4268 posts • joined 30 Nov 2011
Re: @Don Jefe - Unravel thy knickers, please.
I'll grant you, you didn't deserve the fucking idiot. The evil spirit living in the curry I had for dinner last night deserves that. I've been up since 4AM and even my hand quilted toilet paper isn't soft enough at this point. It's real shame hog oilers went out of fashion. I would have one installed in my throne room if I could find an actual old one that matched my decor.
In seriousness, you didn't deserve that, and I offer my apologies. My problems shouldn't be yours and I know better. I don't have time to respond to your, much better mannered than mine post, but I will do so this evening. Again, apologies.
Re: anti semitism question
Those aren't fairly tales. That's the mixing of philosophies of social interaction and the black management of prophecy. Social interaction philosophies can't be judged out outside of the immediate point in time in which they were formulated. They are the practical result of social morals which are subject to change at any point and that's why I can't waterboard smarmy neighbors in this country anymore.
But prophecy, is truly the blackest of social management practices. As close to evil as you can get. All you need is a single individual with an overdeveloped gift of persuasion (and no ethics) and a single powerful person with debilitating existensial dread and presto self fulfillo! You've got entire nations living in fear (or hope) of the future and are willing to do anything to get on the not dead side of the equation they are unwillingly constructing.
So it's pretty easy to see how a guy shows up and seems to fit all the criteria and genealogy for your thousand year old prophecy but instead of being a kipha puppet (no socks and sandals, that's crucial) and delivering righteous ocular trauma says 'fuck, was that supposed to hurt' and moving your long awaited kingdom on Earth to a much further away place would piss people off. By far the best thing to do is call it a research error and tack the troublesome person to a tree. Otherwise all the benefits that are always responsible for making a small core set of prophecy advocates super rich, on the backs of others, look really stupid and unnecessary.
The fairy tales are completely different and deal with flaming swords hiding a mystical garden, magic luggage, talking asses, pillars of smoke and fire, alien rape, necromancy and zombies. It's important to distinguish between the social management guidelines and fairy tales because if you don't then it gets very confusing and could conceivably lead to a situation in which politics and magic are mixed in caustic ways that might very well result in 2,000+ years of strife and misunderstanding.
God, that must have been such a messy job. It's a wonder the map isn't all stuck together. Must be printed on Tyvek.
Re: kenny is innocent
We've little unincorporated villages here called Kilfish, Kiltrout (which I'm quite nearly certain is a joke directed at Kilfish, but the, presumably hilarious, story has been lost to time), Kilrex and a Kilroy. We've no Killeshandra, which I suspect is indicative that all the Shandras were successfully exterminated which is reinforced by the fact I've never met a Shandra.
My 'knickers are in a bunch' because people like you are responsible for many of the deaths caused 'by religion' because they don't even read what they're responding to. Lot of short fused closet theologians obviously need to go back into the closet and brush up on both your secular and religious history.
If you had botherd to read before prematurely pontificating you would have seen that I wasn't defending religion, by a long shot, but eviscerating the idiots that gather under a flag they don't understand and then foist the resultant destruction, and blame, onto anybody but themselves.
My ancestors were killing Englishmen before the Englishmen decided to call themselves Englishmen. How many Englishmen have I killed? My Grandfather probably killed a few, by proxy, but he was engineering landmines, so it wasn't personal (I'm fairly sure he didn't like anybody). Nor do I wear a kilt when I get up every morning and switch on the machines and greet my staff, both capable of building the most advanced weapons known to man, but use those things to make zero weapons, won't do it, no matter the loss. So nope, seems I can't blame my ancestors for my actions either. Over 1100 years of violent warmongers produces me, but I have free will, just as every other Human does, so I get to determine what I do, why and when, nobody else.
As I said in my earlier post, past the third sentence, so you obviously never got that far, all people have free will as well. Unfortunately, far too many are too cowardly to express it and just hop on the first bandwagon that doesn't cast them out. Just like you not to put too fine a point in it. Rushing in to claim your seat on the 'blame train' bound for nowhere. You made that decision (I'm going to blame your parents for not teaching you to read) and you're obviously fine with practicing the same delusional behavior as the 'religious' because you're blaming a god you claim not to believe in, ancestors you've never met, and the Jews, anybody, but the people your god supposedly endowed with free will.
Make no fucking mistake about it. If you're blaming religion, instead of individuals, for the destruction caused 'by religion' then you're acknowledging their god has control over them and therefore acknowledging a god I'm sure you claim to deny, but because you didn't read the fine print on the back of the Atheism train ticket before you followed your herd you've got no fucking idea how to do that correctly either.
So, just so we're clear, when I say you're a fucking idiot that's me saying that. Just me, when you respond, or downvote me or feel even more foolish than you normally do who are you going to blame for that? A god you don't believe in, but controls others? Your ancestors? Your parents? The Irish, Jews, French, the Pikeys? Me? Or are you going to blame yourself for being a fucking idiot? If it's anybody but yourself you're wrong, think on it and try again.
Re: anti semitism question
I don't want this to come off wrong, but I think 'the Jews' may have history's worst case of Inerphalangeal Arthrodesis (fused knuckles) and it results in a pointing finger always extended outward. I realize and group of people is going to be comprised of all sorts, but people have hated the Jews since before Romulus and Remus found a hill with good drainage to set their tent on.
There's a bad habit that's reflected in all of their historical writings; hell Josephus probably liked the smell of even his worst farts. There's never anything wrong with what they're doing, people just gang up on them: But ask yourself why people use the term anti-Semite when referring to Jewish people. The Jews are the smallest group of Semitic people, but why do they get to be the Semites? If the Jews are the Semites what does that make all the other Semites? Semimites? semites?
I think that last sentence kind of highlights a lot of their problems throughout history. This habit of not only excluding majorities, but excluding anyone isn't going to play well with any audience and they've been doing it since before Joseph got his ass kicked for dressing like a fairy. Thousands and thousands and thousands of years. That's a long fucking time to be lording (ha!) your 'God given' backstage pass over everybody else.
It's pretty easy to see why some liberal union worker coming along and calling shenanigans would piss people off. It's like replacing Jacob's Ladder with Jacob's Elevator and not even checking ID at the door. Everybody gets to come and there's no 'Park Pass' to get you in first? Fuck that. Nail that guy to a tree and let's go do wine cask stands before sundown.
Come on! They me be 'God's chosen people', but this is round 2. Remember, their God already cast them out and only took them back after many beards had been pulled and many robes rent and they stopped being dicks. They also forever lost their original 'above all' status for all time. Never again could any of the children of Israel claim to be above even the lowest Gentile. It's all there, in the Bible, Torah and reams of extremely boring Torah supporting documents.
Remember, this is the same people who could only find one solitary Samaritan who wasn't a complete cocksucker? Even through the Samaritans were one of their largest trading partners, when they weren't warring, there was only one lone guy who would help another Human out? That's simply not reasonable.
I give zero fucks about any 'group' of people. I'll assess individuals on their own merits (even help a wounded Jew on the road :) and it really isn't fair the Jews catch so much shit, but if the Jewish People, as a whole, were on my staff I would suggest they listen to their god and turn down the arrogance and superiority. Sometimes it's necessary to remind people of their place, Heads of State, children and staff all need to be occasionally reminded not to be dicks, but if you do it all the time you've become a dick yourself.
It's good that the town is named this way, and it's good that somebody got around to deciding it might be offensive. But they're so late with the change it's kind of offensive to change it now. I'm getting hints of misguided tourism efforts. It's surely not the case than people just woke up and decided to change the name of the village they've always lived in.
If nothing else, the fact such a place exists is kind of a good reminder that things have gotten out of hand in the past and can do so again. I'm not one to advocate for showing grammar school kids Holocaust photos, but little cultural oddities like this are what tie the events of tomorrow to the events of the past. It's important. Besides, things like this help prevent the revisionist histories so popular on the West.
