Follow Slashdot stories on Twitter

 



Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Get HideMyAss! VPN, PC Mag's Top 10 VPNs of 2016 for 55% off for a Limited Time ×

Comment What would be nice... (Score 1) 363

... would be a robot that automatically deletes any post relating in any way to US politics. There is nothing useful to be said about it, apart from the necessity of burning it to the ground and starting over from scratch. And immense amounts of time and effort are wasted arguinbg about these non-issues that have no importance and don't affect anything in the real world.

Comment Re: muricans = idiots (Score 2) 256

The US would happily increase cooperation with Russia if only Russia would stop sabre rattling.

Actually, the USA has over 1,000 military bases abroad - many of them in Asia, as close as possible to the frontiers of Russia, China, and Iran. Not to mention its 11 (give or take) massive carrier battle groups which prowl the oceans to intimidate other nations.

Russia has, from memory, three or four small military bases outside its own borders. Apart from Syria, where it is fighting terrorism (because someone has to, and the USA isn't) they are all in friendly nations next door to Russia itself - Belarus, Armenia, etc.

When the USA sails its carrier battle groups or other naval units a few miles from Russia and China, in waters many thousands of miles away from the USA, that isn't sabre-rattling.
When the USA organizes "NATO" military exercises that involve large numbers of soldiers and weapons parading around a few miles from Russia, that isn't sabre-rattling.
When the USA places German tanks as close to St Petersburg as they were in autumn 1941, that isn't sabre-rattling.
When the USA places missile stations that could, without anyone knowing, be equipped to fire offensive nuclear missiles, within a few miles of Russia that isn't sabre-rattling. (Although it is exactly equivalent to the Soviet actions to prevent which President Kennedy precipitated the Cuban Missile Crisis).

But when the Russians or Chinese calmly announce the measures they have taken to defend themselves, or when they conduct military exercises entirely within their own borders - THAT is apparently sabre-rattling.

See http://www.globalfirepower.com.... Clue: Russia is the 5th-ranked in military spending, slightly below the UK. Its spending is less than one twelfth of the USA's.

http://www.globalresearch.ca/p...

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/...

Comment Re:This is better than an ICBM because...? (Score 1) 256

Yes, because no one in the entire world outside the USA cares about anything except American politics - and especially elections. Ironically enough, a very great deal of military history and an immense amount of death and suffering has been caused as a mere side-effect of US elections, and leaders who wanted to "look strong" before them.

Comment Re:This is better than an ICBM because...? (Score 1) 256

Edited version of my last reply:

"The Moon Is A Harsh Mistress", a science fiction novel by Robert A Heinlein published over 50 years ago. Heinlein was a qualified engineer and a retired US Navy officer (who once commanded a gun turret on the battleship USS Oklahoma, and docked USS Lexington when she was the largest warship in the world). He knew what he was talking about. In the novel, Lunar colonists rebel against an oppressive Terran "Authority", in a fairly obvious rehash of the American Revolution. Instead of bombs, they merely launch loads of rocks into ballistic trajectories calculated to hit targets on Earth (such as Cheyenne Mountain, Colorado). The effect is similar to a nuclear explosion.

Comment Re:This is better than an ICBM because...? (Score 1) 256

"The Moon Is A Harsh Mistress", a science fiction novel by Robert A Heinlein published over 50 years ago. Heinlein was a qualified engineer and a retired US Navy officer (who once commanded a gun turret on the battleship USS Oklahoma, and docked USS Lexington when she was the largest warship in the world). He knew what he was talking about. In the novel, Lunar colonists rebel against an oppressive Terran "Authority", ina fairly obvious rehash of the American Revolution. Instead of bombs, they merely launch loads of rocks into ballistic trajectories calculated to hit targets on Earth (such as Cheyenne Mountain, Colorado). The effect is similar to a nuclear explosition.

Comment And this is why... (Score 2) 465

... it's unwise to entrust anything of value to "the cloud". Put your work and your intellectual property on Google - and it may vanish, leaving you with nothing except the dusty prospect of sueing one of the world's biggest and most powerful corporations. Buy books from Amazon in Kindle format, and one day they may simply vanish too - as, with supreme irony, copies of "1984" and "Animal Farm" vanished in 2009. http://www.theregister.co.uk/2...

Keep what is important to you under your own eye and your own control, and of course back it up judiciously and perhaps store copies in a few other places. But blithely assuming that your intellectual property is safe on computers owned and controlled by people whom you do not know, and who have fundamentally no obligation to you, is risky.

If you enjoy thrillers and would appreciate a dramatic fictional presentation of these ideas, try Michael Connelly's novel "The Scarecrow". https://www.amazon.co.uk/Scare... You will probably never feel the same about "the cloud" again.

Comment Re:Wrong, evil and going to happen (Score 2) 101

TTIP is seen in Europe as purely an economic issue.

Not by me it isn't - and not by many others who voted for UKIP and Brexit. Just like the EU, TTIP is mainly designed to take effective power away from national governments - which, however imperfectly, represent and are answerable to their citizens - and give it to faceless and utterly unanswerable individuals and corporations.

As far as I am concerned, TTIP is purely a political issue. And it's as important as Magna Carta, Habeas Corpus, trial by jury, or representative democracy - because it threatens to undermine or demolish all of them.

Comment Re:"Ratings" subject to change (Score 1) 208

While your objections are obviously correct, I think you are flogging a dead horse. Andrea Leadsom's suggestion is so utterly brain-dead that, even in the world of British politics, it is a non-starter. As soon as Andrea got back to her Ministry (oh wait, I forgot she hasn't got one) Sir Humphrey would take her aside and explain the facts of life as gently as possible. Maybe a few G&Ts would help her to feel better.

Comment Don't forget books! And newspapers... And... (Score 5, Insightful) 208

If rating Web sites is a good idea, then why not rate books too? This is a long overdue initiative, which would put the UK right up at the top of the Fahrenheit 451 Censorship League. Of course there are some practical drawbacks, such as the unlikelihood that any government flunkey or private contractor would be willing to read the whole of any book. But it would be very amusing (not to say revealing) to see a list of books that Andrea Leadsom would consider dangerous.

Comment Re:Standard Operating Practice (Score 1) 634

Given that the UK has been giving a net £8.5 billion to the EU every year (£18 billion gross; £13 billion including the rebate; less about £4.5 billion that the EU gives back), and that a 200 bed hospital can be built for about £100 million... I make that 85 hospital equivalents per year.

Now of course the UK government is not going to spend the whole £8.5 billion building new hospitals. (Although it would be hugely more cost-effective than the ghastly Private Finance Initiative whereby private companies are allowed to build the hospitals, schools, etc. and then rent them to the government for decades, raking in huge profits at the public expense). There are many other things to spend money on - for example, the £100 million a year that the EU has been giving to Cambridge University should probably be continued. They might even let the taxpayers keep some of the "dividend" in lower taxes. (Just kidding!)

The NHS as a whole costs well over £100 billion a year, but £8.5 billion is a worthwhile fraction of that. I would rather have it than not have it.

Comment Re:Standard Operating Practice (Score 1) 634

The £13.7 billion figure comes from the disproven £350m/day figure (£350m * 365 = £12.8b) that Nigel Farage has described as "a mistake" because it's from *before* the rebate and subsidies; once you take into account the rebate and subsidies it's actually about half that.

Well, I was wrong - the total payment before the rebate is about £18 billion a year; after the rebate it is £13 billion. Taking account of the £4 billion plus the EU pays back, the net is actually about £8.5 billion.

https://fullfact.org/europe/ou...

Slashdot Top Deals

Decaffeinated coffee? Just Say No.

Working...