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Bush Administration Stops Microsoft Breakup

michael posted more than 12 years ago | from the you-knew-it-was-coming dept.

Microsoft 980

The U.S. Department of Justice announced that it had been instructed by the Bush Administration to cease its drive to break up Microsoft, which has already been found guilty of violating U.S. anti-trust law in a complaint filed by the Federal Government and 19 states. See the BBC or CNN for more. It isn't clear what wristslap, errr, remedy the Justice Department will seek instead. Update: 09/06 15:21 PM GMT by M : Declan McCullagh of Wired notes: "The text of the DOJ announcement is here. Wired News has an article. Also, the DOJ says a 'Senior Antitrust Division Official' will brief reporters at the department's DC headquarters at 11:30 am ET, so look for some followup stories from that."

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motherfucker (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2259235)

i didn't read the article yet, but i bet /. has it interpreted all wrong, like usual.

lost vote (1, Insightful)

malus (6786) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259239)

well, bush just lost my vote.

Bring on Gore.

Re:lost vote (-1)

ascii spork (518057) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259260)

well, bush just lost my vote.

What makes you think voting counts for anything anymore?

Re:lost vote (0)

tom_wilde (263804) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259262)

>well, bush just lost my vote.

and he had it in the first place?!?!?!?

The man is an ignoramus, as decision after decision continues to demonstrate.

Re:lost vote (0)

cyborg_monkey (150790) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259264)

Convicted felons cannot legally vote in your state, remember?

I thought so, cum puppy.

p.s. it rubs the lotion on the skin.

Re:lost vote (1)

3am (314579) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259301)

troll? why?

he's right...

Re:lost vote (1)

JWW (79176) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259303)

This is the only issue I really disagree with Bush on, but its a huge issue for me. Color me pissed off.

If Microsoft were a person treating other people way they treat other companies, they'd have been in jail years ago.

Their practices are so unethical they reek. To bad common people are so clueless about computers they just follow what their pusher (I mean favorite software company does). It's just like people are addicted to their crappy, non-standards copliant software.

Re:lost vote (3, Funny)

AnalogBoy (51094) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259392)

::Looks in crayola box:: I don't have "Pissed Off".. How's about Maroon?

Re:lost vote (3, Funny)

r1ddl3 (211299) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259317)

Don't blame me. My vote didn't count.

This is the real frost piss! (-1)

cyborg_monkey (150790) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259241)

AC's can suck my ass!

Re:This is the real frost piss! (-1)

evil_spork (444038) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259366)

Congrats on the real fp. And of course it will be lost in the flood of idiot Slashbots whining about how the government is letting Microsoft off, which most certainly isn't what this is saying.

YES! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2259242)

Finally justice!

Microsoft US/2010 (2, Funny)

Crusty Oldman (249835) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259245)

... and in a related announcement, spokesmen unveiled an upgraded version of the United States government, to be named "Microsoft US/2010", scheduled for release first quarter '02.

Re:Microsoft US/2010 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2259411)

And in related news, The United States of America will be changing its official name to "The Microsoft States of America (MSA)", but will continue to have its center of government in Washington State.

Re:Microsoft US/2010 (1)

AnalogBoy (51094) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259428)

Well.. even microsoft doesnt produce products with as much bloat as the US Gov't has. I say let them install M.S. Bob Dole [Demopublican Edition] in the white house for a term and see how things work out? :)

Battle stations! (2, Insightful)

sphere (27305) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259255)

OK folks, time to come out swinging. As a tech writer, I hereby swear to do something worthwhile for the Linux Documentation Project by the end of the month.

What are you doing?

Bush (2, Insightful)

Claric (316725) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259256)

It seems that he is above the law.

We could see Microsoft above the law if this goes on.


Bastards (2, Insightful)

waldoj (8229) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259258)

The worst part is that couldn't we all see this coming? Ashcroft was such a weenie during his appointment hearings, especially whenever the topic of Microsoft came up. Microsoft, of course, must have been getting the inside word on this, which explains their incredibly nervy behavior (many aspects of XP, Smart Tags, etc.) in the last few months. This was surely all arranged between Bill and Double-Yah many months ago.

