albaleo comments

Posted in: Combating antisemitism today: Holocaust education in the era of Twitter and TikTok See in context

We must always take sides. Neutrality helps the oppressor, never the victim.

Before taking sides, I think it's best to be informed, otherwise some may end up on the other side. I recall my son expressing disbelief about the holocaust when he was young. Not out of prejudice - simply because he couldn't believe its scale. Along the lines of, "Are you saying 6 million were killed? You must be joking." So I pointed him to photos and tales from soldiers who arrived at concentration camps at the end of the war. He started believing it happened.

I don't understand why this is continuously brought up over and over again when it has nothing to do with us? Millions of other people died, and a hell of a lot more under communism than the nazis, but we never hear anything about things like the Holodomor...

I think there's a difference. Violent horrors have occurred throughout history, but most mass killings are indiscriminate. "Kill them all" versus "Kill those who go the synagogue".

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Posted in: Search underway for radioactive capsule missing in Australia See in context

If it was kept long enough and they were exposed for long enough they could have some more acute effects, including...

Are they thinking of Spiderman effects?

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Posted in: Dentsu officials admit to Tokyo Olympic test event bid rigging See in context

the only thing that's dreadful about that view of Tokyo is the fake Statue of Liberty and ...

They should put that statue where it belongs - on top of a love hotel.

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Posted in: EU official says Russia shifting war focus to NATO and the West See in context

I hope Europe and the US have a goal beyond providing arms to Ukraine. Providing arms will simply prolong the war and the suffering. What is the goal? If it's simply to return all the currently Russian controlled lands to Ukraine, then I think it's doomed. Russia will not accept that. Ideally, it would be for the people of the contested areas to decide their futures. Can that still be achieved? Perhaps not, but I've yet to hear any European or American politicians even mention the idea of self determination. Meanwhile, the people of those areas will continue to suffer, with or without tanks.

-3 ( +20 / -23 )

Posted in: Willie Nelson to celebrate 90th birthday at all-star concert See in context

He's done a lot. But the song that clings here is his singing of Alway On My Mind.

I know, I'm just a romantic old fool, but thanks Willie.

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Posted in: Device transmits radio waves with almost no power – without violating the laws of physics See in context

Ask Schrödinger's cat!!

If you interact with the cat, you'll have messed up the experiment. Schrödinger won't be pleased. :-)

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Posted in: Tech giants Google, Twitter, Microsoft, Amazon, Facebook parent Meta and others have laid off tens of thousands of staff in recent months. What sort of a future do you see for these companies? See in context

Apple hasn’t laid off a single worker.

I think Apple is a little different from the companies mentioned as its income is mainly from hardware sales.

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Posted in: London takes aim at public peeing with splash-back paint See in context

But I do wonder if SOHO is an abbreviation of a longer name.

It's not entirely clear, but it's thought to be an old hunting call (similar to tally-ho). There are other theories.

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Posted in: Court orders Japanese gov't to pay damages over forced sterilization See in context

It's staggering really, not even so much that it was implemented in 1948 but that it went on until 1996

But the 1948 law was a big change from previous laws. You could argue that prevention of birth of people with intellectual disabilities, mental illnesses or hereditary disorders was to prevent suffering of children. I think the controversial factor was that the decision could be made without the person's consent. Note that compulsory sterilization occurred in the USA until the 1970s, and probably in other countries too.

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Posted in: Dystopian Japan doomed to impotent stagnation if not ultimate extinction, says magazine See in context

is more dependent on domestic sales than other developed nations. Japan’s exports in 2022 accounted for 12.7 percent of its gross domestic product – versus Germany’s 35.9 percent and Italy’s 26.3 percent.

I'm not sure that is a useful statistic. Generally, smaller countries and those with smaller populations have a larger export-to-GDP ratio. Netherlands is 83% while the USA is 10%.

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Posted in: New York Times makes a surprising pick for the best city to visit in Japan See in context

This list is totally biased.

But also educational. Probably half the population of Scotland had to google Kilmartin Glen to find out where it is. (Or was that only me?)

