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Submission + - Car dealers are awful. It's time to kill the dumb laws that keep them in busines (vox.com)

schwit1 writes: Buying a cars involves going from dealer to dealer, each of whom has his own inventory. One guy only has blue paint. The other guy doesn't have the blue paint, and also only has dark gray seats. And each has his own fake sticker prices and complicated cash-back offers. It's no wonder 83 percent consumers say they would rather skip the haggling, and a third of people say doing taxes is less annoying than working with a car dealer.

But it's not just the hassle. State bans on direct sales turn out to cost consumers an enormous amount of cash. It's an enormous problem, and it warrants a federal solution.

Cars are the most expensive consumer product that the typical consumer buys. And while it may seem obvious that cars are expensive due to the material and labor required to build them, the logistics of distributing cars is actually a very expensive part of the process. Research by Eric Marti, Garth Saloner, and Michael Spence has concluded that as much as 30 percent of the cost of a car is the cost of distribution

Comment My Prediction (Score 1) 236

Groups will come out proclaiming how many lives will be saved by allowing Law Enforcement, DHS, CIA, FBI, School Crossing Guard to have the ability to disable/control Self-Driving cars, it will probably be "children" that will be saved

Any opposition that proclaims Rights, Liberty, or even cold hard facts that will dispute these Groups, will be shouted down as cold-hearted, unconcerned for safety etc.

Comment Re:In other words... (Score 2) 289

Technically, I think the states are saying that only the Legislative Branch has the authority to create laws.

I agree with the states on this one (begrudgingly as they just want kickbacks). Laws are created by the Legislative Branch, however the U.S. has long been in this muck of government created agencies given the power to create laws by "interpreting" law.

Example 1, BATFE says that it's perfectly legal to by the assisted shooters brace and put it on a "Pistol" that shoots a rifle caliber. The device was designed by a disabled veteran to allow other disabled vets to shoot rifle caliber pistols, and for those handicapped it works very well. Well American ingenuity realized that you could use the brace as a stock, and essentially have a SBR (Short Barreled Rifle)*. BATFE saw it, and said who cares... Months later the BATFE came back and did a "clarification" on their original stance, stating it's perfectly legal to install said device... but it's ILLEGAL if you place the device on your shoulder ?! All the while completely leaving the U.S. Congress and Senate out of the law making equation.

Example 2, BATFE moves to outlaw XM855 ammo as "armor penetrating". XM855** is a 5.56 round for the M4/AR type Rifles... news flash all standard hunting rounds are armor piercing. Kevlar vest isn't stopping a 30-06 round anytime soon. Not to mention the idea of banning armor piercing rounds was for pistols duh, it's in law.

I used Pro/AntiGun examples for a reason... The above examples could be "good" or "bad" policies depending on where you stand on the issues, but, in the long run you should agree that government agencies creating laws is bad. One day you'll be cheering them, the next generation you'll be hating them. Elected officials should make laws, not government agencies hand picked by the President, that can just circumvent the process. One day these agencies can be controlled by a Social Progressive, the next a Fundamentalist Christian.

* Note SBRs are legal albeit with a $200 tax stamp.
** XM855 is a seriously poor performing round, but it's inexpensive.

Comment Re:Not self directed but able to compensate (Score 1) 216

>I'm also betting in your example of GPS, they subsequently rediscovered that if you don't have the underlying navigation skills you're pretty much screwed when the technology goes ofline.

Agreed, but took a bit of time. Military seems to be quick to make decesions, but slow to recognize the shortcomings of those decisions.

I can remember showing up to the motorpool at my first duty station in 1990, and looking at the HUMVEE I was assigned and saying aloud.. "Where's the armor? These doors are made of plastic, like a trashbag"

Then 2001 rolls around, and I'm thinking man.. they really need to add armor to these vehicles...

2004... CNN runs a story of soldiers who are trying to cobble together armor plating from scrap to place on their vehicles.

Reminds me of an interview I saw with Ben Thomas, where he explained that it took a war to replace years of Dogma when it came to military equipment for the soldier. Specifically he was referencing the Chest Rig replacing H-Style gear, but it applies in other areas as well.