Those bastards!


Many DID see this comming (2, Interesting)

Ratteau (183242) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259356)

The worst part is that couldn't we all see this coming

During the campaign flame-wars here, I dont know how many times I saw people right here on slashdot predicting Bush would stop the breakup. Everyone knows he is deep in the pockets of big oil and industry, did you not think Microsoft would get a piece of that action?

If anything the past couple years have shown, is that we now truely have a government by the corporation, of the corporation, and for the corporation.

Re:Bastards (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2259380)

You know the BBC article says that the decision to pursue a breakup was dropped in order to get an effective punishment against MicroSoft more quickly. Furthermore there is no mention of Bush's personal invovlement at all. Doesn't it seem more likely that the DOJ wanted to punish MS for their violations of the law more quickly and realizing that a breakup would probably take decades in court decided to go with something else that would only take years in court?

Violation of system of checks and balances? (0, Interesting)

erlkonig (15872) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259261)

It seems like Bush, as the head of the
administrative branch, is in no position to
give -any- orders to the judicial branch.

Re:Violation of system of checks and balances? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2259319)

Bush is the ultimate head of the DOJ. He can't give orders to the judges but he can tell the prosecutors not to pursue a particular course of action.

Re:Violation of system of checks and balances? (3, Informative)

bmongar (230600) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259325)

He didn't give an order to the judicial branch, the Department of Justice is under the executive branch. It is a law enforcement body. They are persuing the charges but they aren't a judicial body in charge of the case, That would be the distict court. Bush gave no order to the court (at least not officially)

Re:Violation of system of checks and balances? (1)

RaboKrabekian (461040) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259335)

Bush is invoking executive privledge, which is his right as chief executive.

Re:Violation of system of checks and balances? (2, Flamebait)

Mike Schiraldi (18296) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259349)

It seems like Bush, as the head of the
administrative branch, is in no position to
give -any- orders to the judicial branch.

And you'll notice that no article claims he did. It's just the Slashdot editors abusing their power to stir up resentment and further their political views.

Re:Violation of system of checks and balances? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2259355)

Um, hello? Take a break from trying to get LILO to work and study how our system of government is arranged.

Bush gave no orders to the judicial branch. The Justice Department is part of the /executive branch/. The Justice Department prosecutes. The judicial branch supervises the proceedings, etc.

Re:Violation of system of checks and balances? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2259359)

We like to call that the Executive branch.

Re:Violation of system of checks and balances? (2)

kinkie (15482) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259389)

He who holds the purse is in command.

Let's hope in the EU - which incidentally recently opened up a second investigation against MS for anticompetitive practices.

Re:Violation of system of checks and balances? (1)

barryblack (31922) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259412)

Are you serious? Lets recap:

Legislative- make law
judicial- interperate law
executive- enforce law

The attny general is part of the executive brance. The presedent gets to decide what is enforced afterall.

Re:Violation of system of checks and balances? (5, Insightful)

Foochar (129133) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259420)

Legislative Branch - Makes the Laws = Congress
Executive Branch - Enforces the Laws = President
Judicial Branch - Evaluates the Laws = Judges

The Department of Justice is part of the Executive branch, as well it should be. The executive branch is charged with law enforcement. Bush can't order the judge in the case to rule in a certain way, but he can tell the government lawyers prosocuting the case to proceed the way he wants them to. Checks and balances are still maintained. Even if Bush were to dangle the carrot of a higher position within the courts in front of the judge checks and balances would still be maintained because congress would still have to aprove her for her new position.

Dude, why isn't my Micro$oft stock skyrocketing? (2, Interesting)

ostawookiee (134245) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259265)


Thank God (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2259266)

We don't have to depend on Linux now. Especially considering its outrageous cost ownership - even compared to Microsoft products - as explained below.

Let's have a close look at the costs involved when running a Linux system.

Linux' cost consists not only of the frequent updates, which require new cdrom's to be bought if you don't have a high speed Internet connection.

