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Comment On an unrelated note, I am God (Score 0, Troll) 745

You may or may not agree with me, but since I am God, I am always correct and wise beyond your comprehension. You may not question me lest you run the risk of being turned into salt.

Okay. So the SCOTUS decided that it is OK to keep someone locked up beyond their sentence term because of what they MIGHT do? This isn't too far removed from rounding up all people on parole and sticking them back in prison because they MIGHT do something bad. This isn't too far removed from putting people who fit into a particularly risky demographic into prison because of what they MIGHT do.

The justice system that was created in the U.S. was created the way it was largely to remove itself from the ridiculous crap that exists in the British system... and now we're becoming just like them or worse. We shouldn't jail people because of what they might do. That is a slippery slope we don't want to slide down.

Comment Re:iPad is not a PC - Where is my Prius SDK? (Score 1) 610

That's a great summary of the situation. And in my view that's exactly what makes the difference between the iPad/iPhone and any more regular computing system like a PC, Linux or Mac box.

And cars can be chipped. And iPhones can be jailbroken. Jailbreaking an iPhone is so simple today that anyone could do it*, instead we complain that the system is too closed. By the way, some developers that were refused by Apple's store turn to Cydia instead. Cydia is an alternative appstore for jailbroken phones were you can get both free and commercial apps too.

My iPhone is indeed jailbroken. Not to install pirated software or to make it simlock free, instead I did it to overcome some major annoyances such as the lack of an easy switch to turn that annoying auto-rotation off. I can now internet laying on my side in bed. :-) SBSettings is a blessing. Maybe Apple should "invent" that too ;-)

*but if you are so "adventurous" to install ssh please change both passwords (root & mobile)!

Comment Re:It's odd... (Score 1) 698

Certain words have crept into vocabulary and are now used to the exclusion of other words. It seems young folks are unable, now, to express themselves without swear words. It seems that they are completely unaware that there are actual words that actually MEAN what they are trying to say; but since they don't know them, they attach the same word that everyone else attaches for emphasis. So we end up with sentences that include the same word, for emphasis, three times... when all they really mean to say is "I was astounded."

To me, people who use swear words for pretty much everything sound uneducated and ... well, the follow-the-crowd type... someone who is clearly influenced, in the way they talk, by whoever is around them at the time.

Rather true. The power of swear words is precisely in their taboo nature. To use them regularly makes you look vulgar (aka, of the common people). It also removes their power. This is true of things like "God" and having talk of Christianity flooded everywhere, but that's another discussion. Yes, it would be preferable if people strove to learn new and creative ways to express amazement and offensiveness with either the words that already exist or, if necessary (not likely), with new words instead of simply co-opting existing words.

It's also interesting to me that people argue that words have no meaning out of context, etc., and typically argue that with someone who is offended by that kind of speech... and yet, then they use those same words specifically to offend or be abrasive. That's not out-of-context, that is a very specific context. If you are using a word specifically to offend me while claiming I shouldn't be offended because it's out of context, you're being rather rude.

I think the point was, being offended to the point that you'd actually seek to have the word legally banned is out of proportion to what the situation calls for. Being offended is a fact of life. Striving to ban "bad" words doesn't change the ability to offend because, as you note, the words chosen are being chosen specifically to offend. The words are a symptom, not the disease. I don't think there's a real cure for the disease, as at times there is reason to be offended with others or the general facts of reality. The only thing that can be done is to try to comfort those when they are in pain, when applicable.

I personally dislike swearing. I find it ... well, vulgar and uneducated :) Here's my actual "political" response though: as long as I am not allowed to use certain terms for people because it's "politically incorrect" or "offensive" to them, etc - for example, "black" or "gay" or perhaps saying that some act or sexual orientation is a "sin" - then I don't see why you should be allowed to swear and cuss under to offend someone under the guise of free speech.

Um, people use "black" and "gay" all the time. No one is being fined or arrested for the use of those words, nor should they be. Yes, one person may scold another for the words they use. That holds if you say "nigger" or if they say "fuck". It's a one-on-one interaction, where each person tries to defend their belief that a word should or shouldn't be used. It's the same as here. Yes, the people around you may not speak up, but then most people are too uninvolved or too cowardly to express their own views on the subject. And yes, that puts you an uncomfortable position where you feel you're battling the world when one person expresses derision about your word choices. That's life. That's how it's always been. The only difference is how often and what words are most likely to result in someone else pipping up and actually commenting.

Me? I'm more concerned about the actual anger and thoughts of others. PC-ness simply masks the issue. Having said that, I don't actually do what I should to work through that issue--to befriend those with questionable beliefs and challenge them to defend those beliefs (while I am equally challenged on my own beliefs). But, that's a much more involved and complex process. Isn't it just easier to be angry and blurt out a comment on the word choices of another instead of actually involving yourself with others in an actual two-way, long-term conversation?