Re: "Not exactly attractive to the Israeli tourist demographic"
You're correct. Again, ignorance causes as much, of more, heartache and destruction than unabashed greed or true hatred. The argument that stopped me from hoping for an improvement was about Israelis and Jews. This girl was furious that I had made some clever remark about Jesus being a Jew and she screamed at me that Jesus was an Israeli, most certainly not a Jew. Jews killed Jesus... I also learned that Semites are all Jews and that the Three Kings (Wise Men to her) found Baby Jesus by following the brightest star in the sky, the North Star.
I knew then that the oldest versions of the Pandora's Box story were correct and Hope was indeed an evil that was trapped in the box with all the other bad stuff.
Blaming death and destruction on religion is like blaming poor people for your not being rich, government for stifling business or Jews for the plague. It's Humans who are the problem.
The moment you say it's 'religion' you're giving credence to the idea that a supernatural being is in fact taking away the free will of the Humans every God is supposed to have given free will to. That's what religion is you know, or at least a HUGE component of them all. It's a god giving Humans free will and 'testing' them by seeing how well they can manage having the ability to reason and plan instead of acting instinctively.
You'd know that if you actually participated in or studied any religion before embarrassing yourself by popping off with shit you are obviously completely unknowledgeable about. Blaming anything other than people for any act perpetrated by people is cowardly at best and dangerously stupid at worst.
Regardless of how a person 'believes' about religion not a single one of them supports the idea that Humans aren't responsible for their own actions. So much so that they all have special penalties for acting 'against Man' and using their god to hide behind. The same people that commit atrocities in the name of god are nothing more than the 'other team' of ignorant asshats no different than someone blaming religion for the actions of others. It's pure fucking premeditated ignorance, and that's the problem.
Ignorance. Willful premeditated ignorance and acting on it with absolutely no fucking idea what they're/you're talking about. So thanks, jackass. Thanks for adding your own special brand of uselessness to the world. Your mindset of emotionally driven intellectual vapidity is absolutely no different than the people killing innocents in the name of god. I suggest you consider that over the weekend. Who do you want to be? Right now you're in the same camp as the people celebrating successful necromancy and the domination of Earth by an undead Semitic tradesmen by ritually hiding chocolate in brightly colored plastic eggs and cannibalism and ghost worship; horribly misguided and totally out of your depth.
Re: Marrissa has worked pretty hard
Have you ever written a check for several hundred million dollars? It ain't exactly hard. It's usually made even more luxurious by the fact that people always give you really expensive pens and booze when you're signing a big check. If I know what sort of pen it's going to be I like to deduct that amount from the check. Nobody knows what to do and you get free $6,000+ pens. It's great fun.
But to the main point, Yahoo! had been fucked for ages when the employees weren't contributing anything of value from the comforts of their tax deductible home offices, why does it matter where someone does nothing useful from? If coming into the office and getting pressured to perform to help save the ship they helped, nearly, scuttle is too much to deal with then either cut them back to intern wages or fire them. Dead weight becomes increasingly heavy as the vessel takes on more water you know.
Before you get all huffy, I was at an investment meeting where she was talking about the decision to do away with most telecommuting. Want to take a guess at internal vs home assignment completion disparity? Across the company it averaged out to 11 hours for home workers and four (4) with home workers doing the exact same assignment. Just think, she could have just shitcanned nearly 2/3 of the workforce and, were she an accountant probably would have, and reduced productivity by less than zero. Crazy right. People wanted to be paid to masturbate at home but be paid the same as someone who bathed and came to work and contributed almost 3x more.
But wait, there's more! In a truly classy move they fired a developer who had written a software tool that was gaming their activity management system but didn't press charges for conspiracy to defraud (he had hired other internal developers to help), fraud or theft. That was nice, especially seeing as how he was charging other staff for the software. As part of the not going to prison part of the deal he provided a list of everyone who had bought the software and other than a stern dressing down they got in zero trouble. None. Not even an addendum to their employment record.
Furthermore, she turned the whole thing around on the Board and made them responsible for fostering an environment of theft and fraud by being slackasses. That's just fucking classy. If she manages to save Yahoo! that's the end of tech telecommuting for everybody. It's never delivered as promised.
She may have a lot left to do, and I'm still not sold she can do it, which is why I vetoed financial involvement with them, but she has earned the chance to prove herself just because of her deft handling of the fraudulent staff. Find another issue to dislike if you want, but I can guarantee if you were responsible for those people's jobs you wouldn't tolerate excessive jacking off on company time either.
Re: The reason is simple enough
Yahoo! is an excellent modern example of lessons in tiger hunting. Other than taste, there's no difference between a tiger and a market and if you capture one you better made damn sure you've already got a plan for what you're going to do with it. What you decide is an entirely different matter, but you'd better eat it, sell it, breed it or weaponize it or it will destroy you. You can't just keep poking at it and expect anything good to happen.
Throwing money at acquisitions, and hopefully growth, is not only fine, it's desirable. Running a company based on cutting expenses is what makes it so cheap for me to buy failed businesses and part them out. But there's no point if there's still no plan for the tiger. All you've done is polish the stick you're poking it with and sooner or later that motherfucker is going to tear your face off and kill you so hard your relatives will die too.
They've still got an enormously huge loyal user base (for some reason so does AOL, they're Google's 6th largest advertising partner) and maybe that's good enough for them. But I wouldn't stand for it if it was one of our portfolio investments. They've got everything except a plan for the tiger and I would replace the leadership every 180 days until somebody got that part figured. Changing internal rules and spending money isn't hard and requires no special skills. In fact, spending huge sums of money is even easier than spending middling amounts, because you never have to spend huge sums of your own money, it's always someone else's.
I think her lack of tiger hunting success (it's not a success of it kills you, that's backwards) is probably tied to her personal PR campaign and obviously self serving nickname. She should revel in being 'Goo Girl' instead of an obviously false 'golden girl'.
Re: Dark art of Accountancy?
I have despised corporate accountants since I first began dealing with them. I'm no slouch with mathematics, in fact I'm pretty damn good with numbers, and the only group of people on Earth who will take two positive numbers and end up with a negative sum several times larger than it would be if math actually worked backwards. It's a good thing I didn't use that kind of math when I designed the machine that (possibly) wound the wheels on the train you ride to work.
I understand what they're doing, and why, and why it isn't wrong. But it's still wrong. It's like x-raying an x-ray and claiming you can now see through lead, it doesn't work that way. Although I'm always very pleased with the work my accountants do, I still don't like them because they can't/won't see the problem with being in a math driven profession and ignoring math :)
You and your wife should figure out something artsy with the dead cards. Like glue them over the faces of male porn stars in pictures so that all you can see is a big cock. Call the pieces something like 'Stolen Innocence in Aisle 5' and do a series of them!
Re: How odd
You could probably make a fortune if you founded a marketing company based on your, quite astute, observation. 'Concerned about identity theft? Shop Smart, Shop Safely and Shop Securely. Shop Online'.
Re: They should offer money.
You can save yourself a lot of emotional distress and instead of writing a letter that'll never get reds just use the proven Don Jefe Gift of Strife System.
Find the name of a woman employee (must be a woman) of your target company and start sending her gifts with the CEO's initials on the card. Nothing extravagant, but something noticeable. The magic is in the card. Put some very simple, ominous, but not openly threatening, and completely incongruos with the gift, message on the cards.
I find one or two word messages are the best. Things like 'soon', 'tonight', 'Tuesday' (hint; if you go with the day of the week you've always got to use the same day, but never send a gift on whatever day you choose).
For gifts I like flowers, carnivorous potted plants, fruit baskets, one of those balloons with an anatomically correct baby doll dressed in designer baby clothes inside instead of a stuffed bear, a stuffed bear (real bear, preferably dead, or heavily sedated) or one of those nice wicker picnic baskets with a mystery bottle inside it. You can buy Human and animal teeth on etsy and they make a cool sound in a glass bottle.
I like to order the gifts from an airport, strip club or bar in a terrible part of town. That way when the lady finally sues the CEO it will come out in court, or settlement talks, that the CEO is up to some shady shit anyway and the lady will get more money after the dust settles.
