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Comment: Quote (Score 1) 67

by Rei (#49363093) Attached to: Russia Wants To Work With NASA On a New Space Station

"We are pleased Roscomos wants to continue full use of the International Space Station through 2024 -- a priority of ours -- and expressed interest in continuing international cooperation for human space exploration beyond that. The United States is planning to lead a human mission to Mars in the 2030s, and we have advanced that effort farther than at any point in NASA's history. We welcome international support for this ambitious undertaking.

Yeah, that's basically "Go F* yourselves" in diplomatic speech.

And as it should be.

Comment: Re:WIMPs (Score 1) 202

by Rei (#49360117) Attached to: Dark Matter Is Even More of a Mystery Than Expected

One thing that dark energy can't be is *all* fundamental constants, plus position, velocity, etc scaling up evenly. Because if such was the case then there would be no perceptible change.

If youe saying that for example what is ground state would change too then it seems like you're arguing that things at the quantum level *aren't* moving into higher energy states. But things at the macroscopic level absolutely are moving into a higher energy state. So are you arguing that dark energy doesn't act on the quantum scale? I find that difficult to accept if so.

Comment: Re:How propaganda decides wars (Score 1) 252

by quantaman (#49358813) Attached to: How Professional Russian Trolls Operate

So just because the USSR tried to manipulate the peace movement therefore delegitimizes the entire peace movement?

No, not entire — there were sincere pacifists even during WW2 — and not automatically. We need to painfully examine, to what extent the peace movement was compromised by involvement of both USSR and domestic terrorists. You may suspect me of overestimating the enemy's impact, but you are certainly underestimating it.

You're not overestimating the enemy's impact, you're accusing your ideological opponents of being stooges. I'm certain you're not nearly as concerned by the propaganda put out by those who agree with you.

When the US was about to resume shooting in Iraq in 2003, the whole world erupted in the biggest coordinated protest in history — and not by Iraqis, but by outraged Westerners expressing their sympathy.. Where were these peace-loving legions, when Putin invaded Ukraine in 2014? What few protests there were, they were largely by Ukrainian expats with very few sympathetic locals in evidence. Why?

Because:
a) People expect a lot more of the US than Russia
b) The US sets international standards, and by invading Iraq it helps legitimize things like Ukraine
c) The US is a Western country, it makes a lot of sense for Westerners to protest it because they have a chance of influencing the politicians. What the hell does Russia care if a bunch of Americans or Canadians come out in protest? And what should Canadians and Americans even protest for, we don't have a lot of leverage.

Because Putin's propaganda machine worked — on the entire spectrum of Western politics, not just the Left as the USSR used to. Rightist Jews in the US were accusing Ukraine's new "junta" of being "nazis", while actual American Nazis called the new government "Jews". Without arguing with each other, but both helped Putin. Most likely, they didn't realize it — but there is no doubt, a there is a group of analysts at FSB attached to each Western opinion-maker. US is a pathetic noob at this.

Wake up and smell "people's power" — and the power of propagandists to manipulate it.

It didn't do squat. Yes there's a few fringe folks who are influenced, but they're pretty insubstantial.

In the EU it might be different, Greece in particular might have a legitimate problem, but in the English speaking West Russian propaganda is a joke.

Comment: Re:WIMPs (Score 4, Interesting) 202

by Rei (#49358535) Attached to: Dark Matter Is Even More of a Mystery Than Expected

That the thing about dark matter... it has a perfectly reasonable explanation (WIMPs). It's not that weird of a "thing".

Dark energy on the other hand, that's just WEIRD ;) It doesn't act like any "energy" as we know it, even though everything is clearly moving into a higher energy state. A question I've had for a while... if space itself is being inflated (or any sort of mathematically equivalent scenario) - everything inflating in all directions at all scales - wouldn't there be some sort of weak radiation signal from electrons expanding into a higher energy state due to dark energy and then collapsing back down? But I have trouble picturing how to reconcile an absolute, varying distance at the atomic scale with quantization of energy states, positions, etc...

Comment: Re:Ummmm ... duh? (Score 1) 352

by Rei (#49358149) Attached to: Modern Cockpits: Harder To Invade But Easier To Lock Up

Sure there is: add this to the CPDLC standard and make all of the hardware modifications needed to support it:

----
Message type: Revert flight plan and lock
Message arguments: TIME: the time of the flight plan to use
Message description: Revert to the flight plan that was active at TIME that had been approved by both ground control and the pilot; engage autopilot; and disable all pilot / copilot access to all systems. If there is no approved flight plan then the flight plan is to return to the nearest suitable airport in the most direct route possible.
----

Additional modifications: Make sure that the pilot can never disable datalink communications with ground by any means that ground wouldn't have time to respond to.

Result: Nobody is ever "remote controlling" the plane from the ground. A murderous / terrorist ground controller can't crash the plane, only make it autopilot itself on a previously approved or otherwise reasonable flight plan. A pilot behaving suspiciously can't crash the plane, as ground control will just engage the autopilot and lock them out. To abuse the system both ground and the pilot would have to agree on a suicidal flight plan.

Comment: Re:How propaganda decides wars (Score 1) 252

by quantaman (#49357249) Attached to: How Professional Russian Trolls Operate

You're talking about the public perception of the war, UN approval forms part of that public perception.

