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Comment Re:this is what the 2nd amendment is for (Score 1) 217

In no way would life continue as normal if the financial system collapsed.

The only chance it wouldn't be as much of a disaster is if the leaders were very fast and very pragmatic about it.

Chances are, you'd be looking at anarchy or martial law or both.

Locally, you might be able to work out a deal by which you could still get produce to people, but long range transportation, with all the risks that this entails requires the ability to invest in ventures with less certain outcomes. And we require a lot of things that are now shipped very long distances.

Comment Re:Proof that you don't want govt spending your mo (Score 1) 217

Please don't lump all conservatives in with the Tea Party. That's like saying that all progressives are eco-crazies.

As for the talk, presumably this guy did his research which, if done correctly, should be more scientific than your (or my) anecdotal evidence.

That said, it is clear that there are people who value some things more than others. I could believe that what he said is true, if you look at progressive vs. conservative labelled programs and platforms.

Comment Re: A Conservative Response (Score 2) 217

Fish are very well aware they are swimming in water, just as you or I are aware that we need air.

Of course, I know what the point are trying to make is, but I disagree.

People complain about "first world problems" all the time, but despite the idea that we are in some absolute sense better off than some guy in equatorial Africa, it doesn't matter. If you feel persecuted by certain actions, the feeling of persecution is real. It doesn't help to tell me that you have it worse than I do and leave it at that.

People kill themselves all the time because of bullying or social stigma or some other cause that, frankly, just makes their lives difficult, but does not end it. Yet we have nothing but understanding for those people, despite the fact that in other places in the world, they live poorer lives in terms of resources, the only difference being that they are so used to it, that they could even consider today's level of relative poverty to actually be a "good year" and be happy about it.

In this case, everyone feels persecuted, which is the major problem. I might feel persecuted, perhaps, because I worked extremely hard to make the grade, and the woman or the minority who didn't have to breezed into my school of choice. You can argue that it is "fair" to them to give them opportunity, and that is true, but opportunity provided to someone else, is opportunity denied to others.

You can point at a privilege unearned, but also unasked for, and suggest that someone not feel bad that they are denied an opportunity for that reason, but that's not going to cut it. That's exactly like saying that you are allowed into this school because you're white and I'm black. There is fundamentally no difference to the individual. Especially when the theoretical criteria for entry was supposed to have been merit, and not connections or exclusion.

Two people worked to master their schooling. The person who did not do as well got the position, and even if the person who lost out worked four times as hard and got an A+ instead of an A, they'd still be out of an opportunity to the B student or they'd simply consign some other student in the "wrong" group to lose their opportunity.

Perhaps the policy decision is the right one for the country. You can make that argument. What you cannot do is suggest that the people who feel the anger of discrimination are faking it. The truth is that our policy is currently that the solution to discrimination is discrimination. There is a price to that policy, and that price is anger. Please don't suggest that this should make people happy. It won't and it is wrong to expect that.

Comment Re:Single parents (Score 2) 217

We know a child will be much more successful in life if they are raised by a mother and father.

No we don't "know" that because it isn't actually true. Most studies of this sort of thing badly confuse correlation with causation and fail to control for other factors. Having a mother and a father can help but the relationship between success (which you conveniently didn't define) and living in a traditional Norman Rockwell family is a weak one. What matters is having parents and guardians and family that are involved. Whether they are married or not is irrelevant.

Maybe on an individual level, in the sense that you have really bad parents, as opposed to the one single parent who is both saintly and super capable.

However, for the most part, I can't even see how you are making that argument. There is no benefit whatsoever to a single parent scenario, although there may be fewer disadvantages in specific cases if you delete an abusive parent from the mix.

There are some instances where it is unavoidable to have a single parent and I don't ever criticize the decision to care for the child you produced. What I would criticize is a program which increases suffering by rewarding bad decisions across the board in the name of misguided charity.

There are always going to be situations where things go badly for some people. The problem is that charity in some cases doesn't always end the problem, sometimes it simply moves the problem. If the problem is childhood starvation, then feeding the children would work, unless a damaged thought process in a parent keeps producing children, maintaining her or her family consistently at the level where checks are required. In that case, all you have done is give away more money, but now you have more children. And money is not the only thing needed to raise a child.

Having a single parent is not a determination of failure. If you were to suggest that you're happy, prosperous, and well-adjusted, I would believe you.

Nevertheless, it is a risk condition. If you're doing well, you're doing well in spite of that disadvantage, not because of it. When we take scenarios of single parenthood across the board in a society, it is a situation which carries costs. Those costs must be paid by someone. Therefore, it pays for us to not encourage any thought processes which make bad decisions more likely.

Comment Re:Can't see past step 1 (Score 1) 217

I didn't see a moral argument there. I saw an economic and pragmatic one.

A single mother is the sole breadwinner of a family. Consequently, she has fewer cycles for child rearing. This causes problems, full stop.

The same would go for a single father too, of course. I think the reason for focusing on mothers is that they end up with the babies most of the time.

Unless raped, a woman does have a choice whether to have sex or not. For that matter a man does too.