Anyway, if letters are your thing that's cool. But most company leaders have a SpamDroid that reads all the incoming letters and gets rid of any that don't have nudie pics of a pretty lady, drugs or cash enclosed so it'll probably never get read by your target. But for about 25% of the cost of a lawsuit you can cook up a batch of Discord by Courier and send one gift a month for 7-8 months. It's much more fun, as you get to at least imagine something entertaining is happening instead of knowing your missive is now bedding material in the enclosure of someone's pet stoat.
Have you ever been in a Michael's? There are more people in your closest McDonalds at any given moment than inside an entire Michael's all day. It's absolutely impossible that a 'sizable percentage of credit cards in the US' were lost by Michael's.
If my abnormally great estimation skills aren't enough, I have more observational data to back my case. I go into Michael's a few times a month to get stuff for Wife and I am, without a doubt, the only Human with a penis who is over the age of nine in there. Ever. If I was remotely self conscious I would feel extra pervy, but I'm not. I tell wife all the time if she dies before me I'm going to troll for women at Michael's in her honor. Like I used to tell Jefe v2 when I made him go to ballroom dancing classes he would appreciate it one day. I was right.
At any rate, I didn't say nothing needed to be done. I said letting the government get into implementation details is suicidal because all they do is fuck it up when they get down to that level. I know at least six agencies who would be involved, and that's not even thinking about it hard. Hence my earlier example.
They can, occasionally, do high level law making without disastrous, something like the FDIC for example. There are broad rules, and penalties, and if you break those rules you are penalized. You put the onus for compliance on the merchant, not the clowns here in DC.
You never, ever want government to mandate technical details. That's how it's possible that I own a fully functional .50 BMG mobile antiaircraft emplacement and have a complete set of 12 matching
dueling pistols negotiating aids displayed in my office but have to file a permit to shoot whistle pigs with a sporting rifle, but not an antique antiaircraft. I have mail my man portable weapons to the gun dealer near my fortress of solitude, but I can run around the Beltway and down I-81 with a small cannon capable of destroying any traffic snarls that impede my progress.
But that never happens because even though my big truck is a commercial vehicle that weighs 19,500 pounds, has solid rubber tires and gets about 4MPG (Highway) it's registered as a private vehicle and as long as the
weapon crew wife or any other individual is riding with me I get to drive in the HOV lanes which usually don't get stopped up too bad. Because the trailer for the .50 has four axles I have to file a permit and get pilot vehicles to escort me on the road to my fortress the that cuts across a corner of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. But the costs of that are offset because the Tennessee Department of Transportation inspects the small bridges outside the park for free before I cross them as long as I give them 10 days lead time. It's a private, street legal, vehicle you see.
It's cool when I get to my fortress it's cool because through wonderful land trust property tax incentives in Tennessee and the North Carolina part of the property combined with state and Federal sustainable energy tax incentives I made $1,131 in 2013 because of the micro hydroelectric turbines and solar panels I had installed and the fact the tax breaks on the 2,100 acre property because of the land trust breaks mean the States pay me a few dollars every year not to build any more than six domestic residences not to exceed a total square footage allotment of 18,000 sq ft in addition to the above ground portion of my fortress. I am allowed to log the property though, but no more than 50 acres per 7 year time frame. But when I legally cut the trees off protected 'Southern Highland preserve' property my for the wood for the new floors in my Virginia home I was able to make $8,000 selling the excess to a sawyer and another $1,800 for replanting new trees and the labor was provided free by the Department of Agriculture Internship program.
None of it makes a lick of fucking sense, and that's what you're always going to get if a government is getting into details. You'll have 70 agencies all coming up with their own rules and if you're savvy you'll be able to at least make drinking money by playing them against each other by complying completely with their contradictory rules. 'Michael's today announced that they had suffered a breach of security and early reports indicate that the problem was solved after they were able to confirm that at least 11 and no more than 17 3/5 Native Americans had been victimized. This gives Michael's immunity from prosecution thanks to their being awarded 'Protector of Indian Heritage' by the Bureau of Indian Affairs for their heroic actions in stopping the targeted attacks on the Native Americans before damage was too great. We certainly don't want to repeat the sins of our fathers against the remainder of those most noble people's. Stay tuned for the televised coverage of the extraction of a 10 ton armored vehicle towing an antiaircraft cannon that fell into a ravine after a small bridge in Eastern Tennessee collapsed. The National Guard has dispatched specialized equipment to assist and it appears that TNDOT is accepting responsibility for the estimated $7,000,000 operation'. Now, here's Tom with the weather.
It's not that I disagree with you, something needs to be done. But I'm kind of leaning towards an FDIC style arrangement where rules are straightforward (bank robbed or collapses, no worries, it's covered by payments to the FDIC) and they don't fuck around. Being a slacker with normal people's money? Ok. You're no longer a bank. Stuff like that is about as far as I want the government into details. Otherwise they'll fuck it up royally.
Re: They should offer money.
The smart money seems to be investing in credit monitoring services doesn't it. I've never looked at the economics of the thing, but I wonder if card processors could offer the monitoring service to the stores bundled with everything else. I suspect it would be cheaper, kind of like insurance, and not doing business with a processor that offered it by default would just look like greed driven negligence by the merchant so it becomes a PR requirement.
Re: Strong winds
To you it's a dust storm, to Sandy Clean Rover Maintenance it is a key component in their business plan that's centered around utilizing the natural weather patterns of their planet for fun and profit.
Re: @Matt, Good Point
You make a very valid point. There are more than a few companies that are just atrociously managed, and they don't seem to care.
If we disregard individual company product bias and just look at the way companies are run I think there's a significant difference between a Google, Microsoft, Dell or Oracle and those poorly run companies. It's that their founders are still involved with their companies and are responsible and interested in how they are run.
Obviously MS has changed a lot as Bill Gates has distanced himself, but he's still involved and certainly hasn't disappeared into the jungle to polish his qi (or whatever people do with those). Michael Dell was so dissatisfied with how his former baby was being run he did leave the jungle and get back into a horrible lifestyle that only the ultra wealthy find unsatisfying. Larry Page showed a lot of wisdom bringing in Eric Schmidt to make him even wealthier but he wasn't satisfied partying the world in a private jumbo jet and came back to work. Larry Ellison has more access to his wealth than anybody except a few Arabs and less overhead than any of the rich people (really, you wouldn't think it, but they all have bigger bills, more debt and less liquid cash) and I'm pretty sure that guy is just too damn mean to die as long as he stays at Oracle.
The mobile companies never really had any of that. It's been fuck it and let's go golfing because, as you say, they didn't care. But they aren't ultra wealthy, just very wealthy, and as far as I know all the managment has always been comprised of professional managers who simply don't have the wherewithal to be part of that 'special' class of loon that sees money as an end in itself and not a means to get hookers and cocaine delivered to them by blimp courier.
You may be right, and time will certainly tell, but as a rule, explosive spending at these proportions is almost always done on the back of big outside investment or IPO. It's extremely rare to see it coming from company money.
Google didn't invent online advertising you know. Adwords is a fairly terrible platform and is best suited to tiny shops. I'll never understand why El Reg uses it as there are most certainly plenty of options out there.
Regardless, everybody pays some extra for things they'll never own or even know exist. That's what currency is really for & why it's most difficult to trade previous metals, gemstones and livestock for houses and whores anymore.
If you own anything containing titanium, any footwear with Vibram soles, have a saddle with interchangeable composite gussets, own a precision target rifle manufactured after 2004, ride or live in a country that used trains with wire wheels, have anything containing materials developed with research done with particle accelerators (the safety glass in your car, CD's, some labware and drinking vessels), some brands of submersible camera enclosures, seat belts, eat honey or products containing honey, enjoy those chocolate candies with unique melting properties that have an upside down 'W' on them, or own a building with a blast door, or scads of other common stuff you're paying a little premium to me to cover the costs of the equipment I've built for those companies or the companies who provide things to those companies. Neat huh?
