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Comment: Re:I guess that if a Mathematician... (Score 1) 121

by iluvcapra (#49764515) Attached to: <em>A Beautiful Mind</em> Mathematician John F. Nash Jr. Dies

Yes, it's technically correct, though I get tired of hearing this brought up all the time, as if it's some sort of weird conspiracy theory to make it sound like there's a "Nobel Prize" when there isn't one.

There is the matter that Nobel, nor his family, even those alive today, had any intention of giving an award to economists. The award is given in the memory of Alfred Nobel, which is nice, but taken to the extreme and you get David Miscavage giving Tom Cruise the "Albert Einstein Humanitarian Anti-Psychology Award." It's a shameless appropriation of the name Nobel simply to promote the award.

Alfred Nobel created his foundation as a humanitarian enterprise, mainly to atone for his invention of dynamite. He wanted to promote brotherhood between nations and the pursuit of knowledge. The Swedish National Bank created the Economics award because they wanted to promote economic science.

Comment: Re:I guess that if a Mathematician... (Score 1) 121

And by the way, usually this argument tends to come up from people who want to claim economics isn't a "real science" or something.

The burden on proof really is on people (usually economists among themselves) that pretend that economics is a science.

I just want to be clear that I was in no way implying that economics is (or is not) a "real science" (whatever that means). The point of the end of my post was that this is often an argument brought up about Nobel Prizes, but such a criterion doesn't seem to be relevant given that there are prizes given for things that are definitely not "sciences" AND which were instituted by Nobel himself.

Comment: Re:Some will be troubled (Score 1) 80

This actually plays into my fears about the gamification of education. A lot of game-games use achievements as a "Skinner box" (as Extra Credits terms it) to encourage mindless return business, rather than simply employing good game mechanics. If your achievement or "challenge" is to play 20 times, that doesn't encourage the player to improve their technique -- it's just grinding. Is "grit" not what you get left with after grinding? Rewarding grinding in education or the workplace is little more than institutionalised presenteeism.

Comment: Re:We 'must' compete (Score 1) 80

"Everyone's a winner" was a lazy philosophy resulting from Chinese whispers in the teaching profession. The educational psychologists asked teachers to be more mindful of what they say, because they noticing that across the board, underperforming students got more negative reinforcement for mistakes than positive feednack when they got something right. Teachers weren't supposed to start giving uncritical praise, but just to smile more when kids get things right. It's not that hard to do, and everyone benefits, but it wasn't simple enough for the crappy resource packs and brain-dead seminars that much in-service training is built around.

Comment: Re:To be more precise, Amazon will collect on taxe (Score 1) 207

by PopeRatzo (#49763979) Attached to: Amazon Decides To Start Paying Tax In the UK

What kind of business could have revenue less than or equal to its tax bill but will continue to "pay taxes"?

That's upside down thinking. Corporations pay tax on income which means "profits".

Ergo, all taxes a business will pay must be funded out of revenue.

This is the right-wing brainwashing at work. You can't even imagine taxes being funded out of profits, can you? Please bear in mind that a corporation is simply a legal mechanism by which capital can avoid liability. You have somehow come to believe that a companies costs exactly equal its revenue and that they only exist for the public good.

Comment: Re:New markets (Score 2) 80

Their agenda is to foster a market and transition education into an industry from which great profits can be had for training worker drones who are specifically tailored to the job market.

Don't be so quick to judge people's intentions so harshly. Many people genuinely believe that what they're doing is for the best, and attacking their intentions rather than criticising their methods won't get us anywhere. The Tories cling to the belief that publuc services are intrinsically inefficient, and when they privatise contracts to their friends, it's because they know that they friends have good intentions too. And when they leave politics and take up directorships, it's because they've proven that they're good guys. The oroblem isn't intentions, but the unwavering belief that market economics are good for everyone, and an ideological inability to recognise that the inevitable result of competition is corner-cutting.

As long as we allow ourselves to misrepresent their intentions and define them as inhuman monsters, we tacitly encourage them to do the same to us.

Comment: Re: We 'must' compete (Score 2) 80

Take a closer look at nature. Competition occurs when resources are limited. Wolves compete against other predators and their prey, but cooperation is what wins them the race. Humans compete with other animals, but farming is inherently cooperative and increases the availability of food for everyone. The only place where we really need to compete is in the reproductive stakes.

Comment: Re:Butt hurt... (Score 1) 105

by Half-pint HAL (#49763753) Attached to: Oculus Founder Hit With Lawsuit

A confidentiality agreement is NOT a non-compete agreement which I doubt they could really enforce anyway since a lot of states refuse to recognize them.

Non-competes are legally unenforceable when they stop you realistically changing jobs within your field. Things get murkier when your new employer isn't in that field already, and you're the one that brings the into it. It's murkier still when your new employer is YOU. This isn't a question of non-compete, it's a question of trade secrets, because when the employee is working from the ground up, his prior knowledge is based entirely on the previous employer's project, whereas when there's a partly-built product to work on, there's already a seed that will take the development of the product away from the old employers device.

Comment: Re:To be more precise, Amazon will collect on taxe (Score 1) 207

by Maxo-Texas (#49763729) Attached to: Amazon Decides To Start Paying Tax In the UK

And most corporations don't actually pay 35%. Some large notable corporations didn't even pay 10% for the last several years.

In part due to finding a way to bypass existing tax laws.

The understanding was-- you do business in region "X", you pay taxes in region "X" to support services (like roads, court systems, police). The businesses found a way to say, "Oh- I'm legally in region "Y" even tho I made billions of dollars in region "X" last year. In some cases (like ireland) they are finding it wasn't really legal in the first place... in other places they are closing the loophole.

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