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kleinbl00  ·  3 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: The Life and Death of Jesse James

In case you ever wondered how small the screenwriting community is, Audrey tried to date me.

After I told her I was engaged.

After she loaned me her laptop for a week to take to Thailand.

In 2007.

She does not take rejection well.

If you enjoy Josh Olson's writing, the one he really made his bones with is "I will not read your fucking script."

I've never met him but, small community that it was, he was not popular.

kleinbl00  ·  91 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Ask Hubski: I just inherited $40,000 - what do I do?

Keep your powder dry. At this point I'd say 100% cash.

If you take away the FAANG stocks, the Dow has been effectively flat for eighteen months... And even with the FAANG stocks, we hit a peak four months ago.

Even the permabulls are going to cash right now. There isn't a lot of upside to be made and there's a lot of downside. Particularly with ETFs. Sell a mutual fund and you get what the basket can be sold for. Sell an ETF and you get what the ETF can be sold for, not its contents. ETFs have an illiquidity problem because they're effectively derivatives, not baskets... And nobody out there in Ma & Pa investorland is pointing that out.

kleinbl00  ·  2 days ago  ·  link  ·  

90 day update to keep myself honest

We'll assume an all-Vanguard portfolio for the sake of balance. "Bond ETFs" would be BND. "International ETFs" would be VEU. "Equity ETFs" would be VTI. At a strike date of June 24 2018, that's 75 of BND, 185 of VEU and 214 of VTI. This combines for a portfolio worth $40,178.

It's been a banner fuckin' span for VTI and pretty rippin' for VEU. As this is 80% of the portfolio, the total RoR at 90 days is almost $10k or 24.5%. BND has lost about $300 or 4%.

Those of us keeping our powder dry are not having nearly the fun of those who are all in.

nowaypablo  ·  91 days ago  ·  link  ·  

kb, $40k for a college student can be the beginning of an IRA, an emergency fund, the (responsible) purchase of their first car, or the opportunity to diversify on all kinds of low-risk investments. Kids look up to you here, don't you think telling them to keep their money in cash because the Dow has been flat for less than two years could be dangerously lazy advice?

kleinbl00  ·  91 days ago  ·  link  ·  

"Dangerously lazy?" Really?

I've been largely in cash for 18 months. Backtestimg my portfolio to what I liquidated demonstrates that I would have made 1.7% if I'd stayed invested. Wanna make money in this market? Keep pumping FAANG even further past the point of sanity or stand ready to buy low.

"Dangerously lazy?" It's somehow lazy to spend ten hours a week parsing financial data and commentary and then share that analysis because what? It's contrary to what Jim Cramer says?

"Dangerously lazy?" Because it's not the consensus of the eTrade crew? Of the dozen analysts whose writings I read, one of them hasn't called the top of the market.

David Rosenberg, one of the few guys to loudly and vociferously call the 2008 crash before it happened (an act that cost him his job) is saying this one could be worse.

But somehow, when I say it, it's "dangerously lazy."

nowaypablo  ·  91 days ago  ·  link  ·  

The right answer to OP's advice is probably "Don't take other peoples' financial advice to make decisions with your own money."

But if you do offer advice, it's certainly more valuable to lay out their options. If I'm not mistaken you wrote a comment a day or two ago about your 5+ IRAs and a list of other non-cash positions. Not to mention the fact that we don't know any financial or other relevant information about OP, except that he's in college and is not in the market for a house.

So if lazy is an unfair adjective, pick your favorite. The point is that you're shying an impressionable stranger away from knowing their options, which includes making their money illiquid if they're not financially responsible.

kleinbl00  ·  91 days ago  ·  link  ·  

What the actual fuck, man.

Spence comes in and says, basically, I've come into money and have selected a basket of diversified ETFs. I say, basically, hang onto your money for the time being and somehow I'm the dangerous one.

- Not the girl saying "spend it on rent."

- Not the guy saying "blow it on bitcoin."

- Not the guy saying "lock it up in CDs."

- Not the guy saying "buy a nice suit."

I'm sorry, but I'ma guess Spence knows his options. One does not paint up a diversified ETF portfolio without at least the sense of knowledge. And you know what? If he's got it as cash in a brokerage fund (that's what "go to cash" means, by the way) he can turn all of it into exactly the portfolio he desires in approximately eleven seconds. For that matter if he set 180-day triggers and targets on the ETFs of his choice he'd find himself owning equities at the price of his choice without even knowing it until he checked his email.

    The right answer to OP's advice is probably "Don't take other peoples' financial advice to make decisions with your own money."

Sure. But if he actually wants that advice, how is "wait" the one suggestion that offends you enough to pick a fight?

Somebody who's picked a percentage of bonds v. equities v. domestic v. foreign has thought about this a lot. I ain't about to upset the apple cart on that one. All I can do is suggest that the timing matters.

And I am honestly flummoxed that this has earned your opprobrium.

