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Comment Re:Wrong people to strip (Score 1) 469

The US has the most accessible and permissive immigration laws in the world.

To the point of treating every tourist at the border as a potential legal or illegal immigrant. It's always amusing to see a CBP agent at immigrations at the airport bewildered to the idea that someone might actually look forward to go back to their home country other than the US after their holidays....

Comment Re:Yeah, nah. (Score 1) 469

Well, if you interpose the entire Fedex package tracking approach, you'd have to put them on conveyor belts and run them through distribution facilities.

Well, you know, I'm from an area where exactly that has already been done some 70 years ago, and it didn't turn out to be very popular. So you can't exactly rely on that comparing people to a piece of freight is only rhetorical hyperbole. It has been done before.

Comment Re: Yeah, nah. (Score 1) 469

Not quite. They need an ESTA registration instead of a visa. "Visa Waiver" is the name of the program that allowed citizens of certain countries to visit the US without a visa (usually bilateral) and has been around much longer than the ESTA stuff.

What your ESTA registration acutally replaces is that white I-94 form that you have to fill out while on the airplane. So the border and costums patrol knows that you're not planning to visit the states with criminal intent 72 hours before you're boarding the plane compared to checking that nonsensical form at your destination airport.

I still suspect the whole idea of that is that after years into the visa waiver program, some bean counter noticed that by that program, the US is also waiving billions of visa fees and the found a way to have tourists pay an admission fee even if they don't need a visa. All under the guise of "modernizing" beurocrazy and moving paperwork that used to be ignored for free to a electronic system that earns them $14 per tourist.

Comment Re:This could counterproductive (Score 1) 119

That may be similar to the situation in Germany.

The state run Met Office equivalent lost their contracts with (public) TV station after failing to predict a severe storm that was forecasted correctly by another TV weather forecasting company:http://www.spiegel.de/spiegel/print/d-21662473.html

IIRC, as a result, the DWD underwent some restructering

Comment Excuse me, but.... "win"? (Score 4, Insightful) 282

Wait....

"Which would make it very possible to conduct a Third World War in which the American people would believe could not be won"

Does that mean anyone in the FBI was crazy enough that a 3rd world war could actually be "won" in some kind?

Comment Re:how about none? (Score 1) 249

at some point you have to stop applying market adaptation. no one wants to submit
a sealed bid to buy a banana or a bar of soap.

But still prices for bananas and soap is still regulated by supply and demand. Just not for each individual transaction.

if i'm going to rely on Uber to get to work, and a lot of people here do, then not
having it cost $50 some random day has value in and of itself.

And maybe I don't want to support a business which relies on zero margins to attract
customers and remain competitive, but then really applies the screws when it
happens that i don't have any other choice.

Well, that's the difference between "supporting" a buisness (which would mean you let them have the bigger cut out of your deal) and becoming dependant on a business, (vendor lock-in). But to start things, if you have to rely on a taxi-like service to get to work, first of all that's a clean symptom of crappy public transport.

Comment Re: Just call a taxi... (Score 1) 249

For most people, a car is a major investment.

Wrong, as an investment is something you do to have a profit in the long run.

For most people, a car is noting but a major money sink, Or, as still anyone and his dog decide to have one, perhaps a "loss leader". So even if being an uber driver does not make enough to make owning a car profitable (what regular taxi companies have to do) it may be enough to reduce the loss you're making by buying a car in the first place.

That's a huge difference and the reason why you can't compare that 1:1

Comment Re: If only... (Score 1) 249

How would you like it if your grocery store had "surge pricing"?

Don't want to rain on your parade, but grocery stores have set their prices based on demand and supply for ages, probably since they were called "ye olde grocery shoppe".

Never notices that prices for, say strawberries go down when they're in season and go up when they are not? Demand higher than supply --> higher prices.

"Sometimes insanity is the only alternative" -- button at a Science Fiction convention.

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