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Comment: Re:Cause, or effect? (Score 1) 198

by PopeRatzo (#49376695) Attached to: Poverty May Affect the Growth of Children's Brains

Could it also be related to poorer parents working more hours, thus having less time to be with the kids during their early years

There are probably dozens of measurable ways being poor affects the development of brains. But ultimately, it's happening because that's the way the people at the very top in terms of wealth and power want it. The last think they want is for poor people to suddenly become successful, and develop political power.

One of the side-effects of the New Deal and the labor movement in America is that a bunch of people who were on the shitty side of the street suddenly were able to take a big step up. GIs coming out of WW2 who would normally have gone to work in the coal mine or slaughter house suddenly had the means to go to college, buy a house, live a life of reasonable comfort. And do you know what they did with this sudden shift in circumstances? They developed political power. Their kids went from blue collar to white collar. And similar steps up during the pre and post-war period occurred for women and American blacks.

And this scared the bejeesus out of the elite. So, in the 70s, and peaking in the 80s, there came an effort to undo these advancements. The effort included an attack on New Deal programs like Social Security and the labor movement. The effort included the flooding of the inner city with crack cocaine (which we now know to have been run by our own government). The effort included the confluence of evangelical religion with supply-side capitalism by Billy Graham (who started his ministry with funds from the Chamber of Commerce).

The effort to put the genie back in the bottle continues to this day, and it's been quite successful. Economic disparity hasn't been this out of whack since the 19th century. Militarized policing, private prisons, an attack on public education are all fronts in this class war being waged by the elite. You want to see it in action, watch the political policies being pushed by governors of Kansas, Indiana, and many states throughout the South and in big cities in the North. Just watch.

Comment: Re:Legal (Score 2) 178

by PopeRatzo (#49362345) Attached to: Commercial Flamethrower Successfully Crowdfunded

Is anything legal in California these days?

Medical marijuana, gay marriage, conceal/carry.

Say you're not really pissed that fucking flamethrowers aren't legal there, are you? I don't know if you've gotten a look at your fellow man in the United States lately, but are these really people you want to be able to have flamethrowers? Geez, louise, there can't be more than maybe 1 in 100 that I think should be allowed to drive a car. Maybe 1 in 10 should be allowed to have shoelaces for chrissake.

Although I'm sure we can find someone reading this that believes "More flamethrowers = Less crime".

Comment: Re:N4N? (Score 2, Troll) 340

tech how?

It's not, but Friday night is #GamerGate and MRAs night on Slashdot, when 8chan empties out and all the manbabies meet here to cry about how the feminazis are taking away their games and comics and action figures.

Look back a few months. It happens every Friday. There is a story about gender or sexual orientation or something that can be construed as violating the natural order of the primacy of white men. Then, the tears start to flow and it all ends in the gators and the MRAs in one big group hug.

It's harmless, really. If it keeps them off the streets, I'm all for them having their own neckbeard hugbox.

Comment: Re:You should title this "Patriot act to be repeal (Score 1) 185

by PopeRatzo (#49341795) Attached to: New Bill Would Repeal Patriot Act

I don't honestly see Jeb as having that much a chance, at least not if it were done today.

He's winning the money primary, which is the only one that really matters.

I also think there are a lot of folks in the US that just do not want another dynasty name in there, no more Clintons or Bushes.

Well, there's the problem, isn't it? It just doesn't matter that folks in the US think when it comes to US elections. The decisions are always made for us long before election day.

Comment: Re:You should title this "Patriot act to be repeal (Score 4, Insightful) 185

by PopeRatzo (#49335271) Attached to: New Bill Would Repeal Patriot Act

Considering the Democrats who controlled both parties failed to do anything but renew it, the Republicans may be our best shot - particularly while they don't control the executive branch.

With Jeb Bush about to become the nominated leader of the party? Good luck with that.

When it comes to stuff like homeland security and defense appropriations, the parties don't matter. It's neo-cons all the way down.

Did you know that Jeb Bush has asked Howard Baker to become his senior advisor?

It's gonna take a much bigger shift in government than just a one party or the other taking over to get rid of the Patriot Act.

