Google has played nice with CyanogenMod but they don't officially support it, and moreover they consider CyanogenMod a version of Android (because it is, it's AOSP plus some bits that don't affect compatability, not bits of AOSP in something else.) Google has been fairly hostile towards operating systems that have compatability layers but that aren't, essentially, Android systems.
They're right, in fact, to take on this policy. Google runs the Play Store not just for the benefit of users, but also developers who want to sell their apps. Developers do not want to support app sales to users who aren't running predictable versions of the Android operating system. It's bad enough, in many ways, that they have to navigate their way through "ICS + Sense" / "Gingerbread + Motoblur" type crap, actually having a situation where the apis don't necessarily do what they're expected to do adds another layer of awfulness.
The chances of Google supporting the Play Store under Ubuntu is close to zero. Amazon? Slight chance in that they distribute their store's APK to anyone who wants it, but it's notable that the Amazon App Store running under, say, an SDK image, rarely offers anything like the same range that it does on a real phone or tablet. In other words, they may also be uncomfortable supporting app sales to people with non-standard systems.
Tablet apps require their own UIs. I don't think the availability of ordinary desktop GNOME apps can really be considered part of the pile when evaluating software support for a tablet running Ubuntu.
All depends on how important that minimum spec really is. I have a Kindle Fire that runs Jellybean. Supposedly the Fire's spec is too poor to run anything of the sort. Yet the OS feels as smooth as it does on my Galaxy Nexus (and that's very, very, smooth.)
Well, that's because you've taken a bunch of random laws that in most cases are bi-partisan (mandatory seat belts? You mean that law Margaret Thatcher passed in the early eighties? Believe she passed the helmet thing too), classified them as "leftist" (you do know that term loses all meaning when you apply it to anything you consider left wing, right?) and tried to find some fear based reasoning for them.
The problem is it doesn't work. Seat belts mandated out of fear? Why would I fear you not wearing your seat belt? Or motorcycle helmet? I mean, you might come up with a justification for saying the two were invented because of fear, but not a law making them mandatory.
Why are they mandatory? I believe it's an insurance thing. My insurance goes up if you don't wear your selt belt and get horribly mangled (yet decide to survive, you selfish bastard) and require extremely expensive medical treatment as a result.
Gun free zones? Again, not getting the fear aspect. You don't want little Jonny taking some gun he found in the teacher's drawer and pointing it at little Sammy and saying "Bam" and then little Sammy is dead and Jonny is all tearful. Is it right? We can debate that. Is it more based upon fear than, say, a health and safety ordinance requiring asbestos be kept out of schools? Not that I can think of.
Hate speech? What does that have to do with fear? Seriously? And how many people on the left promote anti-HS laws anyway? I don't know any. I'm not saying they don't exist, but for the most part where they HS laws appear they're passed by most moderate politicians, with far left and far right generally disapproving. And what's their motive? Generally a belief that hate speech promotes hate, and hate is bad, and we should have a nice society.
Kind of like when conservatives ban nipples or rude words. Now, that's not to say that I don't think there aren't conservatives out there who are all out terrified of nipples, but we know that actually conservatives demand they be banned from TV etc is ultimately because conservatives want some kind of "wholesome" society, at least, as conservatives define it.
So of all the examples you gave, none are examples of fear, and none are particularly left wing.
Americans would love public transit if it was actually available and convenient, and if 1950s era zoning policies hadn't made the concept of "A short walk to a convenience store, a quick bus ride to the downtown" pretty much inheard in most of the US.
Tax reform? A tiny part of the story. Railroads shouldn't be subjected to property taxes, and gasoline taxes (etc) should cover the full cost of roads, but that's a tiny part of the story. Zoning reform is much, much, more important.
People who have trains nearby generally use them. People in real cities, like NYC, use them almost exclusively.
The problem with the US is the intentional run-down of rail infrastructure, together with anti-pedestrian policies, outside of a few well built metropolitan areas since the 1950s. In almost all of the US, it is illegal to build a business within walking distance of the customers it serves, or employees it employs. Buildings are required to have excessive parking, which must be provided to customers for "free" (that is, included in the price of goods you sell, so pedestrians who do decide to walk the massive distances needed to get from one building to another have to subsidize car owners who don't.)
Meanwhile, rails are subject to punative taxes. The entire industry is covered in regulations that would have looked overly bureaucratic and burdomesome in the 1970s. The train companies that used to operate in the most populous part of the US went bankrupt in the early seventies due to hostile anti-rail governance, and as a result, what's left in most of the US is a stripped down system that's only useful for freight. Outside of the North East, if you're lucky, you may live within one hundred miles of a station that's served up to four times a day by a long distance train that travels at an average of about 40mph.
That's how bad it is. You Brits whining about how much National Express sucks as a rail TOC? You have no idea what's bad. At least your system is growing.
Completely unrelated, the HTC One is an Android phone.
Why not try to look beyond the easy slogans instead?
American conservative rhetoric is entirely about fear. You're going to lose your job because the liberals want to tax rich people more. You're going to be attacked by terrorists because the liberals aren't going to torture them enough. Live in the country? The city-folk are going to take your guns away so you won't be able to defend yourself when black people stage a home invasion in your home.
Freedom? Not so much. Conservatives rarely campaign on increasing the freedom of the voter they're targetting, it's almost always about preventing freedom from being taken away from some group you rely on to protect you. You don't want the CIA to have their freedom to fight terrorists taken away. You don't want the Koch brothers to have their freedom to create jobs taken away. The gun thing is a minor exception but as I've said before, that's always been a city/country thing, and the bizarre part is that gun control is an inherently illiberal position that's only ended up the way it is due to some very weird, and ultimately self defeating in the long term, politicing by pro-gun groups.
Liberals, conversely, talk about how their policies could help you. How much better life might be if you don't have to pay directly for healthcare, or if there was a decent transportation system in this country. In other words they talk about fixing problems, rather than keeping things the same lest unrealistically horrifying consequences occur.
So no, the US is pretty much the same as everywhere else in this regard.
Gun control is a city/country split, not liberal/conservative. But even so, you'd expect someone who's more fearful to arm themselves to the teeth, justifying it by describing unlikely scenarios where they're under attack.
Not trying to be mean, but while Slashdot 1.0 was "good" it was despite its flaws, which increased over time as the code was hacked upon to make it appeal more to Rob's vision.
In some ways, Rob Malda is the George Lucas of blogs.
Clearly you are contradicting yourself
No, I'm not.
Good journalism is about using entertainment to tell an important story
Yes, good journalism is. Just look good filmmaking is about imparting an important message in an entertaining way. But filmmaking doesn't require the message be important, and journalism doesn't require the story be important, or entirely or mostly factual.
You don't like what I've written because you've listened to good journalists describe the job they think they've done, and you want to believe them because, well, if they're right, then they're making the world a better place. But the reality is that independent journalism started out as, and always has been, a world of poorly sourced gossip and sensationalism. Mainstream journalism has never been about leaving people better informed. It's always been about entertainment.
The tree of research must from time to time be refreshed with the blood of bean counters. -- Alan Kay