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Harvard Study Suggests Drone Strikes Can Disrupt Terror Groups

sp3d2orbit Re:Foolish, foolish (429 comments)

> If we want peace with the Muslim world, we need to go home and quit treating them like subjects who are illegally camped on "our" oil supply

Not true. For example, after Gulf War I there was a lot of hostility from the Muslim world when the USA failed to kill Saddam Hussein. At that time the US was considered culpable for "abandoning our allies" and thus justified terrorist revenge.

The problem is that certain non-governmental organizations are acting in an extra-legal manner by using terrorism to achieve goals. If the countries do not want US presence they have every right to expel the US from their soil. Just look at Iraq's recent decision to have all US troops out immediately.

However, if the governing body of a country desires a US presence and a non-governmental organization decides to use violence to oppose that presence then the application of force either by the the governing body or the US on behalf of the governing body is essential to ensure the rule of law. Caving to their demands or ignoring their actions is not an acceptable outcome.

more than 2 years ago
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Asimov's Psychohistory Becoming a Reality?

sp3d2orbit Re:That is no prediction (291 comments)

> On the gripping hand, what the fuck are we actually doing over there anyway?

We are enforcing Afghanistan's 1941 signing of the Declaration of Universal Right of Man. Hopefully by providing an environment where an alternative to the Taliban can establish power we will provide a lasting buffer against their tyranny.

For those who say it isn't our business to protect the rights of others, that line of thinking was invalidated by WWII and previously in the Civil war.

more than 2 years ago
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Modest Proposal For Stopping Hackers: Get Them Girlfriends

sp3d2orbit Re:HEY! Not cool. (566 comments)

I'm always surprised when engineering / math types here on Slashdot completely fail to grasp economic concepts because they too are based on mathematics.

Let me reframe the problem in a way that a math person can understand: the economy is a chaotic system. Any attempt to mathematically constrain that system from the top down will simply cause the system to react in a way that foils those constraints in unpredictable ways.

The inability to control the chaotic system will eventually lead to more and more compensating controls until the entire system of controls breaks.

In other words, the economy does not function because of regulations, it functions in spite of regulations.

more than 2 years ago
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How Technology Promotes World Peace

sp3d2orbit Re:Sounds like Pre-WW1 Talk (152 comments)

In the early 1900's an Italian mathematician named Vilfredo Pareto explained the concentration of wealth in the hands of a few using a mathematical model now named after him. He and a sympathetic politician named Benito Mussolini set out to re-engineer society so that it was more fair and equitable. Similar forces, with equally noble goals transformed Russia and Germany in their own attempts to eliminate the gap between rich and poor.

The rise of warfare and the end of prosperity is the direct result of the rise of competing economic systems. An emergent behavior rooted in jealousy and entitlement will eventually destroy the current round of peace and prosperity as well.

more than 2 years ago
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Entrepreneurs Watch As Crowdvesting Bill Stalls In Senate

sp3d2orbit Ordinary Americans Shouldn't be Allowed to Invest (182 comments)

Until Americans get much, much better at basic mathematics and risk management in general, it is foolish to allow the average person to invest in a venture capital manner -- and history is a guide as too why.

During the years 2000 - 2007 millions upon millions of Americans took out first, second, and third mortgages to invest in real estate -- a tangible product that historically is a good investment. They all signed loan documents containing something called "The Truth in Lending Act" disclosure that says in very clear, very understandable terms "You are being loaned money at 1-2%. Your interest rate can eventually increase to 7-8%. This loan may cost you WAY more than you can ever afford to repay." Everyone who signed a loan document during those years saw that document, saw the possibility that they could get screwed, and said "I'm going to get rich".

When the bottom of the market fell out people didn't blame themselves for ignoring the Truth in Lending Act disclosure. They didn't blame themselves for ignoring the mathematics behind interest rates and monthly payments. They didn't blame themselves for not having money management skills and avoiding overextending themselves. Instead they blamed the bankers and society in general. Way easier.

