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Comment Re:California (Score 1) 660

Well, we DID have Tom McClintock (now a Congressman) run for governor. State Assembly and State Senate do fall victim to the gerrymandering though, and most of them are an embarrassment to the state. This time around, we'll hopefully have Steve Poizner as a candidate on the main ticket for Governor, and we finally have a decent option for US Senator with Chuck DeVore. So, this time around, a lack of options won't be an excuse. We'll see what happens though.

How To Cut In Line and Not Get Caught 256

ewenc writes "A psychology study of hundreds of people waiting for front-row access to U2 concerts points to the best ways to cut in line and not get caught. 'Super-fans' are most irked by queue-jumpers. People were equally peeved whether someone cut in front or behind, and cutters who jumped beside a friend were less likely to attract scorn."

Comment Re:Medical 'insurance' is an extended warranty (Score 1) 575

Medical expenses, even those that are the incremental dollar triggering a bankruptcy, are not the "cause" of the bankruptcy. There's always choices in medical care, and often it's a trade-off---treat, or don't treat, expensive experimental treatment, or traditional drug therapy, etc., but a choice none the less. [...] They ARE perfectly able to change jobs. They just CHOOSE not to for whatever reason.
No need for "whatever"; it's not a mystery. Specifically, as I explained, the reason is that they'd lose their health coverage if they did so. Look, choice is a fun word to throw around, but it isn't a root password. When a karate master grabs your wrist and "forces" you to the ground, technically you aren't being forced at all, because you have a choice: you can either fall to the ground, or stand there and let him break your wrist. But that isn't much of a choice, now is it?
I wouldn't say "choice" is a fun word to throw around, but in keeping with the UNIX-ish motif, i'd say it's apropos.

With regards to the karate master analogy, it's a combination of a) physics, and b) reflex that comes from the acute onset of some painful stimuli. Nothing is keeping them from calling "UNCLE."

Life's not fair, sometimes we win, sometimes we lose, and sometimes it's just time to surrender and give up. So yes, I would say it's still a choice.

Do you have data that specifically show the difference of the cost of medical insurance for a changed job versus the incremental salary increase? How do you classify a job as "better?" More family time? More money? Better health insurance? "Better" is a dangerously subjective word in this context.

If you're going to argue that none of this is a problem, because people can always choose to let their health problems go untreated instead of bankrupting themselves, all I can do is laugh, because that argument makes a mockery out of the word "choice". You can't rationally expect people not to bankrupt themselves to pay for health care, when their only alternative is not to pay for it at all.
They can go with an alternative, that may be less-expensive in the short-run, or they can be not selfish, think about their families and look at it from a cost-benefit perspective. "Hmmm, if I do this, sure i'll live an extra couple of years, but my family's screwed after that." If you read fully, I presented a couple of options with regards to treatment options, beginning with the boundaries that set the range. By no means did I say that they are the only options. They can choose to treat, just in a less-expensive fashion. Now, these lower short-run-cost options may, or may not, be as efficacious, but they are treatment.

At a certain point, one needs to get a grip on the inevitable.

A market-based approach does guarantee that you'll be able to be treated as quickly as you want to be.
Um, no. There are millions of people who want health care but can't get it. Perhaps you meant "as quickly as you are willing and able to pay for".
If you hadn't snipped the sentence immediately following for melodramatic effect, yes, you will see that that is what I meant. That's how markets tend to work.

Anyway, the long and short of it is that medical care isn't a Constitutional right, any more than gasoline, flush toilets, running water, or food are, and those are certainly basic needs as well that are neither Constitutionally addressed, nor provided to the masses by the government for no cost beyond one's tax contribution.
Of course. No one said it was a Constitutional right; that's a strawman. Most people don't subscribe to the minimalist libertarian view that the government is only there to run the courts and defend the borders: they believe that government can, and in many cases should, also be a parallel system to accomplish things that the market can't or won't accomplish on its own. If We The People believe that everyone deserves medical care, whether they can afford it or not, well, the market sure isn't going to make that happen on its own, is it?
It's not a strawman at all. I was merely illustrating that the only things to which people have a "right" are those things that are spelled out in what is the supreme law of the land. I wasn't taking a minimalistic position at all. Everything else to which people have become accustomed, including Social Security, are merely granted through the grace of those who are in office. Granted, if those are taken away, whoever is in office at the time is not likely to stay very long, but's at the grace of whoever is in power.

Perhaps a question that better illustrates the point I was trying to make is how healthcare as a basic need is any different from the other basic needs I listed.

People often just want something for nothing.
I'm sure they often do, but this isn't one of those cases. Everyone realizes that health care costs money, whether that money is funneled through private insurers or government agencies.
It is one of those cases. They want something that they don't want to buy on the market given to them. If someone chooses to pay for it through private insurance, then they are paying for it. If they rely on the government for it, it comes out of someone elses pocket, not theirs.

I'd certainly be interested in reading the studies and looking at the data through which you made a lot of your claims, so please, enlighten us.

Perhaps you could rephrase that general request into one or more requests about specific claims, so I can be sure I'm finding the right cites for you.

Glad to. For starters, what I'd be interested in seeing is your sources for your claims regarding:

* ability to pay for medical care, that includes accounting for wisdom of spending habits and financial responsibility

* leading cause of bankruptcies being medical expenses

* people who are essentially indentured servants due to medical insurance, who couldn't sacrifice other aspects or expenditures in their lives because of the incremental burden of health insurance

I'm looking forward to an interesting read.

Submission + - Community vs. Corporate Linux: The Coming Divide (

tobyj writes: " discusses the great divide that will separate corporate Linux (companies that are working with Microsoft) and community Linux (companies that haven't yet partnered with Microsoft) and their impact on Linux as a whole. Matt Hartley writes, "For Linux enthusiasts, the rules are simple and clear to interpret. But for Microsoft and its Linux partners, we will see plenty of them pointing to self-created loopholes, which will result in fierce debate, and perhaps even worse, blatant defiance. As a collective community, we'd like to think that this whole issue will just blow over, but with the massive migration of so many Windows users and companies that wish to capitalize on this migration, defiance of the GPL will happen and more so than ever before."

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