wipeout comments

Posted in: Trump attends anti-abortion rally See in context

We do accept them, but it seems that liberals don’t accept the conservative point of view, so where’s the tolerance?


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Posted in: Trump attends anti-abortion rally See in context

I applaud President Trump for speaking up in defense of the right to life of unborn babies -- who are undeniably, as confirmed by science, human beings.

If you could just point us to the science that clearly defines the terms "human being" and "unborn baby", then you might have taken the first step towards providing evidence of its supposed undeniability. "Human being" isn't a scientific designation, and when it is used in scientific or academic contexts without definition (though the noun "human" is far more likely), it is likely to be in the wholly uncontroversial and not-up-for-discussion context of people who have been born: in other words, outside and irrelevant to the realm of your moral/religious/ethical quibbles.

To show that science confirms a woman who is, say, two weeks overdue is carrying an "unborn baby" is a task that will be beyond you. Scientific methods can show whether she is pregnant or not, and the actual lines of pregnancy and non-pregnancy are pretty clearly defined. So are fetus and embryo. I'm calling crap on the claim that science applies the term unborn baby to any pregnancy that shows up on a pee stick.

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

Posted in: Japan confirms 2nd new coronavirus infection See in context

Why is China building a hospital just to treat these patients?

It takes months to build one.

It is scheduled to be completed on Feb. 2nd, which is little more than a week away.


Just for you, here you go: On June 19, 2015, the UK government-funded Pirbright Institute filed an application for a patent for the live coronavirus, which was approved on Nov 20, 2018.

No, the British did not develop a vaccine in 2015 for a then-unknown disease which would first be observed on the other side of the world in 2019.

The best they can do is develop a coronavirus vaccine tailored to a specific already-known coronavirus illness and, when a new coronavirus disease emerges, develop a new vaccine as quickly as possible based on what they already know and based on its similarities, such as they are, to other diseases such as SARS or MERS.

Coronaviruses were already known (since the 1960s) to be a class of virus. SARS and MERS are already known (since 2003 and 2012, respectively), and known not to be the same as each other. And the Wuhan coronavirus is another thing again.

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Posted in: China building a hospital to treat virus; expands lockdowns to 25 mil people See in context

SCMP link:


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Posted in: China building a hospital to treat virus; expands lockdowns to 25 mil people See in context

Since they’re pretty much counting on everyone in the cities been sick, wouldn’t it be easier, quicker and cheaper to simply use the existing facilities?

It's the middle of flu season, which is already a busy time for hospitals. Existing facilities don't have limitless capacity, and can't necessarily cope with large numbers of patients when an outbreak of some new illness occurs.

For example, this SCMP story from HK, where Wuhan disease is not by any means out of control for now, reports that the occupancy rate for hospital beds is already currently at 105 percent. Hospitals don't just drop everything to attend to a new epidemic, they already have heavy schedules and more patients than they need, especially once influenza season takes hold.

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Posted in: French investigators to move ahead with Ghosn prosecution over palace party See in context

Sellout Macron, never helped Ghosn when he was imprisoned and now sucking up to Japan to win points.

You've overlooked the words "prosecutors" and "judges" in this story, and for some reason inserted Macron into it.

Macron is the president of France; his powers do not extend to having people prosecuted at his pleasure. If you find that possibility baffling, you'll have to read up on the concept of an independent judiciary. Prosecutors do not run around doing the president's bidding.

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Posted in: Abe calls for vigilance, steps against spread of new coronavirus See in context

I understand the Corona virus is basically just the common cold. So what is all this brouhaha about?

The potential to be something like SARS - though for now, it looks like it probably isn't - which was caused by a coronavirus, had nothing to do with the common cold, was dangerously infectious, and had a high mortality rate.

SARS was contained, eventually, but some of the infected were so-called super spreaders who passed a particularly virulent form along to multiple people, hence the high death rate in some clusters, and the spread of the disease from a single patient to multiple countries.

To get the epidemic under control it took some strict quarantine procedures, including the evacuation of the (approx. 10,000) residents of an entire Hong Kong housing estate to an isolated area for two weeks, and treatment with drugs that have had long-term debilitating effects for some patients (bone and lung problems, among other things). The epidemic also infected and killed health workers, including the Italian WHO physician who - no thanks to China - first got the news out to the world that what he saw in Hanoi had to be a new and dangerous disease.

It doesn't take much to put health services under severe strain, and a new disease can do it easily. That's what happened in Hong Kong and other locations where SARS was spreading for a couple of months: the combination of many very ill patients, physicians and nurses falling ill or suspected of showing symptoms, the sudden need for large quantities of disposable protective gear, and the implementation of rigorous anti-infection measures, can bring things to crisis point very fast.

