Sandbox (2)

For general discussion that would be off-topic in other threads!

757 thoughts on “Sandbox (2)

  1. You people can write up a storm in a few months!

    I’m very glad to see Lizzie back.

    What’s going to be the most interesting to start back with?

  2. Define “interesting.” 🙂

    If you find psychology interesting, try Salvador’s YEC threads.

    If you find Uncommon Descent interesting, you have a plethora of threads to choose from.

  3. This is chilling. http://www.mintpressnews.com/pentagon-legalizes-killing-journalists-as-law-of-war/206990/
    The document in question. http://www.dod.mil/dodgc/images/law_war_manual15.pdf
    and a different take from an alternate source. http://www.globalresearch.ca/the-pentagons-new-law-of-war-manual-is-chilling/5458128

    A consequence of neo-conservative dominance in Washington D.C. in particular and the broader dominance of the (war-loving) right half of our culture war over foreign policy in general? Most probably. The crescendo of imperial power out of Washington at the dawn of the 21st century led those in charge to believe they no longer have to follow the rules of war that have taken hundreds of years to forge. Toss them aside because we believe we have all the power, we will always have all the power, and those with the power don’t need any rules, let alone follow them. ISIL revolutionaries waterboarding prisoners in orange jumpsuits is the mirror our leaders refuse to look into.

  4. walto: I haven’t done that. I’ve said I’m opposed to their monopolization.That’s not the same thing.

    ETA: And, if it’s not clear, I mean monopolization by private interests.

    No it wasn’t clear.

    walto:Not that you care, but in my world the freedom to own guns isn’t the only freedom that civil societies need to curtail.I think there should be no freedom to own air, water, or broadband as well.

    So there goes property along with speech.

    If no one should be allowed to own these things then the natural concomitant is that no one should be allowed to charge for them, hence free. Only the worst fanatics of the left half of our culture war think that the only effort involved in getting any material good to the end user is the waving of Harry Potter’s magic wand. (and of course the analog on the right half of our culture war are the fanatics who pretend we still live in the Fifteenth century (not an industrial, machine-based society) and every single material good produced involves draining all but the last drop of blood from noble producers who therefore deserve never to be expropriated from*)

    I am curious why you think anyone anywhere in the world claims ownership of the very air we breathe.
    Water Law in the US, I’m guessing you are a US citizen, makes it pretty clear that water is a public resource, subject to common law. In my town the corporation that runs the municipal water system is a public one subject to municipal oversight. (the ancestral use of corporations and in my view the only proper use) Such systems have long been assumed to be natural monopolies and therefore must always be subject to public oversight. What private water monopolies are you thinking of? I’m using water law in my comment to Patrick about the inanity of wolf and sheep metaphors.
    You get much less sympathy from me concerning broadband. Beyond simply no one has a right to broadband, or ever should, if you want to stop private monopolies then stop the states from granting them. Municipalities all across the country would love to build their own broadband systems and are being thwarted by state laws, passed at the behest of telecom lobbying, banning them from competing against the telecoms. Google, which is building parallel broadband infrastructure as feverishly as it can, something that is supposed to be impossible in a natural monopoly, is being thwarted almost as much as it is succeeding by state and municipal interference. All the netneut balderdash the FCC is going to indulge in wouldn’t be necessary if we just let real competition happen. Now that the telecoms are going to be regulated they automatically get a seat at the table and a right to participate.

    walto:Anyhow, whether or not aardvark identifies me as a social justice warrior, justice isn’t one of my big issues. Equality and democracy are.

    So maybe I’m a E&DW.

    It’s possible to be more than one thing at once. We are human after all.** We contain multitudes. You’ve got the censorship thing nailed.
    I really don’t see why equality and justice aren’t nearly the same thing. Any person denied one is denied the other.

