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Comment Re:Cut full time down to 30-32 hours to start! (Score 1) 894

The entirety of your post is rather selfish. You admit that the average person is marching almost futilely into destitution at the end of their life. But no, let's not do anything about that, that would "ruin the progress of society". The progress enjoyed by only the tiniest sliver of society, riding on the backs of everyone else, for all of history. Who's really selfish here?

Comment Re:Cut full time down to 30-32 hours to start! (Score 1) 894

I make almost exactly the mean personal income / median household income. I still live virtually the same way I did as a poor college student, saving as much as possible as quickly as possible so that someday I will have a chance of securing the most basic bit of security: having a place I'm allowed to sit and (at least) starve to death in peace, without having to bribe someone else every month for the privilege of doing so in their space. That is to say, to own a home (outright) and stop renting. As things are currently trending (including the long-term growth trends in my income, inflating cost of living over time, etc), if I can keep up the breakneck speed I'm saving at right now, I might be able to accomplish that by my 70s, giving me a mere handful of years before I will probably die in which to "save up for retirement" (i.e. food money, etc).

Cutting full time down to 30 hours will merely reduce my income to 75%, which will reduce my rate of progress toward that goal to 25%, which will extend the date that I am free from rent and able to start saving for other retirement expenses to some time near my 200th birthday.

Merely cutting everyone's hours is only going to help those who are unemployed (and not even all of them), at the expense of those who are employed (and a proportionally greater expense for the lower-paid), at not cost to the richest of the rich who are currently siphoning up all the wealth of society. A real solution to poverty has to be at the expense of those who can afford it, not merely dragging the rest of society with barely any hope already down into the same depths of hopelessness as the worst-off of us.

Comment Re:Honest Thought: Free Speech + No Platform = ? (Score 3, Insightful) 369

The ISP level is where the no-platforming line should be drawn, so long as ISPs are government-granted monopolies. There is no barrier to choice in social media platforms or web hosts, but most people in most municipalities have one or at most two choices of ISP, so they must be required to be common carriers and not discriminate based on content.

If there comes a day when anyone can connect to any... I dunno, wireless patch network or something like that... and there's no barrier to choice in ISPs either, then the ISPs are free to no-platform you too.

Comment Re:When did "The Matrix" become a religion? (Score 1) 1042

I did bother reading the rest of this thread, and all you gave was further "how". How did it come to be that living things that are around today behave in ways that tend to increase the propagation of their genes? Those that didn't died out, leaving only these ones behind. That's a "how". And to be fair, "why" is an overloaded term, and one sense of it does mean "how", so you've technically answered one sense of the question, but clearly people are asking for an answer to the other sense of it, which you might put as "how come?" In other words, for what purpose?

Purposes are not causes. They don't explain why things are, and no amount of explaining why things are will tell you its purpose. A purpose is why something ought to be, what it's good for. To answer that, you first need to answer what is good, what ought to be, in the general (which no amount of discussion about what is or is not will accomplish, as it's a completely separate, orthogonal question); and then answer how the something in particular furthers that end (probably quite indirectly).

You could actually be interpreted as having given an answer to that question, if "My biological function..." is meant not to merely describe what you do do, but to prescribe what you ought to do. If you're saying "the good that my existence serves is propagating the existence of organisms like me", then that's an answer. One that implies that the existence of organisms like you is good (either intrinsically or at least instrumentally), and that your existence tends to propagate their existence (which is only the case if you're actually likely to procreate).

I'd argue that it's possibly not the best answer (if you mean that the existence, or propagation thereof, of organisms like you is an intrinsic good, rather than merely an instrumental one), and it's possibly a rather sad one (if the only thing you're good for is giving someone else a chance to try again next generation), but it could still technically be an answer, if you meant it in that sense.

Your doubling down on the "how is all the why there is", though, makes me doubt you did mean it in that sense.

Comment Re: Many believe that we live in a computer simula (Score 1) 1042

People stupidly vote for who they think is going to win, rather than who they actually want, like it's some kind of goddamn horse race and all that matters is "picking a winner", rather than making the winner. If it weren't for the superdelegates predetermining that Clinton was going to win, chances are Bernie would've seen a much better popular vote too.

Comment Re: Many believe that we live in a computer simula (Score 2, Insightful) 1042

Unless you live in a swing state, "protest votes" are the only way to effect any change. Voting for either major party in a non-swing state neither changes who wins the election nor sends any kind of feedback inducing any party to change. You're just voting for business as usual, whatever that should happen to be.

Voting for a third party doesn't influence who wins the election either, but it influences the statistics that the major parties use to target their platforms to capture those lost votes.

