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Comment Re:Numbers (Score 1) 575

As usual! -- "the legal definition of boarding is not the common sense definition"

I know, and that's what worries me. Since the Contract of Carriage is just that, a contract, it's only natural that companies will interpret everything as favorable to them as possible and applying legal definitions where it suits them is right up that alley.

As a consumer there's no choice short of not buying the product, but it would behoove all of us to understand exactly what the rules are. And by the way, this is not a problem unique to United. Every airline has a CoC, and every one has provisions for being involuntarily denied boarding.

Comment Re:Numbers (Score 2) 575

Also, denied boarding is a whole different ball game than being physically removed from the plane after already boarding.

Any aviation law experts here? I was talking to a pilot buddy of mine - he does charters, not air transport, but he said that the legal definition of boarding is not the common sense definition. In essence you have not boarded the plane until everyone is on and the door has been closed. At that point, everybody has boarded and the plane is legally "in flight" even though it hasn't left the gate. Thus, one can be denied boarding even though they're sitting in their seat.

If true that complicates the idea that once you set foot on the plane the rules about being denied boarding no longer apply (physically removing someone from a plane is an entirely separate matter).

Comment Finally! The restroom problem is solved (Score 4, Funny) 178

At long last, we can figure out which jerk is using all the toilet paper and clogging the plumbing. As a bonus we can improve employee health!

Dear employee: We have noticed that you are using an average of 9.8 squares of toilet paper per wipe, and wiping an average of 19 times, 3.2 seconds per wipe, four times per day, and yet only spend an average of 6.4 seconds at the sink. And by the way, using your right hand for that is just nasty. Please report to the Employee Wellness center for voluntary tips on how to wash your hands and increase your fiber intake.

Comment Re:The broadcast world knows better (Score 1) 155

That's one thing MLB.TV does a good job at. Under normal circumstances you get to choose from the home or away television feed. And then you get to choose your audio and there's usually five choices: home/away TV audio, home/away radio audio, AND ambient stadium mic.

When I'm watching but not watching (i.e. multitasking) I usually select the radio announcers for my city. Overall their commentary is better than the TV guys and since they're describing the game for a radio audience I can follow along without having to watch the screen every time. But if I'm just sitting watching the game it's ambient stadium the whole way baby.

Incidentally we just got off the ESPN bandwagon. With the Dish FlexPack we get basic cable stations plus our regional sports network for $40 a month for two years. No ESPN and no local channels (those cost $10 each). Local channels are handled through an OTA antenna that hooks up to our Dish receiver and integrates with the program guide.

Sling was a strong possibility but it was only marginally cheaper and the reliability wasn't great. Even with a 60 meg internet connection it falls down on live sports with fast action like hockey and baseball, if the channel is even working that day. Yet MLB.tv has no issues showing ballgames. Plus it's a lot of dicking around to go back and forth between Sling and OTA.

Comment Work dynamics (Score 3, Interesting) 207

It's no longer about where the jobs are. For a lot of people the office is wherever the worker happens to be. I work for major corporation but do so from home full time. I only have to physically visit a company facility a few times a year.

We just got back from three weeks in Arizona to catch spring ball, but it only cost me about a week of vacation, mostly taken an hour at a time. By staying on Eastern time and taking my laptop and Skype headset I could start my day at 4:30 AM and be done by noon. That left the whole afternoon to catch a game and do whatever. As long as I got to bed by 9:30 or so it was very sustainable. Most of my co-workers had no idea where I was because it didn't matter.

Comment Re:Because there's no advantage (Score 3, Insightful) 206

It's not about convenience. It's about security. The apps are far superior from a security perspective. Leave your card locked up at home so no one gets it when they steal your wallet.

Whose security exactly? Certainly not mine. If my wallet is stolen and I make timely reports my liability for any fraud on my credit cards is exactly zero. I have three credit cards but only ever carry two. Even if those two get shut down for a week while I await replacements I've got my third one at home.

One of my cards was tied up in the Target breach and even though I'd never had a balance higher than $1,000 on a $10,000 limit Bank of America let some fraudsters exceed my limit by over $15,000 making multiple purchases of $2,000 worth of gift cards within minutes of each other at a Sams Club before calling me to verify the activity. About a week later I got new cards in the mail along with an affidavit to sign which I gladly did. I was surprised to see that in the end when they reversed the $25,000 in charges they didn't bother to reverse the 2% cash back I earned on those purchases. I called three times asking them to adjust that as well. Finally after letting the credits sit on my account for six months with no reversal I said fuck it and spent the $500. I'm still a customer and never heard another word.

I don't care if my phone would be more secure because at the micro level it doesn't affect me one bit. One might say that we all pay higher costs because of fraud and while that's true if all fraud went away tomorrow the consumers would never see a dime. When the big bad banks had their debit card interchange fees significantly curtailed we were all told how great it was for the consumer. I didn't see a single price drop anywhere. I did, however, see CEOs of big retailers celebrating their increased profitability to shareholders specifically citing reduced expenses in the transaction processing category. So basically instead of one asshole group of companies exploiting consumers we just shifted it to another while patting ourselves on the back for doing something good for the little guy.

