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  1. #21  
    Quote Originally Posted by wynand32 View Post
    What's better for the end user would be a market completely unfettered by government intervention. It's remarkable that even today, with government's horrible influence so obvious in the financial markets, the housing markets, healthcare, etc., etc., that people are willing to accept more intervention in other areas. Do we honestly believe that politicians, who have shown themselves to be so stupid, uninformed, and corrupt in so many other areas are going to suddenly be intelligent, informed, and honest in this one?
    All you have to do is study history to know that while that sounds good it doesn't work to the average person's benefit. Periods of Laissez faire policies always end badly. As others have pointed out deregulation is what caused our current serious financial crisis and not too much government.

    Companies are just as likely to steal from you, cheat you, poison you or even kill you to make a few extra dollars if they are not properly policed as certain members of our society would be if there were no police around.

    To qoute someone famous: "We're trying to run a society here." Societies need rules to keep people working together and to keep people and companies from pursuing their own self interest to the extent that society as a whole is damaged.
  2. #22  
    Quote Originally Posted by SharonW View Post
    Government's influence in healthcare?!?! What? Like requiring FDA approval or would you find it better to let corporations decide what is harmful or not for patients? Moreover, it wasn't the government that created CDO's or CDS's, that was the marketplace. It was the marketplace that created financial instruments of mass destruction (props Buffet) that passed risk along thus making it easy to give away money to people who should have never been approved. But, this is a discussion for another forum.

    I, for one, appreciate the openness of the internet, originally a GOVERNMENT initiative, remember DARPA and Licklider? And the interference by the FCC in what appears to be anti-competitive behavior is a way to open the gates of the mobile internet. Cell phones are leaving the pure communication device arena and are now joining the open internet. Old standards can't apply anymore. Competition and openness foster innovation. Closed systems with only a few top dogs guarding the gardens does not.
    I completely agree with Sharon on this. (Never thought I'd use those words!)
  3. #23  
    Boy, this thread went off-topic fast. And I'm a little embarrassed to admit that I'm at least partially to blame. Still, it is a pretty interesting discussion....

    Quote Originally Posted by wynand32 View Post
    This is all patently false and ignores the system effects of the Fed, Fannie Mae/Freddie Mac, the Community Reinvestment Act, the FDIC, etc., etc. In addition, the financial services industry is and has been one of the most heavily regulated of all industries, with 10's of thousands of regulations. Calling it "unregulated" or "under-regulated" is ludicrous. Indeed, the very existence of the Federal Reserve means that we have the farthest thing from a true free market in finance.

    And note that I'm no fan of mixed-economy businessmen who, as you say, put out their hands for bailouts. They're simply the other side of the fascist coin.
    Talking to a Free Market Fundamentalist these days is a little like talking to a Communist circa 1992: "No, the fall of the Soviet Union does not prove that Communism doesn't work. They were never a pure Communist system in the first place! In fact, they were never Communist at all! Their system was State Capitalism! That's right, the fall of the Soviet Union is proof that capitalism is doomed! Doomed! Doomed! It's been scientifically proven people!"
  4. #24  
    Quote Originally Posted by Dr.Grace View Post
    It's correct that lack of _appropriate_ regulations allowed the bank scandal. It's also true that we are now over-reacting by creating too much regulation. There is a legitimate role for government. But there are also situations when government over-reaches. That was the impetus for the American Revolution and the reason why our Constitution includes so many checks and balances on government. The U.S. typically swings between greater and lesser government intervention. Right now we are facing the likelihood that the current government will create a crippling net of regulations that will stifle commerce, just the opposite of what is needed to get us out of the crisis.
    Well, the thing that got us out of the big crisis that the current one is most often compared to, The Great Depression, wasn't laissez-faire deregulation. It was two massive government programs called The New Deal and World War II.

    But to a certain extent you're right. This country tends to swing between extreme right wing and left wing governments. This doesn't mean that the answer to the problem is for one party to stop trying to correct the other's excesses. Ultimately, the electorate will swing back the other way, preventing the worse excesses of one party from damaging the country too much.

    Or put more simply, conservatives have run this country into the ground for eight years, now it's the liberals' turn to run this country into the ground.
  5. #25  
    Back on-topic for a moment.

    My take on the sync madness is that Apple has reached a point where it is comparable to Microsoft in power in the media player and smartphone markets. iTunes is something of monopoly for them. So every time they squash an iPhone app or try to interfere with the Pre's ability to sync to iTunes, it not only exposes itself for a potential anti-trust suit, it also chips away at their own brand.

    Palm was wise to acknowledge Apple's power by making the Pre compatible with iTunes. It makes their users happy by giving them a convenient way to use their devices with their existing hardware and software without installing additional software. If Apple accepts this, it gives them an extra bullet point to put in the Palm Pre ads and makes for an easier transition for iPod and iPhone users. But if Apple fights them as they are doing so now, it makes them look bad. In the user's minds they stop being the likeable hipster of tech companies and become another Microsoft. And Palm becomes the loveable underdog.

    Since in our culture, brand is as much about perception as it is about reality, for Palm it's a win-win.
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