Registered bored user

wibble4321 wrote:
This is one of the areas where non-Americans get confused and then see the light about the US.  From the outside we think of America, the USA, as a country.  To us a country is a single unified 'thing' that operates the same.

It is quite the oddity to us (non-Americans) to realise that it (the USA) really is a federation of independently governed territories and that shipping or purchasing something from California to deliver in Florida is not a slam dunk.  Perhaps what should happen is something like Europe has applied for its sales taxes?

In Europe you register for sales tax if your sales in that country exceed x.

If you ship goods over a value of y to another county (y is set by that country) then you must register and collect sales tax for that (y) country at their rate.  Otherwise sales tax is at your local (x) country rate.

Last, as soon as I base goods in country y - i.e. sales are fulfilled locally from a warehouse in (y), I must collect and pay y taxes on every sale made in (y).
wibble4321 wrote:
LOGICIAN (INTP-A)  Apparently I'm quite rare. :)

63% Introverted
71% Intuitive
81% Thinking
79% Prospecting
71% Assertive

I know these are very flawed tests, but they can still be fun and shine lights on aspects you might not have acknowledged before.
wibble4321 wrote:
So far thoroughly enjoying it
wibble4321 wrote:
punko Very true.  Based on my browser history if the Internet gave me what I needed it would probably be therapy.
wibble4321 wrote:
The internet was supposed to bring people together.  It was supposed to be a learning tool.  It was supposed to transcend culture and promote understanding.  What it has actually done is allow people to wallow in pools of confirmation bias and reduced people's interest in challenging their own preconceptions.  Search engines answer the questions we ask , they do not offer reasoned balanced arguments.  You used to have to read a book and absorb the whole story.  Now you can just ask what happened without any of the background or context. 
wibble4321 wrote:
Ok, now I'm going to head into risky territory.  The problem is with the people, not the weapons.  It isn't that knives are easier to obtain, it is that people are too willing to use them.

At the risk of generalising and possibly being labelled racist:

Immigration from countries where a lower value is placed on life has fuelled this.  It began with 'Yardie' culture from the West Indies and Jamaica and later Africa, Eastern Europe and certain Asian sub-continental areas.  It is a culture where all a person has is 'respect' and that respect is enforced with a fast escalation to extreme and disproportionate violence.

To be fair, it existed before.  You wouldn't walk into an East London pub and start insulting the local boys there and expect to walk out with all your teeth but that was a basic common sense issue.  Today, you could brush past a chap on the high street, shout at them for doing something stupid on the road or even just ask them to be quiet and run a risk of a severe beating, knifing or worse.  The 'never back down, did you disrespect me' attitude has spread to impoverished underprivileged areas all over the country because those that live their have to stand up and live in that world.  Violence begets violence and weakness is vulnerability.

This culture somehow needs to be wound back. We need to stop poor people killing each other (and everyone else in the crossfire) because of misunderstood 'respect' or 'honour'.  
wibble4321 wrote:
mrteatime really?  How come in the 1960s there were almost half the number of police per head that there are now?  1961 1 officer per 807 people, now 1 per 462 people.  Yes there are fewer offices than a few years ago, but the real problem is a vast, huge increase in crime.  Society is changing, it is becoming more lawless and that is a social issue not a policing issue.  We need fewer criminals not more police.

We need a return to what I would describe as old-fashioned or traditional values.  People brought up to respect their elders, other people and themselves.  Where crime isn't socially acceptable.   Where success doesn't mean having the 'baddest' reputation.  Foreign culture and values have brought down our inner cities to slum levels - they are lawless and feral.  I don't know how to fix it but creating an us vs. them of police vs. everyone else isn't going to be the answer. 
wibble4321 wrote:
Remember, offence is taken, not given.  It is up to you how you react to the world as you see it.  If you don't like something, go create something alternative, rather than trying to tear down something established.  Give people an alternative and let them choose.
wibble4321 wrote:
skeeter01 Life wants to be.  In the wild that squirrel wouldn't be moping around trying to drown itself or asking a mate to bash it over the head with a rock.  It would be trying to survive any way it could.  It would adapt, or die naturally, but it would try to survive if it could in any way.
wibble4321 wrote:
Not fooling anyone yet.  Too much emphasis on pointless details (like the wisps of hair that a normal person would have been irritated by and swept back) and too little on the shape and animation of the mouth, the proportions and shoulder movements with the arms (shoulders are not a fixed pivot , the whole shoulder structure moves with the arm)

