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Showing content with the highest reputation on 07/03/2022 in all areas

  1. 4 points
    It's worth remembering that the only really consistent Trump policy was to cancel every program, treaty, policy, or law from the Obama administration, and replace it with nothing. He cancelled the CDC's collaboration with the Chinese to monitor for emerging viruses, with the result that we were unaware of the Covid outbreak for months. He ignored the national pandemic response plan that was developed after the H1N1 outbreak, and failed to develop any national plan of his own. He went so far as to tell states they had to order their own PPE, setting up a scenario where states had to bid against each other and drive up the price, then he seized shipments destined for blue states and sent them to states whose governors sucked up to him. It's true he did allow the government to fund fast-tracked vaccine development (though that was a "no-brainer") but then he failed to develop any sort of a plan to distribute the vaccines, and blocked the incoming Biden administration from getting the information they needed to develop their own plan. Apart from Covid, he cancelled the program for dealing with black lung disease, and replaced it with nothing. He withdrew the US from the WHO, leaving us with no mechanism for collaborating with other countries to deal with a world-wide pandemic. He withdrew from the Iran nuclear deal and replaced it with nothing, with the result that Iran stopped abiding by the deal and is now closer to a nuclear weapon than the have ever been. I could go on and on and on. Hatred of Obama is not a substitute for a national policy on anything. Hundreds of thousands of people died as a result, and people will be worse off for a long time because of Trump's obsession with erasing Obama from history.
  2. 3 points
    The Supreme Court of Canada said it very well in the 1988 case R. v. Morgentaler. “Forcing a woman, by threat of criminal sanction, to carry a foetus to term unless she meets certain criteria unrelated to her own priorities and aspirations, is a profound interference with a woman’s body and thus an infringement of security of the person.”
  3. 2 points
    People have a tendency to define "intelligence" in the way that supports their position.
  4. 1 point
    "Understanding" can be defined as a sort of data compression - mapping high-dimensional data to a lower-dimensional representation that contains the concepts or model of the thing being "understood". So if you ask, does AI understand things? Yes, yes it does. But you might say, "if you can truly understand something you should be able to create it - like if you understand English, you should be able to generate (i.e. speak) it". AI can do that too. AI can generate handwritten letters and numbers, and like us it could be slightly different every time, and they'll have their own style similar to, but not exactly like how they were trained. Same with voices. Humans have created machines that can fly to the moon, and even outside the solar system. We regularly drive around in vehicles that are many times faster than the fastest human being. Our brains weigh on average 1.5kg, consume about 15 watts, and there are more than 7 billion of them around the world, millions more are "manufactured" every day. Brains are just a collection of cells. Why would creating "intelligence" be off-limits somehow but spaceflight isn't?
  5. 1 point
    Hi folks, I found this to be interesting reading: What Happens if Americans Stop Recognizing the Legitimacy of the Supreme Court? We Asked a Constitutional Scholar. (wweek.com) Jerry Baumchen
  6. 1 point
    Hi John, Just like all religions. Jerry Baumchen ETA: Joycelin Elders said, 'The Republicans love the fetus & hate the child.' IMO she was 100% correct. Joycelyn Elders - Wikipedia
  7. 1 point
    Just goes to show that no one should be judged by how they dress.
  8. 1 point
    You can't have a legitimate Federal election where the rules of the individual elections that make up the result are different for each state. For any conclusion that is based upon a set of data you HAVE to have a consistent set of rules to play by if the result is going to be valid. You can't have one set of data being generated in a different way to the others because it invalidates the whole data pool. That's what the supreme court is TRYING to do. Do you really want to live in an America where every single election is rife with deliberate manipulation?
  9. 1 point
    Does that even matter? Support for a full ban on abortion is at less than 20% in the US. Support for widely available abortion is over 60%. When it comes to arguing the case, the pro-choice movement has won. They have made their case to the American people and they have comprehensively succeeded in convincing them. This isn’t a discussion about abortion anymore. This is just another discussion about the myriad anti-democratic manipulations and abuses of political procedure perpetrated by the Republican Party in order to force their radical ideology onto a populace that does not want it.
  10. 1 point
    They are doing the opposite. In the Roe v Wade decision they took power from the people and handed it back to ambitious governments.
