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Author: TMFCheeze Big gold star, 5000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 157041  
Subject: Solving "The Microsoft Problem" Date: 4/6/2000 3:32 PM
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Everything is clear now. The Judge has ruled, everything is decided, and there is nothing left for deliberation except the consideration of appropriate remedies to correct the damage that has been done, and to prevent any future relapse into, should we say, less-than-optimal behavior on the part of Microsoft.

Yeah, yeah, I know there will be appeals. I don't want to hear from appeals. I'm a solutions guy, okay?

Thing is, The Microsoft Problem is a nebulous thing; it's hard to grasp it in its entirety. Study it closely, and soon you discover that it is a whole miasma of separate and distinct problems, each one demanding a separate solution. I don't want to pretend I have all the answers (I do, but let's let that go for now), but at least I can hope that my proposals can prompt some consideration of a long-term resolution.


Problem: Microsoft represents an unpleasant concentration of geekiness.

Let's face it: we all know geeks, they make a positive contribution to society, and some of us (and we all know who you are) might even be geeks. However, while I embrace diversity in all things human, and I applaud the geek lifestyle, I'm afraid I must admit to a certain unease when I'm confronted by too many geeks all at once. In packs, they're scary. I get uncomfortable when there are too many people who are obviously smarter than I am nearby, guys who tell knock-knock jokes with the word "cosecant" in the punchline, guys who walk around humming in logarithms. It's creepy, frankly, and most of all, I just don't want to be the dumb guy in the room. And neither does society as a whole. It's just too intimidating.

Geeks are like a special sort of human being, sort of the way uranium is a special sort of element. It's okay to have it around in small amounts, but if you get too much of it in one place you're asking for trouble. And bill Gates and his gang in Redmond are like U-235, the geekiest, nastiest sort of uranium that they make atom bombs out of. If you get too much of that stuff in one place, you get a chain reaction, and the whole thing starts to melt down, and then you're in really big trouble.

The solution, of course, is to insert some inert matter into the critical mass, material that in radioactively neutral. Once the control rods, so to speak, are inserted into the fissionable material, the reaction is halted, and things are safe again. Therefore, it is clear that we need to mis the geek population at Microsoft with some decidedly ungeeky people, people who are the least geeky you can find, people who are technologically inert, people who don't use cell phones or design semiconductors or develop information technology solutions for today's dynamic business environment.

I mean, of course, Amish people.

The Solution: Judge Jackson should order Microsoft to hire one Amish employee for every six geeks. The presence of these non-technical people in the geeky Microsoft milieu should temper and ease the dangers of overly-concentrated geek-related meltdown.


Problem: Bill Gates has personality "issues."

You know it, whether you want to admit it or not: Bill Gates is nobody's first choice for a square dance partner or swimming buddy. He's not your obvious pick for a three-day drunken road trip to Tiajuana. Frankly, he is far more satisfying as a combatant in an episode of "Celebrity Deathmatch" than as someone you'd like to share a popsicle with. The problem is not really anybody's fault. It's simply that the complex of his general behavioral patters is too closely controlled by Gates himself. There isn't enough outside influence guiding his interpersonal habits. This leads to a lack of poise in the patterns of his social activity, and in the comprehensive interface between Bill Gates and the complex world in which he is fated to dwell. He's ornery, aggressive, antisocial -- traits that would be extremely attractive in your average Costco Security Guard, but not for the richest guy in the Solar System. This has led to no end of trouble between Microsoft and the world at large.

The Solution: Open source Bill Gates's DNA code.

Judge Jackson should, by now, understand that we have the technology. We can rebuild Bill Gates -- make him better than before. By opening up Gates's DNA for wide independent development, we can expect a cooperative evolution of his personal functionality and a more pleasant overall design to emerge in time. After all, kludgy is as kludgy does, and once the source of that kludginess is divorced from command of the product, a more graceful user experience is all but certain.


Problem: Microsoft deliberately booby-traps its software in order to render the products of competitors useless.

This is one of the main anti-competitive practices that Microsoft has been charged with over the course of the ongoing litigation. An independent company develops a software tool, and whammo -- Softie whips out its own version of the product, gives it away for free, and integrates it so thoroughly into its operating system that a competing product cannot be loaded in its place without a pair of ice tongs and a Master's Degree in phrenology. This renders the independent software useless and tends to drive the companies that produce it into oblivion.

The Solution: Spin off that part of Microsoft that is in charge of inserting bugs into the software.

The new firm, to be known as It's a Feature, Inc. (Nasdaq: OOPS), can find a lucrative technological niche crafting impressive new on-screen error messages and implementing cutting-edge system failure innovations.