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Posted in: Wrong-side drivers near air base used by U.S. worry UK police See in context

On what side do the drive inside the base?

If their behaviour on British roads is any indication, they drive on both sides.

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Posted in: Foreign tourists spend record ¥4.8 tril in Japan in 2019 See in context

Just don't pretend people out there looking at a few temples or wandering around Harajuku are spending the same amount of money as skiers. They are not.

As I said, it depends what those sightseers do. Temples often charge entrance fees - 1000 yen isn't unusual for the famous ones - as do museums, and taking trains and buses also costs money. Urban sightseers are more likely to be passing by souvenir shops, going to shopping areas, or visiting department stores. It adds up.

Skiers are usually in remote areas out of the cities where there is not much (sometimes nothing) in the way of shopping. Certainly very little upscale shopping of the sort popular with some Asian tourists in Japan. Instead, the main cost after accommodation and food is lift passes. Those are a more or less fixed amount per day. While I said 8000, that's actually on the high side, because it's for an all-areas pass including night skiing. 6000 is more realistic at many resorts in Japan, and that's also about the cost of a day ticket at the individual resorts at Niseko. With a little effort it can be done for less, as there are often ways to get discounts on tickets.

Compared to just about any other activity people do over a whole day in Japan, 6000 yen is extremely reasonable. Leaving out accommodation costs, which all tourists have to deal with, a lift pass isn't the whole daily cost for skiers, but it's the main one. It's not much more than it would cost to go to a museum, a temple, and take a couple of buses and trains in a city like Tokyo or Kyoto - a very light sightseeing schedule that can easily run to 3000 yen or more.

Personally I think the average Australian ski/snowboard tourist spends less on the days that they are out on the mountain than a tourist from China or Taiwan spends in Kyoto or Tokyo. They tend to be younger, less willing to fling money around, and not greatly interested in shopping. It's quite easy to hold skiing costs down; it's rather less easy for people whose mission when visiting to Japan is buying up brand-name crap in Shinjuku or Ginza to do it on the cheap.

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Posted in: Foreign tourists spend record ¥4.8 tril in Japan in 2019 See in context

One day of skiing is way more expensive than one day of sightseeing.

That depends very much what kind of sightseeing you do.

Skiers travelling internationally typically buy multi-day passes. Niseko charges 8,000 yen for a one day pass that gives access to lifts and gondolas for the whole mountain (consisting of three resorts), and for multi-day passes, it comes down to around 7000 yen. That's a normal price to ski in Japan.

People who ski and snowboard all day are not spending money on transport, shopping, or entrance fees. Costs during the day are usually just lunch and the occasional coffee or drink break. Food at ski resorts is generally basic and inexpensive.

Obviously it's possible to run up extra costs on equipment rental, lessons, and evening entertainment. Serious skiers/snowboarders (a category I would put most Australians in, from what I've seen) are more likely to have their own equipment and skiwear. What they spend on howling it up in the evenings is open-ended, but that goes for all tourists coming to Japan, skier or not. The same goes for accommodation.

It's actually surprising that you identify Australians as likely to be bigger spenders just based on fact that they come here to ski. When people get into skiing/snowboarding, they often try to hold down the cost because their focus is on spending as much time out on the mountain as possible. They are also often young and don't have limitless funds. The basic cost of a day on the slopes is definitely not "way more" expensive than a day sightseeing. From my experience, if you have your own gear, it can be cheaper.

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Posted in: Suicides in Japan hit record low in 2019; down for 10th year in row See in context

Last year Japan still had the world's highest youth suicide rate.

No it didn't.

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Posted in: Patient in Japan confirmed as having new virus from China See in context


Or just stay healthy and stop relying on external factors to keep you safe.

Why do you imagine it's good advice to recommend to other people that they don't get vaccinated - whether you apply that advice to influenza or any other infectious disease? There is no scientific or statistical basis for suggesting that vaccination increases infection rates, or makes a person more likely to catch the disease.

Your anecdotal observation isn't data, it doesn't scale to community or population level, and even as an anecdote, it's untrustworthy - for those of us with memories, it's the same story you've been trotting out for years, and also a favourite of vaccine deniers.

Good sanitation and good hygiene are already recommended by all health organizations. They reduce the chance of infection. But they are not a replacement for vaccination where a vaccine is available. That is true even with less effective vaccines like influenza, which reduce infection rates both by reducing each vaccinated person's chances of being infected, and, if that person remains disease-free, by them not infecting others. It is undeniable that you will get better results if 90% of people are vaccinated against influenza than if only 10% are, and that is the case even in the years when the vaccine is measured as having lowest efficacy.

