Slashdot stories can be listened to in audio form via an RSS feed, as read by our own robotic overlord.

 



Forgot your password?
typodupeerror

Comment: Re:Breakdown of adult interaction, oral tradition? (Score 1) 272

by sjames (#48901117) Attached to: Americans Support Mandatory Labeling of Food That Contains DNA

It comes in all forms as well. I remember when I was 8 or 9, wandering around on top of Stone Mountain. I started talking to an elderly security guard and he was in the mood for a story, so he told me about when the KKK used to meet on the mountain. I can't say thje message itself was necessarily what a parent would want their child to hear, but I knew enough to understand that he was telling a story from a different time. It wasn't until then that I actually understood racism to be a real and ugly thing rather than a set of facts in a text book. I also learned a lot about how normal that level of racisim seemed to someone from that time and how people (especially older people) may be a product of their time. No amount of droning on in a classroom could have taught that so well.

I suppose today, he wouldn't have had time to tell me that story because some MBA looking for an excuse to get rid of him would have called it goofing off. Given that part of the park's mission is teaching, he couldn't have been more on-task.

That's what's really missing. Time and energy. Families just don't have it anymore while trying to make ends meet. Nobody else really does either.

Comment: Re:its a tough subject (Score 1) 634

by sjames (#48899591) Attached to: Should Disney Require Its Employees To Be Vaccinated?

They are quite rare, but unlike the debunked autism claim, there is not a long delay from the vaccine to the reaction.

For example, anaphylaxis is goiing to happen fairly quickly if it is going to happen.

Disseminated encephalomyelitis (acute or recurring) can be set off by either a viral infection or a vaccine. Since a vaccine shouldn't be given is a current viral infection is suspected, if it happens shortly after a vaccination, it's fairly clear that either the vaccine caused it or that it should not have been given at that time.

The exceptionally rare immune system failures that can happen after a vaccine don't just spontaneously happen.

If a whole lot of a vaccine is bad, statistics do a decent job of determining that the vaccine was to blame. For example, this article where a lot polio vaccine gave the kids polio. Here is a study of DTP reactions.

The fact that the existence of severe reactions is known shows that it is statistically verifiable. Individual cases can never be proven to perfect certainty, but in the U.S. the standard for liability is preponderance of the evidence.

Looked at from another direction, justice requires that if government shields the manufacturer from liability, it must stand in and accept the liability itself.

Comment: Re:its a tough subject (Score 1) 634

by sjames (#48896897) Attached to: Should Disney Require Its Employees To Be Vaccinated?

I agree that a societal solution is needed.

If employers can discriminate for not getting the vax, it is constructively mandatory. I agree that un-vaccinated students should stay home during an outbreak. Likewise employees. That is a matter of a clear and present danger.

Considering that a vaccine reaction can leave a person with lifelong disability and high ongoing bills for care, few can afford the risk alone. We already have a compensation program coupled with a liability shield for the manufacturers since otherwise nobody would manufacture the vaccine. We just need to make it actually support those very few who need it, not just barely keep them out of poverty.

Comment: Re:its a tough subject (Score 1) 634

by sjames (#48896727) Attached to: Should Disney Require Its Employees To Be Vaccinated?

A real issue is that if vaccinations become mandatory for employment. you can bet more than one radical church will decide they must be the mark of the beast and then we have a real issue.

But consider, the measles start out with flu-like symptoms. IF you feel free to stay out of work right then, you won't spread the disease. A few days later, the characteristic red rash appears to let you know it's not the flu, but by then you have been contagious for 3 days and will be for another 3. Even then, many clueless employers will insist that you must go to a doctor at the height of your contagiousness and sit in a public waiting room so you can bring a doctor's note with you when you return (or don't bother to return at all).

That situation CAN come up even if your vaccinations are in order.

I'm not so sure about making the vaccination absolutely mandatory, but I would like to see them made very easy to get, preferably they should be practically automatic. For example, have an RN on hand at school registration ready and willing to give the vaccine for free to any child that doesn't have one. As a bonus, have her hand out candy after the shot or when vaccination records are presented. Let the kids wear the parents down :-) If necessary, tell them that resistance to measles is a super power.

And make sure that the very rare but existent harmful reaction is very well compensated. After all, it happened in service to society.

Comment: Re:Doubtful (Score 1) 293

by sjames (#48895591) Attached to: UHD Spec Stomps on Current Blu-ray Spec, But Will Consumers Notice?

That's how I ended up with one. It does look nice, but I'm glad I waited until the old TV failed.

I did not upgrade the satellite receiver or the DVD player. That means that oddly enough, I can either watch network shows in 480p over the satellite or 1080p OTA. But I find myself not being enthused enough by the extra resolution to bother switching over even though I can see the difference.

In short, it's not at all bad, but Its not so good that I will actually make any effort to get it, much less pay for it.

Comment: Re:Why would you want this? (Score 1) 176

by sjames (#48890807) Attached to: New Nicotine Vaccine May Succeed Where Others Have Failed

In general, nicotine probably isn't all sunshine and lolipops. Smoking is much worse. But it seems that the vaccine approach is probably not a good way to stop smoking. It may or may not affect a great many valuable drugs coming down the pipe. It certainly won't be pleasant for the patient (all that craving, no way to answer it).

Nicotine replacement isn't ideal, but it has the advantage of working without introducing new risks. It seems that in many cases, a less structured long term approach causes eventual reduction or cessation while short programmed steps result in a return to cigarettes. It also allows those who are unknowingly self-medicating to continue doing so.

The tumor enhancing effect of angiogenesis is troubling but at the same time, that would benefit a coronary artery blockage.

It may be that nicotine in the absence of smoking is worth it.

What this country needs is a good five cent ANYTHING!

Working...