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Comment Re: Good for greece (Score 5, Insightful) 1307

Germany will return to the DM, which all the sensible people in Europe will shift their savings and investments to, at which point the "new drachma", as the euro will be called then, won't be worth the paper it's printed on.

The vast majority of German exports are to Europe, and the majority of those to the Eurozone.

If Germany had a separate currency, it would appreciate relative to the rest of Europe. That would result in German exports being effectively becoming much more expensive. Similarly, with a drop in the value of the currencies (or joint currency) of the PIIGS countries, their own exports would suddenly become much more competitive and their wages much lower (without the pain of internal deflation).

That is the whole freakin' point of floating currencies. It allows effective inflation/deflation without internal real inflation/deflation, allowing the system to respond much more fluidly and rapidly. For example, German sovereign debts would have appreciated in cost (relative to other currencies), while Greek sovereign debts would depreciated sharply (relative to other currencies).

Switching to the Euro froze that, pushing all revaluations back internally, but the Eurozone failed to implement the internal corrective mechanisms that nations use (Federalised revenue and payment systems to compensate for regional downturns.)

Essentially, Germany has been gaining a huge advantage from the Euro. It prevents them pricing themselves out of the European markets via currency appreciation, while simultaneously not having to pay for failed regions within Europe. All the advantages of Euro-Federalisation with none of the costs to Germany that true Federalised economies like the US have.

Even better, Germans can play this bullshit "holier than thou" game when the system finally collapses in on itself.

Comment Re:This isn't a question (Score 1) 623

I oppose same sex marriage because:

A) It reinforces heteronormative conventions in a way which is harmful to the broader queer/trans community, and even to the acceptance of alternative hetero lifestyles. Instead of helping us move away from insistence on (and assumption of) conventions like marriage, nuclear families, and the cookie-cutter heteronormative lifestyle, gay-marriage reinforces it. It reinforces the idea that pre-marriage relationships are judged by whether they are moving towards marriage. Marriage by whether its moving towards having a family. Career, marriage, family, church, little-league... Look at how most gays are represented on TV shows, they are always excessively heteronormal suburban couples. Their lifestyle is otherwise identical to hetero couples (probably even more vanilla that the central family), their issues are always mundane hetero issues (like trying to adopt kids, or buy a home), with only a token issue of "gaining acceptance" thrown in for flavour.

(Indeed, in my opinion, the religious nutters should be on the front-lines of supporting gay-marriage. It reinforces their narrow views on acceptable lifestyle.)

B) When legislators and institutions had to deal with the issue of gay couples without marriage, they tended to also look a multiple potential alternative forms of relationships, and across a whole array of social/legal institutions. And that helps people who aren't just simple gay couples, but who deal with the same issues in employment/taxation/pension/inheritance/custody/medical/etc. But when legislators can just say, "Okay, this subsection of non-heteros will be made honorary heteros for legal purposes", suddenly that allows them to ignore the same issues that affect other types of relationships (including couples who don't marry. "My partner and I have a lot of trouble with the way laws/regs are written" can be dismissed with "Well, you have the choice to get married. If you refused to do that, you only have yourselves to blame if it causes problems.") Gay marriage hides a lot of these bigger issues under the rug.

[Note, this includes issues that affect mundane heteros. Issues like estrangement (where your legal partner isn't the person you currently live with), single parents, serial relationships, mixed families, surrogacy rights, non-parent custody rights, etc etc etc. Gay marriage allows legislators, employers, institutions, to go back to pretending that people get married early and once, have identical family structures, and live together until one of them dies.]

C) It peels away the largest and most hetero-acceptable portion of the GLBTTI community: gay couples. Therefore vastly reduce the visibility and power of the queer community, reducing any future progress on issues that matter to non-heteros and alternative lifestyle heteros. The mundane heteros could identify with simple gay couples, with jobs and homes and otherwise identical lives to their own. That served as a "ice-breaker" to gain broad support for social reforms. Without that common element, and with gay couples encouraged to adopt more and more heteronormative lifestyles, it reduces the ability to the rest of the community to pursue social reforms and address social repression.