Comment Re:Just let it fold and be done with it (Score 1) 254

The cancer went malignant years ago and has already infested most of the rest of the internet.

Online used to be my respite from the idiocy of the real world, back in the days when it was mostly college professors or at least students, and nerdy little kids like I was, on the nascent public ISPs, were the worst of the noobs. Now, most of the idiots (and definitely the worst of them) that I encounter seem to be on the internet, and more and more, the things they have in common all seem to stem from 4chan "culture" and its derivatives.

It's really all just an extension of Eternal September, plus Greater Internet Fuckwad Theory. More and more, the internet is populated by the same morons who make the real world a shithole, their swarm overwhelming whatever moderating influence the indigenous population may have once had on such newcomers; and the anonymity and large audience the internet provides to them just brings out the worst in all of them.

Comment Re:Technology... (Score 1) 474

Thing is though, we're not going to work out how to build a sustainable colony on Mars on paper, then send people (or robots) there to build it sight-unseen. We'd build prototypes here on Earth first, like how we tested out the Mars rovers in Earth's deserts first. The propulsion technology to get stuff to Mars is largely a solved problem by now. What we need to solve is what to build when we get there, and how to get it built, which means developing robots to build sealed "biodomes" or whatnot in inhospitable places here on Earth first -- to test the technology to make sure it will work when we strap it to a rocket and send it to Mars -- and then, by the time we're ready to strap it to a rocket, there's not a whole lot of need to actually do that anymore, besides just "because it's there".

Which is still a perfectly fine reason in the long term, and if romanticism about people on Mars gets the technology funded and developed that's great, but one way or another we're going to be building Earth-bound versions of it first, and those "prototypes" themselves will then have already solved any practical problems that might have motivated the Mars mission.

Comment Re:Self-sustaining civilization on Mars (Score 2, Insightful) 474

The same technology it would take to build self-sustaining colonies on Mars could much more easily build self-sustaining colonies on Earth. Mars is already a desolate wasteland; if we could work out how to survive there, then we could, much more easily, work out how to survive Earth becoming a desolate wasteland, even if we couldn't stop other people from making that happen.

Until we can have self-sustaining cities at the poles, in the middle of the world's deserts, on the seafloor, etc -- all much more hospitable places than Mars -- then talking about building one on Mars is a pipe dream. And once we can do that on Earth, that's much of the existential risk mitigated right there; nuclear winter, climate change, meteor impact, meh, doesn't really make anything worse than they already are underwater/on Antarctica/in the Sahara.

Comment Re:Anti-Hillary is not Pro-Trump (Score 1) 867

If you live anywhere but the few swing states, a vote for anyone BUT a third party is throwing away your vote. You won't make any difference in the outcome of the election (because you're not in a swing state), AND you won't make any difference in either party's policies (which they adapt to court voters who defect to third parties). All you're doing is voting for the status quo, in which case you may as well have not voted.

Comment Re:come on, you can read (Score 1) 424

The Supreme Court isn't responsible for anything but the proper enforcement of incorporation, which is plainly spelled out in codified law in the Fourteenth Amendment:

No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States

If anything, they have interpreted against the literal meaning of that, which has the implication that states have only the same claims and powers (the inverse of privileges and immunities) as Congress, and thus conversely (when combined with the ninth and tenth amendments) people have privileges and immunities against the vast majority of laws that state governments pass.

In other words, go down the list of enumerated powers for Congress. The ninth and tenth amendments spell out that those are the only kinds of things Congress can pass laws about, and all other action or inaction on the part of the people or the states is permitted. Then the fourteenth amendment says the states are as limited as Congress, which makes virtually everything on the part of the people permitted. Not actually everything, but a lot more than is actually permitted in practice.

User Journal

Journal Journal: I decided to submit a story again

I found what I thought was great story. I submitted it and what a change in the process now. Instead of it getting rejected in 30 seconds it has been on the fire hose for over a month. It quickly turned orange ( I still don't know what that means ) and stayed there. I guess the story is dead in the water.

I'm sure it will get deleted so here is the story for the 2 people who accidentally ended up here.

Submission + - Five surprising ways AI could be a part of our lives by 2030 (sciencemag.org)

sciencehabit writes: Artificial intelligence (AI) has gradually become an integral part of modern life, from Siri and Spotify’s personalized features on our phones to automatic fraud alerts from our banks whenever a transaction appears suspicious. Defined simply, a computer with AI is able to respond to its environment by learning on its own—without humans providing specific instructions. A new report from Stanford University in Palo Alto, California, outlines how AI could become more integrated into people’s lives by 2030, and recommends how best to regulate it and make sure its benefits are shared equally. Here are five examples—some from this report—of AI technology that could become a part of our lives by 2030.

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