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Comment Re:Fighting nebulous "hate speech" will kill them (Score 1) 164

What are you talking about? Right now, it appears that close to half the nation at least sympathizes with the alt-right: they just elected the President. I don't think it's completely unreasonable to assume that the Americans on Facebook roughly represent America's population overall, in fact I think the alt-right is probably over-represented on FB because younger people (under 30, and esp. under 20) use the platform a lot less than older people.

Also, in my own personal experience with some, um, family members, alt-right groups are very strong and numerous on Facebook from what I've seen. Personally, I think Facebook will be shooting itself in the foot if they kick out all the alt-right groups. They have a platform that caters mostly to old people (Gen-X and up), and a huge portion of that population is right-wing, and has now moved into alt-right territory (AFAICT, the traditional right-wing is now mostly gone, and conservative people have shifted their views to align with alt-right sources like infowars). So while I can understand why Zuck isn't real happy with his customer base, but those are the people keeping Facebook alive and bringing in advertising dollars.

Comment Re:Why not just use Splenda? (Score 1) 325

How about artificial sweeteners (stevia isn't artificial to my knowledge, it comes from some plant in South America I think)? Saccharin, aspartame, sucralose?

I think I might have that gene too; cilantro seems to taste a little soapy, and I really have stevia. I like broccoli though, but only steamed like in Chinese food.

Comment Re:Define "fit for business" (Score 1) 117

Ok, that makes sense, but I'm not proposing that MS push these shenanigans any time too soon. What if they wait until everyone's finally moved to Win10 Enterprise, perhaps in 3-5 years, and *then* they start tightening the screws on their corporate customers, mis-feature by mis-feature? Remember the old tale about the frog in boiling water.

Comment Re:or how about less sugar anyways? (Score 1) 325

I don't see how that would prevent what Germany does. If a State wanted to withhold tithes from people's paychecks in that State, the 1A doesn't prevent it, as long as the government doesn't favor any one religion. As long as any religion could apply for this service, it should be legal. The problem is that it'd probably be an administrative nightmare. As I understand it, over in Germany, most Christians still fall into a handful of denominations, which are all probably organized at the national level (i.e., the Catholics have organizations at the diocesan levels, and probably one country-wide level above those, which reports to the Vatican; the Lutherans have one organization, the Anglicans too, etc.). Over here in the US, things aren't that simple. While the Catholics are of course well-organized, the other mainstream Protestant denomations are less so: there's mainstream groups for the Epsicopals, Lutherans, etc., but all these also have renegade divisions where some chuches at some point rebelled against the heirarchy and split off into their own sect. The Lutherans, for instance, have the Wisconin and Missouri Synods which are ultra-conservative, unlike the regular sect. The Presbyterians have PC-USA which most churches are part of, but a bunch are either independent or part of some other ultra-conservative group (lately in response to the Presbyterians' acceptance of homosexuals and of homosexual preachers even). There's a zillion different Baptist groups out there dating from the 1800s. And these days half the Protestants are Evangelicals, and frequently part of some Prosperity Gospel megachurch, which is totally independent. All in all, there's probably tens if not hundreds of thousands of "organizations" around the nation, just for Christianity, though most of these are independent churches both large and small (some of them in peoples' basements even). So keeping track of all these entities and giving them access to the government-tithe-withholding system would end up costing an absolute fortune. In Germany, they probably don't have this problem because 1) I'm pretty sure they don't have remotely as many independent churches and 2) they don't have our 1A, so they can probably safely ignore smaller religious organizations and just do this for large, established ones.

Honestly, I'm not sure why Germany still does this at all. Much of their population isn't religious any more, and if people want to give money to a church, they can do it themselves without the government's help. It's probably some silly holdover from previous generations when churches were a stronger part of civic life, but for an advanced and secular western nation, it's really an embarrassment IMO.

Comment Re:Thoughtcrime (Score 1) 410

That is not the same thing as consuming child sex abuse material, which is based on harm to other people.

No, it's not.

Cartoons and stick figures do not cause harm to actual children, yet these are just as illegal as full-fledged photographic CP in many jurisdictions. That's the problem with these stupid laws. Someone who likes to look at kiddie anime has issues, I'll agree, but they don't need to be locked up, as they haven't harmed any children or anyone at all. If you take that route, then we need to start locking people up for all kinds of moral "crimes" such as adultery, fornication, looking at (adult) porn, criticizing the Dear Leader, etc. under the theory that they're somehow harming society.

And alcoholics and drug addicts, it can be argued, are hurting their families and society too, probably more than someone looking at some pics at home. Drug/alcohol addiction causes a real loss of productivity at work, impaired driving-related accidents, etc.

Just like alcohol and drugs, it's basically impossible to eliminate the demand for CP; there's simply something miswired in the heads of people who like that. The answer is therapy, not criminal prohibition of everything that resembles it and locking them up. (Note that I'm *not* arguing for legalization of actual CP that involves real humans.)

And to extend this to the future: we can already create nearly photo-realistic movies entirely digitally, with no humans at all. There was a Final Fantasy movie over 10 years ago that was pretty impressive for the time, and it's only gotten better since then. Now amateurs are making very impressive short videos on their home computers. Before too long, it won't be hard to make movie scenes that look entirely real, depicting humans who don't actually exist, and someone's going to use that technology to make CP. Should that be illegal, when it can be *proven* that no humans were involved in the production? Something to think about. Because if that's illegal, under the theory that people interested in this stuff will inevitably want the "real thing" at some point, then basically you've invented a "thought crime" and created a witch hunt.

