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Comment Re:Gas (Score 1) 59

OPEC has been surprisingly stable compared to historic cartels, largely due to the Saudi dominance and willingness to bear the brunt when the inevitable cheating occurred.

They're playing a different game now, though: that shale isn't going away, and the price of producing it is a ceiling on the cartel price.

*All* cartels eventually end by cheating; some just get there faster than others . . .

(And the *real* key to the Debars cartel was somehow convincing people that the least desirable gemstone, the plain white wine, was the most desirable and only thing to put in an engagement ring . . . before that, diamonds were *less* valuable than rubies, sapphires, etc. . . .)


Comment Re:Clinton vs Sanders (Score 1) 310

Because Democrat voters are less reliable than Republican voters. When there's huge publicity and a maximum effort to drag every last unmotivated person to the polls to vote for President, Democrats do better. During off years unmotivated people stay home and Republicans do better.

Comment Re:Clinton vs Sanders (Score 1) 310

That's not it. Mid-term elections don't go well for Democrats, and they don't go well for the President's party in general. If the President is Sanders, that's a steep hill to climb already.

Is Sanders a charismatic leader that can ignite and unify the country? Would you buy a used car from anyone who answered "yes" to that question?

Comment Re:Boycott Hertz. (Score 1) 310

Hertz is already doing pretty bad. Uber and Lyft are a huge problem for the rental car companies. And Hertz in particular has accounting irregularities. They're going to have to redo the last 5 years of their financials.

Their only saving grace is that car rental has become an oligopoly. The Obama Administration allowed Avis to merge with Budget and Hertz to merge with Dollar/Thrifty. Avis also bought Zipcar. The other company in the 3-way oligopoly is Enterprise/National. Car rental pricing has been artificially high with less competition.

Uber and Lyft, and the entrance of some smaller competitors (because the car rental business has low barriers to entry -- really, how hard is it to rent cars?) are starting to bring rates down again.

Rather than simply boycotting Hertz, I suggest using a service like Hotwire. Wait until the day before you need to rent a car and then go to Hotwire. Rental companies can either rent you one of their cars for cheap or leave it sitting on their lot earning them nothing. If there are no good deals (because of high demand or because the local city has a high tax on car rentals) just use Uber or Lyft.

If your company has an exclusive deal with Avis or Hertz for business travelers, your company is overpaying, probably by a very large amount. Do some price comparisons with Hotwire and email them to the decision makers. That would be the worst thing for Hertz.

Comment Re:Gas (Score 1) 59

But you see, it isn't even "oversupply."

Rather, it's "decreasing but not eliminating the artificial supply constraint."

Even today's prices are higher than they would be without the cartel.

That said, the world changed with the Saudi policy of letting prices go below our production cost.

Oh, dear, they'll sell us their oil for less than it costs to produce our own. I'm terrified.

And don't throw me in the briar patch, either . . .


Comment Re:Gnome... (Score 1) 110

Releasing 3.14 might have fixed Gnome issues, but it sure made things crappy for the other desktops on CentOS or RHEL7. Now a lot of formerly useful gnome apps that were used in other desktops like Mate or Cinnamon just look like garbage with client-side decorations in these other environments. At best they don't fit in anymore and at worst they look like rubbish as not all gtk3 themes' CSD works that well.

It's looking like Mint's Xapps push is a good thing because the Gnome 3 apps, many of which were used in Cinnamon, are rubbish now in these other desktops. I'm sure they look fine in Gnome itself, though client-side window decorations are a real step backwards in my opinion.

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