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The Engineer
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The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/09/2011 11:41 PM

Kepler's Mission

The centuries-old quest for other worlds like our Earth has been rejuvenated by the intense excitement and popular interest surrounding the discovery of hundreds of planets orbiting other stars.

There is now clear evidence for substantial numbers of three types of exoplanets; gas giants, hot-super-Earths in short period orbits, and ice giants. The following websites are tracking the day-by-day increase in new discoveries and are providing information on the characteristics of the planets as well as those of the stars they orbit.

Kepler Mission Scientific Objective:

The scientific objective of the Kepler Mission is to explore the structure and diversity of planetary systems. This is achieved by surveying a large sample of stars to:

  1. Determine the abundance of terrestrial and larger planets in or near the habitable zone of a wide variety of stars;
  2. Determine the distribution of sizes and shapes of the orbits of these planets;
  3. Estimate how many planets there are in multiple-star systems;
  4. Determine the variety of orbit sizes and planet reflectivities, sizes, masses and densities of short-period giant planets;
  5. Identify additional members of each discovered planetary system using other techniques; and
  6. Determine the properties of those stars that harbor planetary systems.

The Kepler Mission also supports the objectives of future NASA Origins theme missions Space Interferometry Mission (SIM) and Terrestrial Planet Finder (TPF),

  • By identifying the common stellar characteristics of host stars for future planet searches,
  • By defining the volume of space needed for the search and
  • By allowing SIM to target systems already known to have terrestrial planets.

More information found here

The Problem

From all accounts, NASA's Kepler spacecraft has been an unabashed success since its launch 2½ years ago. In February, mission scientists announced that they'd found an astounding 1,235 candidate planets in just the first four months' observations. This cache brims with multiple-planet systems: 115 doubles, 45 triples, and 10 with at least four.

Moreover, beyond its planet-hunting prowess, Kepler has returned paradigm-changing data on the nature of stars themselves, heralding what one researcher calls a "golden age for stellar physics." An estimated 500 astronomers are poring through the spacecraft's ultraprecise light curves, churning out roughly one new research paper per week on everything from a detailed census of stellar sizes and masses to using stars' subtle, rhythmic pulsations to probe their interiors.

But project managers have become quietly concerned that Kepler's top priority - finding true analogs of Earth circling Sunlike stars in temperate, life-friendly orbits - can't be achieved by the time the spacecraft completes its planned 3½-year-long mission just 16 months from now.

It soon became apparent that the problem lay with the targeted stars themselves. Kepler scientists had assumed that stars like the Sun would behave, well, just as the Sun does. Up-and-down churning of gas in the solar photosphere causes the Sun's brightness to vary by about 10 parts per million (10 ppm) over time scales of a few hours.
But brightness fluctuations from the stars being watched by Kepler are greater than that - averaging about 20 ppm for 12th-magnitude dwarfs. This added noise makes their light curves messier and identifying transits by small bodies all the more difficult. "They're much more variable than the Sun," Borucki admits. "It was a big surprise to us."

Where the Antiscience comes in

There is a way around this unexpected setback: the longer Kepler can stare, the better its odds of identifying small worlds. According to a comprehensive analysis just concluded by Gilliland and 16 colleagues, the spacecraft would need to amass at least 7 or 8 years of observations - double the planned mission length - to identify all the Earths passing in front of solar-type stars in the spacecraft's field of view.

Ordinarily, getting NASA managers to extend Kepler operations for a few more years would be nearly automatic. After all, even though the total mission cost is roughly $600 million, it would take no more than $17 million annually to keep it going. The spacecraft is healthy, with enough consumables aboard to last through most of this decade.

But these are turbulent times for the space agency. Substantial cost and schedule overruns by the James Webb Space Telescope threaten to gobble up an ever-greater fraction of NASA's space-science budget. Worse, within the past month Congressional budgeteers have proposed not only to cancel JWST outright but to slash more than $1.9 billion from the Obama administration's NASA budget for fiscal year 2012.

More information here

My Conclusion

Look, I know these Antiscience posts annoy a lot of people. I don't particularly enjoy ostracizing myself by continually bringing up this unpopular (and aggressively denied) subject. I do it because I love science and I feel obligated to speak about what I'm seeing.

What I'm seeing is that we are aggressively destroying science in this country and the silence is deafening. The cuts to NASA are already having terrible consequences and it's only going to get worse.

I'm supposed to believe that there isn't a prevalent Antiscience undercurrent among mainstream America? Look at what this country is doing. You can't just blame fiscal conservatism. The silence of the majority as science is systematically destroyed is doing far more damage. The majority, through their "neutralness" or worse "superficial support" on this issue is enabling this destruction. It's time people other than myself say it. Or are we going to just going to keep pretending everything is ok? Can't we at least admit the vast majority of people in this country simply don't care that this is happening?

We are all the Antiscience and it's weakening our country. We (people supposedly in support of science) need to stop regurgitating talking points and look at this problem more deeply. If we keep pursuing (as scientists) the same old tired approach of "dumbing down science" or "making science cool", in other words chasing rather than leading, then the day will come not to long from now when Scientists are explaining to University Boards why physics is a necessary subject in Universities.

Ooops, I forgot, that day has already come

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Marcus Aurelius once said "A man's worth is no greater than his ambitions.".

The same could be said for a country's worth. If we as a country don't start more aggressively fostering ambitions beyond our immediate needs, we will cease to be great.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

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Guru
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#1

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/10/2011 12:25 AM

Some of us do hear you.

But what can be done about "a lack of leadership and cooperation for exoplanet missions within NASA and the larger astrophysics community."?

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#4
In reply to #1

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/10/2011 9:44 AM

What needs to be done?

The leaders of the current Scientific Associations such as the American Physical Society, American Chemical Society, etc. all represent the current apologist approach in Science. I'm advocating a far more aggressive approach (Described in Post #3) which means they all need to be replaced in their leadership positions, or a new organization of Scientists needs to be organized with the goal of defending science.

Before we can hope to change the public perception of science, we need to remember what we are and regain our pride and self-respect as a group. We are those who invented civilization and have advanced mankind's understanding to it's present state. We are the latest in a long line and proud tradition of humanists. If we had listened to every moderate that came along in history and told us to be "reasonable", we'd still be sharpening sticks in our cave for the hunt. It is our unreasonableness that is the very heart of our being scientists. We are not satisfied with things as they are, but strive for what should be.

We need to reembrace this unreasonableness (reasonably)

I believe, in this existential haze of anti-abstraction we've lost our identity as a group. We've become self-loathing because what we are is in opposition to those virtues our age promotes (being grounded, living in the now, practicality). Until we confront this problem within, we can't hope to turn the tide without.

In that link you provided

In that link you see Scientists fighting with each other over the scraps like dogs. Is this what we've been reduced to? His anger was directed at his fellow scientists for not promoting a cheaper alternative? Is that really the issue here? We need to stop fighting each other (scientists) for ever dwindling funding and turn our ire towards those taking that funding away.

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#17
In reply to #4

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/11/2011 10:03 AM

In that link you see Scientists fighting with each other over the scraps like dogs. Is this what we've been reduced to? His anger was directed at his fellow scientists for not promoting a cheaper alternative? Is that really the issue here? We need to stop fighting each other (scientists) for ever dwindling funding and turn our ire towards those taking that funding away.


You're getting close
a successful lobbying effort always has a unity of message.
what keeps the scientific community from having a unity of message?


we need a good sound byte

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#2

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/10/2011 12:46 AM

Roger, you wrote:"Look, I know these Antiscience posts annoy a lot of people. I don't particularly enjoy ostracizing myself by continually bringing up this unpopular (and aggressively denied) subject"

I think you are misjudging the reaction as "aggressively denied"

There are cuts across the board and 'science' can not expect exemption. This is pragmatic, not emotive, reality. If there is something annoying, it is your unwillingness to talk of affirmative action, or enter into 'solution pathway' discussions.

E.g. When "How can 'scientists promote the importance/value' of such knowledge", which leads directly to "Pro-science" funding, you opt out and then refuse to engage those who ask, or tend to repeat the unanswered "well what would you have us do?" question.

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#3
In reply to #2

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/10/2011 9:22 AM

Let me address you're post in several points, out of order in how you brought them up:

You Wrote:
"There are cuts across the board and 'science' can not expect exemption."

Your statement that there are cuts across the board just isn't true. It's not even being proposed. I'm not sure where you are are getting this idea that there are cuts across the board.

You Wrote:"you opt out and then refuse to engage those who ask, or tend to repeat the unanswered "well what would you have us do?" question."

I think you are confusing not liking my answer with my not answering, I have answered this before many times, but I have no problem answering yet again in even more detail.

What we (Scientists) need to do is immediately is take a hard look at ourselves (our community), understand how the Antiscience is effecting us internally and externally and reevaluate our policies and approach. While we do this, we should utterly ignore demands that we "dumb it down" or "sell science" and immediately take a hard line and unified approach to scientific opposition.

There should be a generalized Scientific Union that Scientists can join if they wish. This union would lobby aggressively and take proactive steps to fight both government and corporate abuse of science. We need to stop the apologetic bowing and scraping nauseatingly milquetoast approach we've taken the last 30 years which has been consistently getting our asses kicked.

We need to start thinking of ourselves not as "nerds and geeks" but rather "idealists and humanists" (respect starts with self-respect). We need to come down swiftly and hard against pseudoscience, within and without (Scientists are very capable of pseudoscience). We should publicly ridicule and mock it. Actively campaign against it. Censure and boycott those that promote it. Our current policy of ignoring it or "educating the public" has been horribly ineffective. The more drastic actions described are necessary.