WanderingEng  ·  91 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Are there any predictions out there on what industr(ies) are more likely to be impacted? In 2008 it seemed to be centered around the financial industries and housing. Is that overly simplistic? Might we see a similar trend today? Partly I'm just curious, but partly I'm curious if I might find a good deal on a house.

For what it's worth, I'm partly in cash. Every few weeks I move a bit of investment to cash, trying to average myself into reducing risk. Fidelity sends me emails about being overly conservative, and I ignore them. I remember 2008 well. While I was invested in several different types of mutual funds, all went down at roughly the same percentages. In a bear market, being diverse doesn't change much. I also remember how much my retirement was worth. I don't remember exactly, but I think it was somewhere around an eighth of what it is today. The slide then didn't hurt much because my biweekly 401k contributions crushed it when the market recovered. Today it would hurt more.

kleinbl00  ·  91 days ago  ·  link  ·  

    Are there any predictions out there on what industr(ies) are more likely to be impacted?

The current betting pool has (1) convertible bonds (2) ETFs (3) subprime auto loans as the three most likely straws to break the camel's back.

CONVERTIBLES - there's a lot of yield seeking out there right now and people are buying convertibles as if they weren't convertible. The bond market, as always, is huge compared to the stock market and there's over $218b in convertible bonds out there as of March. The US bond market itself is like $35t so it's not like ZOMG all of it. There were $400b in subprime mortgages in 2008 when it started to rip.

ETFs - The problem with ETFs is they're not as liquid as the underlying securities. Not only that they're a derivative - there's an equation that makes up an ETF and the stakeholders have to buy and sell to keep the blend at the algorithm. They're supposed to be advantaged by the arbitrage opportunities but on an average day, $18b in SPY trades hands. On a hot day? Fuggedaboudit. I've got a little biotech I own because they make my daughter's peanut allergy medicine. The day they released news that their clinical trials worked and they pretty much holy shit cured peanut allergy their value went down eight percent because Aetna had a bad day. And Aetna is the healthcare market as far as ETFs are concerned. It's a tiny little stock and it's in 24 different ETFs. So if people decide to sell, the bottom is likely to fall out of ETFs at an even more precipitous rate than the underlying stocks.

SUBPRIME AUTOS - people are defaulting like crazy There's about $40b out there.

FWIW, Rosenberg said recently that recessions happen because the Fed makes them happen. I believe the language he used was "puts a gun to the market's head and pulls the trigger" or something equally florid.

steve  ·  90 days ago  ·  link  ·  


for a half second I thought you were going to recommend a used porsche...

kleinbl00  ·  90 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Not as an investment vehicle, no, despite the fact that it would cost me more to buy my car now than it did last October.

The car market has been stupid for years now and so long as the rich keep getting richer, it'll just get stupider. Had I bought a '97 Carrera 4 in '97, driven it 5k a year, performed all maintenance and sold it last year, I would have made $40k.

Or more.

snoodog  ·  91 days ago  ·  link  ·  

I don’t think investing a lump sum at or near the peak has ever been a good idea. When you are incremeally investing small sums it’s a lot less of a problem then lump sum investing.

kleinbl00  ·  5 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Meet Yusaku Maezawa, SpaceX’s First Moon Voyage Customer

Gilded age of fuckin' everything.

Someone asked me why I was becoming a watchmaker. I said "I've been studying the economic data for three years, probably sixty books in and who knows how many articles and newsletters. I decided that if you have to live in a gilded age, it's best to be a goldsmith."

orbat  ·  4 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Oh yeah, my point was more that it's obvious in space exploration as well

kleinbl00  ·  4 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Yeah, I know. Sad thing is it's been seventeen years since Dennis Tito first went up, and nearly seventy years since Heinlein wrote "The Man who Sold the Moon" so in a way it isn't exactly new. Especially as Musk has called out two Heinlein books by name as inspirations.

Here's the thing. Musk started SpaceX because Roscosmos saw him as a rube and a tourist. He in turn took Roscosmos as a model - SpaceX isn't trying to be the United Launch Alliance, it's trying to be the Korolev Design Bureau. The watchword is cheap. Even "cheap" it's around $5k/kilo to LEO.

Call a human and their life support for a short voyage 100 kilos. That's a half million to LEO, cost. The Saturn V was 140,000 kilos to LEO, 48,000 kilos to TLI. You're at $1.5m to TLI, then, assuming Musk does everything as cheap as possible. The Apollo CSM, on the other hand, was 15,000 kilos with three dudes in it so it's not unreasonable to say it's more like $7.5m.

You could knock that down by a factor of ten and it's out of reach of anybody reasonable. Knock it down by a hundred and it's still more than going around the world on a cruise ship first class. And even then it's loosy-goosy moot shit; our $750k to LEO is a hundredth what NASA paid Roscosmos. And the ISS isn't even in LEO, not really; it's virtually skimming the clouds. When you take that cost-per-kilo and apply it to robots, humans start looking like expensive tourists anyway, the only question left is who foots the bill.

kleinbl00  ·  6 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Dear Hubski, how have the past 2 years been for you people?

