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Comment Re:It's not about terrorism. (Score 1) 211

If this is really the case, then it will become a fun game. Make sure you know you are within your limits. In the lineup, talk with your spouse about all the incredibly expensive things that you bought, as well as discussing all manner of clever ways that people might get past their declaration, in hushed tones.

Declare exactly what you are bringing back.
Dare them to challenge you.
Overwhelm the system with false positives.

Sure it will be a bit of a hassle, but no good change ever happened in government without citizens dealing with some hassles.

Comment Re:Here we go (Score 1) 293

I will reply with some anecdotal evidence, if I may.

My mother is now retired after a long career as a public health nurse, and recently told me the story of her start as a nurse. She was assigned to one of the two floors in the local hospital dedicated to polio treatment and rehabilitation, with hundreds of patients, as the first mass polio vaccine was being introduced. Within two years of this happening, the polio wards were empty, and in the process of being repurposed.

So, you might be right about polio being in decline, on the order of going from 100 cases to 99 for example. My mother is very proud to have been a part of the effort that took polio from 99 cases to zero.

Comment Re:Blackmail? (Score 1) 214

How many times has your smartphone died by 3pm, and how much would you have paid to have it continue to run until you return to the place you normally charge it?

Its not the cost of the power that is the issue, its the convenience of having a working phone at the end of my work day.

Comment And brittanica did not see the threat (Score 4, Insightful) 288

I remember being at a trade fair of some sort shortly after Encarta came out. I had a copy and immediately saw that multimedia versions would eventually kill the paper version.

So I asked the Brittanica rep when they would have their electronic version out, and the attitude was literaly "its a passing fad, people we will always want the book version".

I think that phrase "its a passing fad" should almost qualify as investment advice. take a hard look at the passing fads, and buy in early! or even better, short the company that claims their threat is a passing fad.

Comment Re:Also (Score 1) 1055

Thank you! You speak to the one issue that offends me in this debate.

All of the discussions around AGW move from science to policy with frightening speed. And the policy is best describe as
- We must do something
- This is something
- We must do this.

But all of the proposals and policies thus far have been shown to not make a difference. Agreements like Kyoto are crap.

If you want to argue that all the science that has gone into climate change has passed rigorous vetting, then you need to apply that same rigor to the proposed solutions.

Or also be willing to accept that perhaps the best response will be to do nothing, and deal with the change.

Comment Re:Punish unjust copyright claims (Score 2) 287

Corporations as persons is a very narrow legal standing that simplifies some transactions that corporations are involved in. Are you really trying to argue that anything that pays taxes should get a vote? Because the USA has an estate tax, that is levied on the assets of a dead person. Who gets the vote in that situation, the dead guy, or the actual assets themselves? There is a tax on cigarettes and gasoline, how on earth will we get cigarettes go hold a pen so they can check the box?

At the end of all the figuring, it is an individual who is paying the tax, either the consumer, the beneficiaries of the estate, or the shareholders of the corporation. and these people are represented, as they have been able to vote.

By allowing corporations to have a say in politics, you are actually giving individual shareholders additional say in politics. They get their same original one vote, but now they get an additional vote, and additional influence through the corporation.

We are rightly disgusted when an individual tries to bride a public figure. But we are fine with that individual forming a corporation, and allowing the corporation to do the bribing?

Where did it all go so wrong?

Comment Re:Land of the free (Score 1) 192

Well, waiting until the rights you have left are similar to the rights they have in china before you complain might not be the best strategy.

I am always amused by the sentiment that Americans still live in the land of the free, because the government does not abuse you as badly as they do in china. Eventually, they will be as bad, and people will still say "yeah, but we are doing it for a good reason... like safety or liberty or protection of democracy"

I too expect armed insurrection in the USA in my lifetime.

Because people wont press for change until armed insurrection is the only solution left available to them.

