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Archaeologists Discover Lost City In Cambodian Jungle

timothy posted about 10 months ago | from the find-the-recipe-book-for-us-please dept.

Earth 91

First time accepted submitter steve_mark66 writes "Australian archaeologists using remote-sensing technology have uncovered an ancient city in Cambodia that has remained hidden for more than a millennium under dense jungle undergrowth. The discovery of Mahendraparvata, a 1,200-year-old lost city that predates Cambodia's famous Angkor Wat temple complex by 350 years, was part of the Hindu-Buddhist Khmer Empire that ruled much of Southeast Asia from about 800 to 1400 A.D., during a time that coincided with Europe's Middle Ages" The Age has a story of its own, with video.

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HO !! CHI !! MEN !! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#44023915)

And there you go !!

More Startling still......... (1, Funny)

kawabago (551139) | about 10 months ago | (#44023929)

Inside a sarcophagus at the centre of the main pyramid they found.... Jimmy Hoffa!

Re:More Startling still......... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#44023973)

Inside a sarcophagus at the centre of the main pyramid they found....Jimmy Hoffa!

As any of the kids around here remember who Jimmy Hoffa was.

Re:More Startling still......... (1, Funny)

ArcadeMan (2766669) | about 10 months ago | (#44024095)

He was one of the Beatles, right?

Re:More Startling still......... (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#44024655)

No, you're thinking of Mick Jagger!

Hoffa, I think, was killed by the Manson family back in the 80's, when they killed Sharon Stone. I think Charles Manson's daughter Marilyn is still around, I hear she's the singer in some band.

Re:More Startling still......... (4, Informative)

sumdumass (711423) | about 10 months ago | (#44025403)

lol.. Hoffa was the leader of the teamsters union that allowed the mob to be part of it. It helped in their so called fight against the big corporations to have a little mob backup. The mob would in turn use the retirement funds to launder money.

Anyways, the senate started investigating the mob connections and the unions and Hoffa disappeared without a trace. No one has found a body, he is presumed to be dead. Several mobsters have claimed they killed him and lead investigators on wild trips looking for the body but it has never been found to date. There is a lot more involved and is actually a somewhat interesting story if you find yourself bored one of these days. Hoffa was one of the original anti 1%ers so to say, but he did most of his work attempting to unionize America in the 70's which more or less lead to all the downsizing in the 80's and outsourcing in the 90's. Most of what the unions demanded back then has been codified into laws now making them more or less a bullying arm for wages and benefits.

Re:More Startling still......... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#44025901)

Most of what the unions demanded back then has been codified into laws now making them more or less a bullying arm for wages and benefits.

Things like the 8 hour work day, the 40 hour work week, the minimum wage, OSHA, wrongful termination and unemployment compensation, the notion that employees are not simply disposable cogs, and the idea that everyone in the company should be treated with respect and dignity.

Re:More Startling still......... (2)

mi (197448) | about 10 months ago | (#44028139)

Except:
  • 40 hour work week is not really codified anywhere federally and people do routinely work longer hours;
  • the minimum wage existed since before the WW2 [wikipedia.org] thus can hardly be attributed to Hoffa's efforts;
  • and there is no such thing as "wrongful termination" really — we are all employees "at will": neither the employees nor the employers are indentured and can leave or be let go at any time;

As for "disposable cogs", "respect", and "dignity" these concepts just nebulous as they always have been — and not because Hoffa failed, but because they simply can not codified into law any more than, say, love or, indeed, respect and dignity can be.

Unions always were — and remain today — (wanna-be) monopolies seeking to maintain and ever increase the prices of what their members are selling (their labor). Plumber Joe and plumber Jim joining a union to be able to get 10% higher prices for their work is not any different than "Joe's Burger" and "Jim's Burger" agreeing to raise their prices on the same day. Unfortunately, America's anti-trust laws apply only in the latter case, even though the former ought to be just as criminal.

Re:More Startling still......... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#44028787)

By any chance would you feel better about it if the unions were called employment agencies? No one cries foul when Jim's Burger merges with Joe Burger to become Mega-Burger, that is just good business. How is labor seeking a market advantage for better pay and benefits any less capitalistic than a merger or any other contract process? Companies now bemoan the cost of the contracts they agreed to with employees in the past, but why should they be able to treat those contracts differently than those signed with customers that weren't as profitable as they hoped?

Perhaps if unions had abstracted themselves from "communist" language, "collective bargaining", "workers unite", etc. and instead talked about increased efficiency and streamlined hiring processes they wouldn't stick in the craw of people who link to sites warning of the threats of communism.

Unions in the Trucking industry (the Teamsters where Hoffa started) began because employers set standards that essentially required employees to break existing laws to keep their jobs. The smallest traffic snarl could cause you to lose pay or a job. In response truckers turned to wide spread stimulant abuse and unsafe driving practices to keep their positions.
  At the beginning the union worked to make sure employers weren't firing drivers for things that were beyond their control and that standards weren't set that couldn't be safely met. As much as people like to talk about the corruption and mob connections the unions quickly developed, it is rarely mentioned that it was when the companies hired thugs to threaten and beat union agitators that unions turned to the mobs to help even the playing field. That is what introduced organized crime into a movement that originally only wanted to keep members safe from EMPLOYERS who illegally colluded on pay and work requirements to keep drivers desperate to keep their jobs.

Re:More Startling still......... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#44029279)

and there is no such thing as "wrongful termination" really — we are all employees "at will"

Not if you have a contract, which is the biggest benefit to being in a union -- the contract. They can't fire you because your personality clashes with the new boss, and layoffs must be in accordance with the contract.