In other words, we should as scientists aggressively combat the derision that has grown regarding Science within and without. We must change the way we view ourselves and the world views us. Most of all, we've got to stop apologizing for caring. We need to stop pretending that our current passive apologist approach is anything other than the fearful recourse of a group that has forgotten how to lead.

You Wrote:"I think you are misjudging the reaction as "aggressively denied""

I don't think you understand that these Antiscience posts are not attacking those advocating the cuts (honestly, who cares about them?), but rather Scientists sitting idly by allowing these cuts to happen. It is those who "aggressively deny" that we scientists ourselves, in our meekness, are the problem. That somehow the current sideline approach is some sort of dignified "above the fray" approach instead of the cowardice it actually is. If we aren't willing to fight for what we believe, then we deserve to lose. Until Scientists realize that, it's going to get worse.

(I apologize for the long post, but I didn't want to be accused of being evasive or not providing a "solution pathway")

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#8
In reply to #3

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/10/2011 11:59 AM

"I think you are confusing not liking my answer with my not answering"

Strangely enough you go on to propose;"There should be a generalized Scientific Union that Scientists can join if they wish" which I do not recall being mentioned previously, as I would have quite liked the 'solution pathway' aspect.

So how are we setting this up?

What are the "proactive steps" to form this Association?

[I'm assuming the body of this and your following post to be the "Mission Statement"]

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#9
In reply to #8

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/10/2011 1:06 PM

You seem to be setting the rules as to what "taking action" means.

Writing a series of blog posts promoting a new way of thinking about an existing problem in Science = Not doing anything.

Setting up a Society = Doing somthing

Am I correct in that synopsis? I just want to be clear what is being said before I respond directly to your post.

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#12
In reply to #9

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/11/2011 3:07 AM

"Rules"

Interesting ploy. Reminds me of Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid

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#13
In reply to #12

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/11/2011 8:28 AM

"Interesting ploy"- Interesting ploy. Reminds me of Monty Python.

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#5

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/10/2011 9:55 AM

I'm supposed to believe that there isn't a prevalent Antiscience undercurrent among mainstream America?

If you replaced antiscience with apathy, I'd be on board......and it does suck.

Even so, you have made your point many times now. What about solutions?

I actually don't think many people are annoyed by the antiscience threads anymore..................................numbed would probably be a more appropriate term.

What I'm seeing is that we are aggressively destroying science in this country and the silence is deafening.

What, if anything, are you doing to combat this situation, besides writing antiscience threads on CR4?

Have you petitioned congress?

Have you worked to form a coalition of scientists to try to undo these cuts?

Anything?

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#6
In reply to #5

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/10/2011 10:15 AM

You Wrote:"Even so, you have made your point many times now. What about solutions?"

I believe I've provided a completely new way of thinking about what's going on (my whole Antiscience=Existentialism run amok). That itself is a solution. This is a new way of thinking about what has be a very old (30-40 years) intransigent problem. I am hopeful, with persistence, the theory may gain some acceptance (even if it's in some modified form). There is nothing more powerful than an idea. If people come around to my way of thinking on this subject, their actions will change (I believe for the positive). However, getting people to discard their old way of thinking about a problem and accepting a completely original way of looking at a problem is very difficult.

So when you ask "what are you doing"? My answer is "Trying to change the way Scientists think about this issue by writing post after post on the subject". People can try to dismiss my explanation or definition of the Antiscience as crazy (or unlikely), but I know the more I speak the harder it is to dismiss me. My arguments are well thought out. My logic is sound. My theory is, at the very least, plausible. The hardest part is convincing people of the necessity of it's adoption (why things have to change from the status quo).

You Wrote:
"numbed would probably be a more appropriate term"

I agree, but I will try to persist in spite of this numbness. I continue hold out the hope that someone other than myself will believe in my explanation of the Antiscience.

You Wrote:"Have you petitioned congress?"

I regularly send correspondence to my Senators and Congressman on Scientific Subjects. That has nothing to do with this. That is a fruitless romantic gesture I make, nothing more.

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#7
In reply to #6

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/10/2011 10:38 AM

I hope it works out for you.

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#10

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/10/2011 11:36 PM

Roger-

I think in your analysis you are generally ignoring a trend that can be seen developing within several disciplines. That is, as government money dries up, private money will step in (at least in those disciplines where the owners of the private capital have a personal interest). I am thinking in terms of the Gates Foundation, for example, pursuing medical solutions; the commercial "Race for Space" projects; one could probably find many more examples.

I am not suggesting this as an excuse for the current apathy, but perhaps a part of the solution. Your pet projects might not be getting the attention you think they deserve from the private sector, because no one is out selling the ideas and the cost/benefit expectations to those with capital to spend. There are many, many foundations out there looking for viable places to park their money.

Forget government. Government is going to be broke for a long, long time. To save, for example, the James Webb, rather than spending a whole lot of money lobbying Congress, why not use some of the funds to promote the project with the likes of Gates or Buffet or Richard Branson (who has already proven a willingness to invest in space projects), or any number of other charitable foundations that might be inclined to supporting science with questionable monetary returns (there used to be commercial organizations, like 3M, Lockheed, and Bell Labs that would invest in science for the sake of science, quite often very profitably, but the current focus on next quarter's returns tends to discourage that sort of investment).

I am personally pursuing this course (I know of a couple of others here on CR4 doing the same- there are probably many more that I don't know about). For example, I have a dream of generating electricity from tidal flow locally- something that has been under development for many, many years (actually, I am more motivated by the desire to save trees than to produce cheap electricity, but that's another story). The cost of a demonstration plant is, of course, way beyond my means, and there are probably government entities that might be willing to pursue this, if they weren't so bent on building sky scrapers and a new canal. So, everyone I know who might even remotely be interested and who has the resources to participate, must sit through my presentation, and is undated with volumes of e-mails and telephone calls...

Grubbing for money would ideally be "beneath" the dedicated scientist, but if you believe in what you are pursuing, you ought to be chasing the resources where they live, not where they are being wasted on questionable social projects...

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#11
In reply to #10

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/11/2011 12:24 AM

Referring these major scientific initiatives endorsed by major scientific associations and top scientists across the world as "Roger's pet projects" is a complete mischaracterization and counterproductive to this discussion. These are things that the scientific community agrees will greatly improve our knowledge of the world around us.

You Wrote:"That is, as government money dries up, private money will step in (at least in those disciplines where the owners of the private capital have a personal interest)."

That sounds great. Do you have any statistical resources you'd like to point to that actually shows that, or should I just take your word for it? I ask because the statistics I've seen indicated a decline in Scientific expenditures in both the government and private industry as a percentage of GDP.

You Wrote:"because no one is out selling the ideas and the cost/benefit expectations to those with capital to spend."

We don't do Science because it's profitable, we do it to advance humanity. If we aren't striving for something like science, why are we even bothering? If all we live for is existence and profit, than how are we any different than any other animal?

No, the answer isn't to "sell science", the answer is to remind people what it means to be human.

"All men by nature desire knowledge"-Aristotle

"Taken over the centuries, scientific ideas have exerted a force on our civilization fully as great as the more tangible practical applications of scientific research." -I. Bernard Cohen

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#14

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/11/2011 8:52 AM

I'm trying to think of how to say this without starting a political debate here. We've overspent as a country. We can't keep up with our current spending.

I was actually disappointed to see Washington fight for 3 months to cut $30 billion (I think that number's right). From what I heard, you would see spending cuts proposed and then get shot down because someone didn't want their constituent's budgets cut. Was either side standing up for NASA?

Maybe we need more scientists and engineers in Washington and fewer lawyers.

**As a side note, I've been deeply offended for years to see my engineering/science TV channels (like History Channel and Discovery) turned into reality show telelvision. It used to be so much fun to watch some shows that would explain the inner workings of the universe in between college courses.**

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#15
In reply to #14

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/11/2011 9:09 AM

You Wrote:"We've overspent as a country. We can't keep up with our current spending."

In your opinion (which is fine, I'm just saying don't mistake it for a fact). I my opinion, we have cut taxes too much with the Bush tax cuts and that as long as we insist on keeping them at this level we are going to have a debt problem. And let's be real, if our spending is too high in this country, it isn't because we're spending too much on science.

Here's the problem as I see it. There exists a theory that, if you keep taxes low, businesses keep more of their profits and then turn around and spend that money thus growing the economy. The growing economy will then produce higher tax revenue (without the need to raise the tax rate). It's a wonderful fairy tale that tells us we can have our cake and eat it too. The problem? The businesses aren't spending the money. They are sitting on it.

http://post.jagran.com/us-wallows-in-debt-but-its-firms-hoard-usd-2-trillion-in-cash-1312790838

The tax rates are simply too low if corporations refuse to grow the economy. We've got to raise taxes. It's that simple. And you know what, we'll all survive if we raise taxes back to pre-Bush levels. Remember, we had a surplus in the late 1990s, and spending was actually higher then (as a percentage of GDP).

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#16
In reply to #15

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/11/2011 9:37 AM

I agree with you that science shouldn't be cut. But it's so easy to cut science spending when so few people are directly affected by it. For most people, cutting science will have long term impacts but who cares about 3 years from now (sarcastic button)?

You're right, I do think we shouldn't raise taxes. We require the highest levels of environmental and safety protection in our businesses. While I'm not opposed to protecting our environment and workers, other countries don't care. How can we expect businesses to make products here when they can do it cheaper overseas? Cutting taxes is a way to offset our high operational costs.