Another factor in Linux' cost is its maintenance. Linux requires a *lot* of maintenance, work doable only by the relatively few high-paid Linux administrators that put themselves - of course willingly - at a great place in the market. Linux seems to be needing maintenance continuously, to keep it from breaking down.

Add to this the cost of loss of data. Linux' native file system, EXT2FS, is known to lose data like a firehose spouts water when the file system isn't unmounted properly. Other unix file systems are much more tolerant towards unexpected crashes. An example is the FreeBSD file system, which with soft updates enabled, performance-wise blows EXT2FS out of the water, and doesn't have the negative drawback of extreme data loss in case of a system breakdown.

The upcoming 'solution' to this, EXT3FS, is nothing more than an ugly hack to put journaling into the file system. All the drawbacks of the ancient EXT2FS file system remain in EXT3FS, for the sake of 'forward- and backward compatibility'. This is interesting, considering that the DOS heritage in the Windows 9x/ME series was considered a very bad thing by the Linux community, even though it provided what could be called one of the best examples of compatibility, ever. When it's about Linux, compatibility constraints don't seem to be that much of a problem for Linux advocates.

Back to Linux' cost. Factor in also the fact that crashes happen much more often on Linux than on other unices. On other unices, crashes usually are caused by external sources like power outages. Crashes in Linux are a regular thing, and nobody seems to know what causes them, internally. Linux advocates try to hide this fact by denying crashes ever happen. Instead, they have frequent "hardware problems".

The steep learning curve compared to about any other operating system out there is a major factor in Linux' cost. The system is a mix of features from all kinds of unices, but not one of them is implemented right. A Linux user has to live with badly coded tools which have low performance, mangle data seemingly at random and are not in line with their specification. On top of that a lot of them spit out the most childish and unprofessional messages, indicating that they were created by 14-year olds with too much time, no talent and a bad attitude.

I could go on and on and on, but the conclusion is clear. Linux is not an option for any one who seeks a professional OS with high performance, scalability, stability, adherence to standards, etc.

hey, weren't you on the old anti-OS/2 team? (1)

bobalu (1921) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259344)

Yeah, I remember it well - paid MS assasins infiltrating the opposition. But you should really update this text, you keep posting the same one...

Re:hey, weren't you on the old anti-OS/2 team? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2259396)

Sorry dude, no need to get paid. OS/2 as well as Linux suck rocks so hard I do it for free. Hell, I'ld pay to advocate the NON use of crappy wannabee OSen like Linux.

Re:Thank God (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2259425)

Oh, right. That must be why Fortune 500 companies are desperately trying to figure out how to replace Sun systems with Linux systems everywhere they don't need an E10K -- because of Linux's huge cost of ownership.

That's why Cisco rolled their own internal Linux distro and discussed it at LinuxWorld -- because Cisco is famous for throwing money down the toilet on unstable systems and bragging about it to their shareholders.

Blah blah blah. You can only waste so much breath on a troll, I suppose.

Anyway. Tired of M$? Put your money -- or more appropriately, your time -- where your mouth is. Write code. Fix someone else's code. If you can't write code, write documentation. In many ways, Linux is not yet "good enough", especially on the desktop. Don't lose heart; keep working. Make it "good enough." Do your part. There are plenty of you out there. If I'm talking to you, you know it. Get off your ass and get to work.

love, love them do (1)

DonFreenut (130669) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259268)


Message for GWB and Microsoft! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2259415)

Bush puts the lotion on its skin, and does whatever it's told!

Bill rubs the lotion on its skin, or else it gets the Hose again!

Well (1)

Poomah (13361) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259269)

Really, are 2 Microsoft's better than one?

I told everyone (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2259270)

I told everyone not to vote for him, but you didn't listen! Its all your fault! America is run by idiots!

Re:I told everyone (1)

Overd0g (232552) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259290)

Which is OK, as it is populated by idiots as well.

