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Comment Re:If I could abort child, I can do ANYTHING (Score 1) 316 316

What's the harm of sending them in to buy booze and smokes? Letting them partake would be harmful, and just smoking around them has proven to be harmful, but just buying them? If you're going to take kids away from their parents I want good solid reasons why the behavior is harming the kids.

Comment Re:Here's a thought... (Score 1) 316 316

Freedom of association, to the extreme you make it, has been proven to cause great unfairness and social problems. If you're running a business, you are legally prohibited from not hiring a person or not serving a person because of race.

Also, in the real world (i.e., ground level and up), you do not get a chance to convince landlords and employers that your Internet record is misleading. They discard your application and/or resume without talking to you.

Comment Re:Why Fight It? (Score 1) 132 132

Yeah, but I found the urban legend offensive. The fact that GGP thought I might be influenced by a stupid made-up story that would be obviously irrelevant anyway is an insult to my intelligence. If you're going to lie to try to convince me of something, give me a little credit and make it a plausible lie.

Comment Re:awkward! (Score 1) 180 180

So? I referred to people who are crucial in Linux development. You are referring to people like you. I can refer to my work in enabling efficient small-scale manufacturing, but the blunt truth is that, if I were to retire tomorrow, it would have an extremely minor effect on that or the world as a whole.

Computing in general would be a lot worse off without Linux in many ways. Even if you don't use Linux, you benefit from the general raising of the bar that happens when people try to do better than Linux. You probably wouldn't be as effective without Linus and the rest.

Comment Re:Sudden outbreak of common sense. (Score 1) 168 168

I'm an old math major, with a year of probability and a year of statistics under my belt. I have no misconceptions about the mathematics of coin flipping.

Given a fair coin, the chance of heads on each toss is 0.5, regardless of what has come before. You didn't specify a "fair coin", but rather a "coin". In that case, nine heads out of ten is statistical evidence that the coin isn't fair. (Realistically, we don't have fair coins. We can have coins pretty darn close to fair, but I think you'll find that getting a coin that lands on heads 0.5 +/- 0.000001 of the time is difficult.)

You exactly demonstrated the problem with overabstract reasoning and an unthinking belief in theoretical correctness.

Comment Re:Red Herring (Score 1) 300 300

No, the problems are harder to address. The easy thing is to have search engines remove the legally irrelevant information about person X from searches for X. Getting people to unsee information they've seen, or proving in court that a company used illegal information to deny somebody credit, is far harder.

In at least some cases, people have been successfully sued in the US for simply publicizing existing libel. In the case of false accusations, Google is doing exactly that. If the law says it is illegal to publicly associate certain information with a certain person, presumably to protect that person, then Google is violating that law. Google is apparently OK with following the law in the jurisdiction the law applies to.

The information is still out there on the net. It's just not available from one particular vantage. As far as censorship goes, that's minor.

Comment Re:Well, sure, but... (Score 1) 292 292

If enough people want food without GMOs, there will be labels on certain foods saying "No GMO!" and you'll be able to buy them. Just like there's enough people who want kosher food in the US that companies will specifically make and label it.

The ruling is that nobody can require GMO food to carry a label saying it's GMO, and I'm perfectly OK with that. There's lots of things in food that are known to actually hurt certain people that there are no specific label requirements for, and I'd much rather see one of those get selected for mandatory labeling rather than something that just panders to irrational fears with no basis of evidence.

Comment Re:Well, sure, but... (Score 1) 292 292

Why should the paranoids get the labels?

Look, I have a friend with a real problem with sulfites. This isn't hypochondria or speculation or paranoia. They don't put "SULFITES" on the front label. I have to read the ingredients list, and I have to know what I'm looking for. (If flour has iron in it, it's probably got sulfites, unless it's "reduced iron".)

Comment Re: Well, sure, but... (Score 1) 292 292

You can speculate about a lot of things. If I avoided anything I could speculate could kill me, I'd have to commit suicide.

Is there any reason to think that Monsanto is going to leave itself open to massive civil liability from introducing something that dangerous into the world? (I'm not arguing this on moral terms, since this is Monsanto, but corporations are sensitive to potential liability.)

Advertising is a valuable economic factor because it is the cheapest way of selling goods, particularly if the goods are worthless. -- Sinclair Lewis

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