Unions always were — and remain today — (wanna-be) monopolies seeking to maintain and ever increase the prices of what their members are selling (their labor).

Pure pseudo-libertarian 1%er bullshit. Anyone qualified can get the job and join the union. Are you lying deliberately, or are you unsophisticated enough to actually believe that horse shit?

Re:More Startling still......... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#44029827)

I can ask the exact same question of you? Do you honestly believe that unionization after WW2 has been at all positive for the American workforce? Are you deliberately ignoring the gigantic cut Union heads take off the top as dues, the effect that union bullying has had on construction, slowdowns, strikes, etc? Locales nationwide that have made it the law that only union laborers may be hired for construction projects see without a doubt the slowest construction in the country, taking dozens of times longer than non-union counterparts in places like New York City that refused to limit the choices of American employers. Wake up and look deeper into the robber barons and 1%ers running the unions you support.

Re:More Startling still......... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#44032871)

Wake up and look deeper into the robber barons and 1%ers running the unions you support.

So do the 1% own the companies or do the 1% run the unions? Or are you just completely clueless and wanting to talk like a hot shot on the internet because you're on summer break from middle school? Take your eighth grade libertarian ideology and cry to your mommy about it.

Unions are a result of the free market. If the customer base can organize a boycott to protest high prices, and some buddies can organize a corporation to shield themselves from personal liability if their business goes belly up, then the employees can organize their own boycotts, withholding their labor, to protest low wages, poor working conditions, unsafe environments, etc...

You ask if unionization after WW2 has been at all positive for the American workforce, the answer is a clear and resounding yes. The 1950's and 1960's were among the most prosperous decades in all of American history, the only period in which we actually had a true middle-class. What every anti-union proselytizer notes as unions failing the american worker is almost in every case of modern technology replacing the worker entirely, something that was bound to happen with or without unions. Thanks to computers and robots companies today have much less need for skilled or unskilled labor. Most factories can be run on skeleton crews of a few dozen people that are only really there to monitor the machines for error conditions. We're moving past the age of manual labor, but that is in no way a failing of unions.

Soon it won't matter if you're skilled or not, union or not, there simply will not be any work to go around because it will all be automated, from mining material from the earth to processing it into materials and fuel, to running power plants, farms, and factories, to transporting freight via automated truck, train, ship, or aircraft, to maintenancing all of the above. The robots will soon do it all, leaving mankind to sit on the sidelines and ponder the arts and sciences. As automation approaches 100%, price approaches 0%. Scarcity creates value, infinite goods are worthless. If you don't think this is where the future is going then you've got a heck of a lot more in common with those 1950's union gangsters than you realize.

Buy an acre of land and start a family farm. You'll need it to feed yourself in 30 years.

Re:More Startling still......... (1)

mi (197448) | about 10 months ago | (#44038341)

Unions always were — and remain today — (wanna-be) monopolies seeking to maintain and ever increase the prices of what their members are selling (their labor). Pure pseudo-libertarian 1%er bullshit. Anyone qualified can get the job and join the union.

There is a subtle difference between "can join the union" and "must join the union". Once joining the union becomes mandatory for being able to sell one's labor, the union becomes just as bad a monopoly as Standard Oil ever was...

Are you lying deliberately, or are you unsophisticated enough to actually believe that horse shit?

I'm being deliberately honest. You, sir, need to learn some debating etiquette, if you wish to, uhm, debate with people, who don't already agree with you.

Re:More Startling still......... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#44033043)

- The 40 hour work week was codified in law until George W. Bush signed it away in 2004. [google.com]

- Unions lobbied for and won the 1938 Fair Labor Standards Act [massaflcio.org]

- There absolutely is such a thing as "wrongful termination", really. If you fire someone because of their skin color, religion, ethnicity, gender, or age then you have illegally discriminated against them, as such they were subject to "wrongful termination" and can sue you for damages.

Unionization is just as much an American right as the right to bear arms. Indeed most people that defend one will defend the other. Beware the man that defends the liberties of some but not those of others. If you don't like Unions then don't work with them or buy from them, after all that's what we're told when we complain about Walmart.

Re:More Startling still......... (1)

mi (197448) | about 10 months ago | (#44038493)

If you fire someone because of their skin color, religion, ethnicity, gender, or age then you have illegally discriminated against them

The non-discrimination laws you are referring to have nothing to do with unions.

Unionization is just as much an American right as the right to bear arms.

Is it? Then, please, cite the relevant Article of the Constitution or Amendment. You can't. The most you can scrape is "freedom of association" — and I have no problem with that whatsoever. People ought to be free to unionize to their heart's content, but such unions can not have any more legal power, than bowling leagues or reading clubs. Unfortunately, they do have a lot more power than that: you can not, for example, be a carpenter in New York City without being a union-member.

If you don't like Unions then don't work with them or buy from them, after all that's what we're told when we complain about Walmart.

If Walmart were to conspire with K-Mart to raise prices of their wares, they'll be subject to anti-trust laws — and rightly so. Individual employees unionizing to raise the price of their labor are not any different morally — and should be treated the same legally.

If the US saw fit to block the merger [nwsource.com] of Staples and Office Depot once — for fear, the resulting entity will become a monopoly in the market of the freaking office supplies, why do we not only tolerate, but encourage monopolies in the markets of law-enforcement, firefighting, healthcare, mass-transit, and public school labor?

Re:More Startling still......... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#44040035)

Unionization is just as much an American right as the right to bear arms.

Is it? Then, please, cite the relevant Article of the Constitution or Amendment. You can't. The most you can scrape is "freedom of association" — and I have no problem with that whatsoever.