Re:I told everyone (2)

donglekey (124433) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259404)

And because we live in a democracy that means run by idiots. Yes, tis true, America is populated by idiots. The individual is a genius, the mob is one giant Lemming. Shame on us, I feel dirty to be an American, like always.

Re:I told everyone (1)

Fly (18255) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259315)

Um, more than half of us Americans didn't vote for him.

end of line

No one did vote for him (2)

Archfeld (6757) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259405)

and that did not seem to stop him. He's the Supreme Court's President. Hail to GWBush, King of the 87 IQ Club.

well.. (1, Insightful)

Atrophis (103390) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259273)

i know who is not getting a vote in 4 years...

Bush? (3, Informative)

Mike Schiraldi (18296) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259274)

The U.S. Department of Justice announced that it had been instructed by President Bush...

Funny, i don't see any claims that George W. Bush told anyone to do anything.

Typical Slashdot bias.

P.S. Write your state senators and tell them to press on -- the trial can go on without the DOJ.

Read the BBC article (2, Redundant)

T.Hobbes (101603) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259376)

You'll see this: "The US Department of Justice has announced that it will no longer push to have software giant Microsoft broken up.

The decision by the Bush administration reverses the Clinton White House legal strategy against Microsoft. "
Since Bush is (nominally) the head of the Bush administration, it's proper to presume that Bush gave the order. Whether someone advised him on it is another matter, but Bush is the president.

Re:Read the BBC article (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2259431)

So if the DOJ had made this decision a year ago, do you really think Slashdot would have used the headline "Clinton Stops Microsoft Breakup"?

Re:Bush? (2, Informative)

Teancom (13486) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259391)

Where oh where are my mod points?? The only reference to Bush at all is in the BBC blurb (as opposed to an actual story) that says "the Bush administration has decided not to press for a breakup". And yes, the DoJ is part of the Bush administration. At no point does it say that Pres. Bush asked them to, or really anything else at all. Sheesh.....

Old news confirmed... (1)

Cyclops (1852) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259278)

Before he was elected, already Republicans warned that they would do whatever was in their means to make life easier for Microsoft.

Apparently, in lack of other means, they resorted to bullying the DoJ.

Welcome... to the Corporate Democracy. Do you want the blue pill or the red pill?

Hugs, Cyke

new it was coming (1)

teknopurge (199509) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259279)

bush has made it clear that he has the interests of corporations at the forefront of his agenda. I still think he is better then Gore though...

-teknopurge [] help us beta!

Not unique to Bush (2, Flamebait)

Apotsy (84148) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259280)

Before everybody gets all worked up about it, I think it's safe to say that a Democratic president would have done the same thing eventually. In recent years, MS has started contributing heavily to both parties, thus they can get pretty much whatever they want, no matter who is in the White House.

Who said anything about Bush? (3, Redundant)

szomb (318129) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259281)

The CNN story does not mention Bush at all...

What a crock! (1)

grubby (121481) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259282)

There is no way I will vote for bush. I didn't this time and I certainly won't next. The interesting thing is I didn't think all of the people who had the theory that the administration would effect the case were right. I really believed that it wouldn't effect the justice departments case, boy was I wrong!

Can the states attorneys still go for breakup? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2259294)

Since the states attorneys are still parties to this thing, can they continue to ask for the only CORRECT solution, breakup?

Ha ha ha! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2259295)

Eat that anti-MS zealots!

A breakup might have been good, but what are the alternatives? Star Office? Hah. Apple? Linux? BeOS maybe, but none of the others will work for most people, or are to iExpensive.

I thought they needed something approaching a breakup until I saw who agreed with that. Thanks for setting me straight guys!

so predictable (1)

bobalu (1921) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259298)

Actually I believe it was Ashcroft that made the decision. Wouldn't want to stop new bloatware from bringing the PC biz back to life! I can't believe this thing actually takes up 2G.

Anyway, this should be no surprise - if Bush thinks clean air would hurt the economy he certainly wouldn't slap MS, would he?

Obstruction of Justice? (1)

Alfthemack (17146) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259400)

The BBC story said that the Bush administration ceased to seek a breakup.