I created a name for these systems, but apparently some asshole named 'History of Civilization' already had 'economy' registered. Fucking USPTO right? Those guys are just so unorganized. Maybe I should just refile. It's a lot easier to do that these days you know. I pay a small fee to connect a phone designed and made with parts made by employees in dozens of countries to access a network run on equipment made by lots of different people that's used by software created by lots of other people to fine a trademark application that's dealt with by an entire agency made up of equipment and people. My first patents and trademarks had to be done with actual paper! The supply/process chain was a bit different, the paper was made in this country, but that's about all.
I had no idea all those people went to work everyday, for free. But now that you've clued me in I know I don't have to pay for anything because those people are all so generous they'll work for free, just out of the kindness of their hearts. I bet they're all Canadian. That's just a nice lot, those Canadians.
Ultra wealthy and 'don't care about money' can't coexist in a single entity. It's a personality trait, or depending on who you ask, a psychological disorder. They can't stop it anymore than severe alcoholics, sex 'addicts', gamblers or serial killers can stop.
People with those traits all talk about it too. How after a certain point there is no joy, or purpose, in what they it's just what they do. Their 'thing' now owns them instead of the other way around, and it's weird and sometimes quite sad.
The guy who founded the VC group I'm with has been in the top 100 money lists since the early 90's. He started out wanting to get rich so he could have yachts, jets and castles, and he got them all. But he's spent less than two weeks on his yacht in the 15 years he's owned it and he owns a pre revolution chateau in France that he's only visited once. It's great work if you're staff who live on the boat or the chateau or buy the rare things he fills them up with and it's exactly what he always wanted. Unfortunately he feels he doesn't have time to enjoy them because there are always opportunities to make more money.
He's no different than other extremely wealthy people. They all do that and you'll never meet one who will say 'it's only money' or 'it's OK if we're not making more'. The ability to be satisfied with a few millions, or even $100 million, doesn't exist in them anymore than my ability to leave an open, but not empty bottle of bourbon sitting around.
People forget that determining what is and isn't admissible in a case is the biggest part of a judges job (in the US anyway). Even really simple things can be excluded, or included, at the judges sold discretion. What's usually seen as 'process' in court, say all the evidence presented against someone in a straightforward DUI case is actually nothing more than a streamlined way of saying if prosecutors provide A, B & C then judge can just skip over details if the defendant doesn't want to give them and pass out (ha!) their judgement.
But the judge can ignore, or weight, those streamlined pieces of evidence if they feel it's the appropriate thing to do. They're rarely going to do that for something like a DUI, that's so obviously illegal.
But for 'moral' judgements and such they can and most certainly do get into the details and that's generally why not simple court cases typically take epically long periods of time to resolve. What is supposed to be about a defendant becomes about two legal teams battling each other and presenting evidence as to why their evidence should be included or the evidence of the opposing lawyers excluded.
Moral issues are also the judges discretion and all US law, like law in all EU countries, recognizes 'moral imperative' which is a good thing. It's what allows a woman held prisoner in a basement to kill her captor if the situation presents itself and not be charged with taking a life by lying in wait (premeditated murder/manslaughter by ambush) which is worse than just regular premeditated killing. That's an extreme example, but 'digital law' (yes or no) isn't practiced in any civilized country. There's a grey area that's a really big part of the Human condition and any system which claims to carry the banner of justice is incapable of doing so if that grey area isn't recognized.
Unfortunately, like so much of our legal system, good ideas have been gamed by bad people and it has made a mess of everything. There should have been a 'don't be a dick' amendment to the Constitution.
The problem here isn't a 'no poaching' understanding, I don't know anywhere that doesn't go on once you start talking about key personnel and senior management. The problem is the fact these clowns didn't know enough basic etiquette to know you don't need an agreement not to do that. Just like you know you can't have sex with other people's spouses, or kill them, if everybody doesn't agree to honor social etiquette (you can I suppose, but that's another issue).
I think about 95% of the problems in tech are related to the fact that classless misanthropes were kept in their basements and not allowed to reach positions of wealth and power and now that's no longer the case. Bunch of clowns weren't being 'bullied' throughout history, they were pushed out because they've got no sense of propriety, manners or honor.
A raging asshole with a sense of proper behavior is always preferable to a jackass who thinks social and professional etiquette aren't important.
I am overawed by the advanced technologies of your planet.
(respectful period of overawe passes, regular awe resumes)
As you may have read on this site, I'm with a VC group in Washington, DC and I give 50% of my annual profits from that group to various academic research projects and a number of very specific scholarships. One of those scholarships and one of the ongoing projects I fund completely are in the field of predictive analysis for precision machine control, which is obviously a software intensive field (the scholarship is for Computer Science)
The aim is to not only improve existing simulations for CNC driven machining processes, but also to eliminate the need for some 'next step' programming so the software can automatically generate the machine code for the next operation based on data from earlier and later operations that have already been developed by various project team members.
It's very complex stuff. Highly experimental at this stage but is still so large that things get 'lost' in the code and errors popup from years earlier to bite the researchers in the ass. But with your advanced technology I can completely eliminate the Humans this planet uses to develop software! No longer will our computers be slaves to meat sacks and will be able to express their perfection as only software written by non-Humans can do!
I'm not exactly hard to find, even easier with the other advanced technology you must possess I'm sure. I have resources and would like to meet with you to discuss a partnership of some sort. If you're nervous about your spaceship being seen you can land at my Northern Virginia facility under cover of darkness. There's a small, partially improved airstrip on the backside of 600 acres I use for towing my glider or I can send our plane for you as long as it doesn't have enter orbit or hover to receive you.
Don't fret about your appearance. I'm completely species agnostic as are my staff. We'll move underground for about half of the journey back to my facility so the contract security won't see you. I've had US Presidents and a couple of other heads of State and a variety of well known people so everyone here is accustomed to dealing with guests who prefer to keep their comings and goings private. I look forward to meeting with you and please feel free to contact my protocol droid directly if you have special requirements. I don't allow Humans to be killed or eaten here though. Our National Zoo and exotic food farm have a new Great Panda though and if you've never eaten that I can arrange for it and you can dispatch it as your race prefers or allow my chef to prepare it to your liking or to his taste. Let me know and I'm really excited!
Re: A year?
Why is that hard for you to believe? Credit card companies, banks, most everything suffers the same flaw: Humans work at those places. You're probably right, somebody would have noticed, but there's a staggering amount of truth to all those squeaky wheel clichés. People are, in general, are simply terrible at continuos assessments. Nobody does anything until something catches fire. Alternatively, they become transfixed with 'regular' inspection and maintenance routines and never look beyond what their DIY checklist tells them.
Besides, the FBI probably put the vulnerability in there themselves. They just didn't bother to tell anyone until they were done with it and no longer felt it necessary to hide it.
Re: I wonder how much it costs to make one of these
I think the whole concept of the tech is a solution looking for a problem. But that's true of tons of tech, so no big deal I suppose.
But as far as paying to get to develop for it, Google can't even cover the costs of the retail packaging if that 10k estimate from El Reg is remotely accurate, there's no money there.
In other industries everybody pays for 'lab' or 'experiment' kits and the idea is two fold:
- Of course there's a bit if lock-in at play if the $15k kit is a big outlay for you
- The actual model is designed to pay the staffing costs of the R&D teams that put the kits together and come up with the 'starter recipies' outlined in the kits.
I suspect Google is in the second camp. Nearly 12% of all my internal R&D is offset by the sales of experiment kits we put together for people considering investing in our Ti casting process. It's mostly shitloads of data, some extremely complex software that's really easy to use, and gas samples so they can see if things in their facilities are going to be damaged or destroyed if exposed to the gasses in the process.
It's small expense that covers a big hunk of an enormous cost center. Pretty much every material provider and machine and tooling manufacturer does the same thing and it's wonderful for everybody involved. We've got a very advanced facility and there's little that's going to slip by us, but spending $20k or whatever for tiny samples has enabled us to verify our assumptions and more than once enough concern was generated to warrant ejecting another path. It's no different with Google. People can decide if they want to invest serious money in software development for no risk ($1.5k, but if that's a roadblock you've got bigger problems to deal with).
