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Comment: Re:Terrorists (Score 4, Insightful) 256

by fafalone (#49132937) Attached to: It's Official: NSA Spying Is Hurting the US Tech Economy
9/11 tore down the last bits of restraint for sure, but you need to look at the War On (arbitrarily chosen based on historical racism) Drugs for the foundations. 4th Amendment? Gone. Due process? Turned into a bad joke by a overflowed court systems coercive plea bargaining and the horrendous situation with assett forfeiture not requiring even being CHARGED, much less convicted**. Cruel and unusual punishment? I'd say years in prison just for having a drug that's not alcohol/tobacco, and decades to life for selling it to other consenting adults, it pretty damn cruel. And it's the original cause for the shift to militarization and war-like mentality for the police, because the only way to enforce this law turns people and communities against the police.

Oh, and guess what the vast majority of PATRIOT Act powers are used for, and what the 'anti-terrorism' grant dollars buy... the largest category is by far drug crimes, with terrorism coming in dead last. Law enforcement was foaming at the mouth over all the post-9/11 authority, but it sure as hell wasn't because it helped them fight terrorism- it let them make even more money, through grants and forfeitures, and superior-pleasing arrests, by fighting more drug crimes.

**And it was not 'ended' or 'reformed' by Holder, worst case of wholesale swallowing of media spin ever; it merely made it a requirement to only forfeit under federal law if you make it a joint investigation, makes it no harder to forfeit under state law, or for the feds on their own, or really at all since all it takes is putting a feds name on the paper to say it's joint)

Comment: Re:Overstamp twice. (Score 1) 133

by fafalone (#49109337) Attached to: Crystal Pattern Matching Recovers Obliterated Serial Numbers From Metal
Actually I'd think it would be the opposite... the criminals who are already going through the trouble of erasing serial numbers would be exactly the type to know about how to do it properly. Because it's usually not done by the lowest level guys. Guns are an organized crime type deal, and when it comes to things like that, only the very bottom rungs are populated by truly stupid people. Especially for larger gun running or drug dealing or car theft rings, towards the top you tend to find fairly intelligent, if not educated, people. (people that are educated AND criminals steal their money through "white collar" crimes).

Comment: Re:I recall... (Score 1) 207

by fafalone (#49109263) Attached to: Wired On 3-D Printers As Fraud Enablers
Well to be fair... out of that $20,000, $5000 probably went to regulations compliance, $10000 to patent holders if not the company itself, $4950 to the companies profit, and $45 ancillary manufacturing costs with $5 in actual materials cost.

That's the objection to 3D printing... it cuts out all the middlemen.

Comment: Re:ummm... (Score 1) 81

by fafalone (#49058845) Attached to: The Revolution Wasn't Televised: the Early Days of YouTube
I remember having a movie collection on my computer years before YouTube, comparable to DVD quality using the newly developed xvid codec. As usual, piracy led the way in online distribution. I fondly remember watching in awe as I could now download a full 700MB full movie in a minute or two over my university connection in 2003, remembering it taking longer when I did it at home over cable at home. By late 2004 I had 260 dvd-quality movies in 700MB or 1.4GB XviD format (can't believe hypermart still lets me view my ancient site where I uploaded that list)... the year before YouTube first came out. It was inevitable that video would be more easily accessible via the web, but as always, YT's legit offering was far lower quality than us evil pirates were already used to.

Comment: Re:Freedom Will Not Be Tolerated (Score 1) 215

by fafalone (#49053433) Attached to: Silk Road Drug Dealer Pleads Guilty After Federal Sting
You're advocating for decriminalization, which is a ban on all but simple possession. I was addressing this- not once did anything I say apply exclusively to simple possession. Everything I pointed out about your flawed reasoning, ignorance, and failure to identify the main issues is on display once again as you've mistakenly concluded that the fact you think simple possession alone being legal has any bearing on ANYTHING. Nothing I said is inapplicable to your position and your inability to grasp this makes me think you're seriously suffering from a deficit. You advocated for prohibition and blanket bans- that you exempt simple possession makes zero difference. tl;dr- you make yourself look less informed and intelligent with every word you type.

