And if they can't do that, they simply collude with a prosecutor who is bucking for high conviction rates to win a judgeship to railroad some innocent schlep by abusing the system, and then the "public' thinks the matter is settled and the pressure to actually find out truth goes away.
No, US cannot.
Not because there are no ways to do it.. there are plenty. It's a pure corruption issue. There is no political will to do *anything* to reign in the abuses of the corporate oligarchy. None. Because 99% of people in politics are completely bought and paid for by the giant corporations that make up that oligarchy. It's pointless and stupid to even ask the question.
Our "political leadership" does as it is bidden by their corporate masters, and pay no attention to what is best for the population. For the simple reason that it is impossible to build a functional democratic political system on top of an authoritarian economic system. Economic power beats political power in any endgame.
When "regulators" and "Industry insiders" play the "revolving door jobs game", no, there's no legitimate oversight ever.. and we do ourselves a disservice by pretending that the system "works" in any way. It doesn't.
What we need to do is figure out how to fix *that*, not blather about nonsense that ignores the functional realities.
There's also a *slight* slice of demographic that doesn't fit so neatly. For about 7 years, I was "that guy in the corner".. I was *waiting* for a serious Linux Gaming happening. I finally broke down and installed Win7 on a box just to be able to play a couple games I'd been waiting for *years* to see if they got a proper Linux port. I'm still waiting, really.. despite having a Windows gaming pc..
But besides being "That One Guy".. I know probably close to 100 people who have a console, but really don't want to *play* on consoles... ("PC Master Race" sort of thing).. but who also really really *hate* having to run MS products to get any kind of decent PC gaming experience.. They're like me, except I don't have a console, and don't want one either.
Their gaming is kind of.. grudgingly done. Now, I can't actually *prove* this.. but with the amount of b*tching I hear about both Microsoft and Consoles from them.. I'm fairly convinced that were they to find a honest to god "Linux Gaming Solution" that had the support of the AAA's..They'd not only switch to it, but *ALSO* increase their general expediture on games as a side effect.
So there may be at least some people who would increase their consumption simply due to being happier with the environment they consume in.. like someone ordering more at a restaurant because the decor or service is especially pleasant to them. I am one of those. Nothing would make me happier than to be able to say goodbye completely to MS again, and still be able to play awesome games. I can't do that on Linux yet. At least not the awesome games I want to play.
Now, if I could do that on Linux.. my last reservation about "going heavy gamer" goes away, and significantly more of my income would get routed that way because I'm not hesitant about getting f*cked by MS down the line.
Just a thought though.
Not explicitly dead.. just seriously endangered.
However.. I have a room with no windows in my basement.. and a lock upon the door. In that room, there is a comfy chair, and I can sit in that room, in perfect privacy, and read a book. It's quite nice.
Not exactly modern, perhaps.. but it is just as good a privacy as was available a century ago.
Privacy is perfectly findable "in this modern age" if one is willing to give up the trappings and BS of participating in our societal systems.
.. this whole issue isn't about "Net Neutrality" or any such abstract concept.
It's 100% about "Preventing Telecommunications Corporate F*ckery".
The average person has no idea what "Net Neutrality" really means, nor do they care. But untill you start calling it what it is.. "Keeping these abusive dickbags from wholesale raping the consumer, whoever that consumer happens to be", you will have hundreds of millions of people who will stand up behind that idea..
Because it's a very rare soul who *hasn't* been f*cked over by his telco, cable company, etc.. We *all* share that common, visceral experience or know someone personally who has.
No, we don't.
That's just what conservatives like to paint us as saying as a way to "demonize the enemy".
What some of us argue, at the very least, is that a largely autocratic economic system and a purportedly democratic political system are incompatible. If you have the former, and are attempting the latter, you will get the inevitable "government of oligarch ass-kissers" like we currently see in Washington DC. "For the people" becomes "Fuck the people".
The Progressives I know are not particular fans of "Big Government".. especailly governments as corrupt and incompentent and prone to abuses as ours.. They lobby for social justice, economic justice, educational opportunites, employment, political reform, environmental protections... You know.. the idea of the common people actually getting some kind of *value* for the taxes they pay government, and not just seeing it all get pissed into some billionaire's bank account.
Some of us view "Big Corporations" as "the enemy" because we see the massive abuses they facilitate, from poisoning the drinking water to empoverishment to political corruption. We see billions wasted giving tax breaks to insanely profitable mega-corporations because they have effectively *bought* Congress. We see massive and flagrant violations of law that destroy lives, cause economic hardship for millions, and essentially "skim off the top" of most transactions made anywhere in the world, and nothing get done to stop it.
A few, vocal, weak willed "progressive" puppets of the Corporate Oligarchs that run the Media Machine perhaps think "Big Government" is the answer... but no.. Most of us know we have to dig deeper to address our problems. Just like most Conservatives know there really *is* more to life than "Guns, Jesus, and Fuck those Immigrants!"
You can probably boil it down to "Don't put anything into your mouth that has a commercial" and be fairly close..
We just give up on this blatantly stupid notion of taking a small minority segment of the populace, setting them apart from that populace, arming them to the teeth, giving them vast discretionary powers and a state-sanctioned monopoly on violence, and brainwashing them to believe that they are the only force that prevents civilization from decaying into absolute anarchy and that those that aren't one of them are all potential threats and miscreants?
Because, you know.. look how well that's worked out so far....
When police are *members* of a community, engaged with the community, approachable by the community, and not *preying* on the community.. this sort of thing doesn't happen *nearly* as much. And that only happens when the police aren't militarized and conditioned to believe in the sanctity of that "thin blue line" above everything else..
