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Comment Re:"self investigate" == alt.right (Score 1) 267

Why are we calling this "fake" news instead of "incorrect news" or "wrong news" or "wacko conspiracy theory"?

Because the "news" in question isn't just false, it's deliberately false and inflammatory. As in, made up out of whole cloth by trolls, just to wreak havoc, or by paid provocateurs, to drive gullible people towards advertisements by provoking them. The people behind the fake news are well aware that it is 100% fiction, and they don't care.

That's different from inadvertently getting a story wrong, and it's different from being genuinely insane and thereby sending out incorrect information that you honestly think is correct.

"Fake" is in fact the most accurate way to describe it. So if you're going to question other peoples' ulterior motives, what dark motives are you concealing?

Comment Re:Who's gonna pay for it? (Score 1) 332

The closest to an argument I've heard is we'll tax factory output instead of income, but that doesn't work. You'll be accused of seizing factories ala Communism.

No matter what you do you're going to be accused of something by the people who stand to benefit from the status quo. If you let the possibility of accusations veto a plan, then you'll never be able to plan anything; which is de facto equivalent to planning for the problem to be resolved (one way or another) for you via massive civil unrest.

"Tax the robots" is probably as close an answer as you're going to get to the "who's gonna pay for it" question. Elections are won on feelings, as you say, and I suspect there are going to be a lot of anti-robot feelings in the future, unless/until this problem is solved.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Some post election clarifications 1

1. No, Liberals were not "in a bubble". Our reaction isn't because we were surprised by the Trump victory, we knew there was a chance of one, pretty much every liberal I knew in a swing state voted for Clinton because we knew how close it was. Our reaction post election is horror, not surprise. Insofar as we expected a Clinton win, it was because the opinion polls seemed to suggest that. Those of us who trusted Nate Silver knew there was a one third chance of Trump winning.

Submission + - How to View the SpaceX Falcon 9 Return to Flight at Vandenberg Air Force Base (perens.com)

Bruce Perens writes: Silicon Valley folks should, sometime, take the opportunity to view a launch at Vandenberg Air Force Base. Lompoc is 4-5 hours from the Bay, 2.5 hours from LA if there's ever no traffic. An upcoming SpaceX launch is notable because it's their return to flight, months after their last attempt blew up on the pad during a pre-launch test. Read how to view the launch.

Comment Re:Onwards to victory. (Score 1) 353

I went to the supermarket today. According to the National Enquirer, Hillary Clinton has already been indicted for a whole bunch of illegal things she did. It was on the front page.

I'm still a little leery of jumping on the "OMG FAKE NEWS!!" bandwagon given there seems to be absolutely nothing new about the phenomenon. I'm inclined to blame a combination of an awful Democratic candidate (well, she was. And no, I don't think Bernie would have won either. Democrats had a dreadful choice at the primaries this year) and the seductive nature of Fascism, which has proven itself over and over again to be a message people respond to as long as they don't recognize it for what it is.

The supermarket tabloids have been peddling this crap for decades. TV news, especially local news, also has its own version of "reality", frequently mixing syndicated spots of dubious accuracy with genuine news. (And this is ignoring justified, if over stated, criticism of mainstream serious print media, which is a different category of misleading content.)

Comment Re: Less politics (Score 1) 110

Eich resigned because of external pressure on the Mozilla organization. I hear that one of the lobbying activities against him was when the dating site "OK Cupid" started informing Firefox users who accessed the site of Eich's activities and that they should download a browser made by people who don't nominate someone with gender discrimination issues to be their CEO. At the time, 8% of OK Cupid customers were there to arrange same-gender meetings.

They felt he was the public face of the company.

Russ Nelson published a piece on what he theorized was the economic motivation of Blacks to be lazy, and was booted off of the Open Source Initiative board. He wasn't thinking about how it would be perceived. A modified version of the piece is still online, but not the version that got him in trouble. In general, executives are seen as the public faces of their organizations even in the case of Nelson, who was not the chairman of the board, but was simply a member of the executive board. In Nelson's case, it wasn't that he made publicity appearances and press releases, it was that he was one of the people with the power to direct the company (and thus a more real face of the company than soneone who just does PR), and folks did not trust that someone who wrote what he did would behave as they would like in that position.

Comment Re:What's the big deal? (Score 2, Insightful) 241

Playboy departed the nude photo market due to the vast and unending supply of photos and video of all manner of naked people doing sexual things which one can access via the Internet.