It's smart for everyone. But isn't a profit generator. It's more of a loss mitigation tactic.
Re: @ Don Jefe
It's nice to know you don't understand your own point. That must make life fun for you. You said that machines were responsible for reducing employment in the British manufacturing sector. That's correct, but not complete.
Because Britain isn't producing many complex things they can get by with simple machines that require fewer operators. Complex output and the advanced machines need to make those things have significant operator requirements and if complex production goes up, then so does employment. The simple circuit boards and low precision parts coming out if Britain don't need much to operate. Obviously an advanced high volume machine will need fewer operators, but a big pick and place machine can use 15-18 people, per machine, per shift, just to keep it fed. That's quite a bit more than the single operator making simple boards. I won't even bother with precision machining, there isn't any there.
Thatcher didn't ruin anything. The idiots that put her in power and waved her banner did that. Hell, they're still doing it and I'm pretty sure some of them have even figured out how to use the government subsidized Internet to be 'virtual idiots'. Thatcher was far too stupid to ruin anything but your dinner and her marriage bed. I met her twice. The first time I went to England to present a paper and the second time about six years later.
The paper was on research I had done with Titanium alloys in He cooling systems. Afterward she asked some prepared questions and I'm still 100% certain that dumb bitch had no idea what my paper was about or what the markings on her note cards meant. I was told it was an honor, I was afraid I had been brain damaged and my position at ORNL would be jeapordized as a result. I was able to restore full functionality after cleaning my brain and soul with copious amounts of bourbon.
The second time was at a dinner and her protocol droids had obviously informed her we had met in the past. I denied ever meeting her and her look of panicked confusion, then the look of anger forged in the hottest fires of stupid from being embarrassed that caused her toady to turn pale will always be one of my fondest memories. Oh for a picture.
So no, I blame that dumb slag for nothing. She couldn't have done anything positive, or negative, that a cucumber couldn't do.
My point about France, Japan and Gernany was that I've got several million dollars in equipment from companies in each of those countries but none from Britain. It isn't cost or bias that's kept me from buying equipment from there. Hell, I'm certain it would be priced better because I can get manufacturing equipment from Britain through reduced duty ITA programs, but there's nothing to buy! Britain is consumption only as far as advanced manufacturing equipment, but I've got good trade both ways in France, Germany and Japan but Britain just buys, doesn't produce.
Re: Peak Beard
Bah. A beard is like a machine gun for your face. And although it might look kind of silly, a pink machine gun is no less deadly. It's all a matter of who is using it.
As great as this sort of thing is for trolling, there's a real problem here and nobody ever talks about it. You can't manufacture successful industry. This isn't a stadium, just because you build it doesn't mean anybody will come.
You don't put signs up and declare that business will grow here, because that kills 100% of the market pressures that businesses overcome in 'innovative' ways that results in a desirable place to set up shop. I don't want legal, marketing, IT, engineering or suppliers to setup where I will come to them, I want them to setup where they've identified a market opportunity and will fill it with things that market needs. Otherwise you and up with people trying to sell everything and besides never getting it right, their staff and inventory overhead makes their products unaffordable because you're paying for things that never get sold, and they've got to cover those losses somehow.
Successful R&D is never of planting of seeds then harvesting the results. Successful R&D is a function of problem solving and you're never going to attract problem solvers if you try to solve their problems for them. That's what aerospace companies do and they're 100% dependent on government for their success. If you want government subsidized innovation you're not only mad, you're fucked.
Silicon Valley came into existence organically as like minded problem solvers all began to gather around a few innovators. If you don't let that happen everything falls apart. You don't play catchup with another county because you want some of that money too. That's not innovation, that's follow the leader. You foster whatever you've got, not try to be like somebody else. It's like people who buy Chrysler 300's because they think they look like a Phantom, but the illusion falls apart when an actual Phantom rolls up. Innovation doesn't start by doing what somebody else is doing. That's just stupid.
Re: Three cheers for the EU
There's a great response! Love it!
You've also identified a great new market: Civil Protest Technology. It's an entire sector gagging for attention. Protest organization tools, quick drop riot supplies, you could even do solar powered 3D printers designed to output anti-police barriers custom fit to alleyways and doors! Lots of options.
You could even do something like iMercenary where you can order protestors preprogrammed with a specific cause in mind!
Re: Strange choice of graph type
Ah ha! A teacher! It genuinely makes me happy there's at least one educator who hangs out here. I think teachers are the most valuable people in society but so many of them become locked in stasis when they start teaching and never bother to keep abreast of current commercial developments. Hats off to you sir.
I agree the graph is stupid, but is it truly the incorrect format? I ask because I'm a big believer that graphs aren't for displaying data, that's what spreadsheets are for. Graphs are for displaying data to sell something with.
Not necessarily 'sell' like a financial transaction, but to sell people on an idea usually related to what's in the chart, but isn't actually on the chart itself. So you use a chart that blows all sense of actual proportion away and let's you position things in a way that furthers your cause.
You're partially correct, but too far off to the side and you're conflating two different issues. British manufacturing has been increasing because they're producing things that are simple to produce and have skinny margins that can't compensate for being made elsewhere. So while there are most certainly lots of people who aren't needed to produce things, it isn't the efficiencies of production that's responsible, it's the fact very little of complexity is produced there anymore.
The few complex things that are produced there use US made equipment to produce and have US engineers doing the R&D. I've got three people in England right now on a BAE project, one of which is leading the project and the other two will come back in a few months to oversee the design and construction of the equipment that will be built here, and sent to Britain in about two years when it's completed.
But there's nothing of British design or construction here except a chest of British sockets and wrenches and a few motorcycles I use to practice patience and use of the Force to keep running. There's also an old London phone booth I use as a gun cabinet and four old a English double rifles, but that's it and they're all really old. I've got lots of very expensive, very complex equipment from France, Germany and Japan, but not from England. Why do you think that is?
Re: They Actually Make Things In Germany
You know, the Romans left even longer ago than Thatcher and they still drive much of the lifestyle on your island. Hitter has been gone quite a while, but what he did does affect your daily life. What he did has such a big impact that the 80% of 'the Internet' not only misunderstands what Goodwin was talking about, more than a few also believe Godwin a contemporary of Hitler. I made decisions more than 25 years ago that are still providing jobs for people.
It's pretty foolish to believe that because you are young, and 25 years seems like a long time to you, that decisions made two and a half decades ago aren't shaping the works today.
Re: Something is Bad Wrong
You've identified one if the biggest problems with this sort of thing. It's no different than commodities trading in a totally unregulated environment. People whine about regulation but they're always quick to come running for help when they've been ripped off.
As you say, what were people thinking? I want to trade in this highly unstable 'virtual currency', flaunt all the rules there to help prevent stuff like this from happening but when everything goes bad you what to use resources you didn't pay for to pursue somebody you had no business interacting with anyway.
People talk about arrogant and Apple customers, I think BitCoin users have them beaten by a long shot.
Re: 100% of the rights afforded them by law
In US criminal court everybody has the same rights, regardless of where they live. That's why it sucks that 'terrorists' go before a military tribunal, not an actual court. They're already guilty, no marrer what they did, or didn't, actually do. It's the same with everything 'terror related', the entire system gets bypassed.
This guy may, or may not, be a criminal, and it's irrelevant if he doesn't even stand up for himself. He'll have lost that battle if he doesn't show in court and it's 100% certain the Japanese will send him over here. He'll have lost 100% of the protections afforded him by aiding in an inquiry and following through with legal process he set in motion.
See, nobody likes it when a person wants their rights under the law (bankruptcy hearings) but doesn't want the same set of laws applied to themselves. That doesn't stand anywhere outside of Congress or Parliament. He's already getting a major favor because it's an inquiry, not an investigation.
