Activity from Malor

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Taibbi held a gun to my head, er, I mean...
jsavimbi: Little over a year ago I worked for a company designing a foreign exchange trading platform. My advice to you is to not get into Fx trading. If the trader, brokers, liquidity providers or scalpers don't fuck you, the bank will. And they often go first.

From a slightly different angle: Forex trading is a zero-sum endeavor. For every winner, there is a loser. No wealth is created in forex. The jello just gets moved around the plate.… [more]
posted to MetaFilter by Malor at 10:07 AM on April 26, 2013
Ironmouth: This needs to be investigated. Taibbi is still an idiot. There are plenty of good analyses of the problem without his ridiculous style and going-too-far conclusion making.

Taibbi is just about the only guy out there who actually understands what's going on, and is willing to digest it for financial noobs, instead of using his knowledge to make himself rich.

In this area, he is more right, more often, than any other mainstream source I know.
posted to MetaFilter by Malor at 10:09 AM on April 26, 2013
If LIBOR is obviously gamed, why would people continue to participate?

Because the banks make the rules, because they create the money. So you have to do what they tell you.

Further, they can use that created money to buy any law they want.

What's a little drug money laundering? The government was more than happy to take a skim of the take.
posted to MetaFilter by Malor at 11:10 AM on April 26, 2013
Aren't banks required to report their assets and obligations?

Most of the big banks are insolvent. They're not worth anywhere near what they claim; most of the assets they hold are debt instruments and credit swaps that they're basically allowed to value at whatever figure they like.

Well, they like being optimistic. Really, really optimistic.

This is why the Fed has had to print all those trillions,… [more]
posted to MetaFilter by Malor at 11:28 AM on April 26, 2013
So what would happen if those banks simply went poof?

A huge deflationary crash, with a desperate scramble for cash. Millions, worldwide, would probably die, including at least some in the US.

That's really bad, but it will be even worse if we don't get the banking sector under control. This whole funny money business is literally killing us, just very slowly.
posted to MetaFilter by Malor at 11:34 AM on April 26, 2013
lupus_yonderboy: You get hit by your health care - they just jacked the asthma medication I use to $190, something you can get offshore for $30, and it's in a shitty little inhaler that doesn't even indicate how much you've consumed but they raised the price "because they can".

Rather, they raised the price because there are more and more and more dollars chasing medical resources, and they can still sell all their inhalers at a higher price.… [more]
posted to MetaFilter by Malor at 1:22 PM on April 26, 2013
And note that one deal failing can impact another deal, and then another, and then another -- that whole market could blow up in hours. As I understand, it just about did, in 2008.
posted to MetaFilter by Malor at 1:33 PM on April 26, 2013
That is literally precisely not what inflation is. Companies raising prices to make more money from "more and more and more dollars chasing medical resources" is in no way, shape, or form inflation.

It absolutely is. Prices going up because of too much money being in existence is exactly what inflation is.

When you have too many dollars chasing too few goods, prices go up. That's inflation.
posted to MetaFilter by Malor at 1:41 PM on April 26, 2013

There's Amazonian and Then There's...
Goddamn -- watch the video linked in Kuchera's piece.

How can anyone think that's a good idea? The breasts on that sorceress are so huge, and jiggle to such extreme degrees, that they look like autonomous things that have been somehow attached to her, scary cancerous growths that move of their own will.

How does anyone other than a teenage boy look at a game like that, and think it's okay?
posted to MetaFilter by Malor at 3:48 PM on April 24, 2013
jklaihi: Sure helps the conversation a hell of a lot to belittle the people who choose to play as a male. Good job.

Just to add to the chorus: oddly, in this case, the argument about Broshep versus Femshep isn't really about gender, although it may look that way.

Rather, the argument has arisen because the natural tendency of men is to choose a male avatar. But, Jennifer Hale is a much better voice… [more]
posted to MetaFilter by Malor at 4:35 AM on April 26, 2013
Oops, sorry I misspelled your name there, jklaiho.
posted to MetaFilter by Malor at 10:40 AM on April 26, 2013

Hush Little Journo, Don't Say a Word
A few people have also pointed out that the patched version that allows you to play a city offline doesn't really mean that there are no calculations for trade between cities in a region being done on the server.

There are a few, but it's tiny, just a few numbers per city. A 386 could host multiple regions just fine, except for the save/load part... and judging from the number of complaints I've seen about saving and… [more]
posted to MetaFilter by Malor at 4:25 PM on April 25, 2013
The even sadder part, which is not really funny at all, is that, even if they're complaining now, everyone is going to be beating down the doors of the gaming companies for their next fix.

