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The Steakhouse at Circus Circus. High end food, low end venue

We had dinner last night at The Steak House at Circus Circus. High end, old school steak house with  excellent waiters and food. The “petite” steaks were at least a pound each!

Circus Circus itself was built in 1963 is aging, not well-maintained, has signs in parking lots and hotels saying warning warning danger danger, watch your valuables and lock up everything. It also has Adventuredome, with short circus acts and a bazillion video and arcade games, plus the steak house, which is one of the best in Vegas.

It’s so low-end the doors to the main lobby don’t open automatically, was paid for long ago, sits on the north end of The Strip on a whopping 63 acres, and judging from the crowds last night, still makes steady money.

Contrast the warning signs at Circus Circus to a high-end place like Wynn, which has no such signs. However, anyone attempting to break into a car or do any kind of violence at Wynn will almost certainly be confronted with armed ex-military security.

Whatever you want in Vegas is here. $40 a night rooms? No problem. $10,000 a night rooms? Step right up.

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Military veterans, PTSD, and heroin

Just heard about the tragic death at 28 of a vet with PTSD who overdosed on heroin. That’s way too early to die. He leaves a heartbroken family.

We treat our vets badly. Deaths like these happen too often and are not isolated instances, they are a societal problem. The rate of addiction to alcohol and drugs is much higher in those with PTSD, no doubt because they are self-medicating.

I was strung out on meth in my late teens. I don’t know why some of us die too young and others manage to survive addictions.

A song about addiction from a guy who survived it.

“I can quit
Let me finish what I got
After all, this stuff
Sure costs a lot
Then I’ll get my feet
Back on the ground

You know I’m still
As crazy as a loon
Even though I don’t run out
And cop a spoon
But thank the good lord
God, I had enough.”

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How would driverless Uber cabs even work in Vegas?

Following up my  previous post about the certain chaos if Headless Uber cars try to pick up clubgoers in Los Angeles. I was thinking about Vegas, where I live now. Having a driverless cab take you from, say, the airport to a casino hotel on The Strip or Downtown, would almost certainly be problematic.

I’ll use two examples The Golden Nugget downtown and Caesar’s Palace on The Strip.

The address of The Golden Nugget is 129 Fremont Street Experience. However, that is a canopied walk street. To check in, you enter on S. Casino Center Rd. How will a driverless car know a) not to drive on a walk street and b) that the actual entrance to a casino isn’t its address?

Caesar’s Palace is a ginormous 34 acres. Its address is 3570 S Las Vegas Blvd. Will a Headless Uber car know enough to drive in the driveway to drop the passenger off or will it simply stop on The Strip itself to let the passenger out, creating a traffic jam. How about if a passenger wants to go to the Forum Shops at Caesar’s (not shown in photo)? How will it know where to drop off for any of the other stores, restaurants, and facilities at Caesar’s. After dropping off a passenger, the driverless car will then need to find its way out through a maze of twisty roads and driveways that are always crowded. Good luck with that.

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Driverless Uber cars will create chaos in cities

The blogger at Up In The Valley in Los Angeles drives for Uber and says driverless Uber cars will create chaos because they won’t – and can never – know the unspoken rules. For example, West Hollywood clubs have two and only two precisely parking spots, one for taxis, one for valets. There’s no way a driverless car can handle picking up clubbers without clogging streets.

Enter the Headless Uber. That sleek grey Volvo with the radar/camera array on the roof is going to proceed exactly to the address entered on the app. A third of the time, the pin drop is on the wrong side of the street, or in the service alley. No matter, Headless Uber is going to the pin and it’s going to stop and wait right there…and wait, in the only available place, the street itself. The only alternative is to circle the block until the single space loading zone in front of Pump opens up. For how long, 10 minutes? Twenty?

Also, let’s say Headless Uber it pulls into the valet spot, waits for its human, who decided to take Lyft and forget to cancel the ride. What then? Or maybe the human did cancel the ride. Will Headless Uber just stay in the valet spot until it it told to go elsewhere?

It won’t respond to honking, valet parkers waving LED flashlights, outcries of irritation or obscene gestures. With that simple act of traffic obedience, lane one of Santa Monica Blvd. will disappear, from Doheny to La Cienega, so Uber Technologies, Inc. may defend itself from civic injunctions for being a serial traffic scofflaw. Lane two is going to have carry the rest of the thru traffic, the cabs, the limousines, and the old school Ubers manned by second-jobbing drivers doing night work. The Social Contract in Los Angeles will be put to the test.

Plus, driverless in cities are nowhere near being ready.

At a holiday dinner, I asked a teacher of robotics if she would be willing to beta-test a headless Uber without a steering wheel-grabbing back-up driver at the ready.

Her answer was unhesitant: No.

“I know from experience all the things which can go wrong.”

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Let’s review the train wreck that was the Clinton campaign

Wikileaks published emails showing the Clinton campaign deliberately tried to influence the Republican primary so an extreme candidate would be chosen. Presumably they thought Bush or Rubio would be harder to beat than Trump, Cruz, or Carson. That worked out well, didn’t it?

Biden says Hillary never really figured out why she wanted to run, which begs the question, then why did she run?

The campaign was run by a database program called Ada. Ada was right about some things and completely wrong about Rust Belt voters. Computer programmers have a phrase for this, “Garbage In, Garbage Out.”

Her campaign was repeatedly told by her own staffers on the ground in the Midwest and by Sanders’ staffers that Trump was gaining fast. They were told to STFU.

Hillary strategy was to separate Trump from the Republican Party and attack him personally. This was so they would not alienate mythical Republicans in the suburbs and made it impossible for Clinton to side with the traditional base of the Democratic Party, the working class, which Trump then grabbed.

The cynical triangulation strategy of ignoring the base to appeal to other voters was devised by the Clintons. It was always a rotten strategy and just blew up in their faces.

Part of her pitch was she would run a super competent campaign. Instead, it was one of the worst in modern history.

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