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January 19, 2008

Because "Warcraft" Can Only Be Played By Rich Folks

Can you believe this shit?

Instead of blocking high-bandwidth Internet traffic, why not just charge a little more for it?

Time Warner Cable has confirmed that it will begin testing a tiered pricing structure for subscribers to its RoadRunner cable broadband service in Beaumont, Texas, later this year. Under the new billing model, subscribers' monthly fees would be based on how much bandwidth they use.

Alex Dudley, a spokesman for Time Warner, said that the move comes in response to the increasing use of bandwidth-intensive software applications, particularly peer-to-peer networks. Dudley said that occasional, unpredictable spikes in Internet traffic due to heavy downloads can impede overall network performance.

"At some point we have to put in place some mechanism that will allow us to serve all our customers equally," Dudley said in an interview with InternetNews.com.

"One of the things to consider is the impact that peer-to-peer software is having on the network."

So just because their broadband networks are eons behind the networks provided by services in other countries for practically nothing, they are now charging people more to download more than five gigs a month? Well, if other broadband providers are smart, they would use this opportunity to attract customers away from AO-Hell-TimeWarner. But seeing as how the cable companies are pretty much cartels, they'll all just use this as a welcomed opportunity to make themselves more money.

"Medical Credit Score" To Determine Your Health Care

This is why we need to get rid of every single one of these rat bastards who put a price on keeping people alive and healthy.

The folks who invented the credit score for lenders are hard at work developing a similar tool for hospitals and other health care providers.

The project, dubbed “MedFICO� in some early press reports, will aid hospitals in assessing a patient’s ability to pay their medical bills. But privacy advocates are worried that the notorious errors that have caused frequent criticism of the credit system will also cause trouble with any attempt to create a health-related risk score. They also fear that a low score might impact the quality of the health care that patients receive.

. . .Several published reports have described Healthcare Analytics product as a MedFICO score, computed in a way that would be familiar to those who've used credit scores. The firm is gathering payment history information from large hospitals around the country, according to a magazine called Inside ARM, aimed at “accounts receivable management� professionals. It will then analyze that data to predict how likely patients will be to pay future medical bills. As with credit reports and scores, patients who've failed to pay past bills will be deemed less likely to pay future bills.

The idea sounds ominous to Pam Dixon, who runs the World Privacy Forum, which studies medical privacy issues.

"This is a bad idea and I don't think this benefits the consumer at all," Dixon said. "And what about victims of medical ID theft? Are we going to deny treatment to these people because they have a terrible MedFICO score?"

So which is it? Is health care a human right or a commodity reserved for those able to pay for it. The corporate pigs at the HMOs already have their answer, what's yours?

January 16, 2008

"Spade Work"

Sometimes the dog whistle is heard at a lower frequency than intended. From our favorite pillhead:

Limbaugh:…Obama is holding his own against both of them–doing more than his share of the “spade� work. Maybe even gaining ground at the moment. Using not only the spade ladies and gentleman—that when he finishes with the “spade� in the garden of corruption planted by the Clinton’s, he turns to the “hoe.� And so the spade work and his expertise using a hoe.

January 10, 2008

"Undecided Voters Are The Biggest Idiots On The Planet"

Okay, I lied. The previous post wasn't the last post on the primary. But looking at the election results on Kevin Drum's blog, I just can't pass this up. The title line from Family Guy just says it all about New Hampshire voters. As you all must have known by now, having this information inculcated into your heads for the past week, New Hampshire is justified in being the state with the first primary because it has a huge percentage of independent voters, and apparently that makes them more qualified to pick our candidates for the rest of us. Well looking at the exit polls, the plurality of those who wanted to leave Eye-Rack "as soon as possible" voted for Hillary Clinton of all people in the Democratic primary. And a slim majority those who want to keep troops in that sandbox voted for Obama.

Excuse my French, but what kind of backward-ass thinking is that? Not that it really matters, but those who disapprove of the war in Eye-Rack in the Republican primary favored McCain over Romney. I know the policy difference between those two in terms of Eye-Rack is whether we stay for a hundred years or a hundred and ten years, but why would people pick the person who was the godfather of the entire surge anyways?


January 9, 2008

Hopefully My First And Last Post On The Primary

Let me be clear: I would rather sit out the election than vote for Hilary Clinton as president. But in a way I am kinda glad she won the New Hampshire primary since it is a firm rebuke against the useless media morons who spent all day Monday carping on how her voice seemed to break during a discussion with that state's women voters. If she lost because of that then there really is no hope for this country.

January 4, 2008

Veto Proof Senate

At least Minnesota has one - for now. Let's see how Timmy the Tool is going to rule as dictator now.

January 2, 2008

$100 Oil

Your Boosh economy at work:

NEW YORK, Jan 2 (Reuters) - Oil vaulted to a record $100 a barrel on Wednesday as violence in Nigeria, tight energy stockpiles and a weaker dollar triggered a surge of speculative buying, dealers said. Oil's climb to the psychologically key triple-digit price sent stocks tumbling on Wall Street and darkened an already gloomy economic outlook in the United States, battered by a housing crisis and credit crunch. "Oil hitting $100 a barrel has sparked some concerns about the consumer and inflation," said Todd Salamone, vice president of research at Schaeffer's Investment Research. U.S. crude traded once at $100 a barrel, up $4.02, then eased back to $99.58 by 2:06 EST (1906 GMT). London Brent crude rose $4.04 to $97.89. "Oil could rise further from here. It's simple supply and demand fundamentals," said Kris Voorspools, energy analyst at Fortis in Brussels. The White House said it would not open up the emergency crude oil reserve to lower prices, while an OPEC member said the cartel was powerless to bring the market down from its lofty height. Crude oil prices jumped 58 percent in 2007, the biggest annual gain this decade. Oil has nearly tripled since 2000 -- driven by rising demand in China and other developing countries, tight stockpile levels and geopolitical turmoil. Weakness in the dollar has added to gains across the commodity sector as investors supported the underlying value of products denominated in the softening currency.