I don't think the president himself could do it because it would be an obstruction of justice. (waaaaay more so than Clinton lying about sex.)

Previous comments about Ashcroft may prove true since the Attorney General does head the Justice Department.

How is this legal? (1)

T.Hobbes (101603) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259299)

Isn't the matter of punishment before the courts right now? I can see how a president can tell his lieutenents who to prosecute at some level, but this degree of interference? Yech.

Bush - real or... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2259302)

You wonder what happened to all those robotic Microsoft "Barney" toys? They've been rebuilt into the President of the United States.

I'm just waiting for the BSOD. :)

More troubling... (1)

gehrehmee (16338) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259305)

... is that the DOJ is completely dropping any intent to have the "IE-tying" complaint reexamined. (which was one of the most basic elements of the case).
They claim they're making these changes to their stratagy to make sure consumers get a fast and appropriate solution to the problem. BS. Since when did the solution to providing expedient justice under the constitution become dropping old charges and reducing penalties?
Furthermore, why a change in stratagy at all? Microsoft has already been found guilty. It should be clear to anyone paying any attention at all that there's a very distinct motive at work here.

fisrt tr011 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2259316)

I hope the DoJ offers to pay the legal bills of poor old M$ too. Look what all of this has done to their stock prices.

That's My Bush (1)

havardi (122062) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259320)


Those who didn't see that coming... (1)

TroyFoley (238708) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259322)

I want you found, blindfolded and shot.

This was predicted BEFORE the elections... (2, Troll)

tcc (140386) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259327)

I remember when I was reading slashdot before the elections and the microsoft point was brought, everybody seemed to agree that if bush was elected, he would jump in and stop this... so this isn't a surprise...

The sad part is now you can see how the American Gov is above plain basic justice...

Re:This was predicted BEFORE the elections... (1)

JWW (79176) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259413)

No it would have been a suprise when Gore did it. Remember, he visited Redmond during the campaign.

It is not at all unlikely, he would have done this as well.

What a huge surprise... (1, Flamebait)

ackthpt (218170) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259328)

This will do nothing to convince cynics like me that Bush, and his administration, is anything but a puppet to big business. Wasn't it in '89, during his fathers tenure that Microsoft promised to be 'good' and 'place nice'?

I wonder what future president Jenna Bush will do after a prior administration's DoJ finds Microsoft guilty of monopolistic practices for allowing Borg of only their approved series, because the collective is run on their OS

Re:What a huge surprise... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2259377)

note: people that use star trek analogies in discussions of law and technology are often looked upon as infantile imbeciles.

have a nice day.

and I thought MY bank was bad (5, Funny)

ferat (971) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259330)

Certainly took MS's checks long enough to clear...

Bad news for RHAT (2)

Noryungi (70322) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259331)

Oooops !

I am afraid the stock prices of Red Hat and Mandrake are going to hell in a handbasket...

Gosh, this is just bad news.

Wait a minute... (5, Informative)

ASCIIMan (47627) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259334)

Where does this say Bush was the reason for stopping the MS breakup? I see a reference to the Bush administration, but I assume that means someone he appointed (ie John Ashcroft) is the person who "Stop[ped] the Microsoft Breakup".

EU anyone? (2)

Rasvar (35511) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259336)

I think the EU has been sitting on the sideline waiting to see what happens. I wonder if they will get more involved now that DOJ is dropping the ball.

Duh... (2, Troll)

alexjohns (53323) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259338)

Who didn't figure this out the moment we learned Bush was gonna be prez. Duh... Pretty much everyone who voiced opinions on this said he was gonna do it. Republicans like big business. They prefer a hands-off attitude. It's nothing new.

This isn't the company you want. Move along.

Hmmm... (1)

Uberwangen (518634) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259340)

Does this mean now that George W. gets to spend nights at Bill Gates' mansion, and Bill gets to spend nights in the Lincoln Bedroom?

Presidential Payoff (1)

ScumBiker (64143) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259343)

I'm curious, does anyone know how much a US President costs these days? Obviously, M$ can afford it, whatever it is.

