When a manufacturer is selecting which OS to pre-install the only thing that matters is which one will allow the average user to run the most applications. Believe it or not people use computers to run applications not just an OS. This applies to both personal and business users. If the FOSS OS evangelists spent more time pushing for more applications and development tools that help streamline application development then Linux in all it's variations might actually be used more outside the data center.
As long as the same divorce rules apply then more power to them. Alimony, child support, and division of marital assets may have some wondering about this whole same sex marriage initiative.
There are already laws that govern police behavior. Just because the police may break those laws does not mean we need more laws. And companies also have a whole list of laws and regulations they must adhere to and just because a company may break those laws doesn't mean more laws are needed. And everyone should have equal opportunities but there are some who willfully fail to take advantage of those opportunities. No matter what reforms are handed down by the national or local governments the ultimate responsibility is on the individual and trying to shift the responsibility on to someone else will not help anything.
The Senators are a bunch of morons and are the last group that should ever complain about someone lying. They are experts at prevarication and give unambiguous answers that always leave room for them to back track. Only a very select committee of Senators are privy to anything relating to classified US intelligence matters and that committee is responsible for determining what information can be safely released to the entire Senate. Any Senator claiming they did not know about certain intelligence programs or operations should first go after their fellow Senators on the foreign intelligence committee and ask them what they know and then go after the particular intelligence agency. This investigation was not being conducted by this intelligence committee. The vast majority of Senators and staffers do not even have the necessary security clearances needed for access to certain classified information about US intelligence programs. In this particular case the CIA discovered the Senate had possession of an internal CIA report that had not been legally obtained through the proper channels. The CIA could attempt to justify it's actions by claiming there had been a security leak (which there was) and they were investigating how the Senate got a hold of the document in question. The first logical step in the investigation would be obtaining proof the document was actually on the Senate computer system. The Senate constantly wastes time on these types of conflicts while doing nothing that would actually help the country and the people who put them in office. The Senate is more dangerous to the US public than the CIA and NSA combined. And the feckless Senators will do nothing of consequence in this cat fight because they are just barely smart enough not to get into a full blown conflict with agencies capable of destroying their political careers. After all the CIA has had a lot of practice changing governments around the world using subtle and not to subtle means. The Senate and the CIA deserve each other.
You can carry enough explosives on your back or in the trunk of a car and just walk into or just park close to any public building or public transportation system and detonate. Using drones to do the same thing would just take the "suicide" out of the classic "suicide bomber" gambit first popularized by Japan in WW2. And it could be quite fun taken pot shots at drones flying overhead with your trusty ole 12 Gauge. The only drones you should probably let pass unmolested are those racking a couple of Hell Fire missiles. The tag price for bagging one of those could be quite expensive to say the least. Life will never be a safe as people want it to be and if it was it would probably be pretty damn boring.
At no time did I say the US deserves a free pass for it's actions. But that same free pass is constantly being extended to countries such as Russia, NK, and Iran. It's come down to nobody can do any wrong and if they are doing something wrong it was because the US forced their hands.
And if these guys are not subjected to any of the bad consequences you listed would you be willing to reevaluate your arguments?
Secret courts? Are you talking about the FISA court? Those proceedings are indeed kept confidential but it is hardly secret. As a matter of fact it has been around since 1978. Any information collected under the auspices of a FISA warrant cannot be used in any court against any defendant. And Russia uses it's transparent judicial system to efficiently prosecute anyone who dares challenge the state or attempts to organize political protests. The fact is the Russian or Chinese judicial systems are opaque and hardly ever publicly investigated or even debated while the US judicial system is debated and criticized endlessly.
On the whole skin pigmentation has played a relatively minor role in the overall history of human warfare. War is the original equal opportunity endeavor. Human history is filled with examples of people who when lacking an external enemy turn on one another. Since humans started fighting over access to nicer caves there has not been 5 minutes where there has not been some type of warfare going on somewhere on the globe. Fighting and killing one another is the most predictable and constant human traits.
