The Bigger, Badder, Even More Serious Thread [5]

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Re: The Bigger, Badder, Even More Serious Thread [5]

Post by Lancebloke on Thu Jun 29, 2017 4:46 pm

$1m isn't actually that much when it transfers in to reality... but it is a lot when you think that is raised by just a gaming community. I put my donation in!
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Re: The Bigger, Badder, Even More Serious Thread [5]

Post by Pettytyrant101 on Sun Jul 09, 2017 1:32 am

{{This is an interesting and intriguing little nugget hidden away in the Defence Authorization Act- this basically defines the US armed forces and for the first time since the 1940's the one currently heading to be voted on in Congress includes the creation of a new US armed forces unit.

So who are these new soldiers?

The United States Space Corps.

Yup basically space marines!

According to the bill their job would be - "providing combat-ready space forces that enable the commanders of the combatant commands to fight and win wars."

One wonders against who? (or what?) }}}

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Re: The Bigger, Badder, Even More Serious Thread [5]

Post by Eldorion on Sun Jul 09, 2017 3:08 am

I imagine it would mostly do the same shit the Air Force Space Command already does, which largely involves launching and maintaining military satellites, as well as keeping tabs on what other countries are doing with their military satellites. I admit I'm not sure what the bill means by "combat-ready space forces", but looking through the rest of that section the bill doesn't elaborate, so it's possible that the Congresspeople and/or staffers responsible for that word choice don't really know either. Razz In any event, I have a hard time imagining it means sending soldiers into space since there's nobody for them to fight up there, and even if there was, the US government does not currently have the means to send people into low Earth orbit, much less to another world. (Since the end of the shuttle program in 2011, US astronauts have reached the International Space Station via Soyuz flights, which are launched from the Russian-administered Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan.)

Edit: full text of the bill available here: https://www.congress.gov/115/bills/hr2810/BILLS-115hr2810rh.pdf

The USAF doesn't seem to pleased about the prospect of having responsibilities (and money!) taken away from them, but any service branch would probably resist it given the rivalry and jockeying for budgetary position that goes on. FWIW, the Russian Space Forces used to be an independent branch of the Russian Armed Forces but they lost that status in a series of mergers with other sections of the military.
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Re: The Bigger, Badder, Even More Serious Thread [5]

Post by halfwise on Sun Jul 09, 2017 12:57 pm

If a new Space Command means other services can stop jockying for their own satellites then it's probably a worthwhile creation. Come to think of it, are aircraft carriers run by the air force or navy? scratch

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Re: The Bigger, Badder, Even More Serious Thread [5]

Post by Pettytyrant101 on Sun Jul 09, 2017 6:48 pm

{{ All I can think of is this- }}


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Re: The Bigger, Badder, Even More Serious Thread [5]

Post by Eldorion on Sun Jul 09, 2017 8:27 pm

halfwise wrote:Come to think of it, are aircraft carriers run by the air force or navy? scratch

The Navy operates the aircraft carriers, and carrier-based aircraft are piloted by Naval aviators. Both the Navy proper and the Marine Corps also have their own land-based air stations as well, though, separate from the Air Force.
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Re: The Bigger, Badder, Even More Serious Thread [5]

Post by Eldorion on Thu Jul 13, 2017 8:31 am

I generally like The Economist and find most of their stories that pop up in my Facebook news feed to be interesting, but tonight I saw this one and...

https://www.economist.com/news/books-and-arts/21724790-big-foreign-policy-question-worrying-washington-will-america-and-china-go

War would be disastrous for both sides, but that does not mean it cannot happen. No one wanted the first world war, yet it started anyway, thanks to a series of miscalculations.

*face twitches involuntarily*

{{{This should arguably go in the "Things that are making you crabbit" thread since I just need to vent Razz but given the subject matter I'll drop it here.}}}
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Re: The Bigger, Badder, Even More Serious Thread [5]

Post by halfwise on Thu Jul 13, 2017 11:52 am

That does seem a less careful article than most in the economist. But though I wouldn't characterize the start of WW1 as a "series of miscalculations" I wonder how you would characterize it, given your strong reaction to that description. (I've always thought of WW1 starting the way a tension sculpture would pop if one line is cut).

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Re: The Bigger, Badder, Even More Serious Thread [5]

Post by Eldorion on Thu Jul 13, 2017 7:21 pm

I mean, the causes of WWI are still fiercely debated by scholars more than a century later, so I can't claim to speak with authority, but it's pretty well-established that there were intense militaristic and jingoistic factions in all of the major countries. People like to blame the alliance system, but the alliances did not compel their members to join each other in wars of aggression. Since all of the great powers in the run-up to WWI were behaving aggressively, other countries could have taken the Italian option and refused to fight without violating their treaty obligations. Although Italy later joined the war against the countries it had been closer to previously, so it's not like they were at heart any more pacifistic than the other powers.

