You know, this sounds a lot like a problem with another "independent" 4-letter government agency having financial difficulties...
"Fundamentalist" christianity is actually very peaceful.
Matthew, Chapter 10 (NIV), Jesus commanding the Twelve Apostles to spread the word about the Kingdom of Heaven:
16 "I am sending you out like sheep among wolves. Therefore be as shrewd as snakes and as innocent as doves.
21 "Brother will betray brother to death, and a father his child; children will rebel against their parents and have them put to death.
34 "Do not suppose that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I did not come to bring peace, but a sword.
35 For I have come to turn "'a man against his father, a daughter against her mother, a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law--
36 a man's enemies will be the members of his own household.'
Sure, these days Fundamentalist Christians are relatively peaceful, having found that social pressure and legislation is easier and safer than violence, but any who want to can easily find verses to support their own holy war, some from Jesus himself.
When I started at an engineering university, part of our "orientation" week (before classes actually began) included a required math test to see which math class we would start out in. Most did the usual Calc I, some did well enough to jump straight to Calc II, and unfortunately large number had to take a Remedial Math class before moving on to Calc I.
Could the same be done for basic computer science courses?
It also works against small inventors; the minute they stop making something a large company will ramp up production and claim the smaller company/person forfeited patent protection. If they were forced to stop making it due to supply issues, which could be controlled by the larger company, they become easy picking.
If you say "completely stop" then the company will maintain an extremely small line that makes one pill/day and sells it to an employee or just throws it away. If you say a minimum number then it could push out small players. Giving a delay of X days has the same problem. I don't know how you'd make a rule that wouldn't have loopholes so large that the big companies just walk right through them.
I support the idea, but a basic rule/law won't work. Rather, a party that can show a vested interest--such as a patent troll target or a competing manufacturer--should be able to apply to a patent judge for invalidation of a patent due to lack of use after a minimum time since the patent was granted has passed. Require a wait of, say, a year so someone can't be awarded a patent and then the next day have to defend their low manufacturing in court.
The judge could then look at multiple factors in deciding whether or not to invalidate, including:
- size of company vs size of output
- size of demand
- importance of patent
- reliance of company on producing patented item
The judge could also rule that manufacturing has to increase a certain amount by a certain date, or the patent is invalid. The company whose patent is being reviewed could present evidence of supply tampering, extraordinary events (warehouse caught on fire, sudden regional instability where the product is manufactured, etc.), or other things that would affect production that would allow them to keep the patent.
Not that this lacks its own pratfalls, but looking at "abandoned" patents on a case-by-case basis is better than trying to write some generic law. Plus, most companies that would have their patent invalidated by a law would fight it in court anyway, so this just fast-tracks the process.
A bit OT, but you reminded me of a similar claim by Kate Mulgrew (aka The Worst Captain) over the geocentrist documentary The Principle.
Not only is the vast majority worthless (though various people might disagree on what qualifies as worthless), much of it is *repeated* worthlessness. There are these seemingly-large network of sites whose only purpose is to take content from other places and re-post it. Most use WordPress or something similar, and surround it with ads (I call these "tri-ad" sites). Not a single lick of original content. Then they go and infest StumbleUpon's Humor category; they use multiple domain names to get around the ability of users to block a domain.
I would be extremely happy for a web where most of the content comes form subscriptions; my only problem is that micro-payments never really took off, and there are some sites I would happily pay 50c/visit for but not $5/mo.
What other country has the power and will? Not the UN, since the US is a permanent member of the security council and gets a veto on anything. (Plus, all they would do is send a strongly-worded Resolution.)
What American with the power to act has the will? Both parties are more-or-less happy with the various powers built up by the federal government over the past century; while they will cry to the media about it, neither party will take serious action to remove any of the powers or charge someone (standing or retired) because they don't want to set precedent against their future, more powerful self. (Most politicians in Congress suffer from a form of "Temporarily Embarrassed Millionaire", which I call "Temporarily Embarrassed President".)
Certainly, no action will be taken by American people in general. Near 2/3 of those who could have done something this past election instead did nothing. Of the 1/3 that did vote, a majority of them (district/state wise, if not raw voter wise) decided the "other" guys would somehow fix things. 90%+ of the rest stuck with our two party system, as though "their" guys had done a superb job.
The uncertainty comes from what you mean by "protect citizens".