LOL we've been catching up with each other the entire time you've been gone! You go first! ;-)

Welcome back!

swedishbadgergirl  ·  6 days ago  ·  link  ·  

I have no idea were to start. 2 years is a long time when you are 20.

But eh, yesterday I openly challenged the unofficial leader of the local county wing of my party. Well, my previous party. I did say that I would leave if the members approved the suggestion that he get a mandate to completely on his own negotiate with the other parties.

6-4 was the result. And that isn't bad for a first try. It was very clear it was him or me, and that it was almost even is something I am very proud of. I argued my position for one and a half hour. With no support.

I didn't win. But I did try.

And I was extremely cool.

Doing this kind of thing is literally a childhood dream of mine.

And the local wing of the party that is next most ideologically similar to mine has accepted me with open arms. Especially as I say that I am a very ideological person.

So doing something even cooler than I thought possible at 14 is a very, very nice feeling.

swedishbadgergirl  ·  6 days ago  ·  link  ·  

I have learned firsthand how the human brain handles traumatic memories. I have gotten better at handling failure. I have realized things about myself, I have gotten a better idea of who I am. I have learned first hand that life is easier when your brain is functioning. I have met some really interesting people, I have met people who have only known me as an adult.

I have changed my plans for life multiple times, I have had a relationship and realized that I most definitely do not like guys. I have gotten better at forgiving myself.

I have a much better life than I did 2 years ago.

wileyfoxes  ·  6 days ago  ·  link  ·  

If you want to understand how are brains work try the book "Righteous Minds". We all react emotionally first then use our intellect (rational side of our brain) to rationalize our response. With time we can alter our emotional response, or manage it first, but it takes understanding how we function to do it well. We also build stories to explain our world, and like all stories/myths, our stories are often inaccurate and always incomplete. I realize this is an attempt to condense an entire book, actually several books, into a paragraph so it is not a very good story I am presenting to you.

Foveaux  ·  6 days ago  ·  link  ·  

I was just listening to a Podcast and Haidt was on it, crazy how that works. Will need to find that book.

swedishbadgergirl  ·  6 days ago  ·  link  ·  

It was a very interesting synopsis, so you presented it well.

kleinbl00  ·  12 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: A brief history of batshit conservative boycotts

How can they go from Lennon to Disco and then rip straight to the NYT without passing through Dixie Chicks?

goobster  ·  11 days ago  ·  link  ·  

And W.A.S.P.?!?! (The band named for them!)

And Kiss?

And everything the PMRC stood for?

And Harley Davidson?

And French Fries?!?

Whew... it must be exhausting being a conservative, and being so angry all the time...

kleinbl00  ·  15 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Country pride: what I learned growing up in rural America

Fuck this entire line of thinking.

    The people I’d grown up with were missing that information. But the liberal people I met in college often were missing another sort of information: what it feels like to pee in a cup to qualify for public benefits to feed your children. A teenager’s frustration when a dilapidated textbook is missing a page and there’s no computer in the house for finding the lesson online. The impossibility of paying a citation for expired auto insurance, itself impossible to pay despite 50 hours a week holding metal frying baskets at KFC.

I am ten years older than the author and it has been obvious since before I could read that cities were where the good stuff was. There's this litany that "it didn't used to suck in the country" and it's abject bullshit. It's always sucked in the country. We're just in a place where the suckitude of the country is more obvious than ever.

And thanks to the electoral college, the choads too stupid to move get to pick the president.

So spare me the sanctimonious "urban elites" bullshit. Getting the fuck out has been the goal of every rural thinker since "the city" was fuckin' Crete.

WanderingEng  ·  15 days ago  ·  link  ·  

The entire piece is written as if her anecdotes and broad views of others can somehow be reconciled into a single conclusion.

    In my experience, there was no evangelism about my family’s Catholic faith in the 1980s and little overt cross-pollination between our church and our politics.

Yeah, well in my experience my family's Catholic faith meant my uncle voted based on two things: abortion and guns.

It goes on and on. "My experience was (blank), and I perceived all (blank) type of people to (blank), thus proving my point."

oyster  ·  15 days ago  ·  link  ·  

That stuff was always around when she was growing up, the people just never felt like anything was under threat. Now they’ve all worked themselves up into a frenzy and bam we get dumb t-shirts. Nobodies racist when the entire towns white. Everybody is just friendly country folks unaware of how terrified they are of anywhere outside their town until the suburbs start creeping in.

bfv  ·  15 days ago  ·  link  ·  

    And thanks to the electoral college, the choads too stupid to move get to pick the president.

