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Comment To be more precise (Score 2, Informative) 77

Novell's Chief Marketing officer stated:

Here's a message from Novell about the merger, from John Dragoon, Chief Marketing Officer: On November 22, 2010, Novell issued a press release announcing a definitive merger agreement under which Attachmate Corporation (“Attachmate”) would acquire Novell for $6.10 per share in cash (“Merger Agreement”). Novell will continue to own Novell’s UNIX copyrights following completion of the merger as a subsidiary of Attachmate. Novell filed a Form 8-K/A with the SEC on November 22, 2010, with respect to the Merger Agreement.

That is, Novell will be a subsidiary of Attachmate and Novell will continue to own the copyrights.

Comment Re:Two Pictures, Three Stories (Score 1) 976

In some early photo-radar locations, there was a loophole that nobody ever caught onto.

The citations gave an option of identifying the driver and address. If the address of the "identified driver" was foreign, the citation was immediately dismissed.

And one municipality had a maximum time during which the company handling the ticket had to issue the final ticket. If the owner of the vehicle waited until the last minute to identify the driver, there was not enough time to reissue the citation to the identified driver and so it was dismissed.

For a while, citations to anyone driving a rent-a-car were dismissed simply because the rental companies wouldn't respond to the citations. After much digging, a list of the correct addresses to send the citations for each major rental car company was made. After that, requests for identification of the drivers were promptly made by the rental car companies.

Comment Re:Wake up, idiot. (Score 1) 976

My solution to red light cameras is to drive 10-20 mph below the speed limit in any town that used red light cameras.

If those cities were really interested in safety, they could more easily do so, and at all light controlled intersections, by merely increasing the yellow light a second or two.

By the way, when New York City issued their RFP for red light cameras, the first city in the U.S. to do so, I was head of R&D for a radar company and wrote most of our proposal in response to their RFP. We were also working very hard back then to get the Washington DC contract. At the time, I thought that red light cameras would work well, but the actual results have convinced me otherwise.

While I was head of R&D at that company, we were also approached about developing a similar system for railroad crossings. Nothing ever came out of that, though.

Comment Re:if you're in the intersection and it's red (Score 1) 976

In places that I'm familiar with, the requirement that you be able to clear the intersection means that if the cross traffic is backed up so bad that you won't be able to clear the intersection even when the light changes, then you must wait before entering the intersection.

My understanding is that just being in the intersection when the light turns red and then completing the turn normally is not impeding traffic.

Comment Re:if you're in the intersection and it's red (Score 5, Informative) 976

In Texas, if you are in the intersection when the light turns red, then you didn't run a red light. Furthermore, you have the legal right of way to clear the intersection before crossing traffic may enter.

For unprotected left turns, that's why I pull out into the intersection during the green or yellow light and wait for the oncoming to stop before completing my left hand turn.

Comment Re:Why do we care if global warming is real? (Score 1) 822

1. We do nothing about global warning until it is undeniably in full force (maybe in 25 years, 50 years, 100 years or 200 years), if it ever happen. The consequential scenarios are: - Humanity faces an unprecedented crisis that leads to our extinction.

The realistic worst case projections are relatively minor. The possible extinction projections are pure hysteria.

- Humanity faces an unprecedented crisis and with its ingenuity it mitigate the crisis, while a set back in history (maybe thousands, millions or billions dies), humanity continue to strive.

The crisis would be if global cooling were to happen instead. Instead of some possibility so remote that it only exists in the hysterical, global cooling of any but the most minimal magnitude would indeed kill billions.

- Nothing happen and Humanity continue to do what it does now without suffering any consequences of our current behavior.

If nothing happens, but we hobble our economies with useless activity that accomplishes nothing, the consequences are enormous.

Is global warming real? I don't care. Act now!

Panic does noone any good.

If global warming turns out to be real and it turns out not to be beneficial, we have plenty of time to counter the worst effects. That is, plenty of time as in "at least a century".

Comment Whether global warming exists is not the question (Score 1) 822

The questions we should be asking, but aren't, go much further.

First, of course, is the question of whether or not it is actually happening. The answer is far from clear. And if we can't answer that, then it is ridiculously stupid to be paniced by a bunch of hysterical politicians spend billions or trillions of dollars to fix something that may not even be broken. And the term "politicians" includes those so-called climate scientists who have ceased being scientists in their quest to become advocates of their own global warming religion. Furthermore, if we can't even determine whether or not it is happening, than we have plenty of time to try to do something later if needed.

After that is the question of what, if anything, we can effectively do to slow it down or stop it. If we don't understand the problem, then anything we do is likely to be far from ineffective and may accomplish nothing at all. Why should we destroy our economy for little more than a hysterical nightmare?

Third is the question that hardly anyone is asking or even thinking about. The global warming advocates all take the answer for granted without even thinking about it. That is the question of whether or not we should do anything if global warming is happening and if there are some effective things we can do to combat it. Global warming is likely to be overwhelmingly beneficial for most life on Earth including mankind. Sure, if global warming occurs, there will be some people who come out behind. But global warming means longer growing seasons, especially toward the poles. Large expanses of land would become available for growing crops.

