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News: Atlas Hardware Upgrade complete October 13, 2013.

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1  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: Ice Bucket Challenge for ALS goes awry; 2 injured, 4500 without power on: August 21, 2014, 07:50:28 pm
Am I the only person who's getting sick and tired of the Ice Bucket Challenge?

If you care about ALS, just donate some ing money to ALS research. Sorry to pour cold water on this exciting trend, but pouring cold water on yourself does no good to people with ALS.
2  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Congressional Elections / Re: McConnell describes the horror that will ensue if the GOP takes the Senate on: August 21, 2014, 04:43:40 pm
So basically they would force the American public to do without basic government services for an indeterminate period of time, all for sake of letting oil and coal companies pollute a little more and ensuring that wealthy people pay as little tax as possible.

Spectacular way to expand the Republican voter coalition.
3  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: Religion in Latin America 2014 on: August 21, 2014, 11:31:45 am
Protestants are almost a plurality in Guatemala and Honduras? Now I knew that the Evangelicals were big there, but....

Interesting that the Protestant population is still so low for Mexico in comparison.

Any info for Colombia, Bolivia or Peru?

Protestantism is bigger with the indigenos/mestizos than the white Hispanics. The Catholic Church has a history in Central America of screwing over the natives and enforcing unjust hierarchies. Protestantism doesn't have that tainted history there.
4  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Past Election What-ifs (US) / Re: 1976 without Watergate on: August 20, 2014, 11:24:08 pm
Connally-Buckley would be the douchebag-iest GOP ticket possible.
5  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Past Election What-ifs (US) / Re: Obama Wins Illinois US House Seat on: August 20, 2014, 11:22:23 pm
Obama benefited from redistricting which made him the State Senator of wealthy liberals.

This is arguably very critical to his success on the national state.

Had Obama served as a congressman in a VRA district, he would have had to vote a certain way and adopt a certain type of rhetoric that would have made him much less appealing to the white liberals and moderates who pushed him over Hillary in 2008.

He would have been just another "race-baiting" Democratic CBC representative.
6  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Family values Republican state rep. arrested for raping his wife on: August 20, 2014, 10:54:09 pm
I really hate to say this, but is there any evidence that the late wife would not have wanted sex with her husband?  I know young people tend to think us olds have no interest in woohooing or worse, that it is disgusting if we woohoo, but that is a form of ageism.  Certainly, nursing homes would rather not have to deal with people in their care engaging in woohoo, as it creates difficulty for them, so certainly are biased against the practice.  However, if we are going to be so hyper protective as a society as to make it the default that old people can reach the point that they won't be allowed to woohoo with those they were woohooing with, then we should be able to have documents similar to a living will detailing who we want to be able to woohoo with once we are legally unable to give consent.

There is no grey area here, if a person is not mentally capable of consent, there is no debate to be had.

Then you're condemning that person to being cut off from what for most people is a significant part of their life.  You're condemning them to being a living corpse unable to fully partake of life's pleasures.  Frankly, if as a society we decide to condemn them to involuntary celibacy in such circumstances, then I would consider such a status a valid reason to allow the person to have decided ahead of time that if they ever do permanently reach such a state, they'd rather be euthanized.

If you have advanced Alzheimer's or some other state of severe mental impairment, you basically are a living corpse. Sorry, but when you can no longer reason or communicate with others, you have ceased being human and started simply being a hunk of flesh that happens to be able to convert oxygen into carbon dioxide. The person you were before - the person your spouse married - is gone.

