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The ultimate problem with that report was that it dealt with, basically, scenario fulfillment from the western side. In any realistic scenario of significant conflict the west would be in the aggressor role, ie the fighting will be near places like Smolensk or Fuzhou, not over a neutral featureless plain. Any western plane will not be fighting 1 on 1* with its Chinese or Russian equivalent, it will be fighting against a shed load of ground based opponents as well. Specifically with 'stealth'** that is a big deal because Russian ground based radar can definitely detect 'stealthed' planes even if their airborne systems cannot. In a situation in which Russian or Chinese ground based radar and AA has been neutralised it's either a minor skirmish that is irrelevant, or it's been raised to an Existential level- at which point nukes will (have) be(en) used which renders everything else moot.

*funniest part of the report was the guy admitting that a Su35 could probably outfly a lot of western fighters, but it didn't matter because the fight wouldn't be 1 on 1 so another western fighter would just shoot it down. Well yeah, on a featureless plain, without any AA or other Russian planes about to distract western fighters. That exact sort of argument got laughed at when it was the soviets making it 30 odd years ago.

**always been a misnomer, since it can fundamentally only work effectively over certain wavelengths and frequencies

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Re: education, I think the studies showing how much money graduates make over their lifetime makes some people think its a magic bullet and go to college not really sure what they plan to do there or how much it might cost or what their post education goals.

Back when I was a College advisor, I regularly saw students whose goal (quick degree then job because they needed skills to earn more money to support their family) would have been better served by a tech/voc school. If they wanted a liberal arts degree, they could always come back later when they were better positioned financially. 

There's really no right path, and coming to a liberal arts program because you want to is always going to be better than because you feel you have to, or worse because someone is 'making' you.

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8 minutes ago, Amentep said:

There's really no right path, and coming to a liberal arts program because you want to is always going to be better than because you feel you have to, or worse because someone is 'making' you.

Agree completely. Vo-Tech is undervalued. I would not say the military experience is undervalued because the educational benefits are pretty much common knowledge. And the truth is even without a draft the US military has never had a major man power crunch. It comes up from time to time but they usually pull out some incentives that make up the difference.

By far the best way to get a college education is to pay as you go. Becoming essentially a debt slave for the first 10 years of your professional career as my niece has done is no way to run a railroad. The best way to pay as you go is to have a job that pays you a decent salary. And to get that you need a skill. It’s like building a building. You put the foundation down first. Then the walls. Then the rest. The biggest downside to this approach though is you will be in your late 20s when you finally get that college degree. A lot of folks don’t want to be starting their career at that age. Or will already find themselves with families and different priorities. But life is all about the choices we make.

"The man of virtuous soul commands not, nor obeys. Power, like a desolating pestilence, pollutes whate'er it touches; and obedience, bane of all genius, virtue, freedom, truth, makes slaves of men, and of the human frame a mechanized automaton."

P.B. Shelley

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5 minutes ago, Raithe said:

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I think these debunks are missing the point of these posts. They're not made to inspire someone to start a business instead of buying an iPhone or learn a skill instead of watch TV, they're for people who aren't working class or poor to tut-tut at the lazy proles for daring to have a semblance of a life beyond toil. The same people who make these posts could not handle the average fast food worker's job.

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"I am the expert, asshat." - Hurlsnot

"You need to be careful, lest I write another ten page essay on mythology and how it relates to Sailor Moon." - majestic

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It's why I left Facebook all those years ago, my wall was filled with garbage like that, even among the snobs in my own family.

“If we are to have another contest in the near future of our national existence, I predict that the dividing line will not be Mason and Dixon's but between patriotism and intelligence on the one side, and superstition, ambition and ignorance on the other.” 

-Ulysses S. Grant

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The biggest hurdle facing working families in the United States in my opinion is debt. Credit cards are a necessity. But nobody is ever taught to manage them. The smart ones figure it out themselves. But far too many end up being trapped by them. People in heavy credit card debt are making payments on meals they ate years ago. Things they bought they no longer even have. Look, emergencies happen. Cars breakdown. Water heaters need to be replaced. The kids need clothes and school supplies every year. That’s what credit cards should be for. It’s when you use them to buy things you want but not necessarily need that the enslave you. Buying a new TV is wonderful. But save for it. Don’t buy it on debt pay pay interest on it for years. Too many people are trapped to making minimum payments on credit cards. The card will never be paid off paying the minimum. 
 

you guys have heard me harp on this for years. But there was one thing I wish I could make everybody in the world understand it’s the proper management of debt.

