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Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber. 555 posts. No reviews. No lists. No wishlists.


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Well first thing that happens is that Elian Gonzales is left alone to grow up in the USA.

Because don't tell me that particular debacle didn't cost Al 538 Miami Cuban votes.


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thejeff wrote:
NPC Dave wrote:
Hama wrote:
Someone please explain it to me.

1) Get 7-8 hours of sleep every night.

2) Eat healthy, nutritious food in moderation.
3) Avoid accidents.
4) Engage in exercise on a regular basis, 2-5 times a week.
5) Supplement any key nutrients that you can't get from your food.
6) Avoid toxins as much as possible, and detox your body if necessary.

That about covers it. Unfortunately many Americans don't follow this which means we need a lot of sickness care.

I certainly agree at least half of those above are human rights. For example, no one has the right to deprive you of a good night's rest.

How about: No one has the right to dump toxins into your air or water supply. Or into your food.

Amen to that.

Now of course, protecting that right is an incredibly complex problem. Anything can be contaminated by accident, and some chemicals may not be known to be toxic until after the fact. No one owns the oceans or the air in the atmosphere and we can't fully protect against toxic dumping into them.

So I can't come up with a good solution, but I certainly agree with the principle.

thejeff wrote:


Also: Don't be born with genetic problems.

While genetics plays a key role, I am being swayed by the science showing that the right balance of factors can balance out your gene behavior through gene activation.

That certainly can't and won't solve everyone's problems but if you do have genetic risk factors you can try and reduce those risk factors.

thejeff wrote:


And of course, no matter how hard you try and how well you live, there's always the chance you'll come down with something nasty anyway. It's smaller, but it's still there. In that, hope you die quickly so you don't run up too big a bill for your family to pay.

Right, you can take precautions and reduce your risks but life doesn't owe any of us anything.


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Krensky wrote:
NPC Dave wrote:
Hama wrote:
Someone please explain it to me.

1) Get 7-8 hours of sleep every night.

2) Eat healthy, nutritious food in moderation.
3) Avoid accidents.
4) Engage in exercise on a regular basis, 2-5 times a week.
5) Supplement any key nutrients that you can't get from your food.
6) Avoid toxins as much as possible, and detox your body if necessary.

That about covers it. Unfortunately many Americans don't follow this which means we need a lot of sickness care.

I certainly agree at least half of those above are human rights. For example, no one has the right to deprive you of a good night's rest.

Yeah.

Everyone knows people only get sick because of their moral failures.

Strawman argument fallacy.


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Orfamay Quest wrote:
NPC Dave wrote:


6) Avoid toxins as much as possible, and detox your body if necessary.

By the way, anyone who says this is a quack who should be in no regard giving medical advice.

So lead, arsenic, mercury, don't avoid those things?

You really did made me laugh out loud there.

thejeff wrote:

Well, avoiding toxins is good plan.

The "detox" thing does smell of quackery though.

Chelation therapy would be one classic example used in mainstream medical practice.


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Hama wrote:
Someone please explain it to me.

1) Get 7-8 hours of sleep every night.

2) Eat healthy, nutritious food in moderation.
3) Avoid accidents.
4) Engage in exercise on a regular basis, 2-5 times a week.
5) Supplement any key nutrients that you can't get from your food.
6) Avoid toxins as much as possible, and detox your body if necessary.

That about covers it. Unfortunately many Americans don't follow this which means we need a lot of sickness care.

I certainly agree at least half of those above are human rights. For example, no one has the right to deprive you of a good night's rest.


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Nice! I never got a chance to look at it before.


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Heathansson wrote:
I think his dry humor probably is responsible for my dry humor; saw Stripes at an early age.......

That guy was so funny.

"Are either of you homosexual?"

"No, but we're willing to learn."


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All of this is IMHO of course.

I don't know if this is true in other countries, but anytime I see or hear US media coverage of the Olympics, I am informed of which "place" the US is on "medal count". The US media treat the Olympics like a horse race, as if the point of the Olympics is taking home more medals than any other country. As if we somehow "win" should that happen.

It annoys me because that isn't the point of the Olympics, which is individual and team performance and competition. But it also annoys me because it falls apart on analysis. Even if the US ends up with more medals than Norway and the Netherlands...considering that the US has 60X more population than Norway and 18X more population than the Netherlands, exactly who is putting in the more impressive performance?

Remarkably, things have improved from the Cold War days, when the US and the Soviet Union treated the whole thing as a statement about who had the "superior" system. As if the amount of gold medals your "side" wins is somehow a metric for quality of life, infant mortality, personal freedoms, etc, etc, etc...


