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Comment Re:"...diets heavily based on venison and fish..." (Score 1) 107

meat good, grain bad.

You are extrapolating madly, here. Firstly, what they have been living on in the past has been wild caught fish and deers, not pork and beef from some cattle factory, where they have been reared on antibiotics, growth hormones and heavily processed animal feed.

Secondly, people who swear by the fad diets like the high-fat diet and the socalled paleo diet generally ignore the fact that when we were mostly foragers, scavengers or hunter-gatherers, we would have lived on sparse resources, and would have eaten anything we came across, including fruits, grass seeds, leaves, rhizomes and insects. It would not have been prime cuts of beef every day - or even every week; more like a thin layer of leathery meat attached to a bone.

It is well-known that eating meat, and especially red meat is an important factor in the development of gout as well as several cancers. You may scoff at the threat of gout, but having your first gout attack tends to wipe the grin off; and chronic gout is actually a disease that kills. A much more likely reason why these people used to be lean but are now getting obese is the simple fact, that in the past getting your daily meal involved a lot of hard work - you would walk great distances with your reindeer, you would go fishing and so on. Now, cheap food has become easily accessible in abundance and without much effort. Mystery solved.

Comment Re:Overboard, Sad! (Score 3, Informative) 108

If it truly was an accident and everyone was acting in good faith I think this is a rather severe overreach by the sentencing party.

Two pounds is about 1 kg, the weight of an average iron mallet, I'd say - more or less. Being hit on your head with a falling mallet could very easily kill you - it is only luck that saved this woman. Also, flying a drone is a deliberate act that does in fact carry the risk that it might fail for whatever reason and drop out of the air, which is why there are very clear rules banning you from flying near to people - not to mention near to buildings, overhead cables, and other things that the drone might hit. As it stands, this is not all that different from hurling a mallet or brick out over a crowd "just for a bit of fun"; it doesn't really matter that you were too dim to realise that it is wrong - the damage is the same.

Comment Re:Didn't trump want to block this? (Score 1) 71

Trump tends to be a constitutionalist, he doesn't like the government overstepping it's boundaries. I think the Justice Department and FTC need to be looking at abolishing all regulations and subsidies that grant these big players monopoly status while keeping small players out of the market and investigate them for past performance (how long have we been paying for broadband buildout, if you are under 20, your parents were already paying for it).

Comment Re:Building restrictions (Score 1) 615

I'm curious what "unwarranted" mean. Does that mean it's for In-Laws you hate and feel you don't deserve to live with, or you think you don't deserve to have to know them?

"In-law unit," I guess, is an SF colloquialism. It just means a small apartment within a house or other dwelling, usually designed for just 1-2 occupants. Picture something small, probably a single room plus its own washroom, maybe off the garage or in the basement.

"Unwarranted" means it's an illegal living unit. The owner didn't obtain permits to build it, and it probably isn't up to code. So you'd better be pretty friendly with whomever you rent it to (do in-laws count?) because if something is deemed actually unsafe -- like it has no heat, or the wiring is subpar -- you can be sued, if the tenants know their rights.

Comment Re:Building restrictions (Score 1) 615

But because San Francisco (and the whole Bay Area) think that everyone should have a veto on what everyone else does with their property, rebuilding doesn't happen, demand continues to rise, and the city becomes affordable only by the rich.

This paints the problem in too-narrow terms. Sure, the owner converts a single-family dwelling to a 10-unit tower and 9 (or more) additional people move to San Francisco. And lets say this happens to single-family dwellings all over the City. Multiply those new residents by a thousand or more. See what I'm getting at?

Where will all the infrastructure to support these new residents come from? I'm assuming not everybody who lives in these new units will want the hassle of owning a car in a City that's all but openly hostile to them -- and if they did, the gridlock would be totally unworkable. But the 15, 30, and 45 buses across town are already choked wall-to-wall with people. You literally have to ram your way in. BART (the intercity light rail system) is in a shambles. My daily commute downtown (a total of five stops) is often a standing-room-only affair, and any light weather causes delays. On some of the higher-traffic commuter stations, you can regularly expect one or even all of the escalators to be out of service, leaving huge crowds to pile out of trains onto the platforms and march up a few flights of stairs. Some of the staircases are single-file, so the queue just to leave the station can be 30-40 people long.

And where will they shop? Stores in San Francisco -- I'm thinking of something like a Target (department store) or a Safeway (supermarket) -- are typically smaller than their counterparts in cities with more overall real estate. Expect long lines for food and sundries.

And don't forget taxes! Sure, a bigger population does increase the tax base. But will it increase it enough to afford to hire all the extra firefighters and the upgrades they'll need to their engines and equipment to accommodate all those new towers? Ditto the police you need to support the population increase? And when every vehicle on the road is a private corporate bus shuttling workers back and forth from Silicon Valley, who will pay to repair the roads (which are already crumbling)? And the transit systems are once again claiming they need to either float multibillion dollar bond measures or raise the ticket fees -- as they do every other year.

So in short, just adding new people to the population won't solve San Francisco's problems. What longtime San Francisco residents recognize is that you're not talking about solutions, you're just talking about more development -- something that would please the kleptocrats in City Hall greatly, but won't do a lick to correct the complete imbalance in living costs we're currently experiencing.

P.S. Another idea I hear is that San Francisco should just accept that it needs to become more like Manhattan, with the East Bay becoming more like the other boroughs. But the major difference between the Bay Area and New York is that the Five Boroughs constitute a single tax base, under a single city government. San Francisco and the nearest cities in the East Bay aren't even in the same counties.

