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Comment Re:IT is amazing (Score 1) 37

Most folks drink stale coffee. Try roasting your own (I use Sweet Maria's for supplies) or going somewhere with a roaster on site who is honest enough to tell you the roast date. It should be from 2 to 10 days ago. Flavor development in coffee is a rancidification process. Like cheese, you want to catch it when it is a little, but not too, rancid.

Comment Re:...Or Just Take Aspirin. (Score 1) 35

Let's not forget the effect of helicobacter pylori bacteria on ulcers, they are in general held to be the main cause these days.

I have another theory about the beneficial effect of aspirin, caffine, etc. We evolved with them. Our diet was rich in salycilates and chemicals similar to theobromine or caffine. They came from the plants we ate, some of which were mildly toxic and which we evolved to process to the point that we became dependent on some of their effects. There are a lot of things in the primitive diet that modern people don't eat much at all, like acorns which had to be soaked to remove alkalai and tannin.

If this is the case, taking aspirin and drinking coffee or tea replace substances found in a more primitive diet.

Comment Re:This story sponsored by (Score 1) 37

Actually evidence from the 1950s was mixed -- as it still is -- but in fact most of it stands up pretty well. What's a problem is the interpretation of that evidence and its limited nature (e.g. not knowing about different types of cholesterol).

For example it was established in the 50s that high blood cholesterol was a risk factor for cardiovascular disease. This is still believed as true, but what they didn't know at the time is what factors affected blood cholesterol. It was (plausibly although not conclusively) suspected by many that fat consumption would increase it; nobody suspected sugar... why should they?

In complex systems like the body there is usually conflicting evidence early on, which is resolved by further study.

Comment Re:Honesty is not a virtue (Score 1) 199

Just because you tell the truth doesn't mean you are a good person. It just means you aren't too worried about consequences

Of all the things that I would like people not to worry about the consequences of, telling the truth is at the top of the list. Indeed, in casual thought I cannot imagine anything else which should be on the list. We imagine that people withholding the truth from us are doing us a favor only because we have come to depend on being coddled in this way like sensitive children (or one might say special snowflakes) and it is to the detriment of all.

either out of stupidity or because you possess a large amount of power.

Those in power tend to have the most to lose if the truth is widely known, because power over others is amassed by abusing them.

Comment Re:[Corrected post] (Score 1) 199

I reflexively say "Thank you" to the toll-booth person who accepts my toll, but I'm not actually grateful to them. It's just a social convention and reflex to thank people who provide a service to you.

Well, stop it. You're cheapening the value of thanks.

Similarly, I walk around saying "How are you?" to people as I pass them in the hallway or whatever, but it's well-known that most people aren't seriously asking that question in more than a cursory "standard greeting" sense.

It strikes me as normal and productive to be concerned with the well-being of people around you, even if for no other reason than that what is affecting them might also affect you. That is, even if you don't give one tenth of one shit about someone, it is still rational to ask how they are doing.

How many Facebook posts do you see with at least 124 words in them, let alone over 500 words?

Most of them that have enough words to be worth examining. My friends are as apt to post tracts as one-liners.

In other words, you'd have a much better predictor if you knew where roughly somebody was from in the country and what states are around them rather than using these "integrity" ranking scores.

I do not need science to tell me not to trust anyone who lives in Florida.

Comment Re:Seems plausible (Score 1) 199

Such as when a person is drunk they are more likely to be honest because they lack the inhibition or capability of phrasing their words properly, and similarly drunk people do swear more.

By "properly" here you must mean "carefully", or even "deceptively", since you are not applying modifiers to "honest" such as "apparently". But someone becoming intoxicated and specifically not being able to select the word they are looking for is probably at least as likely to produce unintended statements which are inaccurate representations of their internal mental state as they are to reveal some secret working of their thought processes, if not moreso.

In vino veritas would not have any truth if the mechanism were simple bumbling. Instead, alcohol affects the inhibitions more than the abilities. That's why someone is often able to get their car out on the highway and up to ridiculous speed before they autoeuthanize under the influence of ethanol.

