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Comment Re:Free and Fair Trade = More Jobs (Score 1) 329

Er, no. Not even close.

Even quite a few in favor of free trade are looking at the current landscape and calling it like it is: a rigged game being sold as "free trade". When the direction of the trade is one-way, when the trade agreements the government makes only seems to benefit the moneyed class, when the government fails to enforce its own fucking laws with regards to labor; maybe it's time to take a step back and re-evaluate if these deals really pass the muster of being called "free trade".

The fact that Toyota and Honda have factories in the US, meanwhile Ford and Chevy are increasingly moving their factories to Brazil and Mexico should be your first tip-off that maybe, just maybe the free trade mantra is really only for the benefit of a select few.

Comment Everything old is new again (Score 1) 239

Unfortunately the newest moral panic is the representation of women in video games leading to rape culture, misogyny, and what ever else the moral crusaders have within their sights.

Will we ever learn?

And suppose there was a clear link between videogames and violence, exactly what is to be done? There were riots when the Rites of Spring was first performed, yet it is not damnatio memoriae, almost as if these relationships aren't quite as static as we are lead to believe, which is why there is so much conflicting data.

Most of these "studies" make for a nice pseudo-science justification for a particular set of biases, only a few steps removed from "it is witchcraft" and as luck would have it, nothing of the moral crusaders' most cherished is placed under the same scrutiny.

I have had about enough, thank you, whether it is hate-speech, "radicalization", or whatever mores of the age; surprise! people are influenced from the environment, but that is hardly just cause for the morally indignant to lord over all of creation.

Comment Re:Perhaps, but that isn't to say... (Score 1) 668

there isn't a problem. The tenor of college campuses has changed dramatically over the past 25 years, and if you are a comedian why would you risk a roll of the dice on a media circus? Safe space wasn't a natural part of the lexicon even 5 years ago...

One of the more pernicious affects of censorship is you are never completely aware of the scope and degree what is being censored. Memory hole is apt as if you didn't have direct knowledge, you'd have no reason to suspect anything was missing at all.

Comment Re:Of course ... (Score 1) 315

As far as I know, no one forces you to buy a vehicle (especially if you can't afford it). You also have a few options for motorized transportation (30cc moped, public transport, etc.) that don't require insurance. State I lived in even had the option for you to put up a bond with the state (helpful if you have a large car collection) instead of buying insurance to cover damages.

With the present US healthcare, quite a few people still can't afford insurance, even with government subsidizes, and worse are penalized for it. It's like a tax on being alive. Not to mention the numerous database hacks of health companies, it's not only your health that you are worried about. It's not like you have the option not to do business with them because their security sucks.

All that taken into consideration, it's hard to say if the ACA really saved any money at all.

Comment Re:do most accounts need to be secure? (Score 1) 165


Admins do themselves no favors by making ludicrous demand from lusers like "the password must contain a special character, but may not begin or end with a special character, have two numbers, and can only be be 8 characters long... you got that?".

Or requiring password changes every 60 days, especial for accounts I use maybe bi-yearly. Or refuse recycling passwords. And the list goes on.

Anymore more it is easier just to bang my head against the keyboard as my password and have them email me a new one.

Two step authentication, and One Password to Rule Them All.

Comment USSA (Score 3, Insightful) 284

Supposedly the USSR had copy machines etched so that it was possible to track down the source of aberrant materials. A means of tracking is also done with consumer copiers in the name of reducing fraud, but there is no law restricting it solely to that use.The Federalist Papers would be an anathema today.

Exactly how much further down this rabbit hole do we want to go? Yes, it is fine and good that these measures will only be used with the best of intentions, but if the difference between a police state and your liberal democracy is intentions, you are already fucked.

Comment Re:Bullshit (Score 1) 146

Once we are at the point of self-driving cars, ownership becomes moot (for a lot of people anyway). You now have a taxi service that can eliminate one of the most expensive components, the driver, and allow me to nap gently without having to worry why we are taking the extreme scenic route. Parking structures can be reduced significantly as well as road congestion. I have little need for a personal car once public transport is on-demand and cheap. That will require Big Data to coordinate all of those demands, so they are kinda correct.

Until then, besides status mongers, what several want out of a vehicle is reduced cost. Any time there is a ripple in fuel prices, people gnash their teeth at owning behemoth overlord, and it starts becoming a cost per mile calculation. Not to mention upkeep and reliability.

I mean having the latest golly-gee-whiz gadgetry is nice and all, but manufactures still haven't really solved the transportation issue. Someone builds a $400 car that can get me around, and we'll see how important infotainment really is.

Comment Re:Not only right, it's important (Score 1) 257

To be fair, most people are idiots and are as likely to cause harm as good when trying to help. At least we've gotten past the Kitty Genovese effect (mostly) and at least someone in the crowd will call 911.