If the average person is allowed to invest in venture capital schemes then a lot of them are going to lose their asses because most businesses don't work out. Until we live in a society where it is no longer OK to say things like "I just don't understand math" then it is not OK to allow those same people to risk their savings on long shot gambles. Because, as we have already seen, society will inevitably have to bail those same people out when things go bad.

more than 2 years ago
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Candidate Gingrich Pushes a Moon Base, Other Space Initiatives

sp3d2orbit Re:Going to the moon, with what money?? (602 comments)

Looks to me like the graph says > 40% of the GDP is spent by the government. Again, how much do you want to be spent on socialized programs, 100%?

What's the difference between military spending and welfare? At least military spending supports engineers, scientists, and people working for a living. Welfare money may as well be thrown down the drain.

about 2 years ago
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BASF Moves GM Plant Research From Europe To US

sp3d2orbit Re:US doesn't mandate disclosure (288 comments)

You are not understanding my replies if you think that I have no objections to your details. As I have said over and over again: you don't provide any real solutions, you ignore basic economics, and your ideas are not grounded in reality.

If a crop can be selectively breed to have a certain trait, can it also be genetically modified to have that trait?

Are you proposing that Africans clear more land for planting? Why not just use GMO crops on the same amount of land?

Selectively breed crops cannot survive in the wild. They do not contribute to biodiversity. GMO crops can be adapted much quicker to changing conditions like pesticide resistance.

Non-GMO crops require more pesticides and herbicides, pollute the ground water more, require more land to be cleared for growing area, and do not contribute to biodiversity.

about 2 years ago
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Candidate Gingrich Pushes a Moon Base, Other Space Initiatives

sp3d2orbit Re:Going to the moon, with what money?? (602 comments)

True socialist states are states like Greece, Ireland, Portugal, France, Italy, and Spain -- all countries that are currently or will soon be embroiled in a debt crisis. Why would you advocate the same policies for the US?

BRIC countries do not owe their growth to socialist policies. Quite the opposite -- each has enjoyed significant growth because of less government involvement over the last few decades.

more than 2 years ago
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Candidate Gingrich Pushes a Moon Base, Other Space Initiatives

sp3d2orbit Re:Going to the moon, with what money?? (602 comments)

And I think we can surmize, given the US's current level of social-capitalist involvement, as compared to the rest of the modern world (G7 and BRIC), that we are not anywhere remotely close to the excessively socialist side.

The US government spends over 40% of the GDP each year on an increasingly upward trend:

http://www.usgovernmentspending.com/us_20th_century_chart.html

At what point (75%, 85%, 100%) would you say the US government is "socialist enough". Keep in mind that at its peak the USSR only directed 45% of their command economy.

more than 2 years ago
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Candidate Gingrich Pushes a Moon Base, Other Space Initiatives

sp3d2orbit Re:Going to the moon, with what money?? (602 comments)

Detroit failed because unions (socialism) made manufacturing unprofitable and it shifted overseas.

New Orleans failed because it is > 20 feet below sea level.

Neither are an example of failed capitalist policies.

more than 2 years ago
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BASF Moves GM Plant Research From Europe To US

sp3d2orbit Re:US doesn't mandate disclosure (288 comments)

You are personally attacking me. I have refrained from attacking you personally even though I find your opinions very naive.

You say things like "distribution is the problem". As though building more roads will suddenly feed people. Wrong.

You ignore basic economics: supply and demand. The amount of food grown in Europe (or anywhere) directly affects the price of food in Africa.

You ignore basic mathematics. It takes more land to grow organic food than it does to grow food with chemicals. More land means less supply. Less supply means higher prices. Higher prices mean more people in Africa starve. Europe is not an island all to itself.

You don't propose any solutions that are rooted in science, engineering, or economics. You simply point to articles written by people who are trying to manipulate public opinion for their own greedy goals.