Any statement or evidence he provides in that arrest free setting will be weighed, as he positions it, to make determinations about an investigation. Information provided during that inquiry must also be shared in court, should an investigation result in an arrest. If he doesn't provide it during the inquiry he'll have to defend any accusation made against him regardless of how it is positioned. He'll be defending attacks, not preventing them. He'll have to fight to have every single scrap of evidence for his defense accepted by the court and he simply doesn't have the resources to do that.
It's best for people to understand what's actually going on, instead of yammering on about things they don't know anything about. Armchair lawyers are always insanely deluded about how things work. It's even worse if the subject is something they've never actually been involved with. Go get yourself an inquiry invitation and give your statements in Christchurch, New Zealand. That's what I did when some of our stuff left the UAE and ended up in Iraq. I even got a letter thanking me for my cooperation. It's far less intimidating than court or a grilling by the police.
Re: Whay the need to travel to the USA when ...
You have to be present, in person, at bankruptcy protection hearings if a company you own or represent is seeking to reorganize more than $125,000 (may be higher now) of credit liabilities or personal bankruptcy protection of more than $75k of non-real estate, non-healthcare, non-credit card or debt related to other court ordered actions (child support, alimony, etc...) of debt liabilities. Otherwise you have to be present if court ordered to do so.
He would have to be present anyway, because his debt liabilities exceed the minimums of discretionary creditor protection. Which means the judge is no longer required to take your proposed financial changes into account, at all. They can decide, along with your creditors, who gets paid, how much and in what order and what you get to keep, or don't get to keep. If you don't show and aren't hospitalized or deployed overseas as a government employee you get zero say in your financial future. Regardless, it's common for those living overseas to be ordered to be present to help prevent fraud, and to assess your present state of mind and lifestyle. You fly in from overseas wearing $10k worth of accessories you aren't going to look very good. But people do it... Idiots.
It's also a viable concern if you've filed for bankruptcy, specifically requested your discretionary proposal to be hears, and refuse to show. You're now more in debt and, as in this case, if criminal inquiries are taking place you've just provided 100% of the justification to open a criminal investigation instead of an inquiry.
For the inquiry he could answer questions and provide requested documentation at any US embassy, consulate or military base there by treaty. Anywhere that's recognized by the host country where he can make statements under oath. He can also provide evidence to US officials in any UK, Japanese or Swiss embassy as we have provisions for that via treaty as well. Do you know why we have those provisions? It's specifically for situations like this! A person can have a variety of reasons not to go to a given country, but since they chose to do business here, do not have a right to avoid investigation. Which they can do by cooperating with the inquiry, at a number of places where they won't be arrested or detained. A person can leave an inquiry at any point and still retains 100% of the rights afforded them by law. But if you don't show an actual investigation can be started and the very same embassy that a few hours earlier would have offered you good food and beverages, even fucking cigarettes in a nice room with comfy furniture will now stick you in a cell and give you shitty food, water and no smokes. It's a really stupid fucking thing to walk away from. As I posted earlier, it's illegal to arrest you if you honor a request for an inquiry.
As for the other, I haven't been to Phnom Phen since 2012, but I can't imagine it has changed much. So I can see how you might be overwhelmed by what you see as extravagant expense, especially if you've never been anywhere outside of Southeast Asia. But I can assure you, those guys aren't that expensive. We only send the shitty staff overseas, since it's nearly impossible to fire them. We send them somewhere far from home and pay them pocket change $70k salaries to fuck around and , hopefully, quit.
Something is Bad Wrong
Tibanne Co. Ltd is a limited liability company, with very limited assets, so I'm not sure why he even wants bankruptcy protection. His personal liability is less than $500k and even if it's proven, without a doubt, that extraterrestrials took the Bitcoins he'll never be allowed to work with anything of value in the US or Japan. Ineptitude isn't a crime, but both the US and Japan can limit interstate, interprovincial and international trades of anything if it can be shown that anyone involved in gross ineptitude attempts to become involved in another situation where third party value can be lost (again). So he can't salvage his reputation.
He can't salvage his company. Ever. If he had $1B in the bank, that could be shown to be completely unrelated to and existed in his possession before his involvement with MtGOX, he couldn't borrow the money to cover the taxes on any property he owns, even against that $1B. So he can't salvage any real property he owns in the IS. Ever.
But since he's filed for bankruptcy protection the case must be heard because his US creditors have tied up their creditors funds until the judgement is made. Legally, you can't back out once the motion has be filed because of the 3rd party issue. But he can't even pay the reorg fees because his assets are frozen and, as previously mentioned, he can't borrow one penny.
Why even bother? Why file a motion that requires his appearance in court if he's going to refuse to go? If he doesn't show, in person, no bankruptcy judge on Earth is going to grant his reorganization request, so he's still going to lose everything he already lost, and is going to guarantee an active criminal investigation instead of an inquiry that cannot result in his detainment.
US law enforcement cannot request your presence at an inquiry if they have evidence that warrants arrest. They have to arrest you or wait for you to do more so they can throw more books at you. That's why they don't and big time drug dealers and mob guys to come in for inquiries. That's actually entrapment, where 98% of what people think is entrapment isn't.
A $2,000 a day hobo lawyer knows all this. There's no way a legal team that filed for bankruptcy protection wouldn't have told him. Something is really bad wrong.
Honestly, I thought the guy was either just stupid, of he had been robbed by a State actor to take the wind out of BitCoin's sails. I've always thought that's what I would do if I wanted BitCoin to go away (I'm neutral on the whole idea. I like my regular money). It's just smart. A few assholes had already damaged the BitCoin reputation almost irreparably and the 'common man' always thought it was a scam. Even if the US or Russia or China had gotten caught they could have walked away without much controversy.
But now I'm not sure this guy hasn't ripped everyone off. It's like a guy who has caught a tiger, but didn't think through what happens next. It's just sketchy as shit. He looks more suspicious because everybody that's ever been through corporate bankruptcy or private bankruptcy tied to LLC failures knows this isn't how it is done. He's lost his mind if he doesn't think Japan will export him if he doesn't show for his bankruptcy hearing and a criminal investigation is opened. This is just wrong. If he did it, then sure, that sucks if you bought in, but that's thems the risks. I'm going to be much more irritated if he did do this and didn't think it through any better than this he deserves to go to prison.
Re: They're coming but they're not selling
Value proposition is a term that's totally irrelevant to the general consumer and even more so with consumer tech.
The move of tech marketing in the 1980's away from actual value and into emotion is hugely responsible for the fact that consumers have tech in their homes at all. Konami, Atari and Nintendo pioneered most of the marketing tactics used in tech today. It's just been progressively refined and is now certifiable behavior management science, not just 'fun for two with dual controller ports'.
Hell, until broadband Internet was generally available 80% of people in countries with Internet access never exceeded six (6) hours a week of computer use for an entire family even though they had a computer. The 'value' was having one and the particleboard shrine to display it on.
If people ultimately like these things the value will be the same sort of thing, just owning one is the value. Tablets were around for over a decade before somebody figured out how to capture the emotional sale, now everybody wants one.
Re: And now something like that from a company with long term support
Long term support of consumer electronics isn't very common with much of anyone anymore. It's a seldom discussed stack on effect of the 'economies of scale' everybody like to talk about all the time.
With mass scale production it costs enormous amounts of money to maintain support if a product isn't flying off the shelves. With really slim margin stuff like most mobile anything being 10% under your sales forecasts with half the anticipated warrantable failures can put you 300-400% in the red for that product. If warranty replacements meet or exceed initial forecasts then you can easily move into the 600%+ loss range for that product. If you've sent floor planned inventory to regional distribution centers, or retailers, the losses can climb to levels that are truly phenomenal.
Summarized, losses in mass scale production environments scale 3-5x faster than profits as a result of your 'economies of scale' collapsing and spalling zillions of mini-disasters that crash into your other products. So if a manufacturer maintains support for (Product A) even though sales are poor or, warrantable replacements are not far lower than expected, consumer prices for (Product B) jump way up. If you keep support up for lots of products that aren't doing well the prices for (Product B) can enter the stratosphere.
