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Comment: Re:Not possible (Score 1) 25

by khallow (#47423905) Attached to: IBM To Invest $3 Billion For Semiconductor Research

We only have semiconductors because of space.

Well, yea. But that stuff came from supernovae many billion years ago. We don't need space now to have semiconductors since that stuff, particular silicon won't go anywhere.

I suspect however that you are thinking that the US space program is responsible for semiconductors. That is nonsense. We would have them anyway even in the absence of contributions from any agency of the US including the Department of Defense (who was a far bigger contributor to IC R&D than NASA was by at least an order of magnitude). And the incentives to develop integrated circuits and CPUs would have resulted in pretty much what we have now, perhaps even further along since so the careers of so many intelligence,educated people were squandered on various white elephants between NASA and the US military.

Comment: Re: How about (Score 1) 369

Note that this is not a blind endorsement of government power. The number one tool my neighbors could use to oppress me (or I could use to oppress them), is the state government.

The federal government is the tool of choice these days. I don't go off of history when federal government power is at unprecedented levels of power and degree of intrusiveness. After all, it's not the state of California which is running the NSA (my example from before) or taking your coworker's money.

So you're arguing that, under a pro-corporate Constitutional reform, private for-profit corporations would be able to get police into using their powers to advance the interests of said private, for-profit corporations, and that this would be a good thing, because at least it wouldn;t be the FEDERAL government harassing people?

No. You made a claim about the Pinkertons. I showed how that claim was incorrect.

And how often have you heard of a Congressperson actually winning a dispute like that?

Not very much either way.

Your ignorance of how tax refunds work is showing.

The IRS won't send you your refund if any agency from a fairly long list (child support, Social Security, student loans, some state tax agencies, etc.) claims you owe them money. Disputing the matter with the IRS doesn't help because the IRS can't order these other agencies around.

I guess you just don't get it. Why should anything be on that list? I don't get to take your money in that way, why should anyone else get to via the agency of the IRS? As a US citizen, the federal government is in a unique position to control and seize your wealth.

Comment: Re:Talk Radio rhetoric (Score 1) 322

by khallow (#47420035) Attached to: Blueprints For Taming the Climate Crisis

here's your options:
--total freedom eventually leading to extinction
--some very mild controls that will improve health, boost the economy, create jobs, and possibly prevent extinction as well.

I see you're exercising your own freedom to be stupid. There is no "extinction" to be had from global warming. It doesn't follow from the actual climate research done (which predicts things such as modest increases in global mean temperature and sea levels) or the geological record (which records more extreme climate changes than what we see now and which we could survive readily though perhaps at a small fraction of our current population).

Now, I suppose climate changes could trigger a war using some novel technology which could drive the human race to extinction, but so could just existing (pretexts for war when you have superior firepower can be notoriously flimsy).

Finally, I think it's absurd to claim that the "controls" are "very mild". You're screwing with the energy infrastructure of the world and you'll have to force a bunch of unwilling people to go along (OPEC for starters). I also notice your last claim:

And I could build a decent case that that freedom (to be stupid) should be stricken because of hte burden you then place on everyone else.

What sort of "very mild controls" results in the "freedom to be stupid" getting stricken? That sounds more like totalitarian suppression of dissenting thought. But maybe getting jailed for having the wrong opinion is just a minor imposition. What do I know?

Comment: Re:Climate Change on Slashdot? Bring on the fun! (Score 1) 322

by khallow (#47419853) Attached to: Blueprints For Taming the Climate Crisis
I have some monkey poo for you too.

why do you think that? they work very well. They have even lead us to make new discoveries about the climate.


no, they doi not. Another baseless statement I suspect you have no clue how models work. in general, much less in any specific field.

So we have "new discoveries" and "baseless statements" based on your say-so only. Thanks for volunteering to be an example of the shit that the original poster was complaining about.

If you happen to know that sceinve is, please explain how adding more energy into the climate doesn't impact it.

How about you read the collected works of Marx first before you argue the taxonomy of butterflies? You are arguing a non sequitur. It doesn't make sense to argue that we should say, curb all human activity on Earth, because "adding more energy" "impacts" climate any more than a reading of Marx should be a prerequisite for studying butterflies.

Sure, if you change the energy budget of Earth, you will get some change in climate (maybe too minute to observe I might add). So what? You are still a long way from making a relevant argument to most of us. Sure, there are die-hards out there convinced that human activity can't cause measurable changes in climate. But your monkey poo won't change their minds.

Comment: Re:Not surprising. (Score 1) 686

by khallow (#47419581) Attached to: When Beliefs and Facts Collide

Admit? No part of the argument is the existence of species. There's no "admission" here. it was never in contention. But a species is no longer the best level to consider evolution at.

This was never in contention by anyone. That includes you and me.

That you observe the outcomes of gene selection at the species level rather then the gene level is a function of what your senses are capable of perceiving not what is actually happening. You also may notice that iron goes rusty, and to you that means it turns from grey to reddish brown. But what's really happening is happening at the molecular level.

Just because an observation can be made at a different, finer scale doesn't mean the observed effects at the current scale don't happen. This is a particularly bizarre claim to make especially since you grant the macroscopic effects in question such as species or iron changing color. The speciation of terrestrial organisms and the changing of color of a visible mass of oxidizing iron are real things - they happen even if the effect is caused by small scale processes.

