Announcing: Slashdot Deals - Explore geek apps, games, gadgets and more. (what is this?)

Thank you!

We are sorry to see you leave - Beta is different and we value the time you took to try it out. Before you decide to go, please take a look at some value-adds for Beta and learn more about it. Thank you for reading Slashdot, and for making the site better!



Skeptics Would Like Media To Stop Calling Science Deniers 'Skeptics'

dfenstrate Oh boy, rewind to the Spanish Inquisition! (627 comments)

First, pointing a finger and screeching 'DENIER' seems a lot like pointing the finger and screeching 'HERETIC', lending credence to the whole environmentalism-as-a-substitute-religion theory.
Beyond that, these scientists might find more traction for their beliefs if they could get away from the folks who are peddling 'solutions' for AGW. You know, the activists who want to make energy so expensive that poor people will have to live in dark, cold homes, and gasoline so expensive that they have to stay in those cold, dark homes.
I imagine, however, that any activist or scientist advocating the use of 'denier/(heritic)' has substituted Gaia for God, and would be very happy to burn their opponents at the stake.
As for me, I'm not qualified to analyze the science. Instead, I'll consider the matter when the people who say it's a problem act like it's a problem. Until their personal conduct matches their words- buying carbon credits ('indulgences') doesn't count- then it's just a continuation of prior climate panics.

2 days ago

US Links North Korea To Sony Hacking

dfenstrate Re:How do we know? (182 comments)

Why should we believe anything the "senior intelligence officials" tell us? They have a profound record of lying.

Occam's Razor. It's pretty clear to the rest of us that a hero-worshiping despotic regime like North Korea might lash out against a company- or movie theaters- making a comedy about killing their national hero/despot.

That leads to my question- are you posting from Pyongyang?

3 days ago

US Links North Korea To Sony Hacking

dfenstrate Sony's hack is their problem. Threats, though.... (182 comments)

I don't really give a hoot about Sony getting hacked. What I do care about is Americans being threatened for lawful activity by agents of a foreign government. (That is, 9/11 style attacks for screening The Interview.) That threat made what was Sony's problem into a national issue that our government ought to deal with. Unfortunately I don't see much chance of the D.C. set showing any spine or defending any principles.

3 days ago

Feds Plan For 35 Agencies To Collect, Share, Use Health Records of Americans

dfenstrate Oh, look, another lefty enamored with himself. (209 comments)

Yes, people really are stupid. Give them something to be angry about, and they'll vote against their own interests.

It's rather presumptive of you, and every other Democrat, to pretend to know people's interests better than they do. It's part of the unmistakable arrogance that comes from the left, and was perfectly displayed by Gruber. You and your fellow leftists are cut from the same cloth as every other human, but you whip each other up with flattery on how kind, intelligent and compassionate you are for simply being on the left. Whether ruin or prosperity follows your policy actions isn't terribly important. You had the best intentions, you see, and the books can always be cooked after the fact to hide any negative news that doesn't fit the narrative.

about two weeks ago

CIA Lied Over Brutal Interrogations

dfenstrate Re:Your neighbor tried to kill you, but he's idiot (772 comments)

(I'm not studied up enough on the topic at hand- 'enhanced interrogation'- to condemn it or defend it.)

I realize this is a distracting thing to say, and I don't support torture, and it appears we've used it, and it's a crime that no one in power will unfortunately ever be held accountable to. My intent was more to say that I haven't RTFA or summary report; and I was responding only to the position of 'let's just ignore them because they're so terrible at killing us.'

about two weeks ago

CIA Lied Over Brutal Interrogations

dfenstrate Re:Oh bullshit on a stick (772 comments)

There is no such thing as a terrorist. But it must be nice to see the world in black and white, saves you the trouble of having to actually think about or empathize with other humans. "

If not terrorists, how about Barbarians who must be kept at bay? The people who think we need to empathize with barbarians are often under the following mistaken impressions:

1) Westerners are the only real evil in the world today.

2) Westerners are the only people who act; who have agency. All other people do not have their own plans, thoughts and ideals- they merely react to what westerners do. They are automatons we can control through correct choices.

about two weeks ago

CIA Lied Over Brutal Interrogations

dfenstrate Your neighbor tried to kill you, but he's idiotic (772 comments)

I prefer this memo: http://www.theatlantic.com/daily-dish/archive/2007/05/-versch-auml-rfte-vernehmung/228158/

Part of being the "good guys" means NOT being the "bad guys".

More people die in traffic accidents EVERY YEAR than the "terrorists" have ever killed here. So why give up a morally superior position to "fight" people who pose almost no threat to anyone outside their own countries?

I prefer to discourage people from attacking my countrymen, and simultaneously limit their capabilities to do so. That often means killing the people who are trying to kill us, until they get the idea that trying to kill us is a bad idea. Their incompetence in killing us does not erase the trespass. People who get into accidents have their insurance rates go up. People who try to kill us get killed. Actions have consequences.

