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Comment: Re: Reform to how we fund elections is primary (Score 1) 117

by JWW (#47392959) Attached to: Lessig's Mayday PAC Scrambling To Cross Crowd Funding Finish Line

Thank you, that is a well thought out and reasoned answer. That's what I was looking for with my question to Lessig.

I can fully understand that term limits may be a "next thing" sort of activity for his PAC. But without an answer to my question, the answer could also be that he doesn't believe that they are important and will eventually be needed.

I really sincerely wanted to know his answer.

Comment: Re: How about (Score 5, Insightful) 375

It never ceases to amaze me how Progressives can so blithely condemn BIG corporations and their answer to solving the "BIG Corporation" problem is always to give more power to the largest, most powerful organization on the planet. Because large size causes corruption in companies, but it must only cause nobility in governments, right?

Comment: Re: If you take the bait (Score 5, Interesting) 117

by JWW (#47386187) Attached to: Lessig's Mayday PAC Scrambling To Cross Crowd Funding Finish Line

Exactly! I refuse it to support Mayday until they stand up for term limits. I asked a question about this in the "Ask Larry about Mayday" story. Then they used a "new and improved format" for his responses and dumped my +5 rated question.

Mayday, if they succeed will give us the same thing we have now, lifetime legislators. Their voucher system will end up a Massive advantage to incumbents.

Comment: Title is wrong (Score 5, Insightful) 42

The title to this article is wrong it should be:

Slashdot throws your questions in the fucking garbage and asks Lawrence Lessig a bunch of other stuff.

The trashing of any and all questions about term limits was unacceptable.

I was actually really looking forward to getting Larry's answers to OUR questions.

I couldn't be more disappointed.

Comment: Re:Didn't answer anyone's questions directly, did (Score 1) 42


Worst. Fucking. Slashdot. Q&A. Ever.

I got a +5 rated question about whether Mayday would support term limits on congress, and you didn't even fucking ask it and Larry sure as hell didn't say anything to indicate Mayday's stance on it.

Also, in the first video he sidestepped the answer about corporations making movies and writing books about candidates. Citizens United was a fucking LLC that made a political documentary, that's what Mayday is ostensibly fighting against. So don't fucking tell me that political documentaries would be unaffected.

And what the hell are vouchers going to fix when incumbents will end up receiving most of them anyway? Voters will just give their money to the person whose name they know. Its not going to stop old fossils from getting reelected to congress until they die.

This was a fucking promotional video created by Dice for Mayday PAC.

It sure as hell wasn't Lawrence Lessig answering my (or anyone else's) questions.

Comment: Advertising =/= scientific research (Score 1) 219

by langelgjm (#47349299) Attached to: Facebook's Emotion Experiment: Too Far, Or Social Network Norm?

It's different from A/B testing in that the experiment is explicitly designed to cause harm to half of the participants.

Presumably most A/B testing would be designed to figure out which choice performs better on a set of metrics. But going in, there is little evidence to point to one or the other, and the "harm" caused would simply be in user experience. In this experiment, the researchers had a prior theory about which choice would cause harm, and the harm is emotional and psychological.

All that aside, if this was purely internal research at Facebook, it would still likely be unethical but probably nothing out of the ordinary. The fundamental different is that this is being presented as scientific research. It's published in PNAS. It involve three co-authors from various universities. There are standards, both legal and ethical, that must be followed when engaging in scientific research, and the concern is that such standards were perhaps not followed.

Manipulation and even inducing harm may be widespread throughout the advertising industry, but that's advertising, not science.

Comment: It's called the Common Rule (Score 5, Interesting) 130

by langelgjm (#47344225) Attached to: In 2012, Facebook Altered Content To Tweak Readers' Emotions

It's called the Common Rule, although it generally only applies to federally funded research. There is some evidence that this study was in part federally funded. I think there are serious questions about whether a click-through agreement meets the standards of informed consent.

Although the study was approved by an institutional review board, I'm surprised, and the comment from the Princeton editor makes me wonder how well they understood the research design (or how clearly it was explained to them). This would never have gotten past my IRB.

Comment: Re:Some people may not afford to work less. (Score 1) 710

by langelgjm (#47314067) Attached to: Workaholism In America Is Hurting the Economy

I'm sure there are stats on this, but I was under the impression that most people working more than 40 hours a week were salaried and overtime exempt, so they don't see any extra income from the extra work.

I would be surprised if it were otherwise - employers loathe time-and-a-half overtime pay, and would consider it unaffordable to pay someone for all those extra hours.

Comment: Citizens United (Score 3, Insightful) 308

by JWW (#47298937) Attached to: Interviews: Ask Lawrence Lessig About His Mayday PAC

Mr. Lessig,

Since it seems that your PAC espouses the belief that Citizens United is a horrible supreme court ruling, and noting that the key product of the Citizens United LLC was a Documentary, and also noting that almost all documentaries are backed by or produced by corporations of one form or another; aren't you explicitly calling for the total prohibition of political documentaries in our political system? Also, is the publishing by major corporations (this includes all publishing companies) of books that are about politicians or from politicians required to be banned to take money out of politics?

Comment: Term Limits (Score 4, Interesting) 308

by JWW (#47298591) Attached to: Interviews: Ask Lawrence Lessig About His Mayday PAC

Mr. Lessig,

Have you considered the potential side effect that if you are successful in removing "money from politics"? You will likely end up enormously empowering the position of incumbency, establishing a ruling class that once elected, no one will have the capabilities to truly mount a successful campaign against.

Incumbents have huge benefits and a large number of tools to communicate to the voters (who are of course their constituents, so they can even justify it).

My great fear is that campaign finance reform will do nothing to stem the tide of permanent, lifetime, politicians dominating our system. Even in the worst election for incumbents in a half century (2010) over 80% of incumbents won.

Will you support and make your backed candidates support a constitutional amendment to create and enforce term limits on members of Congress?

If Mayday can't support term limits, then I can't support it. In fact I may feel compelled to fight against it. I don't even really want money out of politics if it leads to lifetime memberships in Congress for the lucky ones that achieve office once, and then never lose again until they die.

Comment: What about statistics vs calculus (Score 4, Insightful) 155

by langelgjm (#47292757) Attached to: Computational Thinking: AP Computer Science Vs AP Statistics?

It's not really a new debate, but the assumption that high school students will on average be better served by taking calculus instead of statistics could use some scrutiny.

Practically speaking, basic familiarity with statistics is also a form of civics - teaching kids when to call BS on bogus claims, helping them to understand what statistical significance means and doesn't mean, etc.

If you're not part of the solution, you're part of the precipitate.