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Comment Re:My public school system is great (Score 1) 379

Prop 13 effectively shrinks the budget by 2% per year while the price of goods and services (nationally) grows by 4%. Over five years it's fairly minimal, but in the last 10 years alone the population has increased by over 10% while the tax base has moved by less than 5%. You can either cut services to that remaining 5% or degrade services to everyone, or dip in to debt, but how are you going to pay off a permanent 5% deficit? And it will just continue to grow as population continues to boom and taxes keep being reduced against inflation. It's totally, completely unsustainable for another 40 years.

Comment Re:Fewer children per capita? (Score 2) 379

It's very common for people working in the global economy (in this case, the tech portion) to want to live in urban areas. Silicon Valley is a great place to raise a family, the ultimate string of bedroom communities flanked by other bedroom communities. But people ages 25-35 really want to live in urban areas, and besides Seattle, San Francisco is the only place on the US west coast that has that combination of high density and high paying jobs to lure them there. The dating scene in Silicon Valley is sad at best which pushes a lot of singles in to the city.
 
I don't feel like posting a second time in this thread so I'll say it here, as someone who hasn't started a family yet, I love the city, but once we have children and they're big enough to need their own space, we're going to have to move out of the city. We both have really fantastic jobs, but can only afford a 1 bedroom here, a two or even three bedroom apartment would bankrupt us. Adding a 30 minute commute each way moves us from a 1 bedroom apartment to a 3 or even 4 bedroom house with some semblance of a backyard. I just got back from a ski trip with six other couples, those who still lived in the city and had one child (under 2 years) were looking to move out, the rest already had children and had moved out of the city, or had already fled the city to find housing where they could comfortably raise a family. We're not talking about junior level developers, these were all people in their early to mid 30s, comfortably midway through their careers with household incomes in the $250,000 to $300,000 range. We all want to live here, but we can't find space in good neighborhoods, and we're all looking at ways to keep them out of the SF public school system. SF is on par with 2017 Manhattan prices, but on par with 1977 Manhattan crime and schools. San Francisco is a great place to live, but an awful one to raise a family in.

Comment Re:I've been saying for a long time about autonomu (Score 1) 94

About 40-60% of the Dallas Texas DART light rail system is above grade, except for where it's already on existing railroad grades, or the brief ~1 mile subway section under the dense suburban area just north of downtown. It works really well, there's almost 0 at grade crossings in the most densely populated areas.

Comment Bzzt, failed analysis on "free speech" (Score 3, Informative) 157

Seriously.

First, it's explicit in the Constitution that "Each House may determine the rules of its proceedings, punish its members for disorderly behavior, and, with the concurrence of two thirds, expel a member." Whatever rules a House likes for its proceedings are the rules, and whatever punishment it designates for violating them is the punishment. The case law on that goes on to state that this means that the courts may not hear a case on such matters; no Federal court has the authority to even hear a case on the rules, much less get to the point that it can rule whether something is free speech or not.

Second, the Speech or Debate Clause only protects members form being held responsible "in any other Place"; their own House is perfectly allowed to hold them responsible for what they say. In accordance with the previous bit.

Third, this isn't a law, it's a proposed rule of the House, in the decidedly non-public forum of the floor of the House. The First Amendment doesn't remotely apply, at all, either literally or in any of its court-extended meanings. Even if the courts were allowed to rule on the rule (see the first problem), current precedent would fall on the side of the rulemakers.

Comment Re:I've never been able to wrap my head around thi (Score 1) 313

I once bought a bus ticket from Iguazu, Brazil to Rio De Janiro for about $250, went to go see the falls that morning (they're amazing by the way, twice as wide and twice as high and twice as much water as Niagra falls), and the bus driver that takes us back in to town slept through lunch and I got back an hour later than I expected. Worse, I thought the bus started from the Argentinian side, so I had to get an international taxi for $80 to the bus terminal. Got my passport stamped sitting in the back of a ratty hundai taxi. Had they waited an extra 5 minutes to scrutinize my brazilian visa, I'd have been screwed and missed New Years in Rio.

Comment Re:I've never been able to wrap my head around thi (Score 1) 313

Another flight home from Cartagena, I was too hung over in the morning and nearly missed my flight home, but thank god, they held the flight for me by ~15 minutes as I didn't have any checked luggage and Spirit Airlines patiently waited for me to be expedited through security/customs.
 
Thursday, I nearly missed my flight from SFO to Dallas because I thought my flight was at 5:45 but really it was 5:25 and also I didn't count on SF traffic to the airport. Thanks to the miracle of online checkin I was able to make that flight.

Comment Re:I've never been able to wrap my head around thi (Score 1) 313

Here are some fun stories to grasp:
 
I missed my flight from Miami to Dallas in ~2005 because I missed the 45 minute checkin time by 2 minutes due to misreading the ticket.
 
On an international flight home from Colombia to the United States I missed my flight by ~7 hours because my ~6 hour bus ride from Medellin to Bogota was delayed by 15 hours due to a mudslide that blocked the highway.
 
More recently my flight got pushed back one day and screwed up my onward travel from London to Budapest, so I had to eat that ticket (rebook fee was higher than buying a new one),
 
Then my new ticket, I booked for the wrong time because Iceland is in a different time zone than England (apparently! don't try booking this shit jetlagged at 4am in the morning) and missed my flight because 90 minutes to get from London Gatwick to London Luton is just not enough and we forgot to checkin online.
 
So shit happens. Or your car gets a flat taking your friend on the way to the airport. Or your friend's wife goes in to labor a week early so you need to pet sit for the next 48 hours because they have no immediate family in town. Or your grandfather has a health problem and has to go to the hospital during thanksgiving, so you eat your $79 ticket home and just take the bus the next day for $50 instead.
 
There are a million, billion reasons not to catch your flight.
 
Oh, one time I missed my flight from Manila, Phillipines to the island of Palawan ($69) because I was just too hung over that morning, so I booked a second flight that afternoon instead (also $69). Whatever.

Comment Re:Too Many my A** (Score 1) 189

With the price of quality cameras and LED lamps coming down under $100 each, Final Cut Pro is $300 if you find some community college acting students you can put together a series you write yourself for under $10,000.
 
There's that show about couples that view three homes each and buy one at the end of the episode... how much could that possibly cost? Camera man, microphone guy, lighting guy, director and show host * 8 hours + equipment + van rental + gas. Probably the hotel bill is higher than the rest of their costs combined.
 
My friend was in an online soap opera for four "Seasons" of ten episodes each; I don't think she got paid much but the investment is low and if your series gets picked up the return is very high.
 
Netflix is great because you can just watch series that made it to season 3; typically if a series makes it to season 3 it's at least moderately worthwhile to watch.

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