And we do have a spending problem. Any time we borrow money to spend more, we have a spending problem. Now, if we were to raise taxes and then raise spending to accompany that, I think it would be a little more responsible. But there's a limit to raising taxes (100% taxed).

My last point (then I'll let you swing back), is that I think it's funny how both sides of Washington, liberal and conservative, base their facts on the economy on these 10 years swings that we have. Every 10 years, our country swings between liberal and conservative and each side says that it's their party that's responsible for the good economy. I remember an economics course I took in college where my professor said that we don't really have enough data to say that high taxes or low taxes are better for the economy. He laughed at most of the politicians.

Alright I'm out. I'm really hoping you don't say anything that I strongly disagree with so this can be my last comment lol.

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#19
In reply to #16

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/11/2011 10:16 AM

You Wrote:"Any time we borrow money to spend more, we have a spending problem."

Actually no. Forgive this ridiculous example to prove that what you said is wrong. If a person with no income borrows $5 to eat, then that person does not have a spending problem, they have a revenue problem.

You Wrote:"Now, if we were to raise taxes and then raise spending to accompany that, I think it would be a little more responsible."

I agree with that. Also, I think we can decouple business tax rates with individual tax rates and create a tiered tax system (with higher ranges) for business that would essentially help small businesses by lowering their effective tax rate.

You wrote:"...base their facts on the economy on these 10 years swings"

If I'm to be completely honest, it isn't the debt that I'm worried about. It's wealth inequality. I know of too many great dynasties and empires that fell due to wealth inequality. Our overly flat tax code is creating a wealth inequality crisis in this country. I agree that 10 years is not enough time to judge an effect. But consider the two graphs below:

Graph #1- Top Marginal Tax Rate


So....

I think we need to have two different tiered tax systems. One for businesses and one for individuals. The business tax tiers would be higher (businesses have higher incomes in general as compared to individuals) thus creating lower tax rates for smaller businesses and higher tax rates for these conglomerate "too big to fail" monstrousities. This should help small businesses compete. In the same way, we should make the individual marginal tax rates more progressive (less flat). This should halt the increasing wealth inequality.

You often hear people say that the rich are contributing the highest percentage of the collected tax revenues in almost a century. That's absolutely correct, despite the fact their effective tax rate is the lowest it's ever been. Think about what that means carefully. It means their taxable income is the largest it's ever been as a percent of total income. Wealth inequality is the real danger to this country, and it's the real source of our debt problems.

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#21
In reply to #19

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/11/2011 11:36 AM

Lol you did it to me. I'm only going to comment on 1 item because the rest I either agree with or have mixed feelings about.

"Forgive this ridiculous example to prove that what you said is wrong. If a person with no income borrows $5 to eat, then that person does not have a spending problem, they have a revenue problem."

Yes I agree that if we borrow for needs it's ok (while this is an extreme example). However, borrowing for anything else is irresponsible. The most recent big example is the new healthcare bill. I'm sorry but there is nothing you can say to convince me that that is a need for US citizens. Until I started working as an engineer 5 years ago, I lived with no healthcare. If I was sick as a child, my parents paid to take me to the doctor (only if I was really sick and old school remedies didn't work). Not once did I go to the hospital until I broke my foot. Regardless of the reason, we paid for all of it or did without (and by no means were we wealthy).

Health insurance has been around for how long while mankind has existed for how much longer?

I use this as an example and I'm sure there are many others in our governments budget.

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#22
In reply to #21

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/11/2011 1:47 PM

You Wrote:"I'm sorry but there is nothing you can say to convince me that that is a need for US citizens."

I'm sorry to hear that. You've been quite reasonable in this conversation so I won't press you to change your mind. However, I will offer you a different perspective.

I worked to put myself through graduate school, mostly because I was unwilling to live on the $9000 dollars a year they pay Physics Graduate Students at the University at Albany. To put myself through school, I worked 3/4 time at work and took two graduate classes a semester. Because I was part time (30 hours a week), I wasn't eligible for Healthcare. I was able to use cobra for 18 months, but I was in grad school for 8 years (half time takes twice as long).

So my choice was:

1. Quit my job and become a full time graduate student earning $9000 a year or

2. Work part time and still make more than 5x that but go without healthcare for 7 years.

I choose choice #2, knowing full well that if I broke a bone, or otherwise seriously hurt myself I would end up tens of thousands in debt. I know this because my younger sister had to get a thyroid removed, didn't have healthcare (her husband's in construction) and ended up with a bill over $20,000 dollars. I rolled the diced knowing if I made it I would have a Ph.D. in Physics and be able to speak English, a rare combination (mainly because of the $9000 a year we pay for Physics grad students). I made it, luckily.

I tried at the time to buy an individual healthcare plan. I couldn't afford the $880 per month they wanted to cover a single individual. Plus the plan was pretty awful, nothing like the plans the bulk purchase of a corporation gets.

Maybe it's because I know a lot of poor people, who struggle and work hard and the system seems to do nothing but punish them for it, but I have a different view on healthcare.

Anyway, we obviously disagree about the issue of taxing or spending, but at least we do agree about the Science cuts.

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#18
In reply to #15

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/11/2011 10:08 AM

Taxation is a way to take from the producers to support the slackers.

If you take too much from the producers, then they see no value in continuing to produce. A farmer who has to give so much of his product to the king that he no longer has enough to feed himself is not going to continue farming...

This is not to say that I condone multi-million dollar salaries for people who's primary function is to convince us that we are wealthier than we really are. The government relies on these bankers and financial pundits (thus, allowing them to keep their fantasy gains) because if we pretend we are wealthier than we really are, then the government can take more of what we produce.

It is wrong to tax productivity. One should tax consumption- people pay for what they take out of circulation, rather than what they put in to it.

It is also wrong that executives take 20 times or more in salary from an organization than the janitor...

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#20
In reply to #18

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/11/2011 10:18 AM

You Wrote:"Taxation is a way to take from the producers to support the slackers"

In your opinion. An opinion that believes that poor people=slacker. A position that statistics and common sense proves completely incorrect.

Like my quote says:

"Anyone who has the power to make you believe absurdities has the power to make you commit injustices"-Voltaire

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#23
In reply to #15

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/11/2011 2:27 PM

You can take all the money that the "rich", whatever you determine to be rich, have and that would provide operating capital for the government for about a week.

This isn't rocket science as to why we are in such a financial malaise. It is because we have a government that is a bunch of out-of-control spenders. It's always easy to spend someone else's money and you don't care about cost or value.

You can't have a $1.5 Trillion deficit, in this year alone, and expect to survive very long. This administration talks about wanting/needing to cut the deficit but that is all it is is talk. Their actions say something far different.

The experience of John F. Kennedy and Ronald Reagan both demonstrated that revenue to the Treasury goes up when the tax rates are cut. There are other factors that led to an increased deficit during Pres. Reagan's term, other than tax rates. It was a Democratic controlled Congress that promised a bunch of cuts and then never kept their word and spent all the additional revenue that had come in because of the tax cuts. I guess character does matter after all.

"The businesses aren't spending the money. They are sitting on it." I don't begrudge the business-minded people sitting on their money, and I did say "their" money. It isn't the governments, the people who work for them, etc. I just heard a comment today by Michael Moore saying that this money is the people's and the "rich" should make it available.

If you don't know what is going to happen with; tax rates, an anti-free enterprise/anti-captitalist government, burdensome regulations, all instituted by many liberal people on both sides of the aisle who don't have a clue about economics or business; why should they put their livelihood at stake? You don't institute a business plan without being able to determine as many of the variables as possible. I think we here in the U.S. have the highest corporate tax rates in the world and we wonder why businesses are taking their headquarters and manufacturing elsewhere? The purpose of a business is not to give people job or to pay taxes to the government. It's purpose is to make money for those who had the vision, the guts, the funding, etc. to do something more than what they were doing.

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#24
In reply to #23

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/11/2011 3:11 PM

You Wrote:"You can take all the money that the "rich", whatever you determine to be rich, have and that would provide operating capital for the government for about a week."

I'll make this easy for you. I'll define rich as the top 10% of Americans in wealth. So you would like me (and everyone else) to believe that the top 10% of Americans combined hold less that 74 Billion dollars (which is the amount the Federal Government spends in a week). Would you perhaps like to rephrase this statement, or do you actually believe that?

You Wrote:"This isn't rocket science as to why we are in such a financial malaise."

No it isn't, yet you seem to have a terrible time understanding that it will take both tax increases and spending cuts. Of course you're confused, you seem to believe (correct me if you believe differently) that the top 10% of Americans have a combined 74 Billion Dollars net worth.

You Wrote:"here are other factors that led to an increased deficit during Pres. Reagan's term, other than tax rates. It was a Democratic controlled Congress that promised a bunch of cuts and then never kept their word and spent all the additional revenue that had come in because of the tax cuts. I guess character does matter after all."

Of course it wasn't the tax cuts. Reagan got it, that's why Reagan never would have raised taxes. Certainly his vice president who became president after him, George Bush, wouldn't have raised taxes. Except, they both raised taxes, so what are you talking about?

You Wrote:"I don't begrudge the business-minded people sitting on their money, and I did say "their" money. It isn't the governments, the people who work for them, etc."

I see, so you don't think it's the shareholder's money? Personally, since shareholders are the owners of corporations, I would think they would be correct in demanding a dividend. Instead these corporations keep 2 trillion dollar war chests.

If the corporations were to release all the money they are holding as dividends (2 trillion +) that would instantly raise 300 billion dollars for the Federal Government (15% dividend tax) and put 1.7 trillion dollars in the hands of consumers. Do you think the economy might improve then? I do. Even if half of that money was released (leaving corporations with a 1 trillion dollar warchest).

