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Comment: Re:*Really*? What do they expect to defend against (Score 3, Insightful) 391

by jazzkat (#34180938) Attached to: Real-Life Gadgets For Real-Life Superheroes

Ruke,

You're not incredulous at all. Let me start by suggesting that you read the links I provided above - those were all cases where civilians who were armed were able to protect their lives with their firearms. The most recent research by the FBI indicates that there are many, many more incidents - as many as hundreds per day - where the mere display of a firearm by an "intended victim" makes a criminal change his mind very quickly. A taser does not have the same "scare factor" as a firearm.

I can't speak in generalizations about concealed carry permit holders, but I can talk about those whom I know. When you get a license to carry a lethal weapon, your attitude and manner changes. You look to avoid dangerous situations. You don't let stuff bother you so much any more. But most importantly, you become FAR more aware of your surroundings. The posters in this threadlet who indicated that a firearm won't help you much in a mugging are correct to a certain extent - someone who surprises you by jumping out and demanding money at gunpoint is a bad situation. But you tend to watch people a lot more, on the street, to ascertain if they are a threat or not... you look for people hiding, etc. So those surprises are probably less likely to happen to you.

You could make a conscious effort to have the same kinds of mannerisms without carrying a firearm - and that's a great way to conduct yourself even if you don't want the responsibility of having a deadly weapon on you.

Comment: Re:*Really*? What do they expect to defend against (Score 1) 391

by jazzkat (#34180160) Attached to: Real-Life Gadgets For Real-Life Superheroes
"A taser will still knock someone out, even if they're carrying an assault rifle."

Really? How do you propose to get close enough to tase someone without getting shot? If you're in a situation where you have to get away from a threat with a firearm, the ideal situation is to retreat or hide so they are no longer a threat. But if you're forced to defend yourself, a taser won't allow you to defend against a firearm unless the firearm is empty.

And also keep in mind that the modus operandi is *not* "shoot anyone who gives me trouble". The modus operandi is "escape from danger if possible, but if you are forced to defend yourself against a deadly outcome then at least you have means to do so."

Comment: Re:*Really*? What do they expect to defend against (Score 1) 391

by jazzkat (#34179596) Attached to: Real-Life Gadgets For Real-Life Superheroes
Sorry to spoil your generalization, publiclurker, but men in my family have penises. We don't need enhancements.

Think of it this way. While I never wish this on anyone, let's talk again after you've been mugged at gunpoint. Then you'll see clearly where a firearm is not a penis poofer but a device that allows you to choose your life over that of your mugger's.

Do you think this guy was thinking about the size of his penis when he defended himself against a mugger who shot at him?
http://www.examiner.com/self-defense-in-national/armed-citizen-shoots-a-violent-mugger-self-defense

How about this guy? Do you think he needed a bigger penis or a way to defend himself against a hoodlum?
http://www.rep-am.com/articles/2010/04/28/news/local/479034.txt

Or this one?
http://www.kc3.com/self_defense/Megerle.htm

Please don't project your own phallic challenges when you're trying to make a snide remark and inaccurate generalization.

Comment: *Really*? What do they expect to defend against? (Score 1, Troll) 391

by jazzkat (#34179150) Attached to: Real-Life Gadgets For Real-Life Superheroes
As I read this article, I was like... *really*?

What do these, uh, "heroes" hope to do or defend against? Do they *really* think that slingshot is useful for *anything* in an urban setting?

What's going to happen when one of them encounters someone who is really serious, and the "hero" finds himself on the wrong end of a .45? You'll need some serious shielding and defensive moves for that. A taser or even a light weapon won't work here. And then if you use your 95mw laser to blind the perpetrator he will come back and sue you for all you're worth.

Or what happens when there's an undercover cop making an arrest and one of these yahoos mistakes what he's seeing and tries to "intervene"?

Seriously people... the best thing to do nowadays is to get a concealed carry permit, carry a weapon you've practice on, and avoid trouble at all costs. Stuff like this is just ridiculous.

Comment: Re:is it really cheaper to live in the boonies? (Score 2, Informative) 470

by jazzkat (#33899166) Attached to: IT's Last Hope — a Job In the Boonies?
I've lived in the boonies for the last 7 years or so... and most of what you noted varies greatly by place. In my case it isn't as bad as you note.

However: "crappy medical care. big cities have the good hospitals and doctors" +1 you are correct about this!

The hospitals in rural areas - even those in cities with populations of ~20k - tend to kill people for the stupidest reasons... the kill rate is far higher than that of big city hospitals. And since the coroner is a doctor who works for the hospital, they falsify the death certificate as to time and cause of death, so as to not reflect badly on the hospital.

Don't ask me how I know this.

Comment: Re:Looks like a mixed bag (Score 1) 470

by jazzkat (#33899022) Attached to: IT's Last Hope — a Job In the Boonies?
You think 1.5hr is a long commute? I do that 3x a week. Only because my employer is funny about people working remotely more often than that.