If you're suggesting that divorce or orphans are the other scenarios, programs or even better, private charity can focus on those scenarios without giving a green light to irresponsible behavior.

I'm not against giving money to people who need it, but there can be consequences to doing it in a certain manner. You're giving away other people's money for other people's bad decisions. There should be some way of ensuring that this charity does not actually magnify the problem and thus increase suffering.

Comment Re:Blaming KKKorporations (Score 1) 217

That's true. I have a lot of sour grapes against the no bid contracts that I haven't gotten. That's only waste because I'm not getting money to do something without some sort of vetting process. I would totally love the situation if the government just gave me money and I didn't even have to compete.

That doesn't mean that the money isn't being wasted on me or the other people getting it.

Also, the *target* of the money isn't the waste, government waste is the process by which that money is first inefficiently disbursed by a government by following bureaucratic and labyrinthine regulations which are supposed to not only ensure fair distribution, and provide political benefits but also reporting and efficient use of those monies. And then *totally failing to do any of that (except the politics) and continuing to have gigantic budget overruns*

It is one thing to have a trillion dollar F-35, or a vastly expensive entitlement program. It is a completely different thing to have all of that *after* all of the wonderful regulations on top of regulations which are supposed to make those things "safe", "cheap", and "fair".

You could probably go to evil mega-corporations directly, buy "safe" and "fair" options off their luxury a la carte price list, and probably come in cheaper than having the government do it for "free".

Comment Re:I love it (Score 1) 260

That depends on whether the baby is taken in isolation and assumed to always survive gestation in the nine month period required.

Assigning one woman to baby creation actually is a probability of less than 100% to have that baby created in a nine month period due to complications of pregnancy and the occasional project terminations. Therefore, assigning two or more women is more likely to create one baby, over many attempts in a nine month period, than one woman being assigned to that task.

Still, it probably does not require nine women. We can definitely get that efficiency down to less than four.

Comment Re:Laughable (Score 1) 179

In the olden days, you fed yourself by killing your own food and finding your own firewood. While that was "free", you had to find it, transport it, prepare it, store it, and just about everything else.

Now, you get that stuff piped to your house, or you might actually have to go to a store and get it. Even poor people have the possibility of comforts that even rich people didn't have in the past.

I agree that the prices can strain the ability for us to keep up with them, but even this capitalist world is an objectively and qualitatively better place to live, despite its shortcomings. Unless you like hunting your own food, of course.

Would a "social democracy" be better? Maybe, but we've seen it has pitfalls too.

The point is, nothing is free, you're going to pay one way or another. It's a matter of choosing how you you do it.

Comment Re:Benefit to end users? (Score 1) 523

This is a snit really, but it is something where Linus doesn't like the feature, and this guy has been on the other end of a Linus blow-up and seen many others.

I'll say this much, it is well known how Linus goes off. Some justify it as Linus only blowing up after he's annoyed constantly by something or someone. And some believe that is the same as wife-beater giving warnings before bitch-slapping his target down.

The reality is, unless this change is groundbreaking, or extremely desired, nothing is going to change.

However, if the fork is taken up by some important minority of users/developers/etc, it could be news in the future. I don't think this represents an actual revolt against the mood of the kernel maintainers list. That sort of problem would probably manifest in a slower sort of drift of maintainers away from the project unless Linus comes out as homophobic, racist, sexist, and a scientologist all at the same time in one explosive email of epic proportions.

Either way, I don't think that the other issue of Linus' behavior is going to really change anything. It's not like he's suddenly developed Tourette's or something. Linus is Linus and most kernel maintainers are probably either able to handle it or at least they have figured out how to shield themselves from being too beaten up by it.

Comment Re:Obvious ruling (Score 1) 179

google, facebook, twitter, microsoft, cloud computing services etc... will have to open their wallets and create data centers inside single EU countries.

These businesses already have data centers inside the EU. This doesn't affect them except for some new language and maybe some documentation adjustments.

Comment Re:Obvious ruling (Score 1) 179

It is a problem if the US business has EU customers. Not that the US business can be sued, but the EU customer may be a business itself, who then is sued by their employees if the personal data is removed from the EU.

That means that the EU businesses might be forced to drop US businesses if they can't comply or open a European subsidiary.

Comment Re:Natural effects of a maturing field? (Score 1) 348

That actually didn't happen with union organization before the government stepped in. You did get strikers who stayed on strike even when they lost their jobs or scabs were brought in.

And here I should also point out that there are enough well-off IT workers that a strike fund could fairly easily be raised. Certainly if miners are intelligent enough to figure out that they could force changes if they held out long enough, IT workers might as well.

What happened during union organization of mines and factories was that the government (or at least local government) sided with the mine owners. They then shot or dealt with organizers by throwing them in jail.

Certainly, that sort of thing would not be permissible even under a more libertarian view of unionization. The government would not be allowed to intervene on either side. They would be there to keep the peace and enforce legal contracts, freely entered into.

What the real problem is, from this perspective, is that most IT workers do not feel like they *need* to organize. For the most part, we're well paid, our job is not particularly dangerous, and even laid off workers find other jobs relatively readily.

So that does bring us to the question: Are we really as bad off as we think we are?