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Comment Re: It did what it was designed to do (Score 1) 307

What incentives or penalties exist to encourage more safety instead of more profits?

You are thinking backwards. The incentives are designed to encourage rail transport over pipelines, because rail is dirtier, noisier, more dangerous, and less efficient, and many environmental activists believe that by making oil consumption even worse, we will encourage alternative energy.

Comment Re:It did what it was designed to do (Score 1) 307

but for workers in that facility it's a real problem, hence the cleanup expense

Then why not just close the facility and build a new one? That should cost a lot less than 2 BILLION dollars. My guess is that they didn't do that because this is "new money" directly allocated by congress, and didn't come from their existing budget, hence they had no incentive to control costs.

Comment Re:No more nukes (Score 1) 307

So how do you propose to have power then when you want it?

1. Storage. The price of Powerwalls is going down, and we are making progress on grid-scale storage.
2. Long range transmission. The wind is always blowing somewhere.
3. Demand shifting. Vary the price of power to fit the supply. I have a smart meter, and I pay more for day power than for night power. So I run the clothes dryer and dishwasher after 11pm (using the delay feature). My wife has programmed her Tesla to charge at 2:30am. Smarter appliances will make demand shifting easier.

Comment Re:Seems stupid... (Score 2) 191

you have proof of your assertion about white vs. black teen date-rapists.

There is no such thing as "proof" in the social sciences, but if you want evidence, then you can start here and follow the links. Blacks are discriminated against at every step of the process: they are more likely than whites to be arrested for comparable crimes, they are more likely to be prosecuted, and once convicted, they receive harsher sentences.

Maybe black rape is more prevalent and at earlier age....

Or maybe it isn't. You have provided no evidence either way.

Comment Re:Seems stupid... (Score 4, Insightful) 191

52% of rapists are white

No. 52% of convicted rapists may be white, but conviction rates vary widely by race even for the same crimes. A white teenage date-rapist is much more likely to "get away with it" than a black guy.

83.5% of the population is white.

Wrong. Whites are about 72% of the population. This isn't 1960.

None of which is good, but those are the facts.

Yup. Other than being wildly inaccurate and misleading, those are indeed the "facts".

Comment Re:Amazingly facile (Score 1) 331

No, but you could easily argue that the relatively free trade we engaged in even in the 70's and 80's was as much a "government-run program to import foreign goods" as the H1-B program.

That would be a silly argument. The freedom to trade is the natural order of things. It requires government action to prevent people from trading. Likewise, the freedom of people to travel is a natural right, and the H1-B program is designed to restrict that right by putting limits on who can come and how long they can stay.

Comment Re:Dey tek er jebs! (Score 1) 331

how do you explain that trade and prosperity have, at every point in history, gone hand in hand?

Trade increases prosperity, but it also increases inequality. There is plenty of prosperity in America, but is mostly going to highly skilled people and people that own capital.

So what is the solution? Many people, including Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders, think the answer is protectionism. But that has been tried, mostly unsuccessfully, many times before, and falls into the category of "simple, obvious, and wrong". Liberals tend to say the solution is "education", partly because they see that as the solution to everything, but government promoted education schemes don't have a good track record of getting people into jobs. Taxes on the rich to fund handouts for the poor, kills initiative, and is a political non-starter in America. There are no easy answers.

Comment Re: Dey tek er jebs! (Score 1) 331

Or perhaps you are a rock star programmer because you enjoy programming, and have no interest in the other 90% of the business that would be required of you if you went off to start your own thing.

Then team up with other under-appreciated rock stars and hire someone to do the management. If you really think that you are undervalued, and your competitors are mismanaged, then you should have no problem being successful.

Comment Re:Reclassify the sector (Score 1) 331

Reclassify the sector under national security interest that requires natural born US citizenship

If the political will existed to do that, then the same will could be used to simply eliminate the H1-B program.

Problem solved.

What problem? Tech workers see the problem as too many immigrants depressing tech wages. Most economists see the problem as a shortage of skilled workers, and believe that more skilled immigration helps the overall economy. The general public sees the problem as illegal Mexicans sneaking across the unwalled border, which has nothing to do with the H1-B program. Politicians see the problem as not enough campaign donations from companies that want H1-B expanded.

Comment Re:Stealth (Score 1) 117

Ground-based energy beam weapons will make all existing aircraft obsolete.

Energy beam weapons are not very effective against low-flying terrain following targets. So you take them out with cruise missiles before launching your main attack. Beam weapons are ineffective against kinetic energy weapons, which are being placed on ships, so they can be taken out if closer than ~100km to the coast. They are also ineffective against over-the-horizon targets, so if carriers are 300 km off your coast enforcing a naval blockade, you can't touch them with ground based beam weapons.

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