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Comment: Re:Short sighted (Score 4, Informative) 230

by tranquilidad (#48595461) Attached to: Forbes Blasts Latests Windows 7 Patch as Malware

Though I agree with your sentiment there was an additional patch in the group (KB2553154) that was a security update that conveniently broke ActiveX controls and macros in Excel 2013. It wasn't just one incredibly bad patch.

I pity the poor vendors and their even poorer customers whose spreadsheets suddenly stopped working on December 10th.

Comment: Re:Reminder of who not to credit (Score 3, Insightful) 151

by tranquilidad (#48348377) Attached to: 25th Anniversary: When the Berlin Wall Fell

It's not about a single speech and its timing.

Reagan's speech was part of a much larger program to pressure the Soviets. Reagan believed, fundamentally, that communism was evil and spent a lot of energy fighting it.

Now, you may rightly argue that Reagan didn't personally tear down the wall. You may reasonably argue that Reagan wasn't the only influence in getting the wall torn down.

Reducing Reagan's and Thatcher's programs against communism and all that represented it down to a single speech is unfair. Your concentration on the timing of the speech in relation to when the wall came down certainly seems to discount any other actions the US and other countries took.

Your concern that there were other speeches that aren't as well publicized as Reagan's is fine. How about highlighting a single line or a few lines from those speeches that brought as much focus as Reagan's imperative to Mr. Gorbachev? In fact, most people are probably unaware of what Reagan said in that speech other than his rallying cry and creating such a slogan is often a powerful mover.

Comment: Re:Rainbow PUSH said ... (Score 4, Insightful) 123

by tranquilidad (#48301191) Attached to: Amazon Releases (Not Many) Details On Its Workforce Demographics

Required by whom? Under-represented how?

Do you measure representation based on the numbers of that minority in the community? If so, which community: city, county, state, nation, world? Or, do you measure representation based on the number of individuals that have entered the field?

What measures do they take? If someone whose skin is black or brown is under-represented do you pay those candidates more because of the color of their skin? If Asians are over-represented do you pay them less to discourage their entry in the industry and get their numbers "back in line?"

What makes race? If someone is born of multi-racial parents which race counts?

The problem with demands such as these is they don't seek to solve any supposed problem other than enriching their own pockets through consultation fees. If you are measuring workplace diversity based on the skin color you observe when you look at your fellow work mates then you are, ultimately, practicing a form of racism yourself.

Every proposed solution to this manufactured problem is in and of itself racist.

Rainbow PUSH doesn't want to believe in, and it's in their best interest to discourage, individual accomplishment and responsibility. If they fail to divide along skin color then they fail to enrich themselves through extortion. If we allow their division to continue then we continue to promote the very mechanisms that create inequality.

+ - CurrentC Breached->

Submitted by tranquilidad
tranquilidad (1994300) writes "As previously discussed in Slashdot, CurrentC is a consortium of merchants attempting to create a 'more secure' payment system. Some controversy surrounds CurrentC's requirements regarding the personal information required, their purchase-tracking intentions and retail stores blocking NFC in apparent support of CurrentC. Now news breaks that CurrentC has already been breached. CurrentC has issued the standard response, "We take the security of our users' information extremely seriously.""
Link to Original Source

Comment: Re:Remember when WSJ had a modicrum of decency? (Score 1) 720

Your proposed definition puts your hypothetical family, currently earning the current federal minimum wage and after median federal income tax rates are applied for that income level, at 138% of the poverty line.

The poverty line is, generally, defined to be the minimum income required to acquire the necessities of life.

It would appear that the current federal minimum wage provides for more than a living wage.

Comment: Re:Remember when WSJ had a modicrum of decency? (Score 1) 720

A "living wage" is complete bullshit. Can you even begin to give a definition to which even one, single large group can agree? I don't mean one of these feel good ethereal definitions - I mean one that actually has meaning.

Should it include the ability to work in whatever geographic area the person desires?
Should the person's commute be less than a certain amount of time?
What luxuries should the person be allowed to have? A cell phone? A smart phone? Internet service? Cable TV service?
Should a person be able to make a "living wage" by working no more than 40 hours a week? How about 32 hours a week?
Should a person be able to make a "living wage" by having only one employer?
Should a "living wage" support a family with only one worker? How large a family?
Should government assistance count towards the person's living wage or should that be a bonus?

