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Comment Simular to the Sturgis motorcycle rally (Score 1) 273

I'm not hating on Burning Man. I think it is a great event that I think has just grown to big. As a "biker" I have attended the rally in Sturgis, SD every few years from 1984 up until recently. Back in the "old days" it was attended by people that actually rode their bikes to the rally. The rally was relatively small. Camping was usually just a spot in a farmers field where you could park your bike, and pitch a tent or whatnot. In town it was simple vendors with whatever they had, spread out on folding tables, sometimes just on a blanket on the sidewalk. The most common ticket violation was for public drunkenness. There wasn't any organized events other then the races and hill climbs. But at some point, being a Harley rider became the thing to be. People started showing up with their bikes on trailers, driving greyhound size RV's. Vendors in town became chain stores. "Venues" started up with tightly managed events, live bands, etc. People no longer went on rides with the original club (Jackpine Gypsies in case you were wondering), or even knew what the event was about. Most tickets were for public nudity. But the fad peaked and attendance is dropping off. I really hope that it goes back to a gathering of real riders, and not tourists that want to be cool. I see the same thing with Burning Man. Once the fad passes, it will go back to being an event that is attended by people that are there for what it is about, instead of people going to the cool event that they can brag to their friends about. I just hope it can survive until that time. Just my 2cents.

Comment The moon? (Score 1) 453

Shouldn't we return to the moon in a significant way first? Maybe a harsher environment but would be a good way to test the tech. And since it is alot closer, resources could be sent if needed. It is like taking your children camping the first time. Best to spend a night in a tent in the back yard before going out to the wilderness.

Comment My experience (Score 1) 878

Back in the 80's I was attending a university and programming in Fortran (and regularly smoking pot). Unfortunately I did something stupid that resulted in me spending 3 weeks as the guest of the government (ie: I spend 3 weeks in jail) So this particular jail (or at least the section that I was in) had a chess board. And there were a number of good players. I had learned to play chess as a kid, but I never got particularly good. I had been smoking right up to day I went to court so when I landed in cells I was in what I felt was my usual working mental condition. After a few days I started playing chess (since there wasn't much else to do) and I played badly. However I noticed as the days passed by I was getting better. After 2 weeks I really was noticing that my game had improved dramatically and I was feeling like my thinking was much clearer. By the end of my time I was the top player in the place. Once I got out I of course went back to smoking but almost immediately I felt my thinking becoming muddied. I started looking around and I could see that many people that were regular smokers had little or no ambition and were content to simply drift along in life. I have not smoked in many years and for me it was the right thing to do. The other thing that is problematic is how much crime has become centered around the production and distribution of pot. Just like the days of prohibition, easy money has created gangs that only exist because of the easy money generated by the drug trade. Legalizing and controlling the production and distribution of drugs by the government (as is done with alcohol since the end of prohibition) is a way to remove the funding that gangs depend on. The increase in revenue generated by the taxation of pot sales combined with the savings from no longer having to lock up offenders would make a huge difference to how policing would be done. I see that today's social problems centered on pot use has many parallels with the prohibition era. And like that era, the solution was to legitimize and regulate.

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