But where I live it's just like Cape Cod. I have a view of the lake off my back deck, an exquisitely starry sky at night, my choice of high speed internet, and 2,800 sf is less than a grand a month in mortgage + taxes. So yeah, it's worth it.

Comment: Re:This might be a little uncomfortable... (Score 1) 284

by jazzkat (#33229962) Attached to: Can Twitter and Facebook Deal With Their Dead?
Dominion,

My wife passed away about 46 days ago.

There are no words to describe how monumentally disturbing and generally fucked up your idea is. I sincerely hope that you never have to go through what I'm going through now - but if you ever do, you will go back and purge any semblance of this "electronic impersonator" idea from your mind.

Families of the deceased want to remember their family members AS THEY ACTUALLY EXISTED. A fucked-up markov chain impersonation would not come anywhere close to doing what you think it will... instead, it will cause pain, further un-needed grief, and lots of other feelings, the nature of which you have NO FUCKING CLUE ABOUT unless you've lost someone close to you. I'm not talking about a "friend", I'm talking about someone with whom you've intimately spent a third of your life.

My advice: don't.

Comment: DO NOT ATTEND AN ONLINE SCHOOL... (Score 1) 1

by jazzkat (#33039710) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Your online education experience
...UNLESS that school is a real, not-for-profit university.

Most of the traditional online schools - Phoenix, DeVry, Walden, ITT, Strayer, etc. are FOR-PROFIT CORPORATIONS. Their main goal in existence is not to educate students but to make money.

They will force you to take classes you don't need... and when you try to test out of those classes, you will flunk the test, because the tests are designed to flunk everyone.

As far as registration and class scheduling... they will not correct errors that will cause you to have fines, late fees, etc. and they will hide behind "federal law" when you try to get a refund.

My late wife had $20k in student loans and nothing to show for it because a major "university" had consistent billing and scheduling errors and could not get their act straight. The only way I could get anyone to actually do anything, was to look up the home addresses of the board of directors, CEO, VP's, etc. via property searches in the home states, and send certified letters to the home addresses. Even then all we got were promises that they would "look into the problems" and... nothing.

The quality of the education is a joke. I spent two trimesters at DeVry and then got out when I saw the quality of students they had there. I spend all day cleaning up screwups caused by DeVry grads. I won't hire anyone with a DeVry degree unless they demonstrate abilities far above the other candidates... but such people usually get the hell out of DeVry once they realize its true nature.

My late wife was in a graduate program at one of the online schools. We were shocked at the low quality of students admitted to the program... they couldn't write, logic was foreign to them... and these people were in for *masters* degrees.

It's all about money and moving bodies through a complete program with these schools. They don't care that their "graduates" end up causing problems because the grads aren't qualified to do the work for which they went to school. They don't care that they promise major salary at the end of the degree and the grads end up with burger-flipping jobs because the hiring companies know how bad these schools are. A burger flipping job and $60k in student loans sucks, or so I've heard.

Find a real, non-profit University that offers online courses and you'll have a better experience. They are out there!

Comment: Re:Nice to them (Score 3, Informative) 157

by jazzkat (#32551376) Attached to: MySQL Outpacing Oracle In Wake of Acquisition
This is because you're using MySQL to develop on. MySQL allows all manner of illegal hostnames and other bad programming practices in the name of "making things easier" for people who don't know any better.

If you developed using Postgres, or another more compliant database, most of these problems would go away.

Comment: Re:Ghost of the time? (Score 1) 659

by jazzkat (#32412990) Attached to: Students Show a Dramatic Drop In Empathy
Reading comprehension fail!

"It is NOT an acceptable response in most Western 1st world nations to shoot and kill someone for a B&E under any circumstances. And if you're going to mention that they might be armed and its better to shoot first"

Here's what I said: "Hopefully, neutralization occurs when the burglar realizes you are armed and then flees - in this case, you would not shoot a fleeing burglar."

If you break into my house and I display a gun, you have a choice. You can run away, and I won't shoot you - I don't shoot a fleeing burglar. You can stay, but if you stay you've told me that you are intent to kill me, and I must defend my life.

Since I do not resort to ad-hominem attacks, I will say how strange it is to me to hear people who are not in the US say that they would not defend themselves if there was an intruder in their home, intent upon killing them.

Comment: Re:Ghost of the time? (Score 1) 659

by jazzkat (#32410776) Attached to: Students Show a Dramatic Drop In Empathy
It's interesting, Xenna, that what happens when you allow people to drive cars, is things like this:

http://www.10tv.com/live/content/local/stories/2010/05/31/story-upper-sandusky-three-dead-in-crash.html?sid=102

The folks in your article obviously have fundamental problems with the way they handle themselves - probably the same kinds of folks who would run someone off the road with a vehicle.

"If I was a bad guy and I had bad intentions, I think I'd make sure I'd shoot to kill first."

