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Comment Re:Why so discriminating? (Score 1) 1036

AFAIK, they're not actually applying a special tax to people because they're gay. It's putting kind of a fine point on it, but actually, they just give tax breaks to people for being married, and unfortunately, our government doesn't allow same-sex marriage. IMO, TRWTF is that the govt has any involvement in marriage at all. Only slightly less WTF-y is our tax code...

disclaimer: I'm a Libertarian, so I consider at least 90% of the government to be a huge WTF...

Comment Re:certs (Score 1) 281

This is so true. I think companies that require these certifications do it for two reasons. Either they get some kind of special status for having employees with the certifications (e.g. "Microsoft Partner"), or they're too lazy to truly evaluate how well employees are keeping current, and the piece of paper is a shortcut for this. I think that a company that truly cares about the employees' skills more than a piece of paper could find better ways to evaluate. The certification just means that you can remember a lot of information and regurgitate it, not that you have a deep understanding of it, or the creativity to use it to solve problems in the best way. As someone who has never actually run a business, I humbly suggest that companies who want to encourage their employees to keep current start setting aside a certain amount of time each week for developers to take turns presenting something new they've learned to the rest of the team. Each developer would only have to prepare something once a month or so (give or take, depending on team size), and most people, I expect, wouldn't have a problem with spending a few hours to a day of their personal time studying/researching for something like this, especially if they get to choose the topics themselves. Plus, from the effort of one individual, and an hour of listening to the presenter and discussing, the whole team learns something new each week.

Comment Re:Conflict? (Score 3, Informative) 613

Almost every year about this time I post some sort of rant about how wasteful it is that we don't even have a free, official online tax-filing website. It would save filers tons of time, it would save the IRS tons of money. But the tax preparers don't care about that (after all, $1 of intentional government inefficiency is 25 cents of income for them) and somehow, though I can't figure out how, this tiny special interest has the power to dictate government policy.

It's not exactly "official", as you have to go to a third party, but you can file online free. I worked as a tax preparer one year, and from my experience, the reason most clients chose $tax_service instead of doing it themselves (paper or online) wasn't because they couldn't, but because $tax_service offered refund anticipation loans. Which means they get a check for several thousand, less a couple hundred in fees, the next day, rather than waiting a week or more for direct deposit of the full refund.

Comment Re:what? (Score 1) 1053

Rewarding preventive behaviors would be a good start. For instance, give a discount or rebate for people who join a gym, get regular checkups, etc. Even paying for these things outright would probably cost the insurance company a lot less than paying for the conditions that these behaviors tend to prevent... Any insurance companies out there doing this?

Comment Congratulations! (Score 1) 1146

Don't worry about books that you feel don't apply to you, just use common sense. Treat her with the love and respect you want her to treat you with. Love and take care of each other. Don't ever forget all the reasons you love her so much now, and don't let her forget how awesome she is. Show your appreciation for even the little things. Always back each other up, especially if/when you have kids. Be dependable for one another, but don't take one another for granted.

Comment Re:How could the miss that? (Score 1) 257

If you are referring to the meconium, this doesn't actually happen with most babies. About 10 to 15% of babies pass meconium before or during birth, and about 2 to 5% of those aspirate/ingest it. It is more typical to pass meconium about 12 hours after birth, and minimal diaper changing skill will prevent any of it from being consumed :)

Comment Re:They force you to lease software (Score 1) 1016

No other obvious purpose? How about wanting to play a (paid for) foreign version of a game? Or what if you really do back up your (paid for) game and want to play the copy while keeping the original protected (Probably a good idea for anyone who has cats or toddlers in the house...). Or, (and this one I have to admit is kind of lame), I had a game a long time ago that somehow I managed to lose. It was legitimately purchased for me, and after a few moves, I just can't find it. Now, it turns out to be a pretty rare/hard to find game, and if I want to purchase another copy, I have to pay over 100$ on Ebay or the like. You could say it's my own fault for losing it, and I'd have to admit you had a point. But, if I were to download and burn a copy and mod my system to play it, I think you'd have to admit that I wasn't stealing or otherwise being immoral by doing so.
It's too bad that there are people who will also pirate games, which I still believe is wrong. But the fact remains that there are plenty of (at least ethically) legitimate purposes for a modded console, and I don't think that other people's bad behavior should prevent me from using my console for those purposes. The automatic assumption of guilt seems to be what really bothers us here.

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