I'm simply appalled that M$ will get what appears to be a slap on the wrist and sent home.

How's Bush fit in this? He's not mentioned... (2)

staplin (78853) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259346)

Bush isn't mentioned in either CNN or BBS article... The only explanation I could find is that The decision was made in order to obtain a "prompt, effective and certain relief for consumers", said the DoJ in a statement.

I don't know about you, but this has had exactly the opposite effect on me. Relief? No. Disbelief? Yes.

Bush said so? (3, Redundant)

Lxy (80823) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259350)

I'm no political analyst, but IIRC "Bush Administration" != "George W". And for those of you who are wondering, the BBC article names the Bush administration. There's no mention of it in CNN.

Bush is not wrong here. (2, Insightful)

Captain_Frisk (248297) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259351)

I know this is an unpopular opinion, but I fail to see how breaking Microsoft up helps consumers, or more / less importantly, how it will help our falling economy.

If you split microsoft into Windows / Apps or something like this, then you have 2 monopolies. If you go with a top down split, then you get the same thing that exists with Linux user interfaces, or that still exists with web browsers. You have KDE, GNOME and countless others, making it a bitch for developers, and for users to get used to. In some situations, you really want everything to be the same way.


Bush (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2259352)

The CNN article does not mention Bush. The BBC article only mentions his name in the context of "The decision by the Bush administration reverses the Clinton White House legal strategy against Microsoft."

President Bush did not (necessarily) instruct anyone to do this.

Zach Garner

What do you expect? (1)

plone (140417) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259354)

Well, bush is already in the pocket of Big Oil (and thus the big 3 car manufacturers). Is it no surprise that he was bought out so quickly by the MS lobbyists.

WHAT??? (2, Flamebait)

Telek (410366) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259361)

Jeesus... Just after having a friend finally convince me that breaking them up would be a good idea, they come around and reverse their stance and pull this crap? On what grounds does the Bush administration have to unilaterally push a decision down like this, other than possibly a bucketload of cash?

As much as a MS user I am, I even like Win2K and XP, and their office suite is good, but look at how much consumer benefit came out of having competition with the Intel vs AMD... I doubt we'd be past 1GHz by now if AMD didn't step in.

There is no details as to why this happened, and after finding out about some of their more sleazy business practices, I think it would be a good idea for them to get a good smack upside the head.

Oh well, there goes the market. Lets hope that linux keeps gaining ground like it has, maybe at least that'll force MS to get a bit more competitive. (Hmm, $0 for Linux, or $200 for XP... hmmmmmm)

yay (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2259365)

oooooh man that cock in my mouth tastes soooooooo good...

Who's going to register... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2259370)

Other remedies (1)

selan (234261) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259371)

From the articles, it sounds like the DOJ will go back to the original recommendations for preventing Microsoft from abusing its monopoly power.

Here's the list of possibilities from the CNN article: Among the conduct remedies Judge Jackson originally imposed were: prohibiting Microsoft from punishing hardware and software companies working on competing products; prohibiting it from favoring computer companies and software developers that helped Microsoft exclude competitors; requiring Microsoft to license Windows to PC makers under uniform prices and terms according to a publicly available schedule; and barring Microsoft from interfering with the way PC makers set up startup screens, the Windows desktop, preferences, and Internet connection wizards.

IMHO, these sound like much more practical measures to force Microsoft to allow competition. A Microsoft which competes fairly may actually be better than two Microsoft monopolies.

M$ and Co$ (2)

JWhitlock (201845) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259374)

I know of at least two organizations that have gone up against the U.S. Government, appeared to be clearly in the wrong, but still won.

One is Microsoft, who has done it a couple of times now.

The second is the Church of Scientology, who got the IRS to consider them as a tax-exempt religous organization [] .

