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Comment: Re:When you are inside the box ... (Score 1) 273

by quenda (#48226605) Attached to: Assange: Google Is Not What It Seems

The word "God" would not have bothered the founding fathers, it's a generic term that in no way claims any particular Religion is right or wrong.

Yes indeed. But you could certainly not say the same for those who modified the pledge in 1954.

The declaration was written by Jefferson, whose religious views deserve their own wikipedia page and are hard to summarise.

While Jefferson uses the word God, it is far from the same sense used by the conservative Christians of 1954.
Politically, they were the antithesis of Jefferson. Interestingly, the original pledge was written by a Christian socialist, but made no mention of religion.
And I really cannot see Jefferson putting God into any pledge.

Comment: Re:When you are inside the box ... (Score 1) 273

by quenda (#48226475) Attached to: Assange: Google Is Not What It Seems

I've seen some ridiculous comments on /. before, but this really takes the cake.

You may well disagree, but to ridicule the notion is evidence of indoctrination.
Lincoln did many admirable things, but is also chose to pursue a war that makes Vietnam look like a schoolyard fight.
The South was far from innocent, but Lincoln, in the position of strength, could easily have ended hostilities and dictated terms for independence.
He chose to "preserve the union" at any cost, and was ruthless with anyone who opposed the war:

George William Brown, the Mayor of Baltimore, the entire city council, all the police commissioners, a sitting U.S. Congresman and other Maryland politicians were arrested and imprisoned, without warrants, charges, or trials, as Lincoln unilaterally suspended the writ of habeas corpus.[149]

What would you say if Gorbachov had acted similarly with the breakaway republics in the 80s and 90's? A hero for preserving the Soviet Union if it destroyed the infrastructure and decimated their population of the breakaway states?

Anyway, my point is not about Lincoln, but that any criticism of him is still regarded as heresy by mainstream Americans. this is indoctrination.

Comment: Re:When you are inside the box ... (Score 2, Insightful) 273

by quenda (#48219409) Attached to: Assange: Google Is Not What It Seems

"one Nation under God"

The God bit was only added in 1954, and probably would have horrified the founding fathers.

""indivisible, with liberty and justice for all."

Thats the scary bit, which sounds a lot like China. A legacy of the civil war. US is the Hotel California - you can never leave. Last time some states disagreed and tried to leave, millions died.
Fortunately the Russians did not treat their former republics that way!
So long as the Americans treat Lincoln as a hero, instead of a mass killer in the company of Stalin and Mao, we know the indoctrination is strong.

Comment: Re:Oh yeah, that guy (Score 1) 273

by quenda (#48219261) Attached to: Assange: Google Is Not What It Seems

Sweden doesn't have to question him in the UK

You miss the point: Of course it is all legal. But Sweden could also easily question him in the UK if that was what they really wanted. (Plenty of precedent.)
Their stated motives makes no sense. Of course the whole thing is purely political. You'd have to be incredibly naive to believe the extradition is about sexual allegations from ex-lovers.

Comment: Re:/. is getting more and more unbelievable !! (Score 1) 211

by quenda (#48218005) Attached to: Mark Zuckerberg Speaks Mandarin At Tsinghua University In Beijing

Actually, it is considered a notoriously difficult language for westerners to learn. I don't think that is hyperbole.

Not just Westerners! Chinese is just as hard for Tanzanians or Indonesians. Chinese an awful language, not just the tones but full of homophones and other pitfalls. The only worse language I know is Cantonese. Maybe Khoisan?

In comparison, Swahili or SE Asian languages are a piece of cake, at least at the beginner level.

Comment: Re:Oh yeah, that guy (Score 3, Interesting) 273

by quenda (#48217789) Attached to: Assange: Google Is Not What It Seems

I'm still lost on why Sweden, of all places, is more likely to deport Assange to the US than England is.

Why else are they going to such extraordinary lengths to obtain him? There are no charges, and Sweden refuses to question him in the UK.
The UK is spending millions of pounds on a case where even the allegations do not add up to anything that would be a crime in the UK.

