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Comment Re:Bullshit! (Score 1) 421

"Wealth used to be based on land and natural resources, true, but this was proven to be wrong by the late 1600s."

I don't think that such a thing can possibly be "proven" to be wrong. In fact, the economist Henry George in his book "Progress and Poverty" makes a very compelling argument which suggests that monopolization of land and resources is the fundamental mechanism by which vast disparities in wealth are created and perpetuated.

Condensing his arguments here would be impossible, but basically, if the rules of your society prevent you from accessing land and resources, you are automatically deprived of the ability to lead a self-determined and "free" existence. If you have no access to land or resources, you have no access to shelter, no way to grow food, hunt game, raise animals, etc. In the extreme case of resource privatization, you would have no access to air or water. George therefore argues for a system which levies taxes on land and resources as opposed to one that taxes productive activity.

It makes sense to me because the amount of land is fixed, so unlike taxing income, you don't create a dis-incentive for engaging in productive activity. I think the ideal public policy would be one based on a hybridization of the Austrian and George theories of economics, applied in the context of a limited Constitutional government.

Education

Submission + - Sesame Street DVD Deemed Adult-Only Entertainment

theodp writes: "The earliest episodes of Sesame Street are being made available on DVD, but the NYT notes Volumes 1 and 2 carry a rather strange warning: 'These early 'Sesame Street' episodes are intended for grown-ups, and may not suit the needs of today's preschool child.' So why are they unsuitable for toddlers in 2007? Well, in the parody 'Monsterpiece Theater,' Alistair Cookie — played by Cookie Monster — used to appear with a pipe, which he later gobbled. 'That modeled the wrong behavior,' explained a Sesame Street executive producer, adding that 'we might not be able to create a character like Oscar [the Grouch] now.'"
Graphics

Submission + - Real-time raytracing for PC games almost a reality (pcper.com)

Vigile writes: "Real-time raytracing has often been called the pinnacle for computer rendering for games but only recently has it been getting traction in the field. A German student, and now Intel employee, has been working on raytraced versions of the Quake 3 and Quake 4 game engines for years and is now using the power of Intel's development teams to push the technology further. With antialiasing implemented and anisotropic filtering close behind, they speculate that within two years the hardware will exist on the desktop to make "game quality" raytracing graphics a reality."

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