All I can say is, look out Heber Jentzsch and David Miscavige, Microsoft is thinking of releasing MS Religion 1.0

Its all part of Curious George's strategery plan. (2, Funny)

Bowie J. Poag (16898) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259381)

If you ask me, George is just plannifying his strategery to get the economical situations back. Bush, like his father, has a keenly awarity of the severeness of the recent economical turning downward.

Part of the economical restimularity proposed by Bush's administration includes a provision for strengtherizing the stock market. The best way to accomplish this, obviously, is to redistributerate the nations wealth resources. This means we don't want to go after Microsoft. Once the stock market begins to redisconfigure its direction and go itself from its turning down of the economy, the economy will be better!

Leave George alone. He's the best thing to come along since Clinton.


Economic Concerns... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2259382)

I think the govt. is afraid this would REALLY tank the economy... (and.. rightfully so)

As it is, things are already sliding into depression despite Greenspan's armwaving.

Rant follows...

The idiocy of thinking that a massive economic bubble would somehow NOT be followed by an equally large bust.... and that you can 'steer' a complex economic system around like a car by simply changing a single interest rate.

Where do I sign up to get paid millions and have a lear jet for making decisions like these folks ?

-- confused

Well, yes, we DID know it was coming... (1)

dwm (151474) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259383)

...that is, the characteristic Slashdot "Bush is the Great Satan" slant.

In the future, please provide a link to an article that actually says what you summarize (such as "The U.S. Department of Justice announced that it had been instructed by President Bush to cease its drive to break up Microsoft" -- I missed that in the two linked articles), or clearly label pathetic zealotry-inspired speculation as such.

Thanks so much.

So much for being "tough on crime" (5, Interesting)

werdna (39029) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259384)

How can Ashcroft defend his tough-as-nails posture regarding alleged computer crime by a small-time russian company who threatens nobody, while refusing to pursue an in-the-bag conviction already won in part, of a notorious bad actor whose conduct will affect virtually every computer user on the planet?

Ashcroft's new motto: "We're tough on crime, except when they donated to our campaign fund."

Gee, I'm shocked. (2, Offtopic)

Skyshadow (508) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259386)

Who can say they're really surpised by this? Perhaps some of you would like to try to justify your Naderism now, eh?

Let's face it: We're in for 3+ more years of Bush Jr. doing bad things because he can get away with it in our climate of general apathy and disillusionment. Now, I'm all for being disillusioned, but watching this idiot get away with things that should have us on the White House lawn with torches and pitchforks is getting old.

Let's name a few: -Allowing religion to limit science.
-Irresponsibly cutting taxes and using it to blatently curry favor with the Nascar sect of American society.
- Environmental destruction in favor of short-term corporate gains (Alaska, Kyoto).
- Doing his best to restart the good 'ol cold war (ABM treaty breaking, trying to isolate China).

Let's face it: This guy's the worst example yet of how bad things are getting, and unless people start to notice they might as well just start allowing only Fortune 500 companies to vote in the general election (hey, you said you wanted to get rid of the electoral college, right?).

Why this happens (1)

Hasie (316698) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259394)

I have been saying that nothing is going to happen to MS for a long time. The reason has nothing to do with MS's legal team or the merits of the case, but everything to do with simple economics.

When it was announced that MS would not be broken up, MS's share price soared. No surprise there. The Nasdaq also rose dramatically. That's a bit more of a surprise, but a large part of the computer industry depends on the release of WinXP to drive sales, so it also makes sense. The Dow Jones also rose quite a bit. That's a surprise. The Dow Jones is supposed to be an INDUSTRIAL index, so it shouldn't be affected that much by MS's fortunes.

That's the whole story. You (for the American audience) / They (for the rest of us) elected a president on an economics ticket. The US economy is on the verge of a recession. From the above it is clear MS's fortunes in the near future will have a large part in determining whether a recession occurs or is avoided. There is no way Bush will allow the court to hurt the economy by hurting MS.

ray of hope (5, Informative)

davey23sol (462701) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259398)

The article that I first saw on CNet said that this announcement was *ONLY* the Justice Department and that this did *NOT* represent the wished of the individual states.

The newest CNet article is unclear, saying that the Justice Department and the States and the Judge will all meet over the next two weeks.

