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Comments

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Days After Shooting, Canada Proposes New Restrictions On and Offline

the eric conspiracy Re:yup! (168 comments)

Unfortunately the Canadian Bill of Rights has some weasel words in it.

2 hours ago
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Days After Shooting, Canada Proposes New Restrictions On and Offline

the eric conspiracy Re:WTF? (168 comments)

I thought cabin fever was the big one up there.

2 hours ago
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Will Fiber-To-the-Home Create a New Digital Divide?

the eric conspiracy Re:digital divide (289 comments)

The people I have seen who don't know how to use computers are generally very poorly educated or are just poor. Usually the two go hand in hand.

Lots of different reasons for this. Laziness is one of the less common.

2 days ago
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Will Fiber-To-the-Home Create a New Digital Divide?

the eric conspiracy Re:Third World America (289 comments)

A lot of what you describe is voluntary, and regional. For example the state of Massachusetts has one of the best education systems in the world.

http://www.doe.mass.edu/news/n...

Other aspects of it have a lot to do with the bimodal population distribution, for example the lack of passenger rail. If you look at other aspect of the US rail system for example freight you will quickly find the US is absolutely world leading. For example the US ships 10x more freight by rail than Europe does.

Ultimately what counts is economic output. There is no indication whatsoever that the US economy is declining to third world standards. If you spent some time in the third world as I have you'd find the idea ridiculous.

2 days ago
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Ebola Does Not Require an "Ebola Czar," Nor Calling Up the National Guard

the eric conspiracy Re:I wish they'd focus more on things like MRSA (383 comments)

Part of the problem with the recent agency flubs is lack of focus on the part of the agency, something that is the responsibility of Congress.

For example the Secret Service was once a part of the Treasury Department, and had a relatively narrow set of missions. However with the creation of the monumental cluster fuck known as the DHS, the Secret Service was uprooted and badly placed under the DHS, then saddled with all sorts of diversions.

Similarly the CDC has been loaded up with all sorts of ridiculous crap like being made responsible for bicycle lane safety and policing of farmers markets. This is a world leading organization that must function at the highest level possible. Loading it up with cruft will destroy it.

Recently I've seen a lot of yammering about some of the people that are seen on TV including Freidman and Fauci, to the effect that they are incompetent and should be shown the door.

I'm sorry but this makes me want to throw up. Anthony Fauci is one of the greatest Americans of this age. His work on HIV/AIDS has saved millions of lives. He is one of the most cited scientists in the world. It is disgusting that he should be subjected to the hysterical politics of the moment.

3 days ago
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Ebola Does Not Require an "Ebola Czar," Nor Calling Up the National Guard

the eric conspiracy Re:What does require those things? (383 comments)

While this is a Fox News topic, the comments are not as bad as what you would get there.

For example not one reference to Obola yet.

3 days ago
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Cell Transplant Allows Paralyzed Man To Walk

the eric conspiracy Re:Next, the brain (161 comments)

Finally a way to eliminate creationists, Republicans, anti-vaxxers, organic food consumers and climate change deniers from the human race!

3 days ago
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Safercar.gov Overwhelmed By Recall For Deadly Airbags

the eric conspiracy Re:Well (120 comments)

Since when are glitchy and unresponsive web sites exclusive to governments?

It took Amazon about 8 years to figure out how to get through Christmas shopping season without blowing up.

Even earlier AT&T's phone system would routinely crash on Mother's Day.

Handling large scale distributed demand surges is a non-trivial problem.

3 days ago
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NASA's HI-SEAS Project Results Suggests a Women-Only Mars Crew

the eric conspiracy Suspended Animation (396 comments)

So are we giving up on the idea of some sort of low metabolism sleep state?

4 days ago
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NASA's HI-SEAS Project Results Suggests a Women-Only Mars Crew

the eric conspiracy Re:Please drop the other shoe (396 comments)

Nah. Some frozen sperm is all that is needed. The rest of a male is unnecessary.

4 days ago
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Soda Pop Damages Your Cells' Telomeres

the eric conspiracy Press Release Science (422 comments)

Give me a break. Since when is good science disseminated by press release?

