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Comment Re:ATT is NOT a charity (Score 2) 164

That was the way it was in rural areas (no electric grid) ;until as late as the 1960's (for those further out). Even with transmission lines crossing their properties, farmers and ranchers could not get electricity because "it just would not be profitable to serve them". The Electric Co-operative system alleviated this except for a few people in very remote areas. Where I am moving to in Bandera County Texas, the local electric co-op is working to put fiber to the premises in the denser rural areas. The last I looked a few years ago it still cost over $10,000 a mile to put in fiber.

Yes AT&T, Verizon, Comcast, Charter, Frontier and others need to make a profit; but what they want is a HUGE profit because that is what benefits the board of directors, presidents, vice-president, and directors the most. The real customers of these companies are the stockholders and not the people they provide services to. Due to the forces of the stock markets, the quarterly bottom line drives everything. This then causes the biggest problem these companies have in that they would like the Federal and State governments to hand them an oligopoly by preventing any entity but them to provide any internet services even if they are not going to put any into an area for the next few decades or century. This would probably include my electric co-op being stopped.

Comment Re:Google should just block Australia (Score 2) 26

I think the copyright holders of the world need to lobby to have all people wear a system whereby they can ascertain what an individual has heard or seen and send them and the source a bill for hearing or seeing the copyrighted work. I think that all music, all sounds, all books, all poems, and all physical items should be put under eternal copyright by someone (in the entertainment or publishing industry) so that even seeing a country side scene can put a person in jeopardy of copyright infringement.
(Sarcasm off)

Unfortunately I don't think I am far off the mark of a lot of people who think that everything should be "owned" (and by them).

Comment Re: An easier sollution (Score 1) 1144

Unfortunately you are wrong concerning Christian scripture. It is divided into two sections, that before The Christ, The Old Testament, and that written of and after The Christ, The New Testament.

The Old Testament centers around the history of the Jews with some history (in a more allegorical sense) before them. While the Jews were commanded to do warfare against their enemies up to and including wiping them out (not unusual 3000 years ago) to preserve themselves and their way, they were also commanded not to commit murder as the Hebraic word used in the Ten Commandments refers to murder and not killing. Properly rendered in modern English it might read "You shall not murder".

The New Testament never condones murder. The most emphatic statement is when The Christ states to turn ones cheek even "seventy times seven" (an Aramaic hyperbole to express a great many and not really a specific number) to ones enemy. Christians were commanded to submit to the authorities as long as it did not impinge on their beliefs. The closest to any violence is when The Christ tells his disciples to obtain a sword for self protection in the very violent world of the times 2000 years ago.

The Qu'ran is replete with commands to kill all unbelievers and even those who don't hold the same view of the Islamic religion. If you can find any factual basis in which Jews or Christians are commanded to kill unbelievers on that basis only, present it. Otherwise quite making baseless statements!!

Comment Re:Imputed Income! (Score 1) 146

Since you two are so bothered by truth, here are some citations:

Working Paper Series, Congressional Budget Office -- Taxation of Owner-Occupied and Rental Housing

This is from a Democrat Majority U.S. Congress along with a Democrat predominant Executive Branch (President and Departments). See page 3.

Taxing Homeowners as if They Were Landlords

Comment Imputed Income! (Score 1) 146

Oh great, now the information on taxing FOSS has been created. The government can now demand to know how much FOSS a person or company is using and then tax them on the "value" of it even though you paid nothing (and for individuals not earning anything from it).

If you don't know how a government does imputed income, let me cite an example that almost got done. The current US "regime" wanted to charge home owners who had taken a mortgage on a house years ago and were making relatively small payments by current rates, the difference between what their house would rent for (if it was more than the mortgage payment) and the mortgage payment as imputed income. Yes, if you were paying $500 a month and the house could rent for $1500, you would have to add $12000 to your annual income in "imputed" income.

Now take that and apply it to FOSS. One single distribution in use could be imputed to be worth thousands of dollars. Microsoft, Oracle and others would love to latch onto that and use it to kill FOSS if they can only get the government to do their bidding. The ability to do this in other countries may vary but probably not by much.

Comment Re:Regulation? (Score 1) 365

You've hit upon what I read into the OP. The writer seems to be moaning about anybody being able to write a program, period. I guess the OP might believe we should license all programmers after a sufficient course of education and only allow licensed programmers to have access to programming tools. The rest of you proles can take a hike and beg the Programmers to do something or pay them exorbitant amounts of money to get something.

I have seen this in industry where the IT people started to try to corner ALL programming in a company. They proposed that if it even slightly fell into the realm of programming, one would have to submit a proposal and MONEY to the programming group. They would then decided if was needed and prioritize it. Then six months to a year later one would get the first cut at the product. Fortunately the proposal/process died an early death.

