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Comment Re:No, they handle 1.2% of all retail sales (Score 1) 62

True, but if you talk to the brick&mortar stores or listen to the politicians (who want the tax revenue), you'd think that online sales are at 90% of all retail sales and climbing.

Amazon recently "reached an agreement" with my state. Starting next month Amazon will collect 8% sales tax on purchases made from my state. The problem is, my state sales tax is only 4%. Who gets the rest? My guess is Amazon, maybe with some kickback to the politicians who agreed to the deal. I have no proof; I just know how politicians are.

It looks like my days of ordering tons of stuff from Amazon are over. I may order a few items, IF the price +tax is better than other online retailers who still don't charge sales tax.

My thought has always been that sales tax should be collected at the point of purchase. If it were, online companies would be moving to states with lower sales taxes. That might be just the incentive that high tax states need to lower their damned taxes.

Comment Re:That would be the real game changer (Score 1) 122

Vacations. Really? I know lots of people who drive more than 300 miles on their jobs. They're not commuting; they're working. For example, one of my friends reads meters once a month. The meters are radio read, but you still have to drive to within range. He drives 350 miles in that one day of reading. Stop to charge a battery? Hell, he doesn't even stop for lunch.

My job involves traveling long distances twice a week. I'm not commuting daily; I'm just going to where I'm going to be working during the week. If I have to be in another state 300 or 400 miles from home in a reasonable amount of time, I have to have a vehicle that can get me there. Sure, it would be nice to have an electric-powered pickup truck, but where do I find a motel in a small town in the middle of nowhere with charging capability?

Comment This borders on being a general warrant (Score 3, Interesting) 364

The one thing the Founders wanted to guard against was general warrants. This warrant gets pretty close to being one. It was limited to a specific building, but next time it could be limited to a specific block, or even a specific city or county. I think they're building precedent for doing such things. If they get away with this one, then what's to stop them from going further?

Comment Re:Not enough people care (Score 1) 150

I've been regularly getting the prompt from Google about their privacy settings that they show when you try to run a search. Every browser on a myriad of machines and VMs. This pop-up is really irritating because it takes some time to go through all the different options and install their opt-out plugin, etc. I'm sure they made this as onerous as possible to discourage people form opting out. My solution? I've stopped using Google for web searches. Really f****** annoying that I still have to go to their sites because my cheap-arsed employer uses Gmail for our corporate email etc.

Comment Re:You're being silly (Score 1) 375

The evil libtardos aren't coming for your guns

They've been trying for 50 years and their repeated failures have been precisely because we take a hard line on the issue. Not one inch.

It's been 8 years. Don't you think if he was going to do it he would have?

He has done everything within the power of the executive branch. Operation Chokepoint was instituted to make it hard for gun related businesses to do business. He has blocked importation of perfectly legal guns from Russia and South Korea. He has been hostile to the American gun owner, even if he doesn't have the votes in congress to pass a new anti-gun law.


Comment Re:This is a terrible thing (Score 1) 596

"Is it THAT hard to understand?"

No but you are being very dense. An engineer can't become unqualified to be an engineer when he walks out of the office, nor can a doctor, nor can a lawyer, nor a plumber, nor a burger flipper. In fact, the professional bodies you refer to can take away their license but can not stop them from being qualified.

The woman IS a nurse, her education and experience doesn't disappear when she walks out of the office nor when she forms her opinion. Her legal obligation and liability for the consequences of sharing her opinion however should disappear insofar as it is no greater than anyone who could easily also have knowledge on a subject but doesn't get paid to employ that knowledge in their day job.

If I ask a doctor or lawyer friend their thoughts on something related to their profession at a party there is a very good chance I'll get a different answer than I would if I'd paid them for a consulation. I'm aware of their education yes, but they are not giving a professional response with all that entails, I'm a friend asking for their real opinion without the constraints of covering their ass professionally attached and also with the understanding they haven't had the opportunity to review the situation in full depth. Similarly, if I ask a friend who is a mechanic his thoughts on what I've seen happening with my car and a rough ballpark of what it would take to fix it, I don't expect that to carry the same weight as an actual inspection and quote. In a personal setting he might tell me the chances of something breaking are ridiculously low with very high costs and he wouldn't bother on his own vehicle, in a professional setting he might need to cover his rear and recommend fixing that same thing so he wouldn't be liable on the off chance this was the one time in a thousand something went wrong.

The personal opinion of someone who happens to be a professional is a different thing than the professional opinion of that same person.

Comment Re:You mentioned police, so... (Score 1) 596

Unless he is saying on the department page or some similar affiliated page, No, I don't. Trolling and talking shit on Facebook does not equate to really thinking or doing those things. Neither does doing the same in person when not at work.

You could just as easily be punishing the one guy who doesn't really feel that way and is saying what he thinks his co-workers will find funny to establish and maintain a work relationship. It could even be he and his co-workers all say such things not knowing the others secretly feel the same way and are afraid of breaking from the group.

Comment Re: OMG that's a dodgy check (Score 1) 325

Here's the problem I have with this:

Program Expenses
(Percent of the charityâ(TM)s total expenses spent on the programs and services it delivers)

This doesn't say exactly what those expenses ARE, because it could well be that they spend 95% of their "program expenses" on admin, salaries, bribes, and various other overhead, and that only 5% actually trickles down to the nominal recipients.

This is something I became aware of while perusing tax info from a particular class of charities -- where "administrative expenses" is typically charity-speak for "owner's salary"... explaining why "administrative expenses" tends to be an upper-five to lower-six figure number even for charities that are basically one-man bands.

Comment Re:Different election this time? (Score 1) 325

Someone pointed out that if Trump actually had a proper collection of skeletons, they'd already be on parade... if one jock-talk tape is the best they can do (at least, with documentation so the tale can't be promptly refuted by genuine witnesses) there probably isn't anything all that terrible waiting to be unearthed.

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