Problem: Microsoft is too big and has too much money.

Here we have a problem which writes its own solution. Microsoft, at last measure, has something like $18 billion in cash sitting in its enviable coffers. By sheer coincidence, it also happens to have about 18,000 rank-and-file employees. Right there you have the makings of 18,000 start-up companies, each with one million dollars in seed money.

The Solution: Split up Microsoft not into two or three hulking behemoths, but into thousands upon thousands of nimble, eager dotcoms and tiny software development shops. Sure, a lot of them will go out of business in the first 18 months, but you never know -- one of them could be the next Microsoft!


Problem: Microsoft is predatory and anticompetitive.

Solution: Remove Bill Gates from his current position at the company and instead give him a job that is more suited to his temperament: Head Coach and General Manager of the New York Yankees.
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Author: rehowes Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 28811 of 157041
Subject: Re: Solving "The Microsoft Problem" Date: 4/6/2000 4:06 PM
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I mean, of course, Amish people.

Why not burrocrats?

Randall

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Author: ptbb Two stars, 250 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 28813 of 157041
Subject: Re: Solving "The Microsoft Problem" Date: 4/6/2000 4:18 PM
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Why not burrocrats?

Ha! I like that... burro-crats... presumably referring either to their asinine nature or to their frequent association with the Democratic party.


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Author: rehowes Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 28815 of 157041
Subject: Re: Solving "The Microsoft Problem" Date: 4/6/2000 4:26 PM
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Ha! I like that... burro-crats.

I'm glad you got the joke. I posted it and then started wondering if the spelling/grammar police would attack me. But I hadn't considered the party affiliation angle. Can't say it takes anything away from the pun.

But then I realized that I have the spelling/grammar equivalent of the nuclear bomb. I can use "irregardless" in several posts. :)

Randall

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Author: Sinfonian Big gold star, 5000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 28875 of 157041
Subject: Re: Solving "The Microsoft Problem" Date: 4/7/2000 8:30 AM
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Cheeze, If there were more of them left, I'd suggest infiltrating MSFT with Shakers, rather than Amish people.

Since both Shakers and Geeks are celebate, that could be their common ground.

Sinfonian




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Author: eaco One star, 50 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 28883 of 157041
Subject: Re: Solving Date: 4/7/2000 10:35 AM
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RE: Post #28807, this board, by TMFCheeze dated 4/6/00 3:32PM

Brilliantly creative satire (it glitters!). Hope Bill Gates reads this---he could use a good laugh.



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Author: TMFRacer Big red star, 1000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 28889 of 157041
Subject: Re: Solving "The Microsoft Problem" Date: 4/7/2000 12:15 PM
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Way to go Cheeze!

I was lauging my Foolish head off reading your post!
Great job!

Fool on!

Your Foolish Friend back East,
Frank
TMFRacer

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Author: TMFCheeze Big gold star, 5000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 28932 of 157041
Subject: Re: Solving "The Microsoft Problem" Date: 4/7/2000 4:04 PM
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Sinfonian suggests:
<<<
Cheeze, If there were more of them left, I'd suggest infiltrating MSFT with Shakers, rather than Amish people.

Since both Shakers and Geeks are celebate, that could be their common ground.
>>>


True. But then again, I'm not sure shaking U-235 is such a good idea. Could get dicey. Like Woody Allen asked in regard to the H-Bomb: "Have you ever seen what happens when one of those things falls off a desk accidentally?"

Cheeze :-)

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Author: TMFCheeze Big gold star, 5000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 28934 of 157041
Subject: Re: Solving Date: 4/7/2000 4:09 PM
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<<<
RE: Post #28807, this board, by TMFCheeze dated 4/6/00 3:32PM

Brilliantly creative satire (it glitters!). Hope Bill Gates reads this---he could use a good laugh.
>>>


Thanks for the thoughts, eaco. I don't know if it's as brilliant as you suggest. Don't stop saying so, though. It's good for my ego! ;-)

Still, it would be cool to imagine Bill Gates reading it. I hope he gets a laugh or two from it, if it ever makes it to his desktop.

Cheeze

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Author: TheGarcipian One star, 50 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 28956 of 157041
Subject: Re: Solving Date: 4/7/2000 9:09 PM
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Thanks, Cheeze, from me too! That was fantastic. A great read to end a wild week. I especially liked the "Open Source Gates' DNA" solution. Very funny! Keep up the good work and let me know what special diet you're on that add so much creativity to one's writings...