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I think Richard meant he has 75% of the writing work submitted. The Kickstarter will presumably kick off after it is all submitted.


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I am curious what people here take away from this poll.

When the media reported on it, they typically said half the population believe evolution.

But that doesn't tell the whole story. Breaking it down, we get...

46% of the population are close to Kevin Ham's point of view, if not for the age of the earth, then at least for the age of humans.

32% of the population accept evolution, but believe God was involved in the process. This is an intelligent designer argument, at least with respect to humans. It strongly follows that if you believe this, you also likely believe this intelligent designer played some role in creating the world if not the cosmos, rather than, "oh, look that planet already has life on it let me create some intelligent beings and put them there."

15% of the population accepts evolution more or less as presented by Charles Darwin.

Where do people see that 32% in terms of Kevin and Bill? Or in what is taught in schools? Because Darwin would outright reject that position.

Darwin himself did not come up with the idea of basic simple creatures becoming more complex and diverse over time. The idea goes back at least to classical Greece. It was just that the idea had a teleological bent to it, meaning that nature or a creator had a purpose and it was to keep building up more complex and more diverse creatures until we get to the pinnacle of material creation which is man.

Darwin, of course, rejected any sort of creator and he also specifically rejected any sort of purpose prior to man coming into being. It was all just random and without any purpose until we evolved and now we can think and reason and put a purpose to existence.

So from Darwin's point of view, that 32% are virtually indistinguishable from what Augustine held in the 5th century.


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I didn't see the debate, but I was amused by this evolutionist's summary of the debate.

"In one all-too-typical two-minute span, Nye started out by explaining how evolutionary biologists make predictions. He then veered into the sexual habits of minnows, suddenly jumped to the number of bacteria in the human gut, discussed the amount of energy required for roses to produce fruit, told the story about how his first cousin (once removed) died from the flu, and then bounced back to the horny minnows, with reference to certain fish diseases. All of this talk about sex and germs will make sense if you’re familiar with the Red Queen hypothesis. If you’re not, good luck. Five topics in two minutes, with extensive prior knowledge assumed: science communication in action!"

It was around this point that I began drinking.


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In addition to being buried in he first summary page of each adventure, it is listed at the wikipedia page.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Savage_Tide


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A Man In Black wrote:

Hey, I haven't done one of these in a while.

MagusJanus wrote:
I will state up front some of my information is old.
Quote:

And interestingly, the AMA itself is claiming the United States is going to be short by 160,000 physicians and is currently seeking solutions because medical education isn't producing enough of them.

[relevant link]

If you read past the header and see why there's a shortage of physicians, it's due to a shortage of residency slots, not some sort of shortfall in medical education. For those who don't know, doctors aren't allowed to operate independently (as attending physicians) until they've completed both their degree and also worked for a time as a resident, under the supervision of an attending physician. Most of the funding for the residency positions comes from the federal government, as part of Medicare.

For some reason, that funding hasn't much increased in the last 18 or so years.

From the article you cited...

"For generations, the supply of practicing physicians in the United States has swung from too small to too large and back again."

That's what happens when you try to allocate supply based on central planning.

"the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) recommended that medical school enrollments be increased by 30% over the next decade."

Keep in mind that the AAMC has no clue if enrollments should be increased 30%, or 15%, or 45% or 90%. They are guessing. They may be right, they may be wrong. It is like the Soviet Politburo trying to determine how much a dozen eggs and a loaf of bread should cost.

The smart thing to do would be to not put any restrictions on medical school enrollments and let anyone who wants to enroll, enroll. As far as residency...remove those restrictions as well. Let med graduates work apprenticeships on terms they and their mentor agree upon.

Of course to do this might result in so many doctors that a doctor's wages actually starts to fall due to oversupply. Which, of course, was the whole point of putting in all these restrictions and requirements in the first place. To protect doctor salaries, not patients.


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Yes, you can be too rich, in the sense that you are going to run out of time before you run out of money.

Someone with a billion dollars almost literally can't spend it fast enough in order to get use out of each purchase before they die. Now sure, they could keep buying up prime real estate until the bank account hits zero, but can they really enjoy all that prime real estate by actually spending a significant amount of time living at each location?

They can collect fancy cars, rare art, and so on, but again, just how much can anyone really collect before it starts to get boring?

At some point, the bed you are sleeping in is as good as it is going to get, the food is as good as it is going to get, the car, the house, the private jet, the yacht...buying something even bigger or better nets you little additional benefit.

