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Comment Which is why we need a gross receipts tax (Score 2, Interesting) 167

Does your real estate agent take a percentage of your profit?
Does your broker base his fees on your profit?
Does your property tax bill ask what your profit was?

Of course not, so why is the US Government that? The value you get from the government running the military, maintaining safety programs,and building and maintaining our transportation infrastructure isn't based on how much you made last year, it's a fixed cost. Change to a gross receipts tax and every dollar you receive is taxed at a fixed rate. No worries about what is deductable, or what does or doesn't qualify as pre or post tax. Plus it's more easily auditable.

My town uses it and it's pretty fucking straight forward. You put down what you grossed, and you multiply that by between 0.10% and 0.37%. Yes, you read that correctly - our local business tax is ten to thirty-four CENTS for every One Hundred DOLLARS you gross. And, aside from lying on your tax forms, there's no way around it.

Comment Re:How many times... (Score 3, Funny) 55

Don't you worry. After this election we'll eliminate oversized regulatory agencies like the FCC that are full of unelected, unaccountable bureaucrats who make it harder for small businesses like AT&T to come up with new business models (such as throttling websites that don't pay extortion fees).

Comment Re:So in other words... (Score 0) 302

"Bullshit. The federal government has both the power and duty regulate such devices."

And they regulate everything, their regulation is what made makign health claims about e-cigs illegal.

As for the power and duty, I missed where we gave them that in the constitution. Unless you mean in the "can get away with it" sense. Studying for safety and spreading information is quite different than regulating.

"At the same time I shouldn't have to pay for injuries or damages caused by people using these things by raising my insurance rates."

And I shouldn't have to pay for baby boomers and their physical fitness obsession wearing out their joints, other couples choosing to have a baby, the heart health effects of that terrible food they eat, the mental and physical health problems caused by choosing to go war, and the damage caused to officers and dea agents in their fight in a pointless war on drugs. Oh wait, yes, we both SHOULD pay for those things because that is what insurance is for. I get absolutely no say or judgement in the health and safety practices of others, I have to pay toward their well being no matter the source and they have to pay for mine when I do something stupid and end up with a medical bill.

Stop judging your fellow citizens and fighting against their health care and start fighting to reduce the cost of the best care imaginable. Attack what matters, the pharmaceuticals industry, surgical health providers, and medical equiptment these are the places where a $20 procedure gets ballooned into a $20,000 procedure.

Comment Re:Joke ? (Score 1) 999

She's gleefully in favor of infringing on constitutionally protected rights,

Taking your guns away once again, I assume?

supports nationally self-destructive immigration policies,

Are you referring to the couple thousand Syrian women and children fleeing the aftermath of your stupid war? Or the 12 million Mexicans he wants to load onto rail cars and dump into the desert, south of the 2000 mile wall you think he's actually going to build?

and wants to see the government involved in wildly more private sector activities, at both the business and personal level.

Does she want to dictate where iPhones can be manufactured? Or does she have a history of abusing eminent domain to seize people's property?

Comment The two-party system (Score 1) 999

WE HAVE MORE THAN TWO POLITICAL PARTIES IN THIS COUNTRY.

That's only technically true. The U.S. Constitution doesn't actually specify that there can only be two parties, but it arranges a winner-take-all system that organically results in the emergence of a two-party system. For a third party to gain a foothold, one of the two major parties has to fission roughly in half. (The last time this happened was before the Civil War, when the Whigs split up.) The U.S. has always had third parties, but each one is a satellite of one of the two major parties. (The Libertarian Party is a splinter off the Republican Party, and the Green Party is a splinter off the Democratic Party.) The reason that these parties stay small is obvious- if a Democrat votes Green, he knows it will help the Republicans, and if a Republican votes Libertarian, he knows it will help the Democrats. So the third parties only get a small number of protest votes (and only if these people don't stay home and watch Netflix).

This clearly has an effect on Senate elections. Also on the Electoral College during presidential elections, but states are reluctant to apportion electoral votes by the proportion of voters- since it means voters in that state exert less of an effect on the outcome of a presidential election than voters in winner-take-all states nearby.

Meanwhile the House of Representatives is controlled not by a majority of voters, not even by a majority of seats, but by a majority of a majority of seats. And that majority-of-a-majority isn't even answerable to the majority of voters in their districts, but to the (generally nutcase) minority that votes in primaries. Even if you disregard the ridiculous gerrymandering of districts, this isn't government by the people; it's government by a minority of a majority of a minority of the people. It's an absurd perversion of democracy and one of the biggest bugs in the Constitution.

Comment Re:Absurd Pile (Score 1) 999

The vast majority of which owe their national security to the US. Security which we are not properly compensated for. Trump will force our lazier "allies" to get their houses in order and shoulder more of the burden for protecting themselves.