The assumption that bad guys will always shoot first given an increase in the number of concealed carry permit holders is a fallacy. The statistics prove that does not happen. As I've said several tiems on this thread, generally, thiefs are not murderers. They want to steal and get away as quickly and quietly as possible, and being involved in a shootout does not contribue to this goal. At least, that's what the studies have shown.

Comment: Re:Ghost of the time? (Score 1) 659

by jazzkat (#32404766) Attached to: Students Show a Dramatic Drop In Empathy
"Genuine Need" - that is an astute observation, Dafing. Let's take a look at the things I can do with my car:

-go to work, the store, other utilitarian places
-go to play ball in the park
-race my car on a track
-Provide relaxation, if I am restoring an old car


...and my gun?
-defend against bad guys, either by scaring them or by making the grave and last-resort decison to use the weapon
-hunt small game, if I needed to
-hone my skills at sport shooting
-Provide relaxation, if I am restoring an old gun


I suppose that there are many more places I could go with my car, than things I would want to shoot at for fun. (Shooting for fun only occurs with paper targets in a specially-designed range)

I believe I answered the question in the other post, but I would feel safer with other licensed and trained individuals carrying guns. I honestly do not know - I have not considered whether or not I would rather live in an unarmed society.

Comment: Re:Ghost of the time? (Score 1) 659

by jazzkat (#32404716) Attached to: Students Show a Dramatic Drop In Empathy
Hello again Dafing -

"...the country with the most guns, and one of the most violent..."

Mexico is far more violent than we are, and they don't allow any kind of guns for civilians.

"If these people realise others have a pistol, I would logically assume they would make sure they have an equal or if possible "better" weapon."

But you are making a fundamental assumption that all thiefs wish to become murderers. There is a large difference between someone who wants to steal and someone who is willing to kill to succeed at being a thief. But not everyone here has a gun - so a thief can still pick a victim who is unlikely to be armed. Studies have been conducted by the FBI (our national police) where career criminals say that their biggest fear is being shot during the course of their escapades.

"Think about it, if you are in a public place, say a movie theatre, watching, oh, lets say Avatar (in 3D if it makes a difference), would you rather EVERYONE had a gun, or that NOBODY had a gun?"

That point is actually moot, because in most locales, you are not allowed to carry into movie theaters even if you have a license. But it's also not a valid test because there are lots of people who frequent movie theaters who are under the influence of narcotics and other drugs - and those people are not allowed to carry weapons, and for good reason. But given a crowd who was licensed and had the proper training, yes, it is preferable that everyone is armed rather than nobody being armed.

"I would also think that if you want to commit a crime, and you know that the police who oppose you are brutal, you would be more likely to do ANYTHING you can to stay free. And thus things could escalate rapidly."

That is an interesting thought experiment but that's not the way it happens for the most part. Again, you're grossly over-estimating the number of psychopaths who are willing to kill. They are out there but few and far between.

"If you think that you live in an unsafe area because of weapons, then why add more weapons into the equation? Its a sort of a Mutual Assured Destruction theory? At some time, you have to back down, and work on REDUCING the problem itself."

Why add more weapons into the equation? I'll flip it around and say, if I know that the bad guys have guns, why would I make myself a willing victim by refusing to be armed? "At some point work on REDUCING the problem..." That is not practical. It seems that every time a country that already has firearms tries to restrict them, violent crime goes up. Why? Because the criminals, who don't obey laws anyway, will keep their guns while the law abiding citizens turn their guns in. Look at Britain for an example of this. Also, Chicago and other high-crime areas of the U.S. have the strictest gun laws in the country. This is not coincidence.

You should also consider why Sweeden was not invaded during WWII. There were a number of reasons for this, political, economic (they supplied the Nazi's wth iron), but each and every Sweede had a government-provided rifle and knew how to use it. Trying to invade Sweeden would be a nightmare under these conditions.

Comment: Re:Ghost of the time? (Score 1) 659

by jazzkat (#32404614) Attached to: Students Show a Dramatic Drop In Empathy
Hello Dafing -

"I find the idea of everyone being armed absolutely terrifying... mention seeing police with guns on every street...and the thought of even armed police gives me the creeps..."

You make a fundamntal error in your assumption; the error is assuming that the mere possession of a firearm makes an otherwise sane, calm individual into a psycopath who wants to shoot everybody up.

Here's a question for you. I am not sure if you drive a car where you are. If you do, then do you suddenly get the urge to mow down all of the pedestrians on the sidewalks when you're driving along the street? No? I didn't think so. A hunk of metal cannot, by itself, make an otherwise sane man insane.

I'm going to address your other comment separately, but I'll say this. To purchase a gun where I live, you are subject to a 'light' background check. If you have committed a felony, or any crime involving violence, escaping from police, or if you even have a protection order against you - you can't get a gun.

In order to be able to carry a gun with you, where I live, you need to get a license to do that. This license is a) easy to lose, b) expensive, and also carries with it a much more extensive background check. Those of us who have licenses do not want to lose them so we are always on our best behavior. We are more likely to walk away from confrontation and only escalate when it's certain that the bad guy is going to try to kill us. Good Night.

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