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Comment Birth records are more secret than you realize (Score 1) 104

It's an objective, publicly available piece of information. Birth records aren't secret, or in any way protected from public view.

I'm not sure that if you knew my name and the approximate year I was born that you could find my birth record. Probably depends on whether there was a birth announcement in the local paper when I was born and it is currently searchable on the internet. I can tell you that I can probably count on one or two hands the number of people who know me who know the city and state I was born in. I have very good friends who know my birthday but have no idea where I was born. I took a look and my state of birth would not allow you to get a copy of my birth certificate, so if you knew the place but not the date, you'd be out of luck there too. So birth records aren't really as open as you might think. Try looking up your own via an internet search. You might find it's harder to find than you think. This is a good thing as one of the ways identity theft gets done is via knowing a person's birth date and year, but that's in part a factor of greed in businesses being willing to give credit cards, loans, etc. on insufficient proof that you really are who you claim to be.

Comment Can Uber really make money at this? (Score 1) 113

Somebody here has probably done the math. Does it really make sense economically for Uber to get 100% of the cost of a ride this way but having to spend money to buy main, maintain and insure cars? Or is this another sign of a company that doesn't know what it is doing, perhaps most recently suggested by the recent charges of sexism and sexual harassment?

Comment Basically there are no public phones in the USA (Score 1) 124

Let's say you live in a large city and you tell your boss "I will check with you when I get to a public phone". Will your boss tell you "OK, check with me when you get to a public phone", or "Get a cell phone" ?

You couldn't get away with that in the USA. Public phones, or pay phones, are dead. Almost none exist any more. They are so rare that I've been known to take photos of them in amazement just to show people that a few of them actually do still exist.

Comment I can't draw any conclusions about Ellen Pao (Score 1) 895

After Ellen Pao, UNLV, Duke LaCrosse, and countless false police reports (resulting in legal action) about discrimination I'm waiting for evidence.

I am familiar with the case, maybe even more than you are, and I can't draw any conclusions from it as to who was right here. I'm American and I've actually served on juries twice and I can tell you that in a case like this when juries have no idea who is telling the truth, they'll opt for the least harm verdict, which means that ruling against Ellen Pao is the safest course of action because it avoids ruling against defendants who may actually be innocent. People get found innocent of murder because there's nothing more than circumstantial evidence in the case and juries won't always convict just on that. Both Ellen and the defendants provided reasonable, believable versions of what happened. The only conclusion I can come to is that Ellen didn't prove her case sufficiently for whatever reason and it shows just how difficult it is to win workplace lawsuits. Some years ago we had a lawyer who actually did this kind of work post about them and he told us that his first advice to all prospective clients was to drop the matter and get on with their lives if they possibly could because most workplace discrimination cases are losses for the plaintiffs.

Comment Re:Put the blame where it belongs. (Score 1) 202

Get rid of work visas outright. If a company can't find talent here in the US, they should feel free to sponsor a foreign national for citizenship - and take away the ability to summarily deport the foreign worker when they're through with them. .

That would require a change to US law. And it would potentially be a thorny legal issue in that it would potentially create a protected class (foreign workers) who might potentially have an easier path to US citizenship than people who marry US citizens. Also, you're assuming that US companies won't find a way to game your new system and I bet they can. My guess is they'd agree to your plan but still be allowed to pay low wages to such employees so that if those people leave, they don't care because they can bring in the next group of low paid future "citizens".

Comment Re:Legality (Score 2) 97

Companies are under no obligation to profit. They are completely free to fail and go bankrupt. They would like to profit and not fail, but they are under no legal obligation to do so.