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Posted in: 4 dead, 3 others unconscious after predawn fire at Kobe apartment See in context

Several of the residents smoked despite the building having a no smoking rule.

Sprinklers, a legal requirement only for apartment buildings with 11 floors or more, were not installed in the complex.

If this was considered a regular apartment building, then I don't think smoking rules can be applied. If it was considered something else, such as a social welfare building, then I don't think the 11-floor sprinkler rule applies. It seems a little confusing.

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Posted in: Sakhalin exception: The Russian energy Japan can't quit See in context

$5M is nothing these days.

Have you checked the average net worth of people in different countries? The link below is for the median in Japan - about $120,000 - less than nothing it would seem, much like me.

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Posted in: Climate change trauma has real impacts on cognition and the brain, wildfire survivors study shows See in context

This is clearly explained in the article, climate change is causing more and more natural disasters

But is it? Natural disasters (and non-natural ones) have occurred throughout history. In some ways, we are better prepared to deal with them now than in the past. I don't imagine the trauma was any different for those who suffered. The link below suggests there were far more deaths from disasters 100 years ago than now. Note that I'm not denying that climate change is real - I'm just questioning the term "climate-change trauma".

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Posted in: California shooter kills 10 at dance club; motive unclear See in context

Realistically, we don’t need to talk about the second amendment, that’s not going away, so I want to know what people should do.

Where to start?

I guess we could define the word "arms" more narrowly. It generally means "weapons", and despite that constitutional wording, I understand various kinds of weapons are not allowed in the US. So if you can't possess nuclear weapons, why should you be able to possess guns. Maybe restrict rights to possession of slingshots.

There's something about a well-regulated militia in that amendment. So maybe require that people belong to such a thing before they can possess arms.

Or maybe you could limit the places that people can keep and bear arms - e.g. only in a closet.

But gee, that amendment just makes no sense. Give it up! If you want guns, manage it with normal laws.

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Posted in: Meta says it is reviewing call to make adult nudity policies more inclusive See in context

We maybe need to rewrite that John Cooper Clarke poem to refer to Instagram.

I've seen the poison letters of the horrible hacks

About the yellow peril and the reds and the blacks

And the TUC and its treacherous acts

Kremlin money, all right Jack

I've seen how democracy is under duress

But I've never seen a nipple in the Daily Express

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Posted in: Police trying to identify victim after dismembered body parts found in two suitcases See in context

I wish i could say that i felt confident the Japanese authorities will swiftly apprehend the killer.

There's not much information, but I guess the man whose body was found in the river may be the main suspect.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

Posted in: New Zealand's southern waters experiencing marine heatwave See in context


I don't strongly disagree on this, and I agree they aren't interchangeable. I can understand that climate change is a result of global warming, and it is those changes that will affect us. But climate change can result from other factors. Your last link included this:

Climate change, on the other hand, can mean human-caused changes or natural ones, such as ice ages.

I think it is the human-caused changes that are of concern. And those are mainly from global warming caused by human activity - Anthropogenic (man-made) Global Warming ( AGW - sorry about my earlier errors with the initials). As many will say, the climate is always changing. But is it not the warming caused by human activity that is the focus of current concerns?

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Posted in: New Zealand's southern waters experiencing marine heatwave See in context

That's why the scientists, who study this stuff, switched from using the term global warming to climate change.

That's not my understanding. We used to hear the term Anthropogenic Global Warming (APG) from scientists. But some would doubt the "warming" bit if their local temperatures got colder, and so I think it was the not-so-scientific who introduced the term Climate Change.

The climate is always changing. But the man-made contribution is what is of concern. I prefer the term global warming to climate change, but I think APG is better still.

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Posted in: Global carbon dioxide removal totals 2 billion tons per year: report See in context

If anything, we need more CO2 in the atmosphere: we are now at historic lows.

Historic highs or historic lows? I guess it depends on the timescale you use. Much lower than 50 million years ago - can you remember those times? But at the highest point over the last million years or so, a period during which modern humans emerged.

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Posted in: 5 types of threat – how those who want to divide us use language to stoke violence See in context

Did anyone else notice that 'the bad people' in the article are exclusively enemies of political left?

