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Comment Re:defense versus health and human services. (Score 1) 231

The only problem (compared to other countries) with US healthcare is its outrageous cost. There is zero evidence that healthcare quality is to blame for the slightly lower life expectancy.

I only have a few anecdotal stories to go by, but I know at least one with back problems and one with heart problems stuck where they got on-and-off health problems that lead to problems paying insurance that lead to the being effectively outside the system and any insurance that will take them on now excludes everything related to the their pre-existing condition. All they get is emergency care, when they should have had surgery. So I definitively think distribution of care is still some part of the lower life expectancy, those with lots of money get overtreated leading to good quality at excessive cost but those with no money get undertreated too.

Comment Re:For the love of God no (Score 2) 64

Let's be honest, what's really killing you is the lack of social antennas. I've been next to a baby that was on full wailing for quite some time, despite the mother's best efforts and that was considerably worse than any idiot yapping on the phone. Didn't really want to make me throw myself or the baby off the plane, but I was quite happy I didn't have to deal with that every other hour of the day. Most people keep it short, most people keep a normal conversation volume and most of those who don't will take a hint.

And a few are the kind you want to strangle. But long before the flight was up I'd make a really loud "call" like "YES HELLO... OVER THE ATLANTIC NOW, DOING FINE. EXCEPT THERE'S THIS GUY WHO KEEPS TALKING REALLY, REALLY LOUND ON HIS CELL PHONE FOR AGES NOW, DOESN'T HAVE ANY SOCIAL ANTENNAS AT ALL. I HOPE HE HANGS UP SOON. SEE YOU SOON, LOVE YA" Fighting fire with fire usually works, if he goes psycho with luck they'll cuff him and throw him off the plane. Win-win either way.

Comment I may be old, but... (Score 3, Funny) 56

At least my Lincoln Logs never spied on me.

And I'm so old that when I was five and told my dad I wanted Lincoln Logs for Christmas, he handed me a hand axe, a piece of flint and some beef jerky and dropped me off in the woods. I was out there in my little jammies in the middle of December and let me tell you, it got so cold I had to kill a deer and crawl inside to keep from freezing to death. It was like something out of The Revenant.

Yeah, I had a rough childhood, let me tell you.

Comment Re:AI will replace your children (Score 2, Funny) 56

AI will replace your children

At least the AI won't bring some fruity hipster with a man-bun over to the house for Thanksgiving like my daughter recently did. I mean, he was a nice enough guy and all, but he seemed a little low-T if you catch my drift. I tried to get him to watch football or go out back and play mumblety-peg or strip down to our briefs and try out some wrestling moves, but he demurred. He also wouldn't eat any of the turducken, saying that he was some kind of vegan or something. I mean, what the fuck is that all about? When I was his age, I lived on raw hamburger and Skoal Long Cut.

I guess my dream of my daughter marrying a first-round draft pick out of Alabama or something is just about gone. Well, it is what it is. Kid's will break your goddamn heart. you know?

Comment Re: Better be ready to be beat up when layed off w (Score 1) 531

So then you are looking at specialized equipment thinking it can replace a human at a generic job? I think you are doing a couple of things wring here: underestimating our desire to build generic robots while overestimating capacity of specialized equipment to replace people at generic jobs within newer companies that don't have the capital to acquire or build very specialized equipment. In either case I think my points still stand, if the equipment is too specialized and expensive, humans can compete if they can provide quality, if the equipment is so general purpose and ubiquitous that anybody can afford it with a few months of pay, then people would be acquiring it to rent it out to businesses or to do jobs just like the owner operator truck drivers of today.

As to taxes and regulations, obviously they are making human labour less competitive compared to capital, is this even a question? A robot will not sue the company for 'wrongful termination' or for 'sexual harassment' or anything else for that matter (regardless of the merits). Regardless of what /. says, robots will not form unions,there will be no mandate for payroll tax or minimum wage or medical insurance, etc. These are government inventions that make people uncompetitive against labour.

Comment Re:Google, Motorola, Intel . . . (Score 3, Interesting) 220

Kansas, BTW, is firmly middle of the pack on both measures. Kansas is #25 of 50 in terms of GDP per capita, and according to the Mercatus rankings, they're #27. So Kansas isn't a perfect example.

Kansas is a perfect example. Forget GSP (the state version of GDP) and Mercatus. Look at the trendlines. Since they've had this experiment in extreme trickle-down economics, they're rapidly heading into the shitter.

http://www.bls.gov/eag/eag.ks....

http://www.kansascity.com/opin...

Comment Re:Google, Motorola, Intel . . . (Score 4, Insightful) 220

Or Texas which has been doing better than California for the last twenty years.

I'm living in Houston now, so I can have an opinion on the "Texas miracle".

It's horseshit. First, Texas is not "doing better than California". Second, one of the ways Texas has attracted businesses and jobs is by deregulating and lowering taxes. But see, those chickens are starting to come home to roost. The real economic engine of Texas is the Houston/Gulf Coast area which had a big boom when gas was $4/gallon. At $1.85 (which is what I paid to fill up earlier tonight), there are a lot of oil folks out of work, which is hurting everything from trucking to local businesses like restaurants, drug stores, groceries, etc. The big boom in Houston now (and the reason that Houston is still the economic driver for all of Texas), is health care. We have the best medical centers and medical schools around and are building more. And even though Texas is a low-tax state, the state makes up for it by loading up its citizens with fees and licenses and surcharges galore.

By the way, Houston is a liberal city. Blue as blue can be. It's got more in common with Austin and San Antonio than it does in more backward places like Dallas-Ft Worth or the panhandle. Hell, until recently, the mayor of Houston was a lesbian. Think about that. A lesbian mayor in Texas. Up in Dallas, they'd force her into a re-education camp and treat her with electric shock and the Bible.

Without Houston, Texas would be sucking as bad as Kansas, which has the worst economic trend in the United States thanks to one-party Republican control of Kansas state government.

Comment I hope AI can make coding redundant (Score 1) 74

We should hope that AI can learn to code and do it well enough that I could converse with it in a human language, define the problem as I see it and it would immediately (it would be immediate, right) give me a number of ready solutions to pick from. The amount of new product development that could take place would be staggering, we could quickly realise any idea, I hope that the AI would be good enough at that point to do user support and maintenance for the selected solution.

You, guys, are basically looking at it all wrong. Why shouldn't we desire to have systems at our disposal that would be good enough to create software (and at some point hardware) that we could 'program' by explaining high level requirements to a machine? The machine would have to ask more questions, the testing would reveal problems, the machine could do support and maintenance. I see this as a huge net positive, not as something that would hurt us but as something that would save us from decades of sitting on ass, getting less and less active over time, going blind from the screen... And we could never achieve everything we needed anyway at the speed of a human coder.

Comment Re:Apple PAYS for your SS, Medicare, Welfare and W (Score 1) 220

No, US bonds are the definition of ponzi scam that even Madoff would be awed by. U S A cannot return the borrowed VALUE of the money, that is what the Fed and the rest of the central banks are involved in, global inflation, writing off the debt without admitting the technicality of the default. The actual USA debt is all of the federal, state, municipal, corporate and personal borrowing that exceeds 221 trillion dollars and cannot be repaid under any circumstances.

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