It seems you've done all the work for me and even agree that unionization is a fundamental American right no different than the right to bear arms. "Freedom of Association" is the freedom to Unionize.

The free market sets the price of everything. The free market has opted to favor union labor over non-union labor. Believe it or not the free market guides who gets elected to office and quite literally the free market dictates government policy. Despite the best efforts of corrupt politicians to undermine unions, the free market has managed to keep unions around.

Why do you hate the free market and America so much anyway? I bet it's greed, selfishness, and laziness. You want what other people have but you don't want to work or pay for it. You'd throw unions under the bus and actively deny all of their contributions to society so that you could take a 5 cent pay raise which ironically would evaporate in the same instant as the union.

What you misunderstand is that there is no reason for labor to cost anything, there is always a moron somewhere willing to work for free in exchange for the promise of stock options and robots have and continue to replace millions of laborers each year. The reason unions are necessary is because the individual can not stand up to management. After all, the nail that stands out gets hammered. However if all the workers stand up and speak as one it puts the entire organization in jeopardy, giving management a reason to listen.

It's sad to see the same people that cheer for rebels fighting oppressive dictators turn a blind eye, or worse side with management, when they face the same situations in the work place. Historically, the people at the bottom eventually get tired of serving the people at the top and take what they feel they are owed. This is the cause of every revolution, every act of employee theft, and the fundamental reason unions exist, specifically to stabilize the system with a buffer known as the middle-class.

Re:More Startling still......... (1)

mi (197448) | about 10 months ago | (#44042261)

"Freedom of Association" is the freedom to Unionize.

No more so, than a freedom to form a bowling league or a book club. Now imagine it being mandatory to join the league in order to bowl Saturday night... Freedom of Association gives you the freedom to hang out with whomever you wish, but it does not obligate me to recognize your association as anything.

It is this mandate, that Unions (seek to) impose on everybody else, that you will not find in the Constitution.

Why do you hate the free market and America so much anyway?

Cute.

there is always a moron somewhere willing to work for free [...]

Oh, so now we come to discussing, why the Unions seek the power, that you alleged is their right...

Well, there is always a moron somewhere willing to give you a free X-Box in exchange for the promise of you buying games from him. Would you support retailers being legally forbidden from offering such specials? Would you support a restaurant voting itself to become your sole provider of take-outs? Because that's exactly the power available today to unions: once employees vote to form a union (or join an existing one), the employer can not hire anyone outside the union.

There is no "them" vs. "us" — we are all buyers and sellers in the market-place. What is applicable to vendors of food, books, games, or services, is just as applicable to vendors of labor (ourselves). The only difference is, sellers of labor have more votes. In a fair world, this should not make them any powerful in the free market, that you profess to love...

with management, when they face the same situations in the work place.

Are you seriously equating abusive managers with government dictators? Wow...

Re:More Startling still......... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#44028261)

You mean comyernizzum?

Re:More Startling still......... (3, Funny)

cusco (717999) | about 10 months ago | (#44026451)

Friend of mine grew up in South Chicago. He said that when Hoffa disappeared everyone in his neighborhood stopped buying sausage for a couple of weeks.

Re:More Startling still......... (2)

jbengt (874751) | about 10 months ago | (#44028299)

Hoffa was one of the original anti 1%ers so to say, but he did most of his work attempting to unionize America in the 70's which more or less lead to all the downsizing . . .

No, he did most of his work unionizing during the depression, when workers really needed it (when the companies were hiring their own thugs to beat up and shoot picketers). By the 60s Hoffa was just a union boss, and by the mid 70s he was disappeared.

Re:More Startling still......... (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#44028891)

Hoffa was one of the original anti 1%ers so to say, but he did most of his work attempting to unionize America in the 70's which more or less lead to all the downsizing in the 80's and outsourcing in the 90's.

I wish I could log in here because nobody but you will see this comment, but you're spewing misinformation. I was there; I'm 61. You got your history ass-backwards. By the '70s unions were already past their peak and losing power. The downsizing in the '80s and the outsourcing in the 90's had nothing to do with unions. When Reagan jawboned congress to slash the capital gains tax to half of what an ordinary worker paid, there was an orgy of leveraged buyouts by folks like Romney, who would buy up successful companies, fire all the workers and sell off the assets and take home piles of money made on the misery of others. The capital gains tax discourages this behavior.

I was working it Disney from 1980 to 1985 and one of thes vulture capital firms were trying to do it to Disney, buying Disney, selling all its IP and real estate, and leaving all its thousands of employees looking for new jobs. My union then was the Teamsters (worse union I've ever been in, they were in bed with management) and our hours were cut from 40 to 30 for a few months. It really hurt, but not nearly as bad as if the vultures would have succeeded and we'd all been out of work.

The outsourcing was a result of the unions having lost almost all their membership and power; with strong unions, they would not have been able to do all that outsourcing.

Re:More Startling still......... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#44040211)

There is an intentional movement, almost entirely within the Republican-Libertarian party, to rewrite history to portray businessmen as heroes, the upper class as victims of oppressive government, and the lower classes as villainous scum intent on leeching the working man blind.

The fact is that it is the lower classes, sub- $500,000 income per year, that design everything, build everything, and do everything. The top 1%ers are no heroes, they are a blackhole in our economy. A pit into which money falls in but never returns. As they grow richer we all starve. This was common knowledge a hundred years ago [wikimedia.org]

Re:More Startling still......... (1)

sumdumass (711423) | about 10 months ago | (#44051919)

Sigh.. Reagan raised, not cut capitol gains.

The downsizing has to do with the inefficiencies inherent with unions- one of the key factors in why GM needed bankruptcy and a government bailout.