But hey, you believe that boards of corporations should have the right to withhold the money from the stockholders, so I'm sure you disagree.

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#25
In reply to #24

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/11/2011 4:04 PM

Roger you're right about the amount of time the government could operate if they confiscated the "rich peoples" money. It might be able to go a little longer, but the point is that even if you took it all it wouldn't solve the problem.

"I see, so you don't think it's the shareholder's money? Personally, since shareholders are the owners of corporations, I would think they would be correct in demanding a dividend. Instead these corporations keep 2 trillion dollar war chests."

Let me explain this in a way that may be understandable; let's say you are a farmer and you have 10 - 62# bags of seed wheat (10 bushels); is it better to save that seed for planting the next fall or do you feed it to the pigs because they need to eat right now? Which one has the greater capacity for benefit to all? That's obvious, you save it to plant and find whatever you can for the pigs to eat. It may not be what they would really like but it will get them through the difficult time. Application to us: get people off the government dole and just help set the environment that is conducive for them to fend for themselves.

This is the exact scenario of taking the money from those people who would like to invest (plant) the money at the most opportune time. If you don't ever plan on harvesting a crop, you may as well feed the seed to the pigs as grain (increase taxes), but you will never have a crop that can grow exponentially.

If I would take 60 or 70 cents of every dollar you make, how motivated are you to go out and bust your butt to make more? You won't be! Hence, the outcry and uprising against the status quo of big government as seen in the 2010 election where liberals, from both parties, lost about 700 combined seats in state and federal government. I predict in the 2012 election there will be many more liberal seats lost because of people being fed up with the tax and spend president and legislators from both parties.

The shareholders do have vested interest in the corporations. They vote with their money when they choose to invest their hardearded money in a particular company because they had confidence that the leadership of the company would be prudent with the expenditure of money. I know, you're going to bring up Enron or whomever, and use them as an example of companies who didn't do right. And you would be correct. But the problem isn't with the system, it is with people within the system who act with greed and without character. That is an inside (values) fix, not by making new laws etc.

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#26
In reply to #25

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/11/2011 4:15 PM

You Wrote"Roger you're right about the amount of time the government could operate if they confiscated the "rich peoples" money. It might be able to go a little longer, but the point is that even if you took it all it wouldn't solve the problem."

A little longer? Let's check the math.

The top 25% of Americans held 54.2 Trillion in net worth in 2009. The total U.S. deficit is currently 14.5 Trillion and we spend roughly 4 trillion dollars a year. If, as you suggested, we were to seize the wealth of the top 25% of Americans, we could pay off our debt and run the country without any federal taxes for roughly 10 years. (Link)

It seems to me like it would solve the problem. Keep in mind I'm not saying this is what we should do, I'm just pointing out that seizing the wealth of the wealthiest 1/4 of Americans would eliminate our debt and eliminate all federal taxes for 10 years.

Comments?

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#27
In reply to #26

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/11/2011 4:22 PM

"It seems to me like it would solve the problem"

And it would eliminate the top 25% of the wealthiest Americans from this country. I know I wouldn't hang around for long if the government said they were ready to take my money. Where's my ticket to the Philippines?

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#29
In reply to #26

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/11/2011 5:09 PM

Regardless of the time frame that the government could operate by stealing someone else's money, it is still a wrong approach. You say the government would run for 10 years. Certainly not at the rate of growth this clown in the White House is operating at. By the end of his first, and hopefully last, term he will have accumulated an enormous amount of debt liability that will saddle your great, great grandchildren with a debt that will never be repaid if we continue to operate with the existing mentality.

Refer back to the illustration of the wheat seed on Post #25 and also AP's Post. What motivation is there to bust your butt just so someone else who isn't motivated enough to go and get it done on their own gets something to eat.

That figure of $54T is not liquid assets that can be easily stolen and redistributed by the governmant. Even if there was that amount of value, what is it in? That money was invested in other companies, assets, etc. Although, after people saw what these idiots did with our "economic crises", they showed how confident they are about the outcome and that value is probably in the neighborhood of 20% less over the last week. Check your 401K and see how much you've dropped in value in the last 2 years.

"I don't want my money to be redistributed, I want my work ethic to be redistributed!"

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#31
In reply to #29

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/11/2011 8:00 PM

You Wrote:"Regardless of the time frame that the government could operate by stealing someone else's money, it is still a wrong approach."

I never said it was the right approach. You seem to be getting confused so let me take you back through the conversation:

1. I said that I believed the current deficit was the result of taxes being cut too low under Bush (Here is the post)

2. You responded with regards to this statement (1), that it wouldn't work because you wrote: "You can take all the money that the "rich", whatever you determine to be rich, have and that would provide operating capital for the government for about a week." (Here is the post)

3. I gave you a chance to retract your absurd statement (2) (Here is the post), then you essentially avoided the topic with an equally absurd statement that was meant to be conciliatory (Here is the post) at which point I said enough is enough and showed the actual numbers which showed the absurdity of your statement (2) (Here is the post).

4. At this point you clearly become confused and seem to forget that you had dismissed my suggestion of a modest tax increase on the rich to close the deficit based on your absurd "fact" given in statement (2). A statement I showed to be absurd in statement (3). You then start arguing against statement (3) as though it were my solution to the debt problem (apparently completely forgetting my statement (1)). Either that or you are suggesting that a 5-10% increase in taxes on the rich is equivalent to taking all the assets of the rich and redistributing them. (Here is the post)


In Conclusion

You list nonsense facts, get confused in conversations just a few threads long, and seem to not even mind that you underestimated the wealth of the richest Americans, making their net worth 732x smaller than it actually is.

You tell me, how am I supposed to have a rational discussion with you? Don't you just believe what you want to believe, facts be damned? Reread our thread and tell me. Are you even willing to reconsider the fact that taxes being raised would close the deficit? Or is it cut spending and that's it?

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#33
In reply to #31

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/11/2011 8:39 PM

get confused in conversations just a few threads long

Posts........................I think you meant, just a few posts long.

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#34
In reply to #33

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/11/2011 8:58 PM

It looks like I get confused in a single post.

(Yes, you're right, I did mean "just a few posts long")

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#28
In reply to #25

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/11/2011 5:07 PM

the debt doesn't matter

http://www.usdebtclock.org/

we're in it's the economy stupid territory

lowering government expenditures actually makes the problem worse

look what the markets did after tea time, the money went to treasury notes & gold & the like

I'm sticking with stop the unfettered outsourcing of profits

Profits that are only possible if there is a american consumer class

the infrastructure of which costs money to maintain

could it be done more efficiently? of course

the pig at the trough are the mega corps, milling about looking for another meal [tax cut]

this ludacris dream of markets with out regulation, would turn out to be a nightmare for most of us

we need oversight by government, regulation is a reaction to abuse by the semifree market

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#30
In reply to #28

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/11/2011 7:21 PM

"the debt doesn't matter

we're in it's the economy stupid territory

lowering government expenditures actually makes the problem worse"

Garth, please send me your credit card #'s and I'll be glad to "help" out your economic situtation. There are a bunch of toys I would like but don't have the money to get them on my own, but I would be glad to spend your money to get them. If it doesn't work on the level of your home and mine, why would we think it would work on the scale of a Federal Government?

Let us spend our own money. We will spend our money much more wisely and efficiently that the government ever will and the Unemployment Rate won't be anywhere near the almost 10% that it is nationally and 18 - 20% in some parts of the country. Employment in the government sector has grown exponentially more in the last 2 years. Need I remind us, the government doesn't produce any product or service! It is the "pig at the trough" and it is ravenous.

No one has ever said that there shouldn't be any government involvement in our society. Let's just make sure the Federal Government follows the guidelines of the Constitution the way the Founding Fathers designed it to work. Man's nature is to sink to the lowest common denominator so guidelines and laws and enforcement need to be present.

The Constitution provides for a judicial system that was to govern for the general good of it's legal citizens; laws so that orderly interstate commerce could take place; a united government that could protect it's borders and interact with international countries (sovereignty); respond to national crises'. Outside of that the Federal Government wasn't supposed to have much involvement in the affairs of society.

Like I said in an earlier Post, the problem isn't with the economic system we have operated by for 235 years (quite successfully, to the benefit of the world we live in) for the majority of that time. The problem is with those people who operate greedily, without character. [Which we can't teach in schools anymore. We will reap the results of that for years to come. Heaven forbid we teach our youngsters in school that there is right and wrong and to act with honor and character in their relationships in society.]

If our government was efficient with the money it takes from us, there would be plenty to do whatever it needs to do according to the Constitution.

If we want to have a proper tax system take away the power from legislators by instituting the FAIR TAX. That way everyone would pay their share regardless of whether they are legal or here illegally, old, young, poor or rich. You would pay tax according to your expenditures.

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#32
In reply to #30

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/11/2011 8:25 PM

so you don't have a mortgage, paid for your house & property in cash did you?

what makes you think a lemonade stand works on the same as an entire country

just because you can't hold a service in your hand, doesn't mean it has no value

we are in fact operating under the constitution just as the founders intended, government is not a static thing

The Fair Tax is another [carpet]Tea Party scheme to irreversibly break government

the black market will love it,

personally FT is enacted, I'll never buy anything new again

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#38
In reply to #32

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/12/2011 8:53 AM

I do have a mortgage, but I am able to meet the obligations of it without stealing more money from anyone else, i.e. taxes.