"The man of virtuous soul commands not, nor obeys. Power, like a desolating pestilence, pollutes whate'er it touches; and obedience, bane of all genius, virtue, freedom, truth, makes slaves of men, and of the human frame a mechanized automaton."

P.B. Shelley

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Yep, credit card debt is bad, but credit cards themselves are fine so long as you pay off the balance in full every month. In some cases it's a very good idea to buy using a credit card for the fraud protection/ chargeback facility.

But I have a fair bit of sympathy for the average Joe or Jane who is bombarded with ads telling them they have to have the latest iGoogle 12 phone or they'll be laughed at for having a mere 11 at the same time they're also bombarded with ads telling them they've passed the credit check and can have thousands of dollars of credit at a magnificently low interest introductory rate of 3.5% (upped to 20% p/a after 3 months), with which to buy that phone.

'Fun' story, I always paid off my credit card in full every month, which according to a bank manager I talked to later probably had me flagged as a 'bad customer' for being too financially literate and not making the bank enough money. I had got a manually approved credit limit rise once in about a decade, after applying for it. After paying the minimum for two months in a row though I got automatically approved for a 4 fold (!) rise in credit limit. Which was some coincidence.

And was also fine, for me, I just went back to paying off the full amount monthly with the ability to buy a decent quality 2nd hand car on credit whenever the fancy took me. Might not have been so great for others though.

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15 hours ago, Guard Dog said:

The best way to pay as you go is to have a job that pays you a decent salary. And to get that you need a skill. It’s like building a building. You put the foundation down first. Then the walls. Then the rest. The biggest downside to this approach though is you will be in your late 20s when you finally get that college degree. A lot of folks don’t want to be starting their career at that age. Or will already find themselves with families and different priorities. But life is all about the choices we make.

I'm pretty sure that's literally fascism by today's standards. 

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1 hour ago, Zoraptor said:

'Fun' story, I always paid off my credit card in full every month, which according to a bank manager I talked to later probably had me flagged as a 'bad customer' for being too financially literate and not making the bank enough money. I had got a manually approved credit limit rise once in about a decade, after applying for it. After paying the minimum for two months in a row though I got automatically approved for a 4 fold (!) rise in credit limit. Which was some coincidence.

Got a similar anecdote to share... I doubt i would be able to get a mortgage in Australia, as I don't have any debt (to prove I can pay back debt) and not having had a credit card for 8 years, not making the banks any money. Doesn't matter I make a decent living, if they don't have it on print that you are a profitable customer for them.

“He who joyfully marches to music in rank and file has already earned my contempt. He has been given a large brain by mistake, since for him the spinal cord would surely suffice.” - Albert Einstein

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Agree 100% that schools need to focus more on personal finance and "life hacks". Something that helped me a lot economically was not  buying a car. There is simply no need for me when the collective transport is good and inexpensive. Yet it's so imprinted in everyone that they NEED to have a car, even when they have no money or important use for it. It's a luxury for sure, but not worth taking an expensive loan for just to get to the shop 5 minutes faster than you would when walking (or cycling).

Luckily many of the things that can kill you economically are quite inexpensive here. Student loans are very fair here to the point that you should probably get it and invest it in something even if you don't need the loan. Healthcare is incredibly cheap. Except dentists. Bloody dentists. I feel so sorry for people who are unlucky with their teeth.

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8 hours ago, Gorth said:

Got a similar anecdote to share... I doubt i would be able to get a mortgage in Australia, as I don't have any debt (to prove I can pay back debt) and not having had a credit card for 8 years, not making the banks any money. Doesn't matter I make a decent living, if they don't have it on print that you are a profitable customer for them.

I have a CC with like 2k limit, which i pay off regularly, sometimes leaving some used balance after a minimal payment for a mibth or two. Used for some streaming service and occasional purchase via interwebs. 

