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Comment: Re:Zero? (Score 3, Insightful) 53

by jmac_the_man (#46676581) Attached to: Facebook and Google's Race To Zero

... which is a violation of Net Neutrality.

... which doesn't apply to countries outside the US

It also doesn't apply to countries inside the US. The FCC doesn't have the necessary power to create net neutrality regulations, and Congress has decided that they aren't a good idea, so there are no Net Neutrality regulations in force in the US either.

Comment: Re:And where is the news? (Score 1) 564

by jmac_the_man (#46670379) Attached to: Was Eich a Threat To Mozilla's $1B Google "Trust Fund"?

Where is, for example, Microsoft, so support a competing product with $1 billions and to come in protection of basic rights of your fellow citizens?

I don't have a link handy, but Microsoft actually tried getting an Amendment added to the state constitution of Washington explicitly legalizing gay marriage. Their logic went, "Say we're targeting a world class developer because we want to hire them to work at Microsoft headquarters in Redmond.. We're obviously going to put together a compensation package to try to bring them on board. Part of it is obviously "Redmond is a great place to live." If they're gay, and gay marriage is legal in Washington, that's another point in our column."

Comment: Re:Abolish marriage solves the problem. (Score 1) 564

by jmac_the_man (#46670281) Attached to: Was Eich a Threat To Mozilla's $1B Google "Trust Fund"?

Now that comes down to your main point: have the government change from being in charge of marriage to only having civil unions and give the word "marriage" over to religion. Many states already have civil unions that function like that already. But that is not enough: people want to be called married when they commit themselves to one another.

So they can call themselves married. We have free speech in this country, right? They can throw a ceremony officiated by an Elvis impersonator if they want to, and they can call the ceremony whatever they want. (In some jurisdictions, the Elvis impersonator has to be a clergyman. However, there are "religions" that exist only so you can join it so you can say "I'm a clergyman. License me to perform marriages.")

However, what they can't do is NOT have a ceremony. There is no legitimate reason for the government to mandate a ceremony, and CERTAINLY no legitimate reason for them to mandate that if you want to have a close friend perform the ceremony, that the friend has to claim to be a clergyman.

The government has a legitimate cause to regulate taxes, which are a business relationship between the citizens and the government. (They also have a legitimate cause to regulate certain business transactions between two groups of citizens (e.g. a couple and a hospital).) The government can and should separate the tax and business part of it from the ceremonial part of it. And since we're only able to regulate what the government calls something ANYWAY, let's have the government part be the one that gets a different name.

Comment: Re:Abolish marriage solves the problem. (Score 1) 564

by jmac_the_man (#46670147) Attached to: Was Eich a Threat To Mozilla's $1B Google "Trust Fund"?
No church does have a monopoly on the word marriage.

Right now, in every state in the union, in order to get a marriage, you need to:
1. Have both spouses appear before a clerk in the jurisdiction that you're getting the marriage in.
2. That clerk will give you a form that you take to a Licensed Marriage Officiant.
3. The Marriage Officiant will perform a ceremony and fill out the form.
4. You send the form back to the clerk.
5. The clerk sends you a marriage license.

There's no real requirements for the Licensed Marriage Officiant or the ceremony that they perform. Religious leaders routinely maintain licences to perform marriages in the jurisdiction that they minister in, but since the fee to get licensed in a new jurisdiction is nominal, they will get licensed in whatever jurisdiction the wedding takes place in if necessary. Religious leaders, of course, perform the ceremony dictated by their religion, but the government doesn't dictate what the ceremony contains. If you don't want to have a religious ceremony, you can get a Justice of the Peace to be your Marriage Officiant. They are government officials, so sometimes their jurisdiction imposes some light requirements on what their ceremony entails. Most jurisdictions allow regular lay persons to get licenses to be Marriage Officiants (as long as they pay the fee), but that doesn't matter because there are "religions" that you can join solely so you can say "I'm a religious leader. Give me a license to perform a marriage between these two people I know who have asked me to perform their marriage." As long as you pay the fee, you can go that route.

