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Comment encouragement (Score 1) 306

My dad was laid of after many years as a developer/technical writer/manager at the same company when he was in his early 60s. After roughly a 6-month job search, he found a great position as an "automation engineer" (he basically wanders around looking at people's processes and then automates the boring parts for them). So hang in there, it can be done. If you just start from the assumption that you have to prove to them you've gotten wiser and smarter with age rather than getting "set in your ways", that could probably help.

Comment Decimal time (Score 1) 475

I don't see why it matters if I get up at 6 or at 7. I know a lot of people who hate it so much they constantly talk about "real time" vs. "government time", but I see it as all "government time". They're just labels so we can manage to meet up with people. The thing I really care about is, why can't we switch to a decimal time system? That would be a lot more functional.

Comment R. Buckminster Fuller approves! (Score 1) 383

The estate's claim that the use of the name infringes on their rights (which is a patently ridiculous claim, in my view) is apparently quite consistent with R. Buckminster Fuller's views --- supposedly he would claim credit to his student's work but saw himself as simply protecting his own intellectual property by so doing.

Comment Re:IQ tests are getting dumbed down... (Score 1) 421

Well, seeing as how Idiocracy is fiction, I really don't see that as good evidence of anything. And even if IQ tests are really being dumbed down now --- which I doubt --- I doubt it was occurring already in 1951, when the short story on which Idiocracy was based was written.

Comment Re:Media Researcher? (Score 1) 288

I agree with your question, but even if she researched robotics, it wouldn't mean anything. I can't tell you how many grandiose papers exactly like this I have read from early-career social roboticists (many of whom couldn't qualify as roboticists without qualifying the term, granted) seeking tenure. And then someone writes an article suggesting it somehow has policy implications? Next, please.

Comment Re:Relative Poverty Value? (Score 1) 696

You make a good point if you look at that question on the surface, but I'd argue that the question can't really be answered unless we first ask, "What does it mean to eradicate poverty?" Studies have shown that people feel poor if they are poorer than the people around them. That's why a lot of people feel poor in our society even if they are living in luxury compared to someone on the other side of the globe, or even just on the other side of town. It seems to me like we are trying to increase standards of living consumeristically, and I think that's doomed to failure, plus it often makes me question "What's the point?" Because once we eradicate poverty at one level, there'll be another level to eradicate it on, even if everyone's actually living in comparative luxury. Now, I'm not arguing that poor people are living in luxury, only that I don't see the current methods being successful because even if they were, they would still feel comparatively poor and thus be subjected to the negative health outcomes associated with being under stress due to lack of control, uncertainty, etc.

What if we tried a different tack and, in addition to forms of support like rent assistance, had more widespread programs that would help people, say, develop community gardens and thus be producers (albeit only for themselves and perhaps their communities, unless they got really industrious), thereby raising their quality of living by 1) increasing their access to quality food and 2) helping them to develop a feeling of pride in what they had produced for themselves and their communities? And if people in a community produced different things, they could have engage in bartering and raise their standards of living still higher. Well, we can't do this because it wouldn't be "efficient" --- and of course because it would threaten the businesses at the top.

Comment Re:1960s vs 2010s (Score 1) 696

"More women with more buying power means more demand and more work to fill that demand. Adding more workers should make everyone wealthier. If it doesn't that means there is something terribly wrong with the economy."

Ding ding ding --- we have a winner! I continually hear people claiming that if everyone made a living wage --- so not even if we raised minimum wage by government, but if every worker got together and said, 'hey, let's all refuse to work for wages we can't live on so they have to pay us enough to live on' --- that the economy would break down completely. Whether or not that's true, if a significant proportion of economic participants believe that the economy would literally break down if everyone received a fair exchange for the valuable work they do, whether that's programming software or emptying garbage cans or cleaning hotel rooms, that says to me that there is something terribly wrong with the economy. And the number of people who vote Republican suggests to me that this is not just anecdotal among the people I know, but that a significant proportion of regular joes have been tricked into believing this.

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