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Comment Re:Smart Phones and Schools (Score 1) 270

7F21: Three Men And A Comic Book

Bart: Please Dad!
Homer: No!
Bart: Please Dad!
Homer: No!
Bart: Please Dad! (And so on...)
Homer: No!!! Now look son we all know that usually when you bug me like this I give in, so I'm not mad at you for trying. It shows you have been paying attention. But we all know I'm not going to give you 100 dollars! Now are you going to stop bugging me?
Bart: No!
Homer: Are you?
Bart: No!
Homer: Are you?
Bart: No!
Homer: Are you? (And so on...)
Bart: OKAY!!

Comment Re:Food stamps (Score 1) 369

The problems with taxing muni bonds at the normal progressive tax rates is that wealthy people or institutional investors no longer have any incentive to finance public works...The problem with taxing long-term capital gains at the normal progressive tax rates is that wealthy people or institutional investors no longer have any incentive to invest in ownership stakes in those corporations

Isn't that like saying "The problem with taxing employment income at the normal progressive tax rates is that people will have no incentive to get a job"? Just because you tax one thing at a slightly higher rate than something else (or at a higher rate than has been done historically) doesn't mean it won't still be the better than the alternative options. Would that actually be the case for stocks or municipal bonds? I have no idea. But I'd say it's hardly a foregone conclusion.

Comment Re:Please Explain (Score 1) 127

If there's a 30% chance that someone will fall within the designated "average" range

Why would you assume there's only a 30% chance of that someone would fall within the middle 30 per cent of the range? That would only be true if we assumed for some reason that people would be uniformly distributed throughout the range.

and assuming the dimensions are roughly independent

Given that the dimensions all concern the physical size of the candidates I don't see why anyone would expect them to be independent. Someone that is very tall would, I assume, also be quite likely to have a long sleeve length for example.

Comment Re:Scrum Was Never Alive (Score 3, Informative) 371

That is absolutely required by Agile. Agile demands that if something takes more than one Sprint that you must not do it. Any big architecture problem that takes more than one Sprint cannot be done with Agile.

I am by no means an agile expert or advocate but I'm pretty sure agile doesn't say "No work item that would take longer than one sprint can be worked on", rather I think the idea is that any work item that would take longer than one sprint should be broken down into several smaller and more manageable work items.

Comment Re:Data cap scam (Score 1) 264

Can you explain to me how I requested the hundreds of thousands of bytes of port scan and malware scanning that comes in on my modem unrequested?

I never meant to suggest that you did. I was specifically replying to someone that said that "All the ads and most of the autoplay videos are superfluous to me". That's why I qualified my response with "In the context of a webpage".

So if I may turn the question around, in what sense are port / malware scans a webpage?

Comment Re:Data cap scam (Score 2) 264

The problem I have with charging by the byte is a lot of bytes I get are not something I asked for. All the ads and most of the autoplay videos are superfluous to me and I would object to having to pay for something forced on me like that.

In the context of a webpage the ads are data you asked for, from a certain point of view. You requested a web page. Part of that web page's contents is ads (as ad revenue is how the page creator can afford to offer you a webpage in the first place). If you don't want the ads, don't request the webpage.

Comment Re:Rewards card (Score 1) 386

Not all of the transaction fee goes to the transaction processor. A fraction goes to the lending institution. And it is from this fraction that lending institutions are able to offer cash back or travel rewards to those cardmembers most able to repay.

That sounds highly plausible. Never the less it may still not be worth it from the perspective of the lending institution to give you a higher credit limit if you are regularly not paying them interest. The amount they make from their cut of the transaction fees might not make up for the increased cost of default, especially if , as you say, some portion of those fees goes back to the card holder in the form of cash back or perks.

Also worth noting that sometimes the "bonus reward points" you're getting are being offered "free" by a third party (eg the Air Miles people) strictly so that they can gain access to your purchase history for marketing purposes.

Comment Re:I have no debt and a hefty savings account (Score 1) 386

But opportunity costs aren't *real* costs that get posted to a ledger.

Perhaps not but you're still an idiot if you ignore them.

Since they make money from merchants on transaction fees (or do only Visa, MC, AmEx, etc earn the fees?), bumping up your credit limit allows them to earn a larger transaction fee.

As I understand things it's usually the credit card company (VISA, MC, etc) that keeps the transaction fees and the lending institution that keeps the interest, but I suppose it's possible that varies from card to card.

Comment Re:Swipe fee (Score 1) 386

Getting a bigger credit limit only to use it for larger payments just means you cost them more.

This biased source claims the opposite: $3 of every $100 you spend goes to the banking industry. In fact, American Express started out without revolving credit at all, instead requiring cardmembers to pay in full each month and relying on these swipe fees.

As I understand these things (and I could well be wrong) most credit cards involve two different parties, the transaction processor (eg VISA) and the lending institution (eg your bank). The $3 (or whatever) transaction fee goes to the transaction processor for handling the transaction. The interest payments (if any) go to the lending institution (for actually putting up the money that gets loaned out).

So it's true that VISA would probably love for you to have a bigger credit limit as a higher limit means you're more likely to make additional purchases and thus garner them more transaction fees. However the lending institution is the one that decides what your credit limit is because they're the ones that have to front the money and take the risk of default. And since the lending institution makes their money off interest payments, and if you're constantly paying off your entire balance they make no interest, a higher credit limit is just increased risk for them with no benefit.

Comment Re:I have no debt and a hefty savings account (Score 1) 386

Getting a bigger credit limit only to use it for larger payments just means you cost them more.

I can't figure out why you'd cost them more. Please clarify.

It's mostly an opportunity cost kind of thing. With every credit card I've ever had you pay no interest as long as you pay off the balance in full by the payment date. This means that, if you always pay off the balance, the bank is effectively giving you an interest free loan from the time you make the purchase until the time you make the payment. The bank could invest that money they loaned you in just about any other investment and make more than 0% return on it. Giving you a bigger credit limit just means they'd be allowing you to take an even bigger interest free loan.

Comment Re:Let's get this out of the way (Score 2) 447

Yep. and while I'm generally against meddling lawyers and all...THIS is one online app I'd like to see crucified by the legal types out there.

To play devil's advocate, what's the legal basis for "crucifying" an app like this? Random people already have the ability to review anyone without their consent. To my knowledge, there's no law that prevents me from starting my own personal website and publishing my personal opinions about you or anyone else I might care to "review".

If what I say is untrue or grounds for harassment there are already laws in place to deal with that (as the GP suggested, that's what libel laws are for), but you would (as far as I understand such things) have to sue me for making the untrue statement and not my web host for enabling me to distribute it.

I don't think this app is a particularly good idea. But I don't think it can be a priori outlawed without falling afoul of free speech considerations.

Comment Re: Amazing (Score 3, Insightful) 492

No, that is not free market labor. Free market labor is anyone who can get a job offer in an area they are allowed to be in can take the job.

<devilsadvocate>So your definition of a free market is one where the government (who explicitly decides who is allowed to be in the country) gets to decide who can and can't participate in trade?</devilsadvocate>

Don't get me wrong, I think labor is a classic example of where a regulated market is better for everyone overall. But it's still a pretty regulated market.

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