It doesn't even have to be that specific: the uncertainty can come from what you mean by "citizens". At one point in our nation's history there were humans who were born and lived here but not regarded as "citizens", and it could well happen again. By saying that the government is there to protect "citizens", and the government gets to define "citizens", a loophole is created. So even if "protecting citizens" was a valid, generic reason (and I agree with you, it is not), it's still problematic.
This is why many of our founding documents refer to "the people" in many places rather than "countrymen" or "citizens".
What's more, I believe that there have been studies showing that a gentle hand will get better results than a firm first. If you can show the person that they have a lot to gain, rather than something to lose, and treat them nice they are far more likely to divulge information (be it by slipping up or by confessing). Plus, the propaganda probably makes us out to be hellspawn demons, so if we turn out to be quite pleasant people after we capture them it will make them question other things they've been told about what they are doing.
Aggression puts people on the defensive, so they're more likely to fight against whatever it is you want to accomplish.
Can't back these words right now, though, as the Google is flooded with posts about the CIA torture reveal and it's harder to look for relevant information.
Thankfully, this looks to be an implementation issue and not a protocol issue like SSL had. From the blog of the folks who run that SSL test:
As problems go, this one should be easy to fix. [...] [E]ven though TLS is very strict about how its padding is formatted, it turns out that some TLS implementations omit to check the padding structure after decryption. Such implementations are vulnerable to the POODLE attack even with TLS. [...] According to our most recent SSL Pulse scan (which hasn’t been published yet), about 10% of the servers are vulnerable to the POODLE attack against TLS.
Suspecting and Knowing are 2 different things.
Not in this case. While we weren't aware of the extent of their torture ("brutal/enhanced interrogation" my ass, it's torture), we did know they were doing it (at least since 2010, but perhaps earlier). They (namely Dick Cheney, but others as well) just played it off as "enhanced interrogation", as though they were Jedis hand-waving the American public.
Sadly, it seems that worked. Despite the atrocities that are Guantanamo and waterboarding, there were only a few (very loud) voices calling for charges against those who authorized them. Sure, some guys got roped in when the Guantanamo thing first broke, but the facility is still up and running. And, sadly, I doubt anyone will be taken to task over this; maybe some low-level nobodies in an attempt to placate the few angry mobs, but no one that actually made decisions.
It's kind of like the whole NSA thing. We had bits and pieces, knowing enough to know that they were doing some sort of illegal data gathering, but until the Snowden documents didn't know the details or scope of what they were doing.
That gave me some hope for the world.
Your hope comes easier than mine, then. That the officers were okay with sessions in the first place is highly disturbing to me, and only "some"/"several" were actually disturbed after it happened for a few days.
Now cue scores of sexist, white-knight "do-gooders" who will say things like "sex-work endangers women" and other sexist statements that treat women like children.
Building off your statement, which I agree with: (American) Football purposefully endangers men, having them slam against each other at higher-than-normal velocities, and yet, despite many recent medical revelations, there's no large trumpeting call to shut the whole thing down.
The only difference between football and prostitution is how they're using their bodies for entertainment. The first is done for physical competition for a public audience; the second is physical excitement amongst private participants. The only real problem with the difference, as far as I can tell, is America's very reserved view of sex.
In addition, legalization has brought down the dangerous aspects of many things. Ending alcohol prohibition severely hurt the mafia. The slow legalization/decriminalization of marijuana appears to be having the same affect on many gangs. Legalizing abortion made a botched or fatal operation extremely rare (AFAIK). If there's a case where legalizing something made it more dangerous, I'm not aware of it. While I don't have data to back me up, I can only assume that legalizing prostitution would be good for prostitutes:
1) Keeping it illegal keeps it in the shadows, so it's hard to see things that are actually bad happening (abuse, theft)
2) Making it legal allows for regulation, so that prostitutes have to receive regular checks for STDs and some health department can make sure the places of business are sanitary and the prostitutes not abused
3) Making it legal might help lower the spread of various STDs; part of it is requiring regular checks of prostitutes, and larger brothels might be able to get scientists to develop a quick and fairly reliable test for various STDs that clients have to use before being allowed in
Also, while not as popular, there are male prostitutes so this helps them as well.
Going quite a bit off topic here, but I'll bite:
Build a border that can be enforced
I hope you're not talking about building a wall. A wall is one of those ideas that seems pleasant, simple, and realistic at a quick glance, but when you get into details it starts to break down. Even the Great Wall of China failed many times.
Rather than trying to go back to Isolationist policies, we should be looking at A) why they come here, and B) what steps we can take to diminish A. In the long run, removing their need/desire to come to America illegally will have far more benefit for everyone than simply trying to hide the problem behind a chain-link fence.