It's not a point of a lemonade stand and the entire country. It is an economic principle. If you borrow money and especially more than you can afford to pay back in a timely fashion, your ship is going down! Our country is sinking in debt! The only way to help alleviate that is to cut the obligation (spending) and tweak the conditions of the business environment so small and large businesses alike are willing to invest their money in expanded products and services which will increase employment rate. This isn't a hard concept. It is very basic. If you had a choice to be part of an organization that was big and growing fast and debt-free or one that was barely moving <2% growth with 50%+ debt load, which one would you want to get on board with? It's a no-brainer. There is a proverb that says "the borrower is slave to the lender." Debt = Bondage. As long as I have a mortgage, I am in bondage to the bank. That isn't freedom.

There are some debts that do provide a value to the borrower. A business borrows to build manufacturing facilities so more products can produced and sold; you buy an appreciating asset, etc.

"just because you can't hold a service in your hand, doesn't mean it has no value"

I didn't say there was no value in the government. It has in the past served, and currently in some areas is providing great value to us as a nation. But, for the most part our government is a bloated and rotting carcass that only draws flies and scavengers to the coming carnage. The government doesn't produce products with higher value it only consumes the money taken in with little value in return (in most cases).

"we are in fact operating under the constitution just as the founders intended, government is not a static thing"

We aren't anywhere close to operating under the constrictions of the Constitution! Read the Constitution and the Articles of Confederation sometime and you will be amazed at how far we have strayed. It is not a "living document", as some would like to interpret it. There are princples and guidelines that set the parameters for the Federal Government to operate most and efficiently within and we are way outside of that, which is painfully obvious. "Methods are many, principles are few, methods may change, principles never do." You're correct with the statement that "government is not static" but the principles/guidelines it is to operate within is static.

"The Fair Tax is another [carpet]Tea Party scheme to irreversibly break government"

The Fair Tax wasn't formulated by the Tea Party, which isn't a "Party" at all. There isn't a corporate structure, organization or platform. It is simply a loose confederation of people who recognize how far our government structure in both parties have strayed from the principles we were founded upon and want to see our country return to fiscal, primarily, stability. You're right in the fact that it would "break government". It would help to take away the ability of the politicians to buy votes with your and my money through wasteful welfare and entitlement programs.

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#40
In reply to #38

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/12/2011 10:01 AM

We aren't anywhere close to operating under the constrictions of the Constitution! Read the Constitution and the Articles of Confederation sometime and you will be amazed at how far we have strayed. It is not a "living document", as some would like to interpret it. There are princples and guidelines that set the parameters for the Federal Government to operate most and efficiently within and we are way outside of that, which is painfully obvious. "Methods are many, principles are few, methods may change, principles never do." You're correct with the statement that "government is not static" but the principles/guidelines it is to operate within is static.


this makes no sense
work within the system as it exists
not the one you imagine should exist
The 50's are over....


social/political organizations don't operate in a vacuum

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#42
In reply to #40

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/12/2011 10:21 AM

The system as it exists is a mess.

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#44
In reply to #42

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/12/2011 10:35 AM

how do you clean up a mess?

doesn't it depend on how much time, money & manpower to devote to the project?

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#45
In reply to #44

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/12/2011 10:49 AM

I don't think it's going to get cleaned up. I'm just going to try and take care of myself and mine, and enjoy the ride. Kind of what I'm doing with this thread.

It's more fun watching arguments go nowhere, than actually putting thought into something that goes nowhere. Which these threads do, every time.

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#43
In reply to #38

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/12/2011 10:30 AM

It's not a point of a lemonade stand and the entire country. It is an economic principle. If you borrow money and especially more than you can afford to pay back in a timely fashion, your ship is going down! Our country is sinking in debt! The only way to help alleviate that is to cut the obligation (spending) and tweak the conditions of the business environment so small and large businesses alike are willing to invest their money in expanded products and services which will increase employment rate. This isn't a hard concept. It is very basic. If you had a choice to be part of an organization that was big and growing fast and debt-free or one that was barely moving <2% growth with 50%+ debt load, which one would you want to get on board with? It's a no-brainer. There is a proverb that says "the borrower is slave to the lender." Debt = Bondage. As long as I have a mortgage, I am in bondage to the bank. That isn't freedom.

you are trying to apply the principles [not the actual reality] of your personal finances, to a system 100,000,000 times the size


do your children do chores? Hmm sounds a bit like a tax
who decides what they are, I'll bet it's a dictatorship

if you are suggesting we run the country as you run your household or business, we need to do a deep examination of what that actually means

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#46
In reply to #43

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/12/2011 12:11 PM

What is so hard to understand that if you borrow more (even if it's for a good cause) than you take in you're toast? It doesn't matter what the setting is, a household, a business or a government.

You may be able to "cook the books", shuffle money around for a little bit, but there will be a "piper to pay" at some point. Should we just not care about what has gotten us to this point of crises and just cover our eyes and pretend that it isn't as bad as it is? Or should we finally decide to do something about it?

"Problems don't get better with age or neglect". That saying applies to mechanical apparatus, relationships or finances. The sooner a solution is implemented the better off we are, the less damage is caused and the easier/cheaper the fix. Try driving your car for another 500 miles after the brake wear indicators starting making noise. It goes from jsut being $15 for pads to replacing the rotors too ($100's).

You're right about my kids working at home. It's called responsibility. "With rights (to live at home) comes responsibility." They also have done that for 17 years without pay/allowance. I heard an allowance referred to once "as the precursor for welfare". "I lived for another week/month so I deserve money." We have a couple of home-based businesses and the kids get paid for working with them. They are then responsible for their clothes, vehicle expenses, etc. It teaches them, discipline with money, delayed gratification, that if you don't work and provide value there isn't anyone coming along to give you what you want. That isn't to say that we don't give our kids things or whatever, we do. It is because we love them and want to do something for them, not because we feel obligated. I'm not sure how you refer to chores as "tax".

You're right about the dictatorship. That's the way the family works best. Someone has to take final responsibility and be the final authority. It's the way is way designed to work. The father is the one who is ultimately responsible for what happens in the family. The husband and wife work together as a team, but the man is the ultimate responsible party. Don't confuse dictatorship with despotism though. The wife and kids are not equal together either. The kids are on the bottom of the totem pole.

There's a bit of a rabbit trail. Sorry.

The philosophical difference in the role of government is pronounced. Conservatives seek a small, limited role of government where people are encouraged to provide for themselves as much as possible. Liberals on the other hand develope an entitlement mentality of the citizenry by having a big government that is involved in almost every facet of life where the citizenry expects to be taken care of from womb to tomb.

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#47
In reply to #46

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/12/2011 12:47 PM

you did your usual

puke out a few talking points

& change the subject

you at least admit that you are trying to apply dictatorial logic [your household] to a more communal situation [USA]

taking on more debt devalues the dollar making the repayment [tomorrows money] less valuable

our manufacturing output [exports] become more attractive on the world market

we are in some ways outsourcing our debt to our creditors

serves em right

we should not care about the size of our government, but the efficiency of individual functions

the big picture will take care of itself

this whole argument about the size of government reminds me of the peace talks during the Vietnam war. They spent a year arguing about the shape of the table & who sat where

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#35
In reply to #23

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/11/2011 9:45 PM

"I think we here in the U.S. have the highest corporate tax rates in the world and we wonder why businesses are taking their headquarters and manufacturing elsewhere?"

I posted this on another thread.

It seems to me a lot of the 'data in political positions' has never been updated from the 50's and 60's.

Another concept that appears 'universally un-grasped' is the "spending" - be that borrowed, or not, - is 'jobs'.

The trickiest thing about this 'debt focus' is that it is self defeating, both in "investor confidence" and "weening off it without a massive loss of jobs".

I.e. Cut the spending = cut jobs,

Which is why neither party has a choice - it's borrow, or collapse.

I also read, recently on CR4 that the "spend/tax burden" is 15% Fed and 25% State, so the idea of cutting the Fed is not really much of a cut in this "hip pocket" argument.

Opinion wise, as a foreigner, this all looks like a guy that has woken up in the middle of the night, realized he has a mortgage, is so shocked by that he thinks "I must pay it off immediately!", but is so distraught at the thought/amount, can't go to work and earn the money to do so.

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#36
In reply to #35

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/11/2011 11:58 PM

oh there you go again making sense

we're having extended political theater, a diversion

much like a child that will make any excuse to avoid doing the dishes [insert least favorite chore]

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#37
In reply to #36

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/12/2011 2:20 AM

Yar well sorry about that.

I was hoping to write a few 'sensible things', or at least try to, as earlier, but the OP somehow seeing as me "making the rules" for asking "what would have us do?" - to which a 'non-answer', as any facilitator, or lobbyist, even editor or publisher, or publicist, will tell you, puts paid to productive application of their skill-sets and means further dialogue on progress is futile.

So; where else could it go - except to another, another, reprise, of the same old circus of; my irrelevant junk data is bigger than yours?

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#39
In reply to #37

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/12/2011 9:37 AM

isn't funny how garbled the failure analysis gets, when sacred cows are involved?

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#41
In reply to #37

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/12/2011 10:14 AM

It's a debate, not a lecture, I'm allowed to ask questions. All I was asking for was a clarification. I said I would answer your question once you provided it. For some reason that upset you, whatever, but I don't think it's unreasonable to ask "what are you getting at?" which is essentially what I asked (in a polite way).

Or to put it another way, apparently you can ask all the questions you want, but I'm not allowed to ask one?

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#48
In reply to #41

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/12/2011 9:39 PM

"For some reason that upset you"

Not at all Roger. You are totally free to read something into my writing that is not there, then jump to an unanswerable "polite question" based on that imagined issue.

