Search found 3548 matches

by elasto
Thu Sep 20, 2018 12:07 pm UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: Trump presidency
Replies: 7262
Views: 542886

Re: Trump presidency

That's what elections are for , right? Voters can decide that a certain politician or party is inflexible and destructive. Or they can look at the very same actions and consider them a spirited pursuit of worthwhile goals. That takes a lot of the pain out of the prisoners dilemma - overly uncoopera...
by elasto
Thu Sep 20, 2018 8:03 am UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: Trump presidency
Replies: 7262
Views: 542886

Re: Trump presidency

Right. Which is why it's so important that politicians learn how to lose with grace rather than pursue victory at any cost -- because the consequence of doing whatever it takes to win is that you create an environment where those sort of people are the only ones who can win. It's a prisoners' dilem...
by elasto
Sun Sep 09, 2018 1:44 pm UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: Police misbehavior thread
Replies: 6429
Views: 940763

Re: Police misbehavior thread

I agree that apps and social media provide doses of stimulation/oblivion on demand in amounts not far off what the milder drugs achieve, but I think this generation is also better educated than ever before - again, thanks largely to the internet. I don't have any data for this but I'd imagine this g...
by elasto
Sun Sep 09, 2018 10:37 am UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: Police misbehavior thread
Replies: 6429
Views: 940763

Re: Police misbehavior thread

Hold your horses there boy!

If the number of no-knocks has gone up and drug use has gone down, maybe more no-knocks would drop drug use even further!

Free no-knocks for all! Yay!!
by elasto
Fri Sep 07, 2018 7:17 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: Vegetarianism
Replies: 45
Views: 2016

Re: Vegetarianism

In a world in which we have all the knowledge we need to make the informed decisions, maybe. In real world, it's not like that. But it is. In the UK alone, our pet cats are estimated to kill around a hundred million sentient creatures a year. Under your model where humans have an ethical obligation...
by elasto
Fri Sep 07, 2018 5:54 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: Vegetarianism
Replies: 45
Views: 2016

Re: Vegetarianism

Well considering the fact the OP didn't even make a distinction between veganism and vegetarianism I'm not sure we should even talk about it in this thread. I think it's worth discussing because it's a disproof of their argument via taking it to its logical conclusion. Their argument against meat-e...
by elasto
Fri Sep 07, 2018 2:21 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: Vegetarianism
Replies: 45
Views: 2016

Re: Vegetarianism

Maybe some people are certain of that. Probably just vegans though. (I'm just running forwards the same 'absolutist' chain of logic: If you think that vegetarianism is more ethical than meat-eating on the basis of minimising animal suffering, then you should conclude that veganism is more ethical t...
by elasto
Fri Sep 07, 2018 2:12 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: Vegetarianism
Replies: 45
Views: 2016

Re: Vegetarianism

That presumes that we all agree that eating any kind of meat is unethical. Most people take the opposite view. (They just are wilfully ignorant of the cruelty involved). For better or worse we live in a democracy. Any government that tried to enforce that eating meat is unethical by punitive taxatio...
by elasto
Fri Sep 07, 2018 2:03 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: Vegetarianism
Replies: 45
Views: 2016

Re: Vegetarianism

Isn't crystalizing the collective will of the people via government more effective then encouraging people? That's what happens right now. The collective will of the people is currently that meat is fine. Government enforcement of ethics is tricky. Whose ethics do we enforce when it comes to diet? ...
by elasto
Fri Sep 07, 2018 9:01 am UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: Vegetarianism
Replies: 45
Views: 2016

Re: Vegetarianism

You do realize we need to harvest many times more plants to feed all those farmed animals than to only feed humans? I wrote about that "issue" in the blog-post. I am not sure why are people bringing this up, because I think they already know the answer. I don't think you'll find many disa...
by elasto
Thu Sep 06, 2018 10:14 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: Vegetarianism
Replies: 45
Views: 2016

