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Comment: Re:Millionare panhandlers (Score 1) 142

by drinkypoo (#47537697) Attached to: Cable Companies: We're Afraid Netflix Will Demand Payment From ISPs

A lot of the shelters are downright evil, though, especially the religious ones. A lot of them really push religion hard, and some of them won't help you if you don't spend an hour in church or whatever. Get 'em while they're vulnerable, then do just enough to make sure they receive your message.

Comment: Re:And... (Score 1) 223

Thats cute, you think Outlook is an email client. (...) Hint: Email is about 1/10th of what Outlook is and does.

He did say small company. which makes it fairly plausible. Many pay a lot for Outlook/Office and use it only for email, meeting scheduling and simple documents/spreadsheets because it's the de facto corporate standard.

Comment: Re:Lumping everyone together.... (Score 1) 357

by Reziac (#47535655) Attached to: Western US States Using Up Ground Water At an Alarming Rate

That's a good point -- stored water might as well go into the ground (and be used) as into the air (which one might argue becomes rain somewhere to the east, but that does Utah no good, and Utah needs it a lot more).

In the process of moving back to Montana from SoCal, I made numerous trips along both I-15 and routes further west, and I was quite struck by how the states that scream the loudest about conservation and that do the most enforcing against common use of resources... are also in the worst shape. Utah looks the best both agriculturally and industrially -- it seems to have a great deal more local industry than any other western state, yet it looks the most pristine and green, and sports a healthy ag sector. Montana and the agricultural parts of Nevada are also in good shape, as is much of Idaho. But you can just about draw a line around CA and OR solely by the poor condition of what used to be good graze and forest land, and now looks a great deal more drought-stricken than do drier areas further inland.

Comment: Re:One small way I try to help. (Score 1) 258

I don't get why more people don't do this.

The answer to that question is simple: gardening can be a chore. The benefits have to outweigh the effort, and I think for a lot of people the effort is too much. I used to keep a garden, but I found that I did not get that much enjoyment out of tending one. It was great to have the fresh tomatoes, eggplant and chiles, but not THAT great. Even though it wasn't for me, I think you will see more people starting to do this as the effort/benefits ratio begins to tilt. If I ever do it again, I think I'll try just putting out a few plants in pots, rather than lots of plants in beds.

Comment: Re:ALL RIGHT! (Score 1) 357

by Reziac (#47533027) Attached to: Western US States Using Up Ground Water At an Alarming Rate

Where I lived in the SoCal desert, the water was so high in calcium that for those drinking tap water (which mostly came from deep wells), there was no such thing as calcium deficiency. It was largely a retirement community, and you never saw so many 80 year olds with ramrod-straight spines. You could actually spot older folks who drank bottled water -- by their curved spines.

And it's good-tasting water. Personally I don't like soft water, it tastes like dust.

When you get bad water in SoCal, it's usually not the water -- it's the pipes. Plastic pipes react with chlorine and the result tastes like a corpse. Let the water run til fresh stuff from the mains reaches the spigot, and suddenly you have good water again.

Now, northern plains water from shallow wells, that's nasty stuff -- too much magnesium so it tastes like Epsom salts, or occasionally like rotting plastic. Drill down to a deeper water layer, tho, and the problem usually goes away.

Comment: Re:Why I'm on a well in a sustainable aquifer. (Score 1) 357

by Reziac (#47532897) Attached to: Western US States Using Up Ground Water At an Alarming Rate

In Los Angeles County, what they did about it was confiscate all the private wells. Consider that a well out in the north county costs around $50,000 (give or take 10 grand) and you'll see it's not a minor taking. After a major flap they graciously ceded 3 acre-feet back to each landowner. I haven't heard how they plan to enforce this; probably by making everyone pay for a limiting meter on their well.

It's actually much cheaper to hook up to a private water supplier: about $15,000 and water costs about 1/4th as much per gallon. (Well water is not free if you pay for diesel or electricity to pump it. At current electric rates, domestic water is about 1 cent per 10 gallons.) However, private water companies only serve very limited areas, and are not an option for most people... but they're trying to grab everyone they can reach, and have gotten county law changed to enforce this... I was told that to my face by the owners of two different private water companies out in the desert. Guess who has wells down into the deep aquifer, and were not affected by the confiscation.

Comment: Re:The "Your mileage may vary" problem (Score 1) 524

by Reziac (#47532831) Attached to: Laser Eye Surgery, Revisited 10 Years Later

That's interesting about the bruising. I've had maybe a dozen blood draws in my life and never a bruise, but I have thick tough veins that defy all but the most experienced phlebotomists. (I don't usually bruise unless whacked really hard, and sometimes not even then. I also have tough thick skin; I wonder if the two are related. Per actual tests, I clot about average.)

