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Comment Re:Comcast Router? I think not (Score 1) 203

You can certainly get separate ones, there are tons of models available. Why do people think they have to use what the ISP provides? The ISP shouldnt be providing anything past provisioning the modem, they dont want to be, and when customers demand otherwise they get the cheapest box to setup and administer that the ISP can possibly find. If you are remotely technical you should just buy yourself a decent modem and router and set them up and administer them yourself. All you need the ISP to do is provision the modem.

Comment Re:RedHat be unsmart? (Score 3, Insightful) 118

"Redhat is an enterprise Distro. Slackware is a hobbiest Distro Tow very different things."

True that they are two different things, sure. Though they are actually extraordinarily similar (to the point I usually get modded down when I say that they should be treated as two different, though closely related, Operating Systems, rather than being carelessly referred to as 'Linux'.)

"IT's like comparing Boeing to Cessna. They both make airplanes... but they both target completely different markets."

A very misleading analogy. It's more like if Boeing and Cessna were both building a plane based on the same chassis and engine. Slackware just produces one that lifts off a thousand pounds lighter, has engines that produce more thrust, and a stark, functional control layout, and gives it away for free expecting whoever uses it to have pilots, airplane mechanics, etc. on staff and to do their own due diligence and accept their own liability, while Redhat produces a much heavier version on the same airframe that they essentially rent to you, under a support contract where their mechanics keep it flying and they accept (some of the) liability.

That analogy isnt great either actually but it's a lot better than one that implies that RHE is somehow going to 'lift more weight' than Slackware. Given the same hardware the opposite would be true.

Comment Re:Shocked I am not. (Score 1) 116

The Patriot Act is a very bad piece of legislation passed in a very rushed manner and yes certainly more people should have spoken out about this earlier but nonetheless, no act of Congress has authority to over-ride the Constitution, and any law that purports to, e.g. over-rule the 4th Amendment is null and void on its face. So no, I dont think it's silly at all.

Comment Not the big problem (Score 1) 116

The big problem here is that the watchers entrusted with enforcing the laws have set themselves above the laws. Not exactly news but with more confirmation coming out every day more and more people are becoming aware.

But there are technical problems. Our technical systems (computers and the internet) are very poorly designed. I have been saying this since the 80s but everyone was focused on making something happen now, instead of designing it right so it would continue to work in the future. So we have computers that are impossible to secure, communicating over network protocols where encryption is an afterthought, if that. And a mass of Septemberizens online reliant on extremely poorly designed browsers that will happily run code from any random server that they see a reference to. None of these technical problems are 'the problem' here but they certainly contribute to it, by making it absurdly easy for this spying to be performed, by the US government or anyone else.

Comment Re:Agreed, it's stupid (Score 1) 737

"It so absolutely makes business sense to repel half of your target market (and more than that of your potential target market) in order to pursue a small marginal edge in your existing customer base."

It doesnt repel anywhere near half their market, obviously. The gamer chicks I know drool over the booth babes more than I do (which isnt saying much actually but it's there.) The only people that are repelled are chronic busy-bodies and those people are far too busy trying to run everyone elses lives to spend time playing video games anyway. They are not the target audience.

Comment Re:Problem? (Score 2) 737

"I notice that you're stuck speculating because apparenlty you've never actually, like, talked with (or more to the point, listented to) women on the subject. Hmmmmm."

Huh? He said specifically he knew many women that were fine with it. I do too. Yes, it's sexist if you want to look at it that way, but primarily against men (presuming that we are brainless idiots who will buy crap simply because there is a healthy young woman nearly nude associated with it.) The girls are getting paid outrageous amounts of money just to show up and look pretty. If that's a bad message (and I tend to agree it is) the fact is it's sent in every other area of society, singling out conventions over it is silly. Worrying about booth babes when people are starving strikes me as the drama of the overprivileged busybody.

Comment Re:Translation..... (Score 1) 192

"Apple and Microsoft want users who are happy with being locked down. They're easier to manage and make money from, and above all, they accept what they're given."

This makes sense. What doesnt make sense is how the GNOME program wound up being run by a bunch of idiots that want the same thing. They dont have the same financial incentives to take that position, and based on their origin you would expect them to be exactly the opposite. Yet they are not, and they detoured to their present course many years ago. Why?

