"Real People" are not the ones who decide if MS is used in gov't offices or not.
"Real People" who spent their formative years at the coal face of IT 10-15 years ago are now in a positions of increasing influence if not outright power. They have spent their careers watching how MS manipulates the Windows ecosystem for MS's benefit at the expense of MS's customers.
Sure invading Iraq reduced the risk of a maniac launching a first strike against America but it created far more terrorists.
Something of which there was no risk of anyway since he had no weapons capable of doing it.
Americans are the most charitable people on Earth
Looking from the outside in, news reports about the US really don't give me that impression at all.
How many stones in a metric shitload?
0.15 stone shitloads... which is still alot because of how big a shitload is.
The energy was collected over the very short time span of a plant in a swamp.
No, the energy was collected over the time span of however long the ecosystem survived... and over a geographical area of however big the ecosystem was.
Fossil Fuel represents energy collected over vast areas and timescales. Then compressed and transformed over a period of millions of year.
Not only are we burning it quicker than the feedstock could be transformed into a fossil fuel, we are burning it quicker than we could grow the feedstock given the growing area we can provide.
Earth loses 100kg, the mini blackhole gains 100kg, but from the outside the combined mass of both the earth and the mini blackhole would be constant.
Spying on ally countries as well as domestic US traffic should be frowed on and with good reason.
The reason that spying on ally countries, especially mass spying of ordinary citizens of allies, should be frowned upon is because it makes it far too easy to arrange a reciprocal spying agreements where no agency breaks it's own countries laws but still gets all the juicy intel about it's own citizens.
That's a pretty fucked up argument. How many other industries would you apply that to? Do banks have no right to keep people from stealing the money they hold? Maybe that's a different situation, because it's not actually their money. But what about brick and mortar stores?
Both of those situations is stealing, not copying. Different things
How I live is none of the government's business, unless they have cause to investigate
The have cause to investigate, you've claimed a certain level of income but publically have assets which would be hard to afford at that stated level of income.
Look for people with a Rolls Royce registered who also claim to earn little money? Then what? Perhaps it was a gift from family, perhaps it was purchased with savings.
The point is, an automated database query is cheap and gives a shorter list of people to investigate compared to everyone in the tax durisdiction.
If you have a car whose purchase price is $40000 and you withdraw $30000-35000 from savings in the months before I think the database query could reasonably file you under the low priority investigation list. If you have a car whose purchase price is $40000 and no transactions which match up with it, then you get filed under the medium priority investigation list.
And if you have multiple houses and no income or savings to account for the purchase costs then you get filed under high priority and a human taxman will start an investigation.
You use the cheapest method available to create ever shorter lists of people with anomalies to pass to the next, slightly more expensive filter.