Geoff Hart

Geoff Hart

  • Commented on Dread of Heinleinism
    JBS noted (re. Starship Troopers): "And that's a flaw in the narrative. It's naive and idealistic and certainly not the norm in any society I'm aware of past or present. But it is the ideal on which the U.S. was...
  • Commented on Taxonomy of story, or, why murder?
    _Moz_ noted: "The thing with public transport is that reliability and frequency are what makes it work at all. So you need to run buses and trains empty off peak just so that they are always there." Yes and no....
  • Commented on Taxonomy of story, or, why murder?
    Re. public transit: It's obvious enough to deserve repetition, but the transit system must be well-designed to make it attractive to commuters. When I grew up in Montreal (late 1960s-1970s), public transit from the 'burbs was a disaster. I lived...
  • Commented on Dread of Heinleinism
    The Raven noted: "I think the general problem with the governmental model Heinlein used in Starship Troopers, governance by an elite, regardless of its terms of service, is that it is actually not new at all: it is aristocracy, and...
  • Commented on Taxonomy of story, or, why murder?
    Pigeon noted: "This is a weirdly popular form of argument on here: that we haven't built X for a while, therefore we can't build X at all any more (where X may be nuclear reactors, or moon rockets, or pour-your-own...
  • Commented on Dread of Heinleinism
    JBS notes: "I think the real lesson of Starship Troopers is civic duty - that "rights" come with "responsibilities"; something that too many still don't understand." If I had to boil it down to one statement, I'd pretty much say...
  • Commented on Taxonomy of story, or, why murder?
    allynh noted: "Variations on the Murder Mystery: - You are murdered, you are restored to an earlier backup and have to find out who killed you." Iain M. Banks, "Feersum Endjinn", has some fun with that notion too, though it's...
  • Commented on Taxonomy of story, or, why murder?
    Elderly Cynic noted: "While it is often claimed that marrying for love is recent, there is precious little evidence for it, and some against it." Yes. It's probably fairer to say that *the freedom* to marry for love is relatively...
  • Commented on Taxonomy of story, or, why murder?
    I think it depends on what you're looking for in a book. There are many great stories in which the struggle is against nature, a scientific challenge, a rival for the hand of your beloved, duels of wits to see...
  • Commented on Dread of Heinleinism
    Total disagreed with my suggestion that the modern trend of increased civilian casualties is not the result of a deliberate policy to wipe out civilians, providing examples: "Uh, and the Nazis in the USSR, and the Germans in East Africa...
  • Commented on Dread of Heinleinism
    Martin, thanks for the reality check on what I wrote. I did my best to clarify that my description was speculative and descriptive of a common but not ubiquitous trend, with obvious exceptions. The response by two participants reminds me...
  • Commented on Dread of Heinleinism
    Nojay opined: "The idea of smashing a nation into mush, conquering it but not for loot or slaves but for political purposes (do what I tell you or I will kill all of you) is a very new concept, historically...
  • Commented on Dread of Heinleinism
    Robert Prior noted: "Security confiscated her embroidery scissors (blades about 1/2 inch long) because they could be used as a weapon. Meal service in first class came with steel steak knives…" Yup; same deal for me when I flew to...
  • Commented on Dread of Heinleinism
    Trottelreiner "P.S. You can take my multitool from my cold, dead fingers..." That would be the TSA. I'm happy to encourage you. I carry a Leatherman in my backpack for hiking, a large Swiss Army in my pocket for daily...
  • Commented on Dread of Heinleinism
    JBS noted: "I consider myself a liberal and I loved Starship Troopers. I've never accepted the canard that it's a homage to fascism." Me too. This book is emphatically *not* an hommage to fascism. It is explicitly about the desirability...
  • Commented on Dread of Heinleinism
    P noted: "Most of us have severe problems discussing and considering incest rationally because it's one of the strongest taboo in our society. That Heinlein even have the guts to discuss such a topic makes him a greater SF writer...
  • Commented on Dread of Heinleinism
    Elderly Cynic responded to my note about the cliched progression from liberal to conservative as we age: "It's also just wrong. A very large number of people move in the opposite direction, and a good many don't change at all....
  • Commented on Sitrep
    whitroth proposes: "That article was bullshit." Maybe, maybe not. RonaldP provided a link (thanks much!) that supports my suggestion. The Washington Post is one of the increasingly few highly credible sources remaining for journalism. (That's purely subjective opinion; they confirm...
  • Commented on Dread of Heinleinism
    Fred451 noted: "It is true that Heinlein was originally what Isaac Asimov described as a "flaming liberal," and that did change starting about the time of his marriage." There is also a natural progression for (most?) people: When we're old...
  • Commented on Dread of Heinleinism
    Seems like a fair and balanced view of Heinlein. He was a complex guy, and there's lots of nuance. What I took away from Heinlein during my first pass through his works (as a tween and early teen) was the...
  • Commented on Sitrep
    Heteromeles notes: "Yes, that's a problem with recyclables too. If we end up landfilling all our solar panels and the cobalt from batteries, it's no better than coal ash. The problem is that you can't turn coal ash back into...
  • Commented on Sitrep
    RonaldP wondered: "How exactly did Bernie play a spoiler role? He conceded before the convention, did more public events for her than she did (and 3x what she did for Obama), and his voters were less likely to defect than...
  • Commented on Sitrep
    Elderly Cynic notes: "As I understand it, there are now at least half a dozen plausible explanations of why Neanderthals disappeared, and the answer is almost certainly a combination of some of them (and perhaps others). And how interfertile the...
  • Commented on Sitrep
    Nojay noted: "Methane as a greenhouse gas is about 40 times more potent than CO2 per kilogram mass but it "decays" naturally to CO2 with a half-life of about 30 years. CO2 has an effective greenhouse-effect half-life of millions of...
  • Commented on Sitrep
    julian.bond noted: "Waste food -> Methane -> Electricity+Compost may be small scale but it is a real thing." Also manure. One of the rural poverty abatement/environmental protection things the Chinese are doing is providing small-scale methane generators to small villages...
  • Commented on Sitrep
    Nojay noted: "Human and animal sewage methane is a very minor part of the global atmospheric heat retention problem compared to the tens of billions of tonnes of CO2 added each year from burning fossil fuels." True, but the real...
  • Commented on Sitrep
    whitroth: Thanks for a gracious reply about my followup union comments. Once the context is clarified, consensus becomes easier. And to clarify another point, the lower-level union leaders I worked with were generally bright, empathic, dedicated (it was unpaid work),...
  • Commented on Sitrep
    Charlie reported: "Seen recently on the side of The Mound (a steep road in Edinburgh city centre, leading up the side of an artificial mound on what was formerly a cliff), was a roomba-like robot lawn mower, chowing down slowly...
  • Commented on Sitrep
    Nojay noted: "China has a lot of indigenous coal on hand plus mining and transport infrastructure to meet most of the local demand (about 3 billion tonnes a year for the next couple of decades or so)" Unfortunately, it's mostly...
  • Commented on Sitrep
    whitroth noted: "But let's move on to your assertions about strikes. The logical implication of what you say is that no one should strike, Ever. Because it will make other people mad." Let me start out with a definitive statement:...
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