Comment Re:Leave. (Score 1) 615

I spent 20 years in Kansas(and decades more growing up in the south). I can assure you that Lawrence is an oasis of decency compared to the majority of Kansas. Some of the most viscous, bigoted assholes I've ever had the misfortune to have met came from small towns in Kansas. I got my kids the hell out of there, and I have never felt for a moment that I didn't make the right decision.

Seconded. Lawrence is basically what Americans call "a college town." It's got lots of things that cater to students and youngish people, like hip bars and restaurants and bespoke clothing stores and comic book stores. Companies sponsor events there to amuse people. But it's still basically an island. My friends who lived in Kansas City had some very pleasant, LGBT neighbors etc. But they also met folks who fit that "vicious, bigoted asshole" category (and this was in a major city -- the towns are far worse).

These weren't the run-of-the-mill rednecks we get in the Bay Area (and we surely have them). For large areas of Kansas, it's not so much "flyover country" as it is "conservative talk radio country." Plenty of people living there are quite content to spend their entire day hearing descriptions of the bestial practices of the Muslims and the Mexicans and what dire things are sure to come of it all.

Comment Re:sigh (Score 1) 104

that would be an interesting twist: lots of new beachfront property.

As opposed to what is going to happen, which is lots of old properties become beachfront :)

Well, maybe you're right, but even if this was something of a 1970s meme, the fact was that it was at best a view held by all a minority of researchers, and even those researchers weren't proposing that Ice Age was going to happen any time soon, save perhaps in geological time.

Comment Re:sigh (Score 1) 104

It sounds more like anecdotal claims of dubious merit to me. I've suspected for several years now that posters who proclaim that they were told this by college profs were either exaggerating or simply making it up, basing it on something they read elsewhere on the Internet. As it is, even the article I mention suggests that, at the time, there were some legitimate fears that sulfur dioxide aerosols from industrial pollution could lead to cooling, but that that view was only held by a minority of climatologists, and never really seems to have been viewed by the wider scientific community as a significant issue. Fifty years ago, the research was much as it is today, that human CO2 emissions will trap more energy in the lower atmosphere and lead to surface warming. In reality, AGW is about as controversial in the scientific community as biological evolution or Big Bang cosmology.

Comment Re:The benefits of Single Payer (Score 1) 111

I can only speak to the work I've done in a fairly small project that merged multiple sources and creating a set of file formats and protocols to communicate changes. It certainly wasn't trivial even in my case, and working with vendors to create interfaces in their own applications to work with these protocols could be a challenge. I suppose in many instances with aging infrastructure, you may also be dealing with fairly old systems where finding expertise to actual build interfaces could be a problem. But the theory I was operating under is that you create a common environment that discrete systems can push to and pull from was still a lot cheaper and manageable than telling everyone involved "We're moving you over to a new system".

It seems rather odd to me, as a person who comes from a networking background, that there would be this obsession over running the identical application, or running a centralized application, in all agencies or departments, is necessary or even desirable. The world I started out my professional life in was dominated by networking protocols, whether we're talking low-level data exchange protocols like TCP/IP or NETBIOS or higher level protocols like SMTP. One never really expected that all front end applications would function the same, or possibly even do precisely the same things, but you built message-exchanging protocols, databases and file formats that captured the data and activities that could at a minimum be expected by all the front-facing high level applications, and then the only problem you might have to deal with is where one particular application didn't support all the necessary features.

This monolithic system approach just seems so very 1950s-1960s to me, and suffers the same kinds of problems that older approach often had, with too many critical failure points that would simply bring an entire system down, where having a distributed system with multiple independent or semi-independent nodes meant that failures were at least limited, and the wider system could still function. It strikes me that the current drive in many governments towards monolithic centralized CRM-style applications is the product of both heavy sales pressure from big guys like HP and Oracle, and a lack of perspective and experience by organizational IT decision-makers.

Comment Re:sigh (Score 2) 104

From what I can gather, the actual researchers suggesting a new Ice Age were not talking in fact about an imminent return of continent-spanning glaciers. That was hyperbole by science journalists of the time. This is why I find people who make claims of the state of any area of research based upon what some science reporter in a newspaper or magazine writes is a pretty dubious activity. Science journalists, to put it bluntly, spend their days sexing up often rather mundane or esoteric research into something that can produce "wow-pow!" headline, often betraying their own ignorance of the research in question.

Comment Re:sigh (Score 1) 104

And once again, what does the musings of a Law Professor in 1970 have to do with the state of the science in 1970? I don't give a flying f--- about 1970 climate zeitgeist. That's not the claim. The claim is clearly that climatologists in the 1970s believed the world was entering a new glacial period soon.

According to Skeptical Science, there were something like seven research papers in the period mentioning cooling, as opposed to over forty talking about temperature rises due to CO2.

The Skeptical Science entry goes further to suggest that some of the reasons some researchers were positing cooling was due to SO2 releases at the time. One can debate whether those releases would have slowed temperature increases, but seeing as that SO2 limits were put in place, that's rather a moot point.

So what we have is a few alarmist articles of the period, little of their content apparently based on climatology research even at the time, and the usual anecdotal claims of "I remember my professor/teacher/some guy on TV saying the ice age was coming." In other words, no, few if any climatologists actual thought there was an ice age, and by that point, even 45-47 years ago, global warming due to human CO2 emissions was seen as a real phenomenon.

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