that being said, it is still very impressive.
wibble4321 wrote:
I recall my friends agreed it was hilarious that I would replace the mouse ball in a colleague's mouse with a giant M&M.

On a separate occasion during an office move we were allocated up to 10 boxes to pack our stuff in to be moved.  The same colleague was very vocal about the fact that he had got everything into just one box and left early to go the bar.  Unfortunately for him he left his pre-printed labels in the top of his packing box.

We dutifully packed him a further 9 boxes full of any old crap we could find around the office, including full rubbish bins, broken umbrellas and out of date manuals and books, paper recycling - the lot.

Needless to say on Monday he arrived at work confident of a quick unpack and was rather dismayed to be confronted with a wall of 10 shipping cartons waiting at his desk...
wibble4321 wrote:
daegog I used to be like you.  I learned the key to a fatty cut is heat.  You need to nuke the crap out of the outside of a steak really, really fast and leave the inside as rare as possible.  The fat will melt at a lower temperature than the meat cooks and the seared fat on the outside just turns into nectar.  Having grown up in the UK I had to leave the country to discover good (properly cooked) steak.  I also keep a chef's blowtorch handy to really crisp that fat.  Yum! 
wibble4321 wrote:
It's cheating, but I guess I once spent around $3,500-$4,000 or so on a meal.  The slightly shorter version of the storey was that I was supposed to be flying to San Jose for a tech conference for work from Asia.  Colleagues were due to meet me from Europe and NY.  Hotels were booked up, so I ended up having to book a hotel in SF and rent a car after my business class United flight.

I checked into the hotel, with my rented car in their car park and called my US counterpart to see where everyone was on my rented US cell phone - to be told that the conference was cancelled.  No one was coming.  I got myself booked onto the next flight back, went shopping then ate a top steak supper with a very expensive bottle of red wine.  The meal itself was about $350 I guess, way above guidelines but I was pretty pissed off.  After all the other costs no one at work challenged the cost of the meal or wine.
wibble4321 wrote:
Because I was quite surprised when Richard Curtis and Ben Elton wrote one of the made-up words my friends and I used into Blackadder Goes Forth :)
wibble4321 wrote:
monkwarrior Love is just a chemical compound the brain utilises to keep people together long enough to make and bring a child into the world.  The rest is dogma, tradition and guilt in equal measures overlaid with a syrup of fear of being alone.
wibble4321 wrote:
Most religions do one thing only.  Place one group of people above another.  It should come as no surprise that through history religion is connected to long term dynastic behaviours that accumulated both wealth and power typically at the expense of the common people.  Religion overthrew other leaders and tyrants to install their own power system.  They cooperated and coexisted with others when it suited them.

Religion is just politics but utilising superstition and fear of the unknown.  At it's purist it is about being good and looking after one another - but you don't have to be religious to be nice.  I'm an atheist but I still know that murder, theft and such is bad.  Caring for those that have less, or that are in need is good.  Strange how most religions say something like 'this is the only religion, all the others are wrong.  Follow them and suffer the consequences'....
wibble4321 wrote:
#5 looks like Ralph Dibny/Elongated Man from Flash.
wibble4321 wrote:
There are upsides to buffets though (all you can eat or otherwise).  They are good if you would like a little bit of several dishes.  A taste of this and that that you couldn't order a la carte because you'd get to much food and it would cost a fortune.
wibble4321 wrote:
Buffet restaurants failed because a basic assumption was that not everyone in a family could eat like a competitor at a Nathan's hot dog contest.  Sure Dad or the teenage son might pack away a few extra servings of chicken but on average it would all work out.