Comment Re:Not self directed but able to compensate (Score 2) 216

These are factors that a shooter would compute for long range shots (temp, wind, barom. pressure etc.) . So it's no surprise they're trying to simplify. So couple this with the autoscoping technoglogy, and I wonder what future sniper courses will look like, and will they continue to teach basics. Sorta reminds me when Army initially moved to GPS and started to lower the priority/importance of Map/Compass Land Navigation .

Comment Re:Oh this is easy .... (Score 5, Interesting) 394

Four digit codger here, I rm'd my facebook profile over a couple of years ago and haven't looked back. It's refreshing. As an uber tek nerd, mmo fiend, etc. now "old codger", take it from me... rm facebook, rm your mmo, limit Steam to a few hours a week, and go outside. Hike, Fish, buy a cheap sailboat and goto the Bahamas or the Keys. Stop searching online for that cool landscape wallpaper for the latest greatest distro you installed, and go outside and see that beautiful landscape in person.

Comment What I've Learned (Score 2) 1168

Anyone can claim to Christian.

Jesus stated: "Love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul and all your might, AND Love your neighbor as yourself"

If you claim to be a Christian, and can't love those who you believe to be are "lost" (or bake them a cake), you may as well claim to be a Super Sayijin.. as both claims are pretty farfetched.

Comment User Experience (Score 1) 254

Went to the site, typed in a search, results sucked, back to google.

This is like Linux on the desktop, you'll struggle to get what you really want... when there's an alternative available that gives you what you want the first time without the struggle.

They appear to be in the "Slackware" on floppies stage, call me when they're in the "Mint" stage.

Comment Still VMWare (Score 1) 417

With production enterprise experience with Xen, HyperV, and VMWare hosting linux VMs.

It's still VMware, just based on some of the showstopping issues encountered with Xen and HyperV.

It's only a matter of time until VMWare competitors catch up, which is good for all of us, however based on my personal experience VMWare is still my preference.

Note, environments vary. Just based on environments I've worked with.

Comment Re:Bust (Score 1) 235

You are absolutely correct, and I'm sure a majority of HP employees see it your way. Unfortunately, Cxx's don't listen to the little people below. As they will explain that "you just don't understand the big picture". Big Picture is only 3 months long, quarter to quarter.

Rarely do you see a leader with guts, vision, and the ability to make intelligent decisions based on a long term strategy.

What happened to the fundamentals. Just make a damn good product, offer it at a competitive price, and offer damn good support.

Comment Support Worthless? (Score 1) 666

"Our CIO is convinced that technical support for any product is worthless"

Has your CIO ever supported an application environment that included: Oracle RAC, DB2, Weblogic, OSB(aka ALSB), Websphere, Websphere Commerce, or heck a computer?

I would advise in creating a Risk Assessment (aka CYA Signoff) that outlines the risk HE is assuming by not purchasing support. Get his signoff on the Risk Assessment. You'll be surprised how quickly higher ups change their tune, when they realize their decisions are actually documented, and they can't just toss some lowly admin under the bus when it takes hours to recover from a production outage. When you do a Risk Assessment, schedule a meeting with the parties involved, DB Team, Networking, etc. If you can invite a Business side guy, even better.

I know it sucks! I like fast moving companies, that make solid decisions... but sometimes you have to play the game, to avoid catastrophe.

Normally, I would say this will help, in this case, whereas your CIO is against all support, it will only CYA when you have an outage during production hours, and the CIO tries to lay the blame on you.

I'm not familiar with your environment, so unless this project is a smallish LAMP wiki for internal use, I would be concerned.


Experiment Shows Not Washing Jeans for 15 Months is Disgusting But Safe 258

dbune writes "Young people who argue with their parents over wearing the same pair of smelly jeans can now cite the work of a 20-year old University of Alberta student who wore the same jeans for 15 months straight. From the article: 'Josh Le wore the same pair of jeans to break in the raw denim, so it would wrap the contours of his body, leaving distinct wear lines. He had his textile professor test the jeans for bacteria before washing them for the first time. The results showed high counts of five different kinds of bacteria, but nothing in the range of being considered a health hazard."

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