  11. 1 point
  12. 1 point
    Let's not forget that Republicans voted against expanding the Child Tax Credit, against increased funding for baby formula, and against paid family and medical leave. Claiming to be pro-family is pure hypocrisy. It's just about control.
  13. 1 point
    The arguments against AI come in two forms: 1) the "I'm/humans are special" argument, or 2) quantitative "current AI is nowhere close to doing X". The "special" argument pretty much says that there's something magic about human intelligence that AI could never do. (Usually creativity: they compare computers isolated from a random environment, to humans in a random environment to give humans the advantage) The quantitative argument is basically "current AI can only do this now, therefore in the future it will also be the same". Which ignores the reality of technological progress. And the funny thing is, you'll see a lot of these views with people in tech - more often programmers. AI researchers are more split in their opinion.
  14. 1 point
    I wonder what sort of hits you'd get if you fed that text into a plagiarism checker? Seems to be a frequently overlooked ethical and legal question with AI generated text - it doesn't pull it out of thin air, it has to learn from large training data sets. If that training data is copyrighted in any way but was just pulled from broad data-scraping practices, how badly tainted is any future output? Anyway, for my contribution re: "AI is coming for everyone's jobs"...
  15. 1 point
    Crypto is an interesting underlying tech concept (blockchain) that will never do in the real world what it's proponents claim it can. It's a market that's absolutely saturated with charlatans and grifters, because the thing that makes it attractive to a certain personality type - "Hey isn't it cool how this is unregulated and a pure free market, no government interference, whoo!" - is the exact thing that attracts the scams. You can do cool things with crypto, but what it's *actually* used for is a giant ponzi casino. I've made thousands off it in recent years, but if it all went to zero tomorrow I won't have lost a cent of my own money.
  16. 1 point
  17. 1 point
    Parrot: There are many scenarios as you know, so I have a few in my head that could work, but I realize that what happened may not even have occurred to us. So for me it comes down to probability versus certainty. Some options are simply more likely than others. Here goes. He hijacked the plane and got the $200k, risked his life (maybe he only had a few years left to live). So he is highly focused on getting away with the money. I subscribe to the 8:12 jump time, and that the plane was north of the river, and that the winds were blowing north/northeast. Therefore I find it less probable that he landed in water, and even if he did, the chances of him landing in deep water are slim. The diatom research helps give some credibility to him not landing in the water too. The Tina Bar money was 300 bills of 10,000. 6%. You'd think we would have found some other bills in the area. It's possible they are still out there, or that the bills traveled 100 miles to the ocean. Possible, but is it probable? I believe he lived. It's possible the parachute near the Hession store was his. If it wasn't, then I'm thinking he buried it or took it with him and disposed of it far away. So no money, no parachute, no nothing. The money may have gone into circulation. We just don't know. There was no way to systematically find those bills, contrary to what some people say. He could have spent the $20s. There were billions of those series in circulation. Even if he spent 10% of the money, that is still a lot of money to a blue collar worker in 1971. His goal could have been a surgery, or college for his kids, etc. He may not have needed all $200k. The Tina Bar money could possibly have dropped from the plane later than when he jumped. We do know the plane flew over the river at some point. It is odd that the amount found and in the configuration it was found is likely the same amount that he took out and offered to Tina. He could have done the same to someone on the road when he landed. There are many ways that $6000 could have been separated. If he landed in the water, I'd have a better feeling that the money washed into the ocean, assuming it did not get caught up anywhere. I'm not sure if there were any dams or locks, etc. on that river then. Maybe someone can answer that. If I had to speculate, this is what I would say. He got on the steps with $200k or with $193k. He landed with most of it. He stashed most of it, and escaped, my guess is by rail. I can explain that if people want to hear. The benefit of stashing the money is that if he is caught and stopped, he has no ties to the hijacking, none. He could have found some garbage bags and buried the money and come back years later. He goes home, gets the rest of the money later, spends some over a period of time, does not get greedy, keeps working, and eventually retires. I often wonder sometimes if he had cancer and wanted to provide for his family, but then maybe beat the cancer or prolonged his life. If he had mental issues then he might have known he'd end up in a VA hospital or mental hospital. Not fun, but not prison. I've read of a few hijackers that were only incarcerated for a few years.
  18. 1 point
    Such a defining statement about your character, compassion and nature.
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