Feed on


I was watching a documentary about Janis the other night, and I saw how she had to placate Sam Andrew, the lead guitarist, while trying to tactfully point out that her vocal was the dominant sound, not which chord he played. Boy, some things never change:


That this might actually mean something positive for consumers – i.e. don’t squeeze my Roku!

New fears that Big Cable will squash online-video competition has caught the attention of the Justice Department — and is one of several antitrust issues now facing cable giant Comcast Corp.

Investigators have sent the equivalent of civil subpoenas to Comcast, other pay-TV providers, and programmers, in a broad sweep for information about contract provisions related to online video. It’s an industrywide probe.

Comcast’s proposed deal to sell wireless spectrum through a consortium of cable companies and partner Verizon Wireless to market quad-play bundles — wireless phone, wireline phone, Internet, and cable TV — is being analyzed separately by the Justice Department and the Federal Communications Commission. Critics say the deal amounts to a business truce between Comcast and Verizon Communications Inc., which controls Verizon Wireless and also competes with Comcast with its FiOS TV and Internet products. Comcast and Verizon officials say that there is no truce and that they still will compete.

In addition, Judge John R. Padova has scheduled for trial in September a class-action antitrust lawsuit that, since late 2003, has been wending its way through federal court in Philadelphia. The suit claims that Comcast clustered its cable systems in the Philadelphia region through swaps with other cable companies, leading to market power and higher prices for consumers.

Legal issues in the three cases are different, and, Comcast officials say, the matters are unrelated. But observers note that a common thread is the company’s willingness to push legal limits when pursuing growth.

Experts say that it’s very early in the online-video investigation, but that the probe seems serious.

“Online television is now getting to the point where it is a real threat to cable companies, and anything the cable companies do to undermine that threat will draw antitrust scrutiny,” said Ankur Kapoor, a partner and antitrust specialist with Constantine Cannon, a New York law firm.

Hurt so bad

Susan Tedeschi:


Not everyone thinks letting the CIA have the final say in where and how drones are used to attack is such a great idea.

Wish we’d never met

Kathleen Wilhoite:

Can’t find my way home

Ellen McIlwaine:

Since I fell for you

Bonnie Raitt:

Love needs a heart

Valerie Carter:

Norway bound

In a few weeks, my friend and her Norwegian husband are leaving the U.S. and moving to Norway. I’m so jealous.

She’s pregnant with twins, and was talking to me several months back about how her health insurance doesn’t kick in until a month before her delivery. I asked her why she didn’t just move to Norway. I said that with twins, and because of her age, she was a high-risk pregnancy and could deliver prematurely. What then? I said. “You could go bankrupt with what it costs here for a premature birth.”

She seemed to think that because Norway’s hospitals aren’t as shiny and new as ours that they weren’t as good. “Hell no,” I told her. “Their healthcare statistics are a lot better than ours.” I told her since she liked her in-laws and could get work there, she’d be crazy not to move.

So they’re going. I’m going to miss her, but damn, she’s going to be a lot better off than here, with all the crazy right wing nuts and their legislative enablers.

Crazy people are running our world

And it seems to be illegal to criticize them.

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