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Comment Re:Fucking Yanks, world police. (Score 1) 209

The US goobermint spends more per capita on healthcare than the UK's one.
The UK system covers everybody.
The US system covers veterans, the very old and some of the very poor.

While it's true that some countries don't pull their weight defence wise, it would appear that it's something else that's stopping you having something like the NHS.

Take a look at our political system, and who it puts in charge.

I have a hard time finding a nationally elected US politician that I would be willing to put in charge of the contents of my trash can, let alone anything actually relevant or important.
Especially when looking at the presidential election this year, would you trust *either* of them to actually spend the money on proper health-care instead of using the money to buy votes or line their own pockets?

Comment Re:Oh dear, poor SpaceX. (Score 1) 55

"But what SpaceX are attempting to do has the potential (at very least) to bring about significant changes to the history of space travel."

I seriously doubt that. Lauching might become cheaper but thats all. Until a completely new type of space drive system is invented that doesn't rely on chucking mass backwards to move forwards humans won't be going much further than the moon again anytime soon. Even trips to mars are a pipe dream due to it being a one way trip.

All Henry Ford did was make automobiles cheaper. Clearly that had no real impact on the history of cars.

Once you get costs cheap enough, all sorts of unrealistic things become possible.
Why don't families go to an orbital space station for a holiday? noon could afford it
Are there manufacturing processes that work better in micro-gravity? Yep, but none are currently cost effective.
Why don't we mine asteroids instead of strip-mining earth? it is cheaper to mine on Earth.

If you make it cheap enough, space will no longer be the domain of governments and the rich, but something everyone can make use of, and there is no telling what people will come up with.

Also, the only reason Mars is currently a one-way-trip is because it is too expensive to launch the materials for a round trip.

Comment Re:The last set showed laws broken by DNC (Score 1) 333

How about: 5. The RNC is too paranoid to use email for these kinds of arrangements/conversations

I prefer:
6. the RNC is so divided that all the dirt of any relevance they can find is already being flung, so by the time hackers find anything juicy, it is already plastered across CNN

A little like 2(The RNC can be hacked, and is clean.), but more realistic.

Comment Re:Check out Modest Needs charity (Score 2) 618

Sounds a lot like the St. Vincent de Paul society.
They seem to have chapters at just about every Catholic church I have been to.
You go to the church asking for help, the put you in contact with St VdP and you explain your need to them.

From what I understand there is usually a home-visit checking for things like 'I can't pay my electric bill because I spent all my money on a new $500 TV'
Then they help you pay the bills you need help with.

Aside from checking for frivolous expenditures, the only requirement I am aware of is you need to go to the church which serves your geographic location(your parish). As far as I am aware there is no requirement related to your religion, but it would probably be a good idea to take down any symbols or decorations around your house that may leave a bad taste in the mouth of those coming to see if you would make responsible use of the money you are asking them for.

Comment Re:Spare $1,500/month for new immigrant won't work (Score 1) 618

Everyone with a salary or hourly wage is required to pay pay-roll taxes, and above a minimum threshold, income taxes as well.(billionaires included, but few of them have this sort of income)

There is also the Capital Gains tax(~15% I believe) on any income from investing back in the economy(this is where most billionaires get income)
In theory this is to encourage investments in the economy as that increases the GDP and helps there to be more for everyone.
This was more valid back when the stock-market had more to do with capitol investments in companies and less to do with High Frequency Trading.

Comment Re:They'll never be persuaded by facts. (Score 0) 303

You have a very simplistic view of anyone critical of mainstream climate change attitudes. If there's a common attribute to the critics I think it would be anti-alarmism.

Between politicians trying to take advantage of any alarm they can foster to push pet projects and technologies to reclaim land from the ocean that have been proven over hundreds of years(1/6 of the current Netherlands was swamp/ocean before they started building dikes hundreds of years ago, along with parts of San Francisco and many other places: ) I would agree that I am more anti-alarmist than anti-global warming. The only thing I know for certain about man-made climate change is that it has been so much of a political football that I am not in a position to be certain one way or the other.

Personally I support postponing the next glacial period, or possibly even ending the current ice age. Our current climate is really hard on plants and animals causing regular periods of dormancy/starvation for most of the planet(not counting the technologies humans have managed to leverage to mitigate those periods for ourselves and our animals).
If the melting of the ice-caps would flood large swaths of valuable land, then just build dikes, it has worked for hundreds of years, no reason for it to stop working now. (might be easier to build those dikes before the flooding instead of after, but either will work)

Comment Re:RNC? (Score 1) 133

Would Obama do the same thing if it was the Republican National Convention?

They probably did, but having proof that the RNC colluded to try and stop Trump would be such a non-event that it might even increase political stability.

Presumably the goal here is to cause instability by undermining the candidate that is being proclaimed as the likely next president by the major media outlets.
And if those claims turn out to be more wish than fact, it still servers to make politicians nervous.