For example, I'm sure the mugger in the alley will use quite a lot of profanity without being honest.

Give me your wallet or you'll be sorry seems an exceptionally honest statement.

Comment Re: Fucking bullshit ... (Score 1) 199

Clinton never grabbed a woman by the pussy, nor endorsed the practice. He got laid, which is different.

There is substantial area in between the two which is also across the line of what is acceptable. Taking advantage of a workplace relationship involving a severe imbalance of power is unacceptable. And initiating a sexual act with a woman against her will on the same basis is also unacceptable. While Bubba was never actually convicted of same, there's ample indication that he played fast and loose with the ethics of working in the white house. I don't want to directly equate him with Trump, but the two are directly comparable, and Clinton doesn't come out looking like a saint.

Comment Re:Potential military applications are really scar (Score 2) 46

I'd think from a military standpoint what you want is soldiers who make better battlefield decisions, not ones that engage in a stereotypical behavior regardless of circumstance.

The human brain is both massively adaptable and subject to modification by information inputs. Which means you can indoctrinate men into becoming mindless killing machines. The problem is that historically that approach doesn't seem to be effective either tactically or strategically. US Marines faced waves of suicide attackers in the Pacific theater of WW2, which must have been terrifying, but in the end worked to the US advantage.

On the other hand George Washington's great talent as a general was retreating. He could attack a much larger and better equipped army and then make his army disappear before they could react. That was terrifying in its own way, and much more miltarily effective.

Given a fight between men fighting to kill and men fighting to survive, all other things being equal I'd put my money on the men trying to survive.

Comment Re: Note: Gravity wave != Gravitational wave (Score 1) 55

In meteorology, we usually discuss stability in terms of parcels because, although imperfect, the assumptions of parcel theory are close enough to be useful in explaining a lot of processes in the atmosphere.

I suppose my problem with it is the name. A parcel is a package. It's wrapped up in a container, by definition, even if that container is just paper. Why are scientists forever picking the most shit name for something? I guess this is a corollary to the saying about never letting software developers name anything. It seems that nerds in general should have their naming powers revoked.

Would you like to contribute to the discussion, or are you just here to troll me, as your most recent post implies?

I was actually just being snarky and making a funny, but once you started to rant, it did make me happy that you weren't enjoying it.

Comment Re:UK costs will numerically match those of the US (Score 1) 33

Well that just makes no sense, whatsoever.

[citation needed]

its basically charging arbirtarily different prices in different regions and pocketing the difference.

It costs different amounts of money just to do business in different regions. Why should the prices not reflect this? With their stronger consumer protection laws, it has to be more expensive to do business in the UK.

Comment Re:This story sponsored by (Score 2) 37

You know, this kind of shallow cynicism actually makes you easier to dupe, because it's not evidence-based; it's what-sounds-truthy-based.

This article was published in Nature, which requires a complete disclosure of institutional affiliations and financial conflicts. That doesn't mean the system is perfect, but it's about as good as it gets, especially given that Nature is one of the most prestigious scientific journals in the world. Nature Medicine has an eye-popping 30.357 impact factor, making it the fourth most highly cited medical journal in the world after the New England Journal of Medicine, The Lancet, and Journal of the American Medical Association.

Does it mean you should immediately believe anything that's published in Nature Medicine? No. You should wait until it is cited in a literature review article in one of those top journals before making any health decisions based on it. However as individual papers go, this is as credible as they get.

Researchers have been trying to take caffeine down for decades. Nobody can quite believe that something so enjoyable as coffee isn't bad for you. In fact doctors used to routinely warn their patients off coffee because of all the bad things it would do to them, but in fact when researchers tried to confirm all the things doctors knew about why coffee was bad for you, none of them turned out to be true, with narrow exceptions for certain populations (e.g., coffee doesn't cause ulcers as we used to be told, but if you have an ulcer coffee will make the symptoms worse).

What researchers found were surprising benefits, including what appears to be evidence of reduction in risks for multiple forms of cancer and even a reduction in suicide risk.

Coffee is well on its way to becoming the first evidence-backed superfood.

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