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Comment: Re:Why lay fiber at all when you can gouge wireles (Score 1) 191

by Obfuscant (#48890433) Attached to: Verizon About To End Construction of Its Fiber Network

I guess Adam Smith was wrong, competition is not good.

Competition is great. For the customer. For awhile. Not so good for the businesses that are competing. Perhaps you've heard of the term "dumping"? That's when a "competitor" can afford to sell below cost just to drive his competition out of business. Great for the customer, until the competition goes away and prices go back up.

We used to have a great small local magazine shop in this town. Borders moved in. They had books and magazines and a coffee shop and ... all in one place. The local shop was driven out of business. Bad for them. Then Borders lost the competition with B&N (and Amazon) and they have now gone away. It's an hour drive to the closest full-service shop. This competition turned out just great for the local shop, Borders, and the customers in this town, didn't it?

Before you lecture me on how I should have shopped at the local dealer to support them, I did, and it wasn't enough to keep them alive.

Cable companies aren't like Borders. People don't buy services from more than one cable company at a time and if they aren't cable customers by now they likely won't become one just because competition moves in. At best, a new cable company can split the existing customer base. That's not enough to cover the fixed costs for plant, and certainly not enough to provide return on investment for over-building the existing system. The incumbent has a significant advantage because he's likely paid off a lot of the investment in the plant and equipment and can cut his prices to keep the new guy from making any money at all. Yes, that's good for the customer, except the customers of the new guy, and only as long as it takes for the new guy to give up and go away.

I bet Adam Smith would have understood that. I bet he'd understand when a company does a business plan and sees that there is no money to be made from competing in a limited, existing marketplace with high startup costs. I bet he'd understand why it takes a company the size of Google to do that kind of thing, and even then they're not rushing into the market.

So, the fact remains, it isn't the few percent skimmed from the cable companies in franchise fees that prevents competition. It's the ability to predict a negative return on investment for any new competitor, especially for the first few years, that keeps them from wasting their time and money.

If you disagree, you are free to dump a few million into competing with Comcast in our fair city and prove me wrong. I doubt I'd switch service to a start-up with no track record, but show me your list of services and we'll see.

Comment: Re:Why lay fiber at all when you can gouge wireles (Score 1) 191

by Obfuscant (#48889591) Attached to: Verizon About To End Construction of Its Fiber Network

Right now, there is no competition, only franchise agreements that limit competition.

It's not the few percent franchise fee that limits competition, it's the knowledge that a second franchisee for the same function would be splitting the available market and nobody would make a profit without raising prices -- and reducing the overall market.

While there may be a few people in an area who would actually start buying services from the new competitor because they aren't the existing company, they aren't enough to cover the fixed costs of running a second cable company in that area. If one cable company has 50% saturation (half the available consumers), then a second company can plan on splitting that number with the existing company and you can't profit if you have only 25% saturation. Not without raising rates. The fixed costs for plant as services are just too high.

Comment: Re:I want silent vehicles (Score 1) 789

by Obfuscant (#48887353) Attached to: Fake Engine Noise Is the Auto Industry's Dirty Little Secret

Tires rolling on pavement make noise. There's no reason to add to it.

Not very much noise, and if the car is already slowing to stop at an intersection or to make a turn, that tire noise is very low. Below the other noises on the street. I've been on the streets, both as a pedestrian and a bicyclist, and had an electric car sneak up on me from behind before, and I know it isn't the safest way to run things.

There is no reason to make a vehicle that can kill someone who mistakenly steps in front of it as quiet as possible. You might notice that trucks (even those with diesel engines that make considerable noise) are usually equipped with backup alarms to create noise to alert people in the area that he's backing up.

The demand for silence on the streets is ridiculous, and the claim that the next guy makes about billions of people living on the streets needing absolute silence even more so.

Comment: Re:Steve Scalise did NOT speak to KKK group (Score 1) 413

it's not guilt by association. When you address a group of racists and claim to be David Duke

You're lying again. He didn't claim to be David Duke, he claimed to be "David Duke without all the baggage". Without all the baggage. All the baggage. That baggage includes a lot of stuff, not just the one or two things you want to pretend it does.

He also said: "I didn't know who all of these groups were, and I detest any kind of hate group", and "For anyone to suggest that I was involved with a group like that is insulting and ludicrous." The latter covers your attempts pretty well.

