Applying common sense to what you read

As has been mentioned many times on the blogs already, The Apple v. Apple lawsuit ended in favor of Apple Computer.

And to everyone who claimed that that Apple Corps were sure to win, I’d like to point out more of us need to do a common sense parse of the news we read.

Look, if Apple Computer actually expected to lose this lawsuit do you think they would have merged their countersuit in California (home turf) into the one in Great Britain (enemy turf)? Did you miss the part where Apple didn’t “lose” the last two lawsuits, but settled? That because they were settled, people could only deduce the implications of the settlement and nobody besides the two Apples and the judge actually could actually be qualified to make a ruling?

Go reread my original take on this. Notice the deduction by Business Week on the public court filings: “…strongly implies that Apple Corps agreed to allow Apple to pursue digital music initiatives, but not package, sell, or distribute any physical music materials such as CDs.” and compare it to this selection from the full decision:

Accordingly, none of those factors, taken separately, is in my view a breach of the [The 1991 Settlement Agreement and the Trade Mark Agreement]…The overall impression is, in my view, no different from the impression created by each of the separate parts. The overall impression is one of a store which is selling (transmitting) recordings (data), puffing its services and wares and offering some enticing products.

So have a good chortle when you read this (I know I have):

Neil Aspinall, manager of Apple Corps, plans to appeal the ruling. According to the Wall Street Journal, he commented “We felt that during the course of the trial we clearly demonstrated just how extensively Apple Computer has broken the agreement.”

Yeah, Neil, because you are impartial and don’t have an vested interest in the outcome I’m supposed to believe you. Appeal the Apple all you want, you aren’t going to get another slice of it. (Pardon the puns.)

Parsing the news

My point is, from the actions of Apple Computer, it didn’t take a brainiac to place odds on the outcome. Nor is it much of a stretch to figure out where the appeal decision is going to fall. And yet these so-called news people are such “playah-hatah”s that they have this strange need to “balance” facts with supposition and punditry.

  • Fact: Apple Corps Lost.
  • Punditry: Apple Corps is going to appeal (and win) because Apple Computer’s evilness was aptly demonstrated during the trial.

Apple-hater’s game on! (Time to lose another one.)

Being manipulated

This reminded me of the the Pepsi hoax I mentioned to people on the way back from work today. Nobody in the car had heard of it even though it had occurred as recently as 1993. And yet, read about it and compare it to the Wendy’s finger in the chili thing that occurred last year.

Use your brain! How could someone have stuck syringes in so many cans of so many pepsis whizzing by at god knows how fast in so many bottlers around the country.

If you could remember all the incidences and news reports around the country of people finding a syringe. As my mom pointed out, “they seemed so honest and normal” but you couldn’t find a more dishonest set of people. These people, in order to line their own pockets or get media attention to their pathetic lives, made fallacious claims that cost Pepsi and this country a lot of money and worry. (To understand the fear you must know that Tylenol had been tampered with cyanide in the early 80’s.)

My friends in the car found these stories incredible. Some noted how strange it is in America, we, including themselves, are so trusting of what the media tells us. When they lived in China, for instance, they were naturally suspicious of the media. (Like in the SARS outbreak news black out.)

Halloween poisoning

At lunch last November, I got into a polite argument with someone at work about her child’s halloweening. She mentioned that she went trick-or-treating with her child but exchanged the candy the child got with some candy of her own.

I said, “That’s fine and I compliment you for wanting to product your child, but you realize that that action is irrational.”

“No, it’s not,” she said seriously, “people stick razor blades and poison in those things.” (Obviously she was in fear that when I did have kids I’d be so cavalier with their candy-eating habits.)

“Yeah, I heard the same stuff growing up when I was a kid. But do you think anyone would poison someone they don’t know? Knowing the likelihood of getting caught? Knowing that they would be killing a child? Knowing the punishment for that sort of thing? If it actually happened [I wanted to say, “to a pretty white girl” here but I held my tongue], it would be a media sensation! They’d be screaming this stuff from the mountaintops. Right wing pundits and left wing moonbats would be up in arms.”

“No, there are a lot of crazies out there. Just the other day, there was this news program about this…”

Since she was obviously beyond reason, I stopped listening. I spent the rest of the time wondering this rumor was so powerful some actuary for the candy industry could tell me how much extra money is spent double purchases of candy based just on the spread of this rumor.

But just in case you need facts to back up what common sense should tell you, I simply point you to the ever-helpful Snopes urban legends FAQ on halloween poisoning and razor blades.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.