The venture capitalist dismantling businesses was because the businesses were worth more closed and liquidated then open and producing. This was a product of poor management, high regional labor costs (unions) compared to globalized labor costs, and a high cost of business from regulation and market forces. It had little to do with capitol gains outside of changing the amount needed for profit. The change in the amounts needed for profit was minute compared to the other costs. People were liquidating businesses long before the capitol gains rate changed under Clinton. The real enemy you saw was globalization of the market place.

Re:More Startling still......... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#44031169)

They found the real Paul. Fucking False Paul (Faul) given a knighthood for his "service" to the country. FUCK YOU

Re:More Startling still......... (3, Funny)

TrollstonButterbeans (2914995) | about 10 months ago | (#44026071)

The kids these days are really resourceful and will lookup Jimmy Hoffa on wikipedia, then watch a Jimmy Hoffa youtube vid and then berate their peers on Facebook for not knowing who Jim Hoffa is and calling their peers noobs. Kids these days ... you gotta love 'em ...

Re:More Startling still......... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#44031957)

Clearly he was the Goa'uld who the named the Jafa after (originally J. Hoffa).

Re: More Startling still......... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#44061215)

Does stupid hurt ?

Let's hope no one needs... (4, Insightful)

Jonah Hex (651948) | about 10 months ago | (#44023961)

... a road built nearby. Maybe I'm just getting old myself, but archaeological sites should be protected, and their destruction really makes me sick at the stupidity of the human race. - HEX

Re:Let's hope no one needs... (4, Interesting)

cold fjord (826450) | about 10 months ago | (#44024017)

This new one appears to be untouched by looters, so it may well be in tact and preserved. It also may have some unique content since it appears to have been built during a transition period. It should be interesting to see what comes from it.

I will also be curious to see what is found using the same technique in other parts of the world, such as South America, Africa, and the Middle East.

Re:Let's hope no one needs... (2)

phantomfive (622387) | about 10 months ago | (#44025427)

Yeah, central America could be huge for that kind of thing. There are large sections of Nicaragua that no one has entered for centuries, for example. There's not even a road from one side of the country to the other.

Re:Let's hope no one needs... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#44033329)

Yeah, central America could be huge for that kind of thing. There are large sections of Nicaragua that no one has entered for centuries, for example. There's not even a road from one side of the country to the other.

See those long yellow lines [goo.gl]? Those are called roads. There are certainly more than zero that go from one side of Nicaragua to the other.

Re:Let's hope no one needs... (2)

Apothem (1921856) | about 10 months ago | (#44026227)

The article mentioned a lot of landmines around the landmark. I'm guessing that's one of the reasons why there hasn't been much looting.

Re:Let's hope no one needs... (2)

cold fjord (826450) | about 10 months ago | (#44026601)

Since the 1960s maybe. But looters have had 1,200 years to find the place, and it looks like they haven't.

Re:Let's hope no one needs... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#44028243)

so it may well be in tact and preserved

It's 'intact'. Tact is how you tell someone they're an idiot without hurting their feelings.

Re:Let's hope no one needs... (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#44024113)

It's on top of a mountain, at least. They're not going to build a shopping mall there, but it definitely will become a tourist site.

Cambodia is in a precarious position where one of their biggest sources of revenue is tourism, and they have to balance making tourist dollars with preserving the site -- which could easily get trashed by tourists if not sufficiently protected, and no amount of protection will protect from a gradual wear caused by millions of tourists every year.

Basically, in such a poor country:

no tourism -> site unmaintained; degrades due to natural causes and looters

some tourism -> money generated funds preservation and restoration

lots of tourism -> lots of money, but also a lot more damage to the site not all of which can be repaired

Full disclosure: I went to the Angkor Wat as a tourist last year.

Re:Let's hope no one needs... (2)

cusco (717999) | about 10 months ago | (#44025143)

Another option would be:

lots of tourism -> lots of money, part of which is used to restore the site

This is what is being done at Machu Picchu and some of the other sites in Peru. I first saw Machu Picchu in 1987, and visited again two years ago. It's much better restored, much better maintained, and much better researched than it ever was before.

Re:Let's hope no one needs... (5, Informative)

gubon13 (2695335) | about 10 months ago | (#44024135)

I spent some time out in Angkor Wat and the surrounding areas just a few months ago. Beng Mealea was by far my favorite because it was the least molested and commercialized. Cambodia is in a period of economic transition and they are starting to amass the kind of discretionary wealth necessary to properly protect their proud history. Sadly, most of it has been destroyed and/or looted over the years and there is little they can do about that.

As for your hope, I can pretty much assure you that the area where they re-discovered these ruins is so far away from any place that would need a real road that you needn't worry...

Re:Let's hope no one needs... (1)

sdsucks (1161899) | about 10 months ago | (#44024423)

"Discretionary wealth"... ? Sure, I guess it's discretionary if you exclude providing adequate food, shelter, and education for the majority of the population from the governments priorities (sadly, this is rather true..). No doubt Cambodia is changing quickly, but government priorities here are on making money, typically this means more money for those that are already rich.

Anything of value found will be exploited for the purpose of tourism (or otherwise), you can count on that... But that is probably the only way it will get any sort of protection at all.

Re:Let's hope no one needs... (2, Insightful)

sumdumass (711423) | about 10 months ago | (#44025339)

I hate to bring this up but the idea that government provides adequate food, shelter, and education for the majority of the population is really one reason why a government fails to do so.