Comment Could be just a Dalton Minimum (Score -1, Flamebait) 195

The Dalton Minimum occurred about 200 years ago primarily in the early 19th Century. It wasn't as severe as the Maunder Minimum but there was substantial cooling. But all of this is heresy to the disciples of the religion of AGW who have settled the political pseudo-science of AGW and threaten skeptics with "re-education", imprisonment or even death.

Comment You are wrong on the U.S. Constitutional breadth (Score 3, Insightful) 432

The Constitution of the United States (not your personal constitution, not the unwritten constitutional law of Great Britain, etc.) limits the Federal government to the regulation of Interstate Commerce. It should not have the scope to regulate business that does not cross the boundaries of the many States. For example, if I sell produce raised in the garden on my land to my neighbors or at a stand on the road I live on or even to a local store, I am not engaging in interstate commerce as my reach does not cross State lines. Now the State or the County or the City/Town/Village that I live in may regulate my business; but that is not encompassed by the U.S. Constitution. I know there are people who believe that we don't live in such an environment but in a totally top down government like those in many other parts of the world. And there are those who are wishing it were that way and even those who are fighting to make it top down. But it isn't so yet. Hillary Clinton is one of the latter. She and the Democrat Party would like nothing more than turning the States into mere departments of the Federal Government wherein the big cities of the East and West coasts could suck the money, life and freedom from the rest of the country. They desire the world of the Hunger Games.

'Nuf said.

Comment Re:Another great Scalia line (Score 2, Interesting) 1083

You are completely wrong on the 2000 election. They told the State of Florida that they could not selectively recount the ballots. There was an attempt to recount only in areas that were run by Democrats and therefore through some of the outrageous rules of the recount such as if a ballot counter thought that the Gore chad had been touched by the punching pen when neither chad was punched then the vote was to be counted for Gore. That is Democrat voting; yes, Lyndon Johnson's people fixed the ballot in Texas that got him to the House of Representatives and yes, The Dailey Machine in Chicago fixed the Illinois results that got John Kennedy elected.

The problem with this decision is that the many and several States of the United States are quickly being relegated to only departments of the Federal Government. For you foreigners that comment here please understand that the United States is not as unified governmentally as most of your countries are and the Federal Government is to have limited powers, as delineated in the Constitution of the United States, with all others being given to the States per the 10th amendment of the Constitution . This has crossed the line of that delineation in many, many minds.

Comment The Germans just need to do development in the US (Score 1) 177

While they are trying to change the laws back home they might as well do their development and testing in the United States. We currently have fewer restrictions here.

I agree with gstoddart about autonomous cars being able to be 100% hands off by the user at all times for normal driving regimes. If the companies that make them do it right then they should not be afraid of being 100% responsible when the vehicle is in autonomous mode. Some computer modeling of autonomous vehicles has shown a major drop in the number of accidents; hopefully this can be realized in real life. However, owners will have to have insurance to cover the vehicle as property and when they are operating it.

Comment Verizon isn't alone (Score 4, Informative) 94

I live in an area that is serviced by AT&T (Southwestern Bell doing business as). This is a rural area in North Texas near Fort Worth that has smaller holdings counted in acres or tens of acres and not generally hundreds of acres. This location is maybe 12 miles from the central office that services my land lines. Almost every time there are heavy rains or even ice or snow (remember, Texas) the phone lines go down. It takes nearly a week to get them repaired. But come the next weather event down they go. And cell phone service is not good. I can walk ten feet within my house and lose the connection with the cell tower.

AT&T expressed their disdain of Plain Old Telephone Service (POTS) (analog telephone over copper pairs) about 4 years ago when they filed a request for rule making with the FCC to outlaw POTS. They compared POTS to analog television and used the reasoning that if the FCC could force the switch to digital television and relegate analog television to the garbage bin of history, the FCC could do the same for POTS. I believe it was discussed here on Slashdot. This must have been their marketing department because AT&T didn't realize the technical impact this could have in densely populated areas that have extremely high telephone usage such as skyscrapers with a few thousand people that were constantly on the phone for business. It may be that VOIP would negate the problem but they actually focused on cell phone usage.

The big telephone companies keep dreaming of having everything go over to cell or other services that have MUCH higher profit margins than POTS. If the biggies make the service bad enough they hope they can drive people off of it.

Comment Re:Not surprising.-- Universal Service Fee (Score 4, Insightful) 94

The Universal Service Fee (i.e. Tax) that is on everyone's phone bill is supposed to cover the cost of doing this. Unfortunately, it has become just added profit as the phone companies (Verizon, AT&T, etc.) do not use it to subsidize rural phone service. If this was a Libertarian Paradise, you probably would pay $500 dollars a month for landline service while someone in a densely populated urban area would pay $5 a month. Cell phone service would have a greater disparity in price.

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