I think some of us non-Americans will be wondering what you mean by "political left".

Let's take the imposition of the now ubiquitous word 'gender'. When I was a kid it was used for Latin, French and German, etc. nouns. Now they've decided it applies to humans too. 

I guess we're from different countries. When I was a kid, some forms used "sex" and others used "gender". I think there became a preference for "gender" when a number of boys would write "Yes please" against the sex question.

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Posted in: Police say 13-year-old girl has admitted killing mother See in context

*In Scotland it is 8 yrs.*

I think it's 12.

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Posted in: Nuclear reactor experiment rules out one dark matter hope See in context

BUT, here is the important question: At what point do scientists admit defeat and allow the evidence to disprove the Standard Model? 

Probably when someone comes up with an alternative theory (hypothesis) that is supported by all observations of the physical universe. I'm not a physicist, so my knowledge is limited. But my understanding is that the dark matter hypothesis would explain what we observe. Other hypotheses do not fully explain all observations. (But correct me if I'm wrong on that one.)

Just as we cannot prove that God does not exist, neither can we ever prove that dark matter does not exist. So believers will probably always exist.

I don't think it's quite the same thing. We can drop the idea of dark matter if someone comes up with an alternative explanation that can be supported by evidence. Or we can stick to it if someone is able to detect the bloody stuff. Meanwhile, we have to accept our ignorance. Agnosticism rather than atheism.

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Posted in: Nuclear reactor experiment rules out one dark matter hope See in context

It has become accepted and unchallengeable doctrine while vast sums are spent looking for it. Meanwhile any alternative theory is disallowed from publication

That's not my understanding. I think it's still seen as a head scratcher. There are alternative theories. I understand the most common suggest a modification of general relativity theory (see link below). But while they can explain some physical observations, they can't explain all of them.

(I've used the word "theories", but I think "hypotheses" is probably more accurate - both for dark matter and the alternatives.)

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Posted in: Trial ends for defendant in Tokyo subway station acid attack See in context

Plus, even if he gets the full six years, it'll be suspended for eight.

I don't think so. My understanding is that only sentences of up to three years can be suspended.

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Posted in: Nuclear reactor experiment rules out one dark matter hope See in context

The theory of dark matter is a fudge to explain the evidence that doesn’t agree with the standard model. Very unscientific approach

Proposing a theory to explain something that is not understood seems a very scientific approach.

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Posted in: Which country's leader do you currently respect the most? See in context

Probably the ones I have never heard of - i.e. those doing least harm. Denmark, Chile, Papua New Guinea, Cameroon.

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Posted in: When they hear that Japan does have the death penalty, British people are very shocked because they think that Japan is a democratic, harmonious, sort of sympathetic and sophisticated society. And the death penalty sits very badly with that image. See in context

Most British people, including me, want the death penalty back.

Not true.

Below is from Wikipedia:

In April 2021 a poll found that 54% of Britons said they would support reinstating the death penalty for those convicted of terrorism in the UK. About a quarter (23%) of respondents said they would be opposed.

It seems public attitudes change, often as a consequence of a recent event - for example, the Ian Huntly case and the murder of two 10-year-old girls in 2002. It understandably received a lot of attention and provoked anger. Yet around the same time there was a murder of a teenage prostitute in Scotland, and it received very little attention. And then there were the IRA bombings (the Birmingham Six and the Guildford 4) which raised demands for the return of capital punishment. But later all the convictions were quashed.

We should be careful capital punishment is not used in response to public anger. Otherwise, it might become like the witch burning of the past.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Posted in: New guidance: Use drugs, surgery early for obesity in kids See in context

the "120" refers to 120% of the value at the 95 percentile

Thanks, virusex. That makes more sense.

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Posted in: England rushes to discharge hospital patients to ease bed shortage crisis See in context

About 63% of the UK population are taxpayers. So the average UK taxpayer pays about £4500 per year towards health care - about £385 per month.

That doesn't really make sense as there are sources of tax other than income tax. Nevertheless, I'm still wondering how you work out that above average earners pay 750€ per month. Are you only referring to way-above-average earners?

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