Re: Plural 'United States' not unheard of domestically...
The issue there is the definite article. In context, as an American, "These United States" is a plural, and "have" would make sense in context. It's a bit grandiose, but acceptable.
"The United States", with the singular article, should be followed with "has", not "have", as a mater of normal American English conjugation.
Here's the thing, and this isn't normal English, as far as I can remember, with "these", the emphasis is on "states" as separate entities, with "the", the term "United States" is effectively a single, and singular, propper noun.
It's a mistake that most Americans are unlikely to make, because the shifting emphasis on States as a plural and United as a single entity is a familiar idiomatic anomaly.
To a non-American it's an arbitrary mess without any real logic backing it up.
Re: Re: Here we go again, distancing evil NSA from friendly Google.
Most entertaining conspiracy theory I've heard in the last five hours... of course the only OTHER conspiracy theory I've run across today involved the Illuminati... so the competition isn't really what you'd call fierce.
There's also the part where the DoJ was claiming that the records were unavailable. While I'm not expecting every DoJ schmuck to know about Prism's records, it could do a real number on their claims that they didn't the evidence didn't exist.
Given that the FBI's passed intelligence to companies in the recent past, it wouldn't surprise me if "in the interests of maintaining American influence", that the CIA and NSA had in fact deliberately passed information to Corporate America. That said, you're probably 100% right about exactly how they passed intell.
The money laundering comments are somewhat warranted, though. While anyone can run a business into the ground as long as the money holds out. People are responding to the sense that there's something really off about this situation.
There's just enough evidence to make the laundering suggestion plausible. Is it a nice thing to do? No, but I think in this case we're past that.
I'm sorry, can I just say, lay off the lawyers. At least as a whole? I mean, I get the lawyer jokes, and general distaste when it comes to attorneys, particularly the ones that get media attention...
But, for every John Steele, or Charles Carrion, or Joseph Rakofsky, there are as many as one, to one and a half laywers who aren't trying to figure out how to gain cosmic power through bathing in the blood of virgins. Well, you know, yet.
If EA was smart, they wouldn't have tried always on DRM again after Spore... or after seeing Ubisoft take it on the chin over and over because of their DRM. They might have looked at UBIsoft's DDOS attacks, and said, "no, this isn't really a good idea", and yet, here we are again.
Yeah, San Andreas has you working for either the CIA, or some covert ops spookworks at one point. GTA4 has some plotline with someone in the DoJ, though I never finished either game. I'm not sure about the rest of the series.
Well, Mass Effect 3 wasn't released on Steam, for one thing, so asking them for a refund would be... a little weird.
And, yeah, there were some people asking for refunds, over it, or threatening to boycott EA/Bioware/Origin/whatever as a result.
That said, it didn't reach the same levels as this one did. In large part because ME3 (mostly) the game it claimed to be. There were some really idiotic or flat out misleading statements in the lead up and advertising, but nothing quite like what we had with War Z.
The game claimed to have 100 player servers, when it launched with server population caps of 50, it claimed to have multiple maps ranging from 100 - 400 square km each. It shipped with one, that they claimed was 100 square km, but, from people actually examining it, it looks like it's most likely a little under 10. It claimed to have private servers, that wasn't functional. It claimed to have a skill system, that didn't exist at all. (I know the article covered these, but still.)
To put this in perspective, with Mass Effect 3, the best analogy would be if all the stuff that was on the box was still there, but the game itself contained only what we saw in the demo.
Rather hilariously, after the game went on sale on Steam as a "foundational release", there were still notifications in game saying that features were still part of an alpha state, and would be subject to change.
As much as I loathe what Bioware did with ME3, they did deliver the game they said they would. It was just, like all writing from Bioware, terminally idiotic.