Comment: Re:Freedom Will Not Be Tolerated (Score 1) 215

by fafalone (#49036461) Attached to: Silk Road Drug Dealer Pleads Guilty After Federal Sting
You've once again failed to identify the salient issues. That harder drugs are harmful is not in dispute. The issue is that making them illegal under all circumstances increases the harm they cause, while doing nothing to reduce the number of addicts. If making them illegal actually prevented people from abusing them, sure it would help- but that's pure fantasy and decades of harsh enforcement and mass imprisonment have proved that being illegal doesn't stop abuse and addiction. You're completely unable to grasp the finer points. You've also ignored the issue of alcohol: this fits your criteria of being both highly inebriating and highly addictive; why again should it be legal?

Typical ignorance on display again, all your arguments consist of is "BUT DRUGS ARE BAD!", while completely failing to address why this should mean they are banned.
Drugs are addictive. Drugs can be abused to blot out the world. Drugs can destroy your life. But they should be LEGAL, because this will REDUCE those harms.

Get it? (your argument is also faulty in its implication that harder drugs cannot be used safely in moderation without negative consequences not attributable to legal status, but one step at a time)

Comment: Re:Freedom Will Not Be Tolerated (Score 1) 215

by fafalone (#49024429) Attached to: Silk Road Drug Dealer Pleads Guilty After Federal Sting
So under your paradigm of addicts incapacitating themselves and therefore harming society as a whole... you find a loophole to exonerate nicotine (note that if nicotine cost as much as crack and was illegal, you can bet your ass people would be out stealing and killing over it), but what about alcohol? People who are abusive alcoholics are FAR more of a problem to society than are people addicted to hard drugs when you consider the aspects related to harm that aren't caused or exacerbated by legal status.
So before you go any further, go ahead and whip out the mental gymnastics to exempt alcohol from your "but drugs that are really bad should still be banned" argument.

And here's the bottom line: the fact that some people abuse hard drugs to the detriment of their self, family, and society is not disputed by any serious legalization advocate, nor is a legal regime totally devoid of any regulation or consequence for abuse being advocated. The issue is whether the harm incurred by addiction is made better or worse by completely banning the substance, and it's overwhelmingly clear that allowing people to get any drug they want for an affordable cost from a medical environment with access to help and education is the method that minimizes the harm. There is zero room for banning any substance from recreational use. And at the highest level of society, merely decriminalizing possession still gives billions to violent gangs, and abdicating control of the distribution of drugs like that is a completely unacceptable way of filling the insatiable demand- it destabilizes entire countries even today.

For all your complaining about what arguments we avoid, you've once again trotted out the straw-man of anarchy: legalization advocates almost universally do not favor a completely unregulated crack-next-to-m&ms free-for-all. And you also do it in a way that reveals your own clear bias and lack of research into the facts cited by and the positions advanced by those who believe even hard drugs should be available to adults.

Comment: Re:Why not keep FOIA accessible info separately? (Score 1) 136

by fafalone (#49024335) Attached to: DEA Hands MuckRock a $1.4 Million Estimate For Responsive Documents
I'd imagine it would depend on the circumstance. There's gotta be plenty of scenarios where TS/SCI information is removed so other government employees with only Secret, or below, clearance could still use the other information. Like the DEA scrubbing their illegal activities and NSA gifts before handing information to the DoJ for prosecution.

Comment: Re:uh... (Score 1) 215

by fafalone (#49014893) Attached to: Silk Road Drug Dealer Pleads Guilty After Federal Sting
The issue isn't whether drugs are bad, or whether legalization eliminates 100% of the criminal element. The issue is whether the harm caused to individuals and society is minimized by prohibition, and the overwhelming evidence is that our current approach is doing far more harm than a legal, regulated regime would. Legalization advocates have zero hesitation to talk about every drug-derived harm there is, because there's solid evidence every single effect you can think of is made WORSE by prohibition. Shift the money from prohibition to education and treatment, and harm to users, property crimes, addiction.. it all improves.
You think the crackhead down the block is having a bad effect on your family and community? What do you think will improve it more: civil-rights abusing police turning the whole country into a police state doing armed raids on the crackhead to keep him in and out of jail while he steals from people to fund violent criminal gangs? (the current policy) Or B: He gets his crack for the same price as other, legal drugs, from medical professionals that can assure as much safety as possible and access to treatment, and gives his money to legit companies and taxes, then sits at home with it.
Families.. what if it was your kid? Does he need help from doctors and counselors, or a SWAT team kicking in his door, beating the shit out of him, and locking him up for years? You want to talk about the toll drugs have taken, not a damn thing is improved by keeping drugs illegal... not for anyone except cartels and law enforcement, both groups have huge financial incentives and love the drug war.