I remember when Fleischmann and Pons pulled a similar stunt. That turned out to be bunk too.

What do we want? Evidence driven change
When do we want it? After peer review.

5 days ago
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As Prison Population Sinks, Jails Are a Steal

the eric conspiracy Re:"There's a prisoner shortage," (407 comments)

There are still quite a few unemployed and underemployed. Just offer them jobs as Prisoner Simulation Engineers and you will kill two stones with one bird.

about a week ago
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Bill Gates: Piketty's Attack on Income Inequality Is Right

the eric conspiracy Re:Taxing consumption is archaic. (838 comments)

It's very difficult for me to see how you could make a consumption tax progressive enough to result in overall progressive taxation when there are people with 10s of billions in financial assets walking around.

Their personal consumption rates are in the fractions of a percent of their income, not say 80% like an upper middle class person.

Ultimately I think the current taxation system is reasonable IF some of the egregious loopholes are closed - particularly the carried interest and in the area of estate taxation.

about a week ago
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Early Childhood Neglect Associated With Altered Brain Structure, ADHD

the eric conspiracy Re:Parallels exist in animals (87 comments)

In traditional societies your children would take care of you in old age.

Maybe if we got away from this nuclear family bullshit parents would pay more attention to their children because the return on investment would once again be important to them.

about two weeks ago
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Google Announces Motorola-Made Nexus 6 and HTC-Made Nexus 9

the eric conspiracy Re:Meh (201 comments)

I am quite happy with my Nexus 4. I could have maybe dealt with the 5 but surely the 6 is more than what is going to fit in my shirt pocket.

about two weeks ago
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Wind Power Is Cheaper Than Coal, Leaked Report Shows

the eric conspiracy Diseconomies (610 comments)

Unfortunately our system of economics doesn't capture these diseconomies.

Imported oil is another one. If you factored in the cost of political and military involvement in the middle east the price of oil would look very different.

about two weeks ago
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Windows Users, Get Ready For a Bigger-Than-Usual Patch Tuesday

the eric conspiracy Meh (63 comments)

Sounds like everything I don't use in Windows is getting patched.

about two weeks ago
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US Remains Top Country For Global Workers

the eric conspiracy Re:Well yeah (123 comments)

My experience in France is that the young people in tech industries speak good English. Not so much the older generation.

The real problem is once you get out in the general public and want to do something like get a train ticket or buy lunch. It makes daily life a problem.

about two weeks ago
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Tesla Announces Dual Motors, 'Autopilot' For the Model S

the eric conspiracy Re:Meh (283 comments)

You are assuming there are conveniently placed superchargers. The general rule is that there are not. Two of the routes I take most frequently only have superchargers near the destinations. Completely impractical.

For example there is only ONE supercharger in all of Canada.

Then there is the additional fact that even using a supercharger takes a significant amount of time.

The Tesla is great for commutes, but for road trips forget it.

about two weeks ago

Submissions

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35000 Walrus Come Ashore In Alaska

the eric conspiracy the eric conspiracy writes  |  about three weeks ago

the eric conspiracy (20178) writes "Lack of sea ice in the Arctic has forced record numbers of walrus to come ashore in Alaska. The walrus, looking for a place to rest have come ashore in Point Lay Alaska. The walrus normally rest on floating ice.

'We are witnessing a slow-motion catastrophe in the Arctic,' Lou Leonard, vice president for climate change at the World Wildlife Fund, said in a statement that was reported by CNN. 'As this ice dwindles, the Arctic will experience some of the most dramatic changes our generation has ever witnessed. This loss will impact the annual migration of wildlife through the region, threaten the long-term health of walrus and polar bear populations, and change the lives of those who rely on the Arctic ecosystem for their way of life.'"

Link to Original Source
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ACLU accuses La. school of religious harassment

the eric conspiracy the eric conspiracy writes  |  about 9 months ago

the eric conspiracy (20178) writes "The American Civil Liberties Union is suing a school board and staff in Louisiana, alleging in a complaint officials at one of its schools harassed a sixth-grader because of his Buddhist faith and that the district routinely pushes Christian beliefs.

