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Comment unit argument (Score 1) 107

I thought this was going to be a scientific article about how the unit called a calorie is screwed up. I was hoping for a treatise on thermodynamics and standards and some new measurement technology. So sad to find out it was just about losing weight. Is it too much to expect a news site for nerds to geek out on units of measurement, without fretting about real-world applications?

Besides, if you're looking at real-world applications, how about looking at a nerdy version of it? Weight loss is just a mass balance problem. Just inhaling and exhaling loses weight. So as long as you poop out more than you eat, you will lose weight. How you do that might or might not involve counting calories. The article I linked to has an easier solution; just skip a meal every now and then. But that doesn't sell meal plans and gym memberships, so don't expect it to catch on.

Comment Re:Ia my impression wrong? (Score 1) 509

Oh no, there's plenty of stupid on both sides of the aisle. Just look at Hank Johnson's concern about whether Guam will capsize. (Granted, he later claimed that it was a joke... but man, what a deadpan.) Or the whole anti-GMO thing. The thing is, there's a lot of smarts on both sides, too. But the Republicans are so afraid of being called elitist, they just don't let it show. I'll never understand that. I *want* the people in charge of the country to be smarter than I. If they aren't, then just let me run the place and call it a day. We're on the not so slow slide to Idiocracy.

Comment Re:2212 guns being "smuggled" into airports (Score 1) 500

Don't you remember right after 911 when they were stopping people about a mile from the airport and checking their cars? Not that that would stop a determined terrorist from making a mess of things. The problem was, since it was real cops without real search warrants, they realized they couldn't legally do anything with any evidence they might find. Not much use if your goal is locking up pot smokers.

I've been really surprised we haven't seen a security line bombing/shooting. It would be way more effective at screwing with America than just taking down another plane. All it would take would be a handful of crazies with guns, and some simple timing. They wouldn't even have to buy tickets, since in most places the security line isn't too far from the boarding pass checkpoint.

On a tangential note, I was thinking about getting a group of Boy Scouts to help me with a service project. I want to hand out copies of the Bill of Rights at the security line at my local airport. Maybe bring a fife and drum to play Yankee Doodle or something. Bwahahaha

Comment Re:Trump just says stuff (Score 1) 875

I am a counter example. I would vote for Bernie above just about any GOP out there, but if Hillary wins the nomination, I'll probably just have to go third party. There are a few of the sane GOP guys I'd vote for over her, but not Trump or Cruz. And if you think she could actually control that lunatic bull in a china shop, you're dreaming. That's the sort of secret weapon that ends up blowing everybody to smithereens.

Comment Re:Trump just says stuff (Score 4, Informative) 875

It's amazing how many people love to conflate Socialism and Communism. Part of the blame can be placed on the USSR and China. When the biggest two communist examples people can think of bill themselves as Socialist Republics, it is an understandable mistake. The fact that it's automatically associated with EVIL and ANTI-AMERICAN, is a different matter altogether. You would think that the Red Scare of the 40s and 50s was relegated to the past, but I guess it's as alive and well as racism.

Socialism is something practiced already in this country. We have Social Security, interstate highways, public libraries and parks, Medicaid, just to name a few programs that most people are pretty OK with. In fact, most of the people who are anti-socialism would shout to the heavens if you tried to take away any of these benefits.

Socialism can coexist with nearly any type of political system. Communism is (at least by definition) a direct rule by the people (although this has never been fully realized in practice). Socialism allows for personal property, modified capitalism, religious practice; Communism does not. Communism requires centralized economic controls; Socialism does not.

My personal favorite are the RWNJs who further conflate Socialism and Communism with Fascism. Then they throw a "Liberal" in there, because that makes seven kinds of no sense. I guess serving two 4-year terms and peacefully stepping down from office is totally the way a fascist dictator would behave.

Comment Re:"Social Justice" prevents good journalism. (Score 2, Insightful) 311

What's with the scare quotes? Social justice is the notion that everyone in a society deserves justice. Pretty simple really. I think refugees deserve justice. I think rape victims deserve justice. I think hedge fund managers deserve justice. I think transsexuals deserve justice. The list goes on. You do what is right in your society, and your society should do right by you. Even if you do wrong, you still deserve justice (it just might be bad for you).

What would you like to call people fleeing Syria because of the violence there? I don't think "refugee" is a sugar coat, it is just a helpful term signifying that the person is not from the country. Words seem very important to you, but I find it interesting that you don't offer what terminology should be used. Do you really think it would be meaningful for CNN to talk about the "hostile foreign invading influx" in Cologne? Nobody would know what the fuck you were talking about. If you say they were refugees, everybody has a better picture what you mean.

