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Comment None of this matters. (Score 1) 80

The merger will go through, regardless of what anybody says. Dollars are the literal coin of the realm, and Congress is incapable of responding to anything else. And, as has been pointed out, these companies have been spending millions to get their attention. So get ready for lousier service, data caps and higher prices. Because it's "good for the consumer".

Comment I agree with Schilling... (Score 0) 908

The used game market is killing the very industry that it is feeding off of. Companies like GameStop now attribute over 60% of their annual revenues to used console games. They are leeches who feed off both the gamers and the industry. Or have you not noticed how they will pay you the equivalent of 10-15% of the value of a game you trade in, then immediately turn around and re-sell it for just $5 less than the retail price? It is a rip-off, plain and simple, that screws both gamers and the game companies.

Don't like the current pricing of video games? In 1978 a typical AAA title for the Atari 2600 game system cost $59.99. IN 1978 DOLLARS. This was a game on a cartridge with perhaps 16 KB of total storage capacity, and a development budget of less than $150,000. Today of course, development budgets for the best game franchises START at around $30m per title. Some, like the Modern Warfare games, have dev budgets in excess of $60m each. This, for games that support hundreds of hours of play and can fit on a dual-layer DVD. The retail price? Still $59.99.

I strongly suggest everyone calling for boycotts and piracy take a hard look at the industry, and understand that it's not the game developers and publishers that are ripping them off. It's the RETAILERS who are ripping everyone off, up and down the line. The developers and publishers are just trying to get back money that is rightfully theirs.

Comment Um... (Score 1) 1

No. We already have over 8000 satellites, pieces of debris, flotsam etc, in Earth orbit. That space junk alone is a major hazard. Can you imagine how many more times they would have to shift the ISS in its orbit every time one of these things got too close?

Comment Well, in fairness... (Score 1) 84

... it was in 1883. How many observatories did Earth even HAVE back then? This was before radar, before computers, before telephones. Normal photography was in its infancy and astrophotography didn't exist yet. Telescopes were still aimed by hand. Whatever it was, I can easily believe that only one guy on Earth just happened to be observing the Sun during daytime and saw a transit of objects that nobody else reported.

Comment Hmmm... (Score 1) 1

Funny how people with an agenda can take things out of context. The author of that article is of course, a right-wing ideologue. However the information I have read suggests that cosmic rays may have "some" effect on climate, but that effect is not fully understood. And the sun? Yeah I'm sure it's the reason Earth stays warm, but it's not getting any closer to us. Is the Earth warming up? Sure it is, for the moment. That much is indisputable. But is it warming up FOR ALL TIME? Highly unlikely. Is man the cause? Again, unlikely. Can man have any effect on it at all, through a change in behavior or anything else? Ha! No. Our biosphere is far too complex and resilient to be undone by such small effects. Earth was around for billions of years before man arrived, and will be here long after we're gone. It went through many warming/cooling cycles, most of which were due to a combination of factors that didn't include mankind, and occurred on a scale surpassing all the energy we have produced since the invention of fire. As with previous "greenhouse" eras and ice ages, nature will eventually balance the equation again this time as well. However, that doesn't make for a very entertaining Discovery Channel special, and is too complex to be covered in an hour. The current climate change "debate" is mainly pseudoscience blended with public relations, playing on ignorant people's fears and bordering on religious hysteria (do you "believe" in global warming? What kind of scientific question is that??). So why is there continued fear about it, mainly from people who are decidedly NOT climatologists? So that a wooden public speaker like Al Gore can continue to get lecture gigs I guess.

Comment Not really surprising (Score 1) 1

Competition between consumer products always eventually distills itself down to a 2-horse race (in this case, iOS vs Android). There is basically no room in the market for a 3rd one. If Microsoft wanted any chance at all of competing, they should have introduced this phone 2 years ago before Android established itself, or they should have targeted a different market.

Comment Should have been done long ago... (Score 2, Interesting) 449

I supported the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, but I do not support the way they were handled. I do think the military-industrial complex should have been abolished long ago. Why? Because what has it done to protect us, really? Vietnam? It didn't help us win. Grenada? Yeah right. A banana republic with a few Cuban troops that our Salvation Army could have whipped. Panama? See above. Gulf War I? We didn't win that war, remember? We stopped just short of victory, a violation of one of the most fundamental principles of war that history has ever taught us: never leave an aggressor intact. We had to go back and do the job right in 2003. Somalia? We were trying to help those people, they started shooting at us, so we left. Confrontation with Saddam's forces while enforcing the no-fly zones and inspectors? Come on. We had about 20,000 troops in theater at the time. We don't need to spend $400b a year to maintain THAT, or any of our other troop commitments around the world. Iraq War and Afghan War? We took an army with a military doctrine of slowing down a Soviet tank advance across Europe just long enough for our ICBMs to reach Moscow, and tried to use it to fight two major land wars in Asia. Big mistake. We SHOULD have immediately instituted a draft after 9/11, converted factories to war production, raised a massive army (like, 5 million men), and when the time was right, rolled into Iraq with at least a million strong. The PROPER way to occupy a country you defeat is to make sure your occupying troops are in every city, town and village so they can establish ORDER. That wasn't done. You can only spread 100,000 troops so far in a country if 28 million. And we have all seen the results. They always make the same mistakes, thinking you can do war "on the cheap". You can't. But I am encouraged by Secretary Gates' plan. It may be a step in a direction we should have gone in decades ago.

Comment Monday morning quarterbacks... (Score 2, Insightful) 265

And still people criticize us for sending in troops to impose order and stability, in a place that never had it to begin with. I got news for you bleeding hearts. If you want to help those people, re-establish law and order first. Once that is done, the business of distributing food and water, rebuilding infrastructure, re-establishing basic public services like sanitation etc, becomes infinitely easier.

Comment Welcome to the future... (Score 1) 2

...where merit counts for nothing, and need is all that matters. Kinda like what's happening in this country now. Who cares what you accomplish; people with more power than you have decided you earn too much money and that it must be taken from you to be given to those more "deserving".

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