If your neighbor was trying to kill you, repeatedly, would you tolerate it? Would you find the milk in your cereal curdled one day from poison, push it away, then look out your window and say 'Ah, nice try Mohammed! Maybe next time!.' I mean, you might notice that next crude tripwire before you set off the IED in your hedges.

You wouldn't tolerate it. You'd have him thrown in jail at the first try. Back to the national scale, if the people trying to kill us are in countries that will have them thrown in jail, great. If not, well, now we're back to the concept of war between distinct states or peoples. The fact that one side is weak and incompetent does not mean they get to keep trying without reprisal.

What you seem to advocate- ignoring attacks by barbarians as just another risk in modern society- is in it's own special moral vacuum. I'm having a hard time fathoming how such a dereliction could seem morally superior to you, and I can only guess your education has been a steady diet of 'Western civilization is the worst thing that ever happened to the world.' That sort of 'critical theory' rubbish has been all the rage in higher education for decades.

(I'm not studied up enough on the topic at hand- 'enhanced interrogation'- to condemn it or defend it.)

about two weeks ago

UK Authorities Launching Massive Child Abuse Database

dfenstrate Re:Ambiguous headline (150 comments)

someone has to bear the public's wrath.

Has anyone actually borne the public's wrath over Rotherham scandal? I'm not sure anyone has even resign over it. No, just more tepid 'investigations of failures in processes.'

The problem with Rotherham wasn't that it went 'Undetected for years.' It was detected and ignored, by people who didn't want to seem racist for arresting sexually deviant immigrants. Either that, or they were on the take.

No, Rotherham represents an abject failure of people in society to act in order to protect the young. There's no slouching away the travesty by implying that sort of mass, long ignored child abuse in common elsewhere in the world. England is a country where people know better than to tolerate this, and once had the moral fortitude to do something about it.

about two weeks ago

Coal Plants Get New Lease On Life With Natural Gas

dfenstrate Re: It's still reacting carbon and oxygen... (143 comments)

Keep pushing that canard. No activist has stopped the construction of a new power plant. The problem is financing. Banks don't want to lend the money because of the cost over-runs. That's why the nuclear industry has been pushing the government to guarantee those loans.

1. Shoreham.

2. When building a power plant will involve hundreds of millions of dollars in lawyers fees to keep your sort at bay, that tends to increase cost over-runs. Which your sort then uses as a further argument against nuclear power. (Yes, there are plenty of non-lawyer related cost overruns.)

about a month ago

Coal Plants Get New Lease On Life With Natural Gas

dfenstrate Re: It's still reacting carbon and oxygen... (143 comments)

The more massive generalisations you make the less people should listen to you. You are merely projecting your own ideas of what an environmentalist is to you, and the battering it to death with a bizarre take on logic.

Who is listening to environmentalists these days? There's still a mass of laws and regulations they use to gum up the works constantly, but folks are starting to realize most environmentalists don't care so much about the environment as much as they hate their fellow man and his enjoyment of modern life.

Of course, you folks have your own tinpot dictator in the White House, who is a law unto himself and will probably service his ideological base with economy-crushing diktats.

about a month ago

Black IT Pros On (Lack Of) Racial Diversity In Tech

dfenstrate Re:I judge people by their merit (459 comments)

I had this argument before w.r.t. affirmative action. I asked if they didn't want to be judged on the content of their character instead of the color of their skin, and was told - seriously - that quote is from Martin Luther King Jr., and he's "theirs," so I'm not allowed to use his quote in an argument. No,.. really.

The proper response is to laugh in their face.

about a month ago

How To End Online Harassment

dfenstrate Re:Special treatment (834 comments)

As a matter of reasonable debate- and I'm not going to pretend that everything on the internet needs to be, or ever will be reasonable debate- using slurs when debating religion would be unhelpful and polarizing. There are, however, religions out there whose adherents are unable to weather any criticism gracefully- which means that said religions are fragile and should be subject to even greater scrutiny and criticism.

about a month ago

25th Anniversary: When the Berlin Wall Fell

dfenstrate Re:Reminder of who not to credit (151 comments)

I'm curious how a command economy with what amounts to a captive labor force runs out money.

Hayek wrote a book about this question- The use of knowledge in society. A quote:

The peculiar character of the problem of a rational economic order is determined precisely by the fact that the knowledge of the circumstances of which we must make use never exists in concentrated or integrated form but solely as the dispersed bits of incomplete and frequently contradictory knowledge which all the separate individuals possess.

To put it another way, no communist politburo can centrally manage the knowledge necessary to make a modern economy work. There's simply too much to know. In a market economy, the participants know how to play their role, and how to get what they need to give their customers what they want. They need to know nothing more than that. Millions of such people quietly playing their own role delivers success. In a command economy, the politburo pretends to be able to manage all the knowledge and decision making required throughout the economy- and this is an impossible task.

about a month ago

Mayday PAC Goes 2 For 8

dfenstrate Mayday PAC and their ilk don't want money out.... (224 comments)

....of politics. They want conservative money out of politics. With the entertainment industry in lefty hands and most journalists* little more than Democratic party operatives with bylines, the Democrats have plenty of influence already.