Re: Vegetarianism

If you ask me why, I don't really know how to give a simple answer, because I don't understand the other side of the story. I don't understand how could somebody, who has thought about the issue at all, think it's moral to eat meat. I don't really have a dog in this fight but an example of a meat-e...
by elasto
Thu Sep 06, 2018 9:22 pm UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: British EU referendum in June [update: Leave wins 52% - 48%, politics ensue]
Replies: 1201
Views: 173080

Re: British EU referendum in June [update: Leave wins 52% - 48%, politics ensue]

Damn! I managed to edit just when you posted again. As I've said, xenophobia isn't a precision instrument; all immigrants are going to get the blame for the actions of a few. Yeah - except that these weren't immigrants. They were run of the mill UK-born criminals. Anyhow. Thanks for bringing the det...
by elasto
Thu Sep 06, 2018 8:57 pm UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: Trump presidency
Replies: 7262
Views: 542886

Re: Trump presidency

That's a frighteningly Machiavellian scheme: The Republicans get everything they want, get to blame the Democrats, and energise their base into a frothing frenzy, likely causing a clean sweep of government for a cycle or two.

Democracy is a terrible, terrible system. Roll on the AI overlords I say!
by elasto
Thu Sep 06, 2018 8:41 pm UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: British EU referendum in June [update: Leave wins 52% - 48%, politics ensue]
Replies: 1201
Views: 173080

Re: British EU referendum in June [update: Leave wins 52% - 48%, politics ensue]

Kind of a moot point as to whether the blame for the cover up lies with the council/socialservices/police 33/33/33 or 25/25/50 or 20/10/70. I disagree. The failure of the police meant that whether or not social services covered anything up these people were never going to be stopped. If you have th...
by elasto
Thu Sep 06, 2018 8:23 pm UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: British EU referendum in June [update: Leave wins 52% - 48%, politics ensue]
Replies: 1201
Views: 173080

Re: British EU referendum in June [update: Leave wins 52% - 48%, politics ensue]

I'm saying that if the police had done their job there would have been nothing to cover up. Don't tell me that no parent ever went to the police saying that their child had been sold drugs or had sex. The police would (or should) have had much more information than social services ever did, meaning ...
by elasto
Thu Sep 06, 2018 8:09 pm UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: British EU referendum in June [update: Leave wins 52% - 48%, politics ensue]
Replies: 1201
Views: 173080

Re: British EU referendum in June [update: Leave wins 52% - 48%, politics ensue]

Ah, I see. I didn't know it went back so far. Reading more into it, the fault seems to lie squarely with the police. If people are supplying drugs and engaging in sex with underage children it seems like it should be a slam-dunk conviction, and I am at a loss as to why that did not occur. And don't ...
by elasto
Thu Sep 06, 2018 7:21 pm UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: British EU referendum in June [update: Leave wins 52% - 48%, politics ensue]
Replies: 1201
Views: 173080

Re: British EU referendum in June [update: Leave wins 52% - 48%, politics ensue]

What was shocking was that the local councils knew about the gangs for decades and had covered them up Have a citation for that? Police investigations and judicial sentencing are a matter of public record by the way, so that's not something councils have any ability to 'cover up' - unless you're im...
by elasto
Thu Sep 06, 2018 5:59 pm UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: Police misbehavior thread
Replies: 6429
Views: 940763

Re: Police misbehavior thread

And the fact that argument leads to a ridiculous outcome should give its proponents pause for thought. There was absolutely no reason to put this women through this experience for handing someone a business card. This weird, absolutist "all objects are equally dangerous" idea is pretty fa...
by elasto
Thu Sep 06, 2018 10:04 am UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: Police misbehavior thread
Replies: 6429
Views: 940763

Re: Police misbehavior thread

They're holding her, so they need to know who she is, so that they can determine if she has a criminal record, a history of violence or other harmful activity, or some other concern. It's possible you're not aware of this, but in the UK we fingerprint people on being charged with a crime. Also, in ...
by elasto
Thu Sep 06, 2018 9:43 am UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: British EU referendum in June [update: Leave wins 52% - 48%, politics ensue]
Replies: 1201
Views: 173080

Re: British EU referendum in June [update: Leave wins 52% - 48%, politics ensue]

