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  1. Past hour
  2. Solar Eclipse, Amazon Recall

    Additional testing was done this evening with a green laser light. The 532 nanometer beam of light does not pass through the UV400 claimed lens. Two further discovered tests cannot be done without an appropriate UV and Infrared meters. While metering equipment exists, acquiring them this late in the game is not a viable option. Current weather predictions are partly cloudy for Monday, potentially rendering this exercise a moot point.
  3. Today
  4. White Supremacist Protest Violence

    Antifa and White Supremacists are, as Rand would put it, "Opposite sides of the same fraudulent coin." If both groups are wrong, then how is it even remotely possible that one can be "marginally" better than the other? For you to think so is to destroy the entire idea that there exists an objective "right" and and objective "wrong." Neither group represents an ethics predicated on Individual Rights in the vein of Locke, Jefferson or Rand. You are playing right into the hands of moral relativism - which is the foundation upon which identity politics rests. Your view is completely indefensible.
  5. White Supremacist Protest Violence

    Marginally better. Not much though. The issue, here, is racism. I find the violence by antifa to be irrational, to be sure, but it doesn't necessarily seek the extermination of capitalists. Antifa is not Stalinism, there's a difference. Nazis and the KKK seek a purification of society for the sake of race. I find that belief to be worse than seeking the end of capitalism by dismantling racism. Besides, identitarians and white nationalists do intend to end capitalism for good by fascist measures. They supported literal Nazis as well. In other words, at Unite the Right, the organizers were worse by going beyond anti-capitalism with their racism. I wasn't attracted to them, I said sympathetic. It was only when I first heard and thought about the term late last year. I could grasp how they felt only from remembering how I felt in high school. You're wrong about why. The main reason was weakness of my support for freedom of speech. It's not weak anymore. Either way, as far as danger to society today, the Unite the Right people are a greater threat. Antifa are not as well organized by their nature as anarchists. They'd be squashed so fast. They are politically weak even.
  6. White Supremacist Protest Violence

    Two news articles on the wonderful Governor of Virginia. http://dailycaller.com/2016/11/06/exclusive-virginia-gov-pardons-60000-felons-enough-to-swing-election/ (The Daily Caller has published ARI articles) http://www.washingtonexaminer.com/terry-mcauliffes-latest-scandal-just-the-tip-of-the-iceberg/article/2592889
  7. White Supremacist Protest Violence

    I found the following article after I made the above post. It supports exactly what I said. http://thehill.com/homenews/campaign/347012-centrist-dems-push-back-on-warren Excerpts: Moderate Democrats are pushing back at Sen. Elizabeth Warren’s (D-Mass.) [Pocahontas, for those who don't keep up with politics] view that progressives have taken control of the party. “We can't win the House back with progressives running in swing states,” said former Rep. Ellen Tauscher (D-Calif.), a surrogate for 2016 Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton who is leading the Fight Back California super PAC aimed at winning back seven House seats in the Golden State. [....] Warren’s remarks at the conference in Atlanta last weekend sparked an instant headline from The New York Times saying she was taking aim at moderates. And while she didn’t mention either of the Clintons by name, the Times wrote: “Ms. Warren sent an unambiguous message that she believes the Clinton effort to push Democrats toward the political center should be relegated to history.”
  8. White Supremacist Protest Violence

    I'm having trouble believing that someone who claims to be an Objectivist would make such a nonsensical claim that there is a difference between the two. I suppose you also think that Stalin was morally superior to Hitler. Edit: I really cannot believe that you would make such statement. It probably explains why you were attracted to Antifa.
  9. Yesterday
  10. White Supremacist Protest Violence

    Equally responsible, not really. Unite the Right was a hate rally where many attendees were PLANNING to fight rather than appeal to law enforcement. That takes the edge for responsibility. Or just leave that part aside. They are not equally reprehensible. Is antifa reprehensible? Yes. Are identitarians like Robert Spencer reprehensible? Yes, and a little worse. Are neo-Nazis reprehensible? Yes, and A LOT MORE than both. There is no moral equivalence of them, as the prior two are decidedly racist. Are you suggesting that antifa is equally as bad as the KKK? On moral grounds, racism requires an even more depraved view of man than antifa. Not all immoral action is equally reprehensible. "He forced the Left to adopt such an extreme level of identity politics" ...and the right.
  11. Immigration as related to loyalty

    Item 3 is not my position - nor is it in any way a "justification." It is what I believe will be one of the reasons that the Bill will receive bipartisan support. I could, of course, be wrong about that, but my entire post is what I think will happen to the Bill as it moves thru Congress - regardless of what I think of its merits or demerits.
  12. Immigration as related to loyalty

