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Comment Re:Err, guys? (Score 1) 644

Some quick counter-arguments:

- Historically, on every jump you mention people moved from BASIC jobs to more COMPLEX jobs that society as a whole could not even afford before (entertainment for instance). That is farming to industry to services to information... etc. We are in essence escaping from the things machines can do better than US. Machines are getting better faster than humans and will surpass our ability to do ANYTHING. Whenever that happens there would be nowhere to jump to.
- Even in an optimistic scenario, transition will be painful. We should not make policy based on the fact that things could become stable eventually.
- You forget that while this process goes along, the rich will continue to gather more wealth. As in, the real estate that is NOT being automated.
- In history, as in investments, past performance is no future guarantee. What happened before tells you for sure that something can happen again. Check the logic. It does not necessarily predict what will happen. As you might have noticed, history has been full of surprises, and we are indeed in the frontier of very disruptive technology.

The important thing is this: do we want to be prepared for the possible changes or just go blindly ahead believing we are safe. Hint: our choice is not going well for global warming at least.

Comment Re:Duh... (Score 1) 109

People voluntarily taking a risk with their own money with the hopes of a return is the definition of "the market".

That is 'a' (rather than 'the') definition for market. It is extremely common nevertheless to expected the return for an investment to be monetary profit, not whatever you get in return. Else even NGOs and other non for profit institutions would qualify as "the market". So I'm ok with my use of "market" if most people get my meaning, which is the entire point of language and definitions IMHO.

Comment Re:Duh... (Score 4, Insightful) 109

Except that crowfunding has never been an "investment". You get no shares, you get no money back (certainly not more money that you put in) and the risk would be ridiculously high. It has always been about trowing a piece of disposable income for a nice idea that you would love to see realized, in the off chance it happens. ESPECIALLY if the market would never attempt such a thing. Neither the people with the dreams, nor the people that indulge in patronage deserve to be called fools.

Comment Re:I signed up (Score 1) 465

I admire your courage and determination, seriously.

Sadly, the truth is that with lack of education and refined propaganda machinery it is not hard to buy vote with money. The problem with democracy is that it puts power in the hands of people, which have little chance to wield it in coordination. An informed vote is hard, almost impossible, since the complexity of society and politics is huge, the number of players huge and any individual's time to catch up and remember history very limited.

And that, without even going into the fact that there is an entire machinery to define the candidates before you get to use the vote you value so much.

So the odds are not in your favor, my friend. That said, I agree that stoping to exercise whatever power you yield, no matter how small, is to give up all power entirely. So keep voting, and, IMHO, vote for the bottom-feeders and shake the status-quo. Even a non-winning candidate that does well can gather publicity and influence that then has a chance to grow over time.

Comment Re:After you win Monopoly, you play Risk. (Score 1) 1216

Your vision is too narrow. You mention the dollar as something American will be able to move completely away from if they wanted. This is false. No matter what you call the circulating currency, at the end of the day the rich hold a vast proportion of practical wealth, even more unequal than income. I'm talking houses, land, transportation, farms, infrastructure, mining, etc. All enforced by police and army in established political and geographical boundaries.. Change your money into another denomination all you want, you are most definitely still playing the game. Want out? You can go trade with other people on deep international waters or in space...

Comment Re:Logic! (Score 1) 776

and this chart shows how what was released from Chernobyl compares to all coal and nuclear emissions ever combined.

Just need to point out that it does not. Especially since it only includes things like the effect to a single person, for very narrow times/events. This chart, while amazing, is not comparing total levels of anything!

Comment Re: Does It Matter If Companies Are Tracking Us ? (Score 4, Insightful) 166

This also already happens. I'm right now paying the price of deciding to avoid credit and use my own money to live. Turns out the system really wants you to borrow, and through the beauty of credit scores, all manner of daily things become a hassle or downright impossible unless you play along. The tracking of info might appear harmless... till companies and people rely on it and require it. Then your choice is between sheeple or outcast.

Comment Re:A great deal of mass is devoted to driver safet (Score 1) 369

Your problem is not too hard to solve, and the fact that a car is your current solution does not mean the only solution. You can replace a whole parking lot with a few lockers. Also, parking is another reason for using these cars as taxis. Not only you avoid it, but also the same car can go serve another customer. Mass adoption would mean a hugely reduced motor pool (and all those benefits).

Comment Re:doesn't help people take games seriously either (Score 1) 737

In my case, knowing and understanding the pain my wife would feel if I betray her is what keeps me in check. I don't thing that falls into "political correctness". That said, I definitely enjoy seeing sensual, beautiful women, without the need to act on it. Sometimes I even comment on a girl I see on the street with my wife present. It is not "a way to cope" or "a release mechanism", it is just a free, casual and harmless passtime, same as I like ice cream for instance. IMHO, this whole sexism thing is often blown out of all proportion.

Comment Re:Try to avoid 9 billion (Score 1) 293

Sure, but the US is not the place to look at for contraception efficiency. It is cheap by US standards and pretty much available, so I'm not surprised things stabilized. It plays a much higher role on Africa and Asia, were woman still have an average of 5.1 kids, which can be reduced to sustainable 2 yet.

Comment Re:I don't know who is more useless... (Score 1) 293

I appreciate the optimism, but I find the idea of "we will be cause we need to" to be extremely naive. It ignores a history full of fallen civilizations and makes broad future predictions with no evidence whatsoever. Also, it seems to calm any worries without involving any particular push to action nor plan to follow. Mankind's epitaph could well be "they did what they needed to survive, till they failed".

On the other hand the idea of reducing population seem very sound. It involves practical plans with some evidence of good results (, and I don't know anyone that actually proposes to kill people (yes, China used draconian measures but that does not mean other options are not possible). If we added BILLIONS of people over 50 years (say, from 3bn in 1960 to 7bn in 2012) thinking of reversing the trend in another 50 doesn't seem to me the aberration you seem to believe. Overall, it makes the statement that many of our current, social, economical and environmental problems seem to come from too many wanting to consume more, so reducing the number of people that needs to be supported helps diminish said problems. Also, reducing serious organizations (like the UN and serious people to "these naysayers" hardly gets us to a better understanding.

With all due respect, I consider the fact that you were modded insightful kind of dangerous.

Comment Re:Modern Jesus (Score 1) 860

I would argue the opposite: federal power is a symptom, not the disease. There is so much federal power precisely because we are willing to sell it for money. Until money is not taken away to avoid making politics a market, this will not change.

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