Slashdot is powered by your submissions, so send in your scoop


Forgot your password?

Comment: Re:"Let me ask you.... (Score 1) 76

by jratcliffe (#48927353) Attached to: Comcast Pays Overdue Fees, Offers Freebies For TWC Merger Approval

Revoking their franchise IS shutting down cable. The system belongs to the operator. You can revoke their franchise, but then you have to either build out a new system, from scratch (figure $800 per home passed, or $150M for a city like Minneapolis, and that's just for the outside network), or get another company to come in and put up the money, even though you've just kicked out a cable company (not exactly an enticing proposition).
I suppose you could try to eminent domain the system, rather than building it out yourself, but that's a couple of years of litigation. Meanwhile (i.e. absolute minimum a year, probably 2-3), your constituents are without cable TV or internet service.

Comment: Re:Franchise Fees are evil (Score 1) 76

by jratcliffe (#48924707) Attached to: Comcast Pays Overdue Fees, Offers Freebies For TWC Merger Approval

Part of the merger should be the requirement that franchise fees across the country need to be made illegal. They are only used to limit competition in a legal form.

The franchise agreement in my town states that no other cable company can sell services here. That's wrong.

That franchise arrangement is already illegal. The text of the document may say that, but it's unenforceable (unless your town is actually some sort of private development, and even then, it's probably unenforceable).

Comment: Re:"Let me ask you.... (Score 1) 76

by jratcliffe (#48924631) Attached to: Comcast Pays Overdue Fees, Offers Freebies For TWC Merger Approval

....just how can you be bought? And how cheaply?"

Also, shouldn't Minneapolis' club being removing the franchise for the unpaid franchise fee? If I don't pay Comcast, they turn off my cable.

Yeah, most politicians aren't that enthused by the idea of shutting down television and Internet service for a large % of their constituents.

Comment: Re:OP is completely full of shit (Score 1) 418

by jratcliffe (#48878885) Attached to: Blogger Who Revealed GOP Leader's KKK Ties Had Home Internet Lines Cut

Citing doesn't exactly help your credibility (just as citing wouldn't). Looking at the Snopes piece, there's not enough to prove conclusively that he knowingly spoke to a white supremacist group, but it's by no means debunked or clearly not true.

If Scalise thinks this claim is libelous, he should definitely sue the blogger. Not sure he really wants to be questioned under oath on the topic, though...

Comment: Re:More EVs = More Infrastructure = More Sales (Score 1) 181

by jratcliffe (#48818799) Attached to: Tesla To Produce 'a Few Million' Electric Cars a Year By 2025

The "Tesla outsold Mercedes S-Class" claim again? That was true for 2013, during the end of the S-class model generation, which had unusually low volume (13k units). Definitely not true for 2014, when the S-class sold 25k units in the US. My 15k unit number for Tesla in the US is actually a high-end estimate, more likely to be 13-14k. So, Tesla's 2014 US sales are going to be a bit more than half those of the S-class. I don't have data on the 7-series handy. As for the ELR, that performance has more to do with Cadillac (which hasn't been successful thus far going after the German lux lines across the board) than Tesla.

Don't get me wrong, the Tesla is a great car, but let's not get carried away.

Comment: Classic pricing problem (Score 4, Interesting) 330

by jratcliffe (#48614007) Attached to: 11 Trillion Gallons of Water Needed To End California Drought

Make something free (or nearly so), and people will use lots of it. CA's water problem is by no means insoluble.

1. Figure out how much water the state can sustainably use.
2. Set a price for water usage. Set a flat price for all users, residential, commercial, industrial. No reason that some users of water should get it more cheaply than others.
3. If usage remains above the level determine in #1, raise the price.
4. Repeat process until usage falls to the level determined in #1.

Of course, this process would likely result in a big chunk of the unsustainable agriculture in CA going under, but so be it - basing a business on the assumption that you'll get continued massive discounts on a key input isn't particularly wise planning, and there's no reason why other CA water users should be forced to subsidize those businesses.

"We shall reach greater and greater platitudes of achievement." -- Richard J. Daley