Just how far back into the past are you willing to go to start righting all the wrongs in the world? Every square foot of land on the planet has been invaded and occupied by an ever changing cast of characters with the most strategic pieces of land having had their borders drawn in blood more than once. And the blood letting is still ongoing right this minute in many places around the world. The entirety of human civilization has been built upon might equals right. Civilizations get built using violence and get torn down with violence and that pattern still holds true today and will most likely continue to hold true until the planet is just a big radioactive ball of lifeless dirt. So how about you go start righting some wrongs perpetrated by people who have been dead for a few hundred years but I'd advise you to build up a significant arsenal before starting on your noble quest. Or you could just be happy with the fact that a small number of US citizens exercised their rights to stop a construction project on land they would rather keep the way it is. It doesn't really matter why they were against the project but I have seen people do the exact same thing to keep a strip mall from being built on land near where they live just to keep the traffic down. No need of sacred burial grounds or state sovereignty issues to bolster their arguments.
It has been the nuclear stockpiles of the US, China, and Russia along with the MAD doctrine which has basically neutralized the threat of a large scale nuclear attack. The premise has always been if one side or the other were to execute a nuclear strike there would be an immediate retaliatory strike within minutes. The problem with Iran having nuclear weapons is that their foreign policy doctrine has consistently, and quite openly, revolved around supporting non-state actors like Hezbollah, Hamas, and all the various offshoots as proxies to fight Israel and any Sunni aligned group in the ME they wish to hurt. If one of their proxies were to get their hands on a nuclear weapon and detonate it in the US or Europe there would be no immediate counter strike option. It could take months to positively identify were the weapon originated. Would there be the political will to launch a retaliatory nuclear counter strike months if not years after the original attack? Now if a nuclear weapon was detonated in Israel their investigation of the weapons origin would last about 30 seconds and Tehran would be a radioactive wasteland 30 seconds after that. The countries in the ME will be lucky if the Israeli's don't decide to take out Riyadh and Mecca at the same time just for spite.
Failing the whole class penalizes those who did not cheat or issue threats against the professor. The Universities decision to not allow the whole class to be summarily failed was correct. The only way failing the whole class would have been the correct thing to do would be if the entire class, without exception, cheated or broke other rules. How indignant would you be if you were in the class and did not cheat or participate in any of the immature harassment that the teacher was apparently subjected to and you failed? That is the shit storm the university was trying to avoid. It also doesn't mean the professor could not use evidence of cheating against individuals and fail them. And this case has absolutely nothing to do with banks being bailed out other than the use of the word "bailout" in the discussion.
Paying tuition does not mean a University or college never prevents anyone from failing out of school. Full paying students fail out of school quite frequently and are not "bailed out" in an effort to create future alumni. So your statement is patently false and offered with no proof. In this particular case I am sure there were some students who passed the required tests without cheating but ended up being punished because of a bunch of immature morons causing all the trouble. By providing security for this professor the university evidently took the threats of violence claims seriously. The University was correct in preventing the whole class from failing and now they should try and make an effort to prove which students were cheating.
The only result of Snowdens actions will be the NSA adding more compartmentalization to the data stored. User security access will be put under the microscope and every action will be logged and monitored, especially any thing related to copying files and downloads. Snowden accomplished two main things. He gave the US enemies around the world something to use for their propaganda against anything associated with the US. Even though those countries run their own intelligence services and do the same thing the NSA does or those who have actually been cooperating with the NSA. He should have limited his publishing to only information related to US domestic arena. He could have used all the data on foreign intelligence as leverage to return home and face no charges but he didn't. The second thing he did was put into motion sweeping security reviews of both their systems and employees. Other than those two items it has still been business as usual.
The goal of creating a safe drop box is to send information and make sure the submitter remains anonymous.Once the data is delivered anonymously why do only certain persons or groups get to hoard that information instead of making it all accessible to anyone who wants to see it. Why should we automatically trust Assange and the ex-Guardian journalist to control the dissemination of the data?