However, one can make a case that a good deal of the past content of Playboy was about objectifying women and to some extent the publication still is about that.

It was a dumb decision. Several people just weren't thinking. They're embarrassed now. They learned, and won't do it again.

Comment Re: Less politics (Score 1) 110

It was only 1967 when the United States Supreme Court decided Loving v. Virginia, a miscegenation case. Preventing blacks and whites from marrying, as the State of Virginia (and many others) did with laws on its books until it was forced to remove them in 1967, is an issue of racism, nothing else. One doesn't have to be thin skinned to be disgusted by racism.

Why should I feel any different about gender discrminiation? Texas had a law on the book making homosexual relations illegal in 1998, and two men were arrested for it and similarly to Loving, helped to strike it down in the courts. Marriage discrimination is yet another legal wall erected by the prejudiced. Doesn't take a thin skin at all to oppose it and its supporters.

Comment Re: Less politics (Score 1) 110

Because you are an end-user and not an investor in these companies, you might actually think the public face of the companies is a logo or a trademark rather than a human being. Perhaps you think the public face of McDonalds is Ronald McDonald! Or that Sprint's used to be that actor who portrayed a technician. But this naiveté is not shared by the people who are the target audience for the public face that the CEO's appearances and quotations produce. AMD has people to handle the guy who once plugged one of their CPUs into a motherboard. The public face nurtured by the CEO is reserved for investors and business relationships, government, and corporate citizenship. These are all areas in which a decision made outside of the company can have great impact on the company. And so, if you go on the company site, you will see the CEO quoted in the press releases related to those items. At trade shows, you will see these CEOs as keynotes. I am heading for CES in January, where many CEOs you've never heard of who run large tech companies will be speaking, and there will be full halls of their eager target audiences.

Don't you think it might be self-centered to assume someone's not the public face of the company because you don't know who they are?

Comment Re:Hi , this is some random website called (Score 1) 580

The Intercept is a legitimate site co-founded by Glenn Greenwald. It has essentially the same reputation as Greenwald, it's truthful and focuses on certain issues to the point of obsession, but for fairly good reasons.

As far as not answering the question, the correct response to "Will you ever sell your services to make a registry for Muslims?" is the same one as "Would you build baby mulching machines in Toddler sizes?" or even just "If Trump asked you to make your workers wear militaristic uniforms with jackboots, would you do that?" - the answer is always going to be "Fuck no", not "At this time we'd prefer not to answer" or no answer at all. That's regardless of whether the questioner is from the New York Times or Breitbart.

Comment Re:Why is this guy still talking (Score 5, Insightful) 463

But WAIT A SECOND, while the pies and baskets have each fallen in value by a factor of ten, a pie is still worth ONE basket. So Abby and Betty can just continue life as before. The robots changed nothing.

The just-so story is pretty, but it's hard to take it seriously as a prediction of the future when it doesn't even predict the past accurately.

If I replace "robots" with "cheap foreign labor", can you explain why so many American manufacturers went out of business (or moved operations abroad) in the last few decades?

According to your theory, American companies should have been able to continue operating just as before ("the foreign workers changed nothing"), because one ton of American steel was still worth exactly one American-made car (or etc). But that isn't what happened, is it? Instead, many people lost their jobs and ended up either unemployed or working at less-desirable unskilled service jobs afterwards, because they were unable to compete with the cheaper/more efficient new foreign producers who didn't need to hire them.

Abby can just switch to making baskets

Can she "just switch"? Does Abby somehow already have the skills to make baskets, or the time and resources to learn those skills to the point where she can perform them at a commercially viable level? Switching to a completely different skill set is not without cost; not everyone can afford to spend months or years without any income while they retrain themselves. That's why so many previously-high-earning people end up "switching down" to something like Walmart cashier after the industry they trained for becomes non-viable.

So the most likely scenario is to put [the "losers"] on some sort of welfare until we can get riot control robots perfected

And here is exactly where the core of the problem lies. As the skill level of available automation rises, the pool of "losers" (i.e. people who aren't sufficiently skilled or adaptable to economically compete with cheap automation) gets larger every year, and eventually includes most (if not all) of the human population.

Dismissing that issue as a negligible corner case is ignoring the problem entirely. The fact that you think "riot control robots" are the endgame suggests that you do also see the problem; you just refuse to label it as a problem because you lack sympathy for "those people".

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