The vote for Brexit was highest in the places with the lowest influx of immigrants. The places with large numbers of new immigrants tended to also have high levels of support for Remain. In other words it's all based on fear of difference and of the unknown, which is why politicians and the media be...
by elasto
Wed Sep 05, 2018 10:14 pm UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: British EU referendum in June [update: Leave wins 52% - 48%, politics ensue]
Replies: 1201
Views: 173080

Re: British EU referendum in June [update: Leave wins 52% - 48%, politics ensue]

I'm not sure what else could really be expected? Of course other countries seek advantage in trade deals. And if you are bailing on the EU, they don't have much motivation to make sure you get what you want out of it. Crazy isn't it. And when the EU is portrayed as playing hard-ball with the negoti...
by elasto
Wed Sep 05, 2018 7:32 pm UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: Police misbehavior thread
Replies: 6429
Views: 940763

Re: Police misbehavior thread

You are confusing two distinct issues. She wasn't arrested for not identifying herself; she was arrested for obstruction, basically for interfering with a lawful search of a suspect. And what you seem to be missing is that none of us are saying the police were not allowed to arrest her for handing ...
by elasto
Wed Sep 05, 2018 7:41 am UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: Police misbehavior thread
Replies: 6429
Views: 940763

Re: Police misbehavior thread

The UK normally prides itself on minimal possible force and escalating as little as possible, with "policing by consent" being the watchword. Arresting her seems unnecessary. Assuming she argued rationally prior to her arrest, it should have been clear it was passive resistance rather than...
by elasto
Tue Sep 04, 2018 9:43 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: Libertarianism
Replies: 856
Views: 27979

Re: Libertarianism

Automation has been claimed to devalue labor for many generations now, but it's never actually happened. If the fundamental reason we need to change society rests on a prediction, you might want to refine the accuracy of it a bit. Better than the level at which apocalyptic christian sorts predict t...
by elasto
Sat Sep 01, 2018 9:28 am UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: Libertarianism
Replies: 856
Views: 27979

Re: Libertarianism

Consider the degenerate case where you squish the income distribution completely . You have a 100% income tax rate for all income above the UBI,and everyone receives the same UBI, so everyone has the same income. The reason that's bad is that it destroys all personal financial incentive to earn inc...
by elasto
Fri Aug 31, 2018 5:24 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: Libertarianism
Replies: 856
Views: 27979

Re: Libertarianism

Affordable housing just happens to be a good example of this sort of market. As the lower end of the income spectrum gets more money, this housing grows less affordable, prompting them to seek additional money in pursuit of it, and a higher rate of UBI to keep up with the inflation they experience....
by elasto
Thu Aug 30, 2018 12:58 pm UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: Judea Pearl's Critism of Machine Learning
Replies: 17
Views: 3657

Re: Judea Pearl's Critism of Machine Learning

After all, checking all of the possibilities yields strictly better results than statistical analysis, but exhaustive searches are often effectively impossible. There may be situations were making and remembering causal relationships reaches the answer faster or is able to search deeper into the po...
by elasto
Wed Aug 29, 2018 7:13 pm UTC
Forum: Mathematics
Topic: "Generalized" polygons?
Replies: 10
Views: 717

Re: "Generalized" polygons?

Hmm.

A square with negative sides would none-the-less have a positive area.

Meaningless or mind-blowing..? You decide...
by elasto
Tue Aug 28, 2018 10:27 pm UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: Judea Pearl's Critism of Machine Learning
Replies: 17
Views: 3657

Re: Judea Pearl's Critism of Machine Learning

Perhaps, but I have the feeling there's more to our understanding of causality than mere correlation with a time offset. We reason about causality, using the concept of a mechanism that underlies the causal relationship. In fact, this is so important that we are prone to make errors of both types: ...
by elasto
Tue Aug 28, 2018 9:25 pm UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Word Based Consciousness
Replies: 11
Views: 936

