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Comment: Re:Meanwhile... (Score 4, Insightful) 176

by caerwyn (#38627694) Attached to: China To Begin Submitting Air Pollution Reports

What is my point of this? You sit all smug in your computer chair or couch or wherever saying others should 'listen to you'. Guess what you sound like a twat who tells others what to do without realizing you yourself are part of the problem. Want to change peoples minds? Its simple, pollution sucks. People get that. "we might be changing the climate" will get you a yawn and no one will really care. But lets say 100% of everyone gets the point. What is the alternative? The current one on the table (and being implemented) is higher taxes. That helps very little and does not actually make things better. It just means those who can afford to will pollute will while you pick up the tab. As those same companies can afford it (due to many of them being regulated monopolies). And companies will just do what they always do. They will pass down the cost to the consumer. As guess what I can not buy my electricity from someone else I pay a higher price for no change. I need to get to work so I can buy food for my family (so I have a car). Without a radical remaking of our entire society nothing will change.

This is not strictly true. The point of taxes on carbon emissions is that it helps to reduce externalities- costs that party A incurs and party B must pay, without an actual economic link between them. For instance, power plants currently emit pollutants (including greenhouse gases). Those pollutants ultimately result in costs (health care cost increases, infrastructure development to deal with changing climate, environmental reclamation costs) that are not paid by the entity that reaps the benefit from incurring them - the power plant operators. By placing a tax on the polluting activities, we cause those entities to pay for the costs that they are incurring. That cost more fully reflects the actual cost of the good that they are providing- electricity produced from coal, which levels the playing field for alternative energy sources which do *not* incur such external costs. *That* is the point of such taxation- to *level* the playing field by actually making every pay for all of the costs that they incur to society.

Comment: Re:Don't you have anything better to do? (Score 1) 393

by caerwyn (#37505558) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Calculators With 1-2-3 Number Pads?

I know that there are those of us who like to learn, and therefore use efficient memory techniques, and that there are those who ridicule those of us who learn. On a website for geeks, I had expected to find the former, not the latter.

Some of us like to learn useful concepts, not memorize things that are either useless or better handled by machines. I don't know most of the telephone numbers that I use with any regularity, and I consider that to be a good thing, not an indication of someone who doesn't want to learn.

Comment: Re:Maybe a better candidate (Score 1) 594

by caerwyn (#36981100) Attached to: The Most Expensive One-Byte Mistake

They might be different in theory; they are not in practice. In addition, in Objective-C, C, and C++, NULL is, in fact, (void *)0L. This is not something that is likely to *ever* change, given the absolutely enormous body of code that assumes that (!pointer) is identical to (pointer == NULL); this is not something limited to x86.

Also, char *pointer = 0; being anything other than 0 is rubbish. There are systems for which 0 can contain valid data, and therefore you must be able to assign 0 to a pointer.

Comment: Re:For the Nth time now! (Score 1) 532

by caerwyn (#34954076) Attached to: Electronics In Flight — Danger Or Distraction?

Oh, I'm not opposed to the briefing at all. I just think that the content needs to be reviewed in light of current society (eg, how to fasten a seat belt).

As for the exits: you don't need a briefing for that if you have any experience- you'll see them as you find your seat. Again, a new flyer could use to have them pointed out, but that's not the part of the briefing that I'd object to.

Going the speed of light is bad for your age.

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