Neither of your responses to my initial posts are/were point relevant - so what is the point of further discussion. Note I do not use "debate" as this infers a 'win/loose' mindset. I.e. what I thought you may be wanting was a 'win/win', but I can't do much if everything I say is regarded/painted/read as, a varsity Richard length contest.

Perhaps if you forget who writes a post and just think about what the post says, you might more clearly see what is actually meant.

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#49
In reply to #48

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/12/2011 10:27 PM

Basically you complained in an earlier post that I never give a direct answer to the question of what should be done. I give a direct answer everytime this discussion comes up. I say we have to change the way scientists look at the problem. I mentioned a number of ways this could be done which included forming a scientific association.

You ignored everything else in your response and fixated on the association writing:

What are the "proactive steps" to form this Association?

Notice your use of italics to emphasize the phrase "proactive steps". Obviously you are making some sort of distinction in terms of what you consider an "action", so I asked you to clarify. You've been complaining ever since. If you don't want to call it a debate, that's fine, call it a discussion, but please don't get annoyed because our discussion isn't going exactly the precise way you wanted it to go, discussions ebb and flow. I'm not reading anything into your posts, I'm just reacting to them as they come.

Think about it this way. I obviously want to tell people my view of what the Antiscience is. Why would I try to be evasive when asked about it?

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#50
In reply to #49

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/12/2011 10:58 PM

"You ignored everything else in your response and fixated on the association writing"

Did I not say I was regarding the main body as a mission statement?

What you are 'reading in' is my interest in the 'new idea' in your post, is dismissive of all else - therefore Roger/mission/effort to date.

Sounds like your "rule" is I'm required to acknowledge/address/applaud, 'point by point' everything you utter, in order to comment on an aspect?

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#51
In reply to #50

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/12/2011 11:18 PM

Yes, I want you to applaud everything I write point by point, in order, from the beginning please. Finally I'm getting through to you.

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#52
In reply to #51

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/13/2011 9:34 AM

Part A. Good luck with that

Part B. sigh; yeah, part A is 'Roger humor', but what you don't realize is, to many, it's just confirmation. What your actually "getting through" is a lot of ammunition and feet.

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#53
In reply to #52

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/13/2011 11:50 AM

Everybody makes it more complicated than it is. I'm pretty simple in what I believe.

I believe we live in a world where there is an anti-abstraction sentiment born out of existentialism run amok.

Everything else is just a consequence of this belief

This anti-abstraction manifests itself in a number of ways, from the antiscience (global warming deniers, vaccination avoiders, creationists, and the much more subtle), to anti-religious (think Dawkins), Laissez-faire Economics, a hatred of socialism, fascism, and disturbingly, a growing hatred for the complexity of democracy and republics (a complexity that saves us from dissolving into a dictatorship). A downright contempt for philosophy. Valuing science only for the technology it produces, etc.

This anti-abstraction era, as in all eras, has it's proverbs to help teach it's values. Phrases such as "ivory tower", "Absent Minded Professor", "Common Sense", "Dumb it down", "The simplest answer is the best", "If it ain't broke, don't fix it", "he (she's) grounded", "don't over complicate things", "stay focused", "If you're too open minded, your brains will fall out", "book smart", "live in the moment", "life is passing you by", "you can't teach an old dog new tricks" (too often said with pride by the old dog),"Head in the clouds", "Keep it simple stupid", "Don't overthink it", "see the forest for the trees", All phrases reinforcing the idea "simple=good, complex/abstract=bad".

So what do I say?

  1. I say that nothing will be solved until we all realize this underlying anti-abstraction that's driving us to do things.

  2. I say scientists need to immediately stop reinforcing the "abstraction=bad" idea by degrading themselves and must immediately stop applying anti-abstraction outside of their fields (by attacking religion for instance). I say forget about everyone else, we scientists must start changing the way we think about the world, casting off these oppressive chains of excessive existentialism.

  3. If there is no current debate within science on a subject (Global Warming, Evolution, or Vaccinations), do not humor "debates" on the subject. (This one wins me no friends)

Now I know

That many (most?) people believe what I wrote above is complete nonsense, and maybe I am wrong, but I don't believe myself to be wrong. So I'm going to continue arguing my case until someone illustrates a logical flaw in my argument I can't account for. Could I keep this belief to myself, only post and comment the way I know the majority people would agree on issues with my typical humor and insight and thus endear myself to the CR4 community? Of course. My god that would be boring. Screw that.


I will try to be friendly (since any anger I have at any personal assaults rarely last more than an hour). And unlike Global Warming, Creationism, and Vaccination, I wouldn't presume to pretend that my Anti-abstraction idea is beyond debate, quite the opposite, I'm hoping it will someday get debated (rather than dismissed). I cannot bring myself to mind if someone doesn't believe this Anti-abstraction idea, that is a perfectly normal response and I'm cool with it. People (not you necessarily), can scoff at my idea of anti-abstraction and even try to make me seem foolish, crazy or stubborn for pushing it, but I know too well the more I write, the more difficult it is to get those criticisms to stick to me (because they simply aren't true). So with this confidence in myself and my abilities, that stuff doesn't really bother me for an extended length of time either (sort of rolls off me).

So make all the comments you want about me "confirming peoples' opinion", and please, throw "sigh" in every response if it makes you feel better (to help you cope with the suffering you must feel to try and "reach" someone as thick headed as myself).

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#54
In reply to #53

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/13/2011 12:50 PM

You're a funny guy.

You say that you welcome debate and discussion, and yet your replies, (even to people that are trying to agree with you), are toxic.

From your first line: Everybody makes it more complicated than it is.

From your third paragraph: This anti-abstraction era, as in all eras, has it's proverbs to help teach it's values................."don't over complicate things", "simple=good, complex/abstract=bad".

Are you attempting to prove anti abstraction, demonstrate it, or both?

And here: we scientists must start changing the way we think about the world, casting off these oppressive chains of excessive existentialism.

Engineers use science all the time, but engineer and scientist aren't exactly synonymous.

From reading your threads, the only conclusion that makes sense is that budget cuts=antiscience. That's where every one of these threads ends up going.

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#55
In reply to #54

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/13/2011 1:31 PM

You Wrote:"From your first line: Everybody makes it more complicated than it is.

From your third paragraph: This anti-abstraction era, as in all eras, has it's proverbs to help teach it's values................."don't over complicate things", "simple=good, complex/abstract=bad"."

Excellent!

I won't lie, you've nailed me. I have said many times I am also a child of this Anti-Abstraction age, and you have deftly caught me demonstrating it. Yes, I agree with you, it was ironic that I should open with that phrase (that is clearly anti-abstraction) and really isn't even remotely true. I couldn't help it, the anti-abractionist in me, did the very thing I was saying is a problem. This is why we need to debate the subject rather than dismiss it. So we can catch where we're doing it and stop doing it.

So kudos on your catch (I'm being very sincere here), I both defined it (on purpose) and demonstrated it (by accident).

At least I feel like you get what I'm saying having so accurately pointed out an example of it.

You Wrote:"From reading your threads, the only conclusion that makes sense is that budget cuts=antiscience. That's where every one of these threads ends up going."

Countries demonstrate their priorities by how they spend their money.

You Wrote:"You say that you welcome debate and discussion, and yet your replies, (even to people that are trying to agree with you), are toxic."

No they're not, don't be such a drama queen.

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#56
In reply to #55

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/13/2011 3:48 PM

I don't agree that anti science leads to budget cuts in science...........at least not directly, but maybe some.

The budget cuts to science, stem from the fact that politicians are cowards. They will take the path of least resistance every time. They will cut the things that piss off the least amount of people.

I already know your response. The reason they feel comfortable cutting science, is because of antiscience sentiment in the US.

That could be true. If society had a fervor for scientific achievement, the politicians wouldn't be so quick to cut it.

Don't worry about it roger. Before long we will have the official title of debtor nation. The government will continue spending money trying to make things better. We will continue to fall behind other nations in science, math, overall education, manufacturing, etc. Those will quickly be followed by overall employment, standard of living, etc. The rest of the rich and the US based corporations will simply leave.......................and finally we will have true equality here. The government will run everything, and those of us that can't afford to leave will be paying an 80% tax rate just to keep up with our interest payments.

Can't wait.

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#57
In reply to #56

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/13/2011 4:03 PM

Wow that's exactly what I was trying to say. I guess the problem is I'm not as a smart as you to put it together so well (making fun of me not you lol).

You know I live in a very conservative area of the US but I don't sense an anti-science sentiment. It's more of a sense of apathy towards science. I mean how much cooler is it to know what Mike "the Situation" is doing on Jersey Shore than some dumb Kepler Mission?

I think we've just grown fat as a nation and it's easy to not think or care about the intricacies of our universe around us. Look at how many people have a high standard of living (compared to the rest of the world) without having to do anything?

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#58
In reply to #56

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/13/2011 4:15 PM

Either that or we'll be working 80 hour weeks with no healthcare for $3.00 an hour with no vacation time while I'm lectured about how we need to take another pay cut so our "overseer" can afford a better whip to improve our productivity so we can compete with china.

Meanwhile the slave owners wealthy, will be complaining about paying 99.9999% of the tax revenues and demanding their tax rate to be reduced to 0% to grow business so that we can eliminate the debt, while a 700 lb Rush Limbaugh is carried around on a litter from factory to factor lecturing us that corporations are people and have rights and the belief that workers have rights is socialism.

We'll be the greatest exporter on Earth, better than even China. How proud we'll feel as we pass out from exhaustion every night in our workers cots in the factory.

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#67
In reply to #58

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/13/2011 7:27 PM

Um, Rush Limbaugh is a radio talk show host, not a politician. Don't let him bother you, he represents himself.