Just addressing a convention does NOT create an association. This is the same kind of nonsense that McCarthy used to find communists, and if it applies to Scalise then it applies to Obama and Biden and a lot of other people for their associations, too.

And you don't have to be a KKK member to be a racist which is basically what he was implying when he said he was "David Duke without the baggage" I'm an independent.

No, he was SAYING exactly the OPPOSITE. "Without all the baggage". ALL. You keep trying to hang baggage on him that he never had in the first place.

And could you please make some attempt at punctuation so we know where one sentence ends and the next begins?

Not an ideologue like you.

I don't know what you think you know about me, but I'm simply pointing out 1) your lies (about Byrd) and 2) your hypocrisy (by accepting guilt by association as valid against Scalise but not when it comes to Obama.) That's not being an "ideologue", that's being honest.

so your assumption the I hate Republicans and don't hate Democrats is way out in left field.

Your repeated attempts at trying to hang labels on a Republican and ignoring the same kinds of actions when it comes to a Democrat implies otherwise. I'm trying to get you to treat both the same but you seem unwilling to do that. I'd prefer it if you treated both the same and understood that guilt by association is a bad way of judging people, but I'd at least appreciate it if you were consistent in your use of guilt by association.

I have more respect for the racists such as David Duke that are open with their racism than I do for the closet racists like this guy

And the only evidence you have of racism against Scalise is that he spoke at a convention organized by a KKK member. That's guilt by association. Let's try this to see if you get the point. You are asked by a local scoutmaster to speak to a group of scouts about some topic you are an expert on. You happily agree to do so, and your talk is a great success. A week later the scoutmaster is arrested for sexual abuse of some of his troop. Are you a pedophile because you spoke at a meeting arranged by a pedophile? If it were Steve Scalise who gave that talk, you'd be hanging that baggage on him, I expect, but if it were you you'd certainly proclaim your innocence. And only an idiot would think that your talk to his troop proved your affiliation with his crime.

Racism is a primitive ideology of people with a primitive way of thinking.

It's good that you seem to know what racism is, but you've still failed miserably at identifying them or acting consistently in trying to do so. I don't know why you keep doing that.

If you want me to take you seriously when it comes to your alleged identification of racists, then you'll have to be consistent. Either you'll claim that Obama is a racist/homophobe for his association with Byrd and his speech at his funeral lauding the man, which means "guilt by association" is your method of identifying racists and you're doing it with Scalise, or you'll be a hypocrite and let Obama off the hook while trying to skewer Scalise for things he didn't do OR say.

Comment: Re:Steve Scalise did NOT speak to KKK group (Score 1) 413

This is not about byrd this is about Steve Scalise and is admitted associations. He addressed a group of racists

He has no "admitted associations". He gave a talk at a convention. Period. Just like Obama spoke at Byrd's funeral. If you fictionalize an "association" based on making a speech, then you need to fictionalize consistently.

It's about Byrd because YOU claimed that Byrd was not a leader in the house or senate, which was a lie you've been called on twice. Here's your statement:

I know you types like to bring up the Byrd strawman Byrd is not even alive today let alone being a party leader/whip in the house or senate.

It doesn't matter that Byrd is dead, Obama and a lot of other politicians associated with him, he was a strong leader in the senate in many different positions, and he was not only a member of the KKK but organized the chapter in his hometown and was elected to lead it. If someone with such ties to the Klan doesn't create guilt by association with people who idolize him, then simply giving a speech to a convention does not create such guilt.

and he also bragged about being an electable racist

No, he didn't. He said nothing about being a racist. He's done nothing that makes him a KKK member. "Without all the baggage" means without all the baggage. Maybe you aren't a native English speaker and you just didn't understand what "all the baggage" meant, but I've explained it to you sufficiently that you should know now. Continuing this further would only prove your hypocrisy when "guilt by association" only applies to Republicans you hate and not to the Democrats you don't.

Comment: Re:Steve Scalise did NOT speak to KKK group (Score 1) 413

by Obfuscant (#48881657) Attached to: Blogger Who Revealed GOP Leader's KKK Ties Had Home Internet Lines Cut

I never claimed to revere Byrd it is your attempt to put words in my mouth.

