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Comment Re:Real liberals need to stop this (Score 3, Informative) 662

One thing I have noticed is that while conservatives are uniformly more likely to be consistently hateful, if you trigger the ire of liberals, they win all the awards for being truly vitriolic.

Conservatives don't care what you think, as long as you do as you are told. Liberals don't care what you do, as long as you think as you are told.

Quote of the day. Reposting in case anyone missed it due to AC filters.

Comment Sorry, still not buying new definition of 'RACIST! (Score 1) 547

Your newly redefined cry of 'RACIST!!!!' depends on a mishmash of cultural and moral relativity that I don't subscribe to. Some cultures are better than others, despite the wishes of you and your huffpo buddy. You can tell this by how people vote with their feet. Hell, why don't you tell me a list of countries you'd like to live in, or could possibly tolerate. Then maybe we can discuss what kind of culture dominates in those countries.

While you consider that, I'll give you a few quotes in this area (in retaliation for that huffpo article):

At some point someone just has to tell these kids the truth: some civilizations are better than others. But that has nothing to do with you. You are not inexorably linked to your ancestors. You can appropriate all the good insights anywhere you find them. To deny yourself goodness, truth, and beauty wherever it is, you wind up diminishing your own dignity, treating yourself as if you were no more than your color or your genes.

- Anonymous

And this one from Thomas Sowell:

These and other dramatic and heartening rises of whole peoples came from doing things that were often directly the opposite of what is being urged upon less fortunate groups in the United States today. Far from painting themselves into their own little cultural corner and celebrating their "identity," these peoples sought the knowledge and insights of other peoples more advanced than themselves in particular skills, technologies, or organizational experience. It took centuries for the English to absorb the cultural advances brought by such conquerors as the Romans and the Normans and by such immigrants as the Huguenots, Germans, Jews, and others who played a major role in developing the British economy. Their early dependence on outsiders was painfully demonstrated when the Romans pulled out of Britain in the fifth century, in order to go defend their threatened empire on the continent, and the British economy and political structure both collapsed. Yet ultimately--more than a thousand years later--the British rose to lead the world into the industrial revolution and controlled an empire containing one-fourth of the land area of the earth and one-fourth of the human race.

Comment Re:Racism (Score 1) 547

Racist alarmism is much more fun.

When did Islam become a race? Oh, I remember, when it became a way for the Gutmensch* to dodge any serious discussion about cultures.

*New German word of the year:

"Gutmensch" was selected because, in connection with the current refugee crisis in Germany, it defames "tolerance and helpfulness as naïve, dumb and worldly innocent, as having a helper syndrome or as moral imperialism," the jury president, linguist Nina Janich, told the press.

Comment Ignorant trite from someone not ready to pay (Score 1) 97

That's what you get when you let your critical infrastructure design by entities that care more about profit than providing that critical infrastructure.

I'm eager to hear your discourse on capital expenditures in the electricity industry, and how increased redundancy would impact the electricity bill of the average homeowner and business. I assume you have an in-depth analysis, including a prepared power point slide, that includes extensive analysis in this area.

Or maybe you just wanted to say "HAHA Look how much smarter I am than EVERY utility in the country, and how much smarter I am than EVERY public utilities commission in the country. I'm not in a position to decide how limited resources are best spent, but I can make snarky comments about the people who bear this responsibility!"

Comment Re:Carbon free power (Score 1) 98

Umm, churnobyl blew in 86 (~30 years) and it is still very hot in the core, the hospital that treated the victims, and several other places. Workers still wear dosemeters. So feel free to get a job as part of the cleanup there. Everyone has a favorite source of energy that thinks it is clean as a whistle. The ugly truth is they are all disruptive to nature and there are too bloody many humans with more popping out all the time who need(want) energy and nature is having trouble restoring balance.

How many Reactors comparable to the RMBK-1000 did anyone outside the Soviet Union build? Zero. You know why? No, you don't, otherwise you wouldn't have posted the rubbish you did.
The Soviets, in the nuclear arena as well as several others, were special little monsters, who did many, many things that no one would want to emulate.

Comment Well, use a passport. Unless the IRS takes it. (Score 5, Informative) 428

If the IRS says you owe more than $50,000 in unpaid taxes, the State department will revoke your passport. No judge, no evidence involved. Just a 'certification.'
We all know how much an IRS agent will be punished for 'mistakenly' certifying that someone who displeased the wrong politician will be punished: not at all. Essentially, your right to move freely can be arbitrarily revoked by the IRS- internationally by clear purpose of the statute, and internally (within the United States) in some cases.

