Saturday, September 24, 2016

Another Fine Graduate of The Fournier School at Broder University

Afternoon Thread


Big Scary Black Man

Always shooting at the white women.

Heckuva Job

Corbyn wins Labour leadership again. I suppose those who plotted against him can plot to win their next election. I keep hearing only they have plan to do so, but I'm not sure they actually know what they're doing. Maybe that's just me.

Morning Thread

From what I'm reading, the first person who needs to pee at the debate, loses! That's what it has come to.

Friday, September 23, 2016

Friday Cat Thread


Happy Hour Thread

It's Friday!!!

Shit Is Fucked Up And Bullshit

One of the stupidest (and persistent) ideas out there has been that The Internet has led to people being stuck in their little community bubbles, seeing only the information they want to see, exposed only to things that please them.

Anyone who thinks that has never found the "turn internet on" button on their personal computer machine. The internet is one big nonstop argument. Anyone who uses the book of faces gets to see the horrible things people they used to be friends with have to say about the world, and the equivalent of those email forwards your annoying uncle used to send you from his AOL account.

Anyway, when I say Trump can win, what I usually mean is: Trump can win, and this shouldn't be a big surprise. A large chunk of your fellow Americans, including your friends and relatives, will vote for him. This shouldn't be a surprise because those of us who have paid attention have known all along that this was what the Republican base wanted, and a big chunk of Republicans will vote for anyone with an R after their name (same as true of Democrats, but to a much lesser extent).

I know this because I read the internet, and sometimes it's horrible.

America's Worst Humans

Glenn Reynolds.

People who encourage others to do fatal violence really anger me. I doubt ye old perfesser would actually gun the accelerator into a crowd, not because I think he's too good for that (actually he's a monster who thinks it's uncontroversial that everyone else is too), but because he's too cowardly. People might call him a monster!

Armchair generals we will always have with us.

"the revolutionary transportation technology"....

...that doesn't yet exist.
In mid-July, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority announced that the L train, one of the main transit connections between Brooklyn and Manhattan, will close down in January 2019. During the 18-month outage, workers will address repairs necessitated by Hurricane Sandy damage. It’s a big problem for Brooklyn — and one of the largest disruptions in the subway system’s century-plus history.

But the timing of the shutdown presents a unique opportunity: to make New York’s rising tech hub a test bed for autonomous vehicles — specifically, an autonomous vehicle-based taxi system in the tract of Brooklyn served by the L

So what can we do?

Here’s how a rollout would work. New York City would invite one or more companies planning to test autonomous vehicles to deploy a fleet of autonomous taxis in Brooklyn — soon. The city could offer heavily subsidized rides to anyone wanting to cross to and from Manhattan.

Ah. "heavily subsidized." A cunning plan!

The grifters know that the public trough is the only way to keep this scam going. The fierce independence of the techbro!

And people wonder why I obsess about this stuff. Let technology that doesn't even exist solve a problem it wouldn't be capable of solving even if it did! With subsidies!

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Late Night

Rock on.

I See The Future

If Trump wins, he will be the first legally elected president since George W. Bush, and perhaps our reigning monarch, the greatest Republican, no the greatest person, in American history.

If he loses, he won't really have been the real representative of the current Republican party, just a pretender, an aberration. As such, Hillary Clinton's election will be illegitimate. She won't have really won an election. It isn't even clear, really, if a woman is allowed by the constitution to be president. Certainly not what the founders intended. We'll have to wait until the next president, or perhaps the one after that, before anyone new gets on the Supreme Court.

America's Worst Humans

Glenn Reynolds.

Thursday Crass Commercialism

I'm no expert on the latest tech gadgets, so do your own research and don't listen to me, but so far I've been pleased with the Roku stick as a toy/tool for cordcutters or wannabe cordcutters.

Please Provide Massive Government Subsidies For My Vaporware

Cool plan, techbro.

To speed the transition, governments may give drivers financial incentives to replace their cars with autonomous vehicles, similar to the Cash for Clunkers program offered in 2009 to get gas guzzlers off the road, Google’s Medford said.

And people wonder why I obsess about this...

All Our Dreams Torn Asunder

Oh well...
Triple Five, owned by Edmonton’s Ghermezian family, scrapped the Xanadu name and veered from the retail-heavy plan, adopting the entertainment component from two of its properties, the Mall of America in Minnesota and the West Edmonton Mall. In May 2011, it projected American Dream would open in 2013 and would attract 55 million visitors a year. Since then, the company has scaled back its forecast to 40 million visitors.

Oh well...
The company took over the failed Xanadu project in 2010 and workers finally returned to the site this summer after signing a Project Labor Agreement in April. The opening date for American Dream Meadowlands, now estimated at fall 2016, no longer sounds unrealistic.

“I’m not a betting man, but I would bet on it,” Jeff Sheckter, Triple Five’s executive vice president, said in July.

Fool me once, don't get fooled again, two months later...Wait, didn't we already hear this?
EAST RUTHEFORD, N.J. (CBSNewYork) — After 12 years of financial troubles and delays, the American Dream megamall and entertainment center in the Meadowlands could finally open in fall 2016.

The target date was announced by the mammoth complex’s developer, Triple Five, WCBS 880’s Sean Adams reported.
Time keeps on slipping, slipping...

Initially proposed in 2003, the project's first developer went bankrupt and the second was forced to surrender control after losing financing. After sitting idle for two years, a third developer, the Triple Five, was brought in to complete construction in 2011.

The developer now claims that the American Dream Meadowlands mall will be completed in 2017 — with one caveat: They'll need $1 billion in bonds to be sold by government entities to provide the remainder of the financing required to complete the project.

For realsie this time, pinkie swear.

The developer expects to finish American Dream in summer 2018.

Morning Thread

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Stop Killing People

The killing of unarmed black people by police happens so regularly now that I can't keep the details straight from one to the other. Of course we only hear about some of them, and we mostly only hear about the situations with video evidence or other details which make it difficult for the police to credibly claim that they were threatened.

But even being threatened shouldn't be enough for a summary execution. It's their job to know how to de-escalate situations. That might not always work, but often it seems they don't even think about trying.


Just some filler.

Afternoon Thread


I Knew I'd Lose This War

Back before I obsessed about driverless cars (won't work), I obsessed about replacing gas taxes with mileage fees. The reasoning used to be that gas taxes were so unpopular that the only way to raise them was to institute an exciting new tax that was much more complicated and expensive to administer and enforce. No this never made any sense to me. The gas tax also has the benefit of mildly pushing the incentives in the right direction in that it rewards improved gas mileage (including zero emission) and therefore smaller cars (much less road damage). But a mileage tax always sounded cool because reasons, and now I guess the fact that you can have a technology doohickey that you could have even without the tax is even another reason.

But, really, the main reason to stick with the gas tax is that you already have an administration and enforcement agency on an industry - gas stations - that is pretty highly regulated anyway. It's a lot more difficult to bill/collect/administer for every driver than it is to do it for a relatively small number of gas stations. Full employment for collections agencies, I guess. Also, too, out of state driver problem.

But nobody listens to Atrios, and the new tax is cool!

What's Good For London

London has been slowly clawing back the disastrous privatization of rail where possible. Meanwhile, privatized (and subsidized - twofer!) public transit elsewhere in the country has had fare hikes and service reductions. Force local authorities with limited taxing ability to subsidize private operators, and then cut the budgets for those authorities.

Not too surprising that the rest of the country wonders why London gets all of the nice things....