    *A scene from Doctor Who:The Doctor Dances
    Mr. Lloyd: The police are on their way. I pay for the food on this table. The sweat on my brow, that food is. The sweat on my brow. Anything else you’d like? I’ve got a whole house here. Anything else you’d like to help yourself to?
    Nancy: Yeah. I’d like some wire cutters, please. Something that can cut through barbed wire. Oh and a torch. Don’t look like that, Mr. Lloyd. I know you got plenty of tools in here. I been watching this house for ages. And I’d like another look ’round your kitchen cupboards. I was in an ‘urry the first time. I want to see if there’s anything I missed.
    Mr. Lloyd: The food on this table–
    Nancy: Is an awful lot of food, isn’t it, Mr. Lloyd? A lot more than on anyone else’s table. Half this street thinks your missus must be messing about with Mr. Haverstock, the butcher. But she’s not, is she? You are. Wire cutters. Torch. Food. And I’d like to use the bathroom before I leave, please. Oh look. There’s the sweat on your brow.

    **unless, of course, our name is KeithS and we refuse to bend knee before walto.

  5. Aardvark: Water Law in the US, I’m guessing you are a US citizen, makes it pretty clear that water is a public resource, subject to common law. In my town the corporation that runs the municipal water system is a public one subject to municipal oversight. (the ancestral use of corporations and in my view the only proper use) Such systems have long been assumed to be natural monopolies and therefore must always be subject to public oversight. What private water monopolies are you thinking of? I’m using water law in my comment to Patrick about the inanity of wolf and sheep metaphors.

    Uh, you’re only about 3/4s correct regarding private-water service in the USA.
    Also from wikipedia, probably more relevant than the Water Law article: Water Privatization

    Water corporations have identified United States public systems as potentially profitable. These are United Water, a subsidiary of the French company Suez Environment, American Water and Siemens from Germany which acquired US Filter Corps … [emphasis mine]

    As of 2011, 2/3 of local governments in US had public-employee-operated water supply

    [Privately-owned water suppliers] serve about 15% of U.S. water customers (measured in volume of water handled), take in about 14% of total water revenues, and hold about 11% of all water system assets in the United States, even though the number of such systems constitutes about 33% of all community water systems. Nonetheless, private operation, control, or ownership of local water supply systems has increased dramatically since the 1980s.

    State legal authority for public entities to privatize water systems has aided the privatization trend. States have enacted statutes authorizing municipalities and other public entities to enter into contracts with private entities to supply water to the public. Many states have statutes expressly authorizing public entities to contract with private entities for the long-term operation or lease of public water works facilities, or even to sell these facilities to private buyers, in some cases with few to no significant conditions to safeguard the public. … A recent Pennsylvania case reflects the trend of courts to allow sales, leases, and long-term contracts, even in the absence of statutory authority, on the theory that water services are a proprietary, not governmental, function of municipalities and therefore can be transferred to private entities.

    Water Privatization Trends in the United States:
    Human Rights, National Security, and Public
    Stewardship
    Craig Anthony Arnold, 2009

  6. If no one should be allowed to own these things then the natural concomitant is that no one should be allowed to charge for them, hence free.

    That’s too confused to bother responding to.

  7. OK, that wasn’t very nice of me. So I’ll give a clarifying example. No private person is allowed to provide automobile registrations. That doesn’t make getting your car registered a cost-free activity.

    There’s no “natural concomitant” there–just confusion.

  8. There are all kinds of “commons” things that tend to become public utilities.

    Roads, and water have been provided as both private services and public utilities. I am a utilitarian. That is my ideological bias. I have no commitment to any mode of government, but I recognize dysfunctional institutions when I see them.

    Currently we have a postal service and lots of private carriers. In the last year or so, the private delivery services have contracted with the post office to provide final delivery. I get stuff from Amazon delivered to the city by UPS and then to my door by the postal service. I have gotten Sunday deliveries at no extra charge.

    As long as services are competitive and responsive, I have no political bias against one mode or another.

    I have Medicare, but Medicare in my state is administered by Blue Cross. Such hybrids are becoming the rule.

