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Multidimensional Radical Centrist

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joined 2022 September 04 18:24:54 UTC


User ID: 64


Multidimensional Radical Centrist

1 follower   follows 0 users   joined 2022 September 04 18:24:54 UTC


No bio...


User ID: 64

I have long thought that it would have been completely reasonable for Biden to try to negotiate a pardon for Trump a la Ford pardoning Nixon in return for a back-to-normalcy sort of proposal. On the other hand Nixon was term limited and Trump was at least in a position to consider running again. Perhaps in return for retiring from political life? It was also a pretty unpopular decision by Ford at the time, but I think in hindsight was probably better for just moving on as a nation.

Although it's not even clear that Trump would have accepted it if offered -- he doesn't seem like one willing to retire quietly. Nor does Biden, who steadfastly refuses to consider dropping out, seem quite as much of a one-term caretaking administration as was perhaps originally advertised, so it may never have been under consideration to begin with.

I think this was a common conservative complaint about Hillary in 2016: the "Copresidents" line was from an SNL skit, but I think it resonated at least as well as the "I can see Russia from my house" (also an SNL quote). If you're so concerned about long-term influence like that, it seems that almost electing a candidate that already lived 8 years in the White House seems like it should also be worrisome.

I don't completely discount your concerns, but Trump will be four years older in 2028.

and the percentage of books written in the last 10 years (much less the last 20) is absurdly high.

I almost certainly can't find it now, but I remember stumbling upon a list of movies or albums like this that was published decades back, probably in an old magazine, and realizing that it had a similar bias that had aged terribly: half of the then-contemporary ones didn't seem to have been mentioned again, but had heard of all the classics.

At least it's not a new bias, I suppose.

Although presumably a Secret Service agent will fire first if they see a gun,

There have been rumors circling that the Secret Service counter-snipers may have been directed not to fire first. At first that seems silly to me, but I think it makes sense in such an environment with constantly-changing scenery, civilians prone to doing all sorts of silly things, and new law enforcement organizations to cooperate with every week.

Yes, "shoot if you see someone with a gun" seems reasonable, and to be honest I'd probably defend it, but I can only imagine that we're only seeing the one(?) false-negative in my lifetime. I don't think I can point to a case where they did shoot first (or at least without a direct credible threat), either, but I can only imagine that given the complexity of the job they've come close to shots that wouldn't sit well with the public more often than they'll ever admit to us (for security reasons, naturally): Local law enforcement went up on the wrong roof, kids playing with airsoft guns, an unrelated carjacking a block away from the motorcade, suspicious-looking camera equipment, and so forth. It's pretty clear they don't shoot anybody who breaches the White House fence: that seems to happen regularly, even toddlers, and the optics from that would be terrible.

I am loosely of the opinion that we've already passed the maximum likelihood of civil war in this generation. If anything, the Culture War as a broader battle seems to be calming down, although this particular incident perhaps points the opposite direction. Both sides seem to have reached a point of being too tired of apocalyptic rhetoric to be energized by their own positive attributes: last I checked, both candidates have higher unfavorable polling numbers than favorable numbers.

More broadly, I'm coming around to a personal hypothesis that the introduction of the Internet as a social medium is starting to have run its course. We had a good couple decades where it was almost the exclusive domain of the young and well-educated, decaying September by September as normies have gradually settled the digital frontier. For a while, the discourse was Blue (with a strong helping of Techno-Libertarian) because the population was more generally. And as that faded, left-partisans were able to evaporatively cool dissent (cancel culture) in the space to maintain the partisan atmosphere. But evaporative cooling only works so far: at some point it cools to the point where people start noticing that the emperor has no clothes: I think we saw the peak of this in 2016, where the strongest efforts of blue partisans weren't able to completely ban online red-tribe rallying points. The Internet can no longer be maintained as a partisan territory for either side.

And I think that's generally still true. The forced-to-be-online interactions of 2020 seem to have had major effects: renewed efforts to ban red-tribe online spaces and such, but forcing everyone online doesn't really change that evaporative cooling is played out. Instead, it seems like the period of rapid social (and possibly also economic) change that the Internet has wrought seems to be coming to a close.

It's not the best-supported hypothesis, but it seems plausible enough for me.

I find it darkly ironic that problems exist at both ends of this spectrum: yes, there are obese people, but the number of serious runners (among other sports) with very real eating disorders isn't zero either.