You seem to know nothing about genetic engineering. It is many times faster to engineer a plant than it is to selectively breed a plant.

more than 2 years ago
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BASF Moves GM Plant Research From Europe To US

sp3d2orbit Re:US doesn't mandate disclosure (288 comments)

There is no need to attack me as person -- I disagree with your point of view but I do not lower myself to insulting your person -- please grant me the same courtesy.

If you could point to any sort of scientific references I could most easily be swayed.

GMO has no disadvantage compared to selectively breed crops. The anti-GMO community is motivated by greed: they want to protect European farmers from lower priced imports. The anti-GMO community does not care about feeding the poor in Africa or India, they would rather see those people starve than to see a European farmer put out of business.

GMO food requires less pesticide and herbicide to grow. GMO crops can be more quickly adapted to insects and herbicide resilience because the genes can be targeted directly. Poor people will benefit from GMO food by 1) reducing the amount of fertilizer and pesticide they have to buy 2) increasing the amount of food they can grow on their land and 3) lowering the cost of the food they buy.

Organic farming is a selfish, inefficient abomination. By abandoning modern farming techniques organic farmers directly starve the poor. Those who eat organic food do so out of pure selfishness and disregard for the less advantaged.

more than 2 years ago
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BASF Moves GM Plant Research From Europe To US

sp3d2orbit Re:US doesn't mandate disclosure (288 comments)

First, GMO requires less pesticide and herbicide than non-GMO crops. Your statements about water pollution and Roundup are wrong.

Secondly, genetic modification works faster than selective breeding. GMO crops can be adapted to resistance more quickly than selective breeding.

Third, there are starving people in the world because there is not enough cheap food. GMO is the only way to grow more food on the same amount of land WITHOUT more pesticides and herbicides.

What is your solution to world hunger without GMO?

more than 2 years ago
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BASF Moves GM Plant Research From Europe To US

sp3d2orbit Re:US doesn't mandate disclosure (288 comments)

I read your responses, but they fail to answer my basic questions. I am thinking it is because English is not your native language. This is why I have simplified the question:

How do you propose to grow more food without GMO? (Feel free to pick one)

a) Do not grow more food and continue to allow people to starve to death
b) Clear more forested land to plant more crops
c) Use more fertilizer and pesticides to increase crop yields.
d) ?????

more than 2 years ago
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BASF Moves GM Plant Research From Europe To US

sp3d2orbit Re:US doesn't mandate disclosure (288 comments)

Since you seem to have a difficult time understanding and writing English, I will simplify the question:

How do you propose growing more food without GMO?

more than 2 years ago
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BASF Moves GM Plant Research From Europe To US

sp3d2orbit Re:US doesn't mandate disclosure (288 comments)

I understand where you are coming from: you feel like corporations are evil, that capitalism is a failed and corrupt enterprise, and that only the state can save the average citizen from the abuses perpetrated by the 1%? Right?

The problem is that you are ruled by emotion and gut reactions and have no sense of reason. Lets look at this specific example to show how you are being 100% irrational:

1) I have researched the term you asked me to research. That research led me to a scientific study that contradicted your claims. I asked you to cite a counter study -- which you dismissed. I am open to persuasion but you are not. This is irrational.

2) The study was created by a pro-GMO organization. The GM Genocide articles were created by anti-GMO organizations. You accept the anti-GMO material as truth yet dismiss the scientific study as propaganda. This is irrational.

3) Your thought process is irrational. For example:
    You: GMO destroys biodiversity.
    Me: How?
    You: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Malus_sieversii
You failed to answer my question: How does GMO destroy biodiversity?

4) You said Malus sieversii is "incredibly resilient". Wikipedia says it is "almost extinct". Your statement is irrational.