In the USA you can sue publicly traded companies if you feel that management has been derelict and hope for the best in the court system, but in general you are quite right. My previous job was working for a US subsidiary of a European telco. I don't like to name who I worked for because I don't want to give them free publicity as I still, years later, have some grudges against them and how they treated their US based employees. Anyway, we competed in a market segment as a minnow against much bigger fish like AT&T. Our bigger competitors could offer pretty much the same stuff we did but cheaper because they had economies of scale in North America that we couldn't match that enabled them to have a lower price structure. Desperate to get business, our European bosses somehow got a major American company with offices all around the world as a customer. I don't want to name the company or what we did for them, but you would be absolutely appalled to know what we did for them, the fact that they needed it done at all, and the fact that they were too stupid to just do it themselves. I'll just vaguely say that we fixed a major email issue for them. We sold this service at a huge loss just to be able to get their business because management decided that if we could tell prospective clients that we had company X as a customer, we could get more business. It didn't work. In fact, it not only didn't work, our crazy North American sales team took it as a green light to literally sell everything they could at any price, even if at a loss, just to get business. Our CEO had to send out a company wide email around the world to every employee saying that we could no longer sell services to customers at a loss. That's how bad it got. Another point is that Amazon lost truckloads of money for years after it started and I remember investment writers seriously asking in the 1990s if the company would ever turn a profit. Sometimes you have to run at a loss to get established and hopefully you have the money available to do that.

Comment Re:Labor intensive jobs (Score 2) 114

Manufacturing jobs are returning to the US because labor is getting too expensive in China, as Chinese workers want a middle class lifestyle.

While that is not wrong that Chinese workers want a middle class lifestyle, there is more to manufacturing jobs leaving China than that. To get manufacturing started there, the Chinese government offered huge tax incentives to foreign companies willing to set up shop. China has now acquired enough internal expertise to make a lot of those things themselves, such as TVs for example, so the tax incentives and other things done to bring in the foreigners are going away so that they can shift more and more production to Chinese owned companies. I read an article today that said that foreign companies can still get good deals on manufacturing in China but only if they are willing to go to what were called third tier cities.

Comment Re:Nice...but... (Score 1) 212

....why are electric cars still ridiculously expensive? For most of the models on the market I can get two or even three gas powered cars. Sure, there probably is a difference in the cost of operation, but the biggest hurdle is the initial cost....which is why I drive a 15 year old car, although it only has 61000 miles on it. I rarely drive more than about 15 miles a day, I'd be the perfect candidate for an EV, but an EV costs as much as a house in this region.

Well, you can get a Nissan Leaf for about $37,000 before the $7500 tax credit the US government gives you for buying a fully electric vehicle. That brings the price down to about $30,000. That's not cheap, but you can't even get the really cheap subcompacts any more for less than $18,000 so you can't really get 2 or 3 cars for the price of the Leaf. Now if you're only comparing Tesla or Porsche or BMW prices, then yes, you are quite right. The Leaf could work well for you. I leased one for 3 years and I loved it. Unfortunately I have distant relatives who live beyond its range that I still need to visit at times and when I had the Leaf I also had an old vehicle I was using mostly for long trips and eventually it needed really expensive repairs. In the end I turned in the Leaf when the lease ended and the old car and got a recent year gasoline powered used car that I like. But the whole electric vehicle experience was really positive for me and I might go back to one in the future once higher range vehicles become available at Leaf like prices like the upcoming Bolt or that cheaper Tesla model (forgot what they call it).

Comment Re:They don't get it. (Score 1) 437

Speaking as someone who has spent thousands of dollars in legal assistance getting the appropriate visa in place allowing me to work in the US (but luckily am not from one of the countries in the executive order)... go fuck yourself. This isn't about American jobs, its about screwing over people you don't like and trying to win political points with morons.

People have spent years getting those visas. People may have even been living the in US for decades. This is not a moratorium on new visas, this is retroactively screwing people who have followed the process to get into the US legally.

It could actually both be about American jobs and screwing over people you don't like to win political points. There's nothing about one that prevents the other.