I'm sorry you hate your job.................get another one.

You're right. The republicans are guilty of providing loopholes for the wealthy and the corporations..........................it's wrong. But it's the people who fund the campaigns.

On the other hand, anyone that earns an honest buck, deserves to keep most of it. Whether it's you, me, a rich guy or a corporation.

The democrats are also guilty of providing, and exploiting loopholes in the tax code. You're naive if you don't think so.

The thing that really pisses me off about the democrats, is that they claim to look out for the little people................and yet they implement policies to create more little people for the sole reason of getting votes.

Have you ever been to the projects in the inner city................I have. I've had friends there.

To see that social engineering has reduced people to living hand to mouth in brick and mortar cells waiting for the next welfare check disgusts me. And yet come election time, there is the DNC feeding these people a freaking biscuit and getting them on the bus to go vote.

Martin Luther King would weep if he could see what his brothers and sisters have been reduced to by the democrats.

I'm afraid we have turned the corner as a nation. The future is up in the air.

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#72
In reply to #67

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/13/2011 9:17 PM

You Wrote:"I'm sorry you hate your job.................get another one."

I don't hate my job in particular. What I'm describing is the situation as I see it in this country. I don't think my job is particularly better or worse than any other corporate job. Though I like my boss (just in case he reads this ).

You Wrote:"You're right. The republicans are guilty of providing loopholes for the wealthy and the corporations..........................it's wrong. But it's the people who fund the campaigns."

I agree, and it's not just the Republicans.

You Wrote:"The democrats are also guilty of providing, and exploiting loopholes in the tax code. You're naive if you don't think so."

I agree with you.

You Wrote:"he thing that really pisses me off about the democrats, is that they claim to look out for the little people................and yet they implement policies to create more little people for the sole reason of getting votes."

That's not true in my opinion. That's how the right portrays the democrats.

You Wrote:"Martin Luther King would weep if he could see what his brothers and sisters have been reduced to by the democrats."

I disagree with you here. I believe that an overly flat tax code is mostly responsible for this. I understand the argument that you're making, that entitlements make people lazy, but it's simply not true. It just prevents them from starving. What is making people lazy is hopelessness. It is harder to be upwardly mobile in society than it used to be. Just too many headwinds.

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#74
In reply to #72

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/13/2011 10:34 PM

I know how things work, from the bottom up. I realized how easy it was to work the system and made the decision to get out. I've traded food stamps for booze and drugs. You?..................It's the currency of government sanctioned rats.

You have no idea of what's really going on Dr Pink.

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#75
In reply to #74

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/13/2011 10:58 PM

Here's what's going on with me. I want to wake up in the morning, look in the mirror, and be proud of what I see. Accumulation of wealth and power mean nothing.

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#77
In reply to #75

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/13/2011 11:17 PM

Fair enough. I think this discussion has petered out anyway. I'll start a new thread and we can start all over again .

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#81
In reply to #77

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/13/2011 11:39 PM

Excellent idea. The search for roger's testicles and penis continues..................

See you around the antiscience on CR4.

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#82
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Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/13/2011 11:57 PM

Fear not you little gutless wonder. I will take your side if it feels appropriate.

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#84
In reply to #82

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/14/2011 12:01 AM

Look, I've got you talking to yourself now.

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#83
In reply to #81

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/14/2011 12:01 AM

That's what I get for using the word "Petered".

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#93
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Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/14/2011 7:02 AM

You're wrong roger.

I've got skin in the game. I'm 49 years old and I've got 8 grandkids. My daughters figured out how to get on the dole, and they're stuck there. If they want a raise, they get pregnant. Don't sit here and tell me that the status quo isn't destructive.

I don't blow my opinion out my nose. I'm so sick of the way things are that I want to puke!

There are millions more just like them. I am unable to put my contempt for the government into words. Great..............I'm probably on a watch list now.

I'm non violent.........................but I'm ill with what's going on.

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#94
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Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/14/2011 7:26 AM

My argument that there's a better way has no merit. Everything is free............and it is. I've lost the battle. Sometimes I don't sleep................and sometimes I cry.

I'm crying now.

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#95
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Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/14/2011 7:56 AM

Being an American of Irish descent, I thought for a moment our legacy as tough people would continue. I was wrong.

I thought for a moment that the men and women that have died for this country meant something....................apparently, I was wrong again.

God is dead..................take it roger. Make it your own. Shape this country into what you see fit.

I hope you don't mind if there's a smirk on my face.

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#96
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Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/14/2011 8:13 AM

I enjoy these threads.

As we sit here and decry the US constitution as old fashioned, we run ourselves into financial and moral bankruptcy.

One thing is for sure...................the future will be interesting.

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#97
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Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/14/2011 8:35 AM

I'm getting tired of swimming up stream roger. What would you suggest? Throwing in the towel? Give up? Stop trying? Give me guidance you little F^cknut.

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#98
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Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/14/2011 8:55 AM

Let's take quick look at black people in the US.

Spiritual

Intelligent

Hard working

Good people

That was the old days. Our government has convinced them that they have no worth. Get in line for a chunk of cheese. Bull$hit!!!!!

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#99
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Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/14/2011 9:15 AM

I've got a daughter that has lost her kids due to heroin addiction. She's pregnant again.

I want you and Garthh to make me feel good about that. I want you and Garthh to convince me that the US government didn't make that scenario possible.

I look forward to your response.

How in the hell can I instill a work ethic when the government says you have to do nothing?

I'm losing the battle.........................I've lost the battle. I'm out of words. I can't correct this wrong.

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#100
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Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/14/2011 9:27 AM

I can't put the depth of my sadness in words.

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#101
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Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/14/2011 9:52 AM

How can I possibly compete? I tell my daughters that they're screwing up. And the DNC is telling them that it's alright............everything is good.

Have babies.................it's not your fault. We will take care of you...............as long as you promise to vote democrat.

Fuq me!!!!

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#102
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Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/14/2011 10:07 AM

Of course republicans are the enemy.

People are faced with, "go to work" vs " do nothing", gee that's a no brainer.

I hope that CR4 survives so that we can see things unveil.

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#104
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Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/14/2011 10:36 AM

kramarat to daughter: You have got to pull

your head out of your ass and get a job.

Daughter: Why?

kramarat: You will feel better as a person.

Daughter: Why?

kramarat: It's just the way things work.

Daughter: I make more money doing nothing and having babies than you ever made.

kramarat: You win.

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#105
In reply to #102

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/14/2011 10:44 AM

you should probably get some sleep

I don't want to wind you up when you are in this state

I'd rather talk about GFCI's

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#106
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Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/14/2011 1:01 PM

Nevermind sleep.

If I get spinning fast enough, I can actually stand up straight.

I've always worked hard. I've got Uncle Sam telling my daughters that they don't have to work at all............just have kids and we will take care of you.

I'm sick of it. There is not an emoticon to describe my puke.

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#107
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Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/14/2011 1:25 PM

My oldest has been on government supplied 100 milligrams a day methadone for 2 fuqing years. The government is not my friend. My words of self responsibility fall on deaf ears.

Tell me a good government story that will make me feel better.

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#108
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Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/14/2011 1:46 PM

How am I supposed to fight a government that has convinced my daughters that doing nothing is worthwhile................nothing is their fault? Tell me.

Let me tell you guys something about your lovey dovey socialist agenda...............................real lives are being flushed down the toilet. I hope you're proud of what you have accomplished.

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#109
In reply to #108

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/14/2011 10:41 PM

every decision we make brings us to the place we are

you can blame other people for your decisions

but in the end, it's

freewill

personal responsibility, for your decisions

you can't help someone, with the problem they don't accept that they have


I'm sorry your daughter isn't making good decisions

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#143
In reply to #109

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/17/2011 1:34 PM

Isn't making the decisions that Dad likes...

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#110
In reply to #72

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/15/2011 4:04 PM

You (kramarat) Wrote:"he thing that really pisses me off about the democrats, is that they claim to look out for the little people................and yet they implement policies to create more little people for the sole reason of getting votes."

R Pink - "That's not true in my opinion. That's how the right portrays the democrats."

Kramarat is correct in this statement! This isn't how the "right portrays the democrats", this is based upon the observations following many years of action taken by liberal-minded people. The liberals derive their power from an uneducated, dependent populace and that is exactly what is being accomplished through an educational system which intentionally segregates young and older students alike from the truth of historical and economic foundations which have helped set the stage for our greatness.

We (liberals on both sides of the political aisle) have spent thousands of billions of dollars to seek to eradicate poverty and the situation (number of people receiving government assistance) just keeps getting worse instead of becoming better. The proof is in the pudding, so to speak. It isn't a characterization by anyone at all. Since those are the results of many years of failed policies, it would behoove us to take another tack. "Albert Einstein said, "the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over expecting a different result." We have been doing the same thing in Washington for a long time with miserable results (overall).

If you want to look out for the little people, start by setting the stage to do things for themselves. Don't give them things, unless there are extenuating circumstances. Just help to create an economic environment where there is more opportunity available regarding jobs and income. That is done by allowing small and large business to operate without needless and hindering regulation. An example of this is something I heard about that is being proposed by imbecile in this current administration. It will call for anyone working on a farm to be required to have a CDL Liscense to operate any kind of farm equipment. That will not promote a vibrant farming industry in way. This is just one example of an out-of-control government that has as it's goal to kill industry of any kind.

If you want to become educated with economic principles that work, read The Road to Serfdom by W.A. Hayek.

It is alarming how little information of our past great leaders and more recent leaders is being left in the dust, only to be overshadowed by liberal legislators and thought processes that have taken us down a dangerous road of dependency upon government, whether it be state or federal. An uneducated populace (which liberals want) will fall for any little tidbit that some legislator will promise. That legislator then gets voted for because the uneducated voter will think he is going to get something for "free".

