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Comment Re:What a load... (Score 3, Informative) 388

A nit but corporations are groups of people with all the rights and responsibilities of those individuals. We only treat them as "a person" as legal shorthand.

Not quite. The whole point of a incorporated / limited liability company and equivalent entities (Inc, llc, Ltd, SA, GmbH, NV, etc) is that owners are only liable up to their investment, i.e. you are not responsible for the debts of the corporation; not individually and not as a group. You can lose your investment, but that's the limit of your liability. If the group of owners of e.g. a coal plant would have the "rights and responsibilities" of the entity, they would be collectively responsible for its debts, e.g. cleanup costst, if it goes bankrupt. As a corporation, the plant goes bankrupt, the owners lose their investments (their shares are worthless), but remaining debts and liabilities cannot be collected.

Because this creates moral hazard and can cause society to be left with unpaid liabilities (tax, legal liabilities such as cleanup costs) historically they could only be created by special government fiat ("royal charter"), an implicit collective acceptance that the benefits outweigh the risk to society, and their number was quite limited for a long time, with famous corporations like the Dutch and British East India Companies among the earliest examples. Now, however, anybody and their uncle can start a llc/corporation, and while in theory the managers can be held responsible if they act in bad faith (e.g. take out loans, funnel the money to Caymans, declare bankruptcy) this is not prosecuted nearly often enough.

Submission + - Universities of Delft, Munich beat MIT in Hyperloop pod competition (

mrvan writes: Two international university teams clinched top honors for the first test phase of Elon Musk's Hyperloop competition that ran this weekend. The Delft Hyperloop team, of Delft University in the Netherlands, got the highest overall score. Technical University of Munich, Germany secured the award for the fastest pod. And MIT placed third overall in the competition, which was judged by SpaceX engineers. Although teams have been participating in the SpaceX Hyperloop competition since 2015, this weekend marked the first time qualifiers got the opportunity to test their Hyperloop pod on the mile-long SpaceX track. In 2016, SpaceX selected 30 teams to participate this weekend after passing through the design phase of the competition.

Comment Re:Assange lacks integrity. (Score 4, Interesting) 564

From my understanding, a president has two options: he can pardon someone, meaning the whole conviction is removed and things like e.g. voting rights are restored; or he can commute a sentence, which lowers the penalty but upholds the original conviction. So, after being released from her commuted sentence, Manning will still be a convicted felon and traitor, probably won't be eligible to vote or stand for election, will never get security clearance, etc etc. Also emotionally, a pardon would acknowledge that what she did was (somewhat) right, while a commutation means that she is still guilty and her acts were wrong, just not deserving of such a hash treatment. This also sends quite a different message to would-be whistleblowers.

So, the difference between pardon and commutation is not a technicality, it is very real.

Comment Re:I wanted a G5 ! - Could not find a demo of DAC (Score 1) 78

If your hope in humanity was pinned on underpaid mall shop staffers knowing about DAC I think you had it coming :)

I'm curious though, do you really hear/appreciate the sound quality while you're cycling? I can maybe understand it in an environment where you can concentrate on the music, but on a bike...?

Comment Re:ALREADY HAVE IT! (Score 2) 121

Nucular from the '50's' works as good today and tomorrow as it always have. Trust me. I know. I am a nucular enginer in charged of safeney.

I can see "nucular" as being sort of witty (or at least a cheap dig at the previous POTUS), but I would hope that an "enginer in charged of safeney" could pay a little bit more attention to detail...

Comment Re:I wouldn't take that bet. (Score 2) 426

I think you underestimate how hard killing a lot of people is.

The nazi's spent ~4 years setting up a formidable killing industry, partly automated and partly mechanised (especially in Eastern Europe most jews and other victims were killed by (machine)gunfire, not in the extermination camps), which resulted in around ~10 million deaths (of 6 million jews and of which 3 million in extermination camps), or 2.5 million people per year. Stalin took around 20 years to kill 10-60 million people, so a similar death rate, and communist China also has similar numbers per annum, depending on whether famine counts or not.

Compare that withthe current global population growth is 1%, or about 70 million people per year. So, to keep the population from growing, you need to setup killing at 25 times the rate of Hitler or Stalin. To significantly decrease the world population in a 'reasonable' time frame you would need to up that by at least an order of magnitude again.

tl;dr: you can kill some people some of the time, but it gets really tough to do do so in demographically significant way

[see:,, and references therein]

Comment Re:Doctor Doctor Give Me The News (Score 3, Interesting) 508

My guess* is that they are from separate stems. In Dutch, kleven (clay-vun) is to stick together, and klieven (clee-vun) is to split apart.

No idea where the contradictory meaning in sanction comes from, in Dutch 'sanctioneren' (v) also has both meanings and people get confused.

*) And Internet confirms it :)

Comment Re:Meanwhile, the fucking Mars rover (Score 1) 40

From what I read, they want to prevent having a noise source that could interfere with future missions. I'm not sure I buy that, with what power the satellite could get from broken solar panels on the comet surely the noise would be quite limited, but that's what the local newspaper said.

Also, I guess they just want to wrap up the project, shut off the receivers, and move on.

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