If you think Assange has no cause for fear, read this:

In December 2001 Swedish police ... two Egyptians who had been seeking asylum in Sweden. The police took them to Bromma airport in Stockholm, and then stood aside as masked alleged CIA operatives cut their clothes from their bodies, inserted drugged suppositories in their anuses, and dressed them in diapers and overalls, handcuffed and chained them and put them on an executive jet with American registration N379P. They were flown to Egypt, where they were imprisoned, beaten, and tortured

Comment: Re:I'm betting on balloons (Score 2) 99

by quenda (#48201981) Attached to: Internet Broadband Through High-altitude Drones

OK, I can see that in mountainous areas one drone can replace many towers to give line of sight.
But the drone still needs to be near overhead, so will not cover a massive area like an Irridium satellite.

And a bunch of mass-produced solar-powered, LOS microwave-link meshed hilltop cells will likely still be easier than one mega-drone.
And safer.

Comment: Re:I'm betting on balloons (Score 4, Interesting) 99

by quenda (#48201459) Attached to: Internet Broadband Through High-altitude Drones

For 98% of the population, towers as used currently make even more sense.
Ground-based cellular systems can pack close together in cities, and spread out in the suburbs and rural areas.
These drones are stuck at high altitude, so except for remote areas they are wasting bandwidth and battery life on the ground.
Drones might be useful for extra large LTE cells in northern Canada or central Australia. Perhaps replace Iridium.

Must be a slow news for nerds day.

Comment: Re:gun laws (Score 1) 329

by quenda (#48201395) Attached to: 3D-Printed Gun Earns Man Two Years In Japanese Prison

How do you explain the fact that Japanese-Americans have a lower homicide rate than Japanese in Japan?


- as a wild guess, discriminatory immigration (no criminal record allowed, higher education an advantage)
- one is the overwhelmingly dominant culture while the other a tiny minority, so any comparison is pointless.
- both are very low, and US data not accurate enough to know if that is true anyway. Your data is based on rough estimates with a large error range.
- you are attempting a distraction that has nothing to do with my post. I do not even offer an explanation for the data I observed, except to agree that homogenous societies tend to have less crime, more cohesion. - which may be only a small part of the answer.

Comment: Re:gun laws (Score 1) 329

by quenda (#48199405) Attached to: 3D-Printed Gun Earns Man Two Years In Japanese Prison

Homogenous societies in general tend to have less violence regardless of the race of the people involved. I think that's the point that was being made.

Thats certainly a factor. Japan obviously is very homogenous, as are many of the nations with low violent crime.

  However there are notable exceptions: Singapore has large disadvantaged minorities, is highly urbanised, yet still has an exceptionally low murder rate. It doesn't hurt that guns are almost non-existent there.

Same applies to Bahrain and Kuwait (racially diverse, very low murder rates). So much for middle-eastern stereotypes.
New Guinea is racially homogenous with a very high murder rate - but culturally diverse with 800-odd languages.

(BTW, I look at murder rate partly because the figures are much more reliable in comparing countries. Methodologies, reporting rates etc vary more for other crimes.)

Comment: Re:gun laws (Score 4, Interesting) 329

by quenda (#48193901) Attached to: 3D-Printed Gun Earns Man Two Years In Japanese Prison

Japans draconian gun laws are not the reason for its low violent crime rate. They have a very low murder rate generally, and don't need such heavy penalties.

The US however does have a serious violent crime problem.
But not all the US: places such as New England, Iowa, the Dakotas, Minnesota, Wyoming, Utah all have homicide rates not so much worse than Europe and Australia.
( Restricting handguns could well reduce the gap.)
What do all these states have in common? Similar racial mix. There is only one state with both a large racial minority and a low murder rate: Hawaii.
Importantly, the white-only homicide rate in the US overall is still much higher than the total homicide rate in the above states, so the cause is not simple.
People in those states have a lower murder rate regardless of race.

You cannot possibly understand the US murder rate without looking at race and guns. The left do not want to talk about race, and the right don't want to talk about guns, so we're screwed.

Put no trust in cryptic comments.