In other news... (humorous news items)

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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby CorruptUser » Thu Dec 10, 2015 7:07 pm UTC

I'd take that clause if and only if all recordings of the heist belong to the buyer. That'd be worth way more than the album.

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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby Yablo » Thu Dec 10, 2015 8:10 pm UTC

CorruptUser wrote:I'd take that clause if and only if all recordings of the heist belong to the buyer. That'd be worth way more than the album.

Agreed. Pay $2 million for the only copy of a Wu-Tang Clan album, pay another million for state of the art surveillance, produce movie from heist footage, recoup $3 million investment, collect more in profit from movie than Wu-Tang gets from album sales. Sounds solid.
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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby Djehutynakht » Fri Dec 11, 2015 3:29 am UTC

I just want Bill Murray to do it.

That's all I want.

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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby CorruptUser » Fri Dec 11, 2015 6:00 am UTC

Also, considering who it is, I hope the Wu Tang clan's heist just amounts to showing up with rubber hoses and beating Shkreli into giving the keys to the safe.

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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby jewish_scientist » Fri Dec 11, 2015 2:00 pm UTC

Lazar wrote:A Turkish doctor faces jail for posting a Facebook meme comparing Erdoğan to Gollum. Imagine if all countries made it a crime to insult public officials?


http://www.loweringthebar.net/2015/12/g ... perts.html

My favorite line from the article is, "And, not surprisingly, 'the hat quickly turned into a symbol' of political struggle between reformers and conservatives; 'the opponents of the hat revolution were detained,' and dozens of people were actually executed for opposing the hat (or the government that advocated it, depending on who you ask)."
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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby Sizik » Fri Dec 11, 2015 3:44 pm UTC

she/they
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Yes. And if wishes were horses, wishing wells would fill up very quickly with drowned horses.

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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby Djehutynakht » Mon Dec 14, 2015 10:42 am UTC

This showed up while I was perusing the internet to procrastinate.

Seriously?
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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby dg61 » Mon Dec 14, 2015 2:30 pm UTC

That looks like a "Swim with the Alligators!"-type attraction. Unless that's the joke you're making?

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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby Djehutynakht » Mon Dec 14, 2015 3:10 pm UTC

dg61 wrote:That looks like a "Swim with the Alligators!"-type attraction. Unless that's the joke you're making?


Well I assume that's what it is.

My commentary is on the fact that this is the picture they decided to use with that headline.

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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby Grishnakh » Mon Dec 14, 2015 6:53 pm UTC

Djehutynakht wrote:This showed up while I was perusing the internet to procrastinate.

Seriously?


Perhaps it is meant to represent King Jacob Zuma, sitting in his Royal Palace Nkandla, while the people mass at the gates.

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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby jewish_scientist » Tue Dec 15, 2015 3:03 pm UTC

Quick! Where is that post on the crocodile moats?
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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby CorruptUser » Tue Dec 15, 2015 4:57 pm UTC

Don't worry, Zuma won't be eaten by crocs, because he took a shower.

(For those that don't know, Zuma "allegedly" raped a woman with HIV, but claimed that a hot shower would prevent transmission)

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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby Sheikh al-Majaneen » Tue Dec 15, 2015 11:24 pm UTC

Djehutynakht wrote:This showed up while I was perusing the internet to procrastinate.

Seriously?

South African customs can seem strange from the outside.

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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby CorruptUser » Wed Dec 16, 2015 6:34 am UTC

Affluenza teen violates parole. His arrest has been ordered, and he faces 10 years behind bars if he did indeed violate parole. So, we might get justice! Sort of.

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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby KnightExemplar » Wed Dec 16, 2015 5:54 pm UTC

http://www.orlandosentinel.com/news/nat ... story.html

East coast vs West coast. Bomb threat hoax, how California and New York responded to a similar "threat".

Honestly? My opinion on the matter is that "Finals Week" bomb threats are guaranteed to be from students who just want to skip out on an exam. Terrorists generally don't follow school schedules. Although... the bomb threat in NYC looked to be clearly the work of a student.

The message, for example, claimed that the attacks would be carried out in the name of Allah, but the sender used a lower case "a." The email also included a large amount of information about the threatened attacks, which runs counter to common practices of terrorists, Davis said.


So perhaps the LA case is quite different and deserved a different response.
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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby Sheikh al-Majaneen » Wed Dec 16, 2015 10:56 pm UTC

http://crimeblog.dallasnews.com/2015/12 ... -gun.html/

Man carries tripod, people assume it's a gun.

How the hell do Texans, of all people, make that mistake?

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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby Djehutynakht » Thu Dec 17, 2015 1:53 pm UTC

Yablo wrote:That Wu-Tang Clan - Martin Shkreli $2m album deal has an amazing caveat

I want to live in a world where this is true.