Whether the couple is gay or straight, there's no legitimate governmental interest in making sure a "wedding ceremony" takes place. The government's interest should end at the point where you register your "domestic partnership" with the clerk in Step 2. If you want a ceremony on top of that, the government shouldn't be involved. That should be between the couple and their clergyman, friend, or Elvis impersonator.

Comment: Re:The new Hitlers (Score 1) 564

by jmac_the_man (#46669951) Attached to: Was Eich a Threat To Mozilla's $1B Google "Trust Fund"?

Many insurance companies and private businesses already allow for 'domestic partners' when it comes to insurance, I don't see any requirement there that those partners be having sex.

I agree with your point. However, plenty of organizations limit benefits for "domestic partners" to "same sex domestic partners, with the implication that it's only for gay couples.

You are right, though. The government shouldn't have any place regulating the sex lives of consenting adults. People's business relationships, especially with the government, can and should be regulated without regard to whether the people involved are having sex.

Comment: Re:The new Hitlers (Score 3, Insightful) 564

by jmac_the_man (#46669865) Attached to: Was Eich a Threat To Mozilla's $1B Google "Trust Fund"?

But I have the perception, rightly or wrongly, that nearly every top executive position (even at nonprofits) pays a salary that is not commensurate with the person's work or value to the organization, and that these positions are instead used as a reward for people who the company directors happens to like.

So, I am comfortable with Eich, or even someone more hateful, being paid a high but appropriate salary for doing lots of good work for the company. But if, as I believe, most of the CEO's salary is a reward from the board of directors for being the person they like the most, then I feel justified in throwing a fit if I don't like him the most.

Immediately before being promoted, Eich had been the Chief Technology Officer at Mozilla. He's also the guy who invented Javascript. Do you really think he didn't make an technical contribution to Mozilla's products?

Comment: Re:Politcs vs. Science (Score 1) 291

by jmac_the_man (#46647503) Attached to: NASA Halts Non-ISS Work With Russia Over Ukraine Crisis

US left Iraq because no powerful US corporation was interested enough in staying...

In other views the reason to invade Afghanistan was Afghanistan Oil Pipeline...

People of Crimea have had a referendum and by vast majority decided to join Russian Federation.

If you're going to ignore facts and spout crazy nonsense without evidence, while ignoring THE ACTUAL FACTS, then I can't help you.

Comment: Re:Politcs vs. Science (Score 1) 291

by jmac_the_man (#46645597) Attached to: NASA Halts Non-ISS Work With Russia Over Ukraine Crisis

Iraq is pretty much controlled by US.

This is false. The reason there's no US troops in Iraq today is that the democratically elected Iraqi government wouldn't agree to a status of forces agreement with us. Status of forces agreements are pretty standard, the US has agreements with every country that we have troops in, especially our allies like Germany and Japan. The Iraqi government decided they didn't want to agree to a SOFA, so we left. If the Iraqi government were our puppets, we would have pressured them into agreeing to the SOFA.

BTW, did anybody invited US into... Afghanistan?

That's different. bin Laden was hiding out in Afghanistan and launched terrorist attacks against the United States. The Taliban was supporting him, both before and after the 9/11 attacks. If you go around committing acts of war, you can expect a military response.


Actually, the United States was in Vietnam at the request of the South Vietnamese government, who wanted our help repelling the North Vietnamese army, who had invaded South Vietnam in violation of a UN order. So yes, the US was asked to intervene in Vietnam.

Comment: Re:Republican (Score 1) 138

Posting party affiliation doesn't really help spot the bullshitters. There are bullshitter Republicans AND bullshitter Democrats.

However, the poster who was complaining about posting party affiliation was complaining about how Slashdot tends to only use the party label when a Democrat does "good things*" or a Republican does "bad things*." Democrats doing "bad things" and Republicans doing "good things" don't get a party label.

