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About dogstarman

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  1. What is most surprising is that they're not even trying to make a flimsy case for this move as beneficial in any way for the consumer or the content-provider market. Just appeasing naked corporate interests with no shame whatsoever.
  2. It really isn't obvious which homes are good and which are a problem. A nice looking lobby and good PR means nothing for the well-being of residents. You can't really know until after you put a loved one in there. What really matters more than anything else is the compassion of the staff from the administration all the way down to the lowest level aide. These are things which you can assess only by being there.
  3. Obviously the nursing staff behavior was horrific, but I wonder if the family had specified DNR instructions? As bad as ignoring cries for help is (and that is not uncommon in skilled nursing facilities), it would be worse to perform CPR on a patient that had left "Do Not Resuscitate" instructions.
  4. Well, it's not really "income" until the student can put it to use. These are people at the beginning of very promising and lucrative careers who will be paying serious taxes upon graduating with an advanced degree. They will typically make over 100K immediately upon leaving academia. The stupidity of taxing tuition benefit is that significant numbers of students will now have to slow down their academic progression to work more to pay their tuition benefit tax (and have that taxed as well). A number of them will not be able to finish and leave early and end up paying less taxes overall because their salary after leaving academia will be lower without the advanced degree. All this.... Just so millionaires can keep more of their booty acquired through capital gains--- that is, money earned by simply having money.
  5. There are iconic master paintings which would go for an even higher price than that if they ever went to auction. It isn't an exaggeration to say that some works of art are "priceless." People are willing to pay such sums because they believe it to be a treasure whose value will not decrease over time; something that transcends money or real property. There will only ever be one Leonardo, there will be ever more human beings.
  6. These kind of agreements and, in fact, even international "law" itself don't don't necessarily have well-defined "punishments". The initial goal here is to slow down the increase in greenhouse gas production, because eventually we're going to have to start lowering it. Whatever gets accomplished in three years will be a fairly good gauge of what might be possible later on. The ultimate "or else" for climate change can be read in the 800+ page "National Climate Assessment" that miraculously just came out. I am not optimistic that anything substantive will be done before we start getting a taste of what's to come environmentally.
  7. Well, well, well, isn't that strange? You're right that Hillary isn't an opponent anymore. Why would Mr Trump be so interested in pursuing her on this long shot? Hmm.... Could it be that Trump and Sessions have, all of a sudden, become really really keen on the pursuit of Justice? That they deeply care about the integrity of government?? Pfft... Or is the simplest explanation the best one: that this is yet another bulls--t attempt at distraction from the multifaceted downward spiral of Trump's administration?
  8. Glad to see that advertisers have recognized the liability to their reputation when they pay money to a known disinformation campaign (the hannity show). I wrote to 23andMe as a customer about their advertising on the Sean Hannity show after he had a run a softball synchophantic interview with Bill Oreilly. They wrote back and indicated they're reviewing the feedback. I guess the Roy Rogers thing finally pushed them over the edge along with Keurig. Keurig is perfectly fine for offices and waiting rooms. It makes a decent cup. Unfortunately the capsule cost (for Keurig or nespresso) really adds up. Once I added up the annual cost of nespresso capsules, I decided it was better to invest in an actual espresso machine and Burr grinder. After a very long learning curve (including a barista training class and a strict schedule of preventative maintenance), I now make fancy cappuccino for the wife and I every morning, and it's cheaper than capsules.
  9. Stories about these 90+ year olds who still go to work are certainly heart warming on the surface. Anybody that can still work a full time at a job at 70 is an outlier, let alone older than that. If that's what these individuals want to do, more power to them. It makes me wonder, though, if there's a subtext to such publicity. People are living longer thanks to the ability of medical science to keep bodies from dying. By the time someone crosses 60, however, they're pretty much done when it comes to physically demanding work. The ability to do knowledge work starts declining too. It used to be that people worked until sometime in their mid 60's, retired, and then died of a heart-attack not too long after that. Now we are looking at retired folks living past their savings and/or drawing from social security almost for as long as they've worked and culminating with an indefinitely long stay in assisted or skilled nursing facility (~5-12K/month). This puts stress on the system. It's no secret that certain elements want to shred the social safety net. Some talk about increasing age of retirement yet again. Social security seems to come up as "fair game" for cuts and privatization from time to time. Medicaid and medicare require a constant battle to keep from being snipped continuously. I feel that as vicious cuts to the social safety nets become serious, we will see a flurry of propaganda and disinformation that highlights "cheerful old folks" working well into their 70's and 80's. Why retire when you can work 'til you drop?
  10. Yeah, sure, 50-something politcos/physicians who are neighbors often get into brawls resulting in multiple broken ribs over "trivialities." Happens all the time, nothing weird about it, and it doesn't imply any character defect on the part of those involved.
  11. And THAT is always a mistake. Seriously, never, never, go to HR in any company for any reason. They're OK if you're signing up for benefits or other routine functions, but going to HR with any "problem" sets off a chain of events that quickly gets out of hand for the employee, often ending up in the hands of high level out-of-touch execs who have a penchant for making snap decisions.
  12. It all depends on what you mean by "freedom". Many people use that word prominently, but few bother to discuss what it actually and specifically means. It is not at all obvious. Are there a set of core requirements that must be met for a place to be called "free"? I'm not so sure and I don't think that many socialist governments are "less free" than our government in the USA.
  13. Bergdahl was an immature, unstable kid who made a stupid impulsive decision. Based on his previous record of behavior in the coast guard, one could argue that it wasn't particularly wise to let him enlist. As for what he did, these kinds of things are going to happen when the military must rely on men who are barely out of their teen years. There's no benefit to locking him up, it's not like he is going to do it again.
  14. While I don't think he's actually going to be impeached, I don't think he's going to get reelected either. More importantly the politicians that were dumb enough to align themselves with Trump are going to face major challenges. Trump may be whipping up his base but you can only scam people at that scale for so long. He is simultaneously enraging Democrats and pragmatic Republicans and a lot of people are going to be motivated by hate come next election.
  15. Well, I don't know where you get YOUR information, but sorry, something is just not right if a 2-person operation gets a short-term multi-million contract, let alone a 300 million whopper. I do know something about contracts and procurement, though I admit 300 million is far, far out of my experience. That said, "Wardogs" is about right for the purpose of illustration. I don't know how you can think this operation can be legit-- maybe you think they called the X-men to do the job?