‘The buying party also agrees that at any time during the stipulated 88 year period, the seller may legally plan and attempt to execute one (1) heist or caper to steal back Once Upon A Time In Shaolin, which, if successful, would return all ownership rights to the seller.’

Then comes the best bit:

‘Said heist or caper can only be undertaken by currently active members of the Wu-Tang Clan and/or actor Bill Murray, with no legal repercussions.’




Guess who just got arrested...

Have we determined whether the theft clause of that deal is real?

Because if it is, right now would probably be the best time to implement it. With him in jail, n' all.

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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby jewish_scientist » Thu Dec 17, 2015 2:16 pm UTC

KnightExemplar wrote:http://www.orlandosentinel.com/news/nationworld/ct-los-angeles-school-threat-20151216-story.html


Above Article wrote:The move in Los Angeles was "a significant overreaction," New York Police Commissioner William J. Bratton, who once ran the LAPD, said bluntly.


I find the idea that police overreacted to a bomb threat a little strange. I mean, its a bomb threat, not the kind of think to ever take lightly.


KnightExemplar wrote:So perhaps the LA case is quite different and deserved a different response.

It was significantly different. The NYPD know about the LA bomb threat, but the LAPD did not learn about the NY bomb threat until much later.
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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby ahammel » Thu Dec 17, 2015 3:09 pm UTC


Definitely thought it was going to be Bill Murray trying to steal that album.
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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby KnightExemplar » Thu Dec 17, 2015 3:15 pm UTC

jewish_scientist wrote:
KnightExemplar wrote:http://www.orlandosentinel.com/news/nationworld/ct-los-angeles-school-threat-20151216-story.html


Above Article wrote:The move in Los Angeles was "a significant overreaction," New York Police Commissioner William J. Bratton, who once ran the LAPD, said bluntly.


I find the idea that police overreacted to a bomb threat a little strange. I mean, its a bomb threat, not the kind of think to ever take lightly.


At least twice a year there was a bomb threat at my high school. Once during winter finals. And another during spring finals. Consistently. Kids will create bomb threats regularly to avoid tests. There were misc bomb threats at other times (I can only assume there was some kid that had an important test, but wasn't related to me). But the "finals week bomb threat" is bread and butter as far as I'm concerned. This is approximately the time of year for them.

Most of them came from the payphone (oh my god, that was a while ago...) in front of the school. Modern bomb threats from students are clearly taking the form of an email where they pretend to be Muslim (and then misspell various things, like a lower case "a" on Allah). In any case, the point of a bomb threat is to avoid tests. And a savvy student will use any rumor to make it look more credible. (The more credible the threat, the more likely school is canceled and you avoid the test).

EDIT: The LA case is rumored to have come from 8Chan-hosting and the police confirm that it came from a "pornographic" website.
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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby HES » Thu Dec 17, 2015 3:20 pm UTC

jewish_scientist wrote:I find the idea that police overreacted to a bomb threat a little strange. I mean, its a bomb threat, not the kind of think to ever take lightly.

That really depends how credible the threat is.
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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby Coyne » Thu Dec 17, 2015 7:28 pm UTC

jewish_scientist wrote:I find the idea that police overreacted to a bomb threat a little strange. I mean, its a bomb threat, not the kind of think to ever take lightly.


I agree.

It astounds me that there's argument that LA overreacted, looks to me like their reaction was entirely proper. React first -- assess credibility later. The cost is too high if you guess wrong: dead kids.

Frankly, I think NY under-reacted, no matter what they knew about the LA threat.

I recall a Dilbert comic where the boss received a bomb threat. He didn't tell anyone because evacuating the employees would disrupt work, but he took a long walk himself just in case. NY's reaction feels similar.
In all fairness...

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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby Tyndmyr » Thu Dec 17, 2015 7:30 pm UTC

The price for guessing wrong is potentially very high, but...a LOT of false positives happen.

And armchair quarterbacking after the fact is easy. I'm not sure that either is actually wrong. Picking either all the time is probably bad, and vulnerable to exploitation.

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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby HES » Thu Dec 17, 2015 7:31 pm UTC

The cost is also high if you react this way to every single hoax threat
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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby Yablo » Thu Dec 17, 2015 7:39 pm UTC

ahammel wrote:

Definitely thought it was going to be Bill Murray trying to steal that album.

I've gotta admit, I had my fingers crossed.

From the New York Times article on the arrest:
New York Times wrote:Asked if agents had seized the rare Wu-Tang Clan album that Mr. Shkreli reportedly bought for $2 million, United States Attorney Robert L. Capers was coy.

“I wondered how long it was going to take to get to that,” he said. “We’re not aware of where he got the funds that he raised to buy the Wu-Tang Clan album.”
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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby Newt » Thu Dec 17, 2015 11:19 pm UTC

jewish_scientist wrote:I find the idea that police overreacted to a bomb threat a little strange. I mean, its a bomb threat, not the kind of think to ever take lightly.