What they want to do is choke out conservative money, because that's the primary way Republicans get heard when leftists control the culture.

Mayday PAC is transparent in this regard- they ran a video contest accepting amateur-made ads supporting their cause. A video attacking Tom Steyer, the left's Koch, won the popular vote by a large margin. They picked another video based on the 'judgement of their panel of experts.'

about a month and a half ago

Labor Department To Destroy H-1B Records

dfenstrate How? Hope n' Change, that's how. (190 comments)

How can the Americans allow their government to turn so rogue, so fast ?

We voted an incompetent, populist demagogue to be President. Then a sycophantic press covered for his failures & malfeasance for his entire first term, and called anyone who dared criticize the president 'racist.'

The republic can survive Obama. He is just one man. The republic cannot long survive a citizenry that would vote for Obama. He set his sights out to fundamentally change the United States, and he's doing that- but it's change for the worse. Hopefully our fellow citizens can learn from the experience.

\Cue angry responses from an unrepentant Obama voters and 'flame-bait' downmods.

about 2 months ago

Hundreds of Thousands Turn Out For People's Climate March In New York City

dfenstrate When the people who say it's a crisis.... (200 comments)

When the people who say it's a crisis act like it's a crisis, then maybe I'll look into the matter. Until then, I have a hard time taking a finger-wagging jet setter seriously. You know the type, they want to make everything more expensive so only the rich can enjoy the benefits of modern life.

"F*ck the poor people who want to stay warm, or get to a job. They should die off anyway, the earth is overpopulated!"

about 3 months ago

To Really Cut Emissions, We Need Electric Buses, Not Just Electric Cars

dfenstrate Re:Compromise: (491 comments)

Humans like cars, not buses.

Americans like cars not buses thanks to decades of marketing getting shoved down their throats. That's led to a chicken/egg situation where it's hard to get around without a car because everyone has them.

Have you ever actually ridden a bus? You sound like someone with little experience riding a bus daily.

about 3 months ago

Bill Gates Wants To Remake the Way History Is Taught. Should We Let Him?

dfenstrate Re:So long as it is consential (363 comments)

I really think school districts ought to start performing audits of the expenses associated with receiving federal money. Some districts have found, for example, that if they opt out of the federal school lunch guidelines championed by the first lady, the programs are quickly back in the black. Less wasted food, more purchases, and no time spent verifying compliance for grant money. The federal funds were insufficient to cover the losses associated with the mandates that came with the money.

I suspect a lot of federal school mandates would end up the same way. Ditching federal money might allow for a number of compliance administrators to be cut from a school district, and give teachers more time to do their jobs.

about 3 months ago

Unesco Probing Star Wars Filming In Ireland

dfenstrate ...compared to the power of ACTING!! (181 comments)

The power to destroy a habitat is nothing next to the power of Money.

One must really wonder what is so special about this location, that they A) feel the need to risk damage to the habitats to film, and B) could not be reproduced in a green screen environment like they do everything else.

Excessive use of green screen likely helped Episodes 1-3 be so terrible- wooden acting being one of the many problems. An actor's performance can only be improved by actually being in the environment their character is supposed to be in.

about 5 months ago



dfenstrate dfenstrate writes  |  about 8 years ago

dfenstrate writes "Long suspected and now proven, Iran is supplying the insurgents in Iraq.

U.S. officials say they have found smoking-gun evidence of Iranian support for terrorists in Iraq: brand-new weapons fresh from Iranian factories. According to a senior defense official, coalition forces have recently seized Iranian-made weapons and munitions that bear manufacturing dates in 2006. This suggests, say the sources, that the material is going directly from Iranian factories to Shia militias, rather than taking a roundabout path through the black market. "There is no way this could be done without (Iranian) government approval," says a senior official.

This comes on the heels of suggestions that we should involve Iran in talks about stabilizing Iraq. Such a plan seems rather foolhardy when they're causing the trouble."

dfenstrate dfenstrate writes  |  more than 8 years ago

dfenstrate writes "The latest New Scientist has an article about an engine that exploits relativity and microwaves to generate thrust. There is a working prototype.
Roger Shawyer has developed an engine with no moving parts that he believes can replace rockets and make trains, planes and automobiles obsolete. ... The device that has sparked their interest is an engine that generates thrust purely from electromagnetic radiation — microwaves to be precise — by exploiting the strange properties of relativity. It has no moving parts, and releases no exhaust or noxious emissions. Potentially, it could pack the punch of a rocket in a box the size of a suitcase. It could one day replace the engines on almost any spacecraft. More advanced versions might allow cars to lift from the ground and hover.
This phenomenon has been observed in particle accelerators:
The forces inside the latest accelerator cavities are so large that they stretch the chambers like plasticine. To counteract this, engineers use piezoelectric actuators to squeeze the cavities back into shape. "I doubt they've ever thought of turning the force to other uses," he says.
I'd like to reserve my hover car now, please."


dfenstrate has no journal entries.

Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?