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Comment Re:Taxing / Censorship (Score 1) 338

Taxation is a fact of life. No civilization could exist without it.

Is there are a Libertarian that has ever demonstrated any knowledge of history or economics?

While I am decidedly not a Libertarian, I'd like to point out that the only US presidential candidate that I saw point out this problem in a debate was Gary Johnson:

Johnson: Well, what I want people to understand is that we’re restricting jobs, that the more you raise the minimum wage, the more and more automation occurs. I mean, you force the marketplace into automation, do you know what’s going to be one of the biggest disrupters here very shortly is the fact that the number one occupation in the United States is driver.

And because we’re going to have automated driving, trucks, taxis, I will tell you, this is gonna be a gigantic disrupter moving forward. And fast food? That is also going to be subject to automation in a really big way, so these are issues. These are big issues.

Comment Re:More political FUD from the new world order (Score 1) 87

Also, the driving standards here are terrible as are the roads, and there's a lot of old cars still in use with the average age of cars being 14+ years meaning they lack a lot of the modern safety features and given that's an average, there are plenty of cars that are 30+ years old still running around. We have a very high accident rate and many deaths on the roads as a result of poor driving and old vehicles.

While visiting the South Island a few years back, I heard from a cop that a big problem with driving down there is tourists. Specifically, people who fly in from mainland China on cheap flights that arrive late at night. They then get into a car with no sleep and drive several more hours to their hotel, often forgetting what side of the road they are supposed to be on. Bad Things often ensue.

Comment Re:Great, but I wonder what the catch is? (Score 1) 68

However the modern version always seems to have some catch

Welcome to the "neoliberalist" groupthink, a cancer which started in the 70ies and is culminating these days in blights like anorectic states, austerity, "free" trade agreements carefully engineered to fuck over the poor, mass migrations, and lastly, a Renaissance of fascism's ugly face.

(No, liberal not in the sense which is common in the USA, which means "liberty for people", but more in this "neo", which means "liberty for money").

Oddly enough, this started in part as a reaction to Watergate.

Comment Re:This story sponsored by (Score 1) 99

Well, the answer might be to try a morning cup of decaf coffee. Why? Because caffeine isn't the only active ingredient in coffee; the anti-cancer properties of coffee appear to be in the phenols which are still present in decaf. And you'd still get the stimulant benefits of caffeine because you're more sensitive, although I'd avoid even decaf after noon.

A cup of decaf coffee has between 2-10 mg of caffeine depending on the process; an ounce of dark chocolate has about 20 mg of caffeine; a twelve once coke has 34 mg of caffeine; a cup of regular coffee has 90-200 mg of caffeine.

Thanks - I was wondering about the non-caffeine ingredients. My dark chocolate intake is about .75oz/day (and I can definitely feel it) Maybe I'll try a cup of decaf on a weekend morning some time.

I'm also concerned about who defines "decaf" - especially here in Seattle, the capital of caffeine abuse ;-)

Comment Re:This story sponsored by (Score 1) 99

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.

FWIW, I'm in one such population: Even relatively low levels of caffeine (or other stimulants) can trigger anxiety attacks. 6oz of Coke will keep me up 18 hours later. Which sucks in our high-stress world. I have to use a small number of squares of (good) dark chocolate to keep the dosage manageable.

Comment Re:Monogamy not that old (Score 1) 279

From what I remember of the myths, they really protected their wives.

I grant that thousands of years later they could be viewed by modern framing though.

I seem to remember a women kept in a pit so no one could fuck her for example.

Indeed. The Iliad is basically the story of how the entire Hellenic civilization sacked a city for violating one woman.

Comment Re:Insane prices (Score 1) 196

If we go for wind capacity per capita

Except that the GP wasn't talking about that:

Offshore wind farms in the U.S. are complicated by geography

They were simply pointing out that TFA was about offshore and there is a reason that the US doesn't have a lot of offshore. A reason that was new to me BTW, and I agree with the Informative mods.

Comment Re:Karma (Score 1) 393

Most other developed nations that utilize a lot of desalination (Saudi Arabia, Israel, UAE, etc.) actually pay less than 1/3rd per liter for desalinated water than we pay for water in Ventura County. If we could desalinate our water, we should be able to - theoretically - slash our water costs by a factor of 3...

Saudi Arabia's desalination plants are fueled by cheap domestic carbon fuels (almost all of their grid is power by either oil or NG). So don't expect the costs to transfer - or even be a desirable way to deal with the problem given its cause.

Comment Re:Did renewables replace any carbon based plants? (Score 1) 340

Until renewables become far cheaper, generate more kWh per square-foot, and solve the storage problem - they will never reduce or replace carbon based generation.

Did you include in the externalised costs?

If we include the coal externalities, it increases the levelized costs to approximately 28 cents per kWh, which is more than hydroelectric, wind (onshore and offshore), geothermal, biomass, nuclear, natural gas, solar photovoltaic, and on par with solar thermal (whose costs are falling rapidly).

I have some sympathy for the density argument, but I hope we can agree that using more land (or building nukes) is mostly a political choice, not a technical barrier.

Comment Re:Coal's not cheap (Score 1) 340

Fossil fuel tax breaks? And access to public lands that they have to pay for? Where oh where do those windmills and solar plants go?

On domestic land. Unlike the oil being pumped out of the ground in the ME that requires wars, half our carrier fleet and the blood of our soldiers and their civilians. Not to mention the short term price spikes the wars cause when they reduce supply (HT to a comment above).

Comment Re:empty waste land not equal to best location (Score 1) 159

But like the /. story about Kuwait a week ago: I can't grasp that the wealthy and powerful in such countries are to dumb to do anything with their wealth and power.

I can. I went to school with a bunch of them, and some of them are - to put it delicately - dumber than a bag of hammers.

Comment Re:Ah yes.. (Score 1) 195

This is already done for CO2 purification plants. Where do you think the CO2 for dry ice, carbonation, flash-freezing, etc. comes from? And don't forget that CO2 (that evil gas that's supposedly killing the planet) only makes up 0.04% of the atmosphere.

And the LD50 of Hydrogen Cyanide (another metabolic by-product) is also about 300ppm (0.03%). I'm sure you would have no problem breathing it. In fact, why don't you do so and leave the science to the grown ups?

Comment Re:Those Damn Blue LEDs (Score 1) 230

Actually, when they first came out, they were used because they were 'cool' and 'new'. We were all quite used to seeing red, yellow, and green LEDs for many years. Blue was just different and very bright in comparison.

The one place it really made sense was the locator light on servers. It was fairly easy to find the box with the blue light turned on.

Blue was also needed to make full colour images like in LED TVs. That was the application I remember generating all the excitement.

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