Comment Re:No chance (Score 2) 267

If the USA is unable to stop it by conventional means, then absolutely, yes.

  That's exactly how deterrence works.

And the moment you show you're unable or unwilling to use it, all bets are off, everywhere, for every US ally. The threat becomes useless if you reach the point where you would use it, and you blink and back down instead. The USA would no longer be able to deter China from anything short of an invasion of the mainland USA - and even then, if you keep drawing lines in the sand and I keep crossing them, at what point do I start thinking you'll suddenly change just because I cross another one?

Like the US used nukes to defend the Ukraine just as we swore to do in exchange for them getting rid of their nuclear weapons?

I hope that deterrence is not broken unless and until we prove our willingness to use Nukes again, but I fear it may be.

Comment Re:And So It Begins... (Score 1) 220

Rush hours will likely be much less of a hassle because the SDC's will be able to handle the congestion much more efficiently and intelligently.

Only up to a certain point, and as politicians would rather spend money on themselves, this will just mean less road construction until things are at least as bad as they were under human control (probably worse, as the time-cost is not as severe when you can do other things during the trip, so less pressure will be brought to bear on fixing things).

Comment Re: End game? (Score 3, Interesting) 152

They no longer participate in society. No marriages. No offspring.

You think people are going to stop fucking because they are mad at politicians...? Or that people would cause their own economic downturn and willingly give up their jobs, and in turn food & shelter? Uhhh... No thanks.

Ever heard a phrase to the effect 'This is not a world I would want to bring a child into'?

Between abortions and contraceptives there is no need to stop having intercourse, just stop having babies. Without immigration, the population of 'first world' countries is already shrinking.

Also, the worse the economic climate, the more people will save their money against future problems. Not everyone, but those with discretionary income will be more inclined to save it up or put it somewhere safe as opposed to making more purchases or making riskier investments.

Have you heard the phrase 'jobless recovery' much in the last few years?

I doubt it is any sort of intentional protest, but if people do not have confidence in their leaders, they will tend to hold back.
(if you are stuck with the choice between Trump and Hillary, and the one you want least wins, will you celebrate by going out and buying a car?)

Comment Re:Size of the animal (Score 1) 209

Want to explain why mice or gerbils or hamsters don't live to be 100 then?

Smaller critters often have a very high metabolism and that wears out the heart and other organs quite fast.

A normal cat's heart rate is between 140 and 220 bpm Lifespan ~15 years
Dog: 60-140 beats/min Lifespan: 13y
Gerbil: 260-600 beats/min Lifespan: 2-3y
Mouse: 310-840 beats/min Lifespan: 12-36m
Hamster: 310-480 beats/min Lifespan: 18-36m
google(cat, dog), (rodents)

You get a small critter with a slow metabolism and it should live for a very long time as it would have very little wear from either gravity or metabolism.
A good example of this might be the turtle:
Turtle: 25 beats/min Lifespan: 80y
80 years sounds like a pretty good lifespan for a critter with little or no modern health care...

Comment Re:That cuts both ways (Score 2) 92

Simple solution - socialise your healthcare.

Having seen how thoroughly the US government has botched other social programs, and the amount of bureaucratic over-head caused by every congressperson trying to get cut-outs for their donors(and occasionally for their voters), I cannot see US socialized medicine as a viable option.

Other countries have managed to do this with more or less success, but so long as the US government continues to treat its citizens as enemies, those citizens are unlikely to (and probably should not) trust that same government to have control over their health care.

Perhaps once politicians and bureaucrats have won the trust and support of the American people we can have a rational discussion about socialized medicine in the US, but most of them have not been working in that direction in a very long time...

Comment Re:How is this news for nerds? (Score 1) 1083

"That's not true for gay marriage, where literally nothing but the label on a line on a form changes."

Nothing but a label.

Fair enough, I have a couple more labels I would like to change:
owner/pet to spouse/spouse
no other changes needed.
This is an even better match because just as sodomy is/was illegal in many jurisdictions, bestiality is often illegal now.

And for some of those in the BDSM community:
Spouse/Spouse to owner/slave
or even
Spouse/Spouse to owner/pet

That is just as easy

You are not going to claim that a dog does not love their owner are you? Or an owner that claims to love their dog?

Comment Re:I can agree to that... (Score 4, Interesting) 176

"would have rivaled the old East German Stasi"

Are you kidding me? When was the last time you feared for your life because you said the president is doing a crappy job? How many of your relatives or friends have disappeared into the night?

Hear about what happened to political activists in Wisconsin when they went against the unions or supported those who did?

If something similar is going on today, it would be illegal for anyone to talk about it.
So unless you have personally tried to take political action against the President or other entrenched powers, what makes you think you would *not* be given cause to fear for your life and those of your loved ones should you do so?

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