A isn't easy; a lot of people will claim "because America is the greatest country in the world!" Except we aren't turning back a tide of Canadians at our northern border, so far as I'm aware, meaning either America and Canada are roughly equivalent in greatness or there are other reasons that Mexicans are risking quite a bit to come to the U.S. While I'm no expert on Hispanic relations, it seems to me that what is happening is not so much Mexicans wanting to come to the US, but Mexicans wanting to leave Mexico and the US being the most natural choice. (I'm not aware of Guatemala offering a lot, and in fact Mexico is facing its own illegal immigrant problem with Guatemalans)
The main cause that I'm aware of is the Mexican Cartels, who mainly use drugs as their source of revenue. The surging movement in America to legalize weed is having a growing impact on that. They still have crack and heroine, of course, but these are far more destructive drugs that will result in fewer return users.
There are likely other other factors, such as poverty, especially in the border towns (driving along the highway by the border in El Paso, TX gives you an eerie comparison between Juarez and El Paso, especially when you consider that much of the El Paso side is still lower class.) Government corruption might be a factor.
For B, I already mentioned the legalizing of weed in America. If we can change the discussion of our "War on Drugs" from punishment to rehabilitation, we could lower the demand for drugs from Mexico (and other countries dealing with the same thing) even further.
For poverty, I don't have a good plan. But let's consider that fence again. It could cost $22.4 Billion to build (though the full cost is hard to figure out, apparently). A quick search tells me that the estimated population amongst the six Mexican border states was 12,246,99... in 1990. So that number's a bit old, we'll bump it up to 20M (another source says 24M by 2020, but that's for both sides of the border.) With about 27.9% being kids, that's about 14M adults, giving us $1600/Mexican adult (more, actually, as the "kids" only includes up to age 14). The average yearly income for Mexico is about $13K, so that's significant but not huge.
What if, instead of spending that money on the border, we use it to improve the cities on the Mexican side of the border? They would give at least a small economical boost, though short-term, and while improving those cities we could have US law enforcement work with Mexican law enforcement to further route the gangs. This isn't without risk, of course, and a lot of people would like to see that 22.4 Billion invested in our own country through either education or infrastructure, but if we're talking about ways to fix the "problem" of illegal immigrants then I believe it will be far more useful to use money appropriated for such a task in that capacity.
Valve is a slumbering behemoth. They seem to have dropped any big push for SteamOS (as the goal was to loosen Microsoft's control through their App Store, and this appears to have been successful), but if they really wanted to brute force it they would have a lot of power to bring to bear, in terms of both capital and support. The MAFIAA has far more capital and legal resources, but Valve wouldn't go down without giving them a large bruising and, perhaps, getting some victories that weaken the copyright cases the music labels want to bring against smaller entities.
And if they needed quick cash, all they have to do is release Half Life 3. It could be nothing more than Goat Simulator with Gordon Freeman instead of a Goat, and the frenzy caused by releasing it would give them a large boost. A real, actual Half Life 3 would probably double whatever they have for a war chest.
Despite the sale price, Twitch is a relatively small player and easier to push around. Being bought by Amazon only makes this worse, as it gives media companies some extra leverage against the sales giant by saying they'll up the ante on Twitch DMCA filings if Amazon doesn't agree to better terms for the media companies.
On a TF2 server I regularly play on (I only play on other servers if it's empty or on a map I hate), we have about 40-50 regulars that are there at least once a week, if not multiple nights, for many hours. One of these was a guy who was usually getting on at least one person's nerves every night, but he's been absent for a few weeks, likely just busy. In the meantime we have a new person who has taken on the same role. He's a dick, but has some intelligence and is never a *huge* dick (at worst one or two people will try to votekick, but most who find him annoying have just muted him.)
Last week one of the old regulars, also an admin on the server, was on at the same time and was telling the new person that the admin appreciated his presence, because there was universal annoyance, at best, amongst the server population that helped bind them together. It was something like a common cause, but replacing productivity with hate. While it was certainly intended to be a riff on the dick, there was some truth to what the admin was saying.
Perhaps that's what Bennett is to us. The whole Beta thing has really died down (or I've willfully ignored it), and that was a very uniting aspect of millions of
A: "Hey fuck you ignorant conservative"
B: "No fuck you, lazy liberal"
A: "Ah man, it's another Bennett article. I hate that guy's drivel."
B: "Oh, really? Me, too. Wish I could ignore all of his articles."
A: "Heh, yeah. So, hey, about earlier..."