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Comment: Re:The taxpayers are not Apples sugardaddy (Score 1) 288

by MadCow42 (#46421561) Attached to: How Ireland Got Apple's $9 Billion Australian Profit

No, I'm not arguing that Apple shouldn't be paying more taxes. Not just Apple, but many large, profitable companies that don't pay much or any tax should pay more.

However, the problem is NOT WITH APPLE. It's with the laws that let them do this. Fix the damn laws, don't blame the companies that use the current laws to ensure they do THEIR job properly (i.e. make money).

Comment: Apple is not a charity (Score 4, Insightful) 288

by MadCow42 (#46418455) Attached to: How Ireland Got Apple's $9 Billion Australian Profit

Apple - nor any corporation - is not a charity. It's not their job to pay more taxes than they legally have to. Their job is specifically the opposite - generate as much value for shareholders as they can.

Any company that pays more than they have to by law should be questioned, or the shareholders should revolt. Actually... I can't think of any example of one that does, intentionally at least.

So - the issue is NOT with Apple - TFS even says that the Australian tax office agrees this is all above board - but the issue is with their tax system. It's structured to allow that, intentionally or not. There are all kinds of tax incentives in the world, and they're all there to encourage the right mix of business development and growth that the region needs. Essentially, tax is used as an incentive to offset the disadvantages that would otherwise naturally be there (labor cost, non-ideal locations, skill levels, etc.).

Don't be mad at Apple... EVERY company does this. Haters be hat'n, I guess. :)

Comment: Opting out... (Score 2) 141

by MadCow42 (#46370569) Attached to: Live Q&A With Ex-TSA Agent Jason Harrington

I travel FREQUENTLY, and always opt out of the naked scanners at the airport... partially because of safety concerns, partly because of my view that they're security theatre and ineffective, and partly in protest. After all - as inconvenient as a hand pat-down is, I KNOW that won't give me cancer in 20 years. 4-5 scans a week or more over 20 years... what's that going to do to me?

Question: do the TSA agents hate me? :)

Comment: Re: And in other news... (Score 2, Interesting) 506

by MadCow42 (#46359195) Attached to: Quebec Language Police Target Store Owner's Facebook Page

I'd actually say that being a native English speaker is a DISADVANTAGE overall. You come to believe that the world must speak in your language, and never make any personal investment in learning the language (or culture) of another land. I am a native English speaker, and felt "disabled" when I live in Europe amongst people that routinely spoke 4-5 languages fluently (including English). Simply growing up with exposure to those languages is enough to help diversify their brain... and in my experience, their outlook on the world as well.

The world is not nearly as US-centric or English-centric as most of us believe.

Comment: Search efficiency may be a problem (Score 1) 274

by MadCow42 (#45061385) Attached to: Could IBM's Watson Put Google In Jeopardy?

I'm guessing that an AI-type search would be MUCH more computationally intensive than a Google PageRank search (just guessing). I'm curious how the cost of providing that search would affect the profitability or commercial viability of using Watson technology for mass searching.

Remember, to fuel a single searcher on Jeopardy it required racks of equipment. When you're making a few pennies a search - maybe - it might be some time until that equation makes sense.

Comment: I guess the movie "Johnny Dangerously" is banned? (Score 1) 743

It was one of my favorite lines, as Johnny pulls out a revolver with a barrel about 3 feet long: "It shoots through schools..."

Although clearly inappropriate, I'm disgusted that it's now illegal to say certain words... even in jest. This country is falling apart faster and faster.

Comment: Cause and Effect... which is which? (Score 1) 433

by MadCow42 (#44126379) Attached to: Reject DRM and You Risk Walling Off Parts of the Web, Says W3C Chief

Gee... if content is easy to access and affordable, then (most) people won't pirate it. People that still do would have done it no matter what - they're not your customers and you're NOT losing money by them doing so. (sure, it's not fair, yada yada)

But - when content is not easily and affordably available (say, because you "removed content from the web to protect it from piracy"), that's exactly what ENCOURAGES normal people to consider pirating in the first place. Those ARE their "customers" who would have paid a reasonable price for content that they can use in their preferred manner. They're shooting themselves in the foot, which is hardly surprising.

I don't see the idiocy stopping any time soon...

"Consistency requires you to be as ignorant today as you were a year ago." -- Bernard Berenson