  9. hotshoe_,

    It’s probably been far too long since the US suffered a really vicious water war. People forget too easily why private water rights must always be subservient to public interests. The water authority for my town was set up so that it’s charter can’t be sold to private interests though my state’s republican supermajority has been interfering with local politics in an extreme way and the future is always in flux.

    walto:OK, that wasn’t very nice of me.So I’ll give a clarifying example.

    Thank you. It was your original statement I was replying to so the source of the confusion is yours.

    No private person is allowed to provide automobile registrations.That doesn’t make getting your car registered a cost-free activity.

    Now you are moving the goalposts. Your original statement was (paraphrase), “there should be no freedom to own (air, water, broadband)…”, not ‘no private person’. The public most definitely does(and should) own all public waters. Private interests (I beg your indulgence to use a broader word than ‘person’) can have rights to water (as hotshoe_ obligingly demonstrated) and those rights can be translated into rents that other people have to pay though usually it works out that the public sells(public rent) itself water through its proxy, the government, to cover the costs of providing the service. In your ‘clarifying’ example the government also owns the registration (and the plate, in my state they may take either of them away, with cause, at any time), so again, someone owns the registration and indeed (as you point out) they do charge for it.

    Ownership is the social construct we use to decide who gets to charge for things. If there is no ownership, there is no charge.

    The libertarians I interact with in person really hate that first statement and as soon as Patrick realizes what I just said he could likely blow a gasket and accuse me of not being a real libertarian.

  10. petrushka:
    There are all kinds of “commons” things that tend to become public utilities.

    Roads, and water have been provided as both private services and public utilities. I am a utilitarian. That is my ideological bias. I have no commitment to any mode of government, but I recognize dysfunctional institutions when I see them.

    Currently we have a postal service and lots of private carriers. In the last year or so, the private delivery services have contracted with the post office to provide final delivery. I get stuff from Amazon delivered to the city by UPS and then to my door by the postal service. I have gotten Sunday deliveries at no extra charge.

    As long as services are competitive and responsive, I have no political bias against one mode or another.

    I have Medicare, but Medicare in my state is administered by Blue Cross.Such hybrids are becoming the rule.

    Right. That’s what I was talking about.

  11. Aardvark: The libertarians I interact with in person really hate that first statement and as soon as Patrick realizes what I just said he could likely blow a gasket and accuse me of not being a real libertarian.

    As I understand it, there are various divisions of libertarians, including a bunch of Henry Georgists who oppose private property in natural resources like land, water and broadband. I consider those SJWs my allies, though, like petrushka, I’m not a libertarian. I think the idea of natural rights is a touchy-feely thing, like dandelion fluff. It blows away if you actually think about it or question what the hell they might be for more than a minute.

  12. walto,
    I wrote this in word immediately when I got up before I even opened my browser. I have no idea if you have even bothered to reply to my rudeness. Your original statement was unclear to me and you graciously clarified it. To do that you had to move the goalposts. To insinuate that you were doing something underhanded by that was wrong. To use single quotes around clarifying was unwarranted. Your statement about private persons and ownership is perfectly clear and though I am ideologically opposed to it, it is a perfectly legitimate position to hold.

  13. Before everyone starts holding hands, I have one further pointed question, directed to Walto:

    When I view threads on my Mac your carrot points up to the right and looks very, well, interested in the discussion.

    But on my iPhone it droops down to the right and seems bored.

    What’s up with that?

    ETA: oops, wrong thread. I’ll just leave it here.

  14. Aardvark,

    The libertarians I interact with in person really hate that first statement and as soon as Patrick realizes what I just said he could likely blow a gasket and accuse me of not being a real libertarian.

    I don’t blow gaskets anymore. I point out the real meaning of what statists say and shake my head sadly when they persist in their delusions.

  15. Reciprocating Bill,

    When I view threads on my Mac your carrot points up to the right and looks very, well, interested in the discussion.

    But on my iPhone it droops down to the right and seems bored.

    What’s up with that?

    I just politely avert my eyes from walto’s avatar, regardless of degree of tumescence.

  16. When I view threads on my Mac your carrot points up to the right and looks very, well, interested in the discussion.

    But on my iPhone it droops down to the right and seems bored.

