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silver Harloe

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foo on health care Mar. 22nd, 2010 @ 02:22 am
Here's health care in my weird mind:

say I spend $1 a month on insurance.

I can send it to the government, where I know that some 53 cents to go to debt repayment and social security, 18 cents to go the military, and the rest maybe goes to the something useful (including my health insurance)


I can send it to a corporation who feels no obligation to tell me how it is spent, but sure as hell seems to be making a huge profit and is well known for trying to deny coverage to people.


Under the recent bill, I can send to it to a corporation under threat by the government, getting the worst of both worlds. Yay :)

BUT, I'm happy with the provisions requiring insurers to stop cutting people off at the last minute. So, um, yah. hurrah?

I should write more... Apr. 17th, 2009 @ 12:39 am
Tonight on The Colbert Show was a fellow taking credit for my idea posted here : http://silverharloe.livejournal.com/10294.html , because he managed to figure a way to turn what I thought was a simple, 1-2 page topic (tops) into a whole book. Sigh.

(Of course, it was probably probably independent invention - after all, the first response to my original post was a, "hey, I thought of that, too!" Still, it's more fun for the moment to pretend that I was ripped off. I'll get over that by morning).

Dear "Conservatives," Apr. 15th, 2009 @ 10:57 pm
Please stop acting like any attempt to stem modern Corporatism is a blow against Capitalism. Thank you.

'nother debate Oct. 15th, 2008 @ 07:50 pm
This one was more debate-like, though often the candidates spoke right past each other.

This was an exchange, which illustrates most of the debate:

McCain: "Obama is going to government mandate health care and fine Joe the Plumber"
Obama: "Actually, Joe's fine would be 0 because he's running a small business," followed by a very, very careful explanation of his system which doesn't mandate a damn thing.
McCain: "So, as you can see, Obama is going to government mandate health care, and fine Joe the Plumber."

It's like they were each talking to a wall. That example goes one way, but there were just as many going the other.

"debate" Oct. 7th, 2008 @ 07:27 pm
while I still disagree with using the word "debate" to describe any of the formats used so far (and by "so far," I mean, "in my entire adult life where I've been paying attention to these so-called 'debates'"), anyway:

who won tonight's debate?

uh. I think they both lost. I came out of it liking them both a lot less. long winded and bickering and often ignoring the question asked. blah.

however, I must particularly disagree with one thing, Obama said, in paraphrase, "we're going to try to get Pakistan to support us against the terrorists in their country, but take Osama out if we get the chance." McCain called that "telegraphing your moves" repeatedly and condescendingly. huh? How is saying, "we will kill you if we can" a telegraph of anything useful (or even unknown)? it's like saying "we're going to get a touchdown if we can" is useful information in football (yes, I know it would be useful under certain circumstances, like a fourth down with under 20 yards or something, but the analogy here is more like announcing it a week before game start).
Other entries
» glargh
feeling ill. weather changes usually do this to me.

but the real reason I'm posting. I found this article: http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/localnews/2008229116_debatetruth05m0.html

which just points out flaws in arguments from both candidates (for governor of washington), seemingly without particular bias. is there something like this for the presidential election?
» Something I liked about a Game
I dunno how many of you have heard of or read the source material for or actually played The Amber Diceless Role-Playing Game, so I thought I would share something about it I was reminded of recently.

One of the things it had was a "sort of" skill point system, but unlike other RPGs, in Amber you could go into debt for your skill points.

The thing is, if you do that, things begin to go "bad" for you - you become unlucky. mildly or majorly depending on the size of your debt. The idea was that these points didn't just represent skill progression, but also your outlook on life. If you went negative, it meant you saw the world as negative, and it responded in kind.

Years later, this also came up in cognitive therapy I was undergoing for my depression. They had many names for it, but the best was "filtering," it boiled down to - if you're depressed, you tend to filter out things that don't reinforce your depression. If you're angry, you tend to filter out things that don't reinforce your anger. When you're depressed, you find the most negative connotations in things people say to you, even if the words are neutral or kind. When you're angry, you find the most hostile connotations in things people say to you, even if the words are neutral or peaceful.

