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Comment Bush's fault! (Score 4, Insightful) 66

Thanks Trump!

Don't forget Bush! Obama inherited DEA from his predecessor, didn't he? 8 years of Presidency is not enough to fix a federal law-enforcement agency, especially if you pick Attorney Generals for their Social Justice credentials, rather than the ability to run a sizeable organization. (An ability, Obama himself never had either.)

And, unlike closing Guantanamo, Obama never even promised to reign-in the Drug Enforcement Administration — so we can't hold him responsible for its abuses, can we?

Comment Re:User Convenience? (Score 2) 188

Correction: out of the one million Note 7s in the US, there were 92 confirmed incidents in its first month, which works out to about 1,100 incidents per million units per year. So, instead of "over 1000x", it's actually 380x. Even so, that's still a huge difference, and (much as I hate to say so) Verizon is clearly making the right call in keeping 911 available.

Comment Re:What Verizon Meant to say: (Score 2) 188

You're saying that anyone who--upon learning that their phone had a remote chance of burning them--wasn't willing to make time in their schedule to turn over the phone and set up a new one deserves to be left to die if faced with a life-threatening situation?

While I agree that these people are idiots for hanging onto their defective phones despite all of the warnings, suggesting they deserve to die is a step too far.

Comment Re:White supremacists banned, Black ones -- protec (Score 1) 99

while protecting the Black ones?

Did you link the right story? I don't see what it had to do with Twitter.

What I linked to had to do with BLM containing Black Supremacists, bent not merely on subjugating or mocking, but outright killing Whites. That Twitter protects them is covered by TFA itself.

Comment Re:User Convenience? (Score 2) 188

Yes, there is an inherent safety risk with these phones, but there is also an inherent safety risk with not travelling with one.

Bingo. And the risks aren't even close. The incident rate for the Note 7 was well under 100 per million in the first three months it was on the market. Annualized, that'd be less than 400 per million per year, most of which result in mere nuisance or mild injury. Contrast that with the 240 million 911 calls made each year across a population of about 320 million Americans. 80% of those calls are for life-threatening emergencies. 70% of the calls are from mobile numbers. That works out to 420,000 per million per year, all of which involve lives on the line.

The Note 7 is a complete disaster of a consumer product, but voluntarily bricking the device would be cutting off the nose to spite the face, given that they're over 1000x more likely to be used to save a life than they are to endanger one.

Comment Re:What Verizon Meant to say: (Score 3, Informative) 188

While I can't stand Verizon and consider the Note 7 an unmitigated disaster, you clearly have no understanding of how incredibly important 911 access is. Do the math for yourself and it's pretty clear that bricking the device makes absolutely no sense, given that a Note 7 user is 1000x more likely to place a 911 call than they are to have their phone combust. In fact, let's quickly walk through the math together...

The incident rate with the Note 7 was around 87 per million after the first three months or so. Even if we extrapolate the rate out to a full year, we're still talking about any particular Note 7 having less than a 0.04% chance of an incident in a given year. To the best of my recollection, none of the incidents to date have resulted in life-threatening injuries, so while 0.04% is an atrocious annual rate for a consumer product and well-deserving of a recall, a 0.04% annual incident rate isn't that bad in the grand scheme of things.

Contrast that with the fact that the US has a population of 320 million people who make 240 million 911 calls each year. 70% of the calls come from mobile devices and at least 80% are for actual, life-threatening emergencies. Based on that, we can say that lives are on the line for about 134 million 911 calls made from mobile phones in the US each year, which averages to about 2 calls per 5 Americans each year (42% annually). I'll admit that those calls are almost certainly not evenly distributed among the population, but we just want some ballpark estimates (i.e. orders of magnitude), so we'll use them as they are.

Suppose there are still one million Note 7 devices in use in the US. In the next half month, the odds suggest that about 15 of them will combust while 17,500 of them will be used to make 911 calls in response to life-threatening emergencies. As I said at the top, that means that a Note 7 user is over 1000x more likely to need to place a 911 call to save a life than they are to have their phone combust (which would probably cause more annoyance than injury).

But please, continue telling us about how Verizon is acting contrary to the safety and wellbeing of their customers.

Comment Re:How is this different from arbitrage on the NYS (Score 1) 213

Conservatives have been out of power and influence for so ling, this is stupid. But you're excused,since most assume Republicans are Conservatives.

