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I don't really see a big niche for these vehicles in the cities I've lived in. Most people would rather share a full-featured car than own one with severe limitations.

Parking is the biggest hassle with having a car in a dense city, and making the car electric doesn't solve that problem. Car sharing, on the other hand, can help a lot.

Maybe there could be a car sharing service that features this class of a vehicle, and is cheaper than Zipcar, etc.


I like the innovation here. If it catches on it will be interesting to see how the market values a company where a far larger slice of the employees are going to be financially independent. This arrangement doesn't really seem to be in the shareholders' interest.



Kongregate always had decent-but-linear growth and very good retention (of registered users, not so good for guests). Worked for us: here's a graph of web sessions per day with the units taken off.


It flattened out as mobile took all the growth out of browser-based games. It took us a while to figure mobile out but now we're doing well as a publisher/marketer/funder of indie free-to-play games.



This piece was inspired by the comments on the How to Fight Corruption with Game Theory article I submitted this weekend - https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=8675489.

It's my first post on Medium... feedback appreciated again!


Want to back that up with some evidence?


I was curious about what was written, so I thought I would respond after a quick Google search.

I assume the losing your job part is referring to the Mozilla CEO news somewhat recently. I thought it didn't really need any research as it is posted about here often enough.

The maps part is described in this article: http://www.nytimes.com/2009/01/19/us/19prop8.html

Or with a little more opinion on this page: http://sfist.com/2009/01/09/mash-up_map_of_google_maps_and_p...

(the second link has a link to the actual site with the map, but it doesn't load for me)


Yes, one CEO candidate lost his job for a donation. Let's balance that with the damage done by routine corruption - we have to strike a balance between transparency and privacy.


The whole point about disclosure is to enable feedback. The intended feedback may be for people to be able to make informed decisions about who is funding a candidate, but disclosure also enables other kinds of feedback. It allows coercion to be applied to people (donors) once their identities are known. Brenden Eich is one example.

The ability to donate anonymously is an important firebreak. It protects those with minority opinions. It also protects people in general from those who think that coercion is an acceptable means to achieve an end.

I should not have to worry that my boss will see that I gave a donation to his pet political cause in order to keep my job. Likewise, I shouldn't have to worry that my boss disagrees with some cause that I have donated to and fires me.

I also shouldn't have to worry that one of these reprehensible groups who believe in bullying and coercion might decide to make an example out of me just because I supported the side of a cause they disagree with.

Shouldn't a political debate be more about ideas than the people who are involved?

Disclosure seems to enable a kind of intolerance, a kind of "guilty by association" kind of thinking that really has no place in civil society.


> Shouldn't a political debate be more about ideas than the people who are involved?

What if the idea is "I'd like a big contract for my construction company"

Or, "I'd like favorable regulation for my cable broadband provider".

This isn't just a debating society. It's a market with winners and losers. Donor harassment is a pretty abstract problem, with Brenden Eich as pretty much the only example. Corruption is routine, massive, and very concrete.


Having my boss be able to tell how I contributed to a political campaign is not an abstract problem. It's been a big enough problem in the past that there were laws passed to try to prevent it (see for example, the Hatch act).

Mr Eich is the only example I mentioned. In just this one political cause (prop 8) he was one of many people who were bullied.

How about Scott Eckern? How about Jose Nunez?

And, for each example that has been made, how many people choose to remain silent? How does that get measured? Making high profile examples out of people is very cost effective and efficient. It demoralizes and defunds your opposition.

I find whole idea that it is somehow acceptable to enable the bullying of individuals by extremist groups to be deeply unsettling. Anonymous donations prevent this sort of abuse very simply and effectively.

If it's corruption you're after, then go after that. Either limit the power that the elected officials have (term limits, etc) or investigate them.

People with money and power will always find ways to buy certain politicians. If one way is blocked, another will open up. Just look at how many politicians have cushy K street jobs once they retire (provided they do their masters bidding while in office). No campaign donations to trace or disclose.


Am I the only one who's uncomfortable with the idea that political speech is kosher, but responding to political speech in a way which is "bullying" is not?

I feel like we should do more to separate the abusive harassment (which is clearly not okay) from other real-life consequences, maybe including losing friends or a job, that come with holding and furthering a political belief. The latter seems like it could plausibly be a feature of a well-functioning political discourse.


Why would you think that firing an employee over a political contribution they made or did not make would be in any way acceptable?

Well functioning political discourse is, above all, tolerant. A hallmark of non-functioning politics is the use of coercion.

How would you feel if you worked for one company, and they required you to fund a certain cause. Then, you get fed up with that, but you're now on the officially reported doner list for that cause (which your employer used to ensure compliance), and another employer says they won't hire you based on a simple web search of causes you've "supported" in the past?