In cognitive therapy this was taught so that you could learn to remind yourself whenever you hear something to stop and think about it twice and go over it logically and see if it's really as depressing or hostile as you thought.

But I've also found it to be a tool for assessing other people's characters -- at it's simplest level, when someone is constantly accusing everyone else around them of something, it's probably more a reflection on their self than the people around them.

Just some stuff I was thinking about and remembering.

By the way, another cool thing I learned about assessing people back in high school is the value of alcohol in this regard. People become more who they really are when drunk - and so you know someone who is really comfortable when themselves and projecting their honest self normally when the only change you notice is in their grace and speech slurring, not in their behavior.


incidentally (I guess by now we're into the "P.S." zone), it works the other way around, as well -- if you you have a positive outlook you tend to filter out negative things. if in Amber DRPG you have an excess of skill points, good things happen to you...
» gotta love economics

» On Property
(warning: contains some small measure of hyperbole)

(from http://forum.caravelgames.com/viewtopic.php?TopicID=26465&page=1#258439 ):

Beef Row wrote: "... I've heard some people argue used game shops are hurting console developers at least as badly as piracy is supposed to be hurting PC developers. If the moral objection to piracy is that it fails to properly reimburse game developers, would that make buying used games as unethical as piracy? (Even more unethical perhaps, since you're supporting a company that profits off selling games without paying the developer.) ... "

Banjooie wrote: "It's fairly simple. It is a matter of duplication. If I purchase from you one apple, you are minus one apple, and plus one amount of money. If I then sell that apple, you got your money, you don't care. Maybe some other dude would not then buy an apple from you, but you have given one apple, and received one money for one apple. You are still even. That is used games.

If I purchase from you one apple, and use that to grow an apple tree. I then sell those apples to other people. You have sold one apple, but lost countless apple sales because of it. You are thus angry.

Now: You can argue 'it's his apple, he can do with it what he wants'. This is where we discover why software is different again: Intellectual Property. The apple we've been using so far is a standard, public-domain Gala apple. Now let's say it's some sort of SuperApple. Your farm has like, bred a special kind of apple, and you've paid to trademark it and all that. Now, you're selling them the apple, but the apple is coming with a piece of paper. A contract, if you will, that says, 'You agree not to grow trees from the seeds of this apple'. They agree to that contract by buying the apple. By growing a tree from that apple, they're then breaking the contract, and thus, the law. So, basically: It's a matter of whether it stays a 1:1 trade of game for money or not."

So here's my reply: "Bad example, Banj, in light of it's comparison to Monsanto, which we all know is, in actual fact, a nexus of evil so deep that Dante couldn't fathom how to get down to it, so twisted that they make North Korea seem like Eden, and so depraved that Satan forbids his demons to work there lest they give evil a bad name.

The "real" answer is close to what you wrote, but perhaps a little more fundamental. For all of human existence, creation has fallen under a simple model of "making stuff" which can be distributed and owned. The music, movie, and software industries have been trying desperately to make their products fit that model because that's the only kind of economics our society is prepared to understand. You can't get a bank loan to start a business based on another model, you can't even get government recognition that what you're doing is fundamentally different than the prevailing model. As technology slowly eradicates the solutions which they put in place to try to keep their media "protected" (i.e. to keep their media stuck in the old model), they turn to the government to find solutions for them -- "we give up. we can't make people treat these new things as old things, so just jail anyone who doesn't fit our straitjacket". and the government says, "sure. we don't understand the new model, either. so those are probably dangerous subversives we're incarcerating."

Now it becomes very easy to understand. Piracy is breaking the model and offends all the established economic sensibilities enshrined in our corporations and governments and even religions since the beginning of human understanding. Used game stores, on the other hand, perpetuate the old model by treating the disc as a "manufactured widget" which can be "owned.""
» Oh. My. God.
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