Now the entire family turns up with the kids eating more than the average 1980's adult would and Mum and Dad getting their weekly exercise heading back up to the buffet so often they plan their visits to get seats nearer the counter to cut down on unnecessary walking distance...
wibble4321 wrote:
emmettyville That is very true, but given a choice I'd rather the nuts didn't have access to AR15s and other high powered rifles to pick me off at will from a hotel window or a clock tower.

People can hunt and kill food with a shotgun, they can defend themselves with shotguns.  What they will have a lot more trouble doing is killing a large number of defenceless people at range.
wibble4321 wrote:
Gerry1of1 She has one arm and three knees?  I'm trying to work out if that is a bad thing or not.
wibble4321 wrote:
emmettyville Seriously?  I don't think deliberately setting bush fires or torching a nursing home where you work is relevant to guns as no guns were used and no gun could have prevented it.  I don't think even the NRA are going to try and market guns as effective at putting out fires.

The remainder of 'mass killings' (if we are going by wikipedia) didn't break double digits and typically involved parents killing their kids.  Again, unless we are going to arm kids and expect them to shoot their mother I don't think guns would have helped.

The only possible argument could be for the Melbourne car attack, but given that even well trained marksmen sometimes miss (Sydney siege innocent shot accidentally by police) I wonder how many more would have died if passers by were praying the car with bullets.

The fact remains that mass killings and gun violence are way down since gun laws were enacted in Australia.
wibble4321 wrote:
Hmm, so I'm atheist, so I comment on this from the outside.  I also only watched the first 51 seconds of the video so I reckon that makes me an expert.

With that being said, I believe the entire premise of God's creation of man, and what separated him from the beasts and the angels, was free will.  God couldn't have created man and then ruled with an iron hand or removed the ability for man to do wrong.  As I see it religion is just fine as a guiding principle providing you don't take it too far or use it selectively.  I think, as with all doctrines, it needs to be used in context with current times and situations.

The problem is when bad people, greedy people, weak people and mad people adopt religion to fit their view of how the world should be.  Very few of the most extreme religious figures actually adhere to all aspects of their given faith, but tend to selectively focus on certain aspects to the detriment of others.  Religion used as a tool to elevate one person or people above another is flawed.  Most religions fundamentally and broadly state that you should love thy neighbour and be kind to strangers and not do bad things.

What really goes wrong is when religion becomes politics.  Crusades, Inquisitions, holy wars are all in reality just political distractions to distract, maintain, expand or solidify political power.  Religion unfortunately can generate a sense of righteousness and this in turn can lead to entitlement and a feeling of superiority over others.

None of these things are particularly desirable conditions and tend to lead to conflict and discord.  Pitting your followers against another group of people creates an artificial sense of 'us' and by definition for there to be an 'us' there must be a 'them'.  If there is a 'them' then they are different, outside and wrong.

This is where misuse of religion steers us into trouble - it ceases to be about walking down the street and caring for those that have less than you, respecting your neighbours and being 'morally responsible' (none of which you actually need to be religious to do by the way).  It becomes a geopolitical tool wielded by nation states to highlight differences in culture and label them right or wrong.  Religion should be personal, it should be between you and your god.  It should be about how you live your life, not about how other lead theirs.
wibble4321 wrote:
Glad you are back little furry one.  Seems like there is still a little bit of a sorting out to do regarding mods and banning/verification so in the mean time, just ignore any residual negativity and rest back on the number of decent folks who have your back.

Let fancy and the mods play whack-a-mole (moles are okay to whack right?) with the posts and just ignore it if you can!
wibble4321 wrote:
I'm really not sure about this statistic.  I'm pretty prolific but I don't think I've even *ahem* come close to wounding a German, let alone killing one while masturbating.