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Comment: Re:impossible (Score 1) 297

The sarcasm fails because everyone has heard of mines or other remote projects where private enterprise builds 100% of their infrastructure...

...and often externalises much of the cost onto the public - in the case of mines, often by allowing toxic leachates into river systems, building spoil tips in unsafe places, etc. The list of mining-related human and environmental disasters is long, and the majority of incidents were ultimately caused by the profit-seeking private owners of the mines wishing to reduce their cost burden.

Comment: Re:impossible (Score 2) 297

Funnily enough, in the UK at least, the people most reliant on welfare are those most likely to support government attempts to cut welfare entitlements, even though they themselves are likely to suffer due to those policies. This seems to be a result of the constant demonisation of welfare recipients in the newspapers most likely to be read in lower-income households.

Owen Jones is particularly good on this.

Some reasons that the modern welfare state keeps growing:
- People keep having children
- Cuts in state funding of social investment programmes (such as parenting education initiatives, adult education classes, social housing construction etc) reduce the chances of people in the lowest income brackets from being able to find work that will lift them out of poverty
  - The national minimum wage (in the UK) is less than the living wage, so work in many cases does not pay

Comment: Re:Yeah... (Score 1) 1105

by jc79 (#43758117) Attached to: 97% of Climate Science Papers Agree Global Warming Is Man-made

Global warming won't result in near-extinction for humans. It will make life a lot less pleasant though, and will probably prove fatal to many in less-resilient (ie poorer) areas as food crops fail and prices rise. There will almost certainly be wars fought over access to water. Current global population levels will become unsustainable.

Some animal and plant species will certainly become extinct as habitats shrink, and ocean acidification will really hit a lot of food chains that we consider important (bye bye cheap protein from fish, already vulnerable due to overexploitation).

But you and me? We're part of the global elite, with the luxury of having the time and money to be posting on this site rather than scratching a living from subsistence farming. We'll pay higher prices for our food, and grumble about all the floods and tornadoes pushing up insurance premiums, but we're unlikely to die from starvation or war as a result of climate change.

Comment: Re:Purse Phone (Score 1) 348

by jc79 (#41925963) Attached to: Samsung's Galaxy S III Steals Smartphone Crown From iPhone

Samsung, like all android phones, just plugs in and acts as a USB drive. .

All your other points are correct, but USB mass storage was removed in Ice Cream Sandwich and replaced by MTP, which is a pig to deal with on pretty much any OS - especially linux-based ones - and is a source of immense frustration. I shouldn't have to run a FTP server on my phone in order to access the files that previously I could get to just by plugging in a USB cable. Major fail for what is an otherwise great smartphone platform.

Comment: Re:Fascinating Animals (Score 1) 88

by jc79 (#41135511) Attached to: Incredible New Photographs of Live Coelacanths

Interesting that you attempt to make this (easily refuted) argument on a science and technology site. The same processes of inquiry, hypothesis formation, testing, refutation, evidence gathering etc etc that led to the invention of semiconductor transistors, laser diodes, optic fibres, LCD displays and such other technologies as you are using to read and post on this site, when applied to biology, have led to the acceptance of speciation by evolution and provided evidence for this from every scale from the geological to the molecular.

If you don't accept evolution as a fact, then you shouldn't believe in the Internet either.

Go on, have a read of George Dyson. Evolutionary processes are as evident in information technology as they are in biology. It's just that the mutation and selection mechanisms are different.

Comment: Re:Donate it (Score 3, Insightful) 301

by jc79 (#41109843) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Best Use For an Old Smartphone?

Got to love the demonisation of the poor. It's much cooler than being racist. SImply change the word "black" for "welfare recipient" in all of your rants and no-one will bat an eyelid.

It's not like we're in the middle of the worst economic crisis for decades, with many people being laid off and needing society to help them get by while they try to be the one person out of the two thousand who applied to actually get the menial, low-paid job that is all that's on offer in the ex-industrial town they had the misfortune to be born in. Heaven forbid anyone would aspire to owning a consumer good which the constant saturation of advertising states is the only way to validate yourself as a person.

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Chavs-Demonization-Working-Owen-Jones/dp/184467696X might open your eyes (UK context but applicable to many western countries)

Comment: Re:Vaccines should be mandatory. (Score 1) 1025

by jc79 (#41109325) Attached to: Study Finds Unvaccinated Students Putting Other Students At Risk

Right. So that Intenet thing you're using to communicate with other individuals, that was created by a meaningless organisational structure? That government which your parents paid taxes to to do things like educate you and keep you safe from criminals, that is a meaningless organisational structure? The extended family and community which you grew up in and kept you nurtured to the point where you could read Ayn Rand and regurgitate nonsense such as you posted, that's just a meaningless organisational structure?

You are alive today because of the collective endeavours of millions of humans who worked to increase our knowledge about the world, invented medicines and medical procedures, even invented world-wide telecommunications networks to share their knowledge for the good of all of our species. If that isn't society, I don't know what is.

Humans are a social species. Get over it, put down the narcissistic libertarian bullshit books, and join in the fun.

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