Comment Re:Yes (Score 1) 397

Yes, if he ran the stop sign then he is at fault in the resulting accident. We werent talking about that. We were talking about a case where e.g. the *other* guy ran the stop sign and plowed into him, was clearly at fault according to observation of the accident, but the blame is shifted to the guy he hit simply because of the later determination that his BAC was over an arbitrary level.

Comment Re:Yes (Score 1, Interesting) 397

"I didn't say it was right, I just pointed out the way it is. You cause a fender bender, you've got a little bit of trouble to deal with. You get caught drunk behind the wheel, regardless of how you got caught, pose for your mug shot."

And once that insanity was accepted the slippery slope to the destruction of the 4th amendment was only a matter of time.

Comment Re:Taxation wrong? Sorry, don't get it. Foreign. (Score 1) 701

"I'll hijack this here, because that's an important point. One of the strongest correlators of crime is the (inverse) quality of public education [0]. "

Agreed, excepting that the word 'public' here is unnecessary, inaccurate, and seems quite likely to amount to question-begging.

"Paying a small share for the education of your neighbours kids, even if you don't have any on your own, means paying for things you don't use. Yet the reduced stealing, robbing and killing 10 years down the road will benefit you personally."

Would that this was true! But you set a false scenario because you are assuming that without public education they wont get an education at all. This is false. My contention is that they would have the opportunity to receive a better, not a worse or simply no, education. Even if nothing else changed, simply the fact that someone is paying for something makes them less likely to waste it.

Good education is vitally important, on that I think we agree. My point is it's far too important to hand it over to an unaccountable monopoly.

Comment Re:Taxation wrong? Sorry, don't get it. Foreign. (Score 1) 701

I trained as an anthropologist for a few years under some excellent teachers, though I dont claim a degree in it. And quite simply, Dr. Diamond is wrong or you have misunderstood him. It's been many years since I read that book but I dont recall getting that message exactly. At any rate, in a band society the band is the common practical unit of organisation, but it is not the only one. Band members are not normally all related (a band might be composed of two families and several non family members) and band membership is extremely fluid, with people changing from band to band through the year, often essentially at will. Clans and tribes of people (generally related mythologically, not always literally) were larger groupings which could encompass many bands. Certainly sometimes groups fought each other, but peaceful interaction would still be the norm in most times and places. Horror stories regarding modern societies of this type consist of simple lies mixed with truths about things that happened only after the society was already broken down and effectively destroyed.

And yes, there is a danger of falling into the noble savage delusion, but there is also danger of denigrating our ancestors and underestimating them as well. It's all too easy to see our current state as the end of history, the pinnacle of achievement, etc. But an honest approach that can see our flaws as well as our achievements is probably better.

Comment Re:Taxation wrong? Sorry, don't get it. Foreign. (Score 1) 701

"Most libertarians wouldn't think taking a pair of shoes from a store without paying for it was just or reasonable, but when it comes to paying the bills for society, it suddenly becomes just and reasonable to take without paying."

Not at all. This is an absolute straw man.

We have no problem paying for what we use. But we dont want to pay for the things we dont use. Like the wars, the spying, the surveillance. And the things that we do use, we want provided in a competitive market-place where abusive unresponsive or otherwise problematic suppliers cannot simply continue to bill us as much as they wish and use it for whatever they want!

Stability is important but it must not be our supreme value. To do its job a society has to be founded on principles of basic decency and respect for your fellow man. Robbing your fellow man or, if he resists, shooting him, in order to fund your favorite pet project (whether the project itself is worthy or not) simply doesnt fit the bill.

"On the otherhand, I do understand the Libertarian argument that you're taking the fruits of someone's labour to pay for society. But I fail to see how it's any different than paying any other shareholder his fair share of the profits."

Really? You fail to see the difference between a consensual relationship, and a non-consensual one? The difference is clearly in whether or not each individual has the choice of whether or not to enter and remain in the relationship. The consequences of that difference is that consensual relationships inevitably offer a net value to all parties (otherwise consent is not granted or is withdrawn) while non-consensual relationships do not necessarily offer that value, as one or more parties is captive. It seems quite clear, and hardly a trivial distinction.

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