But for most people, more activity and less gluttony is probably better.

There is a kernel of truth to this, but my understanding is that the data suggest adaptation doesn't require much intensity, and that if "easy" can include even things like a walking pace if enough time is spent on it. Just walking an extra mile or two a day is better than nothing.

Yes, higher intensity is in some ways better, but it doesn't need to be everything.

I have a pretty short commute. Usually by car, although I bike sometimes when the weather is nice. There is a bus route with stops near both ends that I've never tried because all the mapping apps tell me it'll take three times as long. The bike is faster than the bus.

Three sets of fifteen minutes seems much more doable (although the original might not be out of the question), and it looks like they scaled it up over the six weeks as fitness improved. It would be interesting to see how much, but I didn't see that in a quick skim.

It doesn't seem that surprising to me generally: endurance exercise uses a lot of energy from blood sugar (and also from fat), and everything I've read suggests that the liver has a huge role in regulating that. I've also heard plenty of anecdotes about diabetes improving (or at least being easier to regulate) with exercise. The idea that reducing blood glucose without using insulin (exercise!) might improve insulin sensitivity sounds pretty reasonable: abstaining from caffeine for a while makes a cup of coffee hit harder when you do have one.

45min at 65% VO2Max

I'm a bit familiar with the literature on endurance sports (mostly cycling, but some running -- the cyclists have better quantitative data), and I'd be curious to know more about this study. Very coarsely (unless you can afford real metabolic testing), my understanding is that VO2Max is roughly a maximal 5 minute effort. For me, 65 percent of that for 45 minutes would be a decently hard workout I'd maybe want an easy day after.

But my understanding is that there is a pretty wide variance of VO2 power and 60 minute power, and that it wouldn't be out of the question for a specialist in middle-distance (VO2-dominant) events to have trouble doing this workout. Was this research on mostly-untrained subjects? I'm not sure how hard an effort this would be for them. Did they report perceived efforts?

Regardless, I would agree on recommending more exercise generally.

I have heard reasonable explanations of the new passkey systems that the big tech companies are slowly trying to roll out. It's effectively replacing a symmetric password (client and server both know the password) with an asymmetric signature (my client can prove itself to the server without the server itself learning enough to do so itself). It doesn't solve the two-factor problem itself, but probably could change how user passwords are handled.

On the other hand, they are distinctly too complex to commit to memory, so they end up having to be stored in a physical device, which has its own issues. Also viable backups and account restoration have conflicting concerns with privacy: keeping a copy of your credentials on Big Tech servers is, for some, the antithesis of the goal.

This is why SMS is not a recommended second authentication factor for high-security or high-profile accounts: this can and has been abused before, many times.

I'm not going to endorse OP's proposal, but just watching the opioid crisis and overdosing hit my city looks a lot like your suggestion already. I'm modestly surprised I haven't heard any self-declared progressives declare that euthanasia is a human right and trying to discourage Narcan in obvious heckin' valid overdoses suicide attempts -- there are already plenty of anecdotes of people saved by it becoming violent about its effects. It's an obvious opportunity to pat oneself on the back and save money at the same time.

But I do find the idea fairly repugnant.

You know, the traditional answer to this is probably putting the appropriate honorific with your name in the signature. It (in most cases) answers what pronouns you prefer, and although English is my native tongue, in the foreign languages I've studied, honorifics generally show up pretty quickly, for uses like how to refer your teacher.


Mr. Vexillologist

I consider transition a primarily religious belief, having to do with a metaphysical gender-soul which exists separate from any physical evidence thereof, and a philosophical requirement that one live in conformance with it.

I remember a particularly memorable anecdote, I'm pretty sure from The Rest is History podcast, comparing the craziness of the last decade or so to the Reformation: we've got our statue-toppling iconoclasts, and our loud philosophical debates including over, effectively, transubstantiation after terrestrial rituals. It's not "this bread and wine have literally and physically become body and blood" (here, try that and let me run it through a mass spectrometer!) but "this organism, previously male, is now female and always has been." I'm not sure it's an answer to your thoughts, but I found it comforting that this sort of disagreement has long-standing precedent in history.

Wasn't the response at the time something like "Why does he care so much about this test. It's so easy anyone not obviously having dementia could pass it."?

I bet the folks saying that at the time aren't saying that today.

Today I learned. Thanks!