I also have like a 10k limit within my debit account, in case of some unspeakable emergency, where I could not pull my savings due to some liquidity issue. 

Just work on your credit scores from early years. 

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Just now, Hurlsnot said:

Fun story: I had zero debt until I had kids.

Life choices, then, or was that an accident? :p

No mind to think. No will to break. No voice to cry suffering.

 

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Just now, majestic said:

Life choices, then, or was that an accident? :p

Heh, definitely life choices. Once you choose to have them, it gets pretty hard to not give them everything. >_<

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33 minutes ago, Hurlsnot said:

Heh, definitely life choices. Once you choose to have them, it gets pretty hard to not give them everything. >_<

Pft, because you are weak. You should make them work for everything!

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Why has elegance found so little following? Elegance has the disadvantage that hard work is needed to achieve it and a good education to appreciate it. - Edsger Wybe Dijkstra

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I have one credit card with some pretty decent cashback benefits. I actually use the hell out of that one. I pay the electric bill by streaming service bill, all the groceries, pretty much everything I buy I buy on that card. Then just pay it off. But the trick is you have to keep the balance for the full billing cycle to get the cash back. So what happens is you wind up one month behind on the payoff. For example this month I paid off The charges from the March billing cycle. Next month I’ll pay off the charges from the April billing cycle and so on. The end result is paying a little bit of interest. But with the cash back benefits you come out a little bit ahead.

"The man of virtuous soul commands not, nor obeys. Power, like a desolating pestilence, pollutes whate'er it touches; and obedience, bane of all genius, virtue, freedom, truth, makes slaves of men, and of the human frame a mechanized automaton."

P.B. Shelley

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1 hour ago, Hurlsnot said:

Heh, definitely life choices. Once you choose to have them, it gets pretty hard to not give them everything. >_<

There are days I wish I had had kids. If I could’ve been half as good a father is my own was to me I would’ve done pretty well. But considering how both of my marriage is turned out probably just as well I didn’t.

"The man of virtuous soul commands not, nor obeys. Power, like a desolating pestilence, pollutes whate'er it touches; and obedience, bane of all genius, virtue, freedom, truth, makes slaves of men, and of the human frame a mechanized automaton."

P.B. Shelley

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Given I almost defenestrated a younger cousin trying to teach him basic arithmetic, I'm glad I don't have kids. 

Why has elegance found so little following? Elegance has the disadvantage that hard work is needed to achieve it and a good education to appreciate it. - Edsger Wybe Dijkstra

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12 minutes ago, Gfted1 said:

^Kids teach you patience.

My mother is proof otherwise :lol:

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Why has elegance found so little following? Elegance has the disadvantage that hard work is needed to achieve it and a good education to appreciate it. - Edsger Wybe Dijkstra

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Most of you guys have probably heard of the unacceptable "hijacking " of the Ryanair plan over Belarus in order to illegally arrest a Belarus journalist who has been very critical towards Lukashenko

But according to Belarus authorities the plane was diverted because.....of a bomb threat from Hamas. That is new, playing the " Hamas was going to blow up a plane " card ....

https://www.usnews.com/news/world/articles/2021-05-24/belarus-points-to-hamas-bomb-threat-in-plane-diversion-hamas-rejects-claim

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"Abashed the devil stood and felt how awful goodness is and saw Virtue in her shape how lovely: and pined his loss”

John Milton 

"We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing.” -  George Bernard Shaw

"What counts in life is not the mere fact that we have lived. It is what difference we have made to the lives of others that will determine the significance of the life we lead" - Nelson Mandela

 

 

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Most of you guys have probably heard of the unacceptable hijacking of the Bolivian Presidential jet over Europe in order to illegally [in that case actually illegally, per the Vienna Conventions on Diplomatic Relations] arrest an american citizen who had exposed a load of illegal surveillance by the NSA.

But according to western authorities the plane was diverted because... everyone just spontaneously refused to allow it to transit their airspace. That is playing the "it wasn't forced down, they  could always just stay in the air forever" card ....

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evo_Morales_grounding_incident

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