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Comment: Re:I just got back from a deployment to Afghanista (Score 5, Interesting) 650

by Sir.Cracked (#39823823) Attached to: WW2 Vet Sent 300,000 Pirated DVDs To Troops In Iraq, Afghanistan

I was a Comm troop deployed to an airbase in Pakistan in 2004. While there, the OIC for the Comm flight (Officer in Charge of all communications) thought it would be a brilliant idea to order the "morale" servers shut down. These were essentially just file servers that people had dumped music and movies to as they cycled through, and were pretty much the only access to entertainment we had at a rather isolated base. He was on a kick for going to JAG or IA, and figured shutting down some copyright infringement would be a good point for his transfer and for his oak leaves. What actually happened was even the base commander was pissed, and at a commander's call a couple days later, (aka an official, in uniform, at attention kind of meeting), when he got up to speak, he was booed. Thinking back on it still shocks me to this day. If a single airman ever booed an officer in a commanders call, there'd be UCMJ action, no question. But an entire base of airmen spontaneously and unanimously booed him. It would be akin to the CIO getting booed at a shareholder meeting or press conference, where the board can legally imprison any attendee they care to.

(In the end he stood up and promised a "legal" solution to the problem would be deployed within 24 hours. Myself and my co-server types looked at each other, decided he was talking out of his ass, and just turned the regular servers back on at the appointed time).

Comment: Re:Upgrades. (Score 1) 212

by Sir.Cracked (#35599056) Attached to: Air Force Supercomputer Made From PS3's

The problem with your little scheme is this bit:

"and you can increase the price per unit because you can no longer expect to recoup your losses on game software purchases."

And that's where you hit a problem. Selling something to the government at a higher rate than what you sell it at to the general public, or, really anyone else, is itself illegal, and will get your company into a mess of trouble. You're right that they could argue that it's not the same, bla bla bla, but try getting a jury to agree that the military, aka, the government, aka, the taxpayer, aka THEM, should pay MORE for a version with Fewer features, well, Best of luck with that.

And given that this "version" will have been made specifically for the military, it's going to look an AMAZING amount like them trying to overcharge and and defraud the government. This would be a huge liability for Sony, for little gain, and open a distracting front into a market they've never expressed an interest in aside from a few "Gee whiz, look what our game console can do" PR pieces.

Comment: Re:Scope (Score 1) 745

by Sir.Cracked (#32252076) Attached to: US Supreme Court Upholds Indefinite Confinement

It's even less scary than you think. They weren't deciding any Due Process issue at all. Don't just read about it. Read the decision. This is not a Due Process decision.
  From the decision:
 

The District Court, accepting two of the respondents'
claims, granted their motion to dismiss. It agreed with
respondents that the Constitution requires proof beyond a
reasonable doubt, id., at 551-559 (citing In re Winship,
397 U. S. 358 (1970)), and it agreed that, in enacting the
statute, Congress exceeded its Article I legislative powers,
507 F. Supp. 2d, at 530-551. On appeal, the Court of
Appeals for the Fourth Circuit upheld the dismissal on
this latter, legislative-power ground. 551 F. 3d 274, 278-
284 (2009). It did not decide the standard-of-proof question, nor did it address any of respondents' other constitutional challenges. Id., at 276, n. 1.
The Government sought certiorari, and we granted its
request, limited to the question of Congress' authority
under Art. I, 8 of the Constitution.

 

The question presented is whether the Necessary and
Proper Clause, Art. I, 8, cl. 18, grants Congress authority
sufficient to enact the statute before us. In resolving that
question, we assume, but we do not decide, that other
provisions of the Constitution--such as the Due Process
Clause--do not prohibit civil commitment in these circumstances.
Cf. Hendricks, 521 U. S. 346; Addington v. Texas,
441 U. S. 418 (1979). In other words, we assume for argument's
sake that the Federal Constitution would permit
a State to enact this statute, and we ask solely whether
the Federal Government, exercising its enumerated powers,
may enact such a statute as well. On that assumption,
we conclude that the Constitution grants Congress
legislative power sufficient to enact 4248.

So, the issue of due process, as well as a couple other constitutional issues raised were never reached. This is based on the assumption that this is within state power to do. That assumption now needs to be challenged.

Comment: Re:Unbelieveable (Score 2, Informative) 745

by Sir.Cracked (#32252004) Attached to: US Supreme Court Upholds Indefinite Confinement
Read the decision. This is not a Due Process decision.
From the decision:

The District Court, accepting two of the respondents' claims, granted their motion to dismiss. It agreed with respondents that the Constitution requires proof beyond a reasonable doubt, id., at 551-559 (citing In re Winship, 397 U. S. 358 (1970)), and it agreed that, in enacting the statute, Congress exceeded its Article I legislative powers, 507 F. Supp. 2d, at 530-551. On appeal, the Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit upheld the dismissal on this latter, legislative-power ground. 551 F. 3d 274, 278- 284 (2009). It did not decide the standard-of-proof question, nor did it address any of respondents' other constitutional challenges. Id., at 276, n. 1. The Government sought certiorari, and we granted its request, limited to the question of Congress' authority under Art. I, 8 of the Constitution.

