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Comment: I may regret sharing this.... (Score 3, Interesting) 81

...but my refuge for the zombie apocalypse?
The town water tower. Specifically, INSIDE/atop.

First benefit is that (until now) nobody else would be going there, and you avoid the panic-rush when everyone gets stuck on the freeways.
Many/most(?) stations have emergency generators already built in and by law well-equipped for sustained operation.
Ample fresh water, obviously, and a great situation for catching clean rainfall.

Most of our local towers are largely flat, and basically immune to severe weather and heavily insulated, meaning you'd have a secure, highly defensible place with great sightlines (to signal/communicate other survivors, if that's something you want to do), so high that even if they were attracted to your location, they'd have to pile up so high they'd pretty much liquefy at the bottom before getting to you.

Bring your acetylene kit as you evacuate*, and you could really build a nice home in there, including ziplines to nearby roofs/buildings for foraging (granted, getting back up there if there were zombies around your entry might stink).
*lots of small communities actually have a fair amount of tools stored right inside in the base for maintenance, saving you a lot of work.

Comment: Re:WTF (Score 4, Interesting) 101

by MightyYar (#49160871) Attached to: Ultra-Low Power Radio Transceiver Enables Truly Wireless Earbuds

Well, you don't seem like the original poster, but I think you answered my question.

1. Fit in a pocket
2. Are more than adequate for most pop music produced in the last 75 years.
3. Are more than adequate for most mobile listening environments.
4. Are more than adequate for podcasts.
5. Can passively cancel ambient noise without looking like Princess Leia.
6. Might, depending on personal preference, be more comfortable.
7. More amenable to wearing during physical activity.
8. Starting cost is around $1.

But yes, they completely suck for all purposes.

Comment: Re:Climate change phobia (Score 0) 331

by argStyopa (#49154217) Attached to: We Stopped At Two Nuclear Bombs; We Can Stop At Two Degrees.

Except that - even if you agree that climate is changing, which seems to be indisputably true - it's still rather humanocentric to assume that we "could have changed something".*

* First, you have to assume that global warming is driven largely by humans; considering that about every 120k years there's a sudden spike in temps and CO2 and the last one was...120k years ago, I think the burden of proof (that this one is caused by SUVs and Republicans, when none of the previous dozen were) is still on the AGW folks, depite the politically-driven IPCC reports.
Second, you have to assume that the warming isn't simply intrinsic to how we live in the 21st century, like the concomitant carcinogens that are consumed with cooked meat. Sure, if we killed off half of humanity it might reduce warming significantly, is that worth it? We could all live like hunter gatherers, but is it worth it?

Comment: Re: if your care for the poor were genuine (Score 1) 364

by MightyYar (#49148945) Attached to: The Groups Behind Making Distributed Solar Power Harder To Adopt

I asked you to refrain from empty statements like "don't throw money at the problem" or "it would be better if people didn't have to rely on government assistance" and other such phrasings that you have used.

Those aren't empty statements, but I won't belabor that point anymore. We clearly disagree.

That you also combined programs like Social Security with your complaints about Welfare in general, is yet another hallmark of why I differ with you. You even thought it was necessary to combine them. It's not. Never was, never have been.

Once welfare reform hit, a lot of people shifted over to Social Security - specifically the long-term disability part. It is exactly this kind of shuffling that makes it difficult to separate the programs. Social Security is not one thing - it is a retirement program for all wage earners (except some public unions), but it also contains a significant social welfare element. I don't mind separating them for whatever analysis you want to do - either way the amount of money spent has only gone up and poverty has not budged since those initial gains way back in the 60s.

Here's a decent write-up. I wish we could paste graphs in, but I'll do my best. First, look at the very first chart, which shows a dramatic decrease in the poverty rate in the first 10 years, followed by no progress over the remaining 40. The second chart addresses the criticism that the official poverty rate is not accurate, but it also shows only a slightly more optimistic trend. The last chart shows spending as a percentage of GDP, broken down into all programs and programs exclusively for the benefit of the poor - as you keep suggesting.

You can see from this chart that the initial ramp-up from 0.5 to 1% of the GDP corresponds to a reduction in the poverty rate from 22% to 12%. This represents an astounding success: for 0.5% of our total output, we cut poverty almost in half!

However, the ensuing years see us increase spending 4x, with little to show for it. I know that my analysis is simplistic. I know that much of the spending has been on health care, which has grown at a rate far in excess of the GDP. Nevertheless, it is a completely reasonable interpretation of the data to say that money is probably not the problem anymore. It certainly looks like it was in 1950, but you have to recognize that we reached a point of diminishing returns sometime in the early 70s.

An interesting correlation is the 2nd chart from the bottom, where black and Hispanic poverty took a nose-dive in the mid 90s. We were coming out of a recession and entering the dot-com era, and that probably explains some of it. But I think it is notable that this is when welfare reform started to kick in. Sometimes you can help the poor by doing something counter-intuitive.

Comment: Re:Is that really a lot? (Score 1) 280

by dcw3 (#49148765) Attached to: Drones Cost $28,000 Per Arrest, On Average

This would be the "penny wise, pound foolish" option. Even if that figure was accurate, which it's not even close, doing so would cause a wave of additional immigrants looking for that handout. Oh, and while we're at it, why not just pay everyone who's unemployed, and already in the U.S. that minimum wage?

Comment: Re:Is that really a lot? (Score 1) 280

by dcw3 (#49148747) Attached to: Drones Cost $28,000 Per Arrest, On Average

You can "be sure", but you'd be incorrect. This isn't a classified program, and the people working on it don't have to hide what they do at all. There are too many individuals working it, and if you were correct that tidbit would quickly leak out. Just like with so many other conspiracy theories, when more than a handful of people are involved, everything inevitably comes to light.

I cannot draw a cart, nor eat dried oats; If it be man's work I will do it.