Your alternative to that is that we should all just take our chances. In effect, you're advocating that every person you or your family comes into contact with should not be vaccinated against influenza: doctors, teachers, transport workers, food workers, shop staff...people who every day are in close contact with a lot of other people, some of them healthy, some sick, some asymptomatic but carrying (and shedding) disease - and then these by-your-wish unvaccinated people will be dealing face to face with you. Or your wife, or your children. It's unclear to me why you think it's better that such a person would be unvaccinated instead of vaccinated - unless you're actually unaware what influenza is, and what it can do to you.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: Ghosn tells Japanese media he has plenty of documents to prove innocence See in context

Even if we give Carlos the benefit of the doubt that this money is not a kickback from the millions out of the CEO reserve that Nissan paid to Middle-eastern dealers in sales and marketing incentives, Ghosn still has a fiduciary duty to fully disclose and account for any external dealings with Nissan clients.

I wonder if it's dawned on you that "Carlos" is no longer CEO of anything, is on the lam, and has shrugged off any fiduciary duty he may have had to the Japanese corporation he headed for 17 years by jumping bail and leaving Japan. He had a duty to honour his bail conditions, having requested and been granted bail; to allow his lawyers in Japan to do the job he had engaged them for instead of wrong-footing them; and to pay them in full for their work. He may already have or may yet honour the final item in that list, though I certainly wouldn't bet on it; he has certainly violated the other two.

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Posted in: Taiwan's top military official among 8 dead as helicopter makes forced landin See in context

Given China’s tendency to interfere in others affairs (while going puce in the face and squealing if anyone even so much as mildly disagrees with anything they do) it does make you wonder?

In Taiwan, which has an exceedingly spotty record for aviation safety, the reality tends to be more mundane. Crudely put, a lot of bad piloting and bad maintenance. Two recent incidents were found to be a result of pilot error: the 2015 TransAsia crash into the Keelung river in Taipei (engine malfunction followed by incorrect shutdown of the remaining functioning engine), and the Black Hawk crash in 2018. Pilot error is also implicated in almost all the major crashes of the last 30 years, and maintenance issues originating in Taiwan account for most of the rest. There are also a number of hair raising incidents that by good fortune rather than pilot skill did not end in disaster. Here are two.



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Posted in: Ghosn's escape prompts talk of more curbs in Japan's strict justice system See in context

I do not hear Japanese people complain about their Justice Systems while a lot of critical opinions by foreigners here. Why?

Complacency, aided by a supine media and citizens who have learned (and been taught) from childhood not to question the infallibility of authority: the government, the courts, the police, the prison system. Many Japanese are completely unaware of what detention in Japan involves. Many also prefer to assume that it happens only to criminals, who deserve whatever happens to them.

Innocent Japanese do get arrested here, and that's about the point where they and their families develop social awareness. While people like you continue not knowing and not wanting to know.

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Posted in: Ghosn's lawyer says he is stunned his client left country See in context

Guys you know it's all masquerade. They let him "run away" because actually they didn't have any proof of his wrongdoings.

Legally, if Ghosn was still on bail, there is no question that he ran away. Bail is requested by the accused and any conditions must be agreed to by the accused before bail is granted and release from custody is permitted. Bail is frequently opposed by prosecutors on the grounds - whether justified or not - that the accused is a flight risk. With money, connections, multiple nationalities, and access to private aircraft, Ghosn was always a flight risk.

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Posted in: Swapping eggs, white bread for oatmeal linked to lower stroke risk See in context

Oatmeal is the ingredient, porridge is the dish.

In some regions. In others - surely you know this - oatmeal is correct, as it is in the context of this article. And porridge is not by definition made from with oats, it's a general word like soup or stew.

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Posted in: Train stations, airports crowded as New Year holiday exodus begins See in context

What do Americans or the westerners do?

It's not one place with one shoal of fish, mate.

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Posted in: U.S. gov't heads to court to seize private land for Trump's border wall in Texas See in context

Seize all the property of any business hiring or paying anyone not approved by the govt to work in the USA.

I um...you haven't thought about that one very carefully, have you?

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Posted in: UK charges U.S. diplomat's wife over teen's death in crash See in context

So, if Anne Sacoolas shot a pregnant woman in broad daylight in front of a crowd and there were pictures and videos of her with the gun in her hand, she would have diplomatic immunity?

Immunity from being charged with a crime already committed. You're beginning to grasp the concept of what the word "immunity" means in the phrase "diplomatic immunity". But that immunity does not mean a person in the situation you describe wouldn't be taken into custody. They would also risk being shot on the spot if they were considered a danger to others.