Seriously, in the US, before the government handed things out or got involved in education, people received enough education from the local communities to function in society. Before government got involved in providing housing and food, the vast majority of people were able to find it and live- even if they were working just for subsistence. Now enter education- kids graduate from high school knowing less about more things then a high school graduate in 1860. I spoke with someone just today who told me that going off welfare and working has actually cost him an average of $40 a week in income because he now has to pay for his transportation to work and childcare. Of course he expects this to be made up within 6 months when he gets his evaluation and raises.

We have gotten away from a large agrarian society and a lot of the gold old past simply isn't practicable or applicable any more. But expecting government to provide something is really harsh on someone trying to provide for themselves. That is how a country becomes wealthy- when the population provides for themselves and the government only keeps the social economic environment that makes it possible to do so.

Re:Let's hope no one needs... (3, Informative)

Alomex (148003) | about 10 months ago | (#44025805)

Seriously, in the US, before the government handed things out or got involved in education, people received enough education from the local communities to function in society.

What on Earth are you talking about? Education in America has been handled by the (local) government going all the way back to the settlement of the new colonies.

Also, America is exceptional in that it always had high literacy rates, but in other countries, literacy has increased directly proportionally to the amount of involvement by the government, and higher standard of living is directly co-related to the participation of government with the "big-state" countries of Europe such as Germany and Scandinavian countries consistently outperforming the "small state" countries such as the US (yes, by developed world standards the US is a low taxes, small government country).

Re:Let's hope no one needs... (1)

sumdumass (711423) | about 10 months ago | (#44026199)

What on Earth are you talking about? Education in America has been handled by the (local) government going all the way back to the settlement of the new colonies.

Obviously, I forgot to spell it out.. federal and state government as in the government. Local governments dabbled in public education but it wasn't consistent or always available in every city.

Also, America is exceptional in that it always had high literacy rates, but in other countries, literacy has increased directly proportionally to the amount of involvement by the government, and higher standard of living is directly co-related to the participation of government with the "big-state" countries of Europe such as Germany and Scandinavian countries consistently outperforming the "small state" countries such as the US (yes, by developed world standards the US is a low taxes, small government country).

I'm not sure how higher standard of living is connected with adequate food, shelter, and education for the majority of the population. I'm sure with a base line, the rest will follow but you have missed the entire point.

Re:Let's hope no one needs... (3, Insightful)

Alomex (148003) | about 10 months ago | (#44026507)

but you have missed the entire point.

Nope, I got it loud and clear. Furthermore I gave you evidence to the contrary, i.e. that this "less government implies richer country" is just not supported by the facts. More specifically, there are no examples in the world for the following claim you made.

That is how a country becomes wealthy- when the population provides for themselves and the government only keeps the social economic environment that makes it possible to do so.

The last country that tried that is Ireland, which is currently one of the basket cases of Europe. In the meantime the direct opposite of what you claimed, namely Germany, is thriving.

Seriously dude, you bought this right wing lie of "less government is always better" not unlike the dems of old bought into "more government is always better". Neither one is the case.

Modern democrats now realize that there is such a thing as too much government. Republicans, on the contrary, have yet to learn that there is such a thing as too little government. See Haiti, for an example across the board, or America under-performing Europe in most health indicators while spending more money for an example of an area where America needs more government, not less.

Re:Let's hope no one needs... (2)

BooMonster (110656) | about 10 months ago | (#44026733)

Modern democrats now realize that there is such a thing as too much government. [Citation needed]

Re:Let's hope no one needs... (2)

Alomex (148003) | about 10 months ago | (#44027205)

Easy, just to give an example federal government spending went down in size during the Clinton administration, and indeed it was smaller on the average than during the Bush administration. In the Obama years, after the first Keynesian expansion, the size of the government has been going down every year since FY 2009.

The days of tax-and-spend democrats are gone. Now the biggest problem facing America is slash-and-burn republicans, which approve of all and any tax cuts, including those what would place the country at a serious economic disadvantage with the rest of the world such as education, research, basic health and public infrastructure.

Re:Let's hope no one needs... (1)

Straif (172656) | about 10 months ago | (#44030067)

Just a small clarification:

the size of the government has been going down every year since FY 2009.

I'm sure you meant to point out this is only true when you include state and local governments (the majority of States currently have Republican governors BTW). The Federal government, on the other hand, has increased in sized pretty much every month since the 2009 inauguration (not including the temporary census workers which were required regardless of who is in office).

I'm sure you didn't mean to mislead by including all the offices not under Obama and congressional Dem's direct control in your numbers even though they had the benefit of actually making you claim appear true.

Re:Let's hope no one needs... (1)

Alomex (148003) | about 10 months ago | (#44030859)

I'm sure you meant to point out this is only true when you include state and local governments

Not at all. The size of the federal government in number of workers and as percentage of GDP has gone down since 2009, even without including the census worker spike. This is at a time when simply by increase of population alone we should expect the number of workers to go up 1% a year to maintain current levels of service.

Re:Let's hope no one needs... (1)

Straif (172656) | about 10 months ago | (#44032045)

When Obama took Office at the beginning of 2009, federal employment was at 4,206,000. As of 2011 (the last year available) Federal workers sits at 4,403,000.

Even using the end of 2009 as your base the number of Federal workers continued increasing month to month until sometime around Sept. 2011 (when numbers finally began to decline) which led to the final number of Federal employees to be only 197,000 more than when Bush left office by the end of 2011.

So while yes, the number of federal employees is slightly less today than it was after Obama's first complete year in office (a year Dem's controlled both the Executive and Legislative branches), it is still significantly larger than when he first entered office and with all the 'obstruction' by House and Senate Republican to prevent many of the Dems plans from being implemented it's debatable who exactly is responsible for that slight decrease.

