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How Voter Shortsightedness Skews Elections

Pretzalzz Uh, no (269 comments)

Are you better off now than you were 4 years ago is a horrible metric to judge politicians. Policies take a while to implement so a really bad first year that you've inherited could overwhelm the next 33.5 months. The economic cycle can overpower policies anyway. And there are other issues besides personal well-being which seems to over-focus on economic issues. 4 years is both too arbitrary a time frame and too short of a time frame.

about 3 months ago

What Developers Can Learn From Healthcare.gov

Pretzalzz Re:Have Patience (267 comments)

You need to sign up by December 15th to get coverage January 1st. But your general point still stands.

about 7 months ago

Don't Fly During Ramadan

Pretzalzz Re: Proud? (1233 comments)

How exactly are you judging countries? If you are judging by border control/customs, then I can believe that the US is the second worst. US customs is the biggest hassle even for US citizens, and they try to be nice and efficient for US citizens. But that hardly is a decent judge of a country as a whole.

about 8 months ago

Is Europe's Recession Really Over?

Pretzalzz Re:Betteridge is actually wrong this time (159 comments)

Unless the Europeans are a hell of a lot better at determining these numbers then we are, they are sure to be revised. More than once. There is no guarantee that 5 years from now 2nd quarter 2013 EU GDP will still be positive. For instance US fourth quarter 2012 GDP was initially -0.1%, revised to +0.1%, revised to +0.4%.

about 8 months ago

New Doctor Who Actor To Be Revealed This Sunday

Pretzalzz Re:John Hurt (249 comments)

They haven't been on Syfy for a while. They are on BBC America in the US and I've never heard a suggestion that they are edited.

about 9 months ago

Obama Wants To Fund Clean Energy Research With Oil & Gas Funds

Pretzalzz Re:Hopelessly off-target (409 comments)

There is a difference between a tax credit and a tax deduction. A legitimate business expense is a tax deduction and will save you whatever you spend times your margnial tax rate. A tax credit on the other hand will save you 100% of your cost on your taxes.

about a year ago

NASA IG Paints Bleak Picture For Agency Projects

Pretzalzz Re:Do the math. Not that big of deal (73 comments)

Try again. Sequestration hit 5 months into the year. Assuming a relatively constant spending of money, $894 million is 8.6% of $10.4 billion[which is 7/12 of 17.8 billion]. This makes senses as it is the commonly quoted percentage for every agency facing cuts. But all of that budget isn't really cuttable. Say half of the budget is uncuttable. That leaves you needing to suddenly cut 20% out of the budget that is cuttable. This is where you get 1 day a week furloughs and whole programs/services eliminated like we've been hearing about in other agencies.

about a year ago

All of Nate Silver's State-Level Polling Predictions Proved True

Pretzalzz Re:Math (576 comments)

They haven't finished counting the vote. Mostly on the West Coast. CA/WA/OR/CO/ID/MT and the northeast[CT/NH/ME principally]. These are almost all states Obama won except ID/MT. Obama's final margin is likely to be over 3% when all is said and done. So the polls shouldn't be analyzed/graded too precisely yet.

about a year and a half ago

Barack Obama Retains US Presidency

Pretzalzz Re:Kill the Electoral College please... (1576 comments)

It's not that simple. How do you get states not participating in the compact to cooperate with a recount? How do you get a state not in the compact to count all provisional ballots when their result isn't particularly close? How do you have a national popular vote when voting eligibility rules vary by state? Is it fair to compare raw votes in a state with early voting and same day registration and a state that votes on one day with narrow absentee rules and you have to register a month ahead of time? If you think none of that will make too much of a difference, remember that the whole point for the change is for close elections. Any margin greater than 1-2% in the popular vote will invariably result in the 'correct' electoral college outcome.

about a year and a half ago

Nate Silver's Numbers Indicate Probable Obama Win, World Agrees

Pretzalzz Re:votevotevote.net's Sample Size (881 comments)

You might find the BBC's poll slightly more scientific. Obama won 50-9, losing only Pakistan among the 21 countries surveyed.

about a year and a half ago

Libertarian Candidate Excluded From Debate For Refusing Corporate Donations

Pretzalzz For perspective (627 comments)

For perspective of how low a bar $50,000 is, open secrets has the FEC data for the race. Both of the top 2 candidates have raised over $1.4 million dollars as of 2 months ago, and have likely raised a bunch more since. Even excluding PAC/other money they have raised $866k/$1.22m.

about a year and a half ago

Why WikiLeaks Is Worth Defending

Pretzalzz Re:We don't need Wikileaks (257 comments)

But the BBC is broadcast in the US! From my local npr station: midnight-5am 7 days a week "BBC world service", m-f 5am-6am "BBC World Update", m-f 9am-10am, m-f 8pm-9pm "The World"[a collaboration of the BBC and PRI]. That's 1/3 of the programming time monday through friday including 2 prime hours. It's on pbs on tv 7:30pm-8pm. And of course its on BBC America. So you can hardly say the BBC is better than news broadcast in the US when the BBC itself broadcasts in the US.

about a year and a half ago

Will Speed Limits Inhibit Autonomous Car Adoption?