So then they have to spend a lot of time and effort figuring out who is going to get the money after they are gone.

I am sure many of us would love to have that problem...but it is a problem.


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Maybe we can save a few dollars by not buying the next state-of-the-art teleprompter.


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Dungeon Magazine #97 has a band of skulks and dark creepers in the city of Cauldron responsible for burglaries and abductions. It is actually the first adventure of the Shackled City AP but is easily made stand-alone.


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Bill Dunn wrote:
NPC Dave wrote:


According to wikipedia, the Dutch were the original settlers in South Africa at Cape Town. African blacks had not yet migrated that far south and west. The Dutch slowly expanded east until they encountered the Xhosa people, which are Nelson Mandela's people.

This was around the Fish River, so looking at a map of South Africa(and note I am not an expert) it looks like the Dutch are the original inhabitants of Western Cape and much of Northern Cape as well as that part of the Eastern Cape west of Great Fish.

That kind of ignores the presence of the Khoikhoi people and the ancient artifact finds along the cape.

Besides, it still wouldn't excuse the policies imposed on the Bantu peoples who were subject to them in the areas they could be found in before European colonization.

Ah, you are right, the Khoikhoi were already in the area nearby when the Dutch settled Cape Town.

I am not excusing any type of oppression or apartheid, but people just assume that the Bantu(specifically the Xhosa) were already there when the Dutch first settled. That wasn't the case for western South Africa, only the eastern parts of South Africa.


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thejeff wrote:


The people oppressed by apartheid were originally living there, not immigrants.

According to wikipedia, the Dutch were the original settlers in South Africa at Cape Town. African blacks had not yet migrated that far south and west. The Dutch slowly expanded east until they encountered the Xhosa people, which are Nelson Mandela's people.

This was around the Fish River, so looking at a map of South Africa(and note I am not an expert) it looks like the Dutch are the original inhabitants of Western Cape and much of Northern Cape as well as that part of the Eastern Cape west of Great Fish.

Nelson Mandela's people would be immigrants to those areas, while they are the original inhabitants to the eastern part of Eastern Cape as well as the provinces/states north of that area, with the Dutch being the immigrants to those areas.

Of course the British conquered the colony and oppressed both Dutch and Xhosa but that was prior to the more recent apartheid.


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thejeff wrote:

Nor is a currency backed by gold really any less of a fiat, conceptually. Sure you can get gold for it, but gold is also only worth what people are willing to pay/trade for it. It's not like gold is really a fixed standard that will always buy you the same amount of goods.

This is certainly true, but if you look at all the things mankind has used for currency for the last few thousand years, gold has less "wobble" than anything else.

Everything will be somewhat unstable but gold has been more stable consistently than anything else.

All the people in developed(and undeveloped for that matter) countries desperately need a stable money supply but that is precisely what governments don't want to give them.


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Drowned Ones automatically pick up this feat. Am I correct in assuming that Drowned Ones are not vulnerable to any blindness spell effect because as any undead they are immune to anything requiring Fortitude saves?

They presumably have this feat so they can fight in total darkness such as the deep ocean and reduce their miss chances against any types of concealment.

This is for 3.5 but it probably didn't change in Pathfinder.


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I see people bringing up nuclear power plant disasters, something which I am very concerned about with Fukushima still leaking two years later and many reports of sea life in the Pacific being adversely affected.

I don't think people realize just how much effort was made by governments, particularly the US government, to get nuclear reactors in place. It was a way to "sell" the idea of nuclear fission being a benefit, at a time when people were very cautious and even frightened by the implications of Hiroshima and Nagasaki as well as the understanding that radiation causes cancer.

If the government had never gotten involved, nuclear power plants would not have been built without insurance. How much would it cost to insure a nuclear power plant? Well, considering the fact that a worst-case scenario could result in toxic pollution that endures for thousands of years...

It would cost a tremendous amount of money. In fact, building a nuclear reactor with private insurance may not even be possible. I don't know Japan's laws but I do know that if Fukushima tried to be covered by private insurance, with it being built over an aquifier, near the ocean and vulnerable to earthquakes and tsunamis...the cost would have been astronomical. I do know Japan passed a law to protect Fukushima from liability after the accident happened.

In the US, the government stepped in and said it would take care of this and handle the insurance by making sure nuclear reactors were "safe". And now we know they are safe, sort of, unless of course we get a really big earthquake. Then they might not be so safe. They are also getting old, and in some cases being used beyond their planned lifetime...by a bureaucracy that really doesn't seem to think long-term.