"Seem to" is not "you said...". It appears you revere him because you attempt to handwave away his documented history. Like claiming he was not political leadership in the senate so apparently his racism/homophobia isn't relevant.

All I said was that was a strawman argument that you were making ie irrelevant.

Except it isn't irrelevant. If Scalise has a "KKK affiliation" because he appeared at some event sponsored by some KKK member, then Obama has the same affiliation. If you want to nitpick that Byrd didn't sponsor his own funeral, then you can pick from any number of high ranking political leaders who spoke favorably about Byrd at other times.

Also I said he wasn't a party leader in the house or senate. read and comprehend before you post.

I quoted to you sections of the Wikipedia article about Byrd that I previously linked to. Those sections show that Byrd was, indeed, a party leader in the senate, including both majority and minority whip and even President Pro-Tem. Saying he wasn't a leader is simply ignorant; ignoring the facts when they are presented in front of your face is malice.

David duke was know first and foremost as a racist. He said he was david duke without the baggage.

Without the baggage. That means without the negative things attached to him. Like RACISM. Sheesh. Don't you know what it means to "have baggage"?

Your attempt to water it down is laughable at best.

I'm doing nothing to water down David Dukes, and your claim is laughable. I'm pointing out to you what "without the baggage" means in English.

David duke coudn't get elected because he had the baggage of being a KKK member.

Well, he got elected once.

A former one-term Republican Louisiana State Representative, ... He served in the House from 1989 until 1992.

Wikipedia. You ought to look things up before you post.

This guy saying he was David Duke without the baggage obviously means he embodies David Duke without baggage keeping him from getting elected.

Yes, and that includes racism. Most folks would call a history of racist actions "baggage", but apparently not you. You seek to paint a politician you hate with a brush that he doesn't deserve.

David Duke's policies are not policies i would support.

Good for you. Since those policies prevent your support, they'd be called "baggage", now wouldn't they. The only mud you can sling at Scalise is that he wasn't explicit enough in saying what baggage he meant when he said "without the baggage", and since you want him to keep carrying some baggage you can use against him, you'll ignore that it isn't his. Unless, of course, you can provide some list of glaringly racist activities that justify it. No, all that can be produced is that "he spoke about economics at a convention". That's the same kind of "guilt by association" that Obama would deserve for honoring Robert Byrd, so either you accept that Obama is a racist KKK sycophant or you are a hypocrite.

Comment: Re:Steve Scalise did NOT speak to KKK group (Score 1) 413

by Obfuscant (#48880677) Attached to: Blogger Who Revealed GOP Leader's KKK Ties Had Home Internet Lines Cut

David Duke is known first and foremost for being a racist and also having an affiliation with the KKK

And Scalise is not David Duke.

So being David Duke without the KKK affiliation is some how better?

Yes, I'd say so. But Scalise didn't say "David Duke without the KKK", he allegedly said "without the baggage." I know it's hard to imagine, but that "racist" baggage is part of the baggage.

You can try to explain away the baggage part all you like but it is clear what he means.

Yes, he means he's a politician without the baggage of KKK or a racist history.

no one is talking about Byrd or Obama.

Yes, I am, because Byrd and Obama are a perfect comparison to this awful racist KKK guy named Scalise. Unless you want to call Obama a racist with KKK affiliations because Obama spoke at Byrd's funeral (and even complimented Byrd), then saying that Scalise is a racist KKK sympathizer because he spoke in front of some convention where he was invited is just ridiculous.

I know you types

Bigotry much? "You types"?

Byrd is not even alive today

The fact he died doesn't change what he was.

let alone being a party leader/whip in the house or senate.

Please review the biography of the man you seem to revere. Here:

Byrd served in the Senate Democratic leadership. He succeeded George Smathers as secretary of the Senate Democratic Conference from 1967 to 1971. He unseated Ted Kennedy in 1971 to become majority whip, or the second highest-ranking Democrat, until 1977. ... From 1977 to 1989 Byrd was the leader of the Senate Democrats, serving as majority leader from 1977 to 1981 and 1987 to 1989, and as minority leader from 1981 to 1987. ... After becoming chair of the Appropriations Committee in 1989, ... As the longest-serving Democratic senator, Byrd served as President pro tempore four times when his party was in the majority ...

Saying that Byrd wasn't a party leader is a patent lie.