Correct. But the way those high level features continue is through selection of those genes individually. There is no other level that selection works at.

The obvious counterexample here, which we've been discussing for the past few days, is the existence of species. There is no gene you can point to which specifies what species you are or which you can change to become a different, viable species. It is a property of a higher scale than the single gene level and has survived a billion years or more of natural selection.

I suppose species are a somewhat unreliable emergent property of large numbers of genes experiencing selection. Thus, the existence of species disproves your assertion.

I'm puzzled what was supposed to be wrong with my assertion in the first place. I didn't advocate reading Darwin because he had the perfect model of evolution from the atomic level on up. That is just a red herring.

But having said that, his arguments hold up remarkably well. For all the talk here of modern genetics, blurring of the distinction of species, etc, it remains that most work since has just been a fleshing out of the biological mechanisms by which his theory applies and the collecting of a vast amount of supporting evidence.

Comment: Re:DGW Dinsaurogenic Global Warming - crisis of ti (Score 1) 322

by khallow (#47419271) Attached to: Blueprints For Taming the Climate Crisis

And yet, a far milder jolt on their climate wiped up 95% of all life the likes of which the world took ages to recover from. The nature of any given climate is of academic interest; the problem is in how fast it changes...

So it doesn't matter if we end up with the climate of Venus or Mercury? We just need to take it real slow and we can adjust to arbitrarily huge climate changes? I don't buy it.

we've done in just 200 years what took a million then

There are two things to note. First, the CO2 content was at times around 2000 ppm which is five times current levels. So we haven't done in 200 years what took a million. We're still a millennium or two away from reaching those levels.

Second, the climate driver then was supposed to be volcanoes which are never known for their steady output. And we can't measure 250 million year old geological effects below a certain time scale resolution. So the above changes may have repeatedly happened over the course of days to a few years for hundreds of thousands or millions of years not a gradual change over a million years. But those spikes may be (and probably are) below the resolution of anything we can measure today.

Comment: Re:Dirty power (Score 1) 129

by Pharmboy (#47411463) Attached to: My most recent energy-saving bulbs last ...

Generally speaking, anything with lots of parts has more points of failures. Since CFLs all have ballasts, my experience has been that spikes does take a toll, by virtue of them dying after the incandescent is just a big resister. Yes, it can break but it is fairly tolerant by virtue of being tungsten and having no other parts. This is why I spend the money for the better CFLs. I've been using CFLs for well over a decade now. Been using them since the 90s, so not an expert, but I've owned a lot of them.

Comment: Re:Monster Volcano? (Score 1) 101

by khallow (#47410007) Attached to: Mapping a Monster Volcano

After all, no volcano in the world today can really compare to the potential of that one.

I disagree. I can think of two, just in the US - the Long Valley caldera in eastern California and the Raton hotspot of New Mexico. Further, the largest volcanic eruption of the past 20 million years occurred at Lake Toba in Indonesia. What is special about that site (perhaps a large, geologically "rapidly" replenished reservoir of high viscosity, high volatile content magma?) may occur elsewhere in the Ring of Fire and other subduction zones.

Comment: Re: How about (Score 1) 369

You do realize we tried the stronger corporations/weaker government model during the late 19th/early 20th centuries, and the result was not an absolute utopia of freedom.

Yes. It wasn't that bad. It amazes me how much power people are willing to hand governments to avoid the possibility of "sweat shops", "child labor", and other obsolete 19th century dangers.

Government contracts for the Pinkertons dries up after the Civil War, but private contracts made up for it. They had more agents then the Army had troops in the 1890s. You're just making shit up on their relationship with law enforcement.

Read some history on how Pinkerton operated. They didn't go after outlaws or bush unions without law enforcement support. It might just be a token deputy riding with a bunch of Pinkertons, but they had their backside covered.

As I said she is fighting the Social Security Administration (not the IRS) through her Congressperson. That does not require money up-front, which means she can actually do it; whereas in any dispute with a private corporation she only has a theoretical right to fight.

But at least in the latter case, she can get her money back. She could also beg that congressperson for any private disputes as well. That option doesn't vanish merely because the problem is private.

And as to my "reading comprehension", I guess you should have written something other than:

Back in the real world, the IRS ruling hurts my poor coworker, but she wasn't depending on that money to pay her bills because you can't depend on tax refund money to do that. The Feds refuse to finalize the tax Code until the very last minute, so you never know what your refund is going to be until you do your return.


and the IRS took her whole refund because Social Security had changed it's mind

Your story completely undermines your claim that it was just a dispute with Social Security.

Comment: Re:My question was not answered (Score 1) 57

by khallow (#47402457) Attached to: Interview: Edward Stone Talks About JPL and Space Exploration
Because it's not NASA's job to develop a drive for which there is no supporting evidence that it can work. Even if such a propulsion system is possible, you still need to be able to get into space to use it. And you need to know stuff like what NASA actually does in order to do anything useful in space.

At this time, it is more properly CERN's task to invest in FTL research and they're doing an admirable job of it.

"Catch a wave and you're sitting on top of the world." - The Beach Boys