... on the other hand, that means that we won't be getting rid of the electoral college any time soon, so letting them have their fantasies of rugged independence and moral rectitude so us degenerates with our functional society and cultural marxist educations can sin in peace is the best chance we have of not being dragged down with them.

kleinbl00  ·  21 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: The Racist, Twisted History of Tipping

That's the problem: the way the food service industry is structured, tips are the only way to make decent money. The rest of the world? It's a wage. But in the United States we'd need to remake an entire industry.

oyster  ·  20 days ago  ·  link  ·  

I think the big thing is yes the industry would have to change but people’s expectations would also need to change. I serve tourist but I also work with servers from other countries who are on working holiday visas, they generally have a lot of catching up to do in terms of meeting people expectations of service in America/Canada. I still laugh about the Russian guy who looked at me like I was psychic for bringing his table another pitcher of water before the first one was empty. That’s why I don’t ever see tipping going away, people’s expectations aren’t going to change. It’s like if you go to a grocery store during a busy hour, you know you kind of screwed yourself and most people understand why it’s slow. They might not be happy but they get that they made a choice to do groceries at 3pm on a Saturday The restaurant industry though everything has to be prompt no matter what. I was never in the weeds or behind as a grocery store cashier because that’s not a concept, it’s just busy. The entire computer system could crash and people still expect prompt service in a restaurant. You basically have to have worked in a restaurant to know when the wait is going to be longer for food by just seeing the place, most other people need to be told and they’re shocked every time.

Canada is probably the best place in the world to be a server honestly. Good wage and comparable tips to what you will find in the states.

kleinbl00  ·  20 days ago  ·  link  ·  

    Good wage and comparable tips to what you will find in the states.

And this, I believe, is why service in Canada is an order of magnitude worse than in the US.

American service is of a spectrum between respectful and obsequious. A talented server at an expensive restaurant in the US can get you to order more drinks than you would have, buy dessert and an appetizer where you wouldn't have, and still tip 25%. Canadian service, on the other hand, is of a spectrum between diffident and respectful. A talented server at an expensive restaurant in Canada will make you confident that they're telling the truth that the monkfish is fresh. I've never had an experience in Canada that was worth more than 15%.

I think it comes down to the fact that Canadian servers can suck balls and still earn a living. American servers without the knack quickly cycle down to the restaurants you don't want to go to.

oyster  ·  20 days ago  ·  link  ·  

It’s true in a lot of places, American’s have higher expectations for service than Canadians. I think it’s that a lot of people get into it thinking it’s easy money and they don’t stand to lose that much by taking a chance since the wage is similar. The best servers are sales people and that’s not for everybody.

kleinbl00  ·  21 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: What Happens When Fandom Doesn't Grow Up?

I'll wager the last discussion was better:

I will, however, make two core observations.

1. Everything old is new again.

Perhaps you have to be of a peculiar age to recognize this, but gobsmacking nostalgia for an era 30 years back was the driving creative force of the '80s, too. Back to the Future. California Raisins. Fuckin' Chevy Bel Airs on every piece of advertising known to man. Goonies. The 'boomers were in their 30s and 40s back in the '80s and as the principle tastemakers with buying power, what they wanted ruled and what they wanted was their fucking childhoods. And the rest of us had to suck it up.

In the '80s they resurrected the '50s. In the '10s we're resurrecting the '80s. That's because the kids of the 'boomers have all the money now. They're the target of the marketing. This isn't novel. This isn't new. You sell what the public wants and what the public wants is their childhood.

2. Filmed entertainment is end-stage.

The age of the television viewing audience goes up a year every year and has done since 2005. "the Demo" (18-35) is no longer watching your fucking programming. It's also much more expensive than it has ever been before - that twerp from fuckin' Big Bang Theory turned down fitty.million.dollas for one more season to never again have to play that twerp from Big Bang Theory. The Help, a tiny movie starring no one with zero special effects, cost half as much as Star Wars adjusted for inflation. A summer blockbuster these days costs as much as an ocean liner. And oh god if that movie tanks because you changed the canon you'll never work again. And by "you" I mean "every single creative force involved with the project."

Quoth Sayres Law, "academic disputes are the most bitter because the stakes are so low." There's nothing quite like a bored, disempowered individual with an opinion and considering that nobody is making anything new they have every reason to bitch about what shit the rehashed stuff is. And notably absent from the discussion provided by the Hollywood Reporter, it's shit. I mean, it's fucking ghastly shit. I've been trying to get through The Last Jedi on phone, laptop, chromecast, fuckin' airplane for a week now. It's fucking terrible. It makes me long for Jar Jar. I mean, here we are, invoking Terence Malick in a movie directed by the guy who couldn't pull off World War Z. Seriously. Shut the fuck up and address your mediocrity before you try to pin it on someone else.

You know why everyone is mad about Luke Skywalker? Because the last time we saw him, he ruled. Now? Now he sucks in a universe that sucks brought to us by people who suck. And it doesn't suck because it's different, it sucks because it's objectively bad.