When a serious organization does this over time, this leads to the perception that "Democrats are the party that do "good things"" and "Republicans are the party that do "bad things."" Which, of course, is itself bullshit.

Slashdot is NOT a serious organization. I think they label Democrat "good things" and Republican "bad things" but leave party labels off the reverse because that will antagonize posters, who will then post a bunch of arguments back and forth. EXACTLY like this thread. All this means is more ad dollars for Dice.

If Slashdot wanted to be taken seriously, they would put a party label on every politician on first reference. Sadly, they don't.

*By good things and bad things, I mean "popularity among the Slashdot groupthink." On technology vs. business issues (like this bill) most of Slashdot will come down pretty clearly on one side, even if the bill is popular among the population as a whole. Obviously, on issues like "Is it OK for politicians to sell Russian weapons to terrorists," Slashdot groupthink is pretty in line with the population as a whole.

Comment: What do you think False Equivalence means? (Score 1) 269

by jmac_the_man (#46163431) Attached to: How Voter Shortsightedness Skews Elections

Also, Fox News is *not* a news channel. They do not do journalism.

But then...

MSNBC has people like Rachel Maddow who actually report **news** in a professional journalistic presentation

If you're making this comparison, you clearly have no idea what the hell you are talking about. As you acknowledge later in your post, Maddow is "slanted to a progressive... standpoint." That's because Rachel Maddow is not a journalist, and her show isn't journalism. Her show is the moral equivalent of MSNBC's editorial page, where news organizations traditionally tell people what the news organization thinks. Maddow was hired because she reliably agrees with the MSNBC decision makers, and so is a good choice to tell people the editorial viewpoint of MSNBC.

Compare this to Fox News. At 9:00 PM, opposite Maddow's show, Fox News runs "The Kelly File," where Megyn Kelly presents the editorial viewpoint of Fox News. (Kelly is a relative newcomer to this time slot; Sean Hannity's show (also an editorial show) ran there for almost a decade.) Kelly's show is the moral equivalent of the Fox News editorial page. Like it or not, 24 hour news stations, including both Fox News and MSNBC, tend to put editorial shows on between 8:00 and 10:00 PM ET.

If you want to compare straight news coverage to straight news coverage, we can do that. If you want to compare the amount MSNBC editorial hosts lie to the amount Fox News editorial hosts lie, we can do that too. But those are comparisons of two wildly different things.

Saying Fox News is slanted because they don't have good people like Rachel Maddow (whose job it is to be slanted) is like saying a pickup truck is a bad vehicle to haul lumber because it doesn't have the acceleration of a sports car.

Comment: Re:Throw money at it! (Score 2) 351

Funny story about that. The IRS planned to implement the sequester cuts by furloughing, without pay, for five days during 2013. (Each of the 5 days would have been immediately preceding or immediately following a holiday weekend.) By mid July, the IRS "came up with some emergency funding" that they could use to offset the sequester cuts, meaning IRS staff only had to take 3 days without pay.

The sequester cuts were long over by the time you submitted your form in October. The government shutdown is also long over. The IRS is not "being forced to cut service" by the sequester or anything else.

Comment: Re:You keep using that word... (Score 2) 117

by jmac_the_man (#45963771) Attached to: Khosla, Romm Fire Back At '60 Minutes' Cleantech Exposé
It's worse than that. The largest of the "subsidies" that you have to include to get to the $1.3T figure they throw around is "negative externalities." Essentially, the environmentalists are making the argument that they want to create a "carbon tax" that they charge to energy companies, which the guy quoted in the article says would collect a total of $550 billion per year.

The carbon tax he's talking about isn't a law that's on the books. It's a proposal for a law that he wants the government to pass. And he's counting the failure of the government to pass that law as a subsidy.

At these prices, I lose money -- but I make it up in volume. -- Peter G. Alaquon