Comment Going about it the wrong way (Score 1) 435

Seems to me that the DOJ is going about this the wrong way. As the Affordable Care act has shown the government can't compel a private actor to do something. But it can tax the hell out of their refusal to do so.

I'm rather surprised they haven't schemed to let Apple continue to refuse but impose a tax of a billion dollars a day for doing so.

Comment Re:Not Progress (Score 1) 567

When we were test driving new cars for my wife we noticed that the turn signals on 2015 Fords were different. The switch had the typical lane change feature (push down half way and it will return to neutral and flash the indicator three times), but even on a full actuation the switch returned to neutral. The signal kept flashing until you turned or canceled the signal by actuating it again. I remarked on that to the salesman and he said yeah Ford was getting a lot of complaints on it.

We otherwise liked the car so a few weeks later we wound up ordering a new one, but by then Ford had switched over to the 2016 model. When our 2016 came in the first thing I noticed is that the turn signals now functioned more traditionally. Lane change is still there but when you push it all the way down it will stay in that position.

Comment Re:Weight (Score 1) 533

Furthermore, if it doesn't cross state lines, how the hell does the federal government have a right to step in anyway?
Because I guarantee you that the little toy has crossed state lines at least once in its lifetime, if for no other reason than to have its major components imported from China.

That's enough to trigger the federal government's authority to regulate something under the interstate commerce clause. With a few exceptions, it's a federal offense to possess a firearm within 1000' feet of a school if that firearm has ever traveled in interstate commerce. It could be the rifle my grandfather bought from Sears and Roebuck back in the 40s that hasn't left the state since then but that's irrelevant. The feds were able to assert federal jurisdiction against the Amish beard cutters in Ohio because the shears they used to commit the deed had been made in New York.

The idea that one must cross state lines in the course of committing an offense as a prerequisite for federal jurisdiction is sadly not even a trifle.

Comment Re:Here is how dealers make money. (Score 1) 439

Maybe I'm just a rarity but I've found a local dealer that deals very fairly with me. Due to a family connection I get A plan pricing on all Ford/Lincoln vehicles. There's no haggling involved and the dealer is going to make a set amount of profit (actually paid to them by Ford not me). I walked in one day and said I'm A-plan and willing to wait for however long it takes for my order to be built and I'm 99% sure I'll just write you a check. To the national/regional dealers you basically get fuck you treatment from that point out.

Not this place - they pulled a half dozen different models out for us to test drive to see how we liked the various options and let us take over a half day of their time. One official dealer fitted option of interest was a particular cargo area cover and they actually told us not to buy it because people weren't happy with how it worked and the durability wasn't great. There went an easy $150 for them but the owner said he couldn't ethically sell it to someone without warning that others have been dissatisfied.

On our second car we had a trade in that needed a lot of work (CEL was lit and would require a $800 repair and the airbag light was on which needed almost $1200 in work). There were a good number of dings and dents. Despite that they still offered us $500 below the Good condition.

Do we take our cars there for service? You bet - basic oil changes are only $5-10 above that of a Jiffy Lube and include a tire rotation. Out of warranty repairs are charged at the lesser of book rate or actual time, whichever is in my favor.

One other thing I've noticed is that the owner is not hurting for every asshole's dollar either. I was waiting for an oil change one time and a guy came in playing the tactics others have espoused here, to the point of being belligerent. The owner came over, offered his hand and calmly told the guy that he was sorry that his dealership would not be able to give him the experience he was looking for, but he would fire any salesman that used 10% of the language he [the customer] had used. He wished him nothing but the best in his car buying adventure and showed him the door.

Comment Re:I interviewed for a job they not paying mileage (Score 2) 241

The part about not paying for your commuting miles (miles that you would spend from the office to your house) is correct. In the US anyway tax rules require commuting miles to be deducted from any amount paid to or claimed by the employee. It makes sense - if you normally drive 10 miles each way to work, why should you be paid to drive 9 miles to a client site if you never went into the office that day?

It can get tricky if you go into the office and then to a client site and then home (or vice versa) but where I work they've got a pretty good system for figuring that all out.

Comment Re:Very sad - but let's get legislation in place N (Score 1) 706

Good points, but one thing I'll caution on. You can outsource the responsibility but you can't outsource the ultimate accountability. Recognizing that you're not able to handle a particular task is a fine reason to outsource it and this is a perfect example. But at the end of the day, you hired them.

Even with the best indemnification agreement your wife's business will suffer to some degree if there's a breach. It is, after all, your wife's brand first and foremost. If she accidentally sells subpar yarn due to a screwup at her supplier she can't completely wash her hands of the affair when customers complain. Same thing if your PCI vendor lets you down.

Comment Re:Glad to hear it but... (Score 1) 1083

Actually if you'd read my subject instead of just the comment you would have seen that I said I was glad to hear the news (implied: because it's good news for somebody else) but it was not terribly relevant to me. Sorry if I'm not out actively celebrating this ruling any more than I am that raisin farmer in Oregon who doesn't have to give the government his raisins, or the family in Ohio who now gets to sit through a third murder trial.

But I suppose it's just easier to shoot from the hip at someone who's not cheering with the expected level of enthusiasm.

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