Not even George Lucas at his absolute Jar Jar worst would drop fuckin' unguided bombs in zero gravity.

tacocat  ·  20 days ago  ·  link  ·  

I really like The Last Jedi. It's not without problems but the most vocal opponents of it point at problems that aren't there. They're dudes who think it's impossible to be misogynists because their idea of misogyny is based on the guys who picked on them for being nerds before geek culture became bankable. A not insignificant portion seems to not understand Star Wars but I'm gonna have to digress from that claim because I don't want to dig through fanboy Twitter to find examples.

I end up maybe too aware of toxic fanfom due to my politics and media interests. Also I accidentally created a Twitter account that's mostly hyperbolic rage fuel and I can't figure out how to fix it even after unfollowing anyone with #resist on their bio. Did you know there's a comicsgate a la gamergate? It started with milkshakes. Actually it started because idiots are protecting their boys club and don't seem to understand that female Thor or black girl Iron Man are marketing stunts and the status quo ALWAYS returns in comic books. Marvel and DC are in the business of selling things and if they can sell things to people who aren't white men then they can sell more things. But the shitlords think it's some NWO conspiracy from the SJWs. Who as far as I can tell are usually in their twenties.

Basically I know too much about a segment of trolls and I don't like knowing it

kleinbl00  ·  20 days ago  ·  link  ·  

STAR WARS: Robots escape the Empire in search of an ancient ally. They find him and with him, a young warrior in training. The warrior and the ally make it off planet (barely) but end up at a world-killing base. The warrior escapes the base when the ally sacrifices himself and sets an example that the warrior uses to rally the rebels and destroy the base.

THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK: The rebels have been found on an icy planet. They escape after a battle but the warrior diverts to complete his training. While there he learns of his legacy. Meanwhile the rebels escape through an asteroid field to end up at an ally's base only to be betrayed. The empire sets a trap, the warrior shows up and has an epic battle (and his legacy). He escapes, barely, with the help of his friends.

RETURN OF THE JEDI: The rebels rally to save a friend. The warrior returns to complete his training only to discover that his master is dying. The rebels must destroy another world-killer with the help of indigenous people and the warrior must save his legacy, his life and the rebels.

THE LAST JEDI: A new warrior must be trained by the master, who refuses to do it. The rebels try to take out the empire but they suck. They're on the run but the empire can't quite catch them. So some of them escape to the Casino Planet where they're captured. But they get away on horseback. Where they're rescued by a thief. Who actually turns them in. Meanwhile the rebels are still incongruously on the run. There's a bad warrior and a good warrior and they snapchat a few times. Then they get together and kill the emperor but aren't friends and one of them gets away for some reason. There are wisecracks and puffins that look like BatBoy. Also the Dark Side of the Force lives in a hole that looks disconcertingly like a gaping asshole.

I will not mock you for liking The Last Jedi but you can't argue that it's objectively on par with the original trilogy. The movies could be cheap Hong Kong martial arts films and everything after the first two-three movies would still be pale imitations. This is a problem, as I said, that Hollywood is not addressing: movies suck now. Pick your best modern superhero movie (a genre not known for quality) and compare it to Superman 2. It's been downhill for a while now, but it's really hard to deny.

Not that everyone isn't trying.

I'm aware of ComicsGate. I also witnessed the chairman of DC comics say "by our best guess there are 200,000 comics readers in the United States. Green Lantern has an audience of maybe 7 million. If those 200,000 comics readers object to something we do with Green Lantern, that's a price we'll happily pay."

And that was ten years ago.

Comics readers are the coal miners of entertainment. They're completely fucking irrelevant to every single aspect of the rest of the industry yet whenever they open their pie holes to whinge about the Human Torch being black we're all required to care for some fucking reason. Comic Book Sunday is every comic book fan in Los Angeles, showing up to hang out with every comic book industry guy in Los Angeles, and on any given Sunday there's like 50 people there.

Yeah, sure. There's 24 million "comic book fans" in the United States. If only 50 people can show up for free comics out of a city of 20 million, that number is abject bullshit.

bfv  ·  20 days ago  ·  link  ·  

I'd much rather no one gave a shit about us. Comics were a lot more fun when they weren't prototypes for movies, and comic conventions were more fun when they were about comics.

Also get off my lawn.

francopoli  ·  20 days ago  ·  link  ·  

The Bazinga Effect gets most of the blame. About 2005-2006 is when the shit really came to a head. ComicCon went to pot when actors discovered cosplay was a way to get noticed and build a fan base.

Video games now make more money that movies and music combined. That type of money attracts vermin of all stripes and pushes out the people who made the fandom in the first place.

This image floats around the chan boards and is sort of fits. Remove the incel crap language and it follows a few of the fandoms I've been in.

kleinbl00  ·  19 days ago  ·  link  ·  

I'm having a hard time with this.