5) You keep saying that GMO foods require extra pesticides and causes extra environmental damage. According to Wikipedia ("Round-up Ready" crops): Round up is less likely to end up in water supplies than the alternatives (used on non-GMO crops) like atrazine, metribuzin, and alachlor. Do you understand that your statement is just plain wrong? If not, why?

A couple more items in your post don't make any rational sense to me, perhaps you could clarify:

6) "The only reason GMO is used...people that have no choice". Why don't these people have a choice? Can't they keep using their existing seeds?

7) "GMO product don't crate biodiversity". Why not? Does selective breeding create biodiversity?

8) "GMO is just a crap that destroy the planet" How does GMO destroy the planet?

more than 2 years ago
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BASF Moves GM Plant Research From Europe To US

sp3d2orbit Re:US doesn't mandate disclosure (288 comments)

I searched for GM Genocide because I have not heard of this term. I did find articles blaming GM food for Indian suicides. I also found this scientific study claiming that the suicide rates are unchanged:

http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2008/nov/05/gmcrops-india

Perhaps you could cite a counter scientific study?

As to biodiversity, I don't see how it applies at all - unless we completely abandon farming and go back to foraging. Do you think that modern day wheat or apple trees can survive in the wild without humanity? Almost every crop is the by product of selective breeding and almost every crop exists because of human maintenance. Or do you want to abandon selective breeding as well?

GMO simply refines the same process used by farmers and ranchers for thousands of years. In fact, GM would allow farmers to customize a crop to a specific growing region and climate creating more "biodiversity" than the current selective breeding approach.

more than 2 years ago
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BASF Moves GM Plant Research From Europe To US

sp3d2orbit Re:US doesn't mandate disclosure (288 comments)

The European Union spends a full 40% of their budget, around $70 billion dollars on farm subsidies. The US spends $20 billion dollars (Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Agricultural_subsidy). The EU spends 3x as much on subsidies even though it has 1/3 of land area under cultivation (Source: http://www.ers.usda.gov/publications/WRS0404/WRS0404b.pdf)

Per acre Europe spends 9X as much as the US on farm subsidies. So no, your correction is not accurate at all.

more than 2 years ago
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BASF Moves GM Plant Research From Europe To US

sp3d2orbit Re:US doesn't mandate disclosure (288 comments)

The ban is on IMPORTING GMO foods -- I said nothing about growing them in Europe. Your argument about biodiversity is a complete non-sequitor.

India grows no GMO foods -- if the farmers there are devastated then it has nothing to do with GMO. Perhaps GMO would be a benefit to those farmers.

more than 2 years ago
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BASF Moves GM Plant Research From Europe To US

sp3d2orbit Re:The Food Supply (288 comments)

It is simple Supply and Demand -- an economic law that you may or may not be aware of. The Demand for food is pretty much constant. By going organic you reduce the Supply. Any first year economics student can tell you that decreasing Supply without decreasing Demand will result in higher prices. Higher food prices means more people starve.

I'm not telling you not to eat organic. If you feel like the marginal health advantage of eating organically is more important that low prices for the hungry then go for it. If you feel like the marginal health advantage of eating organically is worth clearing extra forest then go for it. If you feel like you are more important than other people, then eat organically.

more than 2 years ago

Submissions

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Software Engineer Flies Plane into IRS Building

sp3d2orbit sp3d2orbit writes  |  more than 4 years ago

sp3d2orbit (81173) writes "A software engineer crashed his small plane into an IRS office building containing nearly 200 IRS employees. He left a suicide note explaining his frustrations with the IRS, the recent bailouts, and the Catholic Church, among others. In the online message, the writer notes how during past times of crisis, like during the Great Depression, some of the wealthy who lost everything were known to have killed themselves. "Now, when the wealthy f--- up, the poor get to die for the mistakes ... isn't that a clever, tidy solution... Sadly, though I spent my entire life trying to believe it wasn't so, but violence not only is the answer, it is the only answer.""
Link to Original Source

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