There was of course disagreement within countries and pacifists existed across Europe, but broadly speaking the Germans wanted to fight the Russians before Russia fully industrialized, the Russians preferred to fight the Austrians directly rather than be humiliated as they had been by the outcome of the Balkan Wars (which Russia tried to influence) a couple years earlier, the Austrians wanted to either fight or humiliate the Serbs rather than cooperate in a criminal investigation the normal way, the French and Italians had territorial claims against the Germans and the Austrians that they wanted to capture by force, and the British were freaking out over what they saw as their impending economic and military eclipse by Germany (particularly in light of the naval arms race). Though the UK's stated reason for joining the fight, to protect the neutrality of Belgium, was at least more outwardly legitimate than some of the other great powers.

I think it's fair to say that no one expected WWI to become as big as it did but, while there was obviously a lot more to its causes than outlined above, the July Crisis resulting from Franz Ferdinand's assassination would probably not have spiraled into global war without the prevailing culture of belligerent militarism in Europe and the attitude that war was an acceptable, even desirable, method of resolving international disputes. Couple that with the attitude of many that the relatively peaceful Europe of the past century had grown decadent and that war was a purifying force and I don't think you can honestly call the war unintentional or unwanted.
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Re: The Bigger, Badder, Even More Serious Thread [5]

Post by Pettytyrant101 on Tue Jul 25, 2017 6:30 pm

{{ An excellent Norway/Scots collaboration - enjoy mining for coal America the rest of the world will be somewhere in the future waiting on you to wake up!! Assuming you dont screw the planet for the rest of us first of course Mad }}}


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Re: The Bigger, Badder, Even More Serious Thread [5]

Post by David H on Tue Jul 25, 2017 6:54 pm

Pettytyrant101 wrote:{{ the rest of the world will be somewhere in the future waiting on you to wake up!!  Mad }}}

Hey! Mad

Our community has been producing more wind energy that we can use for 7 years now! These 4 turbines are run by a charity, and not only do they produce a surplus of clean energy, the profits go to subsidizing the bills of low income families!


http://coastalcap.org/coastal-energy-project/
The Coastal Energy Project was constructed and put into production in June, 2010  in Grayland, Washington. The four turbines produce an estimated 13.5 million kWh of clean energy annually that is sold to the local public utility district.  The revenue directly supports CCAP’s many needed programs to the low-income families of Grays Harbor and Pacific Counties.

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Re: The Bigger, Badder, Even More Serious Thread [5]

Post by halfwise on Tue Jul 25, 2017 7:15 pm

That's a brilliant use of a charity.

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Re: The Bigger, Badder, Even More Serious Thread [5]

Post by Pettytyrant101 on Tue Jul 25, 2017 7:19 pm

{{It's certainly good to see bits of America that are not terrified of anything vague socialist in concept!
But yeah thank Trump, but the general view of the US in terms of energy tech and climate right now is that you are regressing and hiding under a rock and preteding like its still the industrial revolution whilst the rest of the world forges ahead without you}}

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Re: The Bigger, Badder, Even More Serious Thread [5]

Post by malickfan on Tue Jul 25, 2017 7:50 pm


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Re: The Bigger, Badder, Even More Serious Thread [5]

Post by halfwise on Tue Jul 25, 2017 8:27 pm

Malick: I'd say yes.

Petty: It's only conservative 40% which wants to stay regressed. Don't blame this on all of America! They narrowly cross the election threshold by other social issues that garner cross-over votes.

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Re: The Bigger, Badder, Even More Serious Thread [5]

Post by Pettytyrant101 on Tue Jul 25, 2017 8:51 pm

{{Its the message you send as a nation that counts Halfy- and the word from the top in your nation is 'what climate change' and 'lets dig for coal, frack for gas, drill the ice caps, sell off the protected habitats to the biggest industrial bidder!!'
The message from Trump is that America cares about one thing an done thing only, America (Well Ok its Trump, but officially its America) and whatever progress the international community has made to this point in working together to confront energy issues the US is not in the club any more. And someone else, Russia, China, France, Germany will step up to take their place leading the way. Once that happens America will be a lot less relevant and will find it hard to make themselves so again in the future.
The damage Trump is doing to America internationally is very real.}}}

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Re: The Bigger, Badder, Even More Serious Thread [5]

Post by Eldorion on Tue Jul 25, 2017 9:06 pm


The Kims have been nutty and despotic but I don't think the evidence suggests Jong-un is suicidal (or that either of his predecessors were), so I think it's unlikely that NK will launch a nuclear attack on another nation. Their schtick is basically a protection racket -- "that's an awfully nice geopolitical order you've got there, would be a shame if something happened to it" -- but NK would be outmatched in a conflict that actually came to total war. The leverage they have is that no one wants to deal with the aftermath of such a war, not just because of potential damage to their own countries but also having to deal with the resultant refugee crisis on the Korean peninsula and figuring out how to rebuild the North. But there's only so far they can push their luck and if North Korea were the one to actually start a nuclear war, they would no longer have anything to use as a means to force concessions out of other countries unless they won a decisive victory, which is highly unlikely.