Comment 'Unsuccessfully fought" != "Idly watching" (Score 3, Informative) 139

Bush didn't sit idly by. From a 2008 article:

Bush's first budget, written in 2001 — seven years ago — called runaway subprime lending by the government-sponsored enterprises Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac "a potential problem" and warned of "strong repercussions in financial markets."

In 2003, Bush's Treasury secretary, John Snow, proposed what the New York Times called "the most significant regulatory overhaul in the housing finance industry since the savings and loan crisis a decade ago." Did Democrats in Congress welcome it? Hardly.

"I do not think we are facing any kind of a crisis," declared Rep. Barney Frank, D-Mass., in a response typical of those who viewed Fannie and Freddie as a party patronage machine that the GOP was trying to dismantle. "If it ain't broke, don't fix it," added Sen. Thomas Carper, D-Del.

Unfortunately, it was broke.

In November 2003, just two months after Frank's remarks, Bush's top economist, Gregory Mankiw, warned: "The enormous size of the mortgage-backed securities market means that any problems at the GSEs matter for the financial system as a whole." He too proposed reforms, and they too went nowhere.

In the next two years, a parade of White House officials traipsed to Capitol Hill, calling repeatedly for GSE reform. They were ignored. Even after several multibillion-dollar accounting errors by Fannie and Freddie, Congress put off reforms.

In 2005, Fed chief Alan Greenspan sounded the most serious warning of all: "We are placing the total financial system of the future at a substantial risk" by doing nothing, he said. When a bill later that year emerged from the Senate Banking Committee, it looked like something might finally be done.

Unfortunately, as economist Kevin Hassett of the American Enterprise Institute has noted, "the bill didn't become law, for a simple reason: Democrats opposed it on a party-line vote in the committee, signaling that this would be a partisan issue. Republicans, tied in knots by the tight Democratic opposition, couldn't even get the Senate to vote on the matter."

Had they done so, it's likely the mortgage meltdown wouldn't have occurred, or would have been of far less intensity. President Bush and the Republican Congress might be blamed for many things, but this isn't one of them. It was a Democratic debacle, from start to finish.

Comment Pass the bong, you've had too many puffs. (Score 1) 295

Either that or barter with something infinitely more valuable - information.

What information would that be, and why would anyone on Earth want to pay for that knowledge to be developed on Mars?
Face it, any trip to Mars will be an expensive ego trip for the nation or nations that pull it off. I'm not saying we shouldn't do it, only that we should be realistic about the fruits of such a trip. The biggest thing they'll learn is 'How to live on Mars', and that information can't be 'sold' to people on Earth.

Comment Re:Should? Yes. Could? No. (Score 4, Informative) 295

Once it becomes self sufficient, it will rebel anyway. Nobody could afford to send a tax enforcement and collecting rocket. And there's no way in hell any self-respecting Martian would vote for any of the current Earthican candidates for president - it's not like they could be represented by an off-worlder.

Nope, they should just plan for a 100% independent planet from Landing Day onwards. Their interactions with Earth should be through trade negotiations and contracts, just like any sovereign nation.

Trade negotiations? It's unlikely that Mars has any material worth hauling back to earth, and there's nothing that could be made there cheaper than on earth. Or even the moon. There will be no 'trade.' As for being 'independent', there's no way even the best planned and equipped mission could make it past 10 years without equipment & material from earth.

No, in the best-case scenario, any Mars outpost will be a massive money pit for nations and corporations on earth for a good 50-100 years. That's about the time you would need to build the ridiculous infrastructure and industrial base required to live independently on Mars. I wouldn't count on anything more than a token presence on Mars in our lifetimes.
There wouldn't be any point of 'independence' until the colony could support itself anyway. Interpersonal squabbles would have to be settled largely locally in any case. There would be no land and little personal property to argue over. Crimes might require the input of legal professionals on earth to adjudicate- no one's going to waste money sending lawyers into space, and the people paying the bills might take offense if the locals just start 'airlocking' the troublesome. There would also be no 'market' to tax or manage for that first 50-100 years. 'Independent from landing day onwards' is a silly pseudo-western sci-fi fantasy. There's no long-term survival on this frontier without a steady stream of expensively shipped parts from Earth. 3-d printing isn't going to keep a colony running, even if they could source the raw material on Mars. As for sourcing the raw materials on Mars, can you imagine establishing a mining operation?

It's simple. If the 'Independent' Martians piss off the people paying the bills, they're just going to say "The return rocket is fueled. It's right where you left it. We're not sending anything else your way. We suggest you perform an inventory and make your decision soon."