As a group, we are very much like Charlie Brown and the football.
posted to MetaFilter by Malor at 5:17 PM on April 25, 2013

"The Logic Of Violence In Criminal War"
An Insurgency Coming To A Place Near You?

This is, perhaps, the most important thing about the failing War on Drugs. We are making war on ourselves, and the battlefields have been on the periphery of the economy, in other countries. But, with each passing year, the drugs gangs get stronger, directly because we are fighting them. And the conflict moves further and further toward the center.

Once upon a… [more]
posted to MetaFilter by Malor at 8:02 AM on April 25, 2013

Grimes is not your waif
Wow, I'm kind of appalled that she can't get security when she asks for it. What kind of crap is that?
posted to MetaFilter by Malor at 9:50 AM on April 24, 2013

NATO airstrikes kill 12 children in Kunar, Afghanistan
Many many more of these attacks kill civilians than the government admits.

This is the real policy, no kidding: any male killed by a drone strike is automatically declared to be a terrorist. Only if they can prove their innocence are they considered to be civilian.

And, of course, being dead, it's fairly hard to show up in court and give testimony about what you were doing that day.
posted to MetaFilter by Malor at 2:48 AM on April 22, 2013
I was going to say the exact same thing, Seymour. He doesn't just make an extraordinary assertion, he also claims that it's indisputable truth.

Renoroc: what, specifically, are your qualifications to make that bare assertion? How do you know? What is your evidence, and what is the source of that evidence?
posted to MetaFilter by Malor at 5:51 AM on April 22, 2013
Dasein: You may wish to take that chance with your life; a government has no right to sacrifice the lives of its citizens on the altar of pacifism and moral self-righteousness.

Which is exactly what led to My Lai -- being absolutely certain.
posted to MetaFilter by Malor at 11:58 AM on April 22, 2013
Oh, and:

Right after 9/11, the left was happy to point to root causes: the sanctions against Saddam, for instance. Bin Laden was particularly angered by American troops in Saudi Arabia. Both of those existed to protect other Arab states from the threat posed by Saddam

You are conveniently completely ignoring fifty years of U.S. meddling in the Middle East, including the installation of governments we like,… [more]
posted to MetaFilter by Malor at 12:07 PM on April 22, 2013
And it seems to me that you are conveniently ignoring the Cold War, wherein the Soviets would have been all too happy to secure the world's supply of oil if the U.S. wasn't willing to have a military presence in the Middle East.

That doesn't matter to the people that live there. They didn't care about the Cold War, and they don't today. They just want to organize their societies and live their lives how they see fit, and we are a… [more]
posted to MetaFilter by Malor at 12:17 PM on April 22, 2013
An ethical belief system is like a penis - it's great to have, and you're entitled to be proud of it, but I'd appreciate if you didn't wave yours in other people's faces without their explicit consent.

Offhand, wolfdreams, I'd say killing people because they might be a threat someday is a lot more intrusive infliction of morality.

You are arguing that, in essence, because we are strong, we should feel free to kill anyone we… [more]
posted to MetaFilter by Malor at 4:19 PM on April 22, 2013
Another way of putting that: one of the main functions of civilization to keep people from killing each other.

So people are telling you, wolfdreams, that you shouldn't kill people who haven't done you any harm. And you're characterizing this as them waving their penis in your face. Well, I'm here to tell ya, that is what civilization is for. That's probably the single biggest reason we have it.

And, it would appear, you need some serious penis-waving.
posted to MetaFilter by Malor at 4:33 PM on April 22, 2013
wolfdreams01: The important thing about my ethical system though is that I don't try to force others to abide by it, and consequently I resent when others try to force their own ethical systems on me.

Look, when your ethical system has you killing innocent people, then we absolutely must intervene. We must. You are wrong to want those people dead, and we are right to stop you from killing them.

Your opinion is pretty much irrelevant.
posted to MetaFilter by Malor at 9:43 AM on April 24, 2013
It's not like, after all, something you're doing in the privacy of your own home. There, you have a strong expectation that we need to butt the fuck out of how you run your life and what you believe.

But when your beliefs involve people's actual deaths, you get no space whatsoever.
posted to MetaFilter by Malor at 9:45 AM on April 24, 2013

Who would win in a fight? Trudy or Annie?
Well, I'm one of the oldsters, and I'm in Marinich's camp -- it's a jif, just like peanut butter.

