Whether you are talking about software or any hot button political topic the real truth is evaporating right in front of us. Stupidity is fostered by those who think you can say something intelligent using a maximum of 140 characters. The ability to signal Likes or Dislikes does not help in the slightest when trying to get to the truth. For every "for" site or forum there is a corresponding "against" site or forum that contradict one another on almost every important point. Damn near every forum you read ends up becoming an echo chamber for one side or another. About the only decent forums I read are technical in nature where the topics and questions that don't revolve around anyone's opinion to determine what is right or wrong. Of course the exception is the fan boys and sycophants pontificating on how wonderful their choice of OS and Browser is to the exclusion of all others.
Most holes today are opened by poor network management, poor patch management, poor password managment, and most of all the users. Social engineering is the leading vector of most malware today.
Comparing modern day Israeli actions to the Nazi atrocities redefines and systematically erases the true depravity, hatred, and atrocities the Nazi's committed against not only Jews but anyone else who got in their way.
Despite all the hype of recent years China's exports have not surpassed the US manufacturing output.
This kind of mindless dribble always shows itself when someone mentions Isreal. The day a Palestinian state is created is the day the US returns Texas, Arizona, New Mexico, and Southern California to Mexico. It's not like the world needs another Arab failed state to put up with.
The USS Liberty attack demonstrates why you shouldn't send your SIGINT assets into a volatile war zone. The incident was collateral damage and the Israeli's did apologize. Also at the time the US-Israeli relationship was nothing like it is today. They were not enemies but Isreal was not a US client. In 1956 the US forced France, Isreal, and Britain to call off their attempts to take over the Suez Canal. At the time the Russians were supporting Egypt and continued fighting might have dragged the US into a direct confrontation with Russia. In the 1973 war the US government did not resupply Isreal until after the Israeli's broadcast their intentions to enact their "Samson Option" in the clear so all parties could intercept the message. The Samson option meant they were loading their nukes on their F-4's and Jericho missiles. Nixon agreed the next day to re-supply the Israelis.
I am not an Assange supporter but the accusation's Sweden is using in this case seems ridiculous in the extreme. I don't understand the UK position on this case either. Just let Assange go to Ecuador and get rid of a major headache.
"Assange has obviously been driven a little batty by the U.S. government's pursuit via Sweden, U.K., etc"
Do you have any evidence that the US is forcing Sweden or the UK into sending Assange to the US? If the US really wanted Assange they would have already have him. I mean everyone knows the US just black bags people off the street and puts them on a private jet to Gitmo if they really want them. Isn't that right? Neither the UK or Sweden blindly approve extraditions to the US as a matter of course. Especially were charges of espionage with the death penalty attached are theoretically possible. The US government does some stupid things but even the most hard assed anti-Wikileak person knows that the worst crime Assange could ever be charged with is receiving stolen property and even that charge is wishful thinking by the hardliners. The information has already been leaked and the world has not ended so why put Assange or the information leaked back into the spotlight.
The dissidents SAVAK was busy with consisted of the radical Islamists and the oh so liberal knot heads who were doing everything in their power to give the Islamists another shot at running the country. While the liberal college students were busy playing with US hostages the hardliner Islamists were busy killing the old guard and taking all the power. When they were firmly ensconced in power the liberals who started the whole revolution were killed, imprisoned, or run out of the country. And for the record in 1953 it was the British who had a beef with the Iranian government over the nationalizing of their oil industry. Up to the point where they blockaded the oil exports in an effort to raise support for the IRANIANS who wanted a change in government. It was those IRANIANS who were responsible for making sure the Shah was brought back. The US did not hold a gun to anyone's head and give them an ultimatum. As a matter of fact the US military had it's hands full in Korea at the time. There are multiple power blocks in every government who court incentives from others in order to empower them to act in what they feel are their best interests. Every deal between foreign countries requires acceptance of the deal by both parties. Military threats never work but trade deals and the promise of lucrative future business deals can work wonders. But in 1953 the Iranians involved could have told the US or Britain to pound sand but they didn't did they? And compare the Iran being ruled by the Shah to the Iran being ruled by those who replaced him. It looks like someone made a mistake in 1979.
