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Comment: Re:First Amendment implications? (Score 1) 646

by JDAustin (#47266479) Attached to: Washington Redskins Stripped of Trademarks

It's a equal protection issue. The government is arbitrarily deciding what is "good" speech from what is "bad" speech. In this case it gives what it deems "good" speech protections under trademark law.

It starts with the Redskins. What happens when it denies a trademark to a maker of a product because while that product may be legal, its deemed "bad" by government bureaucrats? Cigarettes? Soda? Fast-food?

Comment: Re:Fucking Bush! (Score 2) 272

See...I never saw the guy as a OK dude. When he has both his opponents (2004 Senate, Blair Hull in primary, Jack Ryan in general) sealed divorce records unsealed...he showed he playes very dirty politics. You knew he was more slimy the most politicians...it's people bought the whole Hope and Change con.

Comment: Re:Time to become a better shopper (Score 5, Informative) 211

by JDAustin (#47116641) Attached to: Amazon Confirms Hachette Spat Is To "Get a Better Deal"

Was hatred of Standard Oil irrational?

Actually, it was somewhat.

In 1865, the price of kerosene was 58 cents/gallon and Standard oil had almost no share of the market. By 1870, Standard Oil had a 4% share of the market and kerosene prices were at 26cents/gallon. In 1880, Standard had a 90% share of the market. Kerosene prices were now at 9cents a gallon. After a decade of 90% market share, kerosene prices were down to 7cents/gallon.

Why? Efficiency.

Rockefeller did such things as purchasing entire forests so he could make his own barrels. The result is a barrel price drop from $3 to $1. Rockefeller also offered guaranteed daily traffic to the railroads using Standard-owned cars, loaded and unloaded in Standard owned facilities. The result was a lowering of transport costs from $900k per trip to $300k per trip.

When it came to take-overs of competitors, Rockefeller opened the books and made a reasonable offer as he wanted talent and assets. If they refused, then he would start undercutting on price (while still turning a profit).

Now Standard Oil wasn't broken up until 1911, but due to competitors copying Rockefellers methods, its market share was at 65% and falling. Standard Oil didn't stop competition, it only forced them to become better.

Comment: Re:painted into a corner... (Score 1) 403

by JDAustin (#47053759) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Can <em>Star Wars Episode VII</em> Be Saved?

The proper viewing order is
4 - A New Hope
5 - Empire Strikes Back
2 - Attack of the Clones
The Clone Wars tv series
3 - Revenge of the Sith
6 - Return of the Jedi

Why?

First off, in this order Phantom Menace is unneeded (think about it). Without Ep1, Jar Jar is a slightly annoying background character. We first meet Anakin and Padme when they are proper ages. And none of that midichlorine crap. Now when Empire ends in the cliff hanger, we go right into the entire back story of Darth Vadar. The emperor, who's shown only a little in Empire, is properly revealed.

The Clone Wars series, after a rough first season, expands on the jedi we see killed due to Order 66. The Clone Wars gives Revenge of the Sith the emotional gravitas it was missing. Finally, seeing the backstory of Vadar right before Return of the Jedi makes RotJ a better film.

Are their plot holes still? Yea (r2d2 w/ jets, Padme mentioning her mother, etc). But it just works.

Comment: Re:BOO FUCKING HOO! (Score 0, Troll) 338

by JDAustin (#46875741) Attached to: How the USPS Killed Digital Mail

That whole 70year pre-pay is bullshit. How about reading a few facts from the Congressional Research Service -

        "The confusion over 75 years may be due to an "accounting" and not an "actuarial or funding" issue. They only have to fund the future liability of their current or former workforce. This would include some actuarial estimate about the mortality rates of their current workers (I.e. how long they live). So a 25 year old worker would have an average life expectancy (from birth) of 78.7 years. Thus, they would have to project future retiree health benefits for this individual up to about 54 years in the future.

        But for accounting purposes they must estimate the future liability over a 75 year period (according to OPM financial accounting guidelines). In this case, they would make some assumptions about new entrants into the workforce and addresses your second question.

        Theoretically, these new entrants could include someone who is not born yet. While they have to account for these future liabilities on their financial statements they do not have to fund them if they are not related to their current or former workforce."

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