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Old 07-10-2011, 06:34 PM   #21
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Jason, if I were to say that the earth was round, you would argue that this is only because of restrictive government policies designed to subsidize large corporations whose interests depend on a continued round-earth policy, and that if the free market were allowed to operate unconstrained, the earth would naturally seek out a new topological equilibrium and assume a more efficient flat shape. [/IMG]


I wish that was small enough for my sig
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Old 07-10-2011, 07:37 PM   #22
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I'm struggling to comprehend 20billion dollars worth of fuel just to run A/C generators.
Well, for starters, we've got a lot of troops over in Iraq & Afghanistan combined.

And, of course, those numbers probably aren't directly comparable to what we'd think of in the US. I have no idea what the fuel itself costs, but it's probably only a teeny little fraction of the overall number. I expect that the lion's sum of that figure represents the total cost of acquiring tanker trucks and shipping them overseas, paying the salaries and other costs of the service personnel who are driving the trucks, paying for security, adding in all of the administrative overhead on all of the above, etc.

As a parallel, I'm reminded of the cost structure of our old manufacturing plant in Mason, OH. For costing purposes (when designing products) we had to use a number of something like $120 an hour for shop labor. Obviously we weren't actually paying anybody on the shop floor $120 an hour- the vast majority of that figure was "burden." That's a fancy way of saying that they have added in "our fair share" of all of fixed costs of doing business, which include (but are not even remotely limited to), paying the lease on the land that the building sits on, paying for the building itself, paying the power bill, the gas bill, the water bill and the phone bill, the shop equipment, the trucks, the coffee in the break room, the landscaping, the corporate jet, the big party they throw every year at the annual sales meeting, the office supplies, the massive trade-show budget, and all of the non-revenue-generating departments within the company such as the HR department, the IT department, the finance department, the legal department, the shipping/receiving department, the order admin department, and of course our own salaries.

The problem, of course, is that most of these fixed costs remain the same regardless of how much product we sell, or whether we design a certain product in such a way that it requires 5 hours of shop labor to assemble or 50 hours.

So assume that the burden portion of the manufacturing cost is $95 per shop-hour. If we sell a thousand boxes that required 50 hours of labor each to build, we get dinged by the accountants for $4,750,000 worth of burden cost, whereas if we sell a hundred boxes that only took 10 hours each to build, we only get dinged for $95,000 worth of cost. So despite the fact that the company made a lot more revenue in the first example, we look much better as a department in the second example, since the margin on the boxes is higher.



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I wish that was small enough for my sig
Ok, how's this:
Jason, if I were to say that the earth is round, you would argue that this is only because of government policies designed to subsidize big corporations whose interests depend on a round-earth market.
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Old 07-10-2011, 07:49 PM   #23
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Another good perspective on the subject. One of my favorite people, Neil deGrasse Tyson, once made an observation on some interview that Americans spend more each year on lip balm, than what NASA gets in funding. I think I could do without the money for a few tubes of chap stick to further fund the most important sciences to humanity...
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Old 07-10-2011, 08:18 PM   #24
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All you science buffs here, if the taxes collected that went to NASA were abolished, would you DONATE money to a NASA tip jar?
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Old 07-10-2011, 08:46 PM   #25
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All you science buffs here, if the taxes collected that went to NASA were abolished, would you DONATE money to a NASA tip jar?
If I could, or knew how, and knew it would be put to use and that I wouldn't be alone in doing so, I would do that now. So hell yeah.

They should put a list of organization selections on tax forms (like with presidential parties) that you can give additional money to. NASA should be on there for additional amount. I would give at least $250 each year if that is how it worked.
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Old 07-10-2011, 11:26 PM   #26
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If I could, or knew how, and knew it would be put to use and that I wouldn't be alone in doing so, I would do that now. So hell yeah.
Please don't feed the troll.

No matter what you say, you are wrong. And he has a link to someone's blog to prove it.
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Old 07-10-2011, 11:58 PM   #27
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NASA did not invent velcro.
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Old 07-11-2011, 01:09 AM   #28
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Ok, fine. I threw Velco in there because I couldn't think of anything else off-hand (and most people believe it, along with Tang.)

Technically, they didn't invent geostationary satellites, either. Arthur C. Clarke (yes, the sci-fi writer) floated the idea in the 1940s. But NASA made it happen with Syncom 2.

Wow, that brings back some childhood memories. Not geostationary satellites, but Tang.

When I was a kid, we spent a lot of time down in Puerto Rico, where most of my father's family lived at the time. This was late 70s / early 80s. For reasons that were never clear to me, there was always an endless supply of orange-flavored Tang at Abeuela's house. I don't think I ever had it in the US (to this day), but the image of that little green cardboard tube with the plastic top is as vividly ingrained in my memory as the Hiram Bithorn Stadium off in the distance in Hato Rey, the feral chickens and wild dogs that roamed Fajardo at all hours of the day and night, and endless churro vendors as far as the eye could see.

You simply cannot get churros in the states that rival those found in the little pushcarts on every street corner in San Juan.


Tang, and Keebler Export Sodas. I have utterly no idea why those damned things were so popular down there, but no self-respecting household would be found with the giant green tin in the kitchen. I see them every now and then in the "ethnic" isle of grocery stores here in the states, and in 30 years they haven't changed the package one bit.



I have no idea why they were so popular. The ******* things are worthless compared to the thick, round lard-based galletas that you smear cream cheese and guava paste on.