The best option is to not to break the law. The second best thing not to do is brag about it to your online buddies if you do violate the law. And the 3rd best option is to start realizing that it is becoming damn hard to hide your online footprint if some law enforcement agency really wants to track your ass down.
One more example of doing the right thing instead of the legal thing is the decisions Lincoln made during the civil war. He suspended habeas corpus and imprisoned journalists who were critical of the government during the war. Can you imagine a President doing something like this today? And despite these illegal actions Lincoln is still considered one of the best US Presidents on record.
So looking for someone who has set off a bomb, stolen a car, killed a security guard, throwing bombs out the car window while shooting at police in pursuit is the incident that you really want to hold up to prove your "liberties" are being violated? There are laws that do allow the police to search your property in certain circumstances depending upon the level of danger to both law enforcement officers and civilians at the time. In Boston the police were looking for a well armed suspect who had already shown no problem with killing. They were not searching private property looking to collect evidence or effect an arrest on the people living on the property the were looking for an armed and dangerous fugitive. If the police had treated the entire situation differently and more people had been killed the public would have crucified the police for not doing anything to prevent it.
On the Federal level the President does have the power to unilaterally go to war on his own but his decision can be overridden if the reason he presents to Congress is later deemed insufficient.
There have been times when the government has clearly violated the law for good reasons. Before the US officially entered WW2 Roosevelt violated several laws that Congress had passed to keep the US out of the war. The vast majority of the citizens at time did not want anything to do with the war in Europe. President Roosevelt felt differently and did what he thought was right instead of what was legal. He used the "Lend/Lease" program to go around the wishes of Congress and supply England with the war supplies they needed. The US Congress had also passed a law banning wire tapping while investigating German and Japanese agents in America at the time. 2 hours after the congressional vote Roosevelt sent the defense department a Presidential order authorizing them to ignore the wire tapping law. These 2 blatant examples of the President breaking the law is more than enough to impeach the President. As it turns out these 2 decisions were vital to the US war effort that the President knew was coming. And even though he broke the law and infringed on peoples liberties he is regarded as one of the best Presidents the country has ever had. Several years ago I watched a round table discussion that included presidents Carter, Bush 1, Clinton, and Bush 2. The question put to them was would they have did the same thing Roosevelt did in the same situation. All of them said they would have made the same choice. Even Carter agreed that sometimes the legal thing is not necessarily the right thing.
What I have seen is people being held to account for their actions. I have seen every detail of the IRS and Benghazi being debated endlessly in full few of the public.
"requires that the government live by them"
And when the government does not follow the law they get held to account for there actions one way or another.
And exactly what Liberties have you lost? Last time I checked the Constitution and Bill of Rights have not been amended in any way. And before you mention the all powerful Patriot Act try looking for any US citizen that has been convicted of violating it's strictures. Look hard enough and you will find that the few times the government has tried to use it against someone the court has ended up dismissing the charges because of flaws with the PA. The executive and legislative branches can make all the laws they want but the judicial branch has the final word on whether or not the law violates someones civil rights. Wait, I have thought of one liberty that has been taking away that really bothers me. I am no longer allowed to get on airplane without taking off my shoes and removing any metalic items on my person.
There were no civilians in WW2. It was a strict "us against them" fight to the death. Every side in WW2 killed millions of people towards that end. If you are going to go to war that is the only way it should be done. When WW2 was over their was no ambiguity about who won and who lost. Today's wars kill a lot of people and create havoc but in the end have little effect on the behavior of the belligerents. Both Germany and Japan were beating so bad that running an insurgency campaign was the last thing on anyone's mind.