Comment Re:Except that it's true sometimes (Score 1) 365

The first example that comes to mind is when France allowed Germany to remilitarize the rhineland. Germany was weak at the time, and any pushback from France would have crushed the Wehrmacht and resulted in the overthrow of Hitler. (Crushing the Wehrmacht wouldn't have even been necessary, they would have retreated if given ANY opposition. )
The militarization of the Rhineland was specifically prohibited after World War 1 because it was an important industrial area, the kind you need to secure if you're going to build up your military for war. Hitler correctly estimated that France's leadership (those 'peacemakers') would not act if Germany established a garrison there. In subsequent years the German military was re-established as a mighty force that later conquered France.
Hitler made it so far because European leaders at the time repeatedly appeased his belligerence instead of saying 'No, you can't go around conquering neighbors based on flimsy reasons' (given by Goebbels or Goering, described in Barsteward's post). The Versailles Treaty and Locarno pact had militarily weakened Germany as intended; Hitler tossed those agreements aside, built up his military and conquered neighboring countries. European 'peacemakers' did nothing until the situation escalated so far that it was obvious to EVERYONE that Hitler would not stop with 'just one more country under his boot.' By that time, the only solution was World War 2, and millions died.
German generals repeatedly testified that Hitler made bold moves while initially being extremely weak, and that pushback at any number of early points would have resulted in Hitler's overthrow and the prevention of WW2. No pushback came from the European Allies until Germany had regrown it's military might.

Comment Except that it's true sometimes (Score 1) 365

All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked, and denounce the peacemakers for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same in any country."

by: Hermann Goering :- (1893-1946) Commander-in-Chief of the Luftwaffe, President of the Reichstag, Prime Minister of Prussia and, as Hitler's designated successor, the second man in the Third Reich. [Göring]

I'd like to point out that in World War 2, countries were being attacked, and peacemakers repeatedly exposed their country to danger, and thereby fell under Germany's boot. (Some of those peacemakers didn't have a whole lot of patriotism, either.) Germany could have been stopped at low cost several times in the late 1930's, but your vaunted 'peacemakers' held onto their illusions for too long- and millions died.

Comment Are you not amused? Is this not what you wanted? (Score 2, Insightful) 365

Trump's playing by the rules Obama set, plus a few of his own.
Trump's rules include a fairly standard negotiating tactic- demand 3x what you want, so when the dust settles, you've got about what you wanted. He's also 'assuming the sale.' I don't wish to see him as president, but he's giving a (admittedly bombastic) voice to legitimate concerns many Americans have. The American left is used to being able to shout down politically inconvenient discussions by shouting "RACIST!", Trump simply says 'F you' and moves on. People love that.
As for following Obama's rules, I'll just quote a recent article: (Paywalled; my apologies)

Mr. Obama doesn’t need anyone to justify his actions, because he’s realized no one can stop him. He gets criticized, but at the same time his approach has seeped into the national conscience. It has set new norms. You see this in the ever-more-outrageous proposals from the presidential field, in particular front-runners Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump.

Mrs. Clinton routinely vows to govern by diktat. On Wednesday she unveiled a raft of proposals to punish companies that flee the punitive U.S. tax system. Mrs. Clinton will ask Congress to implement her plan, but no matter if it doesn’t. “If Congress won’t act,” she promises, “then I will ask the Treasury Department, when I’m there, to use its regulatory authority.”

Mrs. Clinton and fellow liberals don’t like guns and are frustrated that the duly elected members of Congress (including those from their own party) won’t strengthen background checks. So she has promised to write regulations that will unilaterally impose such a system.

On immigration, Mr. Obama ignored statute with executive actions to shield illegals from deportation. Mrs. Clinton brags that she will go much, much further with sweeping exemptions to immigration law.

For his part, Mr. Trump sent the nation into an uproar this week with his call to outright ban Muslims from entering the country. Is this legally or morally sound? Who cares! Mr. Trump specializes in disdain for the law, the Constitution, and any code of civilized conduct. Guardrails are for losers. He’d set up a database to track Muslims or force them to carry special IDs. He’d close mosques. He’d deport kids born on American soil. He’d seize Iraq’s oil fields. He’d seize remittance payments sent back to Mexico. He’d grab personal property for government use.

Mr. Obama’s dismantling of boundaries isn’t restrained to questions of law; he blew up certain political ethics, too.

Comment Awww, aren't they precious? (Score 1) 676

In this very relevant prank, some jokers put a Koran cover on a bible, then read out various passages and asked random passers-by to comment on them.
As I'm sure you can imagine, hilarity ensues

That's cute. But when people 'vote with their feet', it's away from majority Muslim countries, and often towards majority Christian nations. Why do you suppose that is?

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