You might want to ramp your hysterical reaction down a notch or two. No legal residents are being kicked out. Some who left the country are having trouble getting back in, but nobody here is being kicked out. I read recently about a guy who has lived in the US for over 20 years and his children are young adults and naturalized citizens. For some reason Dad doesn't want to get US citizenship, so he's now in trouble because he travels outside the USA all the time on work and he's an Iranian passport holder. I admit to not really seeing the point in targeting people like him, but I have to ask why he hasn't applied for American citizenship yet. Maybe if he needs an Iranian passport to work in countries hostile towards the USA, he needs to consider getting a new job. I personally know immigrants who the first chance they could they applied for US citizenship and got tested and they are proud to be Americans. Maybe it's inconvenient for him but the truth is that having US citizenship provides protections that don't exist otherwise. As long as you are a long time legal resident without citizenship, you're always going to be at some level of risk that Uncle Sam might not want to extend your stay.

Comment It's more than putting jobs where the money is (Score 4, Interesting) 194

You probably don't know this, but IBM is also protecting US based management jobs while they are letting US based employees hit the bricks. Were you aware of that? I have a sort of relative by marriage (related to someone related to me through marriage) and he's been in middle management at IBM for probably at least 20 years now. IBM will keep him around forever even as they lay off other US based employees where he works. I'm guessing that maybe they make these people remotely manage foreign employees, but he hasn't given a lot of details and I rarely see him. I only know that he's said he has zero worries about ever losing his job there. A lot of what IBM is doing doesn't actually make a lot of sense. It's just designed to prop up the stock value.

Comment Got another accident for your list (Score 1) 117

You can possibly add Air France 447 to that list. Air France chose not to replace the air speed indicators until the plane returned to France on what would be its last flight. The passengers and crew lost that gamble. I have no inside knowledge as to whether that was for cost reasons, lack of training in Rio where they simply didn't know how to do the job there, or control freak reasons (I worked for a French company and until you actually work for them you really have no idea how much of a control freak the French are about everything) but failure to replace the air speed indicators prior to that flight started the chain of events that led to the crash.

Comment Re: News for Nazis (Score 3, Interesting) 1560

I am not mad at people like you because Clinton lost. I am unconcerned that we have different politics. And I don’t think less of people like you because you vote one way and I vote another. I think less of people like you because you watched an adult mock a disabled person in front of a crowd and still supported him. I think less of you because you saw a man spouting clear racism and backed him. I think less of you because you listened to him advocate for war crimes, and still thought he should run this country. I think less of people like you because you watched him equate a woman’s worth to her appearance and got on board. It isn’t your politics that I find repulsive. It is your personal willingness to support racism, sexism, and cruelty. You sided with a bully when it mattered and that is something I will never forget. So, no people like you and I won’t be “coming together” to move forward or whatever. Trump disgusts me, but it is the fact that he doesn’t disgust people like you that will stick with me long after this election.

I'm surprised that you still get don't get this, but the election proved one thing that myself and others have suspected or claimed for years and people like you don't want to admit. The only "issue" that matters for the vast majority of Americans, and I'd put it at about 80% of the electorate, is whether there is a D or an R next to their name. Some of my old friends who are women could not possibly have cared less about anything bad that Trump did on the campaign trail but completely flipped out over both and real and imaginary things related to Hillary. Trump bragged about grabbing women in the crotch? No problem. But Hillary was tied, barely, to Benghazi where a grand total of 4 Americans died and this was the single biggest American foreign policy disaster ever. People really don't care much about anything except whether a candidate has a D or an R next to their name. Pretty much everything else is negotiable. Congressional races prove this every election. Most Congressional districts regardless of who holds them are no longer competitive for members of the other party. Most of the people who aren't party tied voted for Trump in this election because he told people what they wanted to hear - namely that they were victims of powers and forces beyond their control and only he could stand up to those powers. Given the monopoly the Democrats have had on victimhood it's kind of funny that Trump outflanked them on this.

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