So to point fingers at capitalism and free-markets for nuclear reactors and the harm they cause is to demonstrate that you really don't know anything about how nuclear power plants came to be.


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Gendo wrote:


The bolded part is where I take issue. Insurance is a PONZI scheme...all insurance. It is a crock of crap requiring the able bodied to pay for the infirm if they are not family. How is it fair to those that are fit and able, working hard to pay for his bills and take care of their family and now money to cover those things are being taken out of their pocket to be put in a pool for others to use and they end up not using it at all. Besides until our government stops exempting themselves from laws they pass, like the ACA, then it is a worthless law. Our Constitution states that Congress shall pass no law that does not also apply to them. Every single politician since the passage of Social Security (another Ponzi scheme) needs to be arrested and tried for violating the Constitution.

While Social Security is a ponzi scheme, insurance is not. Insurance is generally a bad bet because most people won't get out of it what they put into it...but it isn't a ponzi scheme. You aren't making an investment hoping for a return, instead with insurance you are paying a small amount in the hopes that you never have to use it.

The problem is that sickness care(not healthcare) insurance in most of the western world has become distorted into something that really can't be called insurance. If Obamacare were fire insurance you could call your insurance agent and buy fire insurance as you watch your house burn down.

Great for the guy whose house burned down, not so great for the guy who bought fire insurance and never uses it.


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I believe the previous owners allowed the public to access the beach, so it was private with public access for a long time.

Then the new guy comes in and shuts off access. A lot of people got angry, but it appears he has the legal right to do so.

Well if Japan can't stop their nuclear reactors from leaking eventually no one will want beach front property in California anyway.


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LazarX wrote:
NPC Dave wrote:

And of course, the final conclusion from Krugman, which I already quoted, as he sweeps it under the rug...until the next big city hits the wall.

"There are influential people out there who would like you to believe that Detroit’s demise is fundamentally a tale of fiscal irresponsibility and/or greedy public employees. It isn’t. For the most part, it’s just one of those things that happens now and then in an ever-changing economy."

Krugman's way of saying...nothing to see here folks, not to worry just move along.

Your built in bias is showing

No Lazar, I don't have Paul Krugman's problem.

LazarX wrote:


to the point where you are actually ignoring text that's in front of your face.

No Lazar, I am not doing what you are doing.

LazarX wrote:


Krugman isn't saying that Detroit's collapse is something to be taken for granted, swept under the rug and not looked at in a serious way. He says as I quote.

So by all means let’s have a serious discussion about how cities can best manage the transition when their traditional sources of competitive advantage go away. And let’s also have a serious discussion about our obligations, as a nation, to those of our fellow citizens who have the bad luck of finding themselves living and working in the wrong place at the wrong time — because, as I said, decline happens, and some regional economies will end up shrinking, perhaps drastically, no matter what we do.

The important thing is not to let the discussion get hijacked, Greek-style. There are influential people out there who would like you to believe that Detroit’s demise is fundamentally a tale of fiscal irresponsibility and/or greedy public employees. It isn’t. For the most part, it’s just one of those things that happens now and then in an ever-changing economy.

I already pointed out how this section of Paul Krugman's text is where he does in fact, sweep the real problem under the rug and pretend the root causes aren't fundamental flaws in his(and others) economic view of the world. I see no reason to review them again, you can just look at my previous post again.

What you have shown is that Paul Krugman likes to talk out of both sides of his mouth at the same time. Not surprising at all, I wouldn't accuse him of being a scrupulously honest person.

LazarX wrote:


Lumping this "Marxist misrule" or "Bad Unions" or "Mini-Greece" IS sweeping important facts under the rug. Krugman points out that Detroit IS a reminder that we DO have hard questions to ask about handling the transition of our cities in a changing economy, and that the world has tried some very bad ideas in Greece and Spain,...

I will agree that we can't call it a mini-Greece any longer, it is worse than that. The Greeks will get significantly more than 16 cents on the dollar.


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Well, Detroit pensioners are going to get 16 cents on the dollar.

Very sad, but at least the banks were willing to take only 75 cents on the dollar, they have/had the clout to get even more and screw the pensioners even worse.

Hopefully other city workers will take note and begin make their own preparations so that they can weather such a storm should it hit them.


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thejeff wrote:
NPC Dave wrote:

I will also mention your 6% 401K contribution is going to be taxed...just not now. It will be taxed later, most likely when taxes are higher.

The same holds true for IRAs.