The real disaster would be global cooling. If that occurs, expect billions of people to starve to death. Remember that in the fossil record, periods of cooling, not warming, are the climatological causes of mass extinctions. If global warming helps postpone the next ice age or lessen its effects, the benefits to mankind and other animal life are clear.

There is no reason to panic. Far from it. There is plenty of reason to welcome global warming.

It's time for scientists to go back to doing science. Those who can't should go find some other work and get out of the way of the real scientists.

Comment Re:The Farmers are Right (Score 1) 376

Except when cattle are commingled at the slaughterhouse - infection could be spread there.

By far the major problem is cross-contaimination at the slaugherhouse/packing plant.

I would bet that if you looked at the number of deaths in the United States over the last 50 years that resulted from eating contaminated beef. you would find that all, or nearly all, were from contamination that occurred after the animal was slaughtered.

Comment Re:Regulation (Score 1) 376

The food industry doesn't need these regulations at all.

If you consider the actual diseases that make it to the consumers from meat, they are invariably the result of contamination or cross-contamination of meat at the packing plant. Where the animal came from prior to that makes no difference at all.

As for BSE, it has not been much of a problem here. When a cow with BSE was imported a couple of years or so ago, it took only about 24 hours to track it. It is doubtful that the cow would have been tracked any faster with NAIS.

If you want to look at the real threats to our meat supply, look at the animals being brought in from Mexico with relatively little oversight.

Considering the size of the food supply, there have been very few problems at the producer level. The problems that have occurred are after that.

Comment Re:Missing option: (Score 1) 913

After 20 years, my kid will have paid $2.3 million in sales taxes. Anything he spends after that means that the government will collect more tax revenue from the initial $10 million, than if he had spent 100% of it right away.

There is a concept known as "Present Value".

In your example, the government may collect more tax revenue, but the Present Value of that stream of tax revenue will be less.

Comment Re:Missing option: (Score 1) 913

Look, obviously there are more poor people supported by social safety nets than people living off inheritance, but it does cut both ways.

Obviously there are more poor drawing welfare, but the welfare for the rich is incredibly larger.

This year, the welfare for the rich is so big that the welfare for the poor is nearly nothing in comparison.

Comment Re:Missing option: (Score 1) 913

If you want to see what the Fair Tax would be like, you have to look no further than the disaster that was the Luxury Tax in the early 1990s. It was a tax on luxury jewelry, luxury cars, and luxury boats.

The first year's expected tax revenue was several billion dollars, but the actual revenue was on the order of a few million. What it didn't take into account was that by raising the cost, people's spending behavior would change drastically.

I don't know specifically how it affected the jewerly and automobile business, but it certainly just about put ever American sailboat business out of business. They laid off nearly every builder and salesman around. If it hadn't have been repealed reasonably quickly, those business would likely have been gone for good.

One frequent argument is that the Fair Tax won't increase costs at all because the base charges of items will decrease by about as much as the Fair Tax. But the only possible way that can happen is if all the employees also take a pay cut so that their take-home pay after the Fair Tax is the same as before. You should know as well as I know that that is not going to happen. In reality, pre-taxes prices will stay pretty much the same and the Fair Tax would make everything far more expensive.

The Fair Tax also presupposes that it is revenue neutral. That is, the total tax revenue with the Fair Tax will not change from the total tax revenue of the current Income Tax. Since the Fair Tax will be collected only on the sales of new merchandise, the very wealthy who pay the vast majority of the income taxes will only be taxed on what they buy. If a person makes $10,000,000 a year, but only spends $500,000 a year and invests the rest, their total taxes would be approximately $167,000 for an effective tax rate of 1.67%.

Guess who will be making up that difference? Not the poor. It will be the middle class and lower upper class that will pay the vast amount of taxes. If you make $75,000 to $500,000 a year, expect your tax load to increase dramatically as the tax rate is increased to make up for the massive reductions in tax revenue as people change their spending habits.

The Fair Tax also supposed that the Income Tax will be abolished. That's not going to happen at all. In all likelihood, we would end up with both the Fair Tax and the Income Tax -- that's the only way they could bring up the same tax revenue as now -- the Fair Tax can't do it.

In that respect, the Fair Tax is kind of like a VAT. (Note that I didn't claim it is a VAT, but that it is kind of like a VAT.) What happened to all those countries that created a VAT? Did they get rid of their Income Taxes? Not hardly. Their combined taxes have climbed higher and higher as a result of having both.

Remember that any law that is passed including the Fair Tax, the law can easily be amended. It may require the abolishment of the Income Tax, but how long do you think it would be before it was quietly amended to keep both?

If we must have taxes, we need to go to a Flat Tax with very few deductions. My suggestion is two deductions -- a $15,000 deduction per family member and a $15,000 deduction per household. Thus, a single person with no kids would pay the tax on all income over $30,000 while a family of four would pay the tax on all income over $75,000.

Comment Re:Distributions must use blockers as a standard. (Score 1) 203

Obviously ssh should be off by default.

I don't think that is obvious at all. Quite the contrary -- ssh is probably the most secure method one has of connecting. Better to leave it on and turn off things like telnet.

I would like to see the password login shut off by default. If soneone wants to use plain passwords on ssh, let them edit the /etc/ssh/sshd_config file themselves to enable them.

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