There isn't anything free from the government, because the government has no money of it's own. It only has what it takes from us. Class warfare is then introduced because someone "has too much" while someone else "doesn't have enough and they don't deserve it anyway. They probably cheated or took advantage of someone else in order to get it." This thinking is rampant and only getting worse as people are less and less informed about capitalism and free enterprise.

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#111
In reply to #110

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/16/2011 7:19 AM

There was one inaccuracy in my rant. I have never been on welfare, collected food stamps, or traded them for booze and drugs. I know it used to be prevalent though. I've collected unemployment for one 6 month stretch in my life.

The bad decisions that my daughters are making, are sponsored by the US government. They are making decisions that they wouldn't be able to make without the free government programs. There is nothing in place to encourage my daughters, or the millions like them to abandon that lifestye. In fact, it is encouraged, and to me it makes no sense at all.

For the most part, I try to just accept it. It is personal to me and when I hear people making the case that the government can fix anything at all, I tend to get wound up....................I think you're wrong...........and I've got living proof.

Obviously these programs have to be locked in place, any hint at changing them, and I suspect that what would happen in our large US cities would make what happened in London look like a little party...................it's frustrating.

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#112
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Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/16/2011 7:43 AM

The girls in these programs start having kids when they're young. If they get married, they lose their benefits. Planned Parenthood is in place to help them work the system.

The boys are cut off when they turn 18. The only way for them to get the easy money is to join a gang and sell drugs. Even in this relatively small area, drive by shootings occur almost daily. I've got the news on in the background, and a 17 year old girl was shot in a drive by last night. We in the US are going into probably the 4th or 5th generation of this dependant class. They have been created by the government...............and as their ranks continue to swell..........it's becoming impossible to ignore them. They have little self respect, no work ethic, no skills, no motivation, they are disruptive in school because there is no reason to learn anything, and the government continues to throw money at the problem, while acting like they don't know what created it. I wonder how many of them could have become doctors and scientists, if given the opportunity?

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#113
In reply to #112

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/16/2011 10:12 AM

"I wonder how many of them could have become doctors and scientists, if given the opportunity?" A great example of this, and they are legion, is Dr. Ben Carson who is I believe the head of one of the surgery depts. at Johns-Hopkins Hospital. He has a great book, there's also a movie by that title, called Gifted Hands where he is in that exact scenario. A single mom, low motivation, a lot of TV time, not so good friends, etc. His mom made the difference and changed his life. It's a great story of success that comes when one starts changing the input in life and therefore the actions, habits and consequently the results.

The cycle of dependency is extremely hard to break and there is pain when it happens. It's like digging out a splinter. You get a utility knife out and start digging, there's some pain but when you get the splinter out it can start to heal properly. Getting people off the government dole will be hard but it is necessary in order for people to become contributing members of this great society called the United States.

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#114
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Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/16/2011 10:34 AM

When Clinton announced the welfare to work program, and getting people off the doles. I remember thinking, this is one of the best plans to come out of government in decades. It didn't matter that he was a democrat. For some reason the entire thing just kind of disappeared. I suspect that other members of his party convinced him that doing so would cost them a good sized chunk of their base, and it was shelved.

I'm a little embarrassed for airing my personal laundry on here, but unfortunately, it's real life. People that haven't been exposed to it would assume, (incorrectly), that the government is helping people with these programs. The level of destruction that these programs incur cannot be overstated. It also grows daily.

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#115
In reply to #110

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/16/2011 3:10 PM

you can't have it both ways

freewill or blame someone else

there have always been & always will be temptations

but go ahead perpetuate the partisan diversionary tactics, if it makes you feel superiour

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#116
In reply to #115

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/16/2011 3:26 PM

I'm not sure I know what you mean by "having it both ways"?

We all choose what we will do with; our thought life, opportunities for financial gain, time use, the people environment we choose to put ourselves in, our level of motivation, our work ethic, whether we read good books; of history, biographies of great people, economics, etc. Those things all shape how we approach life, whether it is one of taking charge/responsibility or playing the role of a victim in life that has to be given everything in order just to survive.

It is only partisian because there is primarily one group of people who think people need to be coddled and cared for, and the other group who thinks that people should be able to and want to make it on their own without a lot of interference.

That isn't to say that there aren't times for a government, and it should be the states if anything, to offer a hand up to those who need help temporarily.

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#117
In reply to #116

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/16/2011 4:49 PM

of course you know what I mean by

having it both ways

as usual you change the subject...

personal responsibility or blame

you choose blame & to perpetuate extremism

pining for a better time that never existed

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#118
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Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/16/2011 5:01 PM

No, I don't know what you mean. Please clarify.

"you choose blame & to perpetuate extremism" Who did I blame that doesn't have a track record that supports the statement? Making a statement isn't blaming anyone. It simply is pointing out what has occured in the past with current obervable results.

What is extreme about a society of people taking personal responsibility for their lives?

"pining for a better time that never existed" There was a time when people got by on their own with big government being around to hold their hand and they did better on their own than with things being given to them by some supposedly omnipotent government.

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#119
In reply to #118

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/16/2011 5:11 PM

What is extreme about a society of people taking personal responsibility for their lives?
Nothing
you blame the government, not the people making the bad choices

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#120
In reply to #119

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/16/2011 5:32 PM

The government is partly to blame! Republicans and Democrats; although it is more of a liberal (Democrat) ideology to build big government; have spent hundreds of thousands of billions of dollars (Trillions) in the last 60 years or so and what do we have to show for it? More people on the government dole than ever before. That plan isn't working! It's time to do something different. Maybe people need to be a little hungry in order for them to go out and find a job.

Oh, the forgot, this current administration is anti-business and has done about all it can to kill personal and corporate industry through studpidly dictated regulation and taxes that don't make sense at all. There aren't many jobs for a lot of people, even if they wanted one.

When people lose hope of things getting better they then become apathetic and complacent on their lot in life and are content to have someone else care for them, at the expense of their personal freedom. That is when a lot of bad choices are made.

I am all for personal accountability and personal responsibility. If people make bad choices they should have to live with them, not expect someone else to bail them out. Which the government is more than happy to do because it gives them power.

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#122
In reply to #120

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/16/2011 10:46 PM

oh get real

your can't turn back time...

the 50's are over & weren't all that swell, unless you were a white male

of course in the 50's you would probably be in a union & what was the corporate tax rate?

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#124
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Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/17/2011 7:10 AM

The government has done some good things and they are obviously needed. The government has also overstepped and made some monumental blunders. In many cases, as in the case of cradle to grave welfare, the government has provided the tools through which people make bad decisions. Some examples of good and bad government:

Good: A strong national defense.

Bad: Vietnam (I don't think I need to expound on that one). And more recently, Libya.

Bad: Fighting wars by proxy...........it never seems to turn out well. Every single conflict that is happening around the globe is being fought with weapons that were supplied by either the US or the Soviets................not just supplied, but flooded in.

Good: The interstate highway system.

Bad: Holding individual states hostage to the whims of the federal government through the paying out of, or withholding of, highway funds.

Good: The civil rights act.

Bad: Paying reparations to people that had never been slaves. Taking away any motivation by blanketing them with welfare and entitlement programs. Now that the feds have figured out that this can equal votes, it's been extended to whites and hispanics, which in turn has led to massive voter fraud, a non secure southern border, and millions of illegals in the US. Not to mention, millions that are completely dependent on the government for everything.

Bad: Getting involved in what people eat. Just this morning, I'm reading an article about obesity in the US. Guess who a primary contributor was? The US government. Back in the late 50's and early 60's, (before obesity was a problem), the government began a nutritional program that made carb's the primary food source, by the 70s, the food pyramid was official, and carbohydrates became the base. The high carb diet was implemented everywhere from school lunches to military chow lines. America started getting fatter. Implementing the food pyramid cost 100s of millions. Implementing the new food plate, as well as the cost of obesity is way up in the billions.

The Harvard studies that led to the food pyramid were sponsored largely by Kraft Foods and Frito-Lay. Conflicting studies were squelched.

Good: Obviously, police, fire, ambulance service, etc., are government functions that are needed.

I think the federal government should downsize and get out of the state's business, as per the Constitution. The way I see it, it gives us 50 chances of forming tax codes and a role for government that is healthy and not suffocating. Along with that, I think that individual states should downsize government and allow individual communities to decide what is best for them.

I could go all day long on both good and bad.

Does this not make sense?

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#125
In reply to #124

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/17/2011 8:01 AM

makes sense

sure how do we get to the hard part?

starting at the top

with a sacred cow

National defense:

huge unfunded liability: VA

bloated R/D projects

Unclear or expanded mission

.

Every Department has value & variations on these basic issues, lots of work to do

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#126
In reply to #125

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/17/2011 8:18 AM

Part of it is to get the government to admit when they've made mistakes and rectifying the problem.

Lets start with with the massive and hugely expensive failure that we call the War on Drugs. Knowledge is power and education leads to knowledge. The entire program has been a failure. The government's answer has been to build more prisons to house low level drug offenders..........................now offenders of all stripes are being released due to overcrowding and lack of funds.

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#129
In reply to #126

Re: The Kepler Mission- Antiscience's Next Victim

08/17/2011 8:56 AM

another one with all the elements

maybe there's only 2 elements that highlight the need for reform

unfunded liability

mission creep

that probably won't fly

no one likes to be wrong

I wonder if no fault change is possible at this level?

effective failure analysis & problem resolution, can be a no fault process

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