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Comment Re:"This finding goes against what we thought" (Score 4, Interesting) 105

That's exactly how science is supposed to work.

The master said it best:

The young specialist in English Lit, having quoted me, went on to lecture me severely on the fact that in every century people have thought they understood the universe at last, and in every century they were proved to be wrong. It follows that the one thing we can say about our modern "knowledge" is that it is wrong.

My answer to him was, "John, when people thought the earth was flat, they were wrong. When people thought the earth was spherical, they were wrong. But if you think that thinking the earth is spherical is just as wrong as thinking the earth is flat, then your view is wronger than both of them put together."
— Issac Asimov, The relativity of wrong

Comment Re:Don't they have something better to do? (Score 2) 201

Use this instead: [pirate bay link]

THIS, and I'll raise you that Spotify should ban their music. There are lots of other equally-or-more-talented musicians who would kill for a chance at exposure.

I'm sure Ministry of Sound would be happy getting their stuff played exclusively on ClearChannel FM and/or sold at [insert failing big-box 'electronics' store here]. Meanwhile, artists with business knowledge will be out promoting the shit out of their music and making a killing.

Comment Re: Government vs terrorists (Score 1) 395

Terrorists are not a credible threat.

FIFY, at least in America.

41,000 Americans die each year in vehicle-related accidents (source:

785,000 Americans die each year due to heart disease (source:

580,000 Americans die each year due to cancer (source:

0 (as in Zero) Americans die each year due to Terrorism - it isn't a recurring event. This year, 3 people died in Boston, due to "Terrorism". In 2001, 3-5,000 people died; in 1996, 1 person died.

Even if we had a 9/11 every month, it wouldn't even come close to Cancer or Heart Disease as a threat. you can toss your duct tape and plastic sheets. Or use them when you paint your garage.

Comment Fool me twice; can't get fooled again! (Score 1) 918

Don't worry. The wheels will eventually come off, as sustaining Pax Americana will utterly and completely drain the coffers down to where the whole thing just collapses, just as they did with every other two-bit empire in the past.

A good read on the subject is Chalmers Johnson's The Sorrows of Empire: Militarism, Secrecy, and the End of the Republic.

To the bunkers!

Comment Re:One more reason that such systems make no sense (Score 1) 308

If you have to have an admissions exam for a university, ~.

Let me distill down a Quarter of College-level Econ for you:

  1. There are a limited number of spaces in the university;
  2. There are more applicants for those spaces than the number of available spaces; therefore
  3. Some method of discriminating* between applicants is necessary.

    Of course, one (i.e., you) could claim that the simple fix is to increase the number of spaces at the university, or perhaps build more universities. Then you run into the issue of scarcity of competent professors. Would you wish to staff your university with the first bumblefnck that was able to stumble through your doors, clutching a freshly-minted Masters or PhD?

    * Discrimination, in this case, means "a method of choosing". It could be the first 500 students in the door, those whose last name starts and ends with a vowel; or those who passed some godawful test.

    Scenes I'd like to see: implement national driver's license test standards so that 70% automatically fail their first try, and boost the penalty for driving without a license. Then we'd finally have a nation of good drivers, I mean good test takers. Wait...what?

Comment Re:A proposition... (Score 5, Insightful) 148

So why were you endangering national security?

Every time you use teh interwebs, you are endangering national security.

Every time you leave the house, you are endangering national security.

Every time you stay at home, you are endangering national security.


Consider that they are tracking everyone.

Which means everyone is a suspect.

And they wouldn't be suspects if they weren't guilty.


Q. What do you call an innocent civilian?
A. A criminal who hasn't broken the law yet.

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A mathematician is a device for turning coffee into theorems. -- P. Erdos