Comment Re:This isn't a question (Score 1) 623

Because it takes issues that are otherwise straightforward and turns them into a mess if there is no will. If you get in a car accident and end up in a coma, your wife can make medical decisions for you. If you die, she inherits everything and has custody of the kids. But if you're a polygamist who adopted, who gets the kids...Sue or Molly? Who gets the house? Which one makes the call to keep you on a feeding tube while you're in the coma?

How is that any different to the situation for a sick/comatose/senile/end-of-life parent without a living spouse, when the issue of medical power-of-attorney falls to their children, who may be any number? Or which family member (of which there can be any number) take on the children of a deceased sibling. Or any number of similar issues that real societies have dealt with.

The answer is, we develop rules and conventions to work around it. For polyamorists, if they want to avoid that kind of mess, they would need to better formalise powers of attorney, living wills, etc, than a binary couple.

Comment Re:Privacy? (Score 4, Interesting) 776

What? This was a PRIVATE employment agreement between a PRIVATE employer and a PRIVATE employee. If she doesn't like the employers terms she can find a new job. The GOVERNMENT has zero business intruding in a PRIVATE affair!

This was a demand by a Federally licensed LLC on an individual.

If the owner(s) of the LLC wants to be personally legally liable for the actions of the company, I have no problem agreeing with the sentiments in your comment. But as long as those owner(s) want special legal protection by the government, they can respect a few basic social rights.

Comment Re:Not just ineffective (EEO bullshit) (Score 2) 553

Your response is an example of Appeal to Authority

Actually, the one you're trying to reach for is Appeal to Popularity (Argumentum ad Populum) not Appeal to Authority.

However, you started by talking about "immorality", so you've already fallen victim to dogmatism (by Excluding the Middle). While likening the "Pi equals 3" law or creationism to anti-discrimination laws is an Argument by False Analogy, since Pi=3 and creationism are factually wrong, not morally, and are therefore unrelated to the argument you are trying to make.

Comment Besides, it was French. (Score 1) 106

You should give up on this notion of the "One True English."

What does this have to do with English? "Metre" is the name of the international standard unit of length. If you wish you refer to measurements in the international standard unit of length, you use the name "metre". This is regardless of the particular language or sub-language variant you are using at the time.

Comment Re:Not quite comparable (Score 5, Interesting) 215

Companies can also install them just by hiring an ordinary commercial electrician (or an industrial electrician for the fast-charge options). They don't need specific govt approval or licences, nor conduct EIS studies, nor do major construction. They can add points to light-poles in your open-air carpark, or run them along walls in a parking structure. Much less infrastructure than bowsers.

You can install an outside (unmetered) 240VAC/20A power-point for maybe $50 parts plus labour. A standard three-phase (400V/30A) box w/- EFTPOS is about $600, plus labour. A DC 30m-fast-charge station w/- EFTPOS is about $3000, plus some back-end costs for the DC. The low cost means a company can add a row of free 240V charging points just for PR, even if they don't get used much; then ramp up to faster charging and paid charging (charged charging?) once they gauge demand or the number of BEVs increases.

There's vastly less commitment required to get started. And the financial return-per-point can be vastly less for it to be worthwhile.

Comment Re:DSCOVR? (Score 1) 48


Modern NASA has a thing for retarded backronyms. This one is particularly forced. ("OVR" is "Observer"? Fuck off.) Older programs were given names for the sake of names. "Pioneer", "Voyager", "Mariner". Not MARINR (MArs Remote ImagiNg observeR).

Still, at least the damn thing is flying after being mothballed for 15 years years because of its association with Al Gore.

Comment Re:And now Elon's thinking... (Score 2) 48

you can bet the Air Force will still be involved, since the launch trajectory for equatorial orbits crosses Florida.

By the time a Brownsville/Boca-Chica launch crosses the Florida peninsula, it will above 50km and not a range-safety issue. In fact, it'll be well after first stage separation, and may even be after second stage MECO.

The USAF will routinely track it as they would any launcher, or ICBM or IRBM, launched by anyone, anywhere in the world, but that will have nothing to do with launch ops and will have no effect on SpaceX's decision to launch.

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