They should have accepted that offer.

More of an ambush. They were not given fair warning that the "offer" was going to be made. It's actually commendable that (probably based on sound advice from their lawyer) they didn't allow themselves to be galloped into what could well have turned into a cheap and characteristically revolting Donald Trump publicity stunt. They'd likely have regretted it for a long time to come, and sooner rather than later, have felt like they'd just sold out their own son.

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Posted in: Japan demands swift release of fishermen detained by Russia See in context

By the way I heard before, Americans do not eat octopus. They think they are "monsters" of the sea.

What else don't you know?

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Posted in: North Korea conducts 'very important test': KCNA See in context

Trump is going to come down on you like ton of bricks if you keep up this testing. 

More like a ton of sweaty flab.

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Posted in: Hong Kong democracy protesters aim for massive turnout at rare sanctioned march See in context

So the danger is if there's violence it'll invite a crushing response from Xi, and if it's peaceful the protesters will just be ignored. Poor people of Hong Kong.

Well yes, you were a little slow to wake up to Hong Kong reality post-1997, but that's how it is.

In reality it's actually rather worse, because Hong Kong people are not being granted the status quo. Instead they are seeing their freedoms actively eroded, and with the extradition bill, it was finally and unavoidably clear that the Hong Kong government is uninterested in protecting their rights of the citizens or upholding the Basic Law. And it expects the people to go along with it, all the while being told that they're not to be trusted with full democratic rights. Which is an insult to any educated population.

Apparently the population has risen against that insult.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: Early cholesterol treatment lowers heart disease risk: study See in context

I never said physicians say people bring it on themselves. I said it.

Yes, and I explained why physicians aren't in a position to share your attitude. When people become sick, it isn't much use telling them they shouldn't have done whatever it was they did, or telling them they don't deserve treatment because they haven't been virtuous enough. Physicians treat sickness; dishing out homilies is not a recognized part of their duties. Some still do it of course, but it's basically a free extra, like smiling.

So to drag this back to what was covered in the article, it was reporting a study published in the Lancet, a journal that leans heavily towards physicians as its target readership, and it was reporting a study that was headed by a physician, and the subject of the study was the value of a particular medication in the context of particular treatments and outcomes. There is no part of this article in which physicians aren't relevant to what was reported, and the reported study was about treatment of patients with high cholesterol, not exploring "how could they avoid having high cholesterol in the first place?".

I take it that your reply to me is to explain that your original comments had no relevance at all to the study, and were never even intended to. Is that about the size of it?

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Posted in: Johnson ahead but polls suggest majority might be tough See in context

A Brexit deal is not Brexit. No deal / clean break Brexit is Brexit.

An entirely spurious claim. Not one national newspaper or broadcaster uses the word according to your cooked-up definition. It always was, and continues to be, used to refer to Britain leaving the EU. Nothing more, nothing less, and no special conditions applied.

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Posted in: Early cholesterol treatment lowers heart disease risk: study See in context

People (and pharmaceutical companies) are always thinking of how to cure problems, but not thinking of how to prevent them in the first place. 

Untrue. Eat healthily and don't smoke: you just gave the most medically uncontroversial advice possible. It's hardly something that physicians neglect to suggest their patients, and as basic advice it was around before you or I were born. But they also have to diagnose and treat, and a physician saying that people "bring it on themselves" doesn't move diagnosis and treatment forward in any way at all. They even have to treat people who bring it on themselves - which applies to a very high proportion of their patients: ask any doctor who has treated someone who was injured in an "accident" or while exercising or playing sports.

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Posted in: Johnson ahead but polls suggest majority might be tough See in context

That's not Brexit.

Brexit is simply the UK (including Northern Ireland) leaving the EU. It's a neutral term and doesn't need redefining by a Trump cultist.

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Posted in: Elon Musk cleared of defamation over 'pedo guy' tweet See in context

My faith in humanity has been restored.

Great. I'd hate to think that Musk had suffered doubts over his faith in humanity because his right to call someone a "child rapist" was infringed.

What an ordeal it must have been for the persecuted billionaire.

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Posted in: Japan to require drone registration to find owners following accidents See in context

I would personally like to thank all the idiots who did stupid things with their drones and ruined it for the rest of us.

Right. Who could ever have imagined that a device available to all, and that can be flown over roads, railways, powerlines, as well as residential, commercial and industrial property would be misused or might cause accidents, and would require careful regulation?

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Posted in: Japan had over 8,000 deaths related to drug-resistant bacteria in 2017 See in context

Many hospitals overseas have antibiotic policies

Useful to know. Many anything overseas have many anything.

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