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Comment Great answer, thanks (Score 2) 281

Ok - so I'm anal about this... but for those of us who are, it does do terrible things to our ability to hear what is being said. So be kind to those of us who have this disability.

This is a great discussion of the need for provision

based on the old joke

“A panda walks into a cafe. He orders a sandwich, eats it, then draws a gun and fires two shots in the air.

"Why?" asks the confused waiter, as the panda makes towards the exit. The panda produces a badly punctuated wildlife annual and tosses it over his shoulder.

"I'm a panda," he says, at the door. "Look it up."

The waiter turns to the relevant entry and, sure enough, finds an explanation.

Panda. Large black-and-white bear-like mammal, native to China. Eats, shoots and leaves.”

Comment The BBC has a mixed record (Score 1) 542

Its reboot of Survivors was unimpressive. Their reboot of Dr Who is superb.

It is the virtue of their funding model - a poll tax on TV viewers - is that it enables them to be adventurous. Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrel was excellent although the first episode dragged. Let's hope 'Good Omens' is as good.

Comment Note the soft glove approach to Exxon (Score 4, Insightful) 171

If a small company was being investigated and their emails were significant to the crime, then there would be no problem with grabbing everything despite the damage that it would do to the small firm. Yet when a big firm is being investigated, they are free to hand over what they feel like. A similar problem was visible when News International was done in the UK over its phone hacking behaviour. A little less subtly from prosecutors would be welcome!

Comment Socialism is NOT necessary (Score 0) 171

What is necessary is for polluters to pay the full price of the damage that they are doing to the environment. This can be achieved by carbon pricing in the case of the flap over climate change, which can occur without 'socialism' as such. If however you fail to implement that, it's as immoral as dumping sewage on someone's front garden or graffiting priceless painting...

Comment Children playing? (Score 1) 469

Once upon a time it was safe to let children play in the street - or at least walk to a friend's house on the sidewalk. This reflected the fact that the traffic was limited in residential areas. The idea that we should sacrifice our kids safety to motor vehicles who have no NEED to be in an area is one that needs further thought. The rise in traffic flows in residential areas is a classic example of the boiled frog problem - one where an issue has got worse so slowly that noone has reacted to what is actually a massive loss for the community.

Submission + - A mealy mouthed denial from the ex-DNI over Trump wiretap allegation (

Bruce66423 writes: This appears to boil down to: 'We didn't make a specific effort to target him and the rest of the out of control apparatus I pretended to have some idea about may or may not have done it'.

Given that the evidence is there that ALL phones are monitored to a greater or lesser extent, the question is whether meaningful or significant intelligence emerged, and what has been done with it.

But all credit to Trump — it's continuing to generate noise behind which he can carry on with his agenda.

Submission + - Bangalore may be uninhabitable in 8 years time (

Bruce66423 writes: "All in all, experts predict a severe water crisis which will make Bangalore uninhabitable by 2025, with residents potentially having to be evacuated."

Which could end its competition in outsourcing... every cloud has a silver lining.

Comment Clear criminal fraud (Score 1) 89

The story comes on the same day as the French police arrest some people for selling 'drugs' to cure fatal diseases. In both cases the perpetrators are getting money for something that doesn't work - though arguably given the placebo effect, the drug sellers are less likely to be wrong about their claims.

The answer is clear; customers who paid for a service that it was technically impossible for them to receive should get a full refund and the company should be charged with criminal fraud. Note this is the kind route; the Hebrew Bible would call for a repayment of 3 times the sum, with a failure to pay resulting in the people responsible being sold into slavery - though only for 6 years!

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Marvelous! The super-user's going to boot me! What a finely tuned response to the situation!