Re:Let's hope no one needs... (1)

Alomex (148003) | about 10 months ago | (#44033397)

, it is still significantly larger than when he first entered office.

False. The 2009 budget is proposed by the outgoing president, so the number of federal employees in that year was chosen by Bush Jr. In 2009 under the Bush budget the number of federal employees was 4,430,000. The year after, thanks to the surge an extra 11,000 soldiers were kept on payroll leading to a payroll of 4,443,000. In 2011 the number dropped down to 4,403,000 with further drops in 2012 and 2013.

So again, this increase in the size of the federal government under Obama exists only in your imagination.

Re:Let's hope no one needs... (1)

Straif (172656) | about 10 months ago | (#44033543)

The President proposes a federal budget but it is the Senate and House (both controlled by Dems at the time) who actually write and finalized the actual budget. In the case of 2009, Bush was threatening to veto certain Democrat proposals so they delayed the vote until Obama was in office to ensure their budget passed.

The end result is the 2009 budget wasn't actually passed until 5 months into the fiscal year. Little did we know that would be considered speedy for the Senate Dems.

Re:Let's hope no one needs... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#44028287)

Germany isn't thriving any more then Greece or Spain is (or for that matter the USA), they just have better spin doctors and are still managing to ignore the runaway train (for now)

debt is rising, governement has been running a deficit for 40+ years, and the number of working poor (i.e. the modern equivalent of olden day subsistence farmers) is growing steadily, unemployment among youth is at an alltime heigh also, etc, etc, etc.

Unless something changes drastically the entire world economy is heading for a systemcrash. And since most politicians aren't even acknowledging the problem... I give us another 30 years tops (on the other hand it could start just as easily tomorrow).

Re:Let's hope no one needs... (4, Informative)

Kiuas (1084567) | about 10 months ago | (#44027389)

I'm not sure how higher standard of living is connected with adequate food, shelter, and education for the majority of the population. I'm sure with a base line, the rest will follow but you have missed the entire point.

I'm not the guy you were responding to, but I'm gonna give my 2 cents on the matter. I think you kind of missed his point. In your original post you said:

But expecting government to provide something is really harsh on someone trying to provide for themselves. That is how a country becomes wealthy- when the population provides for themselves and the government only keeps the social economic environment that makes it possible to do so.

Implying that the government being involved in these things (ie. welfare). As someone who lives in a welfare state (Finland) and currently works for the public healthcare sector, let me give my thoughts on why I think you're both wrong and right. I know you didn't originally talk about healthcare, but I'm going to be using that as an example because that's what I'm most familiar with and I think health is no different from the other basic necessities (food, shelter, housing) that you mentioned.

So the facts of the current situation are these: The US is spending the most tax dollars per citizens on healthcare and is ranked 33rd in life expectancy[1][2]. Of the countries that are ahead of US, pretty much all have at least some from of socialized healthcare[3]. Even the countries with insurance-systems like Switzerland and Germany have a model where insurance is used like in the States, but it is mandated and regulated to keep the prices in line and the companies are not allowed to reject sick people. Point being: the US is pretty much the only industrialized country in the world where high amounts of people with no insurance (and therefore pretty much no healthcare) still exist, largerly because of the pricing. This is why it is so expensive: since the law still denies ERs from letting people die even if they're uninsured, the hospitals perform the necessary operations which are priced with (often insane) profit margins because traditionally the insurance companies would pay them, and if/when the uninsured individual cannot pay the bill it is footed by the taxpayers.

Note that the most expensive healthcare system after the US is Norway's single payer model but even that is a whopping 34,6 % cheaper than the US model and the country with the highest life expectancy (Japan) has a socialized model that is 63,1 % cheaper![1]. Japan's average life expectancy is 83 compared to 79 of the States. This means, that the Japanese are using 63 % less money and still getting 5 % better performance from their system. These figures leave no room for interpretation: the US model is clearly more expensive, and at the same time less effective in increasing maintaining/increasing national health (note that I'm not talking about wealthy individuals, I'm very much aware that if you happen to be rich you can get excellent care in the States but that is not my point) than pretty much any other system used by any industrialized country, yet American politicians and the insurance lobby does their best to keep the current system in place.

But expecting government to provide something is really harsh on someone trying to provide for themselves.

You're right, but this is true only in cases where the thing being provided - whether it be healthcare, housing or education - is treated as a privilege instead of as a basic right. The US constitution makes no mention of any of these things as far as I'm aware (although I admit to not having read the thing in its entirety) even though you could easily argue that all of them are necessary for "the pursuit of happiness" that's so often used as the core of the american idealism.

If you treat stuff like education and health as a commodity to be sold for profit, of course it's going to be unfair for the ones paying for it themselves to see others being funded by the government while you're working hard for your share. But if you have a system which guarantees everyone the right to these things and puts that before making profit, you're much more likely to get a functional system. This is why the US is currently losing to fellow OECD members on these matters (ie. standard of living). You're still the richest country, but your populace is in general is doing a lot worse than in many other "poorer" countries exactly because of these extremely market-driven policies and the rather irrational fear of government intervention.

For comparison, the Finnish constitution says the following about the matters of education and healthcare[4]:

Section 16 - Educational rights
Everyone has the right to basic education free of charge. Provisions on the duty to receive education are laid down
by an Act.
The public authorities shall, as provided in more detail by an Act, guarantee for everyone equal opportunity to
receive other educational services in accordance with their ability and special needs, as well as the opportunity to
develop themselves without being prevented by economic hardship.
The freedom of science, the arts and higher education is guaranteed.

