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Comment Re:Not sure about the recovery test (Score 1) 125

The weight of the fuel decreases as you burn it out the back of the rocket, increasing efficiency For each second of the burn. Second, did you account for the rotation of the earth underneath the rocket? Zeroing out the forward momentum does eat up most of the fuel, but you don't need a whole lot of forward velocity to fall down a parabolic arc from that height to return home. Landing requires about 60m/s of delta v at it's new mass.

Comment Re:Step 2. (Score 1) 218

Make them finance the decommissioning at build time.

Already in place. Alas, costs are much higher than expected. I have not heard of a reactor that is approaching decommissioning and has sufficient funds put away for it. I would love to hear about a counterexample.

Will the future

Comment Re:Not sure about the recovery test (Score 4, Informative) 125

The rocket (1st stage) when empty needs almost no fuel (about 4% of the total fuel at launch) to return to the launch site and land. The upgraded Falcon v1.1 has 10% more fuel at launch as well as increased cargo capacity (more efficient engines). Hitting a floating barge means you have to have good conditions at the launch site, as well as 400 miles out at sea as well. That dramatically limits your launch capability and exponentially increases your recovery costs.

Comment Re:Better leave now (Score 2) 239

I know there has to be a book about that, but it's slipped my mind.

The whole thing of "first wave" colonists who spend generations getting there, and when they do... they find that the third wave colonists have been there for a few generations already, and all the planets habitable by them and their archaic technology are already taken.

"Songs of Distant Earth" Arthor C Clarke has a set of stories like that.

Comment Re:Useful Idiot (Score 1) 396

Fox and the BBC are in no way comparable. While BBC has lost some of its teeth lately, it is still far from harmless to the government.

Also, compare how the main Russian media speak about Putin with how Fox News speaks about Obama. For a third example, note that Rush Limbaugh does not, AFAIK, live in perpetual fear that thugs will beat him to a pulp and leave him dying in a ditch somewhere. Yet that is what tends to happen when journalists don't do as they are told in Russia.

Comment Re:Useful Idiot (Score 1) 396

It was fairly obvious that Russia was far from the top of the list of places Snowden wanted to flee to. When the US is able to arrange for even presidential planes to be forced down, it is difficult to escape.

This will no doubt not be the last uncomfortable thing that he will have to do. Let us just hope that it stays at "uncomfortable".

Comment Re:No, followed by "what's a well-regulated militi (Score 1) 1633

The judge wants to gut the 2nd, not fix it. What would be a true and proper fix? IMHO, we need to clarify "well regulated militia" as "those people who are fit for military service". IMHO that means it's within the right of the states, even the Feds to determine that some people are unfit (mentally unstable, etc.) and thus deprive them of this right. If it were argued that the State was declaring people unfit for political purposes, that would wind its way through the court just like anything else. There's no escaping the need for actual judgement in a court.

Thus, I think it might be reasonable for the state to compel you to give up your gun if you buy pot for any reason (medical or otherwise). A pot-head is not fit for military service. Your guns or your drugs, not both. We want sanity at the trigger end.

So marijuana is a dis-qualifier, but you got nothing to say about beverage alcohol?


Your reasoning on pot should mean a similar choice should have to be made so that if you own a gun you can never even have one beer.

Comment Re:Dear Stevens (Score 1) 1633

Enact this, and as a former serviceman who swore an oath, I am obligated to stop you at all costs.

Your argument would
a) do nothing to reduce crime or mass killings
b) furthermore, since we have no militia, it is a de facto nullification of a primal right (and no, the National Guard is not a militia, sorry, you don't send a militia abroad to foriegn wars)
c) with the increasing breaches of American civil liberties, we need our guns now, more than ever...

You swore an oath to The Constitution. If it's enacted, it becomes part of The
Constitution to which you swore that oath.

If that oath included a "but only the version in existence right now" clause, then imagine the clash between military and the public when Prohibition was repealed.

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