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Comment: Re:That has to be the most garbled summary.... (Score 0) 156

by popo (#47563919) Attached to: The Hobbit: the Battle of Five Armies Trailer Released

It wasn't the "uber geeks" that ruined this trilogy. Jackson built up an incredible amount of "cred" with LOTR. The speed and decisiveness with which he obliterated his cred with The Hobbit is rivaled only by George Lucas and the disaster of Episodes 1 & 2.

The Hobbit is a silly script, which was mutated into a slapstick adventure-comedy. The characters are 2 dimensional and the plot could only possibly interest a child.

Thank goodness we "uber geeks" have Game of Thrones to distract us while Jackson sh*ts out another Disney-esque turd for his corporate paymasters.

Comment: Third Amendment Violations, dead ahead (Score 1, Funny) 54

by popo (#47563889) Attached to: Airbnb Partners With Cities For Disaster Preparedness

Since the first, second and fourth amendments have already been assaulted and cut-back in the USA, it's probably just a matter of time before the third amendment gets assaulted too.

Most of our already-lost rights seem to have been erased under the banner of "emergency planning", so this would seem like a logical place for the breach on our third amendment rights.

Comment: Or maybe you're not so good at math (Score 5, Insightful) 511

The problem is that in terms of mathematical relativity, the fighting in Gaza is not a terribly important ongoing conflict.

There are an *exponentially* larger number of ongoing casualties in Syria. Where is the outrage?

There are more ongoing casualties in Sudan, Pakistan and other non-reported conflicts as well. Where are the street protests?

Selective outrage is inherently indicative of a motivation *other* than humanitarian concern.

Great stats here: http://notquant.com/the-israel...

We must care about civilian casualties. But we must not care more about some casualties over others.

Comment: But people forget what MENSA concluded (Score 2, Interesting) 561

by popo (#47322699) Attached to: Match.com, Mensa Create Dating Site For Geniuses

Folks, MENSA was a study intended to track the successes of those with high IQ's as they progressed through life.

Somewhat unsurprisingly, the study revealed NO CORRELATION.

Zippo. Nada. None. Zilch.

People with high-IQ's were no more successful in career terms than people with average IQ's. (I have a high IQ, and I wish the correlation had been tighter! :D )

So at the end of the day "success" is a combination of multiple factors and IQ alone is non-determinant. So who cares about IQ anyway?

Comment: Re:It's still debt (Score 1) 39

"Sorta, but not really. Debt is a type of mutual bet made by the investor/banker and the beneficiary that the value of the assets purchased by the debt will exceed the value of the money the debt reflects. And most of the time, it works out, and everybody wins!"

Buzz. Wrong. Actually, that's mostly not how it works. But it's a wonderful fantasy. To say that everybody wins, is a dangerous definition of "everybody".

The problem with debt is that pervasive use of debt actually drives up the price of assets and is disastrous for non-debtors, which in turn forces more and more people into the hands of the banks.

In literally every area of he economy where debt is employed, prices inflate and affordability is reduced.

Take education: it is government "affordability" policies and readily available debt that are responsible for soaring costs. Take housing: without debt it would be affordable.

Of course, you could say that homeowners and bankers have both benefited. (If that's your definition of "everybody"). But the availability of debt has destroyed the buying power of any party not willing to more themselves in debt. The pervasive use of debt is what drives prices to levels of unaffordability.

Comment: It's still debt (Score 2, Interesting) 39

Micro finance is indeed capable of a lot of good. But it's also still debt, and still carries with if all the personal (and macroeconomic) evils of debt. Non-performing loans in microfinance are still a major issue despite the claims to the opposite. The public-relations positioning of micro finance as "help for the poor" is a bit laughable as it can just as easily be construed as opportunistic bankers eager for new markets. Does it help society overall? That's questionable. All debt appears to help on a macroeconomic level at the beginning if the credit cycle.

On a larger level, debt is still tomorrow's demand, spent today. The notion that debt will always create a "virtuous circle" of ever increasing growth and demand has been proven wrong repeatedly by the credit cycle of booms and busts. A boom creates as many victims as it does beneficiaries, as rising prices burden those who do not participate in the game of debt.

Are there positive stories of individuals who make use of micro finance to build businesses and lift themselves out of poverty? Yes. But there is also debt which enslaves and burdens. Debt is debt. It's net benefits to society are zero sum, for all but the bankers.

Comment: Re:US Postal Law (Score 1) 157

I am smoking US Law.

"Q. Am I obligated to return or pay for merchandise I never ordered?
A. No. If you receive merchandise that you didn’t order, you have a legal right to keep it as a free gift."

Source: Federal Trade Commission Re: Unordered Merchandise
https://www.consumer.ftc.gov/a...

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