I hear this all the time, particularly from people trying to sell me on Roth IRAs :)

Why the automatic assumption that taxes will be higher when we retire? Is that an admission that taxes are actually too low now? :)
It's certainly not the trend over my lifetime. Taxes have been pretty stable, with the top rate bumping up and down by a few points, but the overall trend is still down.

Beyond that, anything I put in an IRA now is coming off the top end of my bracket. I strongly suspect when I retire, not only will I be making less money, but at least some of the money I'm taking out of the IRA will be taxed in lower brackets.

Not an automatic assumption, but a very strong possibility.

In theory it is a safe bet because of what you state, a retiree should drop a tax bracket or two or three, and the IRA will be taxed at a lower rate.

But the fact is the government needs more and more money to cover the deficit. Considering it has roughly $200 trillion in obligations it will need to fund in the future, politicians are going to start to get a bit desperate. Especially when interest rates rise and people here and overseas become less willing to lend money.

And there is all that untaxed money sitting in 401Ks and IRAs, carefully tracked by the IRS.

Governments in other countries help themselves to retirement accounts when they get desperate. There is a risk it could happen here.

I wouldn't consider Roth IRAs safe either. Instead of taxing 401Ks and IRAs, they could just start forcing those accounts to buy government bonds to keep funding the government.

This wouldn't happen if the government would cut its budget to balance it but we all know that is not going to happen until there is no other choice.


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NH, when you say this-

"But my total tax "burden" (state and federal combined) is just over 8% of gross income. Welcome to the wonderful world of tax deductions!"

Someone who doesn't understand economics and finances, someone who fills out a 1040EZ and pays a 10-15% tax rate, is going to think you take home 92% of your money.

I knew, of course that wasn't the case, but a lot of people don't understand that. I mostly just wanted to point that out for clarification. Political arguments on tax rates easily get distorted that way.

I will also mention your 6% 401K contribution is going to be taxed...just not now. It will be taxed later, most likely when taxes are higher.

The same holds true for IRAs.


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NobodysHome wrote:
thejeff wrote:
NobodysHome wrote:
And with a flat tax of 20% (far too high; I believe 15% would be plenty), are you really arguing that a millionaire would find it so offensive to pay the same income tax rate as a McDonald's worker that he or she would flee the country? I sincerely doubt that argument. I work in an industry with enough multi-millionaires I'd expect to hear them threatening to leave the country in droves. But they don't. They complain. They lobby. And they pay anyway. As long as it's all fair and above-board.

Not to mention that a flat 20% rate (or even the 15%) would be a huge tax cut for the majority of the rich. Even those relying mostly on capital gains would at worst break even.

And a massive tax increase on the poorest. The ones already working full time and relying on food stamps.

Is that really what we want?

I'd love some stats here.

I make a six-figure income. I live in California. My tax rate is supposedly somewhere between 34 and 44%.

But my total tax "burden" (state and federal combined) is just over 8% of gross income. Welcome to the wonderful world of tax deductions!

Back when I was a grad student, my wife and I combined for a whopping $29k of income per year. And our total taxes were just under 14%.

So personally, making more money lowered my taxes. I see the same thing among all my friends: They finally make enough money to get married, buy a home, have kids, and invest in the stock market, and their tax rate plummets.

So this notion that a 15-20% flat tax is a "massive tax increase on the poorest" requires some kind of documentation/justification.

And I certainly don't mind a simple cut-off: If you earn less than 12.5% over the poverty line for the city you live in, you're tax-exempt.

I'd like to see taxes be fair, rather than punitive.

(And don't get me started living in California and paying more than TRIPLE what my mother does in property taxes, even though her property is twice as big and appraises for hundreds of...

NH, can you elaborate a bit on your deductions?

Because I also live in California, I also have an income like yours, and the tax rate on my gross income is way higher than 8%. It actually is closer to 35%.

See, I don't think making more money lowered your taxes. I don't think your friends making more money lowered their taxes either. I, of course, don't know your financial situation at all, so you can correct me if I am wrong. But I am your counter-example. For me, making more and more money has only meant paying more and more taxes as a total percentage of my wealth.

Let me take a guess though...your mortgage is what is lowering your taxes. Is that correct?

If that is the case, what you actually did was lower the tax rate percentage on your gross income in exchange for drastically raising the percentage of your gross income which you give directly to banks in the form of interest payments. You mention property taxes but don't make it clear if you count that as part of your 8% of gross income, it sounds like you aren't.


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Kobold Cleaver wrote:
Now I wish I was running my game in Eberron!