There would be more dignity and humanity in that guy just going and having sex with a prostitute than using his wife like some piece of meat to satisfy his own carnal needs.
7  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Which atheist do you have a more positive opinion of? on: August 20, 2014, 09:07:37 pm
In Hitchens' defense, I've never quite understood why the Western Left gives Islamism a pass that it isn't willing to give to fundamentalist Christianity, when the former results in terrorism and international wars killing tens of thousands, while the latter has at worst been responsible for stricter abortion laws and aided and abetted right-wing economics. On the face of it, even mainstream "moderate" Islam ought to be utterly abhorrent to anyone who considers themselves a good liberal, but none will offer even a mild critique of it for fear of seeming uncultured and insufficiently cosmopolitan.
8  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Congressional Elections / Re: CA-17: San Jose Mayor Chuck Reed endorses Ro Khanna for Congress on: August 19, 2014, 10:41:43 pm
There actually aren't that many Asians and there are basically zero blacks or Hispanics.

What's your source for this? I'm at a major tech company right now and there are more than two dozen people on my side of the floor. I'm literally the only one who was born in the United States.

Are you working at a start-up in the Bay Area? I'm not talking about HP/Oracle/Microsoft/etc.
9  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Rick Perry indicted! on: August 19, 2014, 06:27:24 pm

"Turning yourself in" is just a procedural move in this case since Perry is not going to be taken into custody. He was charged so he has to be formally booked and photographed, but he's not going to remain in the jail and it doesn't imply admission of guilt. There may be some restrictions on him traveling or leaving the country, depending on whether the judge thinks he's a flight risk.
10  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Update for Everyone II - Less Boring, More Whoring on: August 19, 2014, 06:24:18 pm
This is very sappy but meh;

I had a very snuggly day with Michael. In bed, snacks, crappy YouTube videos and kicking him with my leg if he took too much of the blanket. There was no effort but it was a superb.

You ate snacks in bed? Do you want ants? Because that's how you get ants.
11  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Angus King accepts the Ice Bucket Challenge on: August 19, 2014, 06:23:02 pm
Putin would totally do it. Barechested, of course.

On a bear. And with vodka instead of water.

In sub-zero weather. And then he'd challenge the bear. And when the bear didn't respond since bears can't talk, Putin would unleash his hardcore judo moves and subdue the bear. Then he would have the bear's mate and young killed.
12  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Congressional Elections / Re: How will Senators up for reelection perform relative to 2008? on: August 19, 2014, 06:02:12 pm
Pretty much all the red-state Republicans will overperform. So will Franken.
13  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Gubernatorial/Statewide Elections / Re: Asa Hutchinson "Computer Science" Strategy on: August 19, 2014, 04:47:29 pm
It's not surprising when you consider that Asa Hutchinson is kind of a throwback to the '90s-era GOP that was very education-focused and viewed what children learned as a public issue, not the private fiefdom of parents who may not know or care to make that decision.

Instead of just saying, "I DON'T WANT MUH CHILDRUNS LEARNIN' THE EVOLUTION!!!", he's actually saying what he does want them to learn.
14  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Congressional Elections / Re: CA-17: San Jose Mayor Chuck Reed endorses Ro Khanna for Congress on: August 19, 2014, 12:36:57 pm
I don't understand the hate of the tech sector, I really don't. Can someone please explain it to me or is it basically money=bad?

A lot of it is the fact that they have this insufferable veneer of progressive do-good-ery even as they perpetuate a corporate culture that is incredibly unfriendly to women and anyone who isn't the "right kind" of white person.

At least Wall Street more or less admits they're exclusionary assholes (though they'll tell you they're exclusionary assholes who we can't possibly do without). And your stereotypical "evil robber baron" like Charles Koch does provide employment opportunities for the working class in his chemical plants and paper mills. In that sense, he's certainly giving more opportunity to average people than Instagram or any other "something something apps something" start-up.

So what's up with this stereotype that all tech workers are white? There are also a crap ton of Asians who work in these companies and a lot of startups are started by Asians. Considering the demographics of this district, having a representative focused on tech issues, and solving national issues using increased use of technology is fairly representative of the district.

And someone has to explain to me why it is supposedly the corporate culture that keeps women away from these jobs, as opposed to the fact that most software engineers in college are men. That is certainly an issue that needs to be addressed but it can't be addressed at the corporate level. It needs to happen much earlier than that. And if you guys took just 5 minutes to actually visit Khanna's website, you would see he addresses this problem multiple times.

