Heteromeles

Heteromeles

  • Commented on The obligatory general election discussion post
    Found myself humming REM's It's The End of the World As We Know It this morning while looking for news on Brexit. Hope everyone in the UK gets out and does the voting thing. And I hope their votes turn...
  • Commented on The obligatory general election discussion post
    Um, no. You missed out the Buddhist vegan cuisine (developed to feed retired emperors who abdicated and retreated to a monastery, so: court food made with tofu and vegetable proteins), Northern cuisine (tends to be hot and spicy: lots of...
  • Commented on The obligatory general election discussion post
    Actually, competition does go with scarcity. The question is *what people compete over.* In scarcity situations, resource hording is punished severely. This is either a default setting in humans as primates (the whole issue of fairness), or it's a system...
  • Commented on The obligatory general election discussion post
    Being desperately poor, young, and drunk (especially in long meetings) are not necessarily mutually exclusive. I'm not being snide. The mortality rates for poor peasants are typically horrendous, so the leaders of a mass uprising are almost certainly going to...
  • Commented on The obligatory general election discussion post
    The problem with "controlling," in the authoritarian sense, is that both authoritarian leader and authoritarian followers seem to be crap at solving complex problems that require a lot of people to work together for the common good, and the leaders...
  • Commented on The obligatory general election discussion post
    Took me until 2016 to pull the plug on NPR. Dating back to 2000, I'd gotten in the pattern of not donating to them during election years, then even numbered years, then... What got me all the way off NPR...
  • Commented on The obligatory general election discussion post
    Both coffee and alcohol distillation were known to the Arabs, and possibly distillation was experimented with by the Romans. Popularizing them is a different thing. In any case coffee houses, like the earlier Muslim tea houses, were places where people...
  • Commented on The obligatory general election discussion post
    Well, if you want to bring on the squick, it's actually more interesting if you assume that it becomes increasingly possible for someone to go to a spa for a week and come back as enlightened as if they'd spent...
  • Commented on The obligatory general election discussion post
    What, because I'm conflating the word imaginary in imaginary numbers with the word imaginary in the so-far-impossible-to-detect dark matter and dark energy? I don't think that word means the same thing in each context, which I (apparently wrongly) assumed people...
  • Commented on The obligatory general election discussion post
    And just to annoy the mathematicians, wouldn't it be ironic if it turned out that the universe behaves as if it has dark matter, simply because it runs on octonion math, and has so many imaginary dimensions? (Yes, I do...
  • Commented on The obligatory general election discussion post
    But if you believe Cohl Furey, octonion math underlies reality, which is one of those things that the discerning fantasist can use to bring Lovecraftian tropes into the 21st Century....
  • Commented on The obligatory general election discussion post
    RE: Getting rid of the middle class humanely. Here's a thought, and I apologize if anyone takes this as a slight on Buddhism. The idea is that we're near or in a period of peak human numbers, and the global...
  • Commented on The obligatory general election discussion post
    Boredom is probably not the problem, but beyond that I have no clue what will happen. If the protests follow the plan of the Tiananmen Square debacle, the leaders of the protest will try to disband, only to be met...
  • Commented on The obligatory general election discussion post
    I should point out that what I was asking about was not the verifiable erosion of the traditional middle class, but rather whether anyone had seen either of the following: --Someone propose deliberately abolishing the middle class (presumably through impoverishing...
  • Commented on The obligatory general election discussion post
    Just a sarcastic, troublemaking thought: In terms of sheer resource consumption, the global middle class is one of the biggest problems the world faces. Getting rid of the middle class, leaving a world of only the rich and the poor,...
  • Commented on The obligatory general election discussion post
    Always worth testing any claim about the unreasonable effectiveness of mathematics is to see how well it works with either a shovelful of dirt or, better yet, the same shovelful when it was intact soil. The problem I'm pointing to...
  • Commented on The obligatory general election discussion post
    SSRIs? Heck the USFDA recently pointed to some other interesting possibilities. Considering the situation we're all in, I'd go with option B, especially since it's a single dose treatment if done properly....
  • Commented on Sucker bet (a thought experiment)
    Yes, I think that taking over Faux is probably not viable. If you want to get into the milkshake-sucking aspect of what to do about elderly reactionaries, I do have two suggestions, both more (im)practical. 1. Invest some chunk of...
  • Commented on Sucker bet (a thought experiment)
    There's a bunch of problems with California. The biggest one, first manifested in the proposed state capitol of Benicia, is that land speculators get in ahead of any proposed government activity (like, oh, building a high speed rail network), buy...
  • Commented on Sucker bet (a thought experiment)
    Yes, I have his book, but I haven't read it yet (The World in a Grain ). Actually, what I'd love to see is the electrosynthesis crowd come up with a way to cheaply use atmospheric CO2 to synthesize mass...
  • Commented on Sucker bet (a thought experiment)
    For those who aren't in the US, a 401K is a retirement investment account you pay into that is only taxed after you start taking money out (ideally after you retire). The theory is that your income tax rate goes...
  • Commented on Sucker bet (a thought experiment)
    We'll have to agree to disagree about the speed of glacial temperature cycling. The one other tidbit is with the Gulf Stream switching on and off depending on whether Hudson's Bay was freezing or thawing, Europe went from European weather...
  • Commented on Sucker bet (a thought experiment)
    I'm curious about something, and you don't need to answer if you prefer not, but do you have any children, and if so, what are you telling them to do with the rest of their lives, with reference to Climate...
  • Commented on Sucker bet (a thought experiment)
    Okay, before you get too happy about carbon removal tech, remember that it's effing useless to recycle carbon out of the air and blow it right back up there, with a side helping of NOx* from combustion. This is just...
  • Commented on Sucker bet (a thought experiment)
    More misconceptions, I'm afraid. Most of the people in the world live towards the equator, not towards the poles, and they live in India, Africa, Southeast Asia, and southern China. We're children of the ice, not because of the cold...
  • Commented on Sucker bet (a thought experiment)
    About the PETM. To clarify, since I've been digging around that one fairly extensively, two things happened: 1. The general size of a range of animals (a very common mammal, worm borrow diameters, and IIRC crayfish burrow diameters) dropped at...
  • Commented on Sucker bet (a thought experiment)
    Late response to the "Pure Evil" strategies, but I really must point out that one rich kid by the name of Osama Bin Laden actually implemented that strategy. His family got rich helping the suits build up the oil industry...
  • Commented on Sucker bet (a thought experiment)
    Ummmmmmm, Wealth managers, in their own words (see Harrington's Capital Without Borders, view their relationship with their clients as a modern version of knightly fealty to their lords. Trust and discretion are what the key to their professional reputations, more...
  • Commented on Sucker bet (a thought experiment)
    Oh, puh-leeze. I hope that was a joke. Cosmology is useless, in that they can't tell us what 96% of their universe is. If you want to see what fundamentalists are truly scared, what really warps people's beliefs, to the...
  • Commented on Sucker bet (a thought experiment)
    Too bad paying a team of idiot virologist/synthetic biologists to recreate and release Variola major probably is not off the table for a billionaire. I can just see someone trying to make the world safer by getting rid of a...
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