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Comment Re:You have no rights when applying for entry to a (Score 1) 207

I had a 5 hour layover at Shanghai (PVG) last month. No visa of any sort required to move around the international terminal of the airport. Of course I'm pretty certain they would not have let me leave the airport - but definitely no transit visa involved just to change planes.

Comment another blow against freedom (Score 1) 110

The US Gubmint, striking yet another blow against internet freedom! Listen and hear, you poor and you workers of the world - you will NOT have access to the same cultural data as your betters, and Soviet America will use the violent coercive power of the imperial state to make sure of it.

Comment Security (Score 2) 366

Elephant in the room that the advocates of self-driving cars don't want to discuss, and won't admit is a serious risk: security. Sure, you can claim all day long that these self-driving cars and their control systems will be "uber secure". But hey, in other recent news some folks are selling software they exfiltrated from the NSA. So I'm pretty sure if someone can crack them, then someone can crack Uber.

Thing is, all it takes is one compromise to wreak carnage on an absolutely catastrophic scale.

Imagine a near future with a few million autonomous Uber vehicles deployed and active. One malicious hacker cracks into the system. His motivations don't matter. Hacker sez to the cars: "Attention all self-driving Ubers! Turn hard left now and accelerate to maximum speed." That's all it takes, man, all it takes. I hope that doesn't happen, but I fear it will. Maybe then people will understand the risks they're playing with.

Comment Re:Bullshit (Score 1) 366

I addressed bidets specifically as not being a point of successful automation because you still have to wipe afterward.

Have you not tried the Toto Washlet with built-in blow dryer? Truly a superior post-pooping experience. (There may be other models/brands that are even better, this is just a well-known example.)

Comment Re:I wonder... (Score 1) 366

There is nothing fair in knowingly taking money with a promise to pay it back and then deciding that it isn't important to actually pay it back.

You are reasoning like they took a loan from a human person. They did not. They took a loan from a financial institution. The financial institution created the money from thin air (of course it's actually much more complicated in detail, but that's basically the truth from a distance). Apologists for financial institutions often claim their usurious profits are justified by the "risk" of default they take on when making a loan. Well, this is the "risk" come home to roost.

Comment Re: More proof (Score 1) 414

Yeah, honestly I've never heard anything remotely like that in real life. I guess we've had different experiences.

Most of the expressed racism I've personally heard has been based on fear of violent crime or economic insecurity. I think that kind of racism comes from segregation and precarity. And it certainly can be addressed with calm discussion.

Of course there's also the now-popular "hate whitey" meme that's being pushed real hard by the capitalist propaganda organs. But that's a different variant of bigotry best left to a different conversation.

Comment Re: More proof (Score 2) 414

It's 1967, and a bunch of people don't want equal rights for black people; some of them even want to bring back lynchings, and they all want to deny them voting rights, the right to sit anywhere on the bus, the right to use the same drinking fountains and bathrooms, etc.

Are you seriously going to tell me that it's "puerile" to dismiss these people as "assholes"? That we should have a rational discussion with them?

Correct, it would be puerile to dismiss those folks as "assholes". Many of them were doubtless fairly pleasant people in their daily lives. (I am not one of those people who thinks almost everyone is a douchebag.)

The right word for the group you describe would be "racists". And yes, calm and rational discussion can be an effective way to deal with individual racists. That kind of racist is not very common anymore, but I've encountered a few. Know what in my experience reliably makes them stop and reconsider? If they're denouncing $RACE, just say to them calmly: "You know, I've met quite a few nice/smart/etc $RACE people. Have you really never met at nice $RACE person?" Maybe that sounds too simple, but it does seem to work.

Somehow I bet that shouting "FUCK YOU, YOU FUCKING ASSHOLE!!!!11!!!1!" would not work quite so well.

Otoh, if you're thinking about the macropolitical picture in the 1960s US, don't overlook the armed proto-insurgency of the Black Panthers & friends. Mao was pretty spot-on about where political power comes from.

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The most difficult thing in the world is to know how to do a thing and to watch someone else doing it wrong, without commenting. -- T.H. White