Aah, memories.
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Old 07-11-2011, 01:21 AM   #29
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For reference, the picture does not do it justice. That can is about 12" in diameter. I **** you not.
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Old 07-11-2011, 01:32 AM   #30
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Originally Posted by NA6C-Guy View Post
If I could, or knew how, and knew it would be put to use and that I wouldn't be alone in doing so, I would do that now. So hell yeah.

They should put a list of organization selections on tax forms (like with presidential parties) that you can give additional money to. NASA should be on there for additional amount. I would give at least $250 each year if that is how it worked.
Good for you. I would donate too, if say they were gonna do something cool, like the recent Mars rovers.

But you see, anyone who wouldn't donate, but would say "ya the gov't should fund NASA", (meaning, the taxpayer should fund NASA), is a hypocrite. It's the same for all kinds of gov't wealth transfer, be it welfare for lazy but healthy bums, or corporate welfare.
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Old 07-11-2011, 01:44 AM   #31
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Originally Posted by Joe Perez View Post
Ok, how's this:
Jason, if I were to say that the earth is round, you would argue that this is only because of government policies designed to subsidize big corporations whose interests depend on a round-earth market.
Still too big, but thanks for the effort.
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Old 07-11-2011, 12:23 PM   #32
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Ok, fine. I threw Velco in there because I couldn't think of anything else off-hand (and most people believe it, along with Tang.)

Technically, they didn't invent geostationary satellites, either. Arthur C. Clarke (yes, the sci-fi writer) floated the idea in the 1940s. But NASA made it happen with Syncom 2.
Actually, when you start looking more closely at the list of things that NASA claims to have "invented," what you'll find is that the overwhelming majority were:

1. already invented, and NASA's use of said item merely brought it into popular parlance, or
2. invented by private contractors using NASA funding (which then had to be re-engineered, again by private contractors, for non-NASA commercial use).

In either case, it's unclear to me how NASA's involvement is in any way essential. On the contrary, the massive inefficiency of a government agency like NASA probably impeded the much more beneficial commercial development of many of these technologies. It's not dissimilar to the influence that the industrial military complex has had on technology, except it doesn't even have the purported necessity of stopping bad guys from winning and good guys from losing (at least not now that the Space Race is over, and probably not during the Space Race either).

The fact that NASA may be one of the slightly less inefficient government agencies is not a good argument for its existence.
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Old 07-11-2011, 12:41 PM   #33
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Just some milestones of our last shuttle to space:

29 January 1979 Contract Award – Rockwell International Space Transportation Systems Division in Downey, California
30 March 1980 Start structural assembly of crew module
23 November 1981 Start structural assembly of aft-fuselage
13 June 1983 Wings arrive at Palmdale from Grumman
2 December 1983 Start of final assembly
10 April 1984 Completed final assembly
6 March 1985 Rollout from Palmdale
3 April 1985 Overland transport from Palmdale to Edwards
9 April 1985 Delivery to Kennedy Space Center
5 September 1985 Flight Readiness Firing


Meanwhile we have something like 12 private companies competeing to deliver any future flights on cheaper, newer, innovated solutions...


or i mean, we could all just drive VW beetles and call it a day.
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Old 07-12-2011, 12:30 AM   #34
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...and those aren't even hooked up!
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Old 07-12-2011, 12:39 AM   #35
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In for Kotomileto tear this text apart
I missed this the first time (there I go not reading the whole thread before replying again).

It's not Arabic, and the letters aren't connected anyway so I'm not going to even try to sound it out, lol. For all I know it's Pashtu and backwards (left-to-right).

Plus Joe mentioned "Arabs" and Hamid Karzai like the two are related somehow...
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Old 07-12-2011, 12:48 AM   #36
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My grandmother used to put Tang in her vodka and make a redneck screwdriver. lol. Grandmama is a tough old bird.
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Old 07-12-2011, 12:53 AM   #37
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It's not Arabic, and the letters aren't connected anyway so I'm not going to even try to sound it out, lol. For all I know it's Pashtu and backwards (left-to-right).
It's Pashtu and Dari, as composed by the first online translators I happened to stumble across.

Quote:
Plus Joe mentioned "Arabs" and Hamid Karzai like the two are related somehow...
Well, brown people, anyway.
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Old 07-12-2011, 12:57 AM   #38
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lol @ brown people.

You need better translators, Joe. Even if that was Arabic it's unreadable as is. Google translate works passably well (Hint - Dari = Persian in Google trans).
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Old 07-13-2011, 12:45 PM   #39
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since it's "leased" that's the reason we can't build and permanent structures to reduce costs (i.e insulation to reduce A/C costs.)
I was thinking about this last night for some reason.

Brigadier General Anderson was actually proposing that once the tents has been erected, they be sprayed with two-part insulating foam. Granted, this would hamper the re-deployment capabilities of the tents, but from what I gather, many / most of your camps tend to be semi-permanent. IOW, once deployed, the camp tends to stay in one play for a while.

The concept, then, was that the net energy savings would far outweigh the loss of mobility of the structure, and justify its abandonment at the end of the operation. (One assumes that the Afghans would not complain about a bunch of insulated tents being left behind for their use once we were done with them.)
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Old 07-13-2011, 10:46 PM   #40
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You folks use too much logic.

Profit motive mixed with governing has been with us since Mary ***** out Baby Jesus in the Manger-O-Holiness, likely even before. It has made our country great, and suck sweaty Arab ***** all at the same time.

Good post Joe.... certainly better than mine.
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