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Comment Re:Surprised? (Score 1) 138

Indeed. They could have gotten around the problem completely by calling their game something else (Capsule Beasts, Pouch Mutants, etc.) and changing any graphics that were identical or too similar to the Nintendo games'. There's nothing that says that they can't make a similar game (and really there's already plenty of Pokemon knock-offs over the years) and release that instead. They still probably could have gotten a lot of support from the fan community or maybe even started their own series.

Comment Re:A Tale of Two Types (Score 1) 618

You can't just leave them as people aren't content to sit on the street and starve. They're far more likely to turn to begging, crime, or any other number of things that have a large societal cost. It's likely cheaper to subsidize them being worthless than it is to pay for the added police, prison, and social services costs associated with such individual's otherwise.

However, you can't expect everyone to be content with that payment and not be an even larger drain on society. I think that the solution to these individuals is a section of the country that's physically separated from the rest of the country where these people are placed and left to their own devices. Give them some basic resources and let them figure it out by cultivating their own food.

If you can't be content to exist completely at the behest of the rest of society, society should have no qualms with tossing you out if you fuck that up.

Comment Re:Very Basic Income (Score 1) 618

Based on your figures, that amounts to ~$1.47 trillion if we use the 2010 census data. Social Security, Medicare (and similar health programs), and other safety net programs accounted for a little over $2.18 trillion in 2015.

At that rate you could pay adults 18 and over $700 per month and children under the age of 18 $350 per month and break even assuming you eliminated those other programs. I'd suggest that all payments to children be deferred until they hit 18 otherwise you'll get some idiots acting like baby farms so they can get more money. $350 per month over 18 years comes out to about $75,000 which is enough to afford a 4 year college education for most people.

There may be some other reasonable changes such as a more graduated rate that slowly increases over time, such that people who have just turned 18 are only getting a small payment closer to $400, whereas older individuals are getting over $1000 as they're far less likely to be able to work full time and probably have increased medical expenses.

Comment Re:what about when the people can't pay there loan (Score 1) 100

College loans aren't wiped out by bankruptcy so you're stuck with them forever. This is a particularly nasty side-effect of the government guaranteeing the loans, but really it's fair since the government essentially ensures that pretty much anyone who wants to go to college can get the money in order to do so. This would be a perfectly find system if the people going to college had solid financial planning abilities or a decent bit of wisdom, but given that they're largely 18 year-old kids with little life experience neither of those are true.

Were the loans private, you'd probably see higher interest rates (because some students will default) as well as fewer students getting loans. I don't know if this would ultimately drive down the cost of college, but the actuaries sure as shit wouldn't be letting banks lend huge chunks of money to students wanting to major in underwater basket weaving unless they have wealthy parents who will cosign.

I think the current system would be mostly fixed if you allowed people to count college loan payments (instead of just loan interest) towards tax deductions. That would go a long way towards helping students who have run up a large loan debt and don't own a house, which covers a lot of people since they can't afford a house with their student loan debt.

Comment Re:Fuck Security (Score 4, Insightful) 105

Indeed. Get rid of the IOC and permanently hold the games in Greece and allow open coverage of the events. Right now the Olympics is just an excuse to funnel gobs of money to a small group of people that have nothing to do with making the olympics successful or worth watching and who despite having this golden goose are so corrupt as to give FIFA a run for their money.

Comment Re:a BAD sports team will pay for GOOD players (Score 1) 176

There could be a few other explanations as well. Big companies are more likely to be able to afford to pay higher salaries, but also may have the most difficulties growing the company's value as they either already control most of the addressable market and can't successfully branch into a new one or the market they dominate is in decline. For example, Tim Cook is paid exceptionally well, but they're largely tapped out in terms of growth. Some of their lines are declining, and others aren't seeing the same rapid year over year growth.

Meanwhile you have smaller start-up companies that pay their C-level employees less money, but can see the kind of explosive growth that the behemoth's went through decades ago. I suspect that's how we get a lot of this as someone had to be at the helm of the new company that really took off, even if that person didn't have any real part in it. A board at another company naively believes that person knows what they're doing and can turn things around at another company and starts offering obscene amounts of money. The gamble fails to pay off because this supposed golden CEO just happened to be in the right place at the right time and looks good by proxy.

Comment Re:RIP (Score 1) 56

And what most PC buyers wanted back in the day was a clean version of Windows that wasn't packaged with loads of bloatware and other crap, but the companies selling the computers (or TVs in this case) were getting paid a small bit to include all of that cruft that no one really wanted which let them undercut anyone who wasn't bundling. Most consumers have little more knowledge about TVs than they do about computers so they think the shit sandwich they're being served is supposed to be some kind of culinary pinnacle.

Comment Re:It's not money (Score 4, Insightful) 150

The same is true for most non-fiat currencies though. Sure you can always use gold or silver industrially, but it's not worth much otherwise as it's just some shiny metal. You could hypothetically make some kind of money backed by the entirety of all commodities or other human economic activity, but good look accounting for all of it accurately. Fiat currencies are largely a good enough approximation as long as you don't give some idiot control of the printing press or let the people decide to vote themselves bread and circuses without working to produce any of it.

