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wmw999 last won the day on July 12

wmw999 had the most liked content!

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  1. If maintaining the status quo means maintaining inequality, because the rich people will get pissed off, maybe the status quo isn't great. Money is not the only determinant of success, even here in the US, where we have glorified and on occasion deified it. The model we have of kowtowing to rich people, because they pay the bills, doesn't seem to be improving things. While you may prefer the times of the 50's, when we had a booming postwar economy, remember that there were, in fact, significant social and political rights inequities. I think we can agree that political rights inequities are bad, mhmm? I don't think there's a perfect stasis, because the more humans there are, the more people who will decide to exploit that stasis for their own gain. And the larger volume of people engaged in that means that eventually some who are really, really, good at it will come along. The founding fathers didn't think the Constitution would last 150 years, and some were fairly convinced it might not last 50. While I don't think it's time to just trash it and go for all-out revolution, we are approaching the level of financial differential of the Gilded Age, and I don't think that's a good thing. Wendy P.
  2. Dunno if you want to do that, Bigun. Skybytch lives in !California! Wendy P.
  3. We'll do just like we've done with infrastructure, energy consumption, and climate change. Kick the can down the road. Those cans on the road eventually rust away. Doesn't work that way with large-scale systemic issues. Wendy P.
  4. We're going to need a bigger crisis than the recent financial meltdown for the debt to become a priority again. Because, well, our congresscritters (who have a large influence on spending) are more interested in the mechanism of their jobs than the purpose of their jobs. There won't be a perfect solution, because someone's going to get hurt. With the current financial, power, and political climate, that's just not going to happen. The Republicans never met a rich business person they didn't want to give more money to, and the Democrats never met a problem whose solution couldn't be engineered best by the government. Until those rich businessmen become the problem, it's not going to change. The last fairly honest effort was that gang of 8 (or six, or whatever) who tried to come up with something about 15-18 years ago. It was ugly, but it was at least starting to try. Before that, we depended on a roaring stock market in the 1990's and a fairly honest bipartisan effort. That bipartisan nature was, of course, pissed away in the most recent stock market runup by giving money to, yes, rich businessmen. And women. Wendy P.
  5. I think you're absolutely right about that. Another thing that comes into play is the increasing energy-effectiveness of buildings. Including retrofitting older buildings to be more energy-efficient. Right now we tend to have a "I can afford it, so it's OK" approach to energy consumption. Kind of like the impact of recycling on trash streams (when it's practical). The mantra is reduce, reuse, recycle -- with reduce being first for a reason. If a home is very energy-efficient, then not as much power is needed to maintain it regardless of anything. Same for energy -- if your house is tight and well-insulated, you don't need as much to heat it. If it's sited appropriately and shaded from the afternoon sun, you don't need as much to cool it. It'll never be perfect, but focusing on the lack of perfection to avoid making changes is, well, chickenshit. Wendy P.
  6. There goes the world's fifth-largest economy, and up go all of the tariffs on the food grown there. (source) Wendy P.
  7. wmw999


    My question would be what were his sources and why does he think that? Because, well, I'm also related to a retired public health doctor (CDC and all that), and her take is entirely different. Yes, there is some cooking of the numbers to secure funding -- that happens in nearly every single business in the country, whether it's a public entity to secure funding, or creative accouting to legally escape taxes. I know that around here the majority of the COVID deaths listed COVID as the precipitating event -- i.e. yes, the guys at the Soldier's Home were old and generally ill (why else would they be in a retirement hospital), but 75 of them died within a month or so of each other, with contributing factors like understaffing meaning that workers were pressured to come in even if they were sick. In addition, the ventilation system in the building was substandard, and the more crowded the patients were (due to understaffing some wards were combined), the more likely they were to die. It was the public health doctor's retired infection control nurse wife who provided this specific information; she was contracted to come in and help them get some control over the pandemic in their facility after the bulk of the deaths, and she wrote a very comprehensive report for the state (which is now finally going to fund a replacement for that facility). Some people see a single case of cheating as a reason to go to unbelievable expense to stop that cheating -- but generally only if it suits their needs. Marginal behavior that they or people/institutions they identify with is simply "exploiting the rules," marginal behavior that they don't identify with, or that are engaged in by "other" groups, is cheating. Wendy P.
  8. Oh my — now there was a legend! Wendy P.
  9. Decentralizing power generation really seems to me to be a good path; more resilient, and it means that more people will pay attention to what they use. It’s not as practical in denser areas like cities, but if Massachusetts, with its northern latitudes, can generate 1/4 of its power using renewables, with small-scale solar being the largest contributor (source), then some of the sunnier states should be able to, too. Wendy P.
  10. wmw999


    You’re absolutely right, of course. Doesn’t make it less irritating, though. Wendy P.
  11. Ah! Welcome to dz.com and thread drift Wendy P.
  12. Still here, still postahoring... Wendy P.
  13. I’m not sure Bigun’s opinion can be improved on. Wendy P.
  14. What, to you, Winsor, differentiates the “races” besides skin color, and sometimes distinctive facial features? And why, besides the social treatment, does it matter? If there is nothing of significance, then doesn’t that kind of mean that race is a social construct? And that therefore its social construction is worthy of study — especially since there’s a well-documented history of it’s being used in social and legal contexts? Wendy P.