Comment: Re:Not me. (Score 1) 140

by fafalone (#49005021) Attached to: Why It's Important That the New Ubuntu Phone Won't Rely On Apps
You're still with the hip and cool crowd. I still refuse to use streaming music. All the music I listen to on my phone is MP3 which I strip the ID3's from because music players absolutely refuse to provide an option to just give me a list of Artist - Song, instead only sorting by title, or giving a list of artists I need to expand one by one, or god forbid by album or genre; and almost all ID3 sorting methods get thrown off by any tiny insignificant different like a space in the band name.
And how do I find new music? I hear it somewhere and use an automatic recognition program. Not willing to spend hours purposefully listening to crap, or hours correcting slight ID3 differences to sort in a way I don't like anyway.

Comment: Re:Pro-tip (Score 1, Funny) 73

If someone tells you they are a hitman, that always means they are an undercover agent.

Not the one I'm talking to. He's just the dad of the 15 year old that desperately wants my ugly 30 year old friend to come to her house for passionate sex celebrating their true love after they met on #teens4olddudes on irc.LEONet.gov:6667. He asked her if she knew anyone who would murder people too. We're going to meet up with them later at their house, then I'll show you how real it is.

Comment: Re:Not really news (Score 3, Interesting) 73

Of course Hells Angels and every other large organization is using encryption tech to communicate. But that has nothing to do with anything mentioned in this article or post or even trial.

It should be obvious to anyone who's even the slightest bit acquainted with scammers. The first thing I did when reading the transcript? Laughed and laughed and laughed since it was so blindingly obvious that lucydrops, FriendlyChemist, and redandwhite were all the same person working a scam. Blackmail (ludicrous to begin with, my ass you have tons of vendors details) not working? "Hi, I'm authorized to contract hits for a major gang! Need some help with your blackmail problem? And of course I don't mind killing the roommates too! It will get you a bulk rate on your hits! Then we'll sell dirt cheap Hells Angel brand drugs and let everyone else benefit from my lack of concern about who I am with!"
Computer geek without the slightest clue how junkie hustlers work. Would bet anything asking DPR to front that alleged new vendor operation would have been the next step if not for the arrest. Funny stuff. Dudes own personal cash pinata, just keep whacking(!) for shiny bitcoin candy!

Comment: Re: Did Congress pass a law? (Score 2) 122

by fafalone (#48846825) Attached to: Cuba's Pending Tech Revolution

Eric holder just gutted civil forfeiture. That's a good move, should have been repealed 30 years ago, I'm all for it.

I see you've fallen for the PR-spin version. The administration loves making it SEEM like they're reformers when they really did very little. What Holder actually did was limit the ability of state and local governments to seize assets under federal law, then later have a federal agency 'adopt' the seizure and take a percent cut under the 'equitable sharing' program. This is bypassed by simply categorizing something as a joint investigation and sticking some feds name on the papers. As if that wasn't a hole big enough to drive a truck through, there's also an exemption where the seizure 'protects public safety' where the feds may still adopt it (this was in the damn headline of the announcement on justice.gov)
The bigger deal is that this is ultimately trivial, as it does nothing to stop seizures under state law. The yet even bigger than that deal is that STILL not a god damn thing has been done about the fact that seizures still require no criminal activity; they can (and do) seize property without ever even filing charges against the owner, who must now go to court and PROVE HE'S INNOCENT to get it back. Nor does it address highway patrols that seize any large amount of cash they find. That's right, when police find you with a lot of money, they'll take it and you'll have to pay for a lawyer to go to court and prove it's NOT drug money. Nothing in Holder's new policy even touches on any of this.
Even with criminal activity... your kid got caught selling a little pot? The car you bought for him and your house are now subject to seizure under state law, and the new federal policy won't help you there either.

It is not best to swap horses while crossing the river. -- Abraham Lincoln

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