Yeah, I'm sorry, but as a longtime D&D/AD&D player.. no. Just no.
Nothing WotC, ever. Hell, I'm still pissed about what Lorraine Williams did to Gary Gygax.. but the legendary TSR being sold to WotC.. the same asshats who almost completely *destroyed* the roleplaying community with that abomination Magic: The Gathering.. No, no, a thousand times no.
I still remember those dark days.. when my local gaming store went from having 2 *dozen* roleplaying games a week being played by joyous nerds with dice and miniatures in their back room... to having *2*.. which struggled for players and only the hardest of the die hards kept them alive..
I remember more and more shelf space being consumed by those damn cards, with less dice, less miniatures, less goodies, less rulebooks, and less actual *games*.. because they needed the space for *crates* of starter decks and booster packs...
I remember people losing their cars and apartments because they were spending all their money on those wretched cards... Because the payouts were so insane and they were addicted... I remember meeting a guy at GenCon in '94... who hitchiked there, with no money, no ticket.. but 6 Black Lotus cards.... and I remember him trading one for a ticket and a swank suite at a nice hotel right near the con.. while we sweated 6 to a room in some non-air-conditoned dorm that we'd scrimped and saved for.. I remember him leaving with nearly $1,500 in gaming stuff, $600 in his pocket, a first class plane ticket home, and he still had *3* of those blasted cards...
And then I remember seeing what WotC had done to my beloved D&D... the Legacy of TSR... and my heart was filled with black hate. I will never forget.. I will never forgive... and I sure as *hell* will never buy the "5th Edition".
Yes, I may have issues. No, I don't particularly care.
Ah yes, I fondly remember teachers requiring multiple sources for claims made in a paper.. to prevent errors and all that.. and then getting pissed as hell when you used the same method to find errors in the "single source" textbook they were trying to pass off as "truth." They *really* hated it when you pointed out that they weren't using multiple sources to back the ideas they presented either...
I suppose, in hindsight, I might have been one of those "difficult" students...
Um, just for the sake of discourse.. it's not just in the case of "religious creation" that everything was created...
I mean, when two hydrogen atoms fuse into a helium atom in the core of a start, the helium atom is "created" by nuclear fusion. It doesn't necessitate the involvement of some spooky incompetant invisible father figure in the clouds entering into the picture at all.
The creation of any new thing doesn't explicitly require the presence of consciousness.. just a process by which some form of transformation can occur. Even a self-ordering system kind has to "Create" the order we will eventually see in it.
Hi there. Atypical sometimes Slashdotter here. I don't think that *all* cops are out to get me, but of the few I've interacted with, 90% of them have been absolute self-absorbed jackasses who think that anybody who isn't wearing a badge and a uniform is "the enemy" until another member of their little "sanctioned street gang" informs them otherwise.
I seriously have less to fear from the *actual* gangbangers, drug dealers, and criminal miscreants in my town than I do from the police, and I'm not part of the "criminal element." I've had firearms stuck in my face by police twice, and never once from a "criminal" thug. An no, in neither situation were weapons present (other than the officers), nor was the officer in a tactically disadvantageous position (quite the opposite), nor was any *remote* threat present to the officer's safety, or anyone else's.
Among my friends, I have seen more damage done to their persons, lives, and property by police than by "criminals" by a factor of 5. In my own life, it's a factor of 2, because I don't particularly go anywhere or do much of anything, and I avoid law enforcement like the *plague*... (to the extent that I refuse to leave the house on any days or go to any locations where high law enforcement presence is likely to be found.)
I will not call police for any reason. I'll either deal with the issue myself, or I'll just suffer the loss and go about my day. I've never once personally witness a case where a situation was improved by the presence of a "law enforcement officer" on seen, but I've seen many cases where it was made considerably worse for the victim.
So, in a nutshell, f**k the police. I want nothing to do with a gang of powertripping thugs who possess a societally granted monopoly on acceptable violence and who are conditioned to view policing as a "war" in which average citizens are either "enemies" or "enemies we don't know about yet." I don't care if a few of them are decent human beings. I'll stick with the thugs and gangbangers and drug dealers and thieves, because they're more reliable and reasonable.. And you can occasionally defeat them.
What on earth makes you claim that our current system is "Capitalist"? By my reckoning, we've been "post-capitalist" since the giant "Debt capacity=wealth" fraud instigated in the 1970's..
Please forgive the abuse of the English language employed by my countrymen. The vast majority of them are ignorant to a great many things, having been raised primarily on a diet of Cold War propagada during their formative years, and a steady diet of corporatist propaganda since. Perhaps one in a thousand has any idea what Adam Smith actually wrote, fewer still the actual ideas of Marx, or Lenin, etc. We also have no idea what the word "liberal" actually means to the rest of the world, because we confuse "conservative" with "psychotic militant reactionary."
An Embarrassed American.
I seriously have to wonder about Cat's decision there. If it weren't for the high likelihood of the job being given to Settingsgaard as a reward for "looking the other way" when some Cat Exec's kid (or the Exec themself) got caught with hookers and blow at some downtown hotel, I'd think they were insane.
No well-heeled global corporation would go hiring for a "security professional" at the Peoria Police Department, primarily because "encouraging lazy acts of random thuggery" and "complete failure to do your job except for covering your ass by collusion with the media" aren't exactly traits that one wants to encourage in one's security department..
Yes, I've had the misfortune of living in Peoria most of my life, and yes, the PPD *are* that bad. When you see cops, prosecutors, and judges all snorting coke together in the back of the Judge's Chamber (bar) downtown, you know your city is rotten to the core.