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Comment Re:Thrill (Score 1) 400

In this same vein, none of these public options are attractive if I have to bring:
- support infrastructure for a small child
- support infrastructure for on call (I can leave the laptop in the trunk)
- gym clothes or work clothes

The same goes for taking items home. I can take home way more than I can carry in a moment if I have a car with me.

The private automobile (well mostly its trunk) gives me a small bit of somewhat secure, private storage space where I'm going. Plus the flexibility of controlling my environment (while inside it), leaving when I want to and going where I want to go (no matter how slowly).

These are significant advantages the car has over public transit that don't get wished away by ordering everything through UPS, adding more buses/trains, etc.

Comment Re:Fuck you, Cridland (Score 1) 207

It's not that you guys don't get piles of shit, it's that your piles of shit are smaller compared to everyone else.


How do you know? How many miles have you walked in my shoes? If you did walk in my shoes you might find my burden unbelievably light, or unbearably heavy. Yet you would still not know how heavy it is to me.

Like many, I have been taught and trained to carry my burdens with equanimity. Thus those burdens appear small to you. You will never know how great they are to me.

I will not prostitute those burdens to pay for the right to speak, and I will not trade your pity for a job, a raise, or a house.

Comment Re:But... (Score 4, Insightful) 490

Your guns are going to mean precious little in a few years. Ask any Afghan. Almost everyone has an AK-47. Predator drones don't care. It will be the same here in the good old US of A. Drones will be used in police actions internally in the US because they are cheaper to replace & train than en-vivo police officers.

Today, arming the population, means teaching them math, science, technical skills, and the civics to know when to put them to use against the government of the day.

Comment Re:Death sentence (Score 2) 255

Most drivers in NYC don't own their medallions. They rent them from the actual owners.

That introduces a whole new dynamic into the taxi market, as now the artificial restriction of supply maintains a commensurately high value for the medallions. In that circumstance, the taxi commission ends up having the 'job' of maintaining the value of medallions.

This is not intentional of course, rather the natural consequence of monied individuals leaning on elected and appointed officials to protect their interest. In this circumstance, one can expect the public safety arguments to be used as a bludgeon.

However that doesn't make those arguments invalid. There are many people desperate enough drive uninsured, unsafe vehicles, or to put of maintenance because of cash flow issues.

Comment Really? (Score 2) 341

Its news that human beings are self interested, ignorant, and vain? How did this ingenue become secretary of defense?

Here's a news flash for Bob Gates: People in Washington, running the gov. are no better/worse than the general populace. People don't suddenly become 'better' because they get elected to office, or go work for a congressman, or the white house. When you take the job of Secretary of Defense, you get paid for three things:
1. Up holding your duty to the constitution
2. Setting an example for your subordinates
3. Navigating the politics of government

If you don't want to compromise yourself, these things are all thankless arduous tasks. They wear you out. It goes with the territory. Cry me a river Bob Gates.

Comment Like Radio? (Score 3, Insightful) 406

In Rowanda the slaughter was committed using nothing more than machetes. However the people where whipped into a fervor by people on the radio inciting to violence. Marconi should have seen it coming. He had a responsibility.

More seriously, to paraphrase stephenson and others. human beings are at the top of the food chain because we are the most effective and fearsome killing machines currently known. We will find new ways to kill things, and each other regardless of the intended purpose of a tool, and how many safe guards are built into it. It is what we do and why we are where we are.

Comment Sic Transit Pink Floyd (Score 1) 392

I guess I won't be able to listen to "The Wall" again.

How long before the whole album gets censored because of the lyrics of In The Flesh...

Are there any queers in the theater tonight?
Get them up against the wall!
There's one in the spotlight, he don't look right to me,
Get him up against the wall!
That one looks Jewish!
And that one's a coon!
Who let all of this riff-raff into the room?
There's one smoking a joint,
And another with spots!
If I had my way,
I'd have all of you shot!

But hey, I guess if they can ban huckfin for the use of the N word... this one is a no-brainer

Comment Oh boy.... (Score 1) 947

If you live or work in SF you don't ever, ever, ever question bicyclist or bicycling. Those people will fuck you up. (People at work speak in hushed tones when complaining about bikes for fear of reprisals)

Of course they won't stop at red light, or stop signs, or cross walks; make up traffic law as they go along, and think that self righteousness will save them when they interface with a ton of moving steel (or with a person [1]). And that is when they're not riding on the sidewalks (even when a dedicated, fenced off, bike lane is _right_ there!).

Bicyclists: you move to fast and too unpredictably for me as a driver or pedestrian to keep us both safe. This only gets worse because every bicyclist seems to decide on the fly if in a given context they want to behave as a vehicle, or pedestrian.

If you are one of those few bicyclists who actually stop at a stop sign (say at 5th and brannan) then thank you... please remind your brothers and sisters that traffic laws help the rest of us keep them safe.


[1] Hi Chris Bucchere

Comment Re:Well That Was a Depressing Read (Score 1) 388

As an atheist, you embarrass me.

Inherently, science and religion are human endeavors, and tied into the evolution of human societies, the pursuit of power and so on. Given that, for a long time Men of God were the only ones with education, and with free time, it stands to reason that they would contribute to science. Remember, that they had power based on knowing things that were hidden from the rest of the populace. To deny, that for a long time, the clergy _were_ the scientists is risible, as is the discounting of their contributions.

Dr. Bakker's essay is a direct response to people like you... it is practically showing the contributions of people of faith to science. But you are too blinded by your hatred to see it.

Comment Re:Three T's my ass (Score 2) 157

Talk about the banality of evil.

Your censor, the police officer beating the crap out of you, the intelligence officer who orders your arrest, they're just doing their jobs. They're not evil. They're just doing a job. They're nice people really. If you're nice to them, maybe you'll change them.

Lets not even start talking about the blatant racism behind: 'Chinese up and English down'.

We in the 'west' have a lot of recent experience with this sort of thing, and experience has shown the consequences of that behavior. I promise you every argument trotted out by the communist party in china was trotted out by some tinpot soviet puppet, if not the soviets themselves. (or south american, or african, or wherever dictator). In the same way, you can replace White/Aryan with Chinese and get all the crap about up with China down with everyone else. We've seen it all, heard all the arguments, seen the results and come to the conclusion that the behavior is unacceptable.

We don't always live up to our ideals,real politic gets in the way, and we screwup - a lot. But those are the facts, and that what we try to stand for. China is not special, just another country where all the old tropes are trotted out to try to maintain power.

Comment I would gladly pay the BBC licensing fee (Score 1) 373

I would gladly pay the BBC so that I could watch (online, without cuts, delays, etc):

BBC soccer coverage (especially the world cup).
Have I got news for you.
The BBC's 24 hour news channel

The BBC is _exactly_ why I pay for XM. (That, and I just could not handle the drivel that passes for 'Fresh Air' on the drive home).

Comment Re:So that's really why he gave up his citizenship (Score 1) 445

In Canada you file to become a 'deemed non-resident' at which point, if the country in which you are living has a tax treaty with Canada they claim to work it out behind the scenes. It used to be that you had to file every year, but they got rid of that a long time ago, as it was just paper work. Once you became a 'deemed non-resident' they kept that status.

In order to become a 'deemed non-resident' you have to show that you severed major financial ties with Canada. For example, you can't own and rent out a home. If you do your world income becomes eligible for taxation.

(I could go on, but its been a while since I looked at this, and I'd hate to sound to informative).

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