Comment Re:"white-supremacist father and son" (Score 1) 418


Yes, Byrd was a Dixiecrat. I'll give you that one. On the other hand, he has since renounced his segregationist views as well as the KKK...Unlike, say, Strom Thurmond.

Metzger is a Bircher, and like many Republicans, falsely claims to be a libertarian. How he won one Dem primary, I'll never know, but he changed parties right afterwards, and is clearly not a Dem by any stretch.

Duke never held office as a Democrat. To say he was a Democrat is disingenuous at best.

Then there was Ronald Reagan and Strom Thurmond, who clearly switched parties in the 60's due to their disagreement with Democratic support for Civil Rights legislation.

Let's face it, liberal and progressive views are not in line with racism, while conservatives often harken to a past filled with racism at the very least.

And as for rights, pleas tell me what rights I have lost under Obama. The worst he has done is not denounce or back away from Bush's assault on our rights, which is unsurprising. I warned while it was happening that governments and politicians don't give up power, no matter how progressive they are or make themselves out to be. It's the right's fault for pushing his policies through, and the left's fault for not opposing him more, and finally, the people's fault for electing him for a second term despite his clear idiocy and incompetence.

Comment Re:What's so bad about swearing, anyway? (Score 1) 698

The association of words with meanings is such a practiced process by most people's minds that it is automatic. Hearing or seeing a word will immediately conjure up the associated mental semantic object, without any choice for the beholder (behearer?).

Normally, that's fine. However, words designated as profanity by consensus tend to be
a) associated with substances or actions that are generally "personal" - masturbation, copulation et al are /generally/ not performed in public, and doing so often generates a similar reaction to the profanity,
b) carry connotations of the worst aspects of the aforementioned topics. Sam and Bob make love suggests an activity that is mutually enjoyed and respectful. Sam fucks Bob imagines a somewhat more one-sided arrangement, with possible violent overtones (depending on the reader).

In other words, profanity as a class will induce an automatic mental imagining of the more unpleasant aspects of activities not usually encountered in a social situation. The visual or aural equivalent of an unpleasant smell being shoved under your nose.

Admittedly, the degree of discomfort varies between individuals, much as it does with smells, but it's still impolite to be so inconsiderate of others' potential feelings.

Comment Re:Oh, I understand (Score 1) 526

You seem to be suffering from two misguided assumptions. First, you misunderstand the role of the police in our society. Second, you are setting up a false dichotomy.

The police exist to provide the illusion that if you commit a crime, you will go to jail. As long as would-be criminals believe that if they break the law, they will be caught and punished (or at least, that there is an unacceptably high likelihood that they will be caught and punished), they have an incentive not to commit the crime. When you leave a "low-hanging fruit" crime unpunished, you are telling criminals that they can get away with crimes, as long as they aren't murder, rape or kidnapping. That's got Bad Idea written all over it.

While I seriously doubt that anyone on /. is going to argue that the alleged theft of a cell phone (even an eagerly anticipated prototype cell phone from a well-known company with bajillions of eager fanbois) is more important than a murder or rape, it's just plain stupid to argue that all cops should only work on murder and rape cases until the backlog is gone. Think about it for a second -- next time you get in a car wreck or you find someone breaking into your house, do you want the cops to refuse to investigate the accident because there is an unsolved murder that the entire freaking department is working? You will end up with anarchy, and I'll wager that the rate of murders and rapes would skyrocket because the criminals know that the po-po won't respond to calls because the murder and rape cases on the books are "a higher priority" than a simple breaking-and-entering call. And, every once in a while, a seemingly low-priority case ends up leading to the arrest and conviction of a big-ticket criminal.

The police department must try to strike a balance. When a crime has potentially been committed, they have to investigate -- even the lower priority cases -- because it is impossible to solve every crime...but as long as a reasonably high percentage of them are solved, it is more advantageous to most people, most of the time, to obey the law.

Comment Re:No! (Score 2, Funny) 179

And oh boy...it's so much nicer there.

You’re really going to have to expound on that. I have no idea what you’re getting at. Please don’t tell me you’re distressed just by having to drive past churches.

Now, the bets part - when your average "devout Polish Christian" goes, say, to Czech Republic (a lot of beatiful monasteries for example)...well, that person typically doesn't realize it was a trip to a very strongly atheist country. They just don't know. That doesn't work so well in the other direction. We know how to "not get in your way"...but here is the place for mutualism...

Evolution is equally pervasive where I am. I believe that God first of all exists, secondly could create, thirdly happens to have created, and while I really don’t care if someone disagrees with that, just about anywhere I go is saturated with evolutionary theory: billions of years this, millions of years that. In completely unrelated subjects they’ll feel the need to point out the completely unnecessary fact that such-and-such a fish, according to them, is thought to have been unchanged for tens of millions of years. And should I happen to voice my own opinion, I’ll be heartily beaten over the head by the devoted believers in Science.