- -

Section 19 - The right to social security
Those who cannot obtain the means necessary for a life of dignity have the right to receive indispensable
subsistence and care.
Everyone shall be guaranteed by an Act the right to basic subsistence in the event of unemployment, illness, and
disability and during old age as well as at the birth of a child or the loss of a provider.
The public authorities shall guarantee for everyone, as provided in more detail by an Act, adequate social, health and
medical services and promote the health of the population. Moreover, the public authorities shall support families
and others responsible for providing for children so that they have the ability to ensure the wellbeing and personal
development of the children.
The public authorities shall promote the right of everyone to housing and the opportunity to arrange their own.

So to summarize: I think the facts are not on your side in this matter but it of course all depends on whether you think that the government's job is to prioritize the wealth of the nation or the happiness and wellbeing of the entire populace.
----

Sources:

[1]
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_total_health_expenditure_(PPP)_per_capita [wikipedia.org]

[2] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_life_expectancy [wikipedia.org]

[3]
http://truecostblog.com/2009/08/09/countries-with-universal-healthcare-by-date/ [truecostblog.com]

[4]
http://www.finlex.fi/fi/laki/kaannokset/1999/en19990731.pdf [finlex.fi]

Re:Let's hope no one needs... (1)

MyNameIsJohn (2637265) | about 10 months ago | (#44030937)

So to summarize: I think the facts are not on your side in this matter but it of course all depends on whether you think that the government's job is to prioritize the wealth of the nation or the happiness and well being of the entire populace.

This -> The Government providing for and emphasizing the needs of the few over the needs of the many -- , is part of the downfall of American politics. Other countries have tried to limit this shift and some to take it out almost all together, but these few have their claws in really deep and it will take generations to claw their society back from the idealism's of the few.

Re:Let's hope no one needs... (1)

randyleepublic (1286320) | about 10 months ago | (#44036081)

Don't forget that every US citizen is subsidized by the world's financial system - world's reserve currency don't you know...

Re:Let's hope no one needs... (2)

cusco (717999) | about 10 months ago | (#44026643)

the vast majority of people were able to find it and live

Are you really that ignorant of history? Is that a requirement of becoming a libertarian? The vast majority of people experienced famine and/or pestilence at some point before the beginning of the last century, generally several times during their life. A large percentage of the population well into the middle of the 20th century grew up sufficiently malnourished that they would today be considered mentally deficient. The first year of the Depression, the same year that Herbert Hoover boasted of never having missed a meal in his life, 4000 people in Detroit died of malnutrition. I don't expect you to believe me, you probably didn't grow up hearing about how bad the "good old days" really were from your grandparents. You just have this rose-tinted picture of how great it all was back when the government didn't interfere with the glorious free market. For your sake I hope you never have to actually experience that life.

Re:Let's hope no one needs... (1)

sumdumass (711423) | about 10 months ago | (#44051641)

The vast majority of people experienced famine and/or pestilence at some point before the beginning of the last century, generally several times during their life.

And yet the vast majority survived. I never said there wasn't hardships, I said they got by.

The rest of what you say exists only in your mind. Discounting suicides, life expectancy increased during the great depression.

http://www.pnas.org/content/106/41/17290.full [pnas.org]

BTW, the great depression was largely caused by government interference within the free market (price controls and trade wars with Europe). I know that someone you find authoritative like your grandma might have told you different, but pick up a history book and get your information from a real source.

Re:Let's hope no one needs... (1)

cusco (717999) | about 10 months ago | (#44075923)

So the rampant stock and real estate speculation and over-leveraged banks had nothing to do with it? Well I'll be darn. Here I always thought a stock market crash was caused by, well, an overvalued stock market. Instead apparently it has nothing to do with the stock market at all! Amazing the things you learn.

My dad and I both worked with those guys you claim are only in my mind. Mostly farm kids who grew up eating cornmeal mush three times a day because that's all their family could afford. Dumb as dirt, largely unable to do even simple math or write a letter, much less create a family budget or figure out how to save money for retirement.

If you're the type of person who thinks that millions of people facing starvation because it's more profitable to sell the food elsewhere (which has happened repeatedly before governments started stepping in) is acceptable then I doubt that there is a place in civilization for you. This whole "me first, everything for me, greed is good" philosophy is utterly at odds with the ever-expanding sense of community that has created modern civilization.

Re:Let's hope no one needs... (1)

sumdumass (711423) | about 10 months ago | (#44139621)

So the rampant stock and real estate speculation and over-leveraged banks had nothing to do with it? Well I'll be darn. Here I always thought a stock market crash was caused by, well, an overvalued stock market. Instead apparently it has nothing to do with the stock market at all! Amazing the things you learn.

What is your problem? I never said nothing else was involved, but it is a historical fact that government price fixing (in the US) and foreign nationalism (Europe mostly) lead directly to the great depression. Don't sit there and pretend I said a bunch of other things because it doesn't fit the narrative you need in order to justify your ideology.

My dad and I both worked with those guys you claim are only in my mind. Mostly farm kids who grew up eating cornmeal mush three times a day because that's all their family could afford. Dumb as dirt, largely unable to do even simple math or write a letter, much less create a family budget or figure out how to save money for retirement.

and if they died from malnutrition due to the depression as you said, then this is a complete lie. Which is it? Did they die because life was so bad or did they live and you and your dad made friends of them? I would certainly think death is a qualifier for your later statement.

If you're the type of person who thinks that millions of people facing starvation because it's more profitable to sell the food elsewhere (which has happened repeatedly before governments started stepping in) is acceptable then I doubt that there is a place in civilization for you. This whole "me first, everything for me, greed is good" philosophy is utterly at odds with the ever-expanding sense of community that has created modern civilization.

