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Comment: Re:Failed state policies (Score 2) 435

by isilrion (#48623805) Attached to: In Breakthrough, US and Cuba To Resume Diplomatic Relations

1) Fidel Castro leaving the country for treatment actually happened, which is very obviously an option not available to the vast majority of Cubans, hence my quote from Animal Farm: "All animals are equal, but some are more equal