There actually aren't that many Asians and there are basically zero blacks or Hispanics.

There have been plenty of first-person accounts of women in tech firms who felt alienated and unwelcome by the "frat house" culture that tended to prevail.

Start-ups are fundamentally elitist and exclusionary in the same way that journalism and high-end PR are exclusionary - you can't play the game if you can't afford it. It's customary in that industry to pay employees equity in lieu of wages. That's fine if you have cash flow from family money, but most people do need an actual paycheck every couple of weeks.

There's also the 24/7 mentality. It's a very collegiate atmosphere of late nights and overlap between work and socializing. It only works for someone who was a traditional college student and has remained in that "mode" by not marrying and certainly not having children.

You're a 25 year old man who married after college and has a two year old? Sorry. You're not welcome. You're a single mom who went back to school part time, graduated at 30 and has two kids in elementary school? Thanks but you're just not a good fit for us.
15  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Congressional Elections / Re: CA-17: San Jose Mayor Chuck Reed endorses Ro Khanna for Congress on: August 18, 2014, 11:41:50 pm
I don't understand the hate of the tech sector, I really don't. Can someone please explain it to me or is it basically money=bad?

A lot of it is the fact that they have this insufferable veneer of progressive do-good-ery even as they perpetuate a corporate culture that is incredibly unfriendly to women and anyone who isn't the "right kind" of white person.

At least Wall Street more or less admits they're exclusionary assholes (though they'll tell you they're exclusionary assholes who we can't possibly do without). And your stereotypical "evil robber baron" like Charles Koch does provide employment opportunities for the working class in his chemical plants and paper mills. In that sense, he's certainly giving more opportunity to average people than Instagram or any other "something something apps something" start-up.
16  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Opinion of Montgomery County, Maryland on: August 18, 2014, 02:18:13 pm
I've never been, but I'm guessing that much lacrosse is played there.
17  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Update for Everyone II - Less Boring, More Whoring on: August 18, 2014, 11:31:35 am
My depression seems to be worsening again.  I don't have much energy or much of an appetite.

Suicide is something you never think you'd actually consider, but sometimes people feel so terrible that that life doesn't seem worth it, and I can understand a little bit how they feel. 

Been there. PM if you need to talk.
18  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Update for Everyone II - Less Boring, More Whoring on: August 17, 2014, 10:57:49 pm
Found out that my brother is leaving for college at the end of the week. I'm happy for him, but at the same time it kind of brings back memories of my own college experience, which I was rather dissatisfied with.
19  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: 1912 Presidential Election on: August 17, 2014, 10:49:40 pm
Old Bill!
20  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Opinion of Amanda Curtis? on: August 17, 2014, 10:26:04 pm
In a way, being a sacrificial lamb candidate could be a very fun job. No one expects you to win. You have nothing to lose. You can just be all, "I do what I want! Zero s given!"
21  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Congressional Elections / Re: What will Lisa Murkowski do in 2016? on: August 17, 2014, 09:44:23 pm
Who's going to be a threat to her by then?  Miller is a joke, as is his main sponsor back then, Palin.

Some other Republican. She's voted much more moderate since her write-in win, I have no doubts they come up with someone else. If Bill Walker weren't running against Sean Parnell as an independent, I'd say Walker is a perfect candidate to knock her off.

These are Lisa's scores from the American Conservative Union:

2003 - 74
2004 - 74
2005 - 83
2006 - 71
2007 - 67
2008 - 58
2009 - 68
2010 - 73
*Begins new term after winning as write-in*
2011 - 50
2012 - 36
2013 - 38

She's moved pretty clearly to the left. I think beating Miller provided her with some proof that she doesn't "need" the Republican Party and can use the goodwill and political capital of her family reputation to vote the way she and her conscience choose to; in a way it's similar to Walter Jones' situation.
22  General Politics / Political Geography & Demographics / Re: Where We Come From, State By State on: August 17, 2014, 07:31:28 pm
On a related note, are there any statistics as to the breakdown of those born in the US by state (in other words, how many Americans were born in New York, California, Texas, etc)?