Gar

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Author: eeegad Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 28958 of 157041
Subject: Re: Solving "The Microsoft Problem" Date: 4/7/2000 9:28 PM
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The Solution: Open source Bill Gates's DNA code

Jeeze, Cheese! This is unbelievable. You come up with this incredible idea on the 6th and just look what happened to the biotech stocks. They skyrocket. It can't be coincidence.

Eeegad!


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Author: QtPi Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 28959 of 157041
Subject: Re: Solving Date: 4/7/2000 10:00 PM
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and you were not the only one! cheeze's post is definitely a copy and paste - to be read over again.. especially on one of those "i-hate-computers" days.

Foolishly yours.. and ROFL..

QtPi



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Author: reznat Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 28972 of 157041
Subject: Re: Solving "The Microsoft Problem" Date: 4/8/2000 12:56 AM
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Most of what you wrote is okay, but Bill Gates as "Head Coach and General Manager of the New York Yankees"??!! The Yankees have a fine General Manager in Brian Cashman, they have coaches for pitching, batting, the bull pen, 1st base and 3rd base. They even have a bench coach, Don Zimmer. The Yanks may even have a psycholist on staff, but they don't have a Head Coach.

The job for Bill Gates with the Yankees is for him to personnaly finance a new Yankee statium. For $1 billion he could buy a new site in the Bronx and build a state-of-the-art ball park. Then, George "the Boss" Steinbrenner would be a tenant of Bill Gates. It would be a clash of the titans, or at least a clash of the egos.

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Author: TMFCheeze Big gold star, 5000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 28977 of 157041
Subject: Re: Solving Date: 4/8/2000 3:14 AM
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<<<
Thanks, Cheeze, from me too! That was fantastic. A great read to end a wild week. I especially liked the "Open Source Gates' DNA" solution. Very funny! Keep up the good work and let me know what special diet you're on that add so much creativity to one's writings...
>>>


Thanks, but I really can't take the credit. I'm just writing down what the little voices tell me, after all.

Cheeze :-)

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Author: TMFCheeze Big gold star, 5000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 28978 of 157041
Subject: Re: Solving "The Microsoft Problem" Date: 4/8/2000 3:18 AM
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<<<
The Solution: Open source Bill Gates's DNA code

Jeeze, Cheese! This is unbelievable. You come up with this incredible idea on the 6th and just look what happened to the biotech stocks. They skyrocket. It can't be coincidence.
>>>


Eeeegad! I hadn't thought of that!

Spielberg is going to want the movie rights to this... "Jurassic Gates!"

Cheeze :-)

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Author: TMFCheeze Big gold star, 5000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 28979 of 157041
Subject: Re: Solving "The Microsoft Problem" Date: 4/8/2000 3:24 AM
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<<<
The job for Bill Gates with the Yankees is for him to personnaly finance a new Yankee statium. For $1 billion he could buy a new site in the Bronx and build a state-of-the-art ball park. Then, George "the Boss" Steinbrenner would be a tenant of Bill Gates. It would be a clash of the titans, or at least a clash of the egos.
>>>


Now we're getting somewhere... With Bill's money, he could build the world's first one-seat stadium, and watch every game by himself.

Think of the perks he'd get on Fan Appreciation Day.

Cheeze :-)

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Author: eeegad Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 29007 of 157041
Subject: Re: Solving "The Microsoft Problem" Date: 4/8/2000 12:46 PM
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Spielberg is going to want the movie rights to this... "Jurassic Gates!"

Or perhaps a block buster three movie contract. "Raiders Of The Last Byte", " "Windows Of Doom", and "Last Judgement"

eeegad!



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Author: WJosB Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 29009 of 157041
Subject: Re: Solving "The Microsoft Problem" Date: 4/8/2000 12:49 PM
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Re: Solving the MSN problem: Would anyone like to comment on the power of the DOJ vs Big Business? I would like to see a discussion.

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Author: edith2 Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 29060 of 157041
Subject: Re: Solving "The Microsoft Problem" Date: 4/8/2000 11:15 PM
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Have you considered a career as a writer. That Microsoft yarn was a hooter!

nelson

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Author: dsheehy Big gold star, 5000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 29088 of 157041
Subject: Re: Solving "The Microsoft Problem" Date: 4/9/2000 6:11 AM
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True. But then again, I'm not sure shaking U-235 is such a good idea. Could get dicey. Like Woody Allen asked in regard to the H-Bomb: "Have you ever seen what happens when one of those things falls off a desk accidentally?"

It could work, if it weren't for one important factor:

Microsoft has no rhythm.

This means that a stable sympathetic resonance could not be achieved. Gates would not be able to keep the Shaker rhythm, giving rise to dicordant chaos.

