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Comment Drinking Water Isn't So Easy As You Think (Score 3, Interesting) 247

When I was a kid I did Unicef collection every Haloween. We got an orange cardboard coin box at school, and collected donations to it along with our trick-or-treat. Unicef used these funds to build water wells for people in Africa who had only access to contaminated surface water.

A decade or two later, we found that many of these wells accessed aquifers that were contaminated by arsenic. And that thus we kids had funded the wholesale poisoning of people in Africa, and that a lot of them had arsenic-induced cancers that were killing them.

OK, we would not make that mistake again, and today we have access to better water testing. But it caused me to lose my faith that we really do know how to help poor people in the third world, no matter how well-intentioned we are.

And we had better not go around curing disease withoput also promoting birth control. Despite what the churches say, and the local dislikes and prejudices. Or we'll just be condemning more people to starve.

Comment Re:The Limbaugh Doctrine (Score 1) 280

Well why should the President know about most of this? If some guy in shipping fucks up your order, are you shocked when the CEO of the company isn't personally aware of the status of your package?

Splendid. So, when "some guy in shipping fucked up", and told that president that Iraq has obtained weapons of mass destructions; and the president went ahead and made some decisions based on that information which later turned out to be wrong -- when that happened, I'm sure you were also defending the president, because he was only acting on the information he received from his subordinates.

Comment Re:The Limbaugh Doctrine (Score 1) 280

That's what his Secretaries of State are for.

I'm genuinely curious: when the president's cabinet, which includes the Sec Of State, and other Cabinet members, informed the president that Iraq has obtained weapons of mass destruction; and the president acted on that information which later turned out to be wrong -- when that happened, were you also defending the president because he was merely acting on the information that he god from his subordinates, and "that's what his secretaries of state are for?

Hhhhhhhhhhhhhhmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm???

Comment The Limbaugh Doctrine (Score 4, Interesting) 280

...the President told German Chancellor Merkel that he would have stopped the tap on her phone had he known about it.

A textbook example of the Limbaugh Doctrine. For those of you in Rio Linda, CA: the Limbaugh Doctrine states the president had absolutely no idea that something bad was going on, he's just as shocked as everyone else, at the turn of events, but he's going to put a stop to it.

The president had absolutely no clue how big of the train wreck the healthcare.gov web site was going to be, until the day of the launch. As far he knew, everything was going just fine, and he was just as shocked as everyone else, how big of a botch it turned out to be.

The president had no idea that the IRS was harassing his political opponents. He read about it in the papers, when the story broke.

The president did not know that our troops on the ground in Libya called for help several times, when the barbarians attacked the Benghazian embassy, but someone in the military chain of command told them to stand down, and that no help was forthcoming. The president found that out only after the fact.

The president did not know that the Dept. Of Justice was sending illegal firearms to Mexican drug gangs. He was shocked, just shocked, to find out about it, in the papers.

Etc... etc... The president never has any idea what's going on in his administration. Who's running the government anyway?

Comment Re:Er, wait, what? (Score 5, Insightful) 140

Well, nuclear reactions that we can turn off like laser-initiated fusion are a lot nicer than the alternatives. The inside of your car engine is a raging inferno shot with electric sparks and compressed with inexorable steel cylinders. That doesn't keep you from going on a nice drive with your sweetie.

Comment IOMMU (Score 4, Informative) 125

Yes, when I saw this I thought that this was a reason to make motherboard IOMMUs a security feature. Also, the DMA destination memory pages should not have the executable bit turned on. Recent generations of Intel/AMD CPUs have provided the ability to turn that bit off.

Comment Symbolism over substance (Score 2, Insightful) 378

Although my phone is unlocked, if it weren't, and it got unlocked, my choice of a wireless carrier will increase by exactly one carrier. As Benny Hill would've said: biiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiig ...deal.

I'm just curious if anyone in the administration actually knows that US wireless companies use different, incompatible technologies. A phone that works on one carrier would, at most, have a chance of working on only one other carrier, and would, most likely, lack the ability to take advantage of the additional carrier's full spectrum, resulting in degraded service.

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