You know, we have a new monarch on the throne, so it seems like the time to coin a new adjective here, but "Charlesian" doesn't exactly roll off the tongue.

Although Elizabeth II doesn't really have a good unique one either that I've come across.

Just from following the news, I have felt a sense of, I dunno, listlessness in this administration in the last couple years. There have been a lot of mixed messages, which makes it feel like either they're steering the entire ship on the basis of which way the winds public opinion polls are blowing, or it's the unchecked infighting of a royal court's competing fiefdoms without a strong executive to force high-level alignment. And honestly, it feels pretty depressing that "running almost exclusively on opinion polls" is the charitable option.

We saw executive orders on immigration from the first week of the administration get mostly rescinded recently after claiming congressional action was necessary. The administration came out opposing transgender surgeries for minors within the last week, but its appointed members were advocating to remove age limits from the professional guidance just a couple years ago. Nobody is stepping forward to give speeches giving us a bigger picture and answering hard questions on the changing directions. It works for a while, but it seems like the wheels are starting to come off.

Well, realistically I'd guess that the reason no one wants to do that now is that recognising Palestinian statehood comes off as "I am taking the Palestinian side against Israel".

I recognize that this is largely true in practice, but I have been surprised at the complete lack of a middle ground internationally on this. One could imagine a hypothetical "we recognize a Palestinian state, with borders that explicitly do not span from the Jordan to the Mediterranean," which isn't exactly accepting maximalist Palestinian territorial claims.

There may well be good reasons this hasn't been done, but it's not like there aren't historical examples of this: Germany's post-1945 borders were effectively drawn by everyone else at the table, and they've pretty universally accepted this.

To be fair, the only time Trump has accepted the outcome of an election he was involved in was when the election went in his favor.

This is probably excessively pedantic, but despite winning several states, he withdrew from the Reform Party primary for president in 2000 with a fair amount of drama, but not denying the outcome of the elections.

The Democrats insist that the right to vote for one's representatives is sacrosanct, that voting is "Democracy," that the country is "Democracy," and that the Democrats are "Democracy."

Rhetorically, this might be true, but if you look at the actual comments on the issues, "democracy" seems to get quickly pushed aside in almost every instance I can think of where a democratic vote doesn't lead to the "correct" outcome. Look at the reaction to California's Proposition 8 in 2008 where the state voted to ban same-sex marriage: did Democrats adhere to the will of the people expressed at the ballot box? Or the reaction to Dobbs, which wasn't rallying the democratically-elected (blue!) majority in Congress to pass an abortion rights bill, but to largely rally around the idea that such rights are absolute and don't even deserve codification by the legislature. Or the entire Russia-gate thing, which seems to have been largely based on the idea that a bunch of questionably-funded internet ads might sway naive voters to the extent that we should question the validity of their counted ballots.

But I think it's really only true rhetorically: in practice it seems to be far more pragmatic questions of what power can let them get away with.

In addition to the natural law questions, outright banning circumcision pokes some very interesting (and difficult) questions of religious freedom. As a cultural practice for some groups, it long predates pretty much all written law.

While I'm against the practice generally, the thought of banning it (even just for minors) gives me pause.

If that worked, you'd think that this would be the case today, but there seem to be fairly obvious counterexamples.

A quick google search suggests that your average American (who is overweight if not obese) consumes 3600 calories a day

That is, um, more than I expected. I'm personally closer to OP, and thought my 2500-3000 calories was a lot, although admittedly I try to make it pretty healthy within that allotment. There have been times in my life where absurd volumes of low-intensity exercise (think through-hiking) have actually made it difficult to physically eat enough in a day to keep up, some of that is having to carry the food and not sitting down often to eat it. I hear the polar explorers of a century ago (and perhaps still today) were eating butter by the stick just to cram in enough calories.

That said, I think OP should worry about getting a sufficiently well-balanced diet: macros are important even for endurance athletes (who frequently need more carbs than weightlifters), and I've heard enough anecdotes about various micronutrient deficiencies that I try to balance things out a bit. But while running, especially longer races? Even the professionals there are consuming lots of sugar to maximize performance. I do recall an anecdote from a professional triathlete trying to explain to his dentist that he deliberately consumes about a gallon of sugary sports drink daily, because that can still cause issues for teeth.

I realize they're probably not unusual, but your roommate's diet as you describe it sounds terrifying.