The lawsuit was filed against the Sabine Parish School Board Wednesday in U.S. District Court in Shreveport on behalf of Scott and Sharon Lane and their three children. According to the complaint from the ACLU and its Louisiana chapter, the Lanes enrolled their son — a lifelong Buddhist of Thai descent — in Negreet High School and he quickly became the target of harassment by the school's staff.

In addition to the school board, the lawsuit names as defendant Superintendent Sara Ebarb, Negreet High Principal Gene Wright and science teacher Rita Roark.

The lawsuit said Roark has "repeatedly taught students that the earth was created by God 6,000 years ago, that evolution is impossible and that the Bible is 100 percent true.

She also regularly features religious questions on her tests such as Isn't it amazing what the ______ has made!!!!

When the Lanes' son did not write in Roark's expected answer (LORD), she belittled him in front of the rest of the class.

While studying other religions, she also has told students that Buddhism is stupid, the lawsuit said.

Beyond that, according to the complaint, the school regularly incorporates official Christian prayer into class and school events and scrolls Bible verses on an electronic marquee in front of the school that greets students as they enter the building.

When the Lanes objected, Ebarb told them that this is the Bible belt and suggested they change their son's faith.

Louisiana is one of several US states that have laws permitting use of alternative approaches, in particular the Louisiana Science Education Act[sic] Act"

Link to Original Source
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US Income Distribution Worst Ever

the eric conspiracy the eric conspiracy writes  |  about a year ago

the eric conspiracy (20178) writes "In 2012 the highest earning 1% of the US population garnered 19.3% of the US total. This breaks the previous record set in 1928 at 18.7%. In the last three years, 95% of all income gains have gone to the richest 1%. Real income growth between for the top 1% was 86% between 1993 and 2000. For the remainder of the population earnings rose 6.6%. The study also noted that the top 10% of US families had 50% of the total US income.

Income distribution usually worsens as a country first develops due to a shift from agriculture to urban living, then improves as the economy matures. This is known as the Kuznets curve. The current regression of income equity in the US suggests serious social policy failings."

Link to Original Source
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Measles outbreak tied to Texas megachurch

the eric conspiracy the eric conspiracy writes  |  about a year ago

the eric conspiracy (20178) writes "An outbreak of measles tied to a Texas megachurch where ministers have questioned vaccination has sickened at least 21 people, including a 4-month-old infant — and it’s expected to spread further, state and federal health officials said.

There’s likely a lot more susceptible people,” said Dr. Jane Seward, the deputy director for the viral diseases division at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Seward stated that in this community, these cases so far are all in people who refused some or all vaccination for themselves and their children.

All of the cases are linked to the Eagle Mountain International Church in Newark, Texas, where a visitor who’d traveled to Indonesia became infected with measles – and then returned to the U.S., spreading it to the largely unvaccinated church community, said Russell Jones, the Texas state epidemiologist.

The disease that once killed 500 people a year in the U.S. and hospitalized 48,000 had been considered virtually eradicated after a vaccine introduced in 1963. Cases now show up typically when an unvaccinated person contracts the disease abroad and spreads it upon return to the U.S.

Terri Pearsons, a senior pastor of Eagle Mountain International said she has had concerns about possible ties between early childhood vaccines and autism. In the wake of the measles outbreak, however, Pearsons has urged followers to get vaccinated and the church has held several vaccination clinics."

Link to Original Source
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Supreme Court Unanimously Rules Human Genes Unpatentable

the eric conspiracy the eric conspiracy writes  |  about a year ago

the eric conspiracy (20178) writes "In a landmark decision the Supreme Court ruled that that mere act of extracting genetic material from the human body does not result in patentable material. However they did rule that synthetic derivatives of DNA can be patented. Known as complementary DNA or cDNA these derivative are essentially stripped down forms of the original DNA.