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2012_Univ ... mb_threats

It's really easy to make bomb threats, and something you could probably do indefinitely if you had an email server set up. If you are committed to taking every threat seriously, you're going to burn resources indefinitely to no effect. Although I don't really know what the alternative is, mass evacuations also tend to result in people being bottlenecked into crowds, which makes things easier for (a more probable) mass shooting; the VA tech shooter sent in bomb threats to potential targets before going on his rampage, presumably to see how people left the building.

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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby commodorejohn » Thu Dec 17, 2015 11:44 pm UTC

Newt wrote:It's really easy to make bomb threats, and something you could probably do indefinitely if you had an email server set up. If you are committed to taking every threat seriously, you're going to burn resources indefinitely to no effect.

That assumes, though, that people are willing to make a semi-infinite number of bomb threats, and that you never manage to catch them, both of which are questionable. And considering the potential consequences if you don't take it seriously and it does turn out to be real...
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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby sardia » Thu Dec 17, 2015 11:58 pm UTC

Then a small number of people died and you make more babies to replace them. Everyone else gets an insurance check.

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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby KnightExemplar » Fri Dec 18, 2015 12:14 am UTC

This is the age of cheap domains, out-of-country VPNs, and youngsters with far too much networking knowledge (seriously, my younger cousins are asking me to help them setup VLANs to play Minecraft with each other... in 6th and 7th grade. Eventually, I learn they set up that crap on their own).

Its the reason why Swatting has become so popular. Bomb Threats are just a more classic example of high school students utilizing their knowledge towards an explicit goal of avoiding school (unlike a Swatter who only does it for the sadistic lulz). But the proper response is the same every time: try to track down the perpetrator, and then prosecute them. Unfortunately the age of powerful encryption and cheap anonymization has made it much harder for police to track down perpetrators... so I'd expect pranks like the bomb threat to continue.

I'm not sure what anyone is supposed to do about a bomb threat anyway. Real Terrorists today strike without warning. Its not like the Boston Marathon Bomber warned everyone before he blew up the bombs. Bomb "threats" are outdated, as are "old school terrorists" who aimed for simpler crimes like ransom or extortion.
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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby sardia » Sat Dec 19, 2015 10:27 pm UTC

http://www.bbc.com/news/magazine-32821678
Germany declares University is now free to everyone, including foreigners. Want a free degree? Just move Germany, and the government will pick up the tab. To be fair, this only includes tuition, so you'll have to pay housing, etc etc which ends up around 5000 Euros a year, which is still a steal.

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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby elasto » Sun Dec 20, 2015 8:15 am UTC

That's impressive enough in its own right, but this part is even more mind-boggling in its own way:

She did not need German, however, in her Master's programme, which was filled with students from 50 different countries but taught entirely in English. In fact, German universities have drastically increased all-English classes to more than 1,150 programmes across many fields.

In 1999, European Union members signed the Bologna Accords, which called for uniform university degrees, and established a Bachelor/Master system across Europe. With hundreds of thousands of students from Portugal to Sweden freely travelling abroad, studying and getting degrees in other countries, English became the common language.

At Hunter's university, the Technical University in Munich, 20% of students are non-German. The University president is keen to have every single graduate programme offered in English, and only in English, by the year 2020.


Also, it's good that the figures add up and that this isn't simply just charity:

Research shows that the system is working, says Sebastian Fohrbeck of DAAD, and that 50% of foreign students stay in Germany: "Even if people don't pay tuition fees, if only 40% stay for five years and pay taxes we recover the cost for the tuition and for the study places so that works out well."

For a society with a demographic problem - a growing retired population and fewer young people entering college and the workforce - qualified immigration is seen as a resolution to the problem: "Keeping international students who have studied in the country is the ideal way of immigration. They have the needed certificates, they don't have a language problem at the end of their stay and they know the culture," says Fohrbeck.


(The UK, to its shame, attempts to milk foreign students for every penny and tries to evict from the country as soon after the course completes as possible. Germany views healthy, motivated, skilled and educated youngsters as one of the world's greatest economic resources - in contrast to the UK who appears to view them as some kind of vermin merely because they dropped out of the wrong kind of vagina...)

Finally, it does show a whole different mindset towards education:

In the capital city of Berlin, the most popular destination for international students, the state government says it has no plans to introduce fees anytime soon: "We will not introduce tuition fees for international students," says Krach, the Secretary of Science. "We don't want the entry to college to be dependent on your social status and we don't want that the exchange between countries is only dependent on the question of finances."

In the US, meanwhile, there won't be any movement to create a system similar to the one in Germany as long as people flock to expensive schools for their reputation.

