Please create an account to participate in the Slashdot moderation system


Forgot your password?
DEAL: For $25 - Add A Second Phone Number To Your Smartphone for life! Use promo code SLASHDOT25. Also, Slashdot's Facebook page has a chat bot now. Message it for stories and more. Check out the new SourceForge HTML5 internet speed test! ×

Comment Re:Some privacy is more equal than other (Score 1) 287

Obviously, privacy of police officers is less equal than that of Planned Parenthood officials.

And you have a problem with that why? Police officers on duty don't have the same expectation of privacy that a private non profit and its officials have.

Are PP's employees "entirely different" from policemen?

What law enforcement powers do PP employees have again?

receiving even a little bit of tax money changes everything.

So PP employees should be able to go out and write tickets for speeding and stuff because they get a little tax money?

I notice you don't mention any applicable law. If we just go off of the vague assertion that it "changes everything" rather than a concrete law, then there are plenty of negative ways we could interpret that which make matters worse.

From what I'm reading here, this case doesn't look good for the activists. They committed fraud, they covertly videoed someone (which incidentally may be illegal to do even when the target is a police officer), and libeled Planned Parenthood afterward. The first two are felonies. The last a civil tort.

Comment Re:"Green" technologies aren't sufficient. (Score 1) 142

Or we could, you know, build clean garbage incineration units like they have in Europe which are actually net producers of energy.

Coal burning is actually a net producer of energy too. And if burning trash "cleanly" is so awesome as a power source, then why not dig up some of our monstrous trash heaps and burn those? Cleanly, of course.

BRB I need to throw some batteries away. /s

Comment Re:Can't blame NASA (Score 1) 166

Did NASA let this happen, or did Congress force it on NASA?

I believe both are true. A key point IMHO was in the wake of the massive downsizing from the Saturn V. NASA could no longer maintain the huge infrastructure of the Saturn period in the mid 70s. But rather than resize their ambitions for the budget they were getting, they overbuilt launch infrastructure (the Space Shuttle) in a gamble to get more funding for actual space exploration and development down the road. The Challenger accident ended that gamble.

At that point in 1986, the Shuttle had failed as a tool to gain more funding and enable more space activities. But they continued it for another quarter century, finally ending the program in 2010. We've since 1986 have had a vastly overpriced space station, at least two Shuttle predecessors, and two Saturn V-scale rockets developed without a point by NASA.

If NASA wanted a coherent, productive space strategy, they had numerous times where they could have changed their ways to get that, even in the face of congressional meddling. It has long been more important to lock in funding than it is to actually do anything in space.

Comment Re:Can't blame NASA (Score 1) 166

Agreed. This report smells like sensationalized bullshit that makes light of what things really cost. The cost to essentially re-tool after decades out of the business of anything beyond low-earth orbit space travel has to be paid, and since NASA has to carry out the mission, they're the ones who first have to have everything in place. Measuring this against what contractors get is a head-fake; contractors should be specialists paid just for the piece of the puzzle required from them, so they should get paid less and later, after NASA has figured out to an excruciating degree of certainty what they need and how to get it done right so that contractors don't wind up making something useless.

Unless they had private industry do it. Then they wouldn't need to do all this stuff. It's worth noting that NASA actually did a study where they priced out how much a NASA contract for SpaceX's development of the Falcon 9 would cost. It turned out to be an order of magnitude greater than what SpaceX actually spent on development.

Besides, NASA is not for-profit like the private sector. Money doesn't disappear down a profit hole, CEO bonuses or golden parachutes.

Actually a lot of money does disappear exactly that way since NASA depends on private industry to actually build anything.

Unless there are examples of specific misappropriation

Like the existence of the Space Launch System? No reason for it aside from cash flow to the appropriate congressional districts. It has some of the most terrible economics since Titan III with a very low launch frequency and no compelling need for the capabilities it provides.

except only for pork mandated by Congress, because a congressman wants something sweet in his state or district. In THAT case, don't blame NASA, blame the Congressman (and the people who voted for him).

It's NASA's job to do NASA's job. They let this political rent seeking get way out of hand over the decades.

Comment Re:Can't blame NASA (Score 1) 166

Yep. Turns out NASA doesn't get to say "oops" as often as SpaceX does, which makes things more expensive.

NASA does a lot of stuff which makes things more expensive. In addition to their skewed risk perception, they also reuse the Space Shuttle lineage despite no compelling reason to do so (particularly, the solid rocket motors which generate a variety of costs and risks), employ cost plus contracts (which should be the exclusive realm of gouging law firms), and make some of the worst economic decisions in the federal government.

Comment Re:what's the next plan? (Score 1) 269

Half of Bangladesh being under water is a "first world cause"?

It's not that hard to move a hundred million people. The US, for example, does it every few years.

If anybody will survive catastrophic climate change it will be the "first world".

Come up with evidence first for this alleged "catastrophic" nature. You clearly haven't been reading actual research.

Plus, most of the "first world" is in a temperate climate zone which means it will be warmer, but livable, unlike say the tropics in such a scenario.

Most of the warming won't be in the tropics. And once again, if that really is a problem at some point in the distant future, then move the people. It's not that hard a problem.

Comment what's the next plan? (Score 2) 269

The overarching goal is simple: globally, we must halve carbon dioxide emissions every decade.

And if we don't do that, say because developing world countries have better things to do than turn their economies upside down for First World causes? What's plan B? Sooner or later we're going to have to deal with the real world strategy of adaptation not the imaginary ones of radical greenhouse gases emission reduction.

Slashdot Top Deals

"I may be synthetic, but I'm not stupid" -- the artificial person, from _Aliens_