Re: Word Based Consciousness

Now, apart from that, a deaf and blind person is likely not to have much facility with words. Are they not conscious though? Or, consider a newborn baby. They probably have very little in the way of ideas - they are probably just a giant ball of naked emotions - sleepiness, hunger, anxiety and so o...
by elasto
Tue Aug 28, 2018 7:02 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: Libertarianism
Replies: 856
Views: 27979

Re: Libertarianism

Low paid and part time jobs are taxed comparatively lightly under any progressive taxation scheme. Generally, low paid workers in the US pay little in tax, as you pay only 10% federal tax on your first bit of income, and you've got deductions to consider as well. Maybe it's just the UK that handles...
by elasto
Tue Aug 28, 2018 6:00 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: Libertarianism
Replies: 856
Views: 27979

Re: Libertarianism

A large part of the assumptions regarding UBI is that it will somehow help the currently unemployed become employed. I'm not sure that this is directly supported by data. The unemployed are already being supported by safety nets, and would be under pretty much any conceivable system in a modern, ci...
by elasto
Tue Aug 28, 2018 1:20 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: Libertarianism
Replies: 856
Views: 27979

Re: Libertarianism

Off the top of my head, there's not more money in the system it's just distributed differently, so assuming the economy equivalently reorganises it feels like prices need not rise. As in, sure, industries and the skills represented therein are not perfectly interchangeable, but someone investing cap...
by elasto
Thu Aug 23, 2018 2:44 pm UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: The Darker Side of the News
Replies: 4126
Views: 550547

Re: The Darker Side of the News

Just because this was not an issue related to net neutrality doesn't mean net neutrality isn't an issue... Yeah but they are trying to make this about net neutrality when it isn't: "Verizon's throttling has everything to do with net neutrality — it shows that the ISPs will act in their economi...
by elasto
Thu Aug 23, 2018 12:42 pm UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: Trump presidency
Replies: 7262
Views: 542886

Re: Trump presidency

Nah. Realpolitik always has and always will rule the day. We are friends with Saudi Arabia because we want their oil. We are friends with China because we want their goods. We condemn North Korea because they have nothing we want. May probably despises Trump as a person, but sucks up to him publicly...
by elasto
Thu Aug 16, 2018 7:26 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: Libertarianism
Replies: 856
Views: 27979

Re: Libertarianism

But it's not obvious to me how one would have a system of gradually buying a home without committing to the full purchase. There are a couple of variants in the UK. The first version is you rent a house from the government at ~80% of market rate and then have the option to purchase at the end of yo...
by elasto
Thu Aug 16, 2018 7:06 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: Libertarianism
Replies: 856
Views: 27979

Re: Libertarianism

The US has internships as well, particularly for med school. They are...eh. In some cases not so bad, but in some cases, I do think they can be exploitative. Folks being required to work 24 hr+ shifts during residency is probably unhealthy, and the system as a whole is probably unduly coercive. Als...
by elasto
Thu Aug 16, 2018 6:46 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: Libertarianism
Replies: 856
Views: 27979

Re: Libertarianism

Yeah. It doesn't seem practical. A more traditional wage seems more reasonable for most things. I'm okay with say, housing or whatever being provided as part of a wage, if you want to make some such arrangement, but generally an up-front lump sum is going to be more difficult than a scheduled wage....
by elasto
Thu Aug 16, 2018 6:36 pm UTC
Forum: Mathematics
Topic: Terminology Question: Percentile vs Percentile Rank
Replies: 9
Views: 1387

Re: Terminology Question: Percentile vs Percentile Rank

To be fair, it's not obvious a-priori that 'at' and 'in' mean such different things in this context; To me they are virtually synonyms ('I'm at my house' <==> 'I'm in my house') with 'at' actually being the broader term (being 'at your house' might mean being just outside it) I feel like there shoul...
by elasto
Thu Aug 09, 2018 8:53 am UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: Libertarianism
Replies: 856
Views: 27979

Re: Libertarianism

But the property taxes would be less because the government isn't putting these things in. It should be a wash. No, because currently road-building, school-building, hospital-building etc. comes out of general taxation. It makes a difference because we're considering the effect of a policy on the h...

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