"Living wage" is a nice phrase to throw around and it might make some people feel good about their politics but it provides no basis upon which to build economic planning; even if you believe it's the job of the government to perform either economic planning or to provide guarantees that everyone lives happily ever after.

Comment: Re:Remember when WSJ had a modicrum of decency? (Score 1) 720

On the other hand...

"Many of the states that have seen job growth despite raising the minimum wage are states with higher livings costs where fewer people actually work for minimum wage. Seattle is a great example of this, if extreme. Famous for enacting an ordinance that would raise the minimum wage to $11 an hour next year and ultimately to $15 an hour by January 2017, Seattle has a very high cost of living and a skilled population earning higher than average wages. Educational attainment is high: 56 percent of people in Seattle have a bachelor’s degree compared with a 28.5 percent national average for individuals aged 25 and older. Raising the minimum wage in Seattle is therefore far less intrusive than it would be in say, Omaha, Nebraska. According to CNN Money, someone who makes $45,000 a year in Omaha would have to make $61,353 in Seattle (36 percent more) just to have the same purchasing power."

+ - Is The Majority Of Global Warming Caused By Natural Atmospheric Circulation?

Submitted by tranquilidad
tranquilidad (1994300) writes "In a paper published by the National Academy of Sciences of the United States, two authors ascribe the majority of northeast pacific coastal warming to natural atmospheric circulation and not to anthropogenic forcing. In AP's reporting, Ken Caldeira, an atmospheric scientist with the Carnegie Institution for Science says the paper's authors, '...have not established the causes of these atmospheric pressure variations. Thus, claims that the observed temperature increases are due primarily to "natural processes are suspect and premature, at best."' The paper's authors, on the other hand, state, '...clearly, there are other factors stronger than the greenhouse forcing that is affecting...temperatures,' and that there is a 'surprising degree to which the winds can explain all the wiggles in the temperature curve.'"

Comment: Re:How do investors react to such info? (Score 1) 234

by tranquilidad (#47565069) Attached to: Comcast Confessions

You seem to think these items are disconnected.

The company is responsible to its owners only.

If it is in the best interest of the shareholders to piss off the customers then that's what they should do.

It is more likely that it's in the best interest of the shareholders to do as you suggest, have happy employees, happy customers and a product/service with which they can be proud.

As an investor I will put my money in those companies that give me the greatest return. Just because a company's sole focus is profit doesn't mean they shouldn't be a "good" company. The bigger question is not for the shareholders but for the customers. Why would customers continue to generate profits for the shareholders if it doesn't provide them with something they value or see as a fair trade for their dollars?

Comment: Re:Gee Catholic judges (Score 3, Informative) 1330

It covers the four contraceptives to which Hobby Lobby objected. Those four contraceptives may have the ability to prevent a fertilized egg from attaching to the uterus and, thus, Hobby Lobby's objection. Hobby Lobby had no objection to the other 16 contraceptives in the mandate and, in fact, had a long-standing practice of providing those contraceptives.

Comment: Re:But now... (Score 1) 1330

It is so unnecessary to drag out Citizen's United corporations are people too argument.

TItle 1 of the U.S. Code states:

In determining the meaning of any Act of Congress, unless the context indicates otherwise ...
the words "persons" and "whoever" include corporations, companies, associations, firms, partnerships, societies, and joint stock companies, as well as individuals; ...

This case rested on the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, an Act of Congress. Congress chose not to redefine persons to exclude corporations.

Comment: Re:Sudden outbreak of common sense (Score 2) 276

by tranquilidad (#47311611) Attached to: Federal Judge Rules US No-fly List Violates Constitution

So, your belief is that the Bill of Rights is a list of rights granted to the people by the government? What does the preamble say to you?

The reason I left the "right to bear arms" in there is because of the structure of the sentence that says, "the right of the people...". I could have also listed just the, "shall not be infringed" part and retained the meaning.

Perhaps you would be so kind as to explain how the U.S. Constitution is constructed from your perspective and how the language used in the Preamble to the Bill of Rights, the 9th and 10th amendments and the other articles of the Constitution reconcile with its purpose.

There's no doubt the U.S. Constitution has been hijacked by the national government. This was enabled by a re-definition of "commerce" in the 1930s. A really good example of how the Constitution was viewed before this re-definition is the language used in the 18th amendment creating prohibition.

