4:23 PM yesterday
commented on Cops Can Choke Black People for Free in New York City
We make medical providers take out malpractice insurance to cover them in the event they do something detrimental to the health and well-being of their patients. Maybe we should consider requiring LEO's to take out a similar form of insurance to cover themselves - and the taxpayers who contribute to their salaries - against their engaging in actions that result in lawsuits for negligence, abuse, dereliction of duty, etc., etc.
But of course, that would require an insurer willing to issue such a policy in the first place; I can see why they might be less-than-enthusiastic about doing that, given just NYPD's penchant for generating multi-million dollar payouts on a regular basis.
3:58 PM yesterday
commented on Films That Are Better Than the Books They're Adapted From
Clarke actually wrote the novelization of 2001 at the same time he & Kubrick were co-writing the screenplay for the film version. That's why there are major plot differences between the two: for example, Discovery being sent to Saturn in the novel, versus to Jupiter in the film, because during production of the visual effects Kubrick was never able to recreate Saturn's rings to his satisfaction and so had to alter the script when he decided to use Jupiter instead. But, by that time Clarke had already sent the novel in to his British publisher and it was in the process of being printed, so there was no way to incorporate many of the deviations Kubrick had implemented during shooting.
commented on Should NASA Name a Telescope After a Dead Guy Who Persecuted Gay People In the 1950s?
This is personally a toughie for me. On the one hand, I fully appreciate why members of a community once persecuted by Webb & his fellow bureaucrats might take issue with his being memorialized in this fashion; just as I accept the criticism by token of his non-scientific credentials. On the other hand, had it not been for Webb's administrative and D.C. insider skills, we might not have ever gotten to the moon. But, on the other-other hand, NASA during this same time period was literally crawling with ex-Nazi's (including most notably Wernher von Braun and Walter Dornberger, both of whom, had it not been for the intervention of U.S. Military Intelligence probably would have been tried for war crimes), so it's not like there weren't plenty of dirty hands to go around.