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Comment Sad posters ... (Score 1) 277

Sad but not unexpected to see posters slathering on ad hominem attacks rather than addressing the issues. The subtext of most of the messages here today is unmistakable: the nerve of these savages.

I majored in science at university. I read most of the technical books I was supposed to read. I quit religion as soon as I could get away from it. I can clearly see the progress for humanity fostered by reason, empiricism, and applied technology. But.

When I look at what has been done to this world in the previous century-and-a-half, I accept my share of responsibility for what we've done to this incredible, and only, spaceship we have. Here in the US, from the genocides to the atom-bomb to the water in Flint, it's a cornucopia of disasters. We all know the list. And yet, when someone suggests that we step away from the course we've taken, and seriously consider engaging with some traditional notions of sane, caring, thoughtful stewardship, some of us choose to stomp our feet and demand that the Luddites be pushed aside, that their ideas are laughable, that their "feelings" are just manipulation.

Gentlemen (I assert that most of you are), your exhibition of foot-stomping here today reminds me of Sagan attacking Velikovsky. Not of his apology for attempting to crush another POV without regard for its merits.

Comment Semantics (Score 1) 519

In the past it was said "History is written by the victors." When Reagan characterized the anti-Sandanistas as 'freedom fighters', that was the same process at work.

Until recently, state violence was usually characterized as 'war'. You have two aggressors killing each other for some period of time. There may or may not be a winner.

However politicized the language, however 'tres moderne' that language becomes, it's the same tactic in use for thousands of years. The hundreds of ancient dead countries in the middle east are proof are still Truth speaking. Rallying around the flag may discredit the truth-tellers, but not the Truth. The outcome has been the same for lo, these many thousands of years.

Comment -Make fuel- on the moon? (Score 1) 151

Awfully light on the kinds of fuel that might be made. Pipe dream, but where's the pipe? The moon may or may not have much water ice. Apart making H and O (requiring large storage tanks ... that have to come from Earth) ... what else is there? Where are the BIG CARBON deposits on the moon? No C, no hydrocarbates. Going to bring the carbon from Earth?

This idea might have come from a 12-year-old, so far as the article is concerned. Except that a 12-year-old would probably be more practical.

Comment Re:Get off my lawn, try 50 dollars for 1Mb (Score 1) 209

Cheapskate much?? Back in the days of the 8008 and Z80, I paid $200 each for two 12KB ram boards (had to stuff 96 1-k RAM chips into sockets on each). A couple years later, I got two 16KB factory-soldered 'used' boards for $25 each(snort, what a sucker!). 56K bytes total !! NOONE will ever need more than 56KB.

Comment Re:mdsolar strikes again (Score 1) 311

He probably wouldn't post something about a 'renewable' going offline

I guess since that's been the tactic of the Nuclear Industry since inception (no lead-lined coffins to be found anywhere), perhaps he's just learned from the pros.

And hey, at least when renewables go offline, they don't throw temper tantrums.

Comment Maybe the results can only be as good as the plan. (Score 1) 352

Launching everything we need from Earth is too expensive.

True! And yet for 50 years, I could never help noticing, we have de-orbited everything we've sent up! It seems as though noone has given any thought to making things we spend $$$$$ billions and billions $$$$ putting up there so that it will be useful in the future.

It wasn't that long ago that they were talking about de-orbiting the ISS in 2016 !! Gosh, I wonder if there's anything long-lasting enough in the ISS that might be useful later. Gosh, maybe Henry Ford was ONTO something when he discovered standardization of parts. LEGO seems to have figured out how to make a whole lot of stuff work together. Maybe they could hire LEGO.

Huh. I wonder if a plan would be possible. If there were only a bunch of smart guys sitting around in fancy government buildings looking for something challenging to do something that lasts longer than the next election. Instead of looking for more ways to throw more money into the Right pockets.

Comment Damn tree huggers (Score 3, Insightful) 444

The first Earth Day took place on April 22, 1970, to " to create awareness for the Earth's environment and to encourage conservation efforts."

The phrase "Damn tree huggers" has been heard ever since. Yeah, even in Iowa. So, 40 years of deliberate ignorance and acrimony is coming home to roost? Tough grid.

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