I suppose their best bet in such a scenario would be to gamble on China siding with them in order to stop the US from occupying a nation on its border, but that would also mean gambling that China wouldn't just occupy them instead and install their own more reliable puppet government. Which is not to say that I think China wants to do this, because it would undoubtedly be incredibly costly in terms of both lives and money, but again if North Korea were to actually launch a nuclear attack every involved nation's cost-benefit analysis would change dramatically.
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Re: The Bigger, Badder, Even More Serious Thread [5]

Post by David H on Tue Jul 25, 2017 10:36 pm

Pettytyrant101 wrote:{{{The damage Trump is doing to America internationally is very real.}}}

Probably true, in the same way that Brexit hasn't helped the UK's international standing. It's not that none of Trump's core supporters care about that, it's just that it usually doesn't make their list of "Top 5 Things that Piss Me Off".

So how's Brexit's popularity going these days?

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Re: The Bigger, Badder, Even More Serious Thread [5]

Post by Pettytyrant101 on Wed Jul 26, 2017 10:18 pm

{{Brexit is and remains a walking disaster- but then my country didn't vote for the damn thing we are just being dragged along for the sad ride.

I see Trump is moving things into dangerous territory- first he bans transgender folk from serving, including all those who are currently serving, then he tweets, "In America we believe in God'.

Lucky Trump promised to be such a friend to the LGBT community!! }}}}


Last edited by Pettytyrant101 on Thu Jul 27, 2017 12:53 am; edited 1 time in total

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Re: The Bigger, Badder, Even More Serious Thread [5]

Post by halfwise on Wed Jul 26, 2017 10:31 pm

Not to worry. The pentagon basically just gave Trump the middle finger:

https://www.yahoo.com/news/trump-u-s-military-wont-allow-transgender-people-serve-capacity-133152235.html

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Re: The Bigger, Badder, Even More Serious Thread [5]

Post by David H on Thu Jul 27, 2017 2:30 am

Pettytyrant101 wrote:{{we are just being dragged along for the sad ride.}}}}

My sympathies. I guess we can at least count ourselves lucky that our bus has a scheduled stop in another 3.5 years.

As for the trans military tweets, I learned a long time ago that whenever either party starts banging the LGBT drama drum (or the pro-life/choice drum for that matter) you'd better watch their hands especially closely, because almost every time it turns out there's something else up their sleeve they'd rather you didn't see.... Suspect Evil or Very Mad

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Re: The Bigger, Badder, Even More Serious Thread [5]

Post by Pettytyrant101 on Thu Jul 27, 2017 10:09 am

{{Just watched Scaramucci interviewed for BBC Newsnight- is he for real? Is that an act or is he serious? Halfy you're a New Yorker- is this guy genuine cause he sounds like a walking amalgamation of every New York movie cliche rolled into one person! How is anyone supposed to take him seriously? I couldn't stop laughing. I kept thinking he was going to add 'bada-bing' to the end of every sentence!}}}}}}


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Re: The Bigger, Badder, Even More Serious Thread [5]

Post by halfwise on Thu Jul 27, 2017 12:30 pm

Oh he's Trump material, but he seems pretty normal to me. He's a big improvement over Sean Spicer who lashed back angrily under pressure; the Scuch lets it wash right by him without getting upset. You have to understand that native New Yorkers are natural gabbers; conversation is a tussle to be enjoyed, with strangers or friends it's all the same. Scaramucci is much better at rolling with it than Trump, who doesn't seem to enjoy himself in an argument. There are happy arguments between strangers happening in the subways all the time here; it's a cultural norm. This guy is much more a typical New Yorker than Trump.

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Re: The Bigger, Badder, Even More Serious Thread [5]

Post by Mrs Figg on Thu Jul 27, 2017 2:59 pm

Pettytyrant101 wrote:{{Brexit is and remains a walking disaster- but then my country didn't vote for the damn thing we are just being dragged along for the sad ride.
}}}}

half the English are dragged along too!

that idiot Amber Rudd is doing a cost/benefit of EU migrants to the UK NOW!!! can you believe it, instead of doing it BEFORE brexcrement happened.

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Re: The Bigger, Badder, Even More Serious Thread [5]

Post by Pettytyrant101 on Thu Jul 27, 2017 4:19 pm

{{{Yup thats the Tories for you, great at doing things arse to elbow! }}}

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