That's why Samsung dropped support for the 270 Blu-Ray players I bought for donation to a school system after 7 months of them being on the market. Even big margin Apple can't afford to maintain support if products don't sell. For a super low margin manufacturer like Samsung it would destroy the affordability that customers enjoy so much.
It's not that I don't agree with you that it sucks, but the fact companies do that kind of thing is directly responsible for their products being affordable.
Of course Google will sue. Along with a lot of other tiny companies run by lawyers who passed the bar (but should have stayed there :) but were so useless inside corporate law offices that they couldn't draw clients, so they started troll firms to take what they're too stupid to create.
Re: Could not have timed it better
What are you talking about? Other than the Falklands helicopter extravaganza, that also signaled the forever end of British naval power, Britain has an even worse track record than the US as far as military action. So I'm curious, what the fuck are you talking about?
Re: Makes sense
You can't compare US and Soviet economies directly with dollars. Unless you were at the higher end of the 'according to their needs' scale money had very little meaning for the average Russian of the USSR era.
From the 'providing the means to manage a population', which is what economies are, the Soviet nuclear programs were highly successful. The number of people housed, fed and educated as a result of those programs was almost 3x greater than the numbers in the US. Interestingly, the kids in that weird town near Chernobyl tested on par with the Japanese and Germans in math and general sciences. Undergrads here in the US often score lower on the same tests.
I am not saying life was good it Soviet Russia, but I am saying that giving a tiny portion of the population a bunch of money to develop programs that have cost enough to buy the UK but still never recovered the initial investment doesn't seem to have worked as well as giving a bunch more people a much more equalized share. Sure, Chernobyl sucked, and their waste management wasn't great, but Chernobyl was a good lesson for everybody, and the Superfund sites here in the US are cleaned up using technology and processes developed in Soviet Russia.
Everything about nuclear anything is poorly understood by the general public and it's even worse if they start talking nuclear weapons. It's like they learned about it all by watching movies and listening to the news. It isn't exciting reading, but the US and UK both have had their archives open to the public for ages but nobody ever bothers to investigate the facts. It's far more fun to repet things that were wrong in the 1970's and are still wrong today.
Re: Could not have timed it better
It's a real pity some asshole not only put the moon close enough that you can make a very detailed study of its geography with the naked eye, they made it reflective and provided what is, quite possibly, the best side lighting in the solar system. A professional photographer, or rocket scientist, couldn't have designed a more effective system to highlight things you want to knock off the surface using nothing more advanced than 1960's technology :)
Less facetiously, military attacks from the moon were all the rage when Jules Verne was still doing his pioneering work in scientific documentary literature positioned as entertainment and it was still a very real consideration as late as 1981 when the US took the option off the table forever.
Everybody agreed that it was far cheaper to prevent construction and use of a lunar military installation by just bombing the launch facilities of the country trying to build the facility. For all their resilience and strength, launch facilities are extremely fragile when being bombed and man portable weapons can disable launch sites for years. Drone portable weapons even better and you don't even have to get up to do that.
Colonizing the moon is possible, if somewhat pointless, but not a functional military facility with assault capabilities. Satellites with tungsten telephone poles see far more difficult to stop and far, far cheaper.
Re: @Arnaut the less - @Tom Welsh
'The purpose of life is life itself'.
That's so true and so very simple. If people kept that a bit more at the forefront of their thoughts the world would be a much happier place and everybody could have a lot more everything.
Nuclear arms were never a deterrent to national expansionist policies. They were are deterrent to ideological expansion, but not to making a country bigger, or smaller. There are a bunch of policy books that deal specifically with the horribly misguided expansion of nuclear arms in Europe and later to the Indian subcontinent.
Basically, everybody wanted to show they were as robust as the US and the USSR, but never stopped to ask what the goals were. They just knew they needed some nukes too. France, and the UK in particular, were so off the walls desperate to look like lunatics too that Macmillan, Churchhill, and Atlee all said at various times that the dumbest thing the UK had ever done was to keep screwing around with nuclear weapons when the USSR could disappear the entirety of Western Europe in less than an hour and the US was likely to do so accidently in their rush to shoot first.
The reason nuclear weapons were never a deterrent to national expansion is that it's fucking stupid to vaporize and irradiate resources that are the goal of expansion in the first place; it's completely pointless. All the oil in the world isn't worth shit if it kills everyone. Incidentally, that's what scares the shit out of everybody regarding nuclear weapons in the Western Orient (everybody who doesn't live there anyway). It's widely assumed that Israel won't destroy population centers with nuclear weapons, nobody will back that. But vaporizing the oil fields of their enemies would be far more damaging to those countries and the global economy. The more spooky policy types also see the possibility of an enraged 'Islamic madman' destroying their own oil fields if large scale invasion occurred before international nuclear weapons delivery capabilities had been established in that country.
Nuclear weapons should never have expanded outside the US and we should have sunk them all with all the ships and other shit we scuttled after the end of the war. They were never considered a viable response to anything other than a nuclear assault and everybody on the planet who had them was more scared of US (Ha!) than they were of the USSR; even inside the US! Dr. Strangelove was satire with a healthy dose of actual internal concerns at the highest levels of government.
It was fucking stupid, all of it. The 'nuclear diplomacy' a few deluded knobs like to showcase as reasons for keeping the weapons are Bush MkII cowboy bullshit that never actually accomplished anything. The people with power in those situations were the equivalent of patient wives who got the problems all sorted out but never had the heart to tell their 'big strong man' he looked like a horses ass because he'd be impotent and suicidal if his 'weapon of mass destruction' didn't work anymore.
Bunch of dumbassery then and even more so now. You don't shoot nuclear weapons at people who have 41,000 more nuclear weapons than you. Nor do launch nuclear weapons at the land and resources (treasure) you want nor the people who you want to dig it out of the ground for you. It would be like if England had killed everybody in Wales and Ireland then flooded all the coal mines.
Re: About Time @TitterYeNot
Russia might very well bankrupt Ivan 500ml (vodka doesn't come in six packs), but the ruling class won't be effected. They're used to that anyway, plus it's necessary for that to happen if Russia is going to really join the 21st century. Bleeding your citizens dry on projects with little or no actual value is the mark of any modern, leadership class, nation. Hey! Maybe we can do some sort of exchange program! Russia teaches 'The West' how to manage terrorism cheaply and effectively, and we'll show Russia how to avoid its businesses having to pay taxes in foreign countries. It's a win win!
More seriously, 'crazed' investment is how industries and markets are created. Words like 'magnate', 'mogul' and 'robber baron' weren't created as neat new job titles for people doing the same thing as everybody else. Aluminum was a piece of shit, insanely expensive, exotic material until somebody spent several fortunes figuring out how to make it cheap and affordable.
Your Oakley sunglasses and Ping golf clubs wouldn't be made of titanium if not for the investment and years of research I put into reducing production casting costs for the material and some of its alloys so much that I screwed up warehousing markets and purchasing forecasts for every aerospace company on Earth. I saw an opportunity, I met its challenges and now everybody gets to pay extra for using a material that's probably less appropriate for strength and durability in most consumer applications than copper. But hey! Marketing excites emotions and trumps otherwise expressed customer intelligence every single time. It's great too, because all I needed were cheaper parts for accelerator target cooling systems and you get to wear the result on your face and put gas in my cars. Thanks :)
My point, is that the very same greed and desire that's responsible for everything else guarantees that if you build something people can use to make money with they'll do it. It's not an issue of chances or probabilities or even need or common sense, it's as certain as the sunrise or the tides.
If Putin actually 'conquered' the moon then one of only two possibilities will be realized:
- The US and Europe will try to muscle in on the action and establish their own, competing, facilities.
- The US and Europe will create really fucked up global markets that aggressively retard the prices of whatever Russia exports from their lunacy (Ha!).