Born in the US or born in a particular state?

In fact the maps reveal both of those informations.

I wanted to know the former, and I didn't see that listed anywhere. I would imagine that more Americans were born in California than any other state, although I'd also guess that New York would be very high as well (probably second to California). To make it more clear, I'd like to know the number of Americans by state of birth. According to the 2010 Census, about 270 million Americans are native born. I'd like to see that number broken down by state of birth.

Social Security Administration might have that info somewhere.

Most people don't realize that the first three digits of your SSN correspond to where your card was issued to you; for most native-born people, that's the state they were born in.
23  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Is BushOklahoma literally addicted to Braum's? on: August 17, 2014, 07:27:11 pm
If he's going to slowly kill himself with what he eats, he could at least kill himself with something better than Braum's.

Mayyyyyyybeeeeeee...

24  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Gay Teen Commits Suicide due to bullying; his donated eyes are rejected. on: August 17, 2014, 07:25:36 pm
Can you even contract HIV through an eye transplant?
While the discrimination aspect of the ban on homosexual blood/organ donation is disgusting, I can see how a person might reject any type of organ from anyone (regardless of sexual preference) who may have been exposed to HIV. Of course, I am a very paranoid person who doesn't like to take risks of any kind, so this very well may just be my own backward thinking that flys in the face of science. 

If we don't want populations with above-average HIV prevalence donating blood/organs/tissue, we should be forbidding black people from donating too. I'm sure that will go over well.
25  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: Pakistan: A Fourth Coup? on: August 17, 2014, 06:39:12 pm
Pakistan is one of the two successor states to British India - India being the other one. India, by the standards of developing Asian countries, is a success story as far as functional democratic institutions and political stability. It's by and large a more ethically-challenged version of Westminster. Pakistan, by comparison, has been run more like a Central American banana republic or a post-monarchical Middle Eastern state. It's had a revolving door of reactionary military strongmen, occasionally punctuated by a populist civilian leader like one of the Bhuttos or their allies.

Both countries became independent with the same democratic and civil institutions - structures that had been put in place during British rule. So why did India end up being so much higher functioning than Pakistan? How did Pakistan end up having more in common with its neighbor to the west than with its neighbor to the east?

I don't like the direction Nehru took India on the economic front (which India is paying for till the present day) but I must give him credit where credit is due. He laid the foundation for a stable democracy and thankfully that has continued to this day. Why Jinnah failed at doing that is a very good question and I don't have a good answer to that. It should also be noted that after independence from Pakistan, Bangladesh has also been a fairly stable country despite facing much greater challenges than Pakistan.

It should be noted that Nehru was alive and ruled India well into the 1960s, whereas Jinnah was dead in 1948. This left a leadership vacuum. That's one of many reasons for the divergent trajectories.

Another big reason: General Muhammad Zia-al-Huq (well, in terms of understanding contemporary Pakistan and its...um...issues with extremist doctrines of Islam influencing/being used to justify the oppressive political situation).

Though how much of "Islamization" was interrelated with and inseparable context-wise  from the Soviet-Afghan War (same year, FWIW, as  the seizure of the Grand Mosque in Mecca and the Iranian Revolution-geez, 1979 sure was crazy in the Islamic world! Tongue )

Not really a rhetorical question, btw-I'm curious about this.

Zia ul-Haq was a symptom of Pakistan's problems, not a cause. I guess my question is, why has there never been a military coup in India and why does the military exercise so much more power and influence in Pakistan than it does in India? Why are Pakistan's democratic institutions so much weaker than India's even though they both started off in more or less the same position in 1947?
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