UN's approval or lack thereof, by all appearances, was used to justify the opposition to war later, when the questions like mine here started popping up. I could find no references to UN's decision (or absence of it) as a factor. Could you?

I'm not mining quotes from 60 years ago but it certainly would have affected the perception. Korean was very much a multinational mission, Vietnam was not.

It's possible, but a far more likely factor is the fact they were very different wars at very different times.

Well, I explained, how they were similar — only a few years apart and both in far lands without evident immediate threat to the US.

The Korean war was over in 3 years. In Vietnam the US stepped into a long running conflict which ran a lot longer.

I fail to see, how the length of a conflict affects the justification of it.

Wars become more unpopular the longer they go, that's fairly basic. The public wasn't particularly anti-War at the start of the war, it became that way later on (similar to Iraq).

You've also got media actually showing the home front what the battlefield actually looks like, that's a pretty profound change from previously where media pieces were basically clips from war movies.

Yes. And the fact that media at home chose to concentrate on the negative, instead of praising the troops in general and heralding acts of valor in particular is, in my opinion, explained by (at least, in part) by the enemy's propaganda efforts.

That would be a pretty small part. The moment the media came to the conclusion they could be actual reporters instead of propagandists the friendly propaganda effort was done.

Finally you had a completely different culture in the 60's that was largely based on a rejection of authority

And where, one wonders, did that come from?

From stuff that didn't have much to do with the USSR (though many were undoubtedly interested in leftist ideas).

And where is it now, when questioning authority is not only not patriotic, but racist?

It's only racist when the complainers start blowing dog whistles. As it happens referring to Obama as a community organizer, a job he held for 3 years in his mid-twenties before going onto far more impressive things. That could be just partisan bias, but there's a definite dog whistle quality to it.

You don't need Soviet propaganda to explain the Vietnam peace movement

Well, we know for a fact (an inconvenient one), that USSR and other Communists were behind at least some of the "peace" organizations, such as the venerable World Peace Council.

The practice is still ongoing — an establishment calling itself "anti-war", for example, is calling for international approval of Russia's invasion into and annexation of Crimea — do you think, they would've approved of Kosovo or Kurdistan voting to become a United States' 51st state? Is it really over-the-board to wonder, if, perhaps, this Justin Raimondo is manipulated by Kremlin — whether he even knows it or not?

So just because the USSR tried to manipulate the peace movement therefore delegitimizes the entire peace movement? And an 'anti-war' organization that virtually no one on the left listens to or agrees with is evidence of that fact?

Israel is certainly trying to sway US public opinion, does that make you a puppet of some Jewish lobby? (for the record I say no)

Comment: Re:How propaganda decides wars (Score 1) 252

by quantaman (#49355405) Attached to: How Professional Russian Trolls Operate

Compare our invasion of Korea with that of Vietnam only a few years later. Before you say "Korea was UN-approved" — no, that's a lame excuse. Stalin boycotted UN at the time action on Korea was decided, but by the time of Vietnam USSR has changed its approach. That's all.

So what? You're talking about the public perception of the war, UN approval forms part of that public perception.

In both cases American military was sent to fight in remote lands against people, who didn't threaten America directly in any way — for fear of the domino effect of Communism. In both cases the fighting was heavy and numerous war-crimes have taken place.

And yet, there was no domestic opposition to the Korean war — virtually none. No protests against the draft, no accusations of returning soldiers being "baby-killers". John Kerry, for example, has gained more political capital for opposing the war (and returning his medals), than for fighting in it (for an entire 4 months).

Vietnam was widely considered a national shame long before the war was lost. Meanwhile the only source of any negativity about the Korean war in mass culture was the M*A*S*H series.

Why was the domestic reaction to the two wars so drastically different? The theory of propagandists controlled and funded (with or without their own knowledge) by the USSR would explain the known facts.

It's possible, but a far more likely factor is the fact they were very different wars at very different times.

The Korean war was over in 3 years. In Vietnam the US stepped into a long running conflict which ran a lot longer.

The US was also coming straight out of WWII, so the idea that you should deal with belligerent countries pro-actively sounded like a really good idea and provided a great narrative, the communist threat would have also seemed less intractable since you didn't have to deal with Nuclear arms race.

You've also got media actually showing the home front what the battlefield actually looks like, that's a pretty profound change from previously where media pieces were basically clips from war movies.

Finally you had a completely different culture in the 60's that was largely based on a rejection of authority, do you think that was going to mix well with the military?

You don't need Soviet propaganda to explain the Vietnam peace movement, the known facts are explained by the known facts.

Comment: Re:Memorizing site-unique passwords isn't possible (Score 2) 255

by Rei (#49350175) Attached to: Generate Memorizable Passphrases That Even the NSA Can't Guess

Yeah, the suggested method for generating passwords generates needlessly long passwords. The total entropy is good, but the entropy per character is pretty poor. You get much better entropy per character with abbreviation passwords, where you have a sentence or group of random words and you use the first letter from each, or second, or last, or alternating, or whatever suits you. It's still not as much entropy per character as a random pattern, but it's much better than writing out full words - and pops into your head just as fast (because it is, in essence, the same).

"Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain." -- The Wizard Of Oz

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