There might be a chance that the states won't go along with this. The Attorneys General of the states tend to be more progressive in consumer protection.

Wow that was an interesting vacation Mr. President (1)

disc-chord (232893) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259407)

What the hell did they put in his wheaties? First he castrates Stem Cell research, now he's putting his nose in the MS case... Do they require urine screening for this job or can any coke-head be president?

In all seriousness folks, I'm not surprised that MS won't be broken up (we already know how well that worked with the Baby Bells) but I'm shocked that Bush decided to put his nose in that mess! Considering how politically safe he walked the Stem-Cell research line... this is just out of left field!

It's time for... (1)

TeachingMachines (519187) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259409)

...violent protest. This can't be true

THE DEPARTMENT ALSO said it will not pursue the bundling issues in its protracted antitrust suit against the software giant.

What's left?

This is no surprise (1)

cygnusx (193092) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259418)

Given the current economic climate, this was the absolute worst time of heavy handed industry regulation anyway. And note that Justice will drop the demand for breakup, they will not stop considering other means to regulate MS. Who knows, at the end of the day, with Justice's shrill anti-MS posture gone, and MS's shrill anti-breakup posture gone, there actually may be a solution satisfactory to all. (Yeah, unlikely I know, but...)

The American Way... (1)

sethrab (471954) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259419)

You can buy anything in this world for money. Why should the Justice system, senators, or even the United States President be any different?

Microsoft is merely a demonstration of "applied influence".

Not a bad thing? (1)

zeus_tfc (222250) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259421)

Believe it or not, there are people that think that this might not be a bad thing. First let me clear up that I am not one of them. However, there are some reasons why having a strong microsoft may be beneficial, especially to the US Gov. An american company that controls most of the desktops in the world could potentially be very usefull.

On a side note, don't ever think that MS is more powerful that the Goverment. We are in a Republic, and that means that the people (and corporations) tend to be left to control themselves, but that is not necessarily the norm. If the US gov wanted to come down on MS (perhaps nationalizing the company) how would you stop them? Legal action? Through the government??

Just a couple of quick (and admittedly not real well thought out) thoughts.

"Outside of a dog, a man's best friend is a book. Inside of a dog its too dark to read." Groucho Marx

haha (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2259422)

and what were all you open source liberal commie slashdot geeks going to do if MS were broken up??


exactly what happened to IBM (1)

bigpat (158134) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259424)

This is exactly what happened to IBM in the 80s which made them behave better and led to greater innovation in the PC market. (and also gave rise to Microsoft's DOS)

A breakup would have been untenable and would have just made two monopolies instead of one. This way, at least they might find themselves under the eye of some court appointed watchdogs.
It isn't the monopoly that is the problem, it is the business practices that gave rise to that monoply and which continue today which hurt companies and consumers alike.

Uh hello? (1)

SpazAttak (104723) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259426)

No where in the story does it say that Bush ordered this. It never even mentions the president. That headline is one of the most pathetic and biased attempts at "journalism" I've seen since Sam Donaldson covered the last elections. You're job isn't to make up our minds for us or infer for us anything, it is to report what's happening and let us decide or infer what we want. I just lost ALOT of repsect for slashdot.
That is just irresponsible reporting.

OK, now what? (2)

10Ghz (453478) | more than 12 years ago | (#2259427)

No MS breakup, what now? What to do with MS?

Well, they have about 30 billion in cash and short-term investments. Maybe about 20 billion dollars in fines?

Massive fines to top-executives of MS (Gates, Ballmer etc.). It really hurts when they touch YOUR money!

Opening of some of their proprietary protocols. I'm thinking of Office file-formats (competing Office-suites could really compete) and maybe DirectX

And, what could WE do to help comptetition gain on them? Well, think of ways to help. You Linux-application crashed? Write a bug-report! You notice something could be done better? Write to the developers (if you can't change it yourself)! Write documentation! Create artwork for the desktops! Evangelize!

People, it's time we got off our arses and start doing something!

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