Comment: I love MuseScore (Score 5, Informative) 35

by PopeRatzo (#49331707) Attached to: MuseScore 2.0 Released

MuseScore is one of the most important open source applications installed on my computer. I have nothing but respect for the people who've developed it. They were also the people behind the phenomenal Wikifonia website, which aggregated crowd-sourced musical scores, and single-handedly kept the Great American Songbook vital and allowed thousands of young jazz musicians to access online, transposable scores of hundreds of jazz standards until it was forced off the air by music publishers and Hal Leonard. Luckily, some kind soul in Belgium rar'd the entire archive of Wikifonia and smuggled it out to a guy I know via Mega and that great resource for musicians still exists (and can be found at the Wikifonia fan page at Facebook, but you'll have to dig a bit). Until Wikifonia, musicians had to tote around poorly-transcribed sheets or Real Books with ugly calligraphy.

I use MuseScore every single day and it's every bit the equal of any of the expensive music score programs like Sibelius or Finale. If you are a musician or composer or use musical manuscripts, I highly recommend MuseScore. There are plugins that will do everything from providing tools to people who score films like me or just someone who wants to covert sheet music into harmonica, guitar or uke tabs. Laying out everything from a simple lead sheet to an orchestral score is a pure joy using MuseScore, and if you know a little bit about how musical manuscripts work, the learning curve is not bad at all.

I don't know any of these people personally, but if any of the MuseScore team see this, I want to thank you for your work. I've contributed what money I can to the project, but I want you to know how much your work has enriched my life.

Comment: Re:May you choke on your own words (Score 0) 316

by PopeRatzo (#49331307) Attached to: First Lawsuits Challenging FCC's New Net Neutrality Rules Arrive

And I can't come up with a economically defensible reason to go back,

You understand that the only option in 1968 for finding out whether or not there is a good reason to explore the moon is actually going to the moon, right? And despite your objectivist baloney, human beings do things without a profit motive. Sometimes, great things. How much did Isaac Newton profit when he was working out optics? You think Galileo or Copernicus were doing their rather unpopular work for the sweet sweet coin?

What is money except a measure of economic value? What is capital except a measure of society's perceived value in making a task possible?

Late stage capital is a complete refutation of this purely materialistic vision.

If you have to force people to do something via the application of the government's power of life and death, it probably isn't worth doing.

Wait, you think the guys that went to the moon or the guys that built the Apollo rockets or the people who paid a minuscule share of their tax money to pay for the space program were only doing it because of the "government's power of life and death"?

Maybe you're too young to remember this: https://youtu.be/g25G1M4EXrQ

I was too young to remember it, though I was alive at the time. What I do remember is that the space program inspired generations and it cost less than Americans were spending on cigarettes and cigars every year. We're talking about a people that were only 16 years from having saved their bacon grease and string to be able to help the war effort. We're talking about a generation of people who had come out of a very dark chapter in human history, having sacrificed universally for something they believed in. They didn't scrimp for war bonds and enlist in the military because they thought, "what profit is there in this?" but because they were inspired to do so by larger events. And the larger events of the US space program similarly inspired generations of young people to set their sights beyond just going to work selling insurance or vacuum cleaners door-to-door. During the space program, interest in the sciences - all of the sciences - exploded, and set the route that led to almost all of the technological innovation that followed in the decades hence.

I'm not sure what happened to you. When did you lose your ability to be inspired by something besides selfish financial gain? Though you demonstrate the symptoms of someone who fell in love with the pseudo-intellectual pursuit known as "objectivism", most likely as an undergrad, clearly something else went wrong as well.

[in case anyone is interested, here is the entirety of the JFK speech excerpted above:

Comment: Re:May you choke on your own words (Score 1) 316

by PopeRatzo (#49328851) Attached to: First Lawsuits Challenging FCC's New Net Neutrality Rules Arrive

Sure, it would have happened later, but at least we'd get some kind of direct benefit from it, instead of a bunch of museum pieces that no one remembers how to reconstruct, and Tang.

You think Tang was the only benefit of the US space program?



If there hadn't been a space program, Richard Branson would still be selling vinyl records and Elon Musk would be a mediocre video game developer.

How stupid people are to think that business profits are the only way to measure benefit to society. How small-minded and provincial. And all because of reading Ayn Rand's poorly-written fantasy novels when they're freshmen.

Comment: Re:May you choke on your own words (Score 4, Informative) 316

by PopeRatzo (#49325099) Attached to: First Lawsuits Challenging FCC's New Net Neutrality Rules Arrive

Giving the government credit for creating the current internet is like giving Abner Doubleday credit for Henry Aaron's home runs.

Now I'm confused. If baseball hadn't been invented, how would Hank Aaron have hit home runs again?

Maybe we need to work on your similes.

"Ada is the work of an architect, not a computer scientist." - Jean Icbiah, inventor of Ada, weenie