Fortunately, this ancient argument is being replaced by the new one, how to pronounce PNG.
posted to MetaFilter by Malor at 5:24 PM on April 22, 2013
Folks, from Rhomboid's link, the actual inventors of the format had this to say, emphasis mine:
The GIF (Graphics Interchange Format), pronounced "JIF", was designed by CompuServe and the official specification released in June of 1987.
The people who invented it get to say how it's pronounced. They say jif.

Like it or not, it's jif. Hard-g giffers are wrong, now and for all time.
posted to MetaFilter by Malor at 9:40 AM on April 24, 2013

For the Emperor! For the Imperium of Man!
Awesome creation, but silly suit from a tactical perspective. It's slow and places a person in danger, whereas drones are expendable.

I'm not too up on Warhammer, but I'm pretty sure the actual suits are heavily mechanized, full of servos and jetpacks. That foam version is slow, but the 'real' version, if such a thing could actually exist, would be much faster, and terribly deadly.

Also, it looks like his only weapon… [more]
posted to MetaFilter by Malor at 7:22 AM on April 24, 2013

San Francisco 1955
I grew up north of the City, and didn't spend that much time there. But I know some of it pretty well, and it was downright eerie seeing a 1950s version of the 1990s version I learned. I imagine, if I went back now, it would look almost as strange.

Several things really struck me about this video. Driving, for instance, seems to have been an exceptionally casual thing, where lane markers were a vague suggestion, and stoplights were a rarity. People turning left… [more]
posted to MetaFilter by Malor at 1:02 PM on April 21, 2013
It was kind of sad, realizing that most of those people in, for instance, those train cars at PlayLand were either very old, or dead.
posted to MetaFilter by Malor at 12:12 PM on April 22, 2013

The water goes over the bridge; the ship goes through the tunnel.
I wanted it to be a ship tunnel that went underwater. I'm mad, me.

For some reason, my initial image was more or less of a 'boat underpass', where they would dig deeper to go under something, and let boats travel along the tunnel. Sort of like the Pirates of the Caribbean ride, only bigger. But I was trying to imagine how that would actually work, and wasn't coming up with anything immediately obvious.

The actual idea is… [more]
posted to MetaFilter by Malor at 4:57 PM on April 20, 2013

The alchemists of Wall Street are at it again.
So, to recap: under the tail end of the Bush administration, and all of the Obama administration, we spent uncounted trillions of dollars for nothing. Worse than that: we deployed all those trillions with the explicit purpose of preventing anything in the economy from changing.

So, voila, it worked! Nothing changed. And nothing will change until 'too big to fail' is banished forever from the lexicon. TBTF is, very likely, the… [more]
posted to MetaFilter by Malor at 12:09 PM on April 20, 2013

Movies in Color
Balok, you obviously have not been exposed to the glory of
posted to MetaFilter by Malor at 10:43 AM on April 20, 2013

Boston in lockdown as hunt for marathon bombers unfolds
empath: This kid was actively seeking to murder more people.

We don't really even know that it's the same kid! It might be, and if he ends up dead, I'm sure he'll be declared as the bomber, but until we have a trial and see some real evidence, we know almost nothing.

What we know is what the police are claiming. The Boston police, however, are widely known for being a bunch of fucking idiots.
posted to MetaFilter by Malor at 9:46 AM on April 19, 2013

Antennas for all
The broadcasters need to win, or they lose a big chunk of revenue.

So, basically, they don't like the old deal anymore, where they transmit stuff over the air for free. Aereo really is renting antennas, and this case is the broadcasters saying that they don't want broadcast customers anymore.

If they want to shut down Aereo, they can do that instantly, just by ceasing to broadcast. They clearly should do this, as broadcasting… [more]
posted to MetaFilter by Malor at 9:17 AM on April 19, 2013

Meet The Edwardians
Why don't they just play it back at 18fps, instead?
posted to MetaFilter by Malor at 12:15 PM on April 18, 2013

Fruit Flies at the Whole Foods
muddgirl has well and truly beaten me to it, raising most or all of the issues I would have raised. This paper doesn't actually tell you even what it thinks it's telling you.

So why is it getting national attention? Because it's telling us what we want to hear. The idea that expensive organic food is better for you than the cheap mass-produced kind is an idea that people really like. And analysis tends to get shortchanged when someone is purporting… [more]
posted to MetaFilter by Malor at 12:08 PM on April 18, 2013

Do you like entropy?

