[sdiy] Batz (rant)

metasonix at earthlink.net metasonix at earthlink.net
Thu Jun 13 05:53:03 CEST 2002

>they were showing all this stuff going into land-fill or to be 
>scrapped for raw materials. Pallet loads of brand new monitors.  pile of 
>older IBM notebooks, at least P100s if not P266s, dumped in a pile out in 
>the rain and mud. 

Dear boy, you are now finding out the true evil of corporate megalopoly.

Back in the 1920s, radio manufacturers found themselves competing against
last year's old radio sets, which were far cheaper used than new.
(Remember, a radio in 1925 cost the consumer $250--that was three month's
The dealers and manufacturers became so incensed, they DEMANDED that
consumers buying new radio sets had to turn their old sets in for "disposal".
And once a year, many dealers would make BONFIRES out of the old radios.
They invited the local press, even had barbeques--meat cooked over the 
flames of old RCA Radiolas. (Bet it made the meat taste tangier. Yum.)
The manufacturers openly encouraged this, and even gave dealers rebates
based on how many radio chassis they burned (or destroyed by other means).
I have seen many old issues of the US magazine RADIO NEWS, in which they
often reported on the latest "radio bonfire festival". Usually dealers in the
East Coast and Midwest held the bonfires in November thru Christmas--
right after the new models were introduced each September. You never hear
antique radio collectors talk about this stuff, it's embarrassing, apparently.

(Then came the Depression, and the US radio industry went from 250 
manufacturers to 17....

Just substitute "personal computer" for "radio". Things really don't change.

This is nothing, you should see all the stuff the big American
national laboratories buy, then sell off the next year in their
surplus auctions--without ever using it. They have to--their
annual budgets are "use or lose". I've been to the
Sandia and Los Alamos auctions. You see things like pallets of
brand-new office furniture that had been left out in the weather.
And those are not small auctions--imagine a 10-acre fenced lot, 
filled with pallets. Every month.

In 1993 Los Alamos put out a complete CDC Cyber 135 supercomputer,
with all manuals, software and peripherals. It used 100k ECL chips
running way past their maximum ratings, pressed against cold-plates
in which circulated freon refrigerant. They had just sawed off
the cables going in and out, and thrown the cabinets onto pallets.
The whole thing ended up selling to a surplus dealer for $2000. 
I saw this happen.

>already bought and sold or the fact that kids are becoming more and more 
>exposed to Microsoft's Nemesis. It's funny to watch a corporate giant 
>dancing around like it's about to wet it self.

You have no idea. There is a rumor that Gates is trying to get 
his congressman to introduce a bill that would make open-source
software illegal for any government or commercial use.

>my surprise when I discover that the few local recyclers who do this stuff, 
>are actually charging around new price for bits that were basically thrown 
>at them. Surely this is not how it should be. Why would I buy a recovered 
>monitor  for 250 when I could buy a brand new one for 260? 

Sad to say, this is not surprising. I have heard many times that Aussie
businessmen are some of the world's most ruthless (and, imo, foolish).
At Svetlana we had the same problem--the Australian customers
were some of the worst--always screwing up paperwork, not paying bills,
lying about receiving shipments (then demanding a replacement shipment), 
bitching about quality and prices, etc. etc. 
What is it, the isolation driving them nuts? Maybe the summer heat?
Eating kangaroo burgers?

I bet many list members have old PCs sitting around..........
Just think, ship them to Batz in Australia, and you won't have
to take the stuff to the local recycler or the landfill, 
only to have them turn you away....Batz will get "rid" of it for you...

E. Barbour

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