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Interviews: Ask Martin Shkreli a Question 410

Martin Shkreli has agreed to answer your questions. Shkreli is the co-founder of the hedge fund MSMB Capital Management, the co-founder and former chief executive officer (CEO) of the biotechnology firm Retrophin, and the founder and former CEO of Turing Pharmaceuticals. Shkreli has been active on Twitter about a wide range of topics, including the 2016 presidential election. Most recently, he expressed interest in buying 4chan.

Ask him your questions here, and we'll post the full interview with Shkreli's answers in the near future.

Comment What about drivers who "arrive" five minutes early (Score 1) 172

The last 4-5 times I've used Uber, the driver/app has told me that they're arriving, and I've gone outside to wait. Then I've continued to be outside waiting for another 3-5 minutes before the driver shows up. I'm not sure if this is the app screwing up, or the driver declaring they're there early, but it's annoying in the middle of the rain and even more so in the middle of Canadian winter,

I figure, if you're going to penalize me for being 2+ minutes late (which can easily be the time it takes to transit from inside while ready to wherever the Uber driver is), I should get a credit on my ride when the driver makes me wait.

Cutting the cancellation grace period to under two minutes while also cancelling the wait grace period seems like a good way to fuck customers over. If something comes up and I know I'm going to take a few more minutes than I thought when I initially requested the ride, now I can't cancel nor can I wait it out without getting screwed.

While I've mostly stopped using the service because the UberX drivers are by and large bad drivers that don't know where they're going, this garbage prompted me to uninstall the app.

Comment Re:0.075 (Score 1) 73

Had you read the summary, or the article, or the entire Wiki page you'd have caught that:

1. That they're referring to when a person's "blood alcohol level reaches 0.075" [In the article summary].
2. That the explanation given in the Wikipedia article explains what is meant by blood alcohol level, and notes that it is a term used along side Blood Alcohol Content.
3. The units of measure are interchangeable given the way they're measured, this is why the wiki article gives that handy This much in method A is equivalent to this much in method B chart. One gives a mass per volume, the other gives a volume per mass.
4. There is no mention of blood-alcohol percentage, only the beer's alcohol percentage.

If you're referring to the BrAC in use in some countries as the third unit in use, the wiki article clearly states this is a different unit of measure, and not one that the article mentions at all.

Comment Re:Dubious About This Survey (Score 4, Insightful) 53

At this point, does it really matter if people are simply taking steps to hide their Facebook posts, or if they're starting to PGP sign their emails?

People are starting to do something; starting to feel that it's important enough to do something. That's a positive step, each subsequent story makes them think "Oh, maybe I should do this thing more often, or keep these posts private." That increases the overall digital literacy, for lack of a better term, with each subsequent generation doing better than the past. Most people now know not to emails from strangers with attachments, if not most then certainly a lot more than did 5 years ago. Same goes for password practices, people know they should do better at them regardless of if they do or not.

Eventually people will, or services will do it for them, encrypt their phones, they'll put a half decent password on things, etc. It's just not going to happen overnight. We should be encouraging any little steps people take, not deriding them for not doing enough.

Comment Re:Good thing Canada's pretty much a "Gun Free" zo (Score 1) 529

We, in Canada, also count simple assault (slapping, spitting, pushing, etc, which result in no serious bodily harm) where the US does not. From the US wiki article:

"The reported US violent crime rate includes murder, rape and sexual assault, robbery, and assault,[54] whereas the Canadian violent crime rate includes all categories of assault, including Assault level 1 (i.e., assault not using a weapon and not resulting in serious bodily harm).[43][44] A Canadian government study concluded that direct comparison of the 2 countries' violent crime totals or rates was "inappropriate".[55]"

From the articles you linked to, it looks as though Ontario has the lowest rate of violent crime (900/100K residents) with Nunavut as the highest (10K/100K) with an overall rate of 1100/100K. Again, these rates include all forms of assault, not just ones that cause injury like the US does. The US has an overall rate of 386/100K, but does not include simple assault nor sexual assault in that total. Looking at the overall numbers paints Canada as a lot less safe than the US, but digging in a bit suggests that we're actually over-reporting in relation to the US. After having lived in the most violent city in Canada (Winnipeg) for 20+ years, and in some of the most violent places in the US (Baltimore, DC, Richmond) I can say, anecdotally, while I may've been more worried about getting a punch in the mouth in Winnipeg for telling someone to go fuck themselves, I was a lot more worried about getting shot so kept my mouth shut in Baltimore.

Comment Re:Gangs ARE the #1 murder motive according to CPD (Score 1) 529

I'm not saying that the majority of non-suicide gun deaths aren't related to criminal activity, I believe that's likely the case. I am saying that it's not 80%, and that discounting gang-related gun violence is not going to make America suddenly a murder-free zone, statistically speaking. Even if we assume Chicago in 2011 is a representative sampling of the country as a whole, gang-related death still makes up less than 35% of the total, removing that from the statistics makes a dent, but it doesn't drop America into the "lowest violent crime rates and murder rates in the world."

America has a gun problem, there's no doubt about that. But the problem isn't necessarily the fact that there are guns available, the problem (as I see it) is that there is a culture which celebrates violence, punishes poverty, abdicates any wide-spread social responsibility to those most vulnerable, and then gives that same populace access to highly efficient killing machines. I'll be the first to get shit from all the rest of my commie-hippy-liberal friends for defending the purpose behind the second amendment: securing the state and the population from tyrants. But I don't think that by and large, that's why Americans have guns. Americans have guns, for the most part, because they feel unsafe and wish to carve out a 9mm sliver of safety in a world they're told is out to get them.

That wish is all fine and dandy, but it doesn't do anything to address the causes of violence. The best thing that's happened to gun violence is social programs designed to remove and reduce the impacts of poverty, if the NRA et-al really wanted to stick it to the man and keep their guns in their cold dead hands, they'd be advocating poverty reduction strategies to eliminate gang-related gun violence; they'd be pouring money into substance abuse programs; mental health programs to prevent violent outbreaks from people with mental illness; legalization and decriminalization of drug USE and pushing sales into regulated schedules like they do with alcohol, tobacco and prescription drugs; they'd be doing what they can to end the over-incarceration of people which destroys community continuity and reduce the actual threats to gun ownership: the highly visible, easily scapegotable gang-related gun crimes.

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