LOL, you still can. Get a second set of players together, and run both groups through the same adventures at the same time, with appropriate themes and mods for the Eberron group of course.

Kyuss has to be stopped on both worlds to prevent the new age of course.


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One guy who got rid of bed bugs eventually without exterminators used the following tactic...

First, get the bed free of bed bugs, using whatever methods you can, I like the steam gun idea.

Use old yogurt containers and put all four bed legs into said containers. Then wrap the outside of the yogurt containers with carpet tape. Make sure nothing else on the bed touches the floor and keep the bed well away from the wall.

Now any bedbug trying to reach you should get stuck on the carpet tape. If a pillow or sheet falls off the bed during the night run it through the dryer.

I have heard of bed bugs dropping onto a bed from the ceiling so you might want to carpet tape the walls near your bed as well.


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Pan wrote:
It goes away eventually. I remember a year ago when I started back up I was in some pain early on. I remember one day I was on the couch watching TV and my GF was in her office on the PC. It literally hurt to pick up the remote to change the channel. Every time I did I would groan out loudly as I lifted the remote. My GF thought it was comical but I wasn't exaggerating I hit the gym way too hard early on :)

That reminds me of this.


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Dungeon Magazine #141 puts Cauldron and Sasserine on the same map so you can use the scale to get an estimate. There is also a map of the local area around Sasserine in Dragon Magazine #349 which has Cauldron off the map but an arrow pointing in its direction. Roughly according to those maps I would say Cauldron is about 70-75 miles away from Sasserine.


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IQuarent wrote:


I remember the last one we did before we got TPK'ed was in a harbor of wrecked ships being used as buildings, with one huge one in the center that was a bunch of ships on top of each other. Instead of going in and fighting all the baddies, why didn't the cleric just cast earthquake?

LOL, I am right now writing a sticky note for Serpents of Scuttlecove that there have to be innocent hostages spread throughout the Crimson Fleet HQ. That the PCs care about.


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thejeff wrote:
NPC Dave wrote:
Chicago, Los Angeles and Baltimore all have greater pension obligations per city resident than Detroit does. We can't blame all of these cities mismanagement on the "ever-changing economy".

And of course, pension obligations are the thing actually causing problems. They're the only proper measure of how a city is doing.

Your words, not mine.

But those three cities can't meet their future obligations, so they will default or get a bailout, one way or another.


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LazarX wrote:
That's hardly just "sweeping things under the rug".

Which parts of the article are you paying attention to?

"Never mind the repeated failure of the predicted U.S. fiscal crisis to materialize,"

FYI to Krugman...Detroit going bankrupt is the latest materialization of the ongoing US fiscal crisis.

"the sharp fall in predicted U.S. debt levels"

The only reason it hasn't sharply fallen is the US govt extra borrowing to keep the level up and the Federal Reserve propping up the housing market with free money for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

" and the way much of the research the scolds used to justify their scolding has been discredited;"

Krugman ignoring a problem does not make the problem go away or discredit the problem.

"Are Detroit’s woes the leading edge of a national public pensions crisis? No."

Wrong, the correct answer is yes, and anyone counting on a public pension better start financial preparations so they don't have to count on it. If they don't, they are in for a world of hurt later like Detroit city pensioners are now.

"but for the most part the city was just an innocent victim of market forces."

False, I will quote someone else who has lived in Detroit and got to experience the whole thing first hand...

------------
In fact, in 1992 the city was, for the most part, a mega-s***hole under Marxist rule, with a serious decline in city services, rampant criminal activity, racial disunion, and the city was under siege to the point of making international headlines for its Devil’s Night chicanery. At about this time, Ze’ev Chafets published his book, Devil’s Night and other True Tales of Detroit. His book was an accurate portrayal of Detroit at the time. Also at this time, I was living in Detroit’s East English Village on the East Side. I had secured a house in that neighborhood when I was one day past the age of nineteen, hoping to figure out the city and its reputation by making my own tracks and forming my own opinions based on my experiences.

In December 1991, one block from my home, a man twice my size tried to stuff me into the back of a Chrysler New Yorker that was occupied by three other co-crazies blanked out on dope. Using my athletic prowess, I escaped the grasp of my attacker, and I immediately realized that had I not been able to throw off the attacker, I probably would have been just another number in the city morgue archives: gang-raped and dumped in an alley, only to be found several days later by someone cutting through the alley on the way to nowhere. My husband and I packed our bags and left the city the following spring. After ten years, we were done with The Experiment. The Marxism, crime, anti-white racism, tax rates, and lack of stable neighborhoods chased us out of town.