EC-era comics had a bigger audience than TV and radio combined. Fuckin' everyone was reading comics. Then in the '50s things got stupid and the comics industry knuckled the fuck under and became the shit landscape of Archie and Batgirl we all know and despise. Frank Miller and Alan Moore dragged that shit out of the gutter but the distance between Miller's Dark Knight and gravel-voiced Michael Keaton and Kim Basinger is three goddamn years and if you were ten when Jack Nicholson played The Joker you're fuckin' 41 now. Fuckin' 81 editions of those four comics. You don't get to pretend you're lone nerds keeping the flame of fandom alight when the fuckin' New York Times reviews your goddamn comic.

Comics started incredibly popular. By the time Comics went through their bullshit "I'm so edgy" renaissance they'd been subject to congressional hearings. ComicCon? Fuck off, George Lucas premiered his trailer for Star Wars there in '76.

George Reeves is 60 years dead. This idea that comics were ever some pure thing untouched by the creeping tendrils of commercialism is offensively elitist and the fact that Chanistan thinks that somehow shit was cooler on vinyl makes me further question what the fuck you get out of Chanistan.

bfv  ·  19 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Frank Miller didn't do anything Dennis O'Neil hadn't done with Batman and Green Arrow a decade before. O'Neil was even his editor on Daredevil, where he started writing and made his reputation. Dark Knight happened because Dick Giordano wanted a Batman comic to wash the Adam West off the perception of Batman and bring it closer to what they'd been doing for years, and Frank Miller was available. The 'bullshit "I'm so edgy" renaissance' was like the Renaissance in the sense that it was 80% hype and 20% changes that had started long before anyone declared a rebirth.

kleinbl00  ·  19 days ago  ·  link  ·  

...see, and I remember comics from my cousins from the late '60s and early '70s that were every bit as edgy as the goddamn Dark Knight.

But I don't even think those comics were worth anything then or now because nobody gave a fuck.

tacocat  ·  20 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Eh— I don't want to argue my opinion about TLJ because I need to watch it again. I will say that legitimate criticism of it is drown out by assholes who are offended by the sociopolitical implications of Laura Dern's hair color

kleinbl00  ·  20 days ago  ·  link  ·  

The point that the legitimate criticism is drowned out by the "ZOMG FAT ASIAN WOMEN" criticism is well-taken.

But then, if you're a "star wars fan" in this day and age you're basically a simp easily manipulated by commercialism anyway so you might as well be picking sides in the Bud Bowl.

b_b  ·  20 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Bud Dry or death

tacocat  ·  20 days ago  ·  link  ·  

The media is sleeping on Tartar Control Bud this year

kleinbl00  ·  22 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Microwave Weapons Are Prime Suspect in Ills of U.S. Embassy Workers

It's interesting. You go to a maser pointed at people's heads. I go to magniplanar listening devices.

The Great Seal Bug was 3' across back in '45. They never did figure out all the gack in the US Embassy in Moscow. What I know is that if you type in "planar microwave emitter array" into Google Images you see a bunch of SEM graphs.

Imagine this: you've got some passive surveillance devices that are acoustic cavities that modulate when excited by microwave energy. You've got them tuned such that you can literally stick them into the wall like a thumbtack and have a listening device in a room. Only problem is, the gain is dependent on a bunch of correct collimation: your microwave emitter has to be just so. Your bug has to be just so. And if you're FSB, you're probably good at this.

But if you're Cuba, you jack the shit out of your emitter gain.

And people's brains start to cook.

am_Unition  ·  22 days ago  ·  link  ·  

That certainly sounds much more plausible. Perhaps their level of gain is somewhere between enough microwave intensity (and flux) that a human body would have a noticeable sensation of heating, vs. enough microwave intensity and flux to seriously damage the brain. Something tells me that it's not a particularly well-characterized parameter space, certainly at least not in the public record.

Random thoughts because this is fun: To effectively transmit something of a given wavelength, you need something very near the size of the wavelength (I know you know, 'bl00, this is for posterity). So if they targeted the second harmonic of brain resonance, they could get to masin' with using something ~2.5 cm for an antenna half of the wavelength. Small enough to hide, but there might still be issues related to power dissipation. It would be interesting to measure a sample of ceiling, wall, and floor material and check the skin depth across the microwave range. Or maybe they've found a polarization technique that is especially suited for brain scrambling?

Regardless, I'll never be a diplomat anyway.

kleinbl00  ·  21 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Let's continue the thought experiment. Wifi is 2.4gHz and around 100mW. Suppose they were boosting that at 10GHz to steal it? Cell phones are in the watt range; the shear amount of RFI you've got spitting around is going to make monitoring tough. And what if you PWM your wave and duty cycle it under 50%? If you're building hysteresis into your passive device, you're good to go and the average sweep probably won't pick it up.

And you can jack it.

It's really the cavity volume that will give you your resonance. The size is whatever. 2.5cm diameter? Fine, I'll make something the thickness of a playing card, feather the edges and put it under the paint at the tape and mud stage. I can hide an inch anywhere especially if I don't have to feed it power or pull off signal.

