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Comment Re: As someone who worked for a small ISP... (Score 1) 114

Yes, ISPs don't want attested public network performance metrics to be available to consumers. They could use those real world analytics in their purchasing decisions instead of relying on the ISPs marketing affirmations. It is the same motivation that hospitals have for keeping patient outcomes secret. ISPs are the definition of a high tech company and certainly these same metrics are at the CEOs fingertips upon request.

Comment Re:The real issue (Score 1) 95

I believe it has more to do with Five Eyes spying than with censorship. Intelligence agencies go to great lengths to map relationships between individuals using communication metadata. LinkedIn is a gold mine for this collected and categorized relationship data and the Five Eyes have complete access to it while Russia doesn't.

Comment Re:GOV'T NEEDS MORE MONEY!!! Pay your fair share! (Score 4, Informative) 194

As far as free market medical care goes, if one has money to pay out of pocket for a medical procedure they can always get it. In countries with single payer medical care systems there are always private alternatives if one can afford to pay. While I am not a fan of Obamacare I don't see why people feel justified in complaining about it when healthcare prices are dictated by the free market they want to revert back to. Healthcare prices have always been skyrocketing even before Obamacare, the baby boomers just didn't notice it because they didn't need those services until today.

Regardless of a single payer or free market health care system in America the state and federal healthcare regulators need to require healthcare providers to publicly publish current health service prices and outcomes. Why is it when I visit a healthcare facility I always have to sign a waiver saying I am liable for paying for any service the provider deems necessary at whatever price the provider dictates? That is like going into a retail store and the sales associate fills your shopping cart up with whatever unpriced merchandise they think you want and then mail you a bill a few weeks later. It is absurd. I think price and outcome transparency would go a long way to drive down prices.

Also getting rid of for-profit health insurance companies would be a tremendous consumer savings. I have been covered by all the name brand health insurance companies over the years and they provide nothing of value beyond central planing/price fixing with providers. They provide no guidance on cost savings, don't want offend a provider, and I get dozens of bills from all the providers sent directly to me to figure out what was done and if it was necessary. They skim their profits off the top and then make up for it by denying claims or raising prices. The more money that goes directly to the providers the better.

Comment Re:CableCard continues to win (Score 1) 39

I am a cable card owner and I strongly disagree. Tivo is useless without an expense subscription and it is not PC friendly. Windows Media Center, the only way to record and play back copy-once content on a PC, was abandoned in Windows 10. SiliconDust, makers of the HDHomeRun device I use, are working on a DVR system that is CableCard approved but it has been in development for over a year and it still does not support DRM content. They do have a green android app that can play copy-once content but it is out of date and the new grey app is still waiting to get CableCard approval. Dealing with CableCards is a huge unnecessary pain which is why most non-technical people avoid it and pay set-top box rental fees.

CableCards were mandated by the FCC and without their regulations would not exist at all. CableCard certification, controlled by the cable industry, is intentionally onerous, expensive, and time consuming. How many new CableCard devices have come on the market in the last three years?

While I pay for the cable companies services I should be able to own everything in my house. The cable company certainly doesn't want to own the wiring in my house and they charge a hefty fee to work on it. Many of the copy-once channels already have Internet on-demand services that use built in browser DRM technology and one is free to buy their own cable modem so technology is not a barrier to dumping set-top boxes. There is nothing special about setup boxes except that they are a huge cash cow that the industry has a death grip on. Companies like Microsoft, Google, Sony, and Apply want to build unified entertainment solutions but the telcoms lock them out of the market.

Markets don't exist without competition and the FCC should absolutely open up the TV services to new innovators.

Comment Re:Analysis of the videos (Score 4, Informative) 251

2626 professional architects and engineers want an independent investigation of the events of 9/11. The 9/11 commission was only created after the strong insistence of the 9/11 victims families over a year later after that tragic event. It was initially going to be led by the politically polarizing figure Henry Kissinger and two of the co-chairs claim the commission was setup to fail. A new independent investigation is required to address the deficiencies of the original 9/11 commissions report.

Comment Re:see what the Union free work place get's you! (Score 5, Interesting) 297

There are a variety of online articles that contradict your claim that independent labor unions are allowed in China such as this one , this one, and this one. Perhaps Chinese labor unions are defined in law but protections are not enforced in practice like their environmental regulations.

Given Chinese censorship of news and social media it is difficult for anyone including Chinese citizens to know exactly what takes place in that country. I am more inclined to believe the accusations of dissidents than the wealthy authoritarian party's propaganda.

Comment Re:Fools think this is horrible. (Score 1) 442

The article doesn't define which court fees would be collected upon but recently in Texas one cannot renew a vehicle registration if there are any unpaid traffic fines so the public safety benefit of this collection scheme is dubious. Most likely police officers will be distracted from patrolling and responding to more serious crimes with constant collection notifications. I also wouldn't be surprised if police chiefs struggling with budget cuts re-prioritized officer assignments to exploit a new revenue stream.

Comment Individual tax payers get the shaft again (Score 4, Insightful) 278

Until 1913, customs duties (tariffs) and excise taxes were the primary sources of federal revenue. This was by design of the Constitutional framers. In 1913 the income tax was introduced and coincidentally or not the federal reserve corporation was also established. Provided that globalists corporations shift their tax liability to the most corrupt or more politely business friendly tax haven the funding of the US government falls almost exclusively on the shoulders of the middle class who can afford to pay taxes.

Do not like any provision in this agreement? Tough luck, your elective representatives have no power to enact any change.

This agreement is yet another boon for multinational corporations who own politicians and another step towards global totalitarian government.

Comment Predict the future transportation market (Score 1) 234

Put your speculator hat on: IBM, Google, and other car manufactures are working on not only autonomous cars but networked cars that communicate with each other to optimize traffic flow. Allowing human drivers in such a system would add an element of unknown risk to safety and efficiency. Given our fascist friendly government it would not be unreasonable to expect that the government will only allow automated vehicles on the road in the future. Once that happens and transportation is a service Uber wants to be a market leader in automated vehicle fleet ownership. As one can imagine owning a large part of the infrastructure necessary for all public and private transportation is a lucrative proposition.

Comment Government sanctioned monopolies don't want compet (Score 0) 127

The Federal Reserve Corporation doesn't want anyone cutting in on their business of creating debt out of thin air and exploiting fractional reserve banking. They certainly would love to shut down bitcoin like they do with other competing currencies but they have two challenges: it is internationally decentralized and their is no "official" alternative. Enter Fiat FedCoin that can be legally enforced and signed by international authorities. America was better off without a central bank and these vipers will do anything to inject themselves into every financial transaction.

Comment Re:Would that help? (Score 5, Insightful) 319

Fear is a great fund raiser for the military industrial complex. The Afghanistan and Iraq wars will cost between four and six trillion dollars. Think of what all that money could have paid for and what we got for it. I am much more afraid of dying a long and painful death from cancer rather than being killed in a terrorist attack which is statistically next to impossible to happen. All four of my grandparents were diagnosed with cancer and two died from it. Where is the trillion dollar war on cancer? On the other hand some brainwashed malcontents assaults a small group of people and one would think it is the apocalypse. Certainly the government, the media, and their corporate sponsors will exploit every penny possible out of this tragic event to further their institutional objectives.

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