Section 1. After one year from the ratification of this article the manufacture, sale, or transportation of intoxicating liquors within, the importation thereof into, or the exportation thereof from the United States and all the territory subject to the jurisdiction thereof for beverage purposes is hereby prohibited.

Section 2. The Congress and the several States shall have concurrent power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation.

Section 3. This article shall be inoperative unless it shall have been ratified as an amendment to the Constitution by the legislatures of the several States, as provided in the Constitution, within seven years from the date of the submission hereof to the States by the Congress.

Notice that the people, through the states, are granting a brand new power to the national government. The states were very careful in how they granted this new power to the government.

Now compare that amendment to the proposed equal rights amendment:

Section 1. Equality of rights under the law shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of sex.

Section 2. The Congress shall have the power to enforce, by appropriate legislation, the provisions of this article.

Section 3. This amendment shall take effect two years after the date of ratification

This amendment is restricting the power of the national government and the states. Those restrictions already existed. The language, on the other hand, shows the, in my opinion, disastrous evolution of thought from limited government with power coming from the people to one where the national government is strong and grants or denies rights to the people.

Comment: Re:Sudden outbreak of common sense (Score 5, Interesting) 276

by tranquilidad (#47310629) Attached to: Federal Judge Rules US No-fly List Violates Constitution

Because the Bill of Rights, as written, is not a list of rights granted but, rather, a list of prohibitions on the new government.

There was a huge debate about listing any rights because it was thought that no list could be complete. The preamble to the Bill of Rights identifies why it exists:

THE Conventions of a number of the States, having at the time of their adopting the Constitution, expressed a desire, in order to prevent misconstruction or abuse of its powers, that further declaratory and restrictive clauses should be added: And as extending the ground of public confidence in the Government, will best ensure the beneficent ends of its institution.

Notice the important statement, "...further declaratory and restrictive clauses should be added..."

"Congress shall make no law..."
"...the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed."
"No soldier shall..."
"...shall not be violated..."

These are all prohibitions on the newly formed government. A compromise was reached that required the inclusion of the 9th amendment, "The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people." This compromise is why all "retained" rights aren't listed and what allowed any rights to be listed; many who were negotiating the Bill of Rights were rightly fearful that the list would be seen as a "full" list of rights of the people.

The U.S. Constitution, as designed, granted powers from the people to the government. The compromise found within the Bill of Rights essentially listed a number of prohibitions so the new government absolutely knew that they could in no way interfere with this core set of rights.

Unfortunately, we've reached a point where many people believe that the U.S. Constitution confers rights from the government to the citizens rather than it's original purpose of conferring powers to the government from the people.

Comment: Re:They hate our freedom (Score 2) 404

by tranquilidad (#47310363) Attached to: San Francisco Bans Parking Spot Auctioning App

Yes, the cop can arrest you for anything he wants. That doesn't make it a lawful arrest.

The cop can ask you to leave but that doesn't make it a lawful order.

Sitting in a legally parked car would make it very difficult, under otherwise normal circumstances, for a police officer to issue a lawful order to leave.

See: Shuttlesworth v. City of Birmingham. This was a 1965 case that found, generally, that a police officer's order to "move on" had to be related to another function and made legal as it related to that other function; i.e., the officer is directing traffic and you're interfering with that traffic or, as an example, you are blocking pedestrian traffic on a sidewalk.

Otherwise, as the Supreme Court said, "...the literal terms of this ordinance are so broad as to evoke constitutional doubts of the utmost gravity." When addressing an ordinance that stated that it is "unlawful for any person to stand or loiter upon any street or sidewalk...after having been requested by any police officer to move on," the Supreme Court said, "The constitutional vice of so broad a provision needs no demonstration. It 'does not provide for government by clearly defined laws, but rather for government by the moment-to-moment opinions of a policeman on his beat."

Voluntarily giving personal rights over to police powers aids the continual erosion of those rights.

Comment: Re:They hate our freedom (Score 1) 404

by tranquilidad (#47309249) Attached to: San Francisco Bans Parking Spot Auctioning App

Well, my answer to the question would be, "None of your business," or, "I don't want to answer your questions," or, "Please leave me alone."

It's a crime to lie to a federal agent. It is rare that it's a crime to lie to a non-federal law enforcement officer. It's no crime to remain silent or refuse to answer questions.

I agree that San Francisco will do whatever they can to shut down any market with which they disapprove.

"How to make a million dollars: First, get a million dollars." -- Steve Martin