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Comment: clean hands doctrine (Score 1) 208

by hawk (#47904007) Attached to: Turning the Tables On "Phone Tech Support" Scammers

I am a lawyer, but this is not legal advice. If you need legal advice, and try to get it on the internet, you need a shrink far more than a lawyer . . .

anyway, the clean hands doctrine is a rule from "equity," not "law". It only applies to equitable relief, such as injunctions, not to suits for money

hawk, esq.

Comment: purpose? (Score 1, Informative) 729

by Tom (#47869467) Attached to: Apple Announces Smartwatch, Bigger iPhones, Mobile Payments

If I'd say I'm underwhelmed, it would be a big understatement.

Every major device announcement that Apple made in the recent years was always driven by one thing: It had a purpose. It provided something that was lacking in the world. Not a totally new invention in many cases, but a solution. Smartphones existed before the iPhone, but it is clear that the smartphone market history can be divided into "before the iPhone" and "after the iPhone" - just look at pictures of smartphones from those two periods.

iWatch? I know it was rumoured for two years or so, but in all that time I couldn't see which problem it solves and what meaning to life it has, and I still can't. It seems the Jobs spirit has left, because this is clearly a device that was made in response to the rumours about it, not because someone knew what he was doing.

Comment: Re:Voliunteer workers for the IRS? (Score 1) 246

by Tom (#47853375) Attached to: Protesters Blockade Microsoft's Seattle Headquarters Over Tax Breaks

It would be very interesting to run the numbers.

In government, inefficiency and bureaucracy and corruption cause friction, resulting in only $1 cents of every tax dollar to actually be spent on something.

In corporations, inefficiency, shareholder payouts and top-level management salaries (which have no equivalent in government) cause friction, resulting in only $2 cents of every dollar revenue to be spent on creating goods or services.

I wonder if $1 > $2 or the other way around. I do consider the evidence-free assumption that corporations are more efficient than government to be naive. Show me your evidence or shut up.

Comment: Re:You are a SLAVE (Score 1) 362

by Tom (#47853309) Attached to: Bill Gates Wants To Remake the Way History Is Taught. Should We Let Him?

You BOW to these "experts".

You know nothing about me and yet assume a lot.

You cannot imagine that YOU could be part of the government and have a rifle at your home. Like these "swiss" men.

Guns have nothing to do with it at all. Here in Europe, it is very clear. We have countries neighbouring each other with very similar culture and economy, one of them has lots of guns and the other has very little. Differences in wealth, political corruption or empowerment? Negliegable.

This "I have a rifle, fuck the government" romantic misconception is from a time when the rifle you had was a match for the weapons the government had. What, exactly, will it do for you when the government comes with an APC, assault rifles, drones and all that shit?

Comment: Re:actually it is quite clear, but who RTFAs? (Score 1) 246

by hawk (#47846539) Attached to: Protesters Blockade Microsoft's Seattle Headquarters Over Tax Breaks

They probably missed the parts about "only" and "tasks" because they're not there.

Marbury v. Madison found that the power is there, but it's not in the text. (And as a practical matter, a judge that takes an oath to defend a constitution must necessarily have the ability to determine if a law he's asked to apply complies with that constitution; issuing an order applying an unconstitutional law would both violate the oath and be beyond his authority derived from the constitution . . .)

Furthermore, in US practice, all courts, state and federal, make such reviews. The USC is simply the final, not sole, arbiter for the federal constitution.

And this is all irrelevant anyway: federal income taxation is authorized by the US Constitution itself, not a statute (it's implemented by statute under that authority), while the federal constitution has nothing to do with state income taxation . . .

hawk, esq.

Comment: Re:Misleading Headline (Score 2) 246

by Tom (#47844891) Attached to: Protesters Blockade Microsoft's Seattle Headquarters Over Tax Breaks

Some of the more prosperous years in our history were when the government was not in schools, limited themselves on the roads, did not deliver water and so on.

You conveniently ignore the fact that in those years, that infrastructure was owned and/or maintained by communities, not by multinational corporations with a fanatical profit-maximizing agenda.

Comment: Re:Voliunteer workers for the IRS? (Score 2) 246

by Tom (#47844889) Attached to: Protesters Blockade Microsoft's Seattle Headquarters Over Tax Breaks

Therefore, it would be irresponsible of it NOT to take advantage of legal tax loopholes or tactics to minimize costs.

That is in one sentence what's wrong with our western society. Maximise profit at all costs, dodge responsibilities to the world around you, and then justify it all as being the proper way to do things.

The crux of the problem here is the way the laws are written, so only your legislators can correct it.

The crux of the problem is the assumption that your responsibilities to society begin and end with the laws, interpreted to your advantage as much as possible.

Comment: Re:Hell no (Score 2) 362

by Tom (#47844869) Attached to: Bill Gates Wants To Remake the Way History Is Taught. Should We Let Him?

That's beside the point though, if you had the money, how would you use it philanthropically to make the world a better place?

Grants to existing scholars, scientists and researchers in their fields who are making actual scientific progress, instead of making their lives more difficult by founding some hot shot idea you found interesting.

Someone as allegedly smart as Gates, who spent all his life in a company whose success is first and foremost based on marketing and manipulation of perception could be expected to understand that if you read, hear or watch someone telling his great idea and you're fascinated with it afterwards, you can be sure that you have seen a good sales man, but you have no clue whether or not you've seen a good idea.

Comment: Re:Hell no (Score 0) 362

by Tom (#47844861) Attached to: Bill Gates Wants To Remake the Way History Is Taught. Should We Let Him?

But to understand possible causal connections, timing is most helpful.

If you come across a theory that event A caused event B (via some intermediate links), but you know that event A happened in 1676 while event B happened in 1669, you don't have to scrutinize the causal links.

Likewise, if two wars between the same countries were fought 30 or 40 years apart, you know that it was the next generation fighting and that the cause must have been important enough to span that transition of power to the heir.

Comment: Re: So long as it is consential (Score 2) 362

by Tom (#47844855) Attached to: Bill Gates Wants To Remake the Way History Is Taught. Should We Let Him?

The mayor of my city and the parliament of my country I can elect and their doings are at least partially subject to public scrutiny. Moreover, their primary interest is staying in power, which means at least partially pleasing me.

The CEO of Big Bad Corporation I cannot elect nor scrutinize. His primary interest is $$$, which means if he can earn a buck by fucking me over, he's almost legally required to do so.

For all the faults in our current political system, I'd rather have the former have the guns. And I'd rather have the government control corporations instead of the other way around. In fact, much of what's fucked up with our politics is that corporations have too much influence on politics.

Comment: Re:Hell ya (Score 2) 362

by Tom (#47844847) Attached to: Bill Gates Wants To Remake the Way History Is Taught. Should We Let Him?

History can be interesting, the way it's taught in [my] school is a sham.

FTFY.

I had a great history teacher, who taught us about the difference between cause and occasion, about webs of alliances and interdependences and how they create unintended consequences, and who made us understand why names and dates are important (to figure out the proper order of things and the connections between the people responsible).

If your teacher sucked, don't throw out the baby with the bathwater.

And if you want to refresh, find "Crash Course World History" on YouTube.

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