So, the issue of due process, as well as a couple other constitutional issues raised were never reached. They need to reengage on these other constitutional challenges.

Government

+ - Rough Justice for Terry Childs->

Submitted by
snydeq
snydeq writes "Deep End's Paul Venezia sees significant negative ramifications for IT admins in the wake of yesterday's guilty verdict for Terry Childs on a count of 'denial of serivce.' Assuming the verdict is correct, Venezia writes, 'shouldn't the letter of the law be applied to other "denial of service" problems caused by the city while they pursued this case? In particular, to the person or persons who released hundreds passwords in public court filings in 2008 for causing a denial of service for the city's widespread VPN services? After all, once the story broke that a large list of usernames and passwords had been released to the public, the city had to take down its VPN services for days while they reset every password and communicated those changes to the users.' Worse, if upheld on appeal, the verdict puts a vast number of IT admins at risk. 'There are suddenly thousands of IT workers all over the country that are now guilty of this crime in a vast number of ways. If the letter of the law is what convicted Terry Childs, then the law is simply wrong.'"
Link to Original Source

Comment: Re:Perspective from a Juror on this Case (Score 2, Insightful) 982

by Sir.Cracked (#32015248) Attached to: Terry Childs Found Guilty

While jury service is commendable, you sir should be ashamed of what you've done. This guy was put in a no-win situation, one which YOU YOURSELF could someday face. To equate what he did with felony computer tampering puts us all one bad situation away from being felons, damned if we do and damned if we don't. Juries are there to ask the tough questions, to make sure laws squash people who don't deserve it. One quote from the article describes Mr Childs as "egotistical and paranoid". Well, you'd better lock a lot of us up then, because when you hold heightened responsibility and are tasked with guarding that system, that's what you're actions are going to look like.

You state you "felt terrible" about the verdict. If that's true, then you made the wrong decision. And you've made life more dangerous for all network and systems professionals.

Comment: Re:Don't take candy from the government (Score 1) 941

by Sir.Cracked (#31190534) Attached to: PA School Spied On Students Via School-Issued Laptop Webcams

"Public school employees are government employees. Therefore they are subject to every restriction that a police officer would be subject to with respect to dealing with citizens."

Unfortunately no. This case among many others... http://scotuswiki.com/index.php?title=Safford_United_School_District
Among other things, the requirements for searches is much lower, no warrant requirements, etc.

Government

California Continues To Push For Violent Game Legislation 167

Posted by Soulskill
from the if-at-first-you-don't-succeed,-you're-probably-california dept.
Back in February, the US Court of Appeals shot down a California law that banned the sale or rental of violent video games to minors. Shortly thereafter, State Senator Leland Yee petitioned the US Supreme Court to review the case. Now, along with California's Psychiatric and Psychological Associations, Yee has filed an amicus curiae brief with Court that elaborates on the reasoning behind the law. Within the brief (PDF) are some interesting quotes: "Parents can read a book, watch a movie or listen to a CD to discern if it is appropriate for their child. These violent video games, on the other hand, can contain up to 800 hours of footage with the most atrocious content often reserved for the highest levels and can be accessed only by advanced players after hours upon hours of progressive mastery. ... Notably, extended play has been observed to depress activity in the frontal cortex of the brain which controls executive thought and function, produces intentionality and the ability to plan sequences of action, and is the seat of self-reflection, discipline and self-control." The video game industry has filed its own amicus brief to dispute Yee's claims.

Comment: Re:Sorry, but Schools DO have Totalitarian control (Score 4, Informative) 420

by Sir.Cracked (#27648367) Attached to: Worst Censorware Blocks Cannot Be Fixed

The case of interest here would be Tinker Vs. Des Moines. Decided by the Supreme Court in 1969, It held that while the school had a compelling interest in curtailing certain rights that would otherwise be unacceptable violations of certain civil liberties, (in this case the first amendment, though the decision seems to apply to others) speech that was non-disruptive to the school environment could not be denied.

It's a complicated decision, and there has been MUCH discussion on exactly how Tinker does and does not apply, but it would seem to blow several of your arguments out of the water. One, that school districts arn't bound by the Constitution, not being "Federal government agencies". They are (Bound, that is, not federal). They get have special dispensation due to the fact that there is a compelling government interest in educating children, and that interest can justify curtailing certain civil liberties, at least as held by this case. But that shows clearly that school districts are held to constitutional tests, and are clearly NOT outside the jurisdictional bounds of the constitution or the federal court system.

Now, just what contributes to disruptive speech, acceptable curtailing of rights, and other issues has been argued fiercely, often in other SCOTUS cases. However, schools are NOT private entities, and cannot censor at will without substantial cause.

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