The result for Myriad is that they still have protection for their test, however the decision also allows researchers to work with the DNA sequences that are predecessors to the cDNA used in the test."
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Cell Phone Tracking Data Called 'Junk Science'

the eric conspiracy the eric conspiracy writes  |  about a year ago

the eric conspiracy (20178) writes "In the ABA Journal critics of the use of cell phone tracking data argue that such data should not be admissible in court. Because of a lack of knowledge of the issues with such data many defense teams do not challenge its introduction in trials. However U.S. District Judge Joan H. Lefkow of Chicago is saying not so fast and wrote: “multiple factors can affect the signal strength of a tower” and an FBI special agent’s “chosen methodology has received no scrutiny outside the law enforcement community.”

Michael Cherry, the CEO of Cherry Biometrics, a Falls Church, Va.-based consulting firm that has led the legal assault on cell tower tracking, calls it “junk science” that should never be admitted in any court for any reason. In fact, he can’t believe that such an easily disproved technique, which has been around for a decade or more, is still routinely being used in court.

Hopefully we will see increased scrutiny of this type of evidence in the future."
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Europe's energy policy leads to increased coal consumption

the eric conspiracy the eric conspiracy writes  |  about a year and a half ago

the eric conspiracy (20178) writes "Europe's energy policies have lead to a large increase in coal consumption, as much as 50% in some countries, this article in the Economist points out. In the US shale gas prices have reduced the demand for coal to the point where coal prices have decreased world-wide. Decreased Chinese demand for imported coal has also put pressure on coal prices. However in Europe decisions in Germany to shutter nuclear reactors combined with lack of development of shale gas resources have made coal by far the most economically attractive energy source. This has led to increased coal mining in Europe where most deposits are low quality, dirty lignite as well as increased imports.

Anne-Sophie Corbeau of the International Energy Agency refers to it as a "golden age of coal in Europe". The Economist states that it is making a mockery of European environmental aspirations.

German energy policies also give priority to solar and wind on their electrical grid, meaning peak rates are available to these sources. This plus the cost of gas in Europe forces utilities to burn coal to remain economically viable. Some large utilities would be likely to default on their bonds if they could not burn coal.

While Germany is aggressively seeking to switch to wind and solar, the current situation is feeding construction of new coal burning plants as renewables are unlikely to be able to replace the nuclear capacity for decades, and thus coal will be a large part of Europe's energy generation going forward.

Nuclear must continue to be part of the overall energy picture; public policies that de-emphasize nuclear are mistaken. Research into safer nuclear generation needs to be a high priority part of a smart energy policy."

Link to Original Source
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TV Networks Suit Against Aero Appears In Trouble

the eric conspiracy the eric conspiracy writes  |  about a year and a half ago

the eric conspiracy (20178) writes "U.S. Court of Appears for the Second Circuit today ruled that a copyright infringement suit against Aero was unlikely to win on its merits and denied a preliminary injunction. Most major networks, including NBC, ABC, and CBS sued claiming Aero's antenna which allows receiving off the air programming and enables users to watch and record to any internet connected equipment violates copyright law. Aero charges a $12/month fee for the service.

Aero is currently limited to use in the NYC area, however is working on expansion to other major population centers in the US. This verdict is likely to help Aero's expansion plans considerably.

Text of the decision can be found here."

Link to Original Source
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Deep Carbon

the eric conspiracy the eric conspiracy writes  |  about a year and a half ago

the eric conspiracy (20178) writes "Where is the missing carbon? The Earth is believed to be formed from space junk with an overall carbon content of 3%. Yet the surface composition is only about 0.1% carbon. Deep Carbon Observatory scientists say estimates of carbon bound in the metallic core alone range from 0.25 to 1 percent by weight. If 1 percent proves correct, the core by itself sequesters four times more carbon than all known carbon reservoirs in the rest of the planet—and 50,000,000 times as much as that held in the flora and fauna on Earth's relatively wafer-thin skin far above.

The discovery of vast reserves of buried carbon may suggest solutions to the climate change crisis on the surface. And the Earth's deepest recesses also suggest how life might behave on other planets. It is literally transforming our understanding of the planet and, through that, our understanding of other planets," said Barbara Sherwood Lollar, a University of Toronto scientist who's one of the directors of the Deep Carbon Observatory. Today a large collection of studies is being released in a volume "Carbon In Earth" by Reviews in Mineralogy and Geochemistry which is available for free download to the public."