From a safety standpoint, I doubt anyone has ever died from Lasik itself (anaesthesia reactions aside). But from what I've read, there is a broad range of competence, and one does well to research prospective doctors.

Comment: Re:Lumping everyone together.... (Score 1) 357

by Reziac (#47532705) Attached to: Western US States Using Up Ground Water At an Alarming Rate

Despite which, Utah is one of the greener western states -- even in its desert ag areas. Methinks when you actually manage your water, you also get more use of it. And contrary to city-slicker belief, there is no one more conservation-conscious than farmers; it's their very livelihood.

And on your list of cities, don't forget that California diverts a great deal of water to its major metros, with scant regard for what becomes of agriculture. I guess city folks don't need to eat.

I rant about that somewhere above, but here's an example:
http://www.sacbee.com/2014/01/...

Comment: Re:PBS covered this (Score 1) 357

by Reziac (#47532647) Attached to: Western US States Using Up Ground Water At an Alarming Rate

Let me fix that for him:

"I expect when we run out this next decade, everyone will be very angry over the decisions we made to plant water-intensive cities in a very arid land for so many years".

I suspect the water diverted and used by Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Phoenix considerably exceeds the water used by all western agriculture combined. (And remember, ag use tends to return water to the soil. City use tends to flush it into the ocean rather more directly.)

A very good example is the Owens Valley. Old-timers have told me it used to be rich in water and lush with crops and livestock. Then Los Angeles took its water, and the Owens Valley became a desert dustbowl. (There are still a few isolated oases, where some spot doesn't drain to the Owens River.)

http://www.sacbee.com/2014/01/...

Comment: Re:Astronomy, and general poor night-time results. (Score 1) 524

by Reziac (#47532493) Attached to: Laser Eye Surgery, Revisited 10 Years Later

That's a killer for me as well. I'm not a telescope-stargazer, but I do appreciate the night sky... and right now I see in the dark like a vampire (and even better if corrected to 20-20 -- I'm about 20-45 and 20-80, uncorrected). Having halos and spikes would drive me nuts.

I've half-thought about it for my worse eye, but mild myopia has its advantages as well -- even at 59, my worse eye still doesn't need reading glasses except for very small print (2 point or smaller).

Comment: Re:Someone has an agenda to push (Score 1) 270

Carbon taxes do not pay the external costs of carbon emissions. Full stop.

But that was never the intent of a carbon tax, was it? It's not a reparations program.

The purpose of a carbon tax is to make carbon emitting-technologies more expensive, so that the market will be encouraged to find alternatives that emit less carbon.

Without that, it's difficult for alternative technologies to get a foothold in the market, as they are forced to compete with carbon-based technologies that are allowed to pollute "for free", thus neutralizing (from a monetary perspective) the advantage of the non-polluting technologies.

Comment: Re:Price of using scientists as political pawns (Score 5, Insightful) 270

How many people does solyndra employ today? Where are the green jobs?

Here they are. The solar industry of the USA now employs more people than the coal industry of the USA.

Funny how you weren't aware of that fact, isn't it? It's almost as if your media sources chose not to mention it, because it doesn't fit their narrative.

This is the recurring problem with the left. They promise everyone a world of rainbows and unicorn cheeseburgers. But when push comes to shove... you fail. You don't deliver.

Or, they succeed, but the right-wing media bubble pretends not not notice. Cherry-picking reality might help them keep their market share in the short run, but as time goes on more and more people will realize they're full of shit.

Comment: Re:Customer service? (Score 1) 797

yeah, we're robots with no brains. we follow orders. don't question stupid rules and never use human judgement. we are humans, but we should be thought of as cattle.

Hold on...What you're saying suggests to me you may not understand how the process works. Whether or not the father of this family knew it, he was trying to game the system. Sure, he had frequent flyer privileges, but his kids did not. He could have paid extra for them to be up there with him, but he didn't. That's the deal with Southwest. If he doesn't like it, he can fly another airline. Maybe he didn't understand the policy, but the gate agent explained it to him. Here's the thing - he's a frequent flyer. He probably should have known better. Maybe other gate agents have made an exception for him, but they weren't required to. He wasn't entitled to that exception. On other airlines, it would be akin to you buying a first class ticket and two coach tickets and demanding that your coach companions get first class seats...probably bumping two other passengers who paid for those first class seats.

Who should the burden of thinking be shifted to, the airline employees or the traveler? What if you and your companion didn't get to sit together or had to check your bags because this guy's kids cut in line without paying for the privilege (even though you may have)?

I'm not saying that the gate agent acted correctly throughout the course of this (and I don't know if she didn't). In this situation, however, I'm inclined to give her more of the benefit of the doubt than this passenger, given the details of the story.

Never try to teach a pig to sing. It wastes your time and annoys the pig. -- Lazarus Long, "Time Enough for Love"

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