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About horangi

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  1. Well if the Atlantic article accurately captures the book (thanks for sharing BTW, I enjoyed the read), it seems more that, despite Graeber's pining for the glory days of gentle anarchy, the central thesis is that humans became a diverse set of organized assholes a lot earlier than the agricultural revolution, pretty much as soon as they got into groups bigger than when everyone literally knew everyone else.
  2. Agreed, this, along with a significant (as in several fold) expansion of the IRS audit team seems like a no-brainer to me. If folks are going to try and evade taxes, lets at least make it hard on them.
  3. Thanks for the tips! I may give it a go and avoid the purely steam-award focused areas as you noted.
  4. Based on your experience, can you avoid save scumming (through better prep etc) or is that largely a 'feature' of the game? I was excited about the previous Pathfinder, but quickly soured on it when I ran into encounters that were way over the capabilities of the party (which is fine) and inescapable once combat starts (which isnt).
  5. On the contrary, I'd posit that Vannevar Bush's creation of the NSF and similar government funded institutes like DARPA and the NIH are at the top of the list for best policy decisions of the 20th century. Much as DMC corrected a few pages back, I support a mixed economy with capitalist bones providing the funding for major significant state directed activities. Its not like the Soviets lost the technological edge because their scientists suddenly ran out of good ideas, they just ran out of money to pay them. Rather I'm suggesting that the capitalist system that underpins the US economy provides the tax base as well as the US led GATT system of trade agreements establishing the primacy of the US dollar that allows the US to support a 4 trillion dollar budget including a lot of good socialized and state directed programs. I just find the far left's tendency to prop up capitalism as a bogeyman to be just as nonsensical as the right's tendency to use socialism as the great evil. At the end of the day, mixed economies with a strong capitalistic foundation pass the fitness test better than the alternatives, partly because the system embraces competition as a feature rather than a flaw. Even those state aforementioned state funded programs are run based on competition.
  6. But at the end of the day, they weren't invented by those other systems. You are making claims with counterfactuals. At the same time the median (not mean) family income in the US is 80K. That's hardly peasant wages for the people at the mid-point of the populace for a country that is apparently treating its citizens like dirt.
  7. Otis is definitely going for the come-back-from-behind award. Who says you can't teach an old bear new tricks! <oops didnt mean for it to be a quote>
  8. I've been curious that the board hasn't been talking more about the labor issues to be honest. I'd say though that your statement is a bit too broad, there certainly are true labor shortages in the high skilled technical and professional sphere, at least regionally. Here in the PNW, its really difficult to get veterinary services for example, because there simply arent enough DVMs around for all the animals adopted during the pandemic. Similarly, master craftsmen are in short supply and so much of the new construction in the area gets 3/4 built only to sit for months to be able to get the electrical and plumbing done. Even with the entry level work, I've been wondering what the alternative was for folks that are eschewing $19/hour minimum (which is what it is here for grocery workers). If folks are finding better jobs, either in pay or working conditions, more power to them. But some of the stats released in past threads are suggesting that folks weren't finding better options en mass, but were choosing to stay unemployed. It looks like much of this is folks choosing to retire (which would create true shortages), but I am not sure that accounts for the majority of the gap. Regardless, it appears that the gap is just speeding along automation. I noticed our local co-op has converted all but two check out lanes (3/4s) into self-service machines and the big-brand grocer has closed the labor intensive offerings like the deli/prepared meal stations and has 2 out of 15 lanes working. The customers are becoming accustomed to using the automated systems, so I'm guessing there wont be a return to the previous norm, even after the labor market softens.
  9. Thanks Karaddin for the well thought-out reply! This makes sense to me. I am guessing that the 'fertile ground' of isolation and alienation has always existed in forms and I can see that covert access to those vulnerable youths being a major change. Its sure a lot easier to spot some creeps trying indoctrinate kids in person, either by parents/adults or our peers. The nihilism I suspect goes in waves, for the GenXrs, it was growing up with the nuclear war threat (and climate change was becoming a consensus idea even then amongst the scientific community). Heck the game Civilization I already had global warming as a feature! As you said, the 'bread winner' family was already not reflective of reality, but I think it took a few decades for it to really sink into society's collective consciousness.
  10. Maybe its a solidarity thing with the astronauts- if they have to wear diapers, so should the folks on the ground supporting them. Also cuts out down time for bathroom breaks- back to work soldiers!
  11. I agree- while its totally not something explored in the books, it does work better in a lot of ways. To the other comments about worrying about it being off-script- I think they really have to in order to make a good story for TV. I just finished the series and, I hate to say it, but Forward to Foundation was the weakest of the series and kinda ruined the mythos around Hari Seldon, so I wouldnt mind if they largely tossed it out of the script. That, and Azimov wrote women as if he had read about them in a history book and decided to try and recreate how they would act accordingly. It was fun reading the author trying to deal with technological advances IRL that created anachronism after anachronism. The poor guy's visionary technologies had a shelf-life of like 20 years before they were obsolete vs the 30k years envisioned in the series. Overall, I love that they are doing this, Psychohistory makes for such a rich sci-fi canvas to paint in.
  12. No kidding! I like the jackets, but I'm guessing the pants were just handed to them before they walked on stage without any measurements taken.
  13. To be fair to BFC and Davesumm, these last couple pages have been illuminating for me as well, as I was close to asking the same question. The 'Friends' reference is what came to mind. Granted neither I nor any of my close friends have been in the dating market for the better part of that 30 year time frame (and the last coming-of-age/dating movie I've seen was probably from the Molly Ringwald era). My general thoughts (not @ kal) to this thread has been- good lord some of the folks here intersect with some pretty toxic communities! Out of curiosity, are things like clubs and activity groups no longer a thing in high school/college? Whats new in society thats driving this sense of isolation? Growing up with D&D and Anime, me and my buddies were never going to get invited to the cool kids house party, but we cared a lot more about getting that paladin the next level anyways. I always saw the rise of folks like Gates and Jobs and such as a vindication and acceptance of geekiness as a socially acceptable part of society. At my better half's university, being a part of RP or table gaming group seems to be the norm rather than the exception, but based on the previously cited article, I'm guessing there must be some significant self-sorting going on through choosing to pursue a degree.
  14. Isnt it more accurate to say that the drink manufacturers dont want to pay out the premium created by Brexit needed to get priority access to the CO2 rather than Brexit prohibiting the import? From the article it sounds like the CO2 manufacturers are prioritizing EU companies- but I would assume if the UK soda folks offered an extra 20% over the EU rate, the solidarity would quickly melt away. I guess its just a question on how much do you want that sweet sweet Coke Zero! The labor shortage on the other hand sounds like a lot tougher Brexit-induced challenge to solve.
  15. I take it you havent worked in academia or the military. Humiliation, abuse, and/or torture (and harebrained stupidity) is par for the course in the real world, even at the highest echelons of power and most prestigious universities. You'd be surprised at how infantile the faculty at a given department in a Ivy League school can act, especially when it comes to basic social skills. Instead of deference to those with the most power, its deference to those with the most citations.
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