I don't have a strong opinion there, but I can assure you, most fervently, that entropy does not like me.
posted to MetaFilter by Malor at 1:13 AM on April 18, 2013

This system sucks
adipocere: We must not give in to the urge to build mechanisms of control on others, if only for the very practical reason that those mechanisms can be used on us, as well, for purposes we would abhor.

I'd favorite that five times, if I could.
posted to MetaFilter by Malor at 9:12 PM on April 17, 2013

Sword maker Francis Boyd
Man, I can't believe they didn't run a picture of his favorite blade. The heck?
posted to MetaFilter by Malor at 7:40 AM on April 17, 2013

Connect to ┓┏ 凵 =╱⊿┌┬┐
Oh my god, this week's episode. "It's in the walls!" -- on a submarine. This is certainly the stupidest episode of NuWho, by many miles. I'm not familiar with old Who, but it wouldn't shock me if it's in the the top five stupidest episodes, ever.

It's so bad, they should put it on RiffTrax.

I went back and checked; this ep is by Mark Gatiss. If it had been by Moffat, I would have quit Who completely. I'm still tempted; whoever greenlighted this script is a goddamn moron.
posted to MetaFilter by Malor at 11:55 PM on April 13, 2013
Plus, even if you ignore the fact that everyone on the "Soviet" submarine speaks with a strong English accent, even before the Doctor and the Tardis translation field show up, you've got a nuclear-armed military crew, from an absolutist government, that has no concept of military discipline. Everyone on that crew pretty much ignores the captain and does whatever the heck they want, like melting a giant block of ice in the storeroom because they're curious about it.… [more]
posted to MetaFilter by Malor at 2:13 PM on April 14, 2013
This was a classic Hinchcliffe-style bottle episode,

Uh, no. Especially not the 'classic' part, which implies that it had any redeeming value whatsoever.
posted to MetaFilter by Malor at 5:00 PM on April 14, 2013
Then why not make it an English submarine, for chrissake?

If they really wanted to make it Russian, and make it actually work in the Who universe, they should have had the crew speaking Russian, with subtitles, before the Tardis showed up, and then bam, instantly switching to English, possibly with a Russian accent. They wouldn't need to explain it, they would just need to do it. Net run time would be just about the same, cost slightly increased. They could even have… [more]
posted to MetaFilter by Malor at 12:36 AM on April 17, 2013

MetaFilter is my anti-drug.
I've been of the personal opinion that the strident anti-pot messages have been particularly damaging to the goal of keeping kids away from dangerous stuff. Pot is not dangerous. It just isn't. But adults insist that it is, and scream bloody murder about it, all red-faced with their wattles shaking.

Then, when the kids actually try it, they figure out that, yet again, the adults are lying to them, as they so frequently do. So then they ignore the screaming about… [more]
posted to MetaFilter by Malor at 6:47 PM on April 16, 2013

"solved the problems of both journalism and advertising at once"
My takeaway: there is no longer any such thing as ethics in American life.

And we don't care. We just don't care. We keep voting for it.
posted to MetaFilter by Malor at 7:27 AM on April 15, 2013
Rory Marinich: And there never has been. Never. Has. Been.

This is one of the prime intellectual errors, one particularly common in the young: the incorrect belief that things have always been as they are now, and that they will always be this way in the future. You're demonstrating it in spades, here.

There have always been people who didn't care, but they were never so prevalent as they are now. And… [more]
posted to MetaFilter by Malor at 9:11 AM on April 15, 2013

belters expanse trajectory: working up the Epstein Drive
One little thing I caught from a slide is that they expect to reduce the parts count somewhat, in the new edition. How much? Well, the old engines took more than 5,000 parts. They claim they'll be able to build an almost identically functioning machine with less than a hundred.

Apparently, a lot of the complexity was building, essentially, a fluidic computer in the engine, one that would only allow each step in the ignition sequence to fire if the preceding one had… [more]
posted to MetaFilter by Malor at 5:56 AM on April 15, 2013

Sick from it all
The next time you're inclined to snicker at the Korean fear of 'fan death', think of the community in Green Bank, West Virginia.
posted to MetaFilter by Malor at 6:59 PM on April 13, 2013

Frozen seared steak
Looks to me like the big advantage here, over grilling, is the use of the meat thermometer. I wonder if just using one of those on a regular grill would do the same thing?
posted to MetaFilter by Malor at 6:56 PM on April 13, 2013

Gene genie, let yourself go
Further, the implication seems to be that nobody will be interested in doing research to improve people's health unless they can make millions doing so.

I don't think it works that way.
posted to MetaFilter by Malor at 9:13 PM on April 12, 2013

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