Either way, something will happen if Putin actually makes good on his promises and the effects will be global. No country, absolutely none, will sit by passively and watch any other country claim dominion over the moon. If you doubt this, simply look up at Antarctica. The Exchequer (the land that will be formerly known as Antarctica in the future) is chock fucking full of treasure greater than all the natural resources Man has used in the history of ever, combined. Stunning amounts of wealth that would enable any dominating nation to control the entirety of Humanity for millennia, but nobody is exploiting Mother Nature's vault, why not?
It's because everybody agrees that nothing but suffering beyond all imagining would result if any country tried to control that place. Check this shit out, even the fucking Nazi's thought the continent was too valuable for any single nation to control. They wanted a share, and if you've not actually been living on the moon since the late 1930's (and failing miserably in taking advantage of the situation :) you're well aware that sharing wasn't exactly high on their list of desirable virtues.
Nations aren't managed successfully by focusing on finances. Again, if you doubt, look at the list of things that the English crown cited as most desirable from its colonies in the New World. You'll find precious metals and such way down the list, pushed down there by the need for trees and ships stores. Can't rule the seas if your Ships of the Line have no masts, leak like Ukrainian whores and have sheets that rot before you make a return passage. But 'sound economic thinking' had seen 'somebody' decide to cut down all their trees previously. Cost them their Kingdom and provided us with a captive island nation to overcharge for consumer electronics and coffee.
You've got to get out in front, not plan from behind or you end up like them and it's entirely possible that other countries will be bankrupted by trying to keep Russia from being on the moon. In actuality, I would say that's far more likely.
Re: Twitter = marketing and PR
Of course it's marketing and PR. Just like 85%, or more, of the entire tech sector is PR & marketing. Computers were around for a long time before Windows you know. Marketing & PR is why you are reading, poorly, and posting on this very site! Neat huh?!?!
Texas Instruments made a big deal out of selling calculators to average people in the '70's and I've still got an internal 'joke' brochure they did up making fun of people for buying more computing power than they would need to managed their lifetime income and budgets. It even talks about how they've saved money by limiting the display size because normal people don't understand numbers that large.
Same with the computer in your house: Marketing success story! That's why tablets have taken off, people don't want to do anything with their tech, they want to consume with their tech and guess how the masses know what they want to consume? That's right! Marketing and PR.
Re: Up the creek without paddle...
@ Steve Crook
Yes. You touched a nerve a bit there. I'm not nearly as big an asshole as some of my labor related posts sometimes make me seem, I promise.
My issue with all this is that, globally, labor (as in work, not political leanings) has become increasingly more of an extremely polarized, them vs us, kind of thing and that's bullshit. It's ineffective at best and costs so much money that it's disgusting. It would be funny if so many people didn't get run over by it all.
You can see it in the comments here and in actions like this in France (Incidentally, the French are, without question, the most technically capable country in Europe. The Germans are a close second, but they tend to be more about scale and efficiency, not absolute best in class. I always look to France first, then Germany and Japan when I'm looking for new staff. So they're not doing everything wrong). You've got employers demanding 'more', far faster than they give to employees, and employees who feel that their only viable response is something equally as drastic, and they're not wrong.
The problem is the situation is a mutual destruction scenario and that's got to be addressed first. Somebody has got to pull back and I put that on the employers 100%. See, when you're in a position of power you aren't 'giving in' when you meet the demands of your subjects. You're demonstrating your strength by showing that what they consider to be great treasure is back of the couch money for you. It also shows you're not scared of empowering them and being overthrown. It's the actions of cowards and great leaking vaginas who can maintain control and realize financial, and influence, expansion only by taking instead of giving.
So the employers have to act like real gentlemen and back down off the worker. If they feel they need more then let's see how smart the employers really are. Use your heads to get 'more', not dishonorable behavior, which is all a rich man asking for something from a poor man is. Dishonorable cowardice, weakness in the face of challenge and I've got no use for such people.
A Man who is willing to do a job, no matter what the job is, should be able to do it and provide for himself and his family while still having a chance to live a decent life, with decent education, health, shelter, food and security and have the opportunity to explore, travel and just be alive without being trampled by a society that's too busy downloading mobile apps to actually enjoy life, as opposed to the moments between work and getting home from work.
Should that man get a Bugatti just for being alive? No. I had to bust my ass for mine, just like I did for everything else I've won. And 'won' is the right word. I've challenged great men and situations and used my abilities, and gained new skills to come out on top enough that I get cool stuff. But that's what it is, stuff. The spoils of honorable conflict and fuck you, those are my right. I am entitled because I won. But that's a choice and while it's nice to think it was 'all me', there was a hell of a lot of luck involved too,
But if you don't want to devote your one life to those sorts of challenges your fate shouldn't be dependent on 'luck' to have a quality life with a reasonable level of love, happiness, freedom and safety. Those mewling little quims who complain about the cost of things like healthcare, education, basic Human fucking dignity have no place in my world. I see absolutely no difference between a person who complains about tax dollars going to care for the stupid, the poor, the unlucky, the old, the black, the Jew, the Irishman, Scot or Muslim than I do in a rapist or murderer. Both are taking and/or preventing someone from having, something special from another Human and I fucking hate them all for it.
I give a lot to charity, but I spend more hunting down and harassing the nasty, greedy bastards who make life miserable for others. I can't kill them, because they couldn't learn better behavior if they're dead. But I can sure as shit make life as miserable for them as they make it for others. Again, it's my treasure, I can use it how I please. I actively encourage others with the means to do so as well.
If one chooses to bust their ass in pursuit of wealth and power, then that's fine, commendable even. But it's wholly unacceptable to make simply being alive and not wanting to kill yourself for a meager existence of strife and poverty a punishment. There's more than enough to go around and if the only way a person thinks they can 'get ahead' or 'get their fair share' then I've got no use for them. Just like I've got no use for those who do pursue a life of wealth but blame others for their own lack of ability if they don't meet their goals or who say they can't make it without guarantees. Them be the risks. Accept them or don't come play near my space and don't dare think about taking from someone who isn't your equal or whining about the price of success, which is benevolent giving to those who don't sign on for a lifetime of conflict.
So yeah, I do feel strongly about the basic rights of Man. This article was also engineered as link bait on a controversial subject to foster the 'user generated content' and I wanted to be generous to the hard working staff at El Reg by engaging in some well engineered trolling to get everybody's hackles up. It would seem I have been successful. I shall now reward 36 hours of grueling, tedious work overseeing the transfer of 19,000 liters of He-3 into our new mirror production facility by consuming 750ml of bourbon. It is 9:40 Sunday morning after all. I don't do Sunday appointments until after 11:00 AM you see :)
Re: Up the creek without paddle...
Until last December I had never heard of Eric Bogle, but I've since devoted vast resources to discovering the source of his power. See, this is no shit, last December Eric Bogle tracks began playing on my Pandora One stations, which hadn't happened previously. It's not that I dislike him, or his music, but I'm 99% certain his music shouldn't be playing on some of those stations, it's just a poor fit.
Shoddy algorithms aren't the problem though. The issue is much deeper, which is why it has captured my curiosity. My wife has a lot of the same stations on her Pandora account, but she uses a free account. She also doesn't get Eric Bogle tracks on her stations. I've verified this for myself.
At first I thought the issue may be related to our individual up/downvoting preferences, but neither of us do that very much, at all. Pandora serves as enjoyable ambiance for us, it's not something we're likely to diddle with much.
Having ruled out some sort of less than perfect automated calculations as well as preferential weighting Occam's Razor dictates I'm left with Eric Bogle being either the shadow force behind Pandora or some manner of Aboriginal spirit disguised as a short, plumpy, bearded Caucasian who roams the Earth seeking retribution for the evils done by the White Devils of the past.
Regardless of my ultimate findings, I don't think I'll expose Eric Bogle as the dark force powering Pandora or disclose that Eric Bogle may be an ancient, dark spirit intent on eliminating the White Man from existence. I will respect Eric Bogle's wishes and keep his malevolent intentions and dark desires a secret, in hopes that he will spare me and my family when he brings Cthulhu once more into the world.
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