Comment Re:Nestle didn't discover anything. (Score 1) 325

Sea salt vs. table salt isn't just a difference in crystal size (sea salt can be milled down to a finer size easily). Sea salt has a different chemical makeup than table salt: that's why it tastes so different. Table salt is almost pure sodium chloride, plus some anti-caking agents and iodine, and has all the impurities refined out. Sea salt has much higher concentrations of trace minerals, namely calcium, magnesium, potassium, and iron. These things are still small in concentration in sea salt (hence the term "trace amounts"), but it's enough to make the salt taste noticeably different.

Comment Re:A real "breakthrough" (Score 1) 325

There's some inaccuracies in your post.

First, the higher-priced chocolate bars really aren't that hard to find. You really should be able to find the higher-priced US-made chocolate bars at any Walmart or Target, even in "the heartland". Target carries Lindt, for instance. It's not going to be in the checkout aisle, though.

Another good place to get chocolate (both US and especially European) is "Cost Plus World Market". These stores are pretty common in suburban areas, and have a lot of specialty foreign foods plus some fancy American-made stuff that's hard to find in supermarkets.

Finally, Whole Foods' alternate name is "Whole Paycheck".

And how is white chocolate "criminal fraud"? If you get really high-quality white chocolate, it's fantastic.

Comment Re:How do we know this is true? (Score 1) 325

"Post-factual world"? WTF are you smoking?

Most politicians are guilty of being big liars. Trump just made it more comical and used their tricks against them. It should be no surprise that politicians are good at lying: almost all of them are lawyers. The entire law profession is nothing but professional lying.

Finally, "applying the same technique to marketing"? WTF do think marketing is??? Marketing is just a euphemism for lying! It's always been that way!

How old are you anyway? You're acting like Trump invented lying!

Comment Re:or how about less sugar anyways? (Score 1) 325

It's probably like Germany. There (as I understand it), the government takes tithes out of your paycheck to give to the church. To do this, you have to declare a church affiliation. So if you're dumb enough to declare to the government that you're a Lutheran or whatever, they'll take 10% of your pay and give it to that denomination. If you say that you're unaffiliated/non-religious, you keep all your money (minus the other taxes of course).

It wouldn't work in the US because there's a strong aversion here to mixing the government with religion that way. (The religious want their churches to have power over the government, and religious people in power in the government, not the other way around which is how it appears with the government having control over church finances by forcibly taking tithes.)

Comment Re:Why not just use Splenda? (Score 1) 325

No. What you're missing is that different people taste these things differently.

As an example, what do you think of cilantro? Do you like it, or does it taste like soap to you? There's a genetic difference in people who think it tastes like soap, and those people are a significant minority of the population, not just a few mutants. It's very likely the same thing is going on with these artificial sweeteners.

Comment Re:Why not just use Splenda? (Score 2) 325

What's insane about that? Fructose is a poison. Of course, sucrose has fructose in it (after it's broken down by sucrase enzyme in your body), but that's better than pure fructose. Fructose is like alcohol: it has to be processed by your liver. It's OK in fruits because the total amount of it isn't that much (whole fruits are mostly fiber), but in large, concentrated amounts it's not good for you. And of course, sucrose isn't "healthy" either, but it's better than pure fructose.

Comment Re:Why not just use Splenda? (Score 2) 325

AFAICT, different people react to different sweeteners differently. Some people think saccharin tastes just fine, for instance, while others think it tastes like shit. Stevia seems to be especially controversial; to me it tastes really nasty.

It's not just sweeteners: some people like the taste of cilantro, but other people think it tastes like soap. This is actually controlled by a gene, which has been identified IIRC.

I'm like you: I think all the artificial sweeteners taste terrible. However, I also think HFCS tastes terrible. Corn syrup (and its close relative HFCS) isn't just pure glucose and fructose; it still retains molecules from its corn source which affects its flavor. There's a reason that Coca-Cola made south of the border with real sugar has a certain popularity here: it really does taste different than the HFCS version. There's even a conspiracy theory that the whole "New Coke" thing in the 80s was a plot to switch the public from sugar to HFCS, since the "old Coke" was made with sugar, and then the "Coke Classic" was made with HFCS: by the time Coke Classic finally came out, everyone had forgotten what the old Coke tasted like and was just happy to have something similar-tasting back.

Comment Re:Define "fit for business" (Score 1) 117

I'm not underestimating how damaging those things are, I'm maybe overestimating how willing these organizations are to put up with these shenanigans so they don't have to switch away from Windows. As you say, a lot of stuff is in "the cloud" or has a web-based interface these days, but a lot still doesn't, plus MS Office seems to be irreplaceable to just about every business and it only runs on Windows. Plus in so many companies, their IT departments seem to have been all-MS (even for applications that don't really need it) for ages, to the point where it seems like those IT departments are branches of an MS cult. I just have a very hard time seeing any significant number of companies actually switching away from Windows if MS steadily made the Enterprise version more and more business-unfriendly by taking away the flexibility and features you speak of.

Comment Re:Define "fit for business" (Score 1) 117

They wouldn't need to build their own apps necessarily, just put a lot of pressure on their ISV vendors to make versions of those apps which run on the OS of their choice. ISVs made Windows versions of their apps ages ago when their customers pressured them to because they wanted to move to Windows from whatever they were using before (usually UNIX); this is no different. So the question really is: what advantage does a different OS give them that would be worth the expensive and effort of getting ISVs to make new versions, and of getting your IT department to switch? Well, we can go back in time and ask the very same question of companies in the 1990s, when they all switched to Windows. If they did it then, why is it so hard to imagine them doing it again? Am I the only one here who remembers a time before Windows?

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