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Comment: Re:Not going to be as rosy as the YES! campaign sa (Score 1) 199

by bigpat (#47927259) Attached to: Scotland's Independence Vote Could Shake Up Industry
A smooth transition isn't a "handout", it would be in the best interest of both sides. Regardless of the outcome they still have to live side by side on the same island and will be a major trading partner. Amicable divorces are much better than pointlessly bitter ones.

Comment: Re:This isn't scaremongering. (Score 1) 199

by bigpat (#47926309) Attached to: Scotland's Independence Vote Could Shake Up Industry
I think it is quite clearly scare mongering or worse, threatening. The UK government agreed to this vote and they should be making assurances that whichever the outcome that the UK government will do its best to facilitate a peaceful and mutually beneficial transition. Two independent states can share a currency... the EU proves that currency unions are possible. And if the EU were to exclude Scotland, then that would be the first time the EU will have contracted instead of expanding which would undermine confidence in the EU itself just as it was regaining it. Certainly there will be costs to establishing and negotiating a transition, but to assume a worst case scenario and that people will act in a destructive way against their mutual interests out of some sort of royal spite is not helpful.

Comment: Re:Not going to be as rosy as the YES! campaign sa (Score 2) 199

by bigpat (#47926209) Attached to: Scotland's Independence Vote Could Shake Up Industry
I think it would be fairly cynical of the English side to allow a vote on independence and then screw over Scotland as an 'I told you so'. The best thing for everyone would be to facilitate a peaceful and mutually beneficial transition. That means cooperating with the Bank of Scotland to keep the Pound if they want to and doing nothing to make EU membership difficult. This isn't some sort of armed rebellion. The UK agreed to this vote. If the remaining UK screws over Scotland out of regret for allowing independence, then it would hurt the UK just as much as it would Scotland.

Comment: Re: This is why my hair always stands on end (Score 1) 273

by bigpat (#47923447) Attached to: New Global Plan Would Crack Down On Corporate Tax Avoidance
The perfect example of this is the tax on dividends which should be exactly the same rate as other income, but it was argued that it was already being taxed as corporate profits so the rate was set lower. The perverse effect is that people that actually make a wage or salary would pay higher income tax rates compared to those who can shift their income to dividends.

Comment: Re: Most taxes are legalized theft (Score 2) 273

by bigpat (#47923351) Attached to: New Global Plan Would Crack Down On Corporate Tax Avoidance
It is hard to convince people they are better off knowing how much is really being taken from them. But the worst things about indirect or obfuscated taxation are that it is harder to have an informed electorate when taxation is hidden so indirect taxes undermine Liberty and democratic systems and it is harder for even the most well informed to accurately judge whether the tax burden is equitable, progressive or regressive. As far as I can tell the tax system is primarily responsible for the erosion of the middle-class in the US because it is a regressive burden on the middle-class more so than the very wealthy. But try convincing a wealthy person that the higher tax bracket they see and combined taxation is actually less of a tax burden on them than the middle-class. Most people just don't understand how insideous and distorting indirect taxation can be to all our perceptions.

Comment: Re:What now? (Score 1) 131

by bigpat (#47912573) Attached to: The FCC Net Neutrality Comment Deadline Has Arrived: What Now?

When I say "corrupt" when referring to a body of government I usually mean systemically corrupt and not just the paper bag full of money under the table kind of corruption or the laundered campaign contributions or jobs for friends and family kind of corruption which corrupts individuals.

In the systemically corrupt sense the FCC itself is a corruption of a representative form of government in that it is a complete abdication of lawmaking authority by Congress and the President to a commission made up of people who have made big money in the industry they supposedly regulate and to which they undoubtedly expect to return to make big money especially when they are rewarded by the industry for the regulations they craft. So it is both systemically corrupt in that it is a corruption of lawmaking authority which should be held by Congress and the president and not delegated to an unelected commission, but it is also clearly individually corrupt with most of the commissioners deep in the pocket and beholden to the industry they regulate.

Comment: Re: they really think... (Score 2) 73

by bigpat (#47901719) Attached to: NSA Metadata Collection Gets 90-Day Extension
Nobody thinks that this law does anything to curtail mass surveillance. They just added some language to make it appear to restrict phone call record collection, but since everyone calls the phone company and even terrorists can order pizza or call any one of a million phone numbers that are common to everyone, then restricting the number of hops to anything more than one "hop" means they can still collect every single phone record. This law is about distraction and plausible deniability for Congress people.

Comment: Re: Fucking Government doesn't care about US (Score 1) 73

by bigpat (#47901607) Attached to: NSA Metadata Collection Gets 90-Day Extension
The fourth amendment doesn't need to be "extended" by laws. The fourth amendment is a limitation on what laws and government action are constitutional. The current and proposed mass surveillance laws are a blatant violation of the 4th amendment and so are the actions of the Obama administration.

Comment: Re:Not just Reno (Score 1) 441

by bigpat (#47893291) Attached to: If Tesla Can Run Its Gigafactory On 100% Renewables, Why Can't Others?

Renewables alone are going to be insufficient for the world's energy needs.

The energy needs of a world with no more people could easily be covered by renewables.

Easily... meaning after another 50 to 100 years of large scale fossil fuel emissions? Because even for developed economies with plenty of resources it is looking like 20, 30 or even 40 years to get to 100% renewables. Even if you believe that that would be a good thing for the environment, which I think that really 100% renewables would be a bigger negative impact on the environment than keeping a large percentage of nuclear is. That still means that developing economies are going to have to also have to stay away from coal, oil and natural gas for their own economic development.

Comment: Re: Not just Reno (Score 2) 441

by bigpat (#47890241) Attached to: If Tesla Can Run Its Gigafactory On 100% Renewables, Why Can't Others?

people don't understand until you tell them nuclear fuel is a million times more energy dense than chemical fuel.

Could have just left it at "people don't understand"... The PR problem is that nuclear is economically disruptive to the fossil fuel industry so there is a lot of money at stake in spreading fear uncertainty and doubt about nuclear. The industry doesn't really fear solar or wind, because it isn't a large scale or near term threat for fossil fuel dominance. Compared with even a single new nuclear power plant which can power a large part of an entire region with consistent electricity and combined with an affordable and economically viable electric car that combination could almost completely replace fossil fuels.

"Only the hypocrite is really rotten to the core." -- Hannah Arendt.

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