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Comment: Re:Your justice system is flawed, too. (Score 1) 1080

by yndrd1984 (#49260117) Attached to: How To Execute People In the 21st Century

You can't agree to anything just by being born; you aren't even sentient at that point.

Try using that argument to opt out of the "income tax" portion of the social contract.

Well, it didn't work out well for some of my ancestors when they tried to opt out of the "you're a slave" part of the one-sided "contract" they were born into.

On the other hand, some people realize that answering moral questions with appeals to who can inflict the most harm is stupid.

Comment: Re:Circumcised at age 18? (Score 1, Insightful) 221

by yndrd1984 (#49257411) Attached to: World's 1st Penis Transplant Done In South Africa

...I strongly disapprove the hysterical, one-sided tone of the intactivist movement, which I think has potential to harm the body image of circumcised children who grow up with it.

Interesting. Are pro-choice activists 'hysterical' for pushing their particular "my body, my choice" argument? And do they deserve criticism for making women in Ireland who couldn't get abortions feel bad?

Comment: Re:Circumcised at age 18? (Score 1) 221

by yndrd1984 (#49257333) Attached to: World's 1st Penis Transplant Done In South Africa

It must be peculiar to have one's center of being and entire sense of self revolve about one's foreskin. Tell us, what is it like?

It must be peculiar to have one's center of being and entire sense of self revolve around telling other people what they're allowed to care about. Tell us, what is it like?

Comment: Re:Circumcised at age 18? (Score 1) 221

by yndrd1984 (#49257323) Attached to: World's 1st Penis Transplant Done In South Africa

They can both cause destruction, but one is a much larger destruction.

You're comparing one, specific procedure on males (circumcision) to absolutely anything done to a female. It's the equivalent of calling everything from cutting a dorsal slit in a man's foreskin to castration to completely removing the genitalia MGM, and saying it's much worse than merely nicking the clitoral hood.

And of course this argument originates in politics. You're not going convince Americans to go ballistic over FGM if they think it sort of like what they're used to (which is, for exactly the opposite reason, why it was called female circumcision to start with - e.g. "Don't freak out, your culture does things like that, too!"). And unfortunately it gets mixed in with gender politics as well.

Comment: Re:Not at all surprising (Score 1) 187

by yndrd1984 (#49221273) Attached to: China's Arthur C. Clarke

Yes, but the point is that pure laissez faire capitalism in itself does not provide the mechanism to prevent this.

And democracy doesn't provide a magic mechanism to prevent Puerto Ricans from being denied the right to vote. If the only bad thing you can say about a system is that people are capable of following it imperfectly then you really don't have an argument.

So you have to have government and laws, but then the extreme right wingers complain about paying taxes and not being able to beat their legally purchased slaves.

And we've now left the realm of academic discourse in favor of an unhinged political screed...

Comment: Re:Not at all surprising (Score 1) 187

by yndrd1984 (#49211461) Attached to: China's Arthur C. Clarke

Adam Smith wrote that a man had a right to sell his labor.

Right.

What protected that right during the slavery period, in the US?

Nothing. And in that aspect the US was not practicing the system that Smith was describing.

Capitalism needs something outside of it, ...

Almost - Smith presupposed a legal system that (at the very least) attempted to prevent murder, theft and fraud. Capitalism might need something outside of the market, but that's not outside the system.

...because capitalism alone has no morality and perversely incentivizes lying and other sociopathic behavior.

That's true of every economic system - if someone is willing to lie to get money why wouldn't they lie to get a larger ration? The most you can hope to do is reduce the number of rational reasons to cheat, but you can do that without chucking the whole thing out the window (healthcare, social programs, etc) which is how most of the Western world handles it - and fairly successfully, I might add.

Comment: Re:Not so strange (Score 2) 187

by yndrd1984 (#49211331) Attached to: China's Arthur C. Clarke
It sounds like you're referring to "Looking Backward" by Francis Bellamy (the guy who wrote the original Pledge of Allegiance) from the 1880s.