Give me an example of what you think the "'social justice' crowd" is and how they would go about attacking media outlets. I am having a hard time wrapping my head around that. Would it be a twitter campaign? Oh noes! However will their stock price recover from such a horrible long-lasting event?!

Let's talk about police officers next. I find it sad that you think the "only reasonable thing" a police officer can do in ANY circumstance would be to shoot an unarmed youth. There are several other reasonable things that other police forces across the planet do, that don't end up with dead unarmed people. Surely our cops are bright enough to figure some of these alternatives out. It might also help if they don't give people shit on purpose trying to get their dander up. Take the guy with the bright headlights, for example. What crime did Deven Guilford commit?

So now we get to the real meat of your argument. That the media should report on social justice as if it is some breaking news story. Well, this probably makes perfect sense in your head, because you are using social justice to mean some bizarre mix of things you don't like (although you haven't really defined it). Luckily, most people understand that social justice isn't really a news story so much as an extension of the social contract. You may not like that we try to treat people with dignity and respect, but we do. And I think society is better for it.

There are other ways we could go. Assume all refugees are rapists. Allow cops to be judge jury and executioner. Declare everyone who disagrees with you is weak or angry or irrational. No thank you. I would choose social justice over these other options any day.

I could make the comment that news outlets aren't covering the lawsuit against the Center for Medical Progress. And then I could claim that it was some vast anti-choice conspiracy to ignore the crimes of fraudulent so-called journalists. I could even throw in some scare quotes. But I realize that it's probably just because the suit hasn't progressed very far, and it's not clear if it will, so there's no real reason to devote a lot of news time to it. Likewise, CNN's use of the word refugee probably isn't a conspiracy. And maybe, just maybe, news outlets blame police for shooting unarmed youth because they hold police to a higher standard (as do most of their viewers).

Comment Re:What the hell is wrong with our politicians? (Score 4, Insightful) 343

For starters, he has no clue what the phrase "carpet bombing" means; that was painfully clear in the debate. He said the federal government wants to crack down on school districts that don't allow transgender kids to use the showers of their identified gender. He has a problem with OSHA/ADA guidelines on toilet seats. He thinks Barack Obama is somehow unique in writing signing statements and executive orders. He said that expanding Medicaid will make it harder for the poor to get healthcare (WTF?). He told Catholics that Democrats said, "Change your religious beliefs or we'll use our power in the federal government to shut down your charities and your hospitals." He's against net neutrality.

As a matter of opinion, he's just creepy. He cooks bacon on a gun. Also, if Republicans complained because Obama hadn't even served for one entire senate term, then they should have the same issue with this cat. But they won't because when a Republican has no experience, he's an "outsider." When a Democrat has no experience he's "unqualified."

Comment Re:Nobody fucking wants this (Score 1) 196

First off, the entire idea of having a screen like that in any seat the driver can see is fucking idiotic and will cause crashes.

It's a Microsoft product. Of course it will cause crashes. The good thing is, when your Microsoft Car crashes, just restart it and everything will be back to normal.

Comment Re:Wrong End (Score 1) 287

Absolutely untrue, and shame on you for perpetuating such a horrible myth.

I could have easily gotten out of jury duty by making some outrageous racist claim or the like. But I'm smart enough to know that if everybody does that, then when I get wrongfully accused of something there won't be anybody intelligent to see through the DA's BS. The case I was on, they had zero evidence. Just a BS story from a stripper. No bloodstains on her dress, no knife, nothing. DA was a damn good lawyer, and the defendant's lawyer was not. Believe it or not, the first time through deliberation, a couple of people actually voted guilty. Had it been a room full of room-temperature IQ's, that case could have easily gone the other way.

Smart people don't weasel out of it if they are smart enough to think of the long-term ramifications of that unethical mindset.

Comment Re:Fighting Poverty..not new. (Score 2) 413

A lot of the ones who didn't return to NO moved to Houston and the surrounding areas. The neighborhood I used to live in had great schools until 2006. Then everything went to hell: increases in violence, decreases in test scores and graduation rates, higher teacher turnover. By the time my kid was old enough to go to kindergarten, the whole district was in shambles. So we moved.

I'm not going to argue that the refugees were the only reason things got bad. The general problems with home values (and thus school district tax revenues) in 2009 certainly played a big part. But there was a definite feeling that somehow school violence was the new normal immediately after our new neighbors moved in.

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