I spent yesterday evening watching the Canadian election returns, hoping that the fool Justin Trudeau might be turned out of office. Alas, it was not to be. While the Liberals lost their governing majority (a governing majority requires at least 170 seats), they finished with a plurality of seats (157), followed by the Conservatives (121), the Bloc Québécois (32), the New Democratic Party (24), the Green Party (3), and one independent.
The upstart People’s Party of Canada (PPC), founded by former Conservative foreign affairs minister Maxime Bernier, failed to win a single seat. Bernier himself lost his seat for the riding of Beauce in Quebec.... [Read More]
Yesterday, Switzerland elected a new lower house of the federal parliament, the Conseil National. This has, since 1963, been composed of 200 seats, apportioned among the cantons based upon their population. Elections are held every four years, with all seats in play. Elections are by a curious proportional representation scheme called “panachage”, about which you can read more at the link if you haven’t filled your quota of confusion for the day.
The results were a substantial shift to the left, with the Green Party and its splinter faction the Green Liberal Party both gaining largely at the expense of conservative and centre-right parties. Here is the makeup of the new Conseil National.... [Read More]
I have been really disappointed that two of the highest ranking Democratic women have shown such weakness. Hillary Clinton didn’t show enough leadership to make a concession speech the night of the election. No one wants to give one of those but you suck it in and deal with it. If Hillary were ever president, she would have on her desk “The Buck Never Stops Here”.
Nancy Pelosi got her feelings hurt and walked out of meeting. Trump has to face more garbage by breakfast than weak kneed Nancy faces by midnight. When the situation got tough she went and boohooed to a bank of microphones. ... [Read More]
In my expert experience, about 15% of Buchanan’s articles express a notable viewpoint or a pithy observation. His latest is of the latter type. Essentially, world leaders must be careful what they wish for, and our Congress is full of crapweasels.
We live in an age where the canon of Western Civilization is under fire. Those who oppose it want freedom from the rules laid down by it. When you think about it chaos has a lot freedom because you get to do almost anything. Nowadays people can pick their “truth”. No one has a right to harsh their mellow. If you can believe “you can fly” who am I to say you are not a bird. It sounds so nice but is it.
In the military the expendables are cannon fodder on the battle field. In this post modern world the expendables are fodder of the destruction of long held systems that kept society going. As way of explanation, there was a department store in South Korea* that fell down because the person building it wanted to add things by cutting away at the structure. More escalators and restaurants. It opened and then lasted 5 years. It looked good until the day over 500 people died. I think in the same way eating away at the structures will not cause immediate damage but the structure will come down. And when it does there will be plenty of casualties. Of course, the blame will go to the laws of physics being repressive and bigoted. (That last sentence was a joke, Damocles.)... [Read More]
My discomfort in the last few years, first with Russiagate and now with Ukrainegate and impeachment, stems from the belief that the people pushing hardest for Trump’s early removal are more dangerous than Trump. Many Americans don’t see this because they’re not used to waking up in a country where you’re not sure who the president will be by nightfall. They don’t understand that this predicament is worse than having a bad president. ... [Read More]
Sometimes, however, there are obviously incorrect decisions. Trump made just such a decision Sunday night, and if Turkish military action is already under way, it may be difficult to correct. He should try. Kurdish troops have fought and died alongside Americans, combatting our common jihadist enemy. Moral decency and strategic wisdom dictate that we don’t abandon then now. The Kurds deserve better than still more death, this time at the hands of Turkey’s authoritarian regime.... [Read More]
Ever since the emergence of the personal computer software market in the 1970s, vendors mostly adopted an “outright sale” model of licensing. The customer purchased the product, often originally in a shrink-wrapped box, which delivered the software on media such as floppy discs or CD-ROM, along with a license which (usually) conferred the perpetual right to use the software on one computer. This model, adopted from the consumer electronics industry, is not a particularly good fit for the software business. Unlike a television set or even a personal computer, software continues to evolve over time, as new features are added, support for new and more capable hardware is integrated, changes are made to maintain compatibility with the underlying software platform (operating system, window manager, database package, etc.), and modifications are made to comply with and support evolving industry standards.
All of this requires ongoing investment by the software vendor, and if revenue is received just once, with the initial purchase, it’s difficult to see how this can be funded, especially once the period of rapid growth comes to an end and a product obtains a large market share with an installed base which have already paid for it. Trying to persuade users to buy an entire new product and discard the old one is a non-starter, except for some very low price point products such as games (where the update is usually positioned as a new edition in a series). So, vendors mostly tried to persuade their installed base to pay for updates, at a fraction of the price of the original software, and customers constantly pushed back about the cost of the updates and often continued to use ancient versions of the software, which caused the vendor headaches and customers difficulty when older versions of a program wouldn’t read files written by the current release.... [Read More]