"College education in the US is seen as privilege and expected to cost money and in Germany it is seen as an extension of a free high school education where one expects it to be provided," says Jeffrey Peck, Dean of the Weissman School of Arts and Sciences at Baruch College/CUNY. "It's a totally different attitude in what we expect as a society."

I know which attitude I think represents the best investment in a country's future /shrug

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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby Grop » Sun Dec 20, 2015 9:46 am UTC

In France the fee for university is something between 180 and 600 € per year which is reasonable I think. However most classes would be in French.

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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby Zamfir » Sun Dec 20, 2015 3:50 pm UTC

I went to a school that had a fair stream of american bargain hunters, and to be blunt: as a group, they were not the best international students to attract. Of course, this doesn't apply to every individual cases, but there were some broad differences with the typical foreign student. Exchange students were another story again.

For one, foreign students are usually good students, confident that they can pass a language barrier and a cost barrier and still do well. Neither applies to American students looking to save money in an English language school. Many were surprised - they had expected excellent English, not the honest attempts of aging academics ordered from above to suddenly lecture in English. That Munich university president sounds familiar...

Another difference: the number of foreign students tended to go up in higher years. Many were attracted by some specialization of our school, which was win-win. It allowed both the student and the school to specialize on their strengths, and it forged links with foreign school with opportunities for our students. The money-conscious Americans on the other hand wanted to do the first few years at low cost, then often wrap up in the US to end up with a US paper.

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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby sardia » Sun Dec 20, 2015 4:10 pm UTC

Zamfir wrote:I went to a school that had a fair stream of american bargain hunters, and to be blunt: as a group, they were not the best international students to attract. Of course, this doesn't apply to every individual cases, but there were some broad differences with the typical foreign student. Exchange students were another story again.

For one, foreign students are usually good students, confident that they can pass a language barrier and a cost barrier and still do well. Neither applies to American students looking to save money in an English language school. Many were surprised - they had expected excellent English, not the honest attempts of aging academics ordered from above to suddenly lecture in English. That Munich university president sounds familiar...

Another difference: the number of foreign students tended to go up in higher years. Many were attracted by some specialization of our school, which was win-win. It allowed both the student and the school to specialize on their strengths, and it forged links with foreign school with opportunities for our students. The money-conscious Americans on the other hand wanted to do the first few years at low cost, then often wrap up in the US to end up with a US paper.

Is that why they expect only 40% to stay, or are you saying the percentage who stay are even lower?(10-20%)

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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby Zamfir » Sun Dec 20, 2015 5:27 pm UTC

40% is about the number for the Netherlands, might be similar for Germany. That's graduated students, it doesn't count students who left before the end of their studies. I would expect much lower numbers for Americans than the average number, especially for Americans for whom cost was the main driver. Keep in mind that foreign students also include, say, someone from Innsbruck for whom Munchen is actually closer than Wien.

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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby Lazar » Mon Dec 21, 2015 4:11 am UTC

Exit the vampires' castle.

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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby Tyndmyr » Mon Dec 21, 2015 2:25 pm UTC

Zamfir wrote:I went to a school that had a fair stream of american bargain hunters, and to be blunt: as a group, they were not the best international students to attract. Of course, this doesn't apply to every individual cases, but there were some broad differences with the typical foreign student. Exchange students were another story again.


This doesn't surprise me. We've had a lot of people in the US focus on box-checking. Check the degree box, get a good job, they think. It doesn't usually work out well, but it's a thing that people have been chasing for a while. If the priority is on avoiding cost(or avoiding work, as the "party school" idea shows), well...yeah, there's gonna be a skew there. Managing cost is fine, but you have to balance that somewhat.

Education is kind of in a wierd state right now...you've got everything from online colleges that are just shy of a diploma mill to degrees so focused on ivory tower interests that they prepare one poorly for the workplace. That it works at all is kind of amazing.

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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby sardia » Mon Dec 21, 2015 3:00 pm UTC

Are you claiming that on average I can get the same value out of an employee if he's not college educated?

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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby Tyndmyr » Mon Dec 21, 2015 3:01 pm UTC

sardia wrote:Are you claiming that on average I can get the same value out of an employee if he's not college educated?


That's not really the claim, no.

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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby morriswalters » Mon Dec 21, 2015 3:54 pm UTC

For one, foreign students are usually good students, confident that they can pass a language barrier and a cost barrier and still do well. Neither applies to American students looking to save money in an English language school. Many were surprised - they had expected excellent English, not the honest attempts of aging academics ordered from above to suddenly lecture in English
This shouldn't be surprising. Only four languages are spoken routinely in the Northern Hemisphere, English, Spanish, French and maybe Portuguese. And only two of those would be what you could consider common, English and Spanish. This isn't the Continent. And foreign languages suffer as a result in the US, particularly in K through 12. You don't get the confidence that comes from being in many unfamiliar language experiences.


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