Not to mention Good Samaritan laws won't really shield you from a soul-crushing investigation of second-guessing against a backdrop of what would a "reasonable" person do when faced with blood everywhere, body parts, and chaos. I'm reminded of an investigation of the medical staff accused of killing patients during Katrina. Even amid horrendous conditions that defy imagination, someone will asses that you should have always done more. I'm not surprised that more people don't attempt to offer aid.

Anyway, the law of unintended consequences comes to play here, and instead of people documenting or rendering help, I'm sure several will just walk away.

Will he stop people from making phone calls as well? Exactly how broad of a definition of social media is he using?

Comment Sausages (Score 1) 180

To be clear, are there any professions out there that don't suck in some fashion? Is there some magical career that is reasonably compensated, where the management isn't evil, and it is possible to have some semblance of a life outside of work?

The smart money sez that if IT is so awful, maybe it is time to jump ship and look into careers of being plumbers or country doctors.

Or maybe the notion of work culture needs to change, and that is certainly not going to come from above.

Comment Re:Liberty Minded (Score 3, Interesting) 388

Um, no. There is actually a great deal of libertarian thought given to the most effective compromises that can be made since not everyone is on-board with ubermen-against the-world archetype that seems to be in vogue now. In fact, New Hampshire already fits within the geolibertarian model (no sales or income tax, high property tax), which is an anathema to the "taxation is theft" crowd. You can't even set up your corporate structure in the Cayman islands to be rid of it.

Hayek and Friedman already championed the ideas behind basic income as the least destructive way to have social services, and curiously is now being championed by the left. And then there is that whole other left-libertarianism as well.

There has been very considered thought on how to move society in a more libertarian direction without letting the perfect be the enemy of the good. The hardline libertarian types are simply ignorant beyond sloganeering, which is a shame really. Libertarianism has some rather nuanced insights beyond "government is bad, m'kay".

Comment Re:I guess if you have IBM stock, time to sell (Score 4, Insightful) 248

The problem here is that corporate officer jobs have been gaining upwards of 4,000% compared to the plebes. Are they not also subject to the same market forces? I wonder what between these two extremes is different (if you think corporate boards don't operate as protection for the wealthiest, you haven't been paying attention)?

While certainly no one owes you a job, no one owes any business a market either. The fact of the matter is that laws have been bought and sold against labor (the TPP being the latest round) while at the same time workers have been told they don't need to organize when they have labor laws. And here we are.

Slash and burn economics isn't viable either, and eventually those chickens will come to to roost as well, often with bloody results.

Comment Re: Mental Illness Reporting (Score 1) 935

Better- once you get tagged as mentally ill, do you ever have a chance to make it off the list again?

I'm sure putting people in the position of giving up their right to self-protection or seeking treatment will do wonders for reducing the stigma on mental illness. Does Obama have any clue how many SSRIs are prescribed monthly?

As it is, restricting weapons from felons has been a dismal failure, often stripping entire families of their constitutional rights due to one bad actor, or making reintegration strained even more with the lack of social support.

Adding to that clusterfuck with the mentally ill, and possibly reducing social support to them is just plain fucked-up. The mentally ill make up less than 5% of perpetrators, and are 2.5 times more likely to be victims of violent crime.

Way to go.

Comment Re:If you say your Christian, you are Christian... (Score 1) 229

So then logically you are Christian and Anonymous, since there is no membership process. Or no one is Christian since there is no membership process.

Part of the difficulty here is that Anonymous is less a group than a branding exercise. Any of these activities could also come from a group identifying themselves as the People's Front of Judea, yet they don't, as Anonymous has achieved a certain degree of celebrity and others seek to attach their pet cause to that celebrity.

It is interesting to note how Anonymous' evolution on free speech has mirrored that on college campuses. As Anonymous used to antagonize those who would restrict speech online; those people have moved on and the current incarnation is increasingly okay with necessary restrictions, as long as it isn't their speech being restricted.

Comment Re:Just like being on-call (Score 3, Insightful) 151

It's understood that there are going to be differences between what management wants and what the employee wants, and at some shifting point in the middle everyone is at least not miserable.

And money quite honestly is the bare minimum that a job can offer. A co-worker was given two months off so he could fulfill his dream of back-packing through Europe. That type of consideration builds gratitude that will see a business through a rough patch. Most people tend to reciprocate in kind. That aspect of flexibility on the part of the employer is sorely lacking in most labor arrangements.

And for employees that may not be able (or willing) to offer more in times of FUBAR, competent management is able to take this into account and either fire (kidding) those people or at a minimum take pains to reduce the stress load.

The real problems are when management pays lip service to work-life balance, and there is no accommodation coming from their end. That shit won't fly for long.

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