They are mostly not. And to stomp out the flames in advance, neither is Trump. But he's not part of the Establishment, so we can hope for some minimal changes.

If we had elected any Establishment candidate, we would have no reason to hope.

Comment Re:How is this different from arbitrage on the NYS (Score 1) 213

Oh, dear, let's go to this now.

Computer buying of performance tickets enhances liquidity in that market. Instant sales, the venue and exhibitor are guaranteed sales, the artist(s) are ensured of their fee, all is well. The market then is extended as buyers pile in and buy at markup, and only the original seller(s) suffer in not sharing in the markup.

Or do they? Perhaps there is a raging business in brokered resales, and the venue/exhibitor/performers are the ones most cheated, if none of them share in the markup?

HFT is pure arbitrage. Liquidity isn't the primary feature. Automated ticket purchasing is even worse, in that the systems purport to open sales to buyers at a point in time, but the truth is very few human buyers are *permitted* to purchase - the bots win.

This is a good thing, enhanced only if the law could permit bot sales when disclosed in advance by the original sellers, putting you and me on notice that we are wasting our time queuing up to click and fail. At least be honest, so I won't bother, but will know that those tickets to the concert I want to go to won't cost $65, they will cost $125. Each. No matter.

Than I can make choices in an informed manner. And know that I'm actually enriching the scalpers. Then i can choose.

Comment Re:Welcome to the Trump future... (Score 1) 474

It's sure to drop further once he repeals health care.

This is amazing. I was going to post something snarky to the effect that, had Republicans done some kind of major overhaul of national healthcare in recent years, they would've been blamed for the decline of longevity.

But reality is even stranger than what I imagined — although Obamacare was passed without a single Republican vote, the Democrats blame Republicans for nation's worsening health anyway. Because of something they may do in the future!..

Now, the Anonymous Coward may have been sarcastic. But the moderators, who've elevated him to "Score: 4, Insightful" (at the time of this typing), certainly weren't...

Submission + - Student facing legal threats for publishing video of professor's anti-Trump rant (

mi writes: When the "Human Sexuality" teacher called Trump's victory "an Act of Terrorism" in classroom, a student began recording her rant. Now that he posted the video online, he is facing legal threats from the professor's union:

"This is an illegal recording without the permission of the instructor. The student will be identified and may be facing legal action.

Comment Re:Do a dutch auction (Score 1) 213

That works for performers whose sole revenue stream is their stage performance, but for performers who depend on revenue streams outside of the stage performance (e.g. selling albums), selling via auction would likely harm their long-term profits since they'd effectively be limiting their addressable market.

Right now, most musicians sell tickets for less than their actual worth (hence why scalpers are flourishing) as a way of rewarding their fans for their dedication. After all, up until relatively recently anyone willing to camp at a ticket booth/website could get a ticket fairly easily, simply because a willingness to camp was the constraining factor, rather than the money. But the artists weren't acting altruistically by pricing tickets like that. They were ensuring that anyone at all could become a dedicated fan, because doing so ensures that they have a steady revenue stream from album sales and other paraphernalia. There are only so many seats that can be filled at your performances, but there isn't a cap on how many albums you can sell. More fans = more sales, so you want to make the seats attainable in order to attract more fans who will buy your other items.

A rich fan may pay more for a seat, but they generally won't buy more albums than the next fan on the street, so if you limit your addressable market to the rich by pricing the tickets out of reach for the everyman, you're limiting your revenue from secondary sources. Again, that works fine if you're making the lion's share of your money at your stage performances (e.g. circuses, operas, etc.), but it doesn't work so well if you want to increase the number of people interested in you so that you can drive up sales of secondary items.

Comment Re:Depends on price (Score 1) 336

Even $25 is a lot to ask for someone such as myself. We have two national theater chains in the college town where I live, and their prices for tickets are ridiculously cheap. I have a pretty decent entertainment setup, but I can't compete with the big screen. When IMAX tickets are $7.75 each and regular tickets are $4.75 each, why would I choose to pay more for a worse experience?

Admittedly, the value proposition will be a lot different for others, particularly those with larger families, given that the ticket prices here in my town are unusually low (not that I'm complaining!), but regardless of where I live, I'd consider it a non-starter if it costs anything more than COST_OF_TICKET * FAMILY_MEMBERS_WANTING_TO_SEE_FILM. At that point, you're break-even on the cost, so all you're doing is trading the big screen experience for the convenience of watching on your own terms, which may be worth it on occasion.

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