So what's the answer?

Perhaps standard-issue luddites would fit the bill. Maybe Y2Ken is available?


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Author: Sharzan Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 29172 of 157041
Subject: Re: Solving "The Microsoft Problem" Date: 4/10/2000 8:07 AM
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Bieng a request, I know this is off on a tangient a little, but the topic area is the same. I am looking for anyone who has strong opinions against Microsoft who may be willing to share these via a webcam interview. It's all in aid of a very good cause: a soon to be launched web/television service based in London. We are currently doing a short demo piece on this topic and are looking for expressive voices willing to share their views. If you are, please do let me know asap either here or on the email address: shilal@uk.now.com.

Thanks, Sharzan.

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Author: uRsamnon One star, 50 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 29185 of 157041
Subject: Re: Solving Date: 4/10/2000 10:24 AM
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Hmmm..Quite interesting that it's cool to slam Amish or Shaker people ..Guess the chance of them reading something on here is quite slim..

Never quite understood why some groups can be put down, but not others..

If I were to say anything cpossibly construed as negative about blacks/hispanics/<your choice>..
there'd probably be 1000 attacking posts..But it's cool to slan the Amish..

Maybe we could try to learn things from other people?
their heart attack rate is probably a little lower as they don't run around with 3 cell phones & laptop buzzing while driving down a jammed freeway..

Oh well, everyone likes to be smug about someone else
(some other group)

Racist on!!

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Author: WildWolf2 Two stars, 250 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 29189 of 157041
Subject: Re: Solving Date: 4/10/2000 10:57 AM
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...Quite interesting that it's cool to slam Amish or Shaker people..

Racist on!!


You forgot one group that one may freely slam and make sport of....heterosexual white males

wolf

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Author: OleDocJ Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 29191 of 157041
Subject: Re: Solving Date: 4/10/2000 11:04 AM
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uRsamnon
Oh well, everyone likes to be smug about someone else
(some other group)

Racist on!!


Pardon me, sir! That has NOTHING to do with racism or cultural discrimination! For eons people have made jokes about their NEIGHBORS!

Here's one...

A Hoosier walking along the banks of the Ohio River saw two Kentuckians on the the other side: One was hold up a pole while the other climbed the pole with a tape measure.

The Hoosier cried out, "Whatcha all doin'?"

One of the Kentuckians hollered back, "We're tryin' to find out how tall this pole is!"

The Hoosier yelled back, "Wale, why don'tcha jest lie it down on the ground an' measure it?"

The Kentuckian replied, "Wale, we don' wanna know how long it is! We wanna know how TALL it is!"

...or maybe...

As the story goes in Montana, when Custer left the Dakotas on his way to the Battle of the Little Bighorn, he instructed the people remaining in the Dakotas as follows, "Don't DO anything until I get back!"

Don't be so thin skinned! Some jokes (even "cultural" jokes) are JUST jokes. Don't make it something that it is not!


OleDoc


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Author: uRsamnon One star, 50 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 29198 of 157041
Subject: Re: Solving Date: 4/10/2000 11:25 AM
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yes, here's another funny one! what do you get when you cross a black & a chinaman?

A car thief who can't drive!

(just a joke)

Why did god create gentiles?

SOMEONE's gotta pay retail!!

(hey, don't be so thin-skinned, or I'll make jokes dissin' thin-skins!)

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Author: TMFCheeze Big gold star, 5000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 29211 of 157041
Subject: Re: Solving Date: 4/10/2000 1:01 PM
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For the record, the Shaker sect died out over a hundred years ago. There's nobody in that group alive who is capable of being offended.

As for the Amish, I called them "ungeeky." And I said that they "don't use cell phones or design semiconductors or develop information technology solutions for today's dynamic business environment." Given that that statement is avowedly true, I'm not sure how that is supposed to be offensive, but if it is, I apologize.

BTW, let's avoid posting ethnic jokes in this thread. That could get out of hand really fast.

Cheeze

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Author: PietrzakFool Three stars, 500 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 29212 of 157041
Subject: Re: Solving Date: 4/10/2000 1:12 PM
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TMFCheeze wrote:

BTW, let's avoid posting ethnic jokes in this thread. That could get out of hand really fast.

Hey, you started it, geeknophobe. :)


John ("Proud to be a Geek")

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Author: GR82B Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 29278 of 157041
Subject: Re: Solving Date: 4/11/2000 12:16 AM
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WJosB: Would anyone like to comment on the power of the DOJ vs Big Business? I would like to see a discussion.