There you go inventing things I supposedly said or believe in without a shred of evidence. I'm sorry I even bothered with your delusional ass in the first place. Nothing you say can be trusted as you proved that you make crap up as needed right here.

I do not really care if someone is starving because food is being sold somewhere else. That has nothing to do with what was said. History also refutes your premise largely because before government and the infrastructure brought about by it, food did not travel well or keep long and had to be created and sold locally. It is government that created the ability to sell food elsewhere while people around you starve in the first place. Anyways, here is a hint, if it is not yours, you are not entitled to it. If someone wants to sell something 2 thousand miles away and it is theirs, you being 10 feet away is meaningless. If you want it so bad, get off your ass and make it yourself or find another supplier.

Re:Let's hope no one needs... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#44034641)

That is how a small elite becomes wealthy- when the population slaves for scraps and the government only keeps the social economic environment that makes it possible to do so.

FTFY. You are welcome.

Re:Let's hope no one needs... (1)

uninformedLuddite (1334899) | about 10 months ago | (#44035387)

Now enter education- kids graduate from high school knowing less about more things then a high school graduate in 1860.

Don't you mean a fifth grader from 1860?

Re:Let's hope no one needs... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#44042305)

"... knowing less about more things th[a]n a high school graduate in 1860."

Yes, I think I see what you mean.

Re:Let's hope no one needs... (1)

TapeCutter (624760) | about 10 months ago | (#44024803)

Here's the thing, archaeology is everywhere because humans have been everywhere since well before agriculture was invented, the oldest cities in the world are built on the rubble and bones of our ancestors, we have left a distinct and indelible mark in the geological strata called the "Anthropocean". Western European countries now routinely do archaeological surveys for all major earth works such as roads, etc. They can't save every brick and shard of pottery but they do get a to look at much larger "ditches" than they could possibly dig by themselves. Also (thanks to shows like time team) the actual workers on the ground are now more enlightened about these things. Remote sensing is new and is showing signs of triggering an explosion of knowledge in archaeology. What they are finding in the prehistoric era is changing our notion of the scale of their civilizations, they were far more interconnected and organized than my 1970's history teacher could have dreamed.

Cue the white gorillas (-1, Offtopic)

TheRealHocusLocus (2319802) | about 10 months ago | (#44023995)

cue the white gorillas
with stone paddles
that smash yer head
and squrt yer brains
and make yer eyeballs fly out
unless yer skull is made of Crichton

work (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#44024015)

Since I started with my online business I earn $62 every 15 minutes. It sounds unbelievable but you wont forgive yourself if you don't check it out. www.Dub50.cm

Hey... (2)

Greyfox (87712) | about 10 months ago | (#44024081)

Isn't this the start of the plot for "Alien Vs. Predator"?

Re:Hey... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#44030943)

Nope, it's the sequel to Congo [imdb.com]. This time, they'll have rabid pileated gibbons and drone strikes.

Thank dog timothy told us the most important part. (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#44024115)

The archaeologist were Australian. Because that's the only part about which anyone cares, right? Here be www.slashdot.au

BOOM-CHIKKA-BOOM-CHIKKA

RA! RA! RA!

GOOOOOOOOO, AUSTRALIA!

Re:Thank dog timothy told us the most important pa (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#44024611)

As an Australian I laugh at your pathetic attempt at cheering. Australians have a far more complex method of cheering.

it goes:

OZZIE OZZIE OZZIE!!!! (Shouted by a one supporter as loud as he possibly can)

to which we all reply

OI OI OI

None of this bookchika ra ra ra crap.
We are more creative than that!

Captcha: Sanction

Re:Thank dog timothy told us the most important pa (2)

_merlin (160982) | about 10 months ago | (#44024789)

And he neglected to mention that the archaeologists found the city using frikkin' lasers! That would've made the story far more appealing straight away.

Re:Thank dog timothy told us the most important pa (1)

laejoh (648921) | about 10 months ago | (#44026513)

I can see it now, the archaeologists fighting sharks in their arms trying to target the frikking' lasers!

In other (related) news... (-1, Flamebait)

Ira Sponsible (713467) | about 10 months ago | (#44024899)

In other news, Archaeologists have recently deciphered the most ancient text ever written by man. It was a list of most fuckable animals that Adam wrote before God created Eve.

Re:In other (related) news... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#44035603)

To: the humorless asshat who marked this as flamebait:

It's called a joke. You may not understand why anyone would think it's funny, since you're a humorless asshat, but I think it's funny. In fact, I might even consider it a bit insightful, and would mark it so if I had the mod points.

Sincerely,
Satan.

Why tell? (4, Interesting)

PuddleBoy (544111) | about 10 months ago | (#44025837)

Wouldn't it have been better if they did NOT announce to the world that they found this new city until they *knew* that the gov't could secure it against looters?

I mean, now that this 'unlooted site' has been announced, isn't it just a matter of time before someone loots it?

Re:Why tell? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#44027079)

How do you know they didn't do just that?

Re:Why tell? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#44030133)

It was his 'misunderstanding'.

Re:Why tell? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#44033245)

That is exactly what is being done in South America. A team recently discovered a huge network of cities and other ruins in a very inhospitable (today) part of the Amazon. They have announced that they found it and that LIDAR was used to find it but they have not given any indications of where it actually is. They are hoping to get in and study the untouched ruins before the looters can get there. I wish them all the luck in the world.

Signed AC
(Hi Mr. NSA!!)

thanks for the article (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#44031039)

nice to see some stories from asia related to the discovery ancient sites. thanks for posting

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