The United States pays only 22.1% of the direct costs of NATO- about $500 million annually. (Germany pays 14.6%, France pays 10.6%, the UK pays 9.8%, Italy pays 8.4%, Canada pays 6.6%, Spain pays 5.8%, Turkey pays 4.3%, and the remaining 20 NATO allies- the Netherlands, Luxembourg, etc.- pay about 1% each on average.) On a per capita basis, the U.S. spends considerably less on NATO than either Germany or France.

The indirect costs of NATO, of course, are somewhat higher, as you'd naturally expect when a country voluntarily spends 54% of its discretionary budget on defense. That's totally nuts, and the way to address it would be to simply reduce military spending. But that's obviously not what he's proposing, since he knows it would get him booed off the stage. He's talking about keeping the military budget at present levels, and instituting a shakedown of NATO allies with an explicit threat to disregard our treaty obligations if countries don't pay up and are subsequently attacked. (The NATO treaty has been ratified by a Congressional supermajority, so this would be unconstitutional, but Trump insists that he can "negotiate" his way out of it and get a "better deal"- albeit one that could not possibly net us any more than $1 billion.)

Regardless of whether he intends to follow through on these statements or not, the mere fact that he's describing NATO in public as a protection racket instead of a treaty has already undermined national security. It's not as if both our NATO allies and Putin can't hear these rants (via "our Internet"), and the leaders of several of these countries have already expressed their suspicions that the United States might be willing to abrogate its treaty obligations if this fool gets elected. In fact Trump is making it clear that there could be no point in signing a treaty with the United States at all. It's now obvious to the rest of the world that the American political system has reached an ominous level of instability which is possibly sufficient to elevate a cretin like this to the presidency.

Comment Re:The basest, vilest (Score 1) 999

I don't recall any of those attacks being blamed on a youtube video by a Secretary of State and a President, let alone going after and investigating someone who made said video and using them as a scapegoat. Nor do I recall a Secretary of State lying to the families of those victims while telling people in private emails that it had nothing to do with a video.

Perhaps you could enlighten me?

Perhaps bold text can penetrate your thick skull. Once again, from the same 2014 article:

On the day of the attack, Islamists in Cairo had staged a demonstration outside the United States Embassy there to protest an American-made online video mocking Islam, and the protest culminated in a breach of the embassy's walls- images that flashed through news coverage around the Arab world. As the attack in Benghazi was unfolding a few hours later, Mr. Abu Khattala told fellow Islamist fighters and others that the assault was retaliation for the same insulting video, according to people who heard him.

Comment Re:Basically... (Score 1) 369

and then they have to go and add a full Ubuntu kernel as a subsystem.

There's no Ubuntu kernel there. It's the other way around - the kernel is still NT, with a Linux syscall emulation layer. The userland is full Ubuntu sans the kernel.

All in all, very similar to FreeBSD Linux emulation that has been around for a while in principle, if not in low-level architecture.

Comment Re:The basest, vilest (Score 4, Interesting) 999

Yes, the 87 does include some attackers (duh), but if you actually read what I wrote, you would "fucking realize" that many more Americans died during those attacks than in Benghazi.

Were there nine investigations into them? No, zero. How many front page stories even mentioned them? Zero. Generally Americans don't give a shit about human life unless the victims are American citizens, so there's no point even mentioning total casualties. But aside from 9/11 (a day when GWB was "keeping us safe") it seems that even American lives are only valued when the GOP is not in power.

Comment Re:The basest, vilest (Score 5, Informative) 999

The blaming a Youtube video part happened pretty fucking definitely.

This is from a New York Times article in 2014:

On the day of the attack, Islamists in Cairo had staged a demonstration outside the United States Embassy there to protest an American-made online video mocking Islam, and the protest culminated in a breach of the embassy's walls- images that flashed through news coverage around the Arab world.

As the attack in Benghazi was unfolding a few hours later, Mr. Abu Khattala told fellow Islamist fighters and others that the assault was retaliation for the same insulting video, according to people who heard him.

In an interview a few days later, he pointedly declined to say whether an offensive online video might indeed warrant the destruction of the diplomatic mission or the killing of the ambassador. "From a religious point of view, it is hard to say whether it is good or bad," he said.

No one who obsesses about Benghazi seems aware that during the George W Bush administration, there were 39 attempted attacks on U.S. embassies, 20 of which resulted in fatalities. The total death toll in those attacks was 87, including three confirmed to be U.S. civilians, and another 21 who worked at U.S. embassies or consulates and were either of American or foreign nationality.

The reason you might not have heard of those tragedies is that unlike Benghazi, no one exploited them for politics.

Comment Concrete evil (Score 1) 999

Trump, despite all the mud being thrown this way, has done very little concrete evil in comparison.

A $7.8 million contract for Trump Plaza was awarded to S&A Concrete, owned by Anthony "Fat Tony" Salerno. Trump World Tower was built with concrete from Quadrozzi Concrete Company, associated with the Lucchese crime family.

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