It was Scalise that bragged that he was "David Duke without the baggage."

"Without the baggage." I know you want to paint this guy with some hate issues, but you need to do better than this. Given the love heaped upon a true racist/bigot/homophobe, you'll need to explain a bit better why someone who gave a speech about economics at a convention is such a bad guy.

Comment: Re:Steve Scalise did NOT speak to KKK group (Score 1) 413

by Obfuscant (#48879483) Attached to: Blogger Who Revealed GOP Leader's KKK Ties Had Home Internet Lines Cut

He also told a reporter that he's "David Duke without all the baggage"

And some of that "baggage" that he doesn't have includes ... wait for it ... I know it's hard to comprehend ... an affiliation with the KKK.

Unless you want to call Obama a KKK affiliate because he spoke at Robert Byrd's funeral and said nice things about him. You know, Byrd, the guy who not only had a KKK affiliation, he organized his town's KKK chapter and was elected it's leader. And who talked about "white niggers" as recently as 2001. And who opposed gay rights and gay marriage.

Scalise has no more KKK affiliation than Obama does. It's a non-story, and now there's a non-story that is most likely an attempt by a blogger who realizes his story isn't worth much to stay in the public eye. He's trying to extend his fifteen minutes of fame from a blog article that merited none to start with.

Comment: Re:I want silent vehicles (Score 3, Insightful) 789

by Obfuscant (#48879205) Attached to: Fake Engine Noise Is the Auto Industry's Dirty Little Secret

If you mandate noise you will never get silence.

Why should silence be a goal? Being able to hear an approaching vehicle is not just a safety issue for blind people, it is an issue for anyone who is trying to cross a road and can't see approaching cars.

Plus once you get enough cars close together you almost can't distinguish them anyway

It isn't important to distinguish between multiple oncoming cars. What's important is that "there's a car coming", not that "the first car in the line is a Prius, the second one is a Volvo, the third is ...".

Just because people have become accustomed to a certain amount of noise is not a credible argument for continuing to emit noise pollution needlessly.

One person's "pollution" is another persons "ambient sounds". The sound of a properly muffled car engine is hardly "pollution". You're confusing the concept "I don't like hearing..." with "it is pollution".

It's MY responsibility as a driver to drive carefully and watch out for possible road hazards.

And it is the responsibility of the person trying to cross the street not to step out in front of an oncoming car. Even were your job done perfectly, they'd still have to do theirs because the laws of physics say that I can step out in front of you much faster than you can stop.

It is also their responsibility to watch out when crossing the road.

Ahhh, ok. Blind people should just sit quietly at home listening to the radio and not dare wander about the streets where they might become a hindrance to you. They can't "watch" anything, so they shouldn't be anywhere that "watching" is required.

Should we also relegate paraplegics to the dust bin because they cannot obey the "walk" signal at a signalled crossing? They can only manage the "don't walk". And how dare they try using cross-walks in the first place. They aren't called cross-rolls, you know.

Comment: Re:Internet cables? (Score 4, Insightful) 413

by Obfuscant (#48877949) Attached to: Blogger Who Revealed GOP Leader's KKK Ties Had Home Internet Lines Cut

So what do you prefer to call the coax cable that carries the internet connection? "The network frobnication string"?

The "coaxial cable", or the "cable television connection".

What's particularly stupid is the claim that it took a "power tool" to cut this line. Cutting standard 75 ohm cable TV cables takes all the power of ... a knife. At worst, a pair of dikes. Now, maybe this guy was special and the cable company used hardline into his house, but even then a simple bolt cutter would make quick work of it.

Let's see if we can summarize this tempest over this awful event. A politician organized and led a chapter of the KKK. He sent a letter to senator saying:

I shall never fight in the armed forces with a negro by my side ... Rather I should die a thousand times, and see Old Glory trampled in the dirt never to rise again, than to see this beloved land of ours become degraded by race mongrels, a throwback to the blackest specimen from the wilds.

He was interviewed in 2001 and said:

There are white niggers. I've seen a lot of white niggers in my time, if you want to use that word.