If the duty cycle is under 100%, living tissue may easily act differently than anything else. And your own testing might not even reveal what those effects are unless you bathe convicts in it for a year at a time.

kleinbl00  ·  28 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Ben Miller: The Student Debt Problem Is Worse Than We Imagined

There are issues here not even touched on.

1) Student loan debt is guaranteed. If you have a public loan, and I service it, and you default, the government pays me the value of the loan. Then the government gets to send you to collections. Which means they sell the debt to a private party for ten cents on the dollar so that the private party can hound you forever.

2) Student loan debt is poorly managed. There are three companies that handle federal student loans and they make the mortgage industry ca. Countrywide look like the Gnomes of Zurich. Paperwork is poorly handled. Notices are lost. Continuity is non-existent. The goal is to make students miss payments which pushes back amnesty programs.

3) Amnesty programs are ignored. Essential profession amnesty is supposed to be granted after 120 payments. The first round of students became eligible about 18 months ago. Something like 10,000 should be eligible. Less than 200 have been granted forgiveness.

4) Private loan companies are competing for the debt. In 2011 there were $40b in private student loans. In 2018 there's $125b.

5) Boomers hold more student loan debt than millennials or GenY.. That'd be parents underwriting their kids' student loans. Which can't be disbursed short of death.

I mean, yeah. The numbers suck. But if those were mortgages the guys who wrote the mortgages would take a bath, so would their investors, so would their creditors and we go back to zero. They're student loans which means the government has to pay them all AND everybody who can't pay has their financial health ruined for a decade or more.

...ya think that's gonna be a drag on the economy?

kleinbl00  ·  32 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Paul Manafort Convicted in Fraud Trial

I cannot recall a public appearance made by that woman that has not been a net negative for the president.

The Occam's Razor on Melania Trump is she's a vindictive Mean Girl subtexting the shit out of her husband for ruining her comfy life.

ThurberMingus  ·  32 days ago  ·  link  ·  

    Barack and I were raised with so many of the same values / My parents impressed on me the values...

    That is a lesson that I continue to pass on to our son / Barack and I ... our children...

Too fun to overanalyze

Yay Crazy Rich Asians. Yay mass-market acceptance. Yay minority representation. For the record, on the indie side we've long since figured out how to get into festivals: have a minority star. Sci fi film starring a white guy? You're in sci fi festivals. Sci fi film starring an asian? you're in every asian film festival. I know a girl who got into every GLBT festival there was with a 6fps 8min stop-motion short about toothpicks because she implied that the two toothpicks were lesbians.

But that doesn't get them bought.

Crazy Rich Asians did $35m over the weekend. Woot woot! Is that domestic or foreign? Well, it's both... because it didn't play enough screens overseas to be counted individually. That's about on par with any given Tyler Perry film which also don't play foreign. Straight Outta Compton? 20% of its haul is foreign, which is impressive, considering it's about a bunch of black people being black in the land of blackness. How 'bout The Meg, a forgettable movie about a giant shark, that Crazy Rich Asians unseated?

Yeah. $100m in China alone.

Americans see "crazy rich asians" but "asians" see actual nationalities. Buddy of mine runs with a bunch of Koreans since college and every conversation I ever participated in was about "you know Joe? From Korea? No, not that Joe he's from Laos. He's dating Trudy who's from Vietnam. We're all going to go see a movie with Bob who's from Taiwan, I think." Makes sense; I'm neither Canadian nor Mexican. Hell, I'd be offended if you thought I was a Texan and we use the same money and language. But from a cinematic standpoint it makes the casting of "asian" actors a non-starter for foreign markets.

As a movie goer i really wanna see everybody in every movie. But I also know Hasbro didn't put out a Rey action figure until the Internet lost their minds and she's white AF.

Audience member? Bring on the minorities. Executive whose continued livelihood depends upon getting the fine citizens of Guangzhou to show up Friday night? It's gonna be Jason Fucking Statham all the way.

veen  ·  33 days ago  ·  link  ·  

    Americans see "crazy rich asians" but "asians" see actual nationalities.

Good point, and I don't think it's any differrent for other continents - nobody gets excited because a movie features a European, although a Hollywood movie will probably do well here if it has a Dutch main character.

I think it's telling that a bunch of newer TV series have a far more diverse cast than similarly new shows a decade ago. It's not unreasonable to assume the differences in the economics of those two types of media has sped up minority representation.

kleinbl00  ·  36 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Beer-boiled hotdogs

It's volunteer beer? That makes more sense.

kleinbl00  ·  36 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Beer-boiled hotdogs

Sophomore year our town gained an Albertson's. Got a flyer in the mail. Case of Hamm's Lite Ice. $5.99 a case. Fuck yeah. Get there. Each case has a $4 mail-in rebate coupon. $2/case beer.