Link to Original Source
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Judge Rules Against Tewksbury Hotel Forfeiture

the eric conspiracy the eric conspiracy writes  |  about a year and a half ago

the eric conspiracy (20178) writes "In one of the most contentious civil forfeiture fights in the nation, Magistrate Judge Judith G. Dein of the U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts concluded, based on a week-long bench trial in November 2012, that the motel was not subject to forfeiture under federal law and that its owners were wholly innocent of any wrongdoing."
Link to Original Source
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US Has the Worst Healthcare

the eric conspiracy the eric conspiracy writes  |  about 2 years ago

the eric conspiracy (20178) writes "The United States has long been known to have the most expensive heath care system in the world, costing 19% of GDP, with one of the highest GDPs per capita. Even worse is the fact that this expenditure doesn't provide many Americans with comprehensive coverage. In addition existing Medicare and Medicaid programs are in deep financial trouble, increasing the chance that things will get worse before they get better.

Now a study conducted by the National Research Council and the Institute of Medicine shows that Americans of all ages are less healthy and have a shorter life expectancy than the citizens of 17 other developed countries. In particular the U.S. fares worse than the average in at least nine health areas: adolescent pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections; chronic lung disease; disability; drug-related deaths; HIV and AIDS; heart disease; infant mortality and low birth weight; injuries and homicides; and obesity and diabetes. Us women finish 16th and US men 17th in this ranking. The study shows the US disadvantage cuts across many demographics.

Recent reforms (i.e. Obamacare) seem unlikely to address the root of the problem, gross inefficiencies and allocation of funds to areas that are not cost effective.

Clearly there is a great misallocation of resources. The time is clearly come for a comprehensive reform instead of the bandaid approach of Obamacare."
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Trans Pacific Pact Threatens Fair Use

the eric conspiracy the eric conspiracy writes  |  more than 2 years ago

the eric conspiracy (20178) writes "In a leak of agreement text published by Knowledge Ecology International fair use seems to be considered fair game for TPP negotiators. Since the US Constitution gives treaties priority over local law, and these treaties are being negotiated in secret the participants in these negotiations have extraordinary influence.

Furthermore it has been stated by US Trade Representative that "domestic stakeholders", that is corporations will have approval over the form of the treaty.

This is tantamount to placing corporations at the same level or higher than the US Congress, and in a process that is secret from the REAL domestic stakeholders, the citizens of the United States."

Link to Original Source
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CIA and NYPD Alliance

the eric conspiracy the eric conspiracy writes  |  more than 3 years ago

the eric conspiracy (20178) writes "The AP reports that post 9-11, the NYPD has been conducting intelligence operations covertly and independently from city government at the behest and with funding from the CIA.

The NYPD is able to conduct operations that would be illegal under civil liberties restrictions for the Federal Government to conduct, in particular targeting various ethnic communities.

The CIA, under US law is forbidden from spying on Americans."

Link to Original Source
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GAO, DOJ Call for H1-B reform

the eric conspiracy the eric conspiracy writes  |  more than 3 years ago

the eric conspiracy (20178) writes "The GAO has released a major report outlining the characteristics of current participants in the US H1-B program. In particular it seems that H1-B employees are most often from India, are paid less than US workers doing similar work and the most frequent field of employment is the computer industry. Of particular concern some 30% of these employees are used by about 1% of the employers. Both the DOJ and GAO are recommending further steps be taken to require employers to demonstrate that they are unable to hire US workers before they hire H1-B candidates."
Link to Original Source
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the eric conspiracy the eric conspiracy writes  |  more than 7 years ago

the eric conspiracy (20178) writes "For several years I've been buying custom barebones systems from Monarch Computer based on a recommendation I found on slashdot, and have been happy with the result. However in 2006 they really went downhill, and now appear to be out of business. So I am looking for suppliers whom I can go to for a computer where I can specify the motherboard, case, power supply, memory on a piece by piece basis, get feedback from the supplier as to whether these items would be a reliable combination, and have the supplier assemble the custom system and test it. The system may just be a motherboard and CPU, or it might be all the way to a complete package. Any suggestions?"

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