In reality, the city died in 1967, with the riot that changed the city for decades. The decomposition occurred immediately thereafter. My father, a firefighter, worked a 72+ hour shift during the riots, putting out fires while being shot at by rioting civilians. He told me stories about the lack of police protection, and thus having to fight off gangs of rioters and looters by pulling out what is know as the 2 1/2 inch handline, the ultimate firefighter tool.

-------------------

And of course, the final conclusion from Krugman, which I already quoted, as he sweeps it under the rug...until the next big city hits the wall.

"There are influential people out there who would like you to believe that Detroit’s demise is fundamentally a tale of fiscal irresponsibility and/or greedy public employees. It isn’t. For the most part, it’s just one of those things that happens now and then in an ever-changing economy."

Krugman's way of saying...nothing to see here folks, not to worry just move along.


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thejeff wrote:
NPC Dave wrote:
meatrace wrote:
Paul Krugman's opinion on the matter.

From Paul's conclusion...

"There are influential people out there who would like you to believe that Detroit’s demise is fundamentally a tale of fiscal irresponsibility and/or greedy public employees. It isn’t. "
-------------------

Wrong again Paul. That is exactly what it is.

Fiscal conservatives warned for decades what would happen to Detroit if the city did not change its ways. It was the epitome of bad government. But no, the city government didn't want to listen. The red ink could just flow forever. The city Democrats practically dared any naysayer to try and stop them.

Well, they just got stopped.

Krugman's got a better track record than most economists. He's just a bit closer to Keynesianism than to the Chicago School nonsense, so why listen.

And as I said before, this is pure politics, rather than economic necessity. The city certainly has problems, but the bankruptcy decision was imposed on it from above by an appointee of the governor, who overrode the local elected officials. Even though the people of the state overturned the fiscal manager law in a referendum.
What ever happened to the conservative theories about local control?

In April 2012 city officials went to the state government because they were desperate. Their choices were to stiff bond holders, stiff pension holders, stop paying for current city programs, or bankruptcy(stiff all three to some extent). The made the offer to let the state have more control over their finances in exchange for financial help(translation: hope for bailout).

The state agreed.

The economic necessity is either a) bailout or b) bankruptcy. The decision as to which choice will be made is, of course, pure politics. The governor is a Republican, the city is Democrat so the choice is b). If the governor were a Democrat the decision would be a).

If the city had not made the agreement with the state, then bankruptcy would still happen at some point.

As for Krugman, his quote...

"For the most part, it’s just one of those things that happens now and then in an ever-changing economy."

Completely sweeps under the rug that Detroit is just the first large city of many, many more bankruptcies coming down the pike.

Chicago, Los Angeles and Baltimore all have greater pension obligations per city resident than Detroit does. We can't blame all of these cities mismanagement on the "ever-changing economy".


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meatrace wrote:
Paul Krugman's opinion on the matter.

From Paul's conclusion...

"There are influential people out there who would like you to believe that Detroit’s demise is fundamentally a tale of fiscal irresponsibility and/or greedy public employees. It isn’t. "
-------------------

Wrong again Paul. That is exactly what it is.

Fiscal conservatives warned for decades what would happen to Detroit if the city did not change its ways. It was the epitome of bad government. But no, the city government didn't want to listen. The red ink could just flow forever. The city Democrats practically dared any naysayer to try and stop them.

Well, they just got stopped.


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Kirth Gersen wrote:
NPC Dave wrote:
If you want to know my backup plan, that would be my plan to work until I am 80.
A lot of people, much against their will, are getting laid off at 55 and then find out they're "too old" to be hired by anyone else after that.

For myself I know I can't expect to work my current job too long after age 55-60. Many companies do what you mention because they can easily replace the old guy's work with a new guy at half the price.

I do intend to offer to work for less compensation in my latter years but even backup plans don't come guaranteed. In any case I would rather run a small business out of my home at age 65-80 rather than depend on an employer.


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There is talk of a bailout for Detroit, a judge is blocking the bankruptcy and is clearly hoping for Obama to step in.

It might happen, but Rand Paul will oppose it and Obama doesn't get much benefit from a bailout for Michigan, he doesn't need to buy their votes anymore.

Personally I don't think Detroit can renew and rebuild until the bankruptcy happens, so IMO a bailout will only prolong the agony and decline.


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I want to emphasize to everyone who has a pension...

Contrary to what politicians claim...your pension is not inviolable, your pension promise is not sacred, and your pension money is not guaranteed.