> Why would you think that firing an employee over a political contribution they made or did not make would be in any way acceptable?

Why would you think making a political contribution is in any way acceptable? Because we live in a free society. You can't force someone to employ you. We've generally outlined narrow exceptions to that rule, and this generally isn't one.[0]

If you don't support a business's politics, if you don't think they'll use their money for good, you have the right not to give them yours. It doesn't seem at all intuitive to me that that right should disappear when the money's moving the other way.

(Of course that presumes a well-functioning market for labor... If (hah) that doesn't exist, we can only expect workers to be exploited in millions of different ways, large and small, and this is still not a good hill to die on.)

[0] I (and many HNers) happen to live in one of the few US states where political retaliation by employers is actually banned, and while I broadly appreciate the sentiment, I'm not at all sure it's morally superior in the way you're trying to claim. Look at what a huge problem liberal protection of political speech caused in Citizens United, for example.


> Shouldn't a political debate be more about ideas than the people who are involved?

You don't need money to talk about ideas. The enormous sums poured into American campaigns are about something, but I'm pretty sure that something isn't the best way to run the country.

Give candidates the same amount of space to make the case for their position, like with ballot initiatives. Have them do it in writing - it makes for better decisionmaking, and it makes candidates more accountable. Maybe put these things on a leaflet that's mailed to voters, a publicly-administered one - charge the candidates at cost if you like, it's not going to be a big expense. That ought to be enough. The sound and the fury of modern political campaigns does not signify a better government.


> then let the lunatic fringe on their side do what comes naturally to them.

Sure. It's not explicitly about donors, but the fringe have no problems taking advantage of things like this.


Long story short, the Scott Walker recall petition was public, and people were targeted if they signed it. There's a good piece on NPR's This American Life about it.



That Scott Walker is in the office now means either 1) targeting isn't bad enough to not be able to win a governor race or 2) the story about targeting isn't credible enough - in other words, people discount it enough (not enough proof of acting) so that it doesn't matter.

Curious what would it be.


Justice Thomas's concurrence in Citizens United cited several examples:

http://www.law.cornell.edu/supct/pdf/08-205P.ZX1 [pdf]


Brendan Eich, would be CEO of Mozilla.


That sounds just like the guy I met at RailsConf in 2006. We were starting Kongregate and I saw Ezra's talk on Rails Deployment. It was amazing and after talking to him I decided to try to use Engineyard for Kongregate hosting. We were one of their first five customers and unfortunately the distributed filesystem didn't work well for us. We switched off to our own colo but Ezra helped us at every step of the way, long after it was clear we weren't coming back.

Such a loss.

Link describing the talk:



> You can't fight it. It's like fighting aging with plastic surgery.

It's more like fighting crime. Aging is an irreversible process that happens to one person. Crime and corruption are background processes that happen to societies.

You can fight it. You can't eliminate it, of course.

Here's a good book on the subject:



Crime too. If you look at what are most of the crimes that are committed in any given country, it quickly becomes obvious that those are mostly victimless crimes or crimes that are invoked by governments declaring something to be illegal (while it harms no one): like drugs being illegal provokes a lot of violence, gang culture etc. The only true systematic source of evil in any country is its government. Without it, you'd still have bad things happening, but it won't be on the same level.


Uh, violent crime exists. And it's worth fighting. Right? As is corruption? Or do you think we should give up on both?


What I'm saying is, governments foster violent crime by criminalizing many peaceful things. The best thing you can do to dramatically decrease violent crime rates is get rid of governments.


You can't get rid of governments though. People would spontaneously form states either to protect themselves, or to take advantage of the opportunity to set up protection rackets and tax others.


I find it amusing how people who dislike governments rarely move to failed states. You can easily move to an area without regulation or taxes but there not actually places you want to be.


A failed state doesn't mean absence of government. Similarly to how if you burn a church, it wouldn't make all the people in the village atheists.

What people who dislike governments can realistically do is not comply and ask for no permission. Don't pay taxes, use Bitcoin, ignore stupid laws, don't send children to government schools. Peacefully disobey.


Where? Rules instituted by force of arms (which you refer to as "regulations") and extortion backed by same (which you refer to as "taxes") are global. Short of war, Antarctica or establishing a seastead, you cannot escape them, period. And in the latter two cases, you stand a very high chance of simply inviting war at any rate.


That's a possibility - we've also thought about imposing a cap on spending and going after the first candidate to violate it.


It's a minor incentive, but honestly candidates mostly care about having enough money to get their message out, regardless of the source.


I'm not sure you do either. Think about the real-life examples here and decide whether what we're doing is in the same category:




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