And "saving or hoarding money" in the modern world doesn't "lock up potential resources" - it isn't backed by anything, so taking money out of circulation just raises the value of the remaining currency.

Comment: WTF? (Score 4, Insightful) 584

by yndrd1984 (#48520329) Attached to: Programmer Father Asks: What Gets Little Girls Interested In Science?

What's worse than being a child in a culture that pushes people into stereotypical roles? Having parents that want to dictate their child's interests in order to make themselves look good.

So one day you daughter says she's “ready for princesses” and "part of me died"? Get the fuck over yourself.

Seriously, stop using your own child as a tool for making yourself look like a good progressive and listen to her for a change. When (and if) she wants to be a nerd, she'll let you know - your job is to make sure she knows she has the choice, not make it for her.

Comment: Re:It boils down to energy storage costs (Score 1) 652

by yndrd1984 (#48476191) Attached to: Two Google Engineers Say Renewables Can't Cure Climate Change

Excess energy is probably radiated out. The hotter something is, the more heat it radiates.

So ... the globe probably ... warms ... ?

Water vapor interacts with pretty much the exact same spectrum as CO2, and is far, far more prevalent.

Water is a significantly stronger greenhouse gas than CO2, but because the atmosphere has a limited carrying capacity for water humidity levels tend to stay relatively constant overall. i.e. excess CO2 sticks around for a very long time, excess water gets rained out much more quickly.

And comparing CO2's efficacy in a biological system to its importance in the weather is pretty lame.

On it's own, yes. I just found the juxtaposition amusing.

I am confident that AGW will be shown to be the biggest scam in human history.

And as far as I can tell you're basing this solely on the fact that it doesn't pass your own personal laugh test. That's not a very solid foundation for the claim.

Comment: Re:It boils down to energy storage costs (Score 1) 652

by yndrd1984 (#48464773) Attached to: Two Google Engineers Say Renewables Can't Cure Climate Change

This does not even pass the laugh test.

Actually, your posts are much funnier. First, "Without [CO2], all plant life on earth would be impossible.", but in your very next post you mock people who believe that "a trace gas at 0.04%" could have any effect.

I'm sorry to say this, but you sound like a poe - "it's so small it's can't possibly have any effect our lives, but for God's sake don't lose it or WE'RE ALL GONNA DIE!" or "She couldn't have killed anyone, she only put a little bit of arsenic in that great big water tower.".

There is an extremely complex non-linear partial differential equation that describes...

Except you don't really need any of that. It's fairly straightforward to calculate (and then check by direct measurement) how much less infrared radiation is being emitted by the earth at various wavelengths. And like any physical system, if less energy is leaving then changes will take place to restore equilibrium - it might be higher temperatures, it might be a higher albedo (as through cloud cover), it might be a reduction in some other heat-trapping gas, it might be people pulling CO2 back out. But something, on a rather large scale, is going to have to change, just because of basic thermodynamics.

So even if I didn't know anything else about the subject you're going to have to give me some alternative for what happens to the excess energy, or I'm stuck with the only answer available to me - climate change.

Comment: Re: here we go (Score 1) 834

by yndrd1984 (#48367381) Attached to: How To End Online Harassment

You are not sure women get harassed more than men? Why not?

Because I can't tell the difference between actually getting harassed more and our biases coloring things to look that way.

There is a great deal of room for improvement on the way men treat women.

So you want to talk about harassment - but your opening move is to split people, not into harassers and victims, but by birth group according to your own biases, and insist on that being the framework for the discussion. To me that says that you care less about ending harassment than maintaining your worldview or identity as the 'guy who get it'. (When you say "admitting this doesn't make me less of a man" you're essentially bragging about how you're better than those other guys.)

So try this one:

There is a great deal of room for improvement on the way women treat children and the elderly.

Sure, women abuse the most vulnerable in our society more than men do, but is focusing on that the right way to make progress? Should I base part of my ego on "admitting that women are part of the problem"?

All the simple programs have been written.

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