His bigotry extended to gay rights, where he:

... strongly opposed Clinton's 1993 efforts to allow gays to serve in the military and supported efforts to limit gay marriage. In 1996, before the passage of the Defense of Marriage Act, he said, "The drive for same-sex marriage is, in effect, an effort to make a sneak attack on society by encoding this aberrant behavior in legal form before society itself has decided it should be legal. [...] Let us defend the oldest institution, the institution of marriage between male and female as set forth in the Holy Bible."

This Scalise guy is clearly ... oh, wait. He didn't do any of that. That's all stuff that the highly respected Senator Robert Byrd did.

So what did Scalise do that shows he has "KKK ties"? He was invited to and spoke at a conference that he didn't know was organized by someone involved with the KKK. He talked about economics. Afterwards, the KKK organizers blogged about all the useful information about slush funds he gave them, as if his intent was to teach the KKK about how to use slush funds for evil things.

Scalise no more has KKK ties than Barack Obama has KKK ties because Obama spoke at Byrd's funeral and said good things about him.

Comment: Re:They already have (Score 1) 661

by Obfuscant (#48871735) Attached to: US Senate Set To Vote On Whether Climate Change Is a Hoax

Our control Earth is history.

No, that's not how science works. There are too many changes in too many things over time for a historical earth to be the control. In many cases, changes in things we didn't measure at the time, and many of the things you list we couldn't have measured because we weren't here to do so. A "control" needs to be something where as little as possible is different except for the change being tested. Solar output, surface albedo, atmospheric gas composition (other than CO2), etc.

If you want to use "historical Earth" as "control Earth", then I'm sorry to say you need to accept responsibility for the current problem, since a difference between historical and now is YOU. This is the erroneous "science" you wind up with if you use poor controls in your experiments. Too many things are different.

We also have a pretty good understanding of gases and their behavior, and we can measure the gases in the atmosphere and the gases emitted from our civilization.

This is the fallacy of assuming that small scale lab experiments scale up to global environmental systems. It is easy to design an experiment (with proper controls) in a fish tank. The Earth, however, has all kinds of large scale processes that regulate each other. This is why the first predictions weren't the current predictions and won't be the last predictions. We're still learning new things about the global system.

We can readily disprove theories of lucky socks and umbrellas causing rain.

I'm sure you can. I used those examples because they are examples of "correct predictions" masquerading as proper science, not because you couldn't come shine the light of science on the hicks who held such beliefs.

We can't, however, explain how any atmosphere would be able to tolerate inputs of the sort our civilization produces without some change.

And this is a statement that "we don't understand it well enough yet to disprove a theory with a thought experiment, thus the theory must be correct." Those fellows in the distant past who couldn't explain why the crops flourished when they did were quite happy to claim that human sacrifice was the reason. When it didn't work in any certain year, they could at least understand that things change over time so there could be a different reason the gods were displeased and the sacrifices were still necessary.

It also doesn't handle the problem of similar changes happening in the past (our "control Earth") without our being here to make those changes. It also assumes that "now" is the right way for things to be, when we know that it has been much different in the past. This is a common human frailty. I know of people who built some very expensive houses on a sand spit at a river mouth that developed early in the 20th century, who then demanded that the government solve the problem when the spit started to go away. "Today" is the right way, and if the Earth doesn't agree, we have to do something.

Comment: Re:They already have (Score 1) 661

by Obfuscant (#48871587) Attached to: US Senate Set To Vote On Whether Climate Change Is a Hoax

any reasonable person

When you use that criterion, I infer that "skeptic" (for whichever topic is at question) is not how you define "reasonable person". I.e., an atheist ("god skeptic") would not be "any reasonable person" by definition, nor would "global warming skeptic". The question "what evidence would it take?" is the kind of question one asks only to skeptics. The believers already have sufficient evidence to justify their belief, in their opinion.

Comment: Re:More proof (Score 1) 661

by Obfuscant (#48870901) Attached to: US Senate Set To Vote On Whether Climate Change Is a Hoax

The result is politically and economically unwelcome,

No, the result of science is the result. What is politically and economically unwelcome are the political and economic solutions that may or may not solve a problem that may or may not need a solution. Science provides a result, it is then up to the society to determine what to do about it.

E.g., "science" tells us that some drugs have bad side effects. Society says whether that drug should be approved for use.

Top Ten Things Overheard At The ANSI C Draft Committee Meetings: (7) Well, it's an excellent idea, but it would make the compilers too hard to write.