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Comment No. It didn't "predict" anything. (Score 0, Troll) 186

It reacted when there were "obvious" signs of trouble, and it didn't "predict" anything. The 2nd car in front was slowing fast enough that the Tesla would have started to brake on its own -- just as happened here. Would a person have noticed and reacted in the same way? Maybe; probably not. What I'm saying here isn't dismissing what the Tesla did...but the Tesla also didn't "predict" anything or see into the future; it reacted to inputs that were already present, and a good and attentive human driver might have done the same thing. Once perfected, self-driving cars and accident avoidance technology will make the roads safer â" but let's not make them seem magical, because they aren't.

Comment There is, and will be, no "Muslim registry" (Score 1, Informative) 600

They are protesting something that will never be created, because when the rhetoric was translated into reality, it was a proposal to reestablish the National Security Entry-Exit Registration System (NSEERS)[1], which was in force through half of President Obama's presidency, and which tracks certain individuals who enter the United States based on country/region of origin and other factors. Useless publicity stunt with commensurate absolutely abysmal coverage by The Intercept.

See also:

8 U.S. Code  1182 - Inadmissible aliens[2]

"Suspension of entry or imposition of restrictions by President:

Whenever the President finds that the entry of any aliens or of any class of aliens into the United States would be detrimental to the interests of the United States, he may by proclamation, and for such period as he shall deem necessary, suspend the entry of all aliens or any class of aliens as immigrants or nonimmigrants, or impose on the entry of aliens any restrictions he may deem to be appropriate."


"The Secretary of State and the Attorney General will invalidate all visas issued to Iranian citizens for future entry into the United States, effective today. We will not reissue visas, nor will we issue new visas, except for compelling and proven humanitarian reasons or where the national interest of our own country requires. This directive will be interpreted very strictly."[3] -- President Jimmy Carter, April 7, 1980

[1] https://www.ice.gov/nseers
[2] https://www.law.cornell.edu/us...
[3] http://www.presidency.ucsb.edu...

Comment Re:This is participation and dialog (Score 1) 244

Does anyone... anyone... seriously believe that Trump will pay attention to any thoughts and direction to come from this Strategic and Policy Forum? Will he listen at all?

Thus far Trump has ignored most briefings on a wide variety of critical topics, refused his daily presidential briefings to prepare for taking over the office, held mock forums in which he assembles rooms full of people smarter than him and then berates and insults them (e.g. the post-election summit with news org leaders, among others), and is generally packing his cabinet choices with loud logic-challenged people with little or no experience related to the orgs they've been named to. These aren't even the best right-wing choices, they're almost randomly selected friends and business associates -- while Trump himself is relentlessly resistant to external input or validated data.

The initial fear of many on the left was that Trump would take the country on hard turn to the right, but instead he seems to be going straight to a chaotic shitshow. Is it believable that Trump will suddenly now start taking informed advice seriously? Ever?

Comment Re:Well then... (Score 1, Troll) 590

It means serving patrons in a world in which government surveillance is not going away; indeed it looks like it will increase.

Why didn't they start this years ago when Obama extended and expanded the Patriot Act? Sounds like more leftist hypocrisy and hyperbole to me.

Sounds like more SOP conservative false equivalence to me: President Obama never threatend a crackdown on dissent, never threatened to jail his opponents, and never showed himself predisposed to seek revenge against critics with as many levers of power as are at his disposal.

Comment Re: Trump is already a uniter (Score 1) 637

Even the URL contains the word "purports", which casts doubts on the accuracy, which is highly questionable based on the source of the video. The content of the highly-questionable video even explicitly says it was not about the 2016 election.

Comment Re:What you sir want is a parliment (Score 1) 1430

you want your rural state to get proportional representation.


If someone gave me the godlike power to craft a fair system of government for our country, it would probably be parliamentary with proportional representation, so as to prevent the situation that the Canadians are dealing with, where they have a parliament, but still have a "two party system," so they still have problems with the two parties not totally representing all Canadians between the two of them. I do think their "two parties" do a better job than ours at representing a bigger proportion of the population, but I'm sure there are some valid, but not popular viewpoints in Canada that aren't represented by the Conservatives nor the LIberals.

Comment Re:So (Score 1) 1430

Most political systems have some degree of protection for rural areas to prevent them from being utterly steamrolled and dominated by the cities.

Very true, but we have that even without the Electoral College--we have individual constitutional rights that are supposed to serve that function. And if the "steamrolling" they fear is one that is political rather than tyrannical, I'm not sure why rural states should get to be "protected" from being in the minority as long as the thing being done doesn't violate those individual rights.

Consider the current situation, which more or less amounts to a tyranny of the minority, especially when you factor in the "southern states/rural states" Republican "majority" that exists despite not having received a majority of the votes in "The people's house" since 2010. In fact, they got fewer votes in 2012, 2014, and 2016 than they did in the "wave" election of 2010, but have vastly more seats after those elections than they got in 2010.

Tyranny by the minority is just as tyrannical as tyranny by the majority.

Comment Re:So (Score 1) 1430

Maybe its time to get rid of the entire union.....

Impossible--those flyover states also consume the bulk of the welfare dollars pad into by the productive coastal states. Break up the union, you create an instant refugee crisis for the productive states as unemployed rednecks who think "College is a scam so I ain't going--now where's my money-check?!?!?!" suddenly can't afford to exist because the productive big cities simply stop subsidizing them, as they're now part of a "different country."

Now, the possibility of "Regional autonomy" government solution (where the existing 50 states going one of several "provinces" that are governed separately, rather than at the Federal level) might be possible. ...But you still end up with basically the same problem: No province would want to get stuck with, say, Mississippi and Alabama, and Louisiana, the three lowest performing states economically and academically. Of the three, Louisiana is probably the "prize," what with the sea port and oil resources... But that's still not saying much.

Comment Re:Electoral college does reflect the popular vote (Score 1) 1430

Hillary Clinton won 300 counties while Trump won 5000. If you think that the election of a nation should be swayed by a handful of cities while the rest of the nation is completely ignored, well, you're an idiot.

Not so fast, Billy Bob... Some of those "counties" have fewer residents than single neighborhoods even a small city. So perhaps a better way to say it is "If you think rural voters are somehow so superior to city dwellers that they should get their way despite accumulating 2 million fewer votes for their preferred candidate, well, you're an idiot."

Comment Re:Working as designed (Score 1) 1430

So bottom line, slavery is defunct, so we no longer need to appease slave states

Ah, there's the "it's racist". Thanks for conceding the argument.

Ah, I see what you did there by failing to quote the second half of my point (where I acknowledged it "was racist" when used to that purpose, but isn't anymore now that it isn't.)

Racism/slavery wasn't the only reason the electoral college was instituted... It absolutely was racist when instituted, but since the "3/5" part of it was struck down by the 14th amendment, it's now just a pointlessly old fashioned contrivance to "protect us" from the tyranny of ill-informed rural voters, rather than racist.

A much better argument than racism for eliminating it is in the inequality of value assigned to votes. For example, it takes four times as many votes in Michigan to gain the vote of an elector as it does in Wyoming--which is complete bullshit which allows a state with barely any people a much louder voice for each of its citizens than far more populous Michigan. And it really sucks when you look at how many votes you need in California to get an electoral vote vs. one of the bullshit states.

Yes, I do think of small states as "bullshit." Having lived in Indiana lo these past 15 years I feel I can speak from a place of some authority when I say that.

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