GR82B: I believe that this case is nothing more than a tax grab and I'm surprised that more people aren't up in arms over it. We have our own problems with government meddling in business up here in the great white north and it would be a shame if the U.S were to head down the same slippery slope. I work for an American company and frequently get asked about the differences between Americans and Canadians as most people assume that Canadians are very similar to Americans.

The difference, I believe, is that America was formed in a revolution against unfair taxation and much of your culture and attitude results from that beginning. Canada was just sort of given up by Britain when the cost of keeping us was greater than the benefit. As a result, too many of my countrymen still expect the Nanny-State to look after them from cradle to grave.

But I digress. A true monopoly can only be created by government, and since I don't remember any act of Congress forming the monopoly of Microsoft, I can only deduce that no monopoly exists. If the DoJ is successful in this action, then no company will be safe in the future as your government looks for the next easy pickin's. Any pretense at creating value for consumers or fair competition (an oxymoron?) is just a smokescreen for the bureaucrats to get their hands on all that corporate wealth. That would also solve A. Greenspan's dilemma about the wealth-effect as there wouldn't be one.

Regards.

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Author: TMFSpirit Big gold star, 5000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 29390 of 157041
Subject: Re: Solving Date: 4/12/2000 12:51 AM
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Good morning Geeks, Amish, hetrosexual while males and other Microsoft investors,

Cheeze, I have been on vacation in Singapore for the past week and just caught up reading the board. I want to applaude you on your great "Swiftonian" satire; Solving Microsoft's Problems....a true gem of a piece. I'm still laughing. Oh, I just watched a Bob Villa documentary about the Shakers's architecture. Bob said there were still about ten Shakers left. :)

GR82B said:

I believe that this case is nothing more than a tax grab and I'm surprised that more people aren't up in arms over it.

How right you are. The use of the word "fine" in today's society is one of the great examples of Orwellian "double speak". Administrative tax would more accurate. I believe most, if not all, fines are nothing more than thinly veiled taxes. An excellent case in point occurred around 1979-80 when the State of Wisconsin was faced with an unexpected budget deficit. The legislature quickly sprang to action and enacted a bill that authorized a 50% increase in the number of State Troopers, doubled all traffic fines, and equipped all cruisers with a credit card imprinter for on-the spot payment of fines. Ahh, such efficiency, the on-the-spot payment twist eliminated a lot of administrative costs and increased profit margins. The troopers pursued it with gusto, dishing out tickets for the slightest infraction. The legislators gloated over their profound wisdom as the authorities beamed with pride at the efficiency of it all. The State Troopers were transformed from tax-paid protectors of public safety into prime revenue gatherers. One of my neighbor's teenage sons was cited for doing 28 mph in a 25 mph zone....on a ten speed bike. It cost him something like $68 as I recall.

Fool On!

Spirit

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Author: IreneRose Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 30087 of 157041
Subject: Re: Solving "The Microsoft Problem" Date: 4/16/2000 7:00 PM
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PLEEEEEEEEEEEEEZE NO!!! WE DON'T WANT HIM IN NEW YORK!!!!

(Aside from that last paragraph, I loved the sentiments!)

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Author: IreneRose Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 30091 of 157041
Subject: Re: Solving Date: 4/16/2000 7:22 PM
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Cheeze sed: "For the record, the Shaker sect died out over a hundred years ago. There's nobody in that group alive who is capable of being offended."

Sorry Cheeze, you're not quite correct. There are about 10-15 of them still in existence (truth!) who apparently don't yet know they're extinct, and might not be so pleased to hear that they're not alive (but they certainly are on their way out).

Irene Rose


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Author: nahid Two stars, 250 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 30108 of 157041
Subject: Re: Solving "The Microsoft Problem" Date: 4/16/2000 11:34 PM
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Dear Cheese,
I am a bit late reading your post on Microsoft, but better late than never!!
I just read the NY times Magazine article on Bill Gates Foundation, it as made me so very happy that I want to share it with someone, and I hope that you are that person./
Please let me know what you think. i hope he gets richer and richer the world needs people like Bill Gates and his wife.
If there are people like Bill and Melinda Gates then there is hope for our future.
Fool on Cheese, I look forward to your articles.
Nahid

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Author: lendance Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 30908 of 157041
Subject: Re: Solving "The Microsoft Problem" Date: 4/22/2000 2:14 PM
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My solution: Since all MS products are licensed to the 'user' and not 'owned' by him, I think Bill Gates and MS should require ALL government agencies to REMOVE all MS programs (Windows 98, NT, Office, etc.) from their computers and send all discs and manuals back to the company.

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