Frankly I’d prefer we could just pretend to be civil enough to mostly get along. I’ll tolerate hearing about their billions of years and atheists can tolerate hearing a few prayers.

Comment Re:HFC (Score 1) 542

You've just got to know what to look for and, if at all possible, make some of these things for yourself. If the study's findings that HFCS supresses the satiety trigger, then paying a little more for the (generally higher-quality) non-HFCS versions of products might cause you to eat less and break even on your food bill. When it comes down to it, you're doing the right thing- read the labels and know what you are putting into yourself.

Comment Re:Using it since Alpha 1 (Score 1) 366

I think it's just laziness. Rather than do it in a sensible manor, they just moved everything left. What they should do is like Win3.1 did and make it a drop down control box that closes the window when you double click.....actually on KDE, it is....so drop the short cut controls. (*I'll still maximize and un-maximize by double clicking the title bar)

Comment Re:And what's the problem here? (Score 1) 826

There's some problems here:

* We have a legal system that allows for excessive damages in medical malpractice suits. This makes it mandatory for doctors to carry a heavy burden of insurance and that gets passed on to whoever is paying for the medical care. Doctors over-perform tests and over-prescribe drugs because of fear they may be sued.

No, someone who had the wrong leg amputated deserves a giant payout. There's no such thing as an excessively large damage award; if you screw up, you need to pay.

The problem is that the system has no good way of getting rid of bad doctors. Someone who amputates the wrong leg, or botches surgery in a catastrophic way, should not be able to operate again, ever. It may sound harsh, but that's the way it is. Pilots who wreck planes or helicopters usually never get to fly again if they were at fault. The FAA might not prevent them, depending on the circumstances, but they're never going to get a paying job as a pilot again.

Doctors who screw up should have their insurance pay for it, but after that, why are they still working as doctors and doing surgeries? Insurers shouldn't be covering them, and hospitals shouldn't be employing them. Something's wrong if they're able to continue practicing and carrying insurance.

Pharmaceutical prices are unregulated, allowing excessive profiteering.

Don't forget patents on DNA, patents on naturally-occurring compounds, and the fact that doctors are little more than drug pushers, trained by the pharma companies to push expensive drugs instead of cheaper alternatives or generics. The entire way the medical profession operates in this country is utterly broken. "Doctors" here generally aren't worth squat.

Hospitals are allowed to operate for profit. WTF?

That does seem screwed up. I wonder if they're allowed to operate as non-profit.

Hospitals are able to milk patients with inflated fees for basic items.

There's a good reason for that: hospitals wouldn't stay in business otherwise. The problem is that there's millions of people (many of them illegal aliens) who use ERs as their primary care physicians, because of a Federal law that doesn't allow them to turn people away. So hospitals are required, by law, to provide free treatment to people. To pay for it, they jack up the cost for everyone else, and it shows up as things like $10 aspirin pills, $20 band-aids, etc.

Employer provided health insurance reduces the competitiveness among insurers because the employees don't directly feel the brunt of the costs and lack options from different providers that would drive costs down. This unnecessarily raises costs for private insurance. It remains to be seen how the new plan will save money here.

It won't. This new plan is only going to make things worse.

Comment Re:Someone tagged this FOIA (Score 1) 776

That's not the point. The people targeted can be as guilty as the Devil himself.

1.) you've got the problem with oversight. So what do you do if the relevant authorities designate you an EC (btw, not that this is any relevant term, it's an invention, because it's to inconvenient to treat criminals like Osama Bin Laden as criminals)

2.) what do you do if some foreign government decides to kill you? (Hint: The Russian government has assassinated British citizens in the UK in the past)

Basically, you are argueing that anything goes, if it's good for the "country". Who are you that you would deny that argumentation to anyone else? The anyone else just might have a different "country", and might consider all Americans criminals worthy of capital punishment.

3.) Last but not least, there are collateral damages if you decide to kill Mr. X by bombing him. Perhaps not in every and each case, but in a good number of cases. Guess they should have considered whom they socialize with. So why don't put the neighbors of murderers (or their whole family) on death row too?

Comment Re:Oddly Enough (Score 1) 776

You are missing the point. A marine is not shooting at an individual, he's shooting at a type. A marine will shoot 'guy in the other uniform,' 'guy defending target' or 'guy aiming a gun at him.' He won't shoot 'guy named Joe Smith.'

That's the difference between a military killing and an assassination. The problem is not that the drone attacks are targeting individuals, it's that they are targeting specific individuals. Marines are (usually) not told to go and kill specific individuals. They are told to go and achieve specific military objectives and kill people who try to stop them.

There is a big difference between a soldier shooting an American citizen who is aiming a gun at him, and the military killing a specific, identified, American. The ACLU has no problem with the former. They object to assassination - meaning targeted killing of specific individuals - of American citizens by American troops without any oversight or accountability.

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