Religious ignorance. (Score 2) 529

by bjdevil66 (#46492813) Attached to: Religion Is Good For Your Brain

Communism wasn't a religion. Communism is just an evil mutation of a utopian society where everyone VOLUNTARILY shares their wealth with each other and cares for each other, regardless of what religious views were held by any of its occupants. Communist regimes (under the Soviet model), however, chose the single religious model of athiesm to use as a tool of oppression and control. I imagine that Lenin and his more sincere followers in 1917 had no idea what kind of evil would spring up in the wake of Lenin's death within a few years.

Comment: Re:Religious ignorance. (Score 1) 529

by bjdevil66 (#46492679) Attached to: Religion Is Good For Your Brain

Religion is powerful enough to compel mass murder, oppression, and dismissal of damning facts against your actions.

I think you meant to say that philosophical fascism, not religion, is powerful enough. Religion is a subset of philosophy, and any philosophy used to force an agenda on others and used to oppress those who don't conform is truly evil.

Philosophical, fascist atheists are just as capable of evil as intolerant religious people. See Stalin in the Soviet Union, as atheist of a state as there has ever been. I'd argue that Stalin was even more evil than Hitler. Millions upon millions were murdered, displaced, starved, and/or oppressed under his atheist regime.

The good news is that the majority of the world fails to follow religion as their religious books tells them to.

"Good news"? You clearly have no understanding of neither the content nor the meaning of religious texts such as the Bible, Torah, Koran, etc. If people followed the tenets of their scriptures, the world's problems would be solved so quickly that intellectuals would call it a modern-day miracle.

Comment: Re:Dead Babies (Score 1) 747

by bjdevil66 (#46483229) Attached to: Measles Outbreak In NYC

What would crank up the fear quicker would be some A-list celebrity's well-documented child dying of vaccinate-preventable disease. I'm not saying any names because that would be in really bad taste and I don't wish any harm on anyone like that, but I can think of quite a few children that the press, tabloids, and bloggers have covered extensively - and their untimely deaths would be even more dramatic...

Comment: Re:Cut them off (Score 1) 747

by bjdevil66 (#46483157) Attached to: Measles Outbreak In NYC

Whether you chalk it up to "the Constitution" or an almost religious-like refusal to admit they were wrong about autism/vaccinations, you can't force that kind of view that will be labeled as fascism by those who don't want them.

Like others have posted, the only force that will move these people now is watching loved ones they refused to vaccinate die in their own arms. (And it wouldn't surprise me that much if those people, in their grief, actually blame everyone else for their bad decision.)

Comment: Re:Where to draw the line. (Score 1) 267

by bjdevil66 (#46311983) Attached to: We Can Avoid a Surveillance State Dystopia

Yes, I am implying that Socialism is better over the long term. Although, it's still not good enough.

The people have to choose to give or the system will fail. Government-sponsored socialism, via taxation and regulation of lifestyles, is always going to fail over the long-term. This is because corruption, hypocrisy, fraud, dependency/laziness, etc. inevitably eat at its foundation.

Voluntary socialism, however, does work. We forget that it is ultimately the individuals that shape how happy we are - not any forced government or economic model. People give and feel good about themselves, encouraging them to give more. Those who receive are lifted out of poverty and eventually gain enough self-respect to move up (assuming social mobility is available in the economy). I know it sounds like it's straight out of an old Sunday School lesson from church to some, but it IS that simple.

(One could carry this to an even more extreme, basic truth - that the unadulterated basics of the Gospel of Jesus Christ is the answer to all of society's economic ills. Too many people, however, just see the words "Jesus Christ" or "Gospel" and are immediately repulsed - without any critical thought about its base principles. They start yelling about "freedom of religion", child molesting priests, hypocritical televangelists, "religion is the source of all war", anti-"God Hates Fags" rhetoric, "separation of church and state", weird religious cults, etc. Just getting to those basic truths about faith in God/yourself/others, hope, charity, honesty, the Golden Rule, etc. that would lead to happiness is surrounded by too many stumbling blocks.)

And economics is an attempt to quantify philosophy (with numbers and theories). Since religion is just a subset of philosophy - usually with an all-knowing, all-powerful deity or two mixed in, they are a lot alike - especially when you try to convince someone else that their Keynes/Marx/Greenspan economic theories are wrong.

Comment: Re:Duh - Not Private (Score 2) 152

by bjdevil66 (#46294967) Attached to: ICE License-Plate Tracking Plan Withdrawn Amid Outcry About Privacy

Yes, license plates are for identifying cars. The 4th Amendment, however, was preserved due to the sheer volume of cars out there. A government official (police, FBI, etc.) had to "manually" focus on a single car at a time when there was a reason to pay attention to it. The extra work required to track too many people at once protected the 4th amendment.

Today's tech, however, can now passively track everyone with no effort - which blows away that illusory wall between the 4th amendment and license plate tracking. The moment some government official decides that they're a "person of interest" (whatever that means to that official at that time), they have a practically infinite amount of data to use against them already.

Why am I a "privacy nut" for seeing this problem and talking about it?

More importantly, why are you not concerned with this overreach?

Privacy nuts are usually branded as paranoid against the government, but I submit that people who call us "privacy nuts" have their own deep seated and subtle paranoia of their neighbors. If one really thinks about it, why else would one allow the government to track everyone everywhere in their cars if they weren't worried about some "what if" scenario where the guy next door could be "evil" and could hurt them?

Comment: Re:We're the best country in the world!!! Woo!! (Score 1) 357

by bjdevil66 (#46275717) Attached to: US Plunges To 46th In World Press Freedom Index

Gay Agenda, Tax and spend liberal, Hostile...

Where in the hell did I use all of those right wing, catch phrases people use when they're usually too lazy to think for themselves and just chirp what some ratings whores like FoxNews personalities or Rush Limbaugh have said?

Put your preconceptions about what you may think Tea Party people are like for just a second, and consider this basic fact: The country is going into so much debt that the simple ability to build those roads, help the destitute, or even defend our country's borders from invaders will disappear when the government defaults in one form or another.

The unbalanced budget MUST stop, or economic forces will stop it for us - and NOBODY will like the end result of the latter - except the federal government's creditors, I suppose.

The Americans who worry about that are grouped in with the label "Tea Party", but that fear has NOTHING to do with racism, hating liberal ideologies, etc. It's just basic math - compounded interest, and spending more than you make. We're so spoiled as Americans that we assume that we're immune from collapse as an empire - and that's what we are and have always been - an economic and military powered empire. Maybe this is what happened to the Romans - maybe they got caught up in their Pompeii-style porn, betting on their version of fantasy football (gladiators), overbuilding their military but not wanting to actually serve in it ("let's pay someone else to fight for us"), etc.?

Comment: Re:We're the best country in the world!!! Woo!! (Score 1) 357

by bjdevil66 (#46270965) Attached to: US Plunges To 46th In World Press Freedom Index

Your quote in there makes it seem like the tea part is not extreme, but they are, very extreme....

Or maybe there are many who agree with most of what the Tea Party wants - balanced budget - and not some of the more ridiculous things a few crazies rant about ("Kill the EPA! End Obamacare now - even if there is no better alternative.. Obama is evil! Pull our troops out of everywhere - who cares what happens next! End ALL domestic intelligence gathering NOW, regardless of the implications!" Etc.)

The superior man understands what is right; the inferior man understands what will sell. -- Confucius