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Comment Re:Russia won't retaliate (Score 1) 533

Think again, they may not retaliate directly since that really might start WWIII, but with Syria the Russians are in the position of supporting an entrenched government. They are able to start sending all kinds of troops and support to Syria and as they are simply bolstering an existing regime, the assistance will be very direct and effective. What's more the regime, and it ethnic supporters, really have no choice but to fight to survive. Turkey shot down the plane in retaliation for the bombing of Turkmen villages near Turkey's border, this was blatantly to make it hard for Russia to run air missions and no other reason.

Comment We are playing a dangerous and stupid game (Score 2) 533

First off, Turkey shot down this plane for reasons important to Turkey. The plane may well have crossed into Turkey, though it sounds like it flew over a spit of land on an irregular boarder area, but the Turkish air force pursued it and shot it down over Syria, that is blatantly clear by where it crashed. Sure they "warned" the plane, for 5 whole minutes, but they obviously had the aircraft right there with the finger on the trigger and at the time of the shooting the plane would have been in Syria. Turkey was looking for an excuse an got one. The reason the plane was so easy to down was because the pilot didn't expect them to shoot. The reason for the attack is Turkey is trying to make it as difficult as possible for Russia to use it's air power, not because anyone legitimately thought Turkish forces or civilians were in serious danger. Had Russia actually been dropping bombs in Turkey, that would be a different matter and there would be undeniable proof. If our top priority was to stop ISIS, we would support Assad and simply do our best to make the support conditional on reforms. He clearly only wants to stay in power and has already agreed to any number of reforms. This isn't to say that Assad is a good guy, but rather a statement that our so called allies in the area are pretty weak to non existent. Plus, at the end of the day I don't know that their priorities really match ours, all we really know about them is they aren't Assad and they aren't ISIS. So why are we doing this? This is feeling more like a proxy war between the U.S. and Russia, and less like anyone actually cares about ISIS one way or the other. We aren't going to bomb our way to peace over there, making the war last longer is going to create more terrorists, not less. I don't know what they will call themselves, but I know we are just going to create more people with a grudge against the West, and I suppose Russia as well.

Comment Funny thing aobut phone and Web traffic (Score 2) 223

That is because most people are quite sensible. The simple fact is all this stuff is already recorded, the phone company knows who you called, the Web site knows you visited and the email hosts knows you sent the email. Most people are relying on secure through obscurity and they know it full well. Even if the government doesn't have your records, the vendor always does and everyone knows full well they would have to turn it over to the government if forced. What people really want to know is the rules of the road and what the government is up to and what they are doing with it, just like they want to know what the business is up to and what they business will do with their data.

Comment Won't work long term (Score 1) 371

This may have a short term benefit, but by and large happy workers aren't productive, productive workers are happy. At the end of the day, we all like to feel like we succeeded somehow. SOME distraction and downtime that is work sponsored is beneficial, but there is a definite limit, more effective is finding ways to make the needed tasks satisfying to perform has a better long term result.

Comment IT not needed, so long as you want nothing new (Score 1) 233

IT was never needed beyond the initial set up. Computer programs run just fine for years on end, computer hardware lasts much longer than most companies replacement cycles. You only need IT when you want new features or functionality. Problem is users want more of it then ever, as computing becomes cheaper, more and more will be demanded to do more things.

Comment Junk DNA is not Junk (Score 1) 110

It seems pretty simple, if a gene was useful in the past at some time, it is possible it might be useful in the future. Therefore it is handy to write down old unneeded sequences just in case. How many you write down would be related to the desire to facilitate mutations or prevent them as the case may be. FYI this was actually hinted at by creationist who pointed out the probability of gene sequences spontaneously forming being astronomically low. Clearly biology was cribbing from previously useful sequences.

Neckties strangle clear thinking. -- Lin Yutang