Open a can. Spit it out. Roommates have some. Spit it out. Try cooking chili in it. Renders the beef inedible. Sent in the coupons, though. Jesus. $2/case beer.

Weeks pass. Out of mouthwash. Roommate 1 drank it all. More weeks pass. Roommate 2 gets drunk on Kahlua, opens a Hamm's and becomes outraged that we still had "trick beer" in the house. More weeks pass. Months pass. School ends. I move. Get a "notify sender of new address" with an $8 check from Hamm's. Realize we never got rid of the beer. Email Roommate 1, envisioning it lurking under the sink to surprise and terrify a new generation of sophomores.

"It took some doing, but I finally drank it all," he says. "Especially once you hid your mouthwash."


I don't cook with beer and I don't buy Hamm's. I've never liked hot dogs but I've discovered that if I grill them to the point where the outer casing delaminates and turns blackish they aren't so terrible.

mk  ·  36 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Yeah the existence of Hamm's defies logic. Thing is, we are at an Airbnb on Lake Huron, and someone left the beach house fridge full of them. It was either the Hamm's or $2/bottle double IPAs. I don't think hops would benefit the dogs either.

The dogs were complimented all around.

kleinbl00  ·  36 days ago  ·  link  ·  

It's volunteer beer? That makes more sense.

Quatrarius  ·  36 days ago  ·  link  ·  

all dags, no matter how shitty, benefit greatly from being burn'd until blackened and crunchy on the outside

it's always been my position that hot dogs are just shitty sausages that are also appealing in some ways by their nature as shitty sausages so it ent worth the effort of trying to like them if you don't

kleinbl00  ·  36 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Hot dogs are stick bologna

tacocat  ·  36 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Real bologna kinda is stick bologna too. Or log bologna at least.

As a person descended from hot dog and sausage loving people I'm of the opinion that you gotta toss a bunch of extra shit on hot dogs to endure them. I probably have too many unimportant opinions about hot dogs. I blame Chicago.

kleinbl00  ·  36 days ago  ·  link  ·  

At some point in the '90s Seattle street vendors switched over to grilled kielbasa on a grilled roll with grilled onions and cream cheese. I think that effectively ended hot dogs in the pacific northwest.

Not that I was ever a hot dog person before but hot dogs are to sausages what Velveeta is to Beecher's.

kleinbl00  ·  40 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Manafort gives up.

Just because he doesn't put up a defense doesn't mean his defense team is giving up. It simply means that they think that they will suffer more damage on cross than they will gain advantage on direct.

The prosecution must prove guilt. The defense doesn't need to prove innocence. If their best strategy is to prove reasonable doubt through cross-examining prosecution witnesses only, they won't present a defense at all.

If Manafort were my client I wouldn't want him on the stand. Would you?

tacocat  ·  40 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Rick Gates said under oath that they committed crimes together. The defense lost right there.

If Manafort were my client I'd say, "Get the fuck out of here. You're not going to be my client," all the while sticking my fingers in my ears until he left my layering room forever

b_b  ·  40 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Yeah but from the defense's POV Rick Gates is an admitted liar who is lying again to try to get less jail time for himself, because the feds had him dead to rights. I think they're taking the only tack they can, because no oligarch is going to get on the stand and say that Manafort is an awesome dude who should get a Medal of Freedom.

Edit: Also if you were Manafort's lawyer you'd be making $1500/hr so you'd go to great lengths to make your legal advice sessions as long as possible.

kleinbl00  ·  40 days ago  ·  link  ·  

I think you're right. I hope you're right.

I wonder where in the line of creditors Manafort's lawyers lie. I doubt they took the case out of altruism or prestige.

tacocat  ·  40 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Even if I'm right it doesn't matter. The dark wizard lizard people have control. I can only refer to them as lizard wizards to vainly protest while hoping some FBI dude I would have hated like ten years ago can outsmart them all singlehandedly

kleinbl00  ·  40 days ago  ·  link  ·  

I don't know about you, but my threshold of hatred was a lot lower ten years ago.

tacocat  ·  40 days ago  ·  link  ·  

My threshold of, "You can't do this shit!" was a lot higher. Even after ten years of Bush. It's now climbed to (sank to? I'm confused. Roll with me.) remarkable levels. My dream of being a professional smartass artist is dead and I may have to do a damn thing in its place.

b_b  ·  40 days ago  ·  link  ·  

100% sure it's a cash only situation. Are you that dumb? Do you think a mob lawyer is?

kleinbl00  ·  40 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Seven world trade center. Yeah I reckon they know better than I do.

francopoli  ·  40 days ago  ·  link  ·  

That is a common strategy in defense cases. Keep your client's mouth SHUT and tell him to sit there, pay attention and look pretty and 'innocent' if there is such a look.

Do what you can to make the prosecution slip up and attack credibility of the other side, hang the jury and walk.

    If Manafort were my client I wouldn't want him on the stand. Would you?

I'd not want him talking period. Not to the news, not online, not even to his family.