Pretzalzz Re:Lessons from the Autobahn (650 comments)

From Pennsylvania vehicle code:


Driving in right lane.--

(1)Except as provided in paragraph (2) and unless otherwise posted, upon all limited access highways having two or more lanes for traffic moving in the same direction, all vehicles shall be driven in the righthand lanes when available for traffic except when any of the following conditions exist:
(i)When overtaking and passing another vehicle proceeding in the same direction.
(ii)When traveling at a speed greater than the traffic flow.
(iii)When moving left to allow traffic to merge.
(iv)When preparing for a left turn at an intersection, exit or into a private road or driveway when such left turn is legally permitted.
(2)Unless otherwise posted, no vehicle or combination over 10,000 pounds may be driven in the left-hand lane of a limited access highway having three or more lanes for traffic moving in the same direction except when preparing for a left turn at an intersection, an exit or into a private road or driveway when such left turn is legally permitted

You are also supposed to get in the left lane if emergency personnel are on the shoulder which is defined loosely enough to mean virtually any official looking vehicle on the shoulder.
I'd be shocked if this wasn't the law in all 50 states. As you say it's not enforced, but it is slightly more explicit than 'obstructing traffic'.

about 2 years ago

DHS Will Now Vet UK Air Passengers To Mexico, Canada, Cuba

Pretzalzz canada and the porous border (417 comments)

I suspect the flights to Canada have more to due with the fact that the border between Canada and the US is fairly porous. The US is concerned with people getting into Canada and then sneaking across the largely undefended border so in the past couple of years they have been stepping up coordination of border/immigration security. Since this is a bilateral effort, what I suspect is going on is that the Canadian government is telling airlines they have to clear their passengers with US's DHS.

about 2 years ago

Firefox: In With the New, Out With the Compatibility

Pretzalzz works for me (366 comments)

None of the extensions I use break with 'every' revision. Most I don't even think have needed to be upgraded from 8.0 to the current 13.0a2[Aurora], and it updates Firefox essentially every time I restart Firefox. It makes me think TinyMCE are the one's doing something wrong.

about 2 years ago

Bring Back the 40-Hour Work Week

Pretzalzz work week in reality (969 comments)

Average weekly hours of all employees in USA per bls.gov: 34.5 hours. It was 33.8 hours at the height of the recession so it is the inversion of the truth that employers have employees work overtime to avoid hiring more people. 34.5 hours is the pre-recession level so employers have likely maxed out on increasing hours to existing workers.

more than 2 years ago

Biologists Debunk the "Rotting Y Chromosome" Theory

Pretzalzz Re:link to the source, please (248 comments)

That's because the original paper asks you to pay $32 to view it unless you are subscribed[or your IP is subscribed ie by your University]. A subscription is $199 a year.

more than 2 years ago

The Zuckerberg Tax

Pretzalzz Re:What a country! (1065 comments)

In that case why would the cost-basis reset? If the argument was that she was always the owner of the stock than her cost-basis should still be the same as when Steve Jobs was alive. If the cost-basis reset, this implies that she did 'inherit' the shares; she was just shielded from having to pay tax from the spousal exemption.

more than 2 years ago

Congress's Techno-Ignorance No Longer Funny

Pretzalzz Re:You Americans need more parties. (477 comments)

America already has more than 2 parties. From wikipedia:

Other caucuses are organized political factions with a common ideological orientation:

        On the Democratic side, there is the Blue Dog Coalition (conservative Democrats), New Democrat Coalition (moderate Democrats), Congressional Progressive Caucus (liberal and progressive Democrats), and Democratic Freedom Caucus (libertarian Democrats).
        On the Republican side, there is the Republican Study Committee (conservative politics Republicans) and the Liberty Caucus, which is sometimes called the Republican Liberty Caucus (libertarian Republicans). The Tea Party Caucus also has 60 Republican members in the House of Representatives and four in the Senate.

'organized political faction with a common ideological orientation' - In any other country that would be called a party. There are legislative bodies in the USA where the leader of the body is of the 'minority' party because enough members of the 'majority' party couldn't even be bothered to vote for a leader from their own party.

more than 2 years ago

Are You Better At Math Than a 4th (or 10th) Grader?

Pretzalzz Re:Yes (845 comments)

FCAT are the right sample tests. Slightly harder, but I'd still expect any halfway intelligent person to get 90+% of them correct.

more than 2 years ago


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