Comment Re: TFA is not terribly clear... (Score 2) 233

It makes a big difference. The government may well have the legal authority to take my fingerprint, but they cannot compel me to reveal which of them or which part of one of them could unlock my device. Otherwise what's the difference between that and compelling me to indicate which combination of letters or numbers would unlike the device by using a pass code?

I hope device manufacturers include functionality to allow one time fingerprint access before falling back to needing password or PIN access. That way, even if law enforcement does have access to your prints, it would not guarantee them access to your device.

Comment Re:They sound completely insane (Score 5, Interesting) 328

I've often heard the following related, occasionally to point out the absurdity of corporate policy. There are several versions, but here's one I found from a quick Google search:

It happened that there were three monkeys in a cage. Suspended at the top if the cage was a bunch of bananas. There was a ladder from the floor of the cage up to the bananas. One of the monkeys, who was both clever and agile and also liked bananas, decided to head up the ladder to grab a banana.

Imagine his surprise (not to mention that of the other two monkeys) when suddenly a fire hose washed down the cage, blasting all three monkeys over to one side. Cold and shivering, the three monkeys regrouped and thought about what had happened.

Monkeys don’t have a real long memory and, after awhile, a second monkey thought again about the bananas and headed up the ladder. Same thing—a fire hose washed all three monkeys over to the side of the cage. They picked themselves up, shook themselves off and hoped the sun would come out to warm them up.

After another couple of hours, the third monkey couldn’t resist and he went for it. Sure enough, same result—fire hose and cold, wet, miserable monkeys.

Finally, all three monkeys became convinced that going for the bananas was a bad idea, and went on with the rest of their lives.

Then the zookeeper drafted one of the monkeys for another exhibit and replaced him with a new monkey. The new monkey arrived, looked up at the bananas, looked over at the ladder and couldn’t figure out why the other monkeys hadn’t gone for the bananas. He headed for the ladder and got about 1 rung up when the remaining "experienced" monkeys tackled him, dragged him to the floor and pummeled him into submission. He quickly concluded that climbing the ladder wasn’t a good idea.

A week later, the zookeeper replaced the second monkey. Monkeys are somewhat single-minded. The new monkey spied the bananas, headed for the ladder, and the remaining two monkeys tackled him and pummeled him into submission.

Finally the third monkey was replaced and, you guessed it, the same thing happened. So life went on among the monkeys and after some time the first of the "new" monkeys was replaced with yet another monkey. Sure enough, the new guy saw the bananas, went for the ladder and his two peers then tackled him and beat him into submission.

Why was that? None of these monkeys knew anything about the fire hose. None of them had ever gotten wet for having climbed the ladder in the quest for bananas. Yet the monkeys had been fully culturalized to know that it was a bad idea. And you could likely go on individually replacing monkeys one at a time forever and expect the same result.

The Parable of the Monkeys can be readily applied to just about every organizational community structure in the human sphere. We can laugh at the silly monkeys, but humans are the only creatures on Earth capable of amassing and arming themselves to fight and die by the tens and hundreds of thousands because another human claims yet another human is building firehoses to keep all the bananas for himself.

Comment Re:Not a surprise... (Score 1) 269

Your own link contradicts what you're claiming. Germany and Denmark have the highest prices (unless you know how to avoid paying VAT and the other taxes) in part because they subsidize their green energy production which drives the overall price up significantly. Plenty of other sources show this as well.

I don't know the specifics of the Australian market, but I would imagine some kind of fuckery is going on, possibly similar to what happened in California where someone in the private sector stumbled on some highly exploitable government policy. If a government tries to regulate a market in a way that makes it possible or easy to exploit, someone's going to do it, especially when the payout looks good. Same holds if the government starts granting private companies monopolies similar to the U.S. cable industry. Of course you're going to get stuck with a single provider, shit service, and a shit price when it's illegal for anyone else to compete.

Also, Australia has loads of the Thorium. Nuclear would be a a great investment for their future. You suggest that the government needs to "fix the market" as if that wouldn't create an equal amount of bureaucracy and regulatory bodies. No matter how much green power you invest in, unless you massively overbuild, you need something to serve as a solid base, unless you want to invest the tends of billions of dollars in a storage solution that'll be just as obsolete in a few decades.

Comment Re:So what is YOUR plan? (Score 1) 406

Indeed. As always, the solution to speech with which you disagree is free speech of your own.Make a website pointing out why ISIS is bad and how it tries to lure people in. That's going to do far more to prevent people from joining ISIS than trying to make it a crime to view a website.

Not only is this a bad idea on principle, but it's so easily abused and impossible to enforce. It would take all of about five seconds after it has been passed for some mischievous person, likely outside U.S. jurisdiction to start sending links to pro-ISIS websites to millions of unsuspecting people. Never mind things like web forums where anyone can post a pro-ISIS message, making potential criminals out of anyone who visits that particular thread or the site owner for not removing it in a timely manner.

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