    What’s up with that?

    Weird. I have no clue. Cary Carotene, Godess of all carrots, maybe?

  17. Patrick:
    Aardvark,

    I don’t blow gaskets anymore.I point out the real meaning of what statists say and shake my head sadly when they persist in their delusions.

    Complete certainty about what others mean along with accompanying condescension and a tinge of mild disappointment at the delusions of those with views different from your own are always nice traits to have. I’d definitely nurture those.

  18. walto,

    Complete certainty about what others mean along with accompanying condescension and a tinge of mild disappointment at the delusions of others are always nice traits to have. I’d nurture those.

    I’m just trying to get in touch with my inner SJW.

  19. I just politely avert my eyes from walto’s avatar…

    I know what you mean. FWIW, I have to quickly scroll past the open-mouthed, toothy, screaming penguin at the top of the Moderation page. That thing scares the bejesus out of me!

  20. There’s a thread at Sandwalk “On the total length of all DNA molecules on the planet”.

    It’s going to be a really big number. Maybe karisosfocus big or Dembski big.

  21. petrushka,

    There’s a thread at Sandwalk “On the total length of all DNA molecules on the planet”.

    It’s going to be a really big number. Maybe karisosfocus big or Dembski big.

    During one of my discarded attempts to explain mutation and probability to Charlie M (those darned models!) I estimated that the total length of Paramecium falciparum genome in 10^20 cells would extend, topically, to just past Pluto.

  22. petrushka,

    Off to NYC to visit a new grandson, for a few days. Maybe lurking, maybe not.

    I’m working in NYC next week. If you need a break from family, let’s meet for a drink.

    Heck, bring the new one and give the kids a break.

  23. If anyone wants to grill Barry Arrington in a forum that he frequents without fearing an automatic instaban, I’ve seen him in the “Official” ID Facebook group. Just putting that out there.

  24. Patrick: I’m working in NYC next week. If you need a break from family, let’s meet for a drink.

    Sorry, I missed your invitation. I was only there for two days, just barely enough time to say hello to the kids and grandkids.

  25. Just for fun:

    His [Alexander Dumas] response to a man who insulted him about his African ancestry has become famous. Dumas said:

    My father was a mulatto, my grandfather was a Negro, and my great-grandfather a monkey. You see, Sir, my family starts where yours ends.

  26. I’m having a hard time finding comments on how to post latex.

    I’m quasi versant in latex on my webstites, but I don’t know how to get it to appear here at TSZ.

    Sorry for asking a question again that has been addressed before, but I can’t find the discussions.

    Thanks in advance.

  27. Try putting [latexpage] at the top, then just use latex math expressions as usual.

    Testing with \pi

    (added in edit) – there is a non-visible [latexpage] at the top of the source text for this comment.

  28. Some problems:

    The preview doesn’t help to check that the syntax is correct.

    When I try to edit the comment, WordPress, redoes my latex equation, and the result is the garbage in comment posted previously.

    I seriously doubt I could write an OP without it blowing up since I might have problems previewing and editing.

  29. stcordova: The preview doesn’t help to check that the syntax is correct.

    This is true.

    When I try to edit the comment, WordPress, redoes my latex equation, and the result is the garbage in comment posted previously.

    It depends on how you edit. If you can find the post in the comments page (from the dashboard), then I think you can click “Quick Edit” on your own posts. That gives plain text editing. The GUI editing breaks latex.

    For an OP that has not yet been published, used the TEXT tab for editing, then the use PREVIEW to see what will appear.

  30. Thanks Neil.

    I’m debating wether to just write something outside of TSZ and link to it, just so I can have a cleaner formatting in my presentation.

  31. stcordova:
    Thanks Neil.

    I’m debating wether to just write something outside of TSZ and link to it, just so I can have a cleaner formatting in my presentation.

    I’m sure Lizzie would be OK with me changing permissions to allow you to post-edit to get clean formatting, given the circumstances. You will, I’m sure, agree to abide by the site rules and not use those permissions to delete or edit comments in any of your own comment threads.

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