Comment Re:I stopped reading the responses after... (Score 1) 920

Sounds like the gateway drug theory, and it has already been proven that the 'gateway' drug is actually tobacco/nicotine.

By the same criteria, breathing and eating food is also 'associated with addiction'.

Learn to deal with life without nicotine, to coin a phrase.

Comment Re:Doctor analogy (Score 1) 821

You ask the 98 doctors:
"What is the treatment for this illness, what are the side effects, and is the treatment worse than the disease?"
"If I elect to NOT undergo treatment, how will this affect my enjoyment of my life?"
"Is the treatment expensive, and if I can't afford the treatment, what are my options?"

In medical science, you would get a wealth of information about the treatment, likely results, side effects, effects of not treating it, advanced cases, alternative cures, and the 98 doctors would pretty much all agree, referring to the existing case studies and documentation.

In climate science, the 98 doctors would all wring their hands and say that they have never had to treat this before, they have no idea about the efficacy of the proposed treatment, no idea if the treatment would actually make a difference, and no way to manage the treatment to adjust it if it turns out to be flawed. They also will not agree on what the end result of the disease is, and when it will become critical. Some significant precentage will tell you that its already too late. They will all agree that we have to do something, because that has to be better than doing nothing.

Personally, I believe that we have the disease that the 98 doctors have said we have, and that no treatment option given is better than just living with the disease, and many options proposed are far worse. This disease won't kill us, but in 300 years, it will make the average persons life very different. But I also suspect that the average persons life will be very different in 300 years, with or without treatment.

Comment Wouldn't it be nice.... (Score 1) 545

if the judge were to set precedent by deciding that RIAA was right, but that statutory damages should be in the order of 1 penny per infraction, or 0.1 cent, or 0.01 cents per. It would probably still fulfill their goal of bankrupting limewire, and make future lawsuits for infringement far more interesting....

Comment Re:Birth Control (Score 1) 477

Harumph. I've essentially deprived myself of it from puberty to the time I could afford to raise children, and from the time I had the last child I wanted to now.

No great yearning or obsession. The thought of contraceptive failure and an unwanted child have a big chilling effect.

See, I never bought into the bullshit that its necessary for my survival or well-being. And, guess what? It isn't!

Another kid would sure be a damper, though. And, with me being 48, not fair to the kid.

Sex keeps people in abusive relationships, leads to unwanted children, makes one initially be in a "lovestruck fog" with someone new. No, thank you.

Surely a rational person can censor their impulses, no? That's what distinguishes us. There are plenty of people I think should be killed (liberals, mostly, but I digress). I don't go around killing them. A new car would be nice, and I could steal one, but I don't. Rich food tastes good, but a rational person does not overindulge. Sex might feel good, but it requires all these less than perfect mechanisms to avoid its natural consequences.

Crap, few things disgust me more than people living in inner-city squalor who can not support the families they already have, and continuing to breed, producing more children in misery. They lack self-control and do not strike me as human in the rational sense.

My opinions might be different if contracts to abort were legally enforceable, in the event of contraceptive failure, but they aren't.

As for "not normal", I think 99% of the population are little more than sheeple driven by what's pleasant in "the now", rather than using their brains to consider consequences.

The best ways to understand my views is to look at them from the perspective of asceticism: voluntary self-deprivation of comforts to build strength of will and remove the shackles of attraction to the unhealthy. Different ascetics deprive themselves of different things. Crap, if I did not like good food, comfortable surroundings, and technology, I'd likely be a Buddhist monk, though I am actually agnostic.

Comment Re:The next line states... (Score 1) 360

When the summary says:

People who spend a lot of time surfing the internet are more likely to show signs of depression

it suggests causation

Only if you think correlation suggests causation.

They took a group of people who spend a lot of time surfing the internet. They took a control group who didn’t. The group who spent a lot of time surfing the internet was also more likely to show signs of depression. They showed correlation. You are the one who assumed it was a causative relationship.

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