Whether a corporation or a government body, your pension is dependent on the financial acumen of the people managing the pension, and even if that pension was promised by a city or state government, that promise is no longer binding in a bankruptcy.

And while the federal government can't ever be bankrupt as long as it can have the Federal Reserve create money in digital bank accounts, it can and will sell you out if the votes are against you.

So have a backup plan.

If you want to know my backup plan, that would be my plan to work until I am 80.

At least retirees over 65 can fall back on Medicare.


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Bankruptcy should be viewed as a way to start fresh. This way the city can ditch the financial obligations which are crippling it. That is going to screw quite a few people, including those with pensions, but the only alternative is to dig an even deeper hole.

Of course, Bank of America is going to get 75 cents on the dollar, while pension holders will get about 10 cents on the dollar. No surprise there.

I hope California and Illinois employees take a good look at what is happening in Detroit and start financial planning in case the same thing happens in their respective states.


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I only learned today that the jury consisted of six women, five white, one Hispanic.

My guess is the Hispanic woman is the reason Zimmerman was found not guilty. That would indeed be ironic, because this case for many people stopped being about facts and started being about racial politics.


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My local news media put a political analyst on this evening local TV news who was blatantly lying about the circumstances of the case. There was no way he could have been that misinformed.


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PC: Modified 6th level Paladin of Freedom using 3.5 rules and PHB2's Charging Smite
Adventure: Sea Wyvern's Wake
Location of Glory: Hidden Shrine of Tamoachan

As the party investigates the stone scale replica of an ancient city and Tloquatcha's crypt, Sutolore hears them from the adjacent room and moves into position to attack. He flies into the room low to the ground, breathes fire catching every PC and Forol in the cone. He then banks to the right and gains a bit of altitude for next round.

The paladin is the first to react, charging straight at the abyssal creature and makes a charging smite attack with his magic warhammer. He rolls a 20. To confirm the crit, he rolls another 20. Adding up all the critical damage including all the smite damage x3...Sutolore takes 67 hp of damage after subtracting DR. One shot and instant explosion, this time only half the party was in range to take further fire damage.


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Anyone have any suggestions?

If there isn't any than I will fall back on the Kreegs from Pathfinder #3 in Rise of the Runelords AP, but if anyone knows of any others from Dungeon Magazine's run up through #150 let me know.


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Lord Khayven is statted out fully in Dungeon Magazine #120, where he appears in the Lost Temple of Demogorgon. This adventure is unrelated to STAP, but can easily be integrated in.


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Troop subtype? I am looking forward to seeing this, I always loved and used the concept ever since I saw Paul Jaquays use it to good effectiveness in M5 Talons of Night.


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I have used touching, which they call escalating kino, in order to convince a woman that I am worthy of keeping her attention. This has been verified in Scientific American of all places.

But for a man, building attraction with a woman is an extremely delicate art. The wrong timing for a suggestion or action, even slightly, can turn her off. On the other hand, if she is interested she won't necessarily be able to pinpoint why she is interested, she is just enjoying the feeling of attraction without trying to rigorously analyze it.


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Andrew Turner wrote:

I'm still trying to understand why you believe an author shouldn't profit from their previous works.

For example, Stephen King published Insomnia 20 years ago. This coming fall he's publishing the sequel to this novel. By your philosophy he should not profit from the previous novel 9because it should reside in the PD), which is likely to see a resurgence upon publication of Doctor Sleep.

Wouldn't he be able to profit on those copies of Insomnia people buy from him?

If the copyright is in the public domain at that point, he still can sell copies, but he has to compete against anyone and everyone else that is selling copies also.


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This reminds me of when Obama complimented Kamala Harris on her appearance. He had to backpedal fast and apologize for that.

The irony was that she had actually complimented Obama on his appearance in the past, and no one thought anything of it.

It makes perfect sense once you realize how people tend to judge other people by default, versus how feminism would like to see it done.

The general default(not in all cases of course) is...men are judged by their actions/accomplishments, women are judged by their appearance. So Kamala complimenting Obama on his appearance doesn't matter, because no one is going to judge him based on how he looks. They might like his look, but what he does and what results he gets are going to be the standard.

But turn it around, and have Obama compliment Kamala, and it brings to that forefront that women are judged by their appearance, not on their actions or accomplishments. This is anathema to feminism, which wants men and women judged the same, that is by accomplishments and actions. So Obama commenting on her looks raises that question of whether her career in office and as California attorney general is somehow less important than how hot she is.

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