    This is not a principled point. This is saying that "in order that Democrats receive less support, we want fewer low-skill immigrants". This would be protectionism, that is, you would keep some people out only because they don't fit a highly politicized and pre-defined agenda of the "American Worker". There's no such thing as a unified American Worker. If someone says they support American interests, at least on this forum, they should mean individual rights of its citizens, not the particular needs of a specific group. Citizens only need to expect defense from initiation of force - not from labor unions, not from immigrant low-skilled workers interfering with their employment. This is why I also think loyalty is irrelevant. I would eliminate any possible element in RAISE that can be construed as "American Workers' " interests. What counts as far as RAISE is merit. The rest harms your case you're making. I wouldn't generally want RAISE, but as long as there is opportunity to alter immigration away from lottery completely, I want that. 1, 2, and 4 are arguable points. 3 I think is a horrible justification. It's the very thing I don't want. It would be bad for an economy if that's the reasoning.
  13. White Supremacist Protest Violence

    One thing that drives the Dem's bat-shit crazy about Trump is that he keeps setting their agenda for them. By his taking the position that both sides are equally reprehensible and equally responsible for the violence (which is true) he is forcing the Left to defend and champion the Antifa thugs as "victims." The only thing this will serve is to drive even more centrist Democrats and Independents into Trump's camp. This is what happened in the general election last year. He forced the Left to adopt such an extreme level of identity politics that it drove many on the Left and Center away - either they voted for him or they stayed home. It drove Hillary nuts that she couldn't pivot back to the Center in the general election. Hillary is as corrupt as they come, but she is not part of the "far Left" like Bernie or Pocahontas.
  14. White Supremacist Protest Violence

    In a related incident Arrests Begin Following Durham Confederate Statue Toppling. Taqiyah Thompson, the arrestee, is a member of the Workers World Party, a communist party faction. This is all street theater. There is no genuine groundswell to remove the statues that no one cares about, its fomented bullshit.
  15. Immigration as related to loyalty

    Care to spell out the logical progression of that one?
  16. Immigration as related to loyalty

    Regarding Point Number 4 above, here is something that not many people know about. Remittance . From the link: $133,552,000,000 in remittances was sent from the United States to other countries in 2015.
  17. Immigration as related to loyalty

    There are several points to consider when reviewing the proposed RAISE Act: It will probably receive bipartisan support because it depoliticizes immigration by moving to a points-based system. As it works its way through Congressional Committees, BOTH the total number allowed AND who is covered by the Act will almost certainly change i.e. go up. By focusing on numbers, and less so on the move to a points-based system, both "sides" of the issue will be able to claim victory on the compromised final number. This is a standard negotiation ploy in the passing of legislation. Start with a low proposal that allows for an increase in the numbers as the legislation moves thru the process. It's no different than making an initial low-offer on a house, and then meeting somewhere in the middle for the final price. The so-called "protectionist" provisions (which Don alludes to) of limiting low-skilled workers in favor of higher-skilled workers who can demonstrate self-sufficiency is something that Labor Unions, largely supporters of Democrats, would most favor. Most highly skilled workers do not belong to Unions. This is one of the reasons why the Act will probably receive bipartisan support. It's not a coincidence that the RAISE Act was announced at the same time that NAFTA is being renegotiated. It will serve as a tool in the renegotiation process. Here is a pretty good detailed review of the Act. The author of the piece agrees that, in some parts, the number is too low, but that it can be easily changed without altering the overall goal of the proposal. Also, the number will fluctuate over time regardless. https://thefederalist.com/2017/08/03/everything-need-know-raise-act-without-reading/
  18. Four Things 1. Over at Hackaday is an articleabout difficulties you probably wouldn't have anticipated about colonizing Mars: Mars doesn't have a local electrical ground. The Earth does because the ground is electrically conductive and accepts charge from any charged object that comes in contact with it. Due to the large mass of a local Earth ground, it accepts this charge without becoming very charged itself. The moisture in the Earth ground aids its conductivity by enabling ions to move around. Mars' ground, however, is dry and while it contains ice, that ice further decreases conductivity.Yep. That one went right past me. Interestingly, that fact would affect architecture for any colonists. 2. Item One on this list of "Five Things You Must Not Do During Totality at the Solar Eclipse" is photograph it. For one thing, professional photographers will be all over this. For another, consult the rest of the list. 3. In an entertaining articleabout "The Confusing Way Mexicans Tell Time," a travel writer passes along the following method one American expat deals with the strange way they use the term ahorita, whose literal translation is "right now," but which is used quite differently there: ome expats living in Mexico just cannot get used to this more fluid way of measuring time. After moving to Mexico from the US, Elizabeth Wattson found a unique way of working with Ahorita Time. "Whenever my boss said 'ahorita', I would respond by asking 'ahorita when?'. I just couldn't work with this vague concept of something getting done at some indeterminate point in the future," she said. I think I'd pretty quickly start doing something like that, myself, in such a situation. 4. Forget everything you thoughtyou knew about lichens right now: He has shown that largest and most species-rich group of lichens are not alliances between two organisms, as every scientist since [Swiss botanist Simon] Schwendener has claimed. Instead, they're alliances between three. All this time, a second type of fungus has been hiding in plain view. Okay, so that was hyperbole: You're still right about them being compound organisms, but this recent discovery is still really neat, particularly if you have a biological, or maybe a botanical bent. -- CAV Link to Original
  19. Immigration as related to loyalty

    I'm reading the current 8 U.S. Code § 1151 as hosted at Cornell.edu and then comparing it with the proposed edits of the bill. Apparently the current law has way more immigrants allowed under the family provision than the employment provision. The current number for "Worldwide level of family sponsored immigrants" is 480,000. The "Worldwide level of employment-based immigrants" is 140,000. The proposed change of the law is only to the family sponsored immigrants and the new number would be 88,000. The number for employment-based immigrants would remain unchanged at 140,000. So yes, the end result is about 392,000 less people would be admitted because they were related to someone already here. That's where the "low skill" presumption comes from. Note that once a family-sponsored immigrant is admitted he can sponsor further family-sponsored immigrants. A sentence from the Wikipedia article states "As of 2009, 66% of legal immigrants were admitted on the basis of family ties, along with 13% admitted for their employment skills and 17% for humanitarian reasons." and this is sourced to a Congressional Budget office report linked here. Doing my own math and rounding down the ratio, the current law has the net result of admitting 6 immigrants who are not examined for employ-ability for each one who is so examined. Other provisions of current US immigration law are at work to admit people that do not count toward the limits because about 1 million people get legal permanent residency status every year but the numbers given above (480K plus 140K) are quite a bit less than that.
  20. Immigration as related to loyalty

    Fair enough. Then I take it that you also disagree with the White House website press release? It reads:
  21. Immigration as related to loyalty

    Yes, I disagree with that analysis.
  22. Alibaba is still listing these for sale, while Amazon has issued a recall. https://www.alibaba.com/product-detail/2017-wholesale-protect-Eye-solar-eclipse_60708159288.html?spm=a2700.7724857.main07.23.2bd13975SmLNZ1 The packaging lists a UV400 rating, and having worn them indoors, a 100 watt light bulb is not visible. Outdoors, the sun appears as a somewhat a bright circle on an otherwise darkened background. In conversation with an individual who has had some experience in welding, the experience was somewhat reminiscent of wearing number 14 welding eyewear protection. Given the short notice, and the spike in prices for authenticated eye protection (read a once in a 99 year window opportunity to generate an artificial shortage to create what is described as a 'black market' in this commodity), combined with couching terms about these glasses "may" or "might" be unsafe, along with others suppliers that have been determined to be counterfeit, it raises the specter of a popular selling item being used as a foil to divert more monies into a last minute market. I don't know what the company paid for their lot. They combined it with a 1/2 hour "party" centered around the time of the eclipse, and earmarking the markup ($5.00 a pair) toward a currently focused upon charitable cause. With the eclipse less than 4 days away, and all the locally suggested brick and mortar establishments being out of stock, this turned into a research project to ascertain whether the $10 should be reclaimed by turning in the glasses and missing the direct viewing opportunity, or if there is more here than meets the eye. So far, the searches have been centered on how the recall has been couched by the various news media outlets (only a few of them showing this pair of glasses specifically.) Moving the search into the UV400 category, there is a NASA link touting "One of the most widely available filters for safe solar viewing is a number 14 welder's glass, available through welding supply outlets." The eclipse is going to occur over the course of about 20 minutes. I've no intention of staring that the phenomenon for the entire duration. Part of that time will be spent without the extra protection on observing just how much an 80% coverage impacts the general viewing area. On reconfirming that these glasses are, in essence, as dark as a welder's shield, I intend to use them accordingly at this point in this particular juncture.. If anyone asks, all I can tell them is that I did my own research to the best of my ability. C'est la vie.
  23. Immigration as related to loyalty

    Yeah, I have no idea; I'll leave such projections to the legislative analysts. But it baffles me how it's like pulling teeth just to get simple agreement over an idea like "Donald Trump supports a proposal which would reduce legal immigration," whether we agree that's good or bad, or whether we can agree on specific figures, or etc. Blows my damned mind. But to try to bypass distractions like NAFTA, etc., and get back to the main topic? There's no moral reason to restrict immigration, as such. (Inspecting folks to ensure they're not terrorists? Sure. That's a fine thing to do, but it is not the same thing as a cap on, for instance, the number of Mexicans that can enter the US in a given year.) The suggestion that keeping foreigners out, because that's good for American workers (in restricting competition and thus keeping wages high) -- this is protectionism at its worst.
  24. Immigration as related to loyalty

    “(1) IN GENERAL.—The number of refugees who may be admitted under this section in any fiscal year may not exceed 50,000. " This one of two specific numbers I saw. The other number was this: " “(c) Worldwide level of family-Sponsored immigrants.— (1) The worldwide level of family-sponsored immigrants under this subsection for a fiscal year is equal to 88,000 minus the number computed under paragraph (2). " I'm not sure though how that 88,000 is different than it is now - it takes going down like 4 layers and some familiarity with reading legislation to know what that minus amount is anyway. So, it still might be true that the legislation reduces legal immigration by a fixed number, I just still need a source that can show what that 88,000 means. This is far from a 500,000 fixed reduction. Looking at the text, the green card reduction is clearly way exaggerated. I can't find a primary source. an effect that can still be altered. It's not "hard coded" that legal immigration is halved. To me, if the number is halved as an effect, it suggests that the law needs a few amendments. But this is the concerning thing: https://www.cotton.senate.gov/files/documents/170801_New_RAISE_Act_One_Pager_FINAL.pdf See the last part. This is a supporter of the bill, and he cites the projected decrease of legal immigration as a good and desirable thing. That it's good to keep low-skill workers out in general. This is the usual "they took our jobs!!!" reasoning which is not based on any discernible economic policy. Grames may be able to formulate a rational immigration policy (despite my disagreement on a lot of things). The actual politicians though? That's not the reasoning. Populism is the basis. It's concerning that low-skill immigrants are seen as threats to America. (This would be protectionism, aka bad.)
  25. Immigration as related to loyalty

    I was making no argument as to whether the changes brought by this act are good or bad, but I was challenging the idea that there are no proposals (supported by Trump) to reduce the number of legal immigrants. I also mean to make no defense of Wikipedia generally, but the analysis there (and on the National Review website I'd also linked) is that this act will reduce the number of legal immigrants. Do you disagree with that analysis? If not, and if Wikipedia is accurate in reporting that Trump supports the RAISE act, then wouldn't you agree that it is incorrect to say that there are no proposals to reduce the number of legal immigrants?
  26. Last week
  27. Immigration as related to loyalty

    Lol, good to see that someone on this forum actually understands what's' happening. I thought I was pissing in the wind. An increase in the GDP (and jobs in general) should also have resulted in an increase in wages in Mexico - but, of course, this never happened. The wages are kept artificially low thru currency manipulation by Mexico's Central Bank (at the bidding of foreign owned companies). NAFTA has no provision for sanctioning the devaluation of the Peso. From the article: The other key policy is that Mexico’s government simply let its currency drop. Since NAFTA, the peso has weakened nearly every single year — compounding the advantages on price that Mexico already has over US manufacturers. During 1993 NAFTA hearings, Democratic Representative John LaFalce of New York warned that the treaty had “no mechanism to coordinate monetary policy between the United States and Mexico.” The big fear was that Mexico would weaken its peso for competitive purposes once it joined NAFTA, and the United States would be unable to do anything about it. The Peso Crisis just pre-dated the enactment of NAFTA in 1994, and of course, Mexico swore up-and-down that they would never do it again, lol. NAFTA was originally seen as a way of creating parity in wages among the US, Canada and Mexico. Instead, it's turned into a huge swindle benefiting three key players. 1) The Democrat AND Republican establishment who receive corporate donations to fund their campaigns and line their pockets. Both groups who are, by the way, united against Trump. 2) The oligarchs who own Mexico - since foreign companies must "team up" with local Mexican business owners (and just guess who actually owns those local Mexican business shells....). Funny how many billionaires were created in Mexico under NAFTA. 3) US and other Transnational Corporations who write legislation in the US, Mexico and Canada benefiting themselves. This and other multilateral trade agreements are a race to the bottom....
  28. Immigration as related to loyalty

    A Wikipedia link concerning a current controversial political issue is not going to be objective description. You should have linked here instead. The RAISE act eliminates the tendency for "chain" immigration to occur, where one immigrant qualifies and then their whole family follows. The same number of immigrants can come in under the changes of the RAISE act but they will be less concentrated into "lucky families" and more immigrants overall have to qualify under the regular provisions instead of the family clause. The RAISE act also reduces the total number of refugees admitted, but under current arrangements the refugees we take are from some third country (not the country of origin or the US) and are split up among several final destination countries. A particular refugee may never have intended to end up in the US. They may not wish to be a good citizen of the US and they usually cannot be vetted for criminal background. So, justified change IMO.
  29. White Supremacist Protest Violence

    But he did. The "problem" was that he did not take sides on this essentially leftist vs. leftist battle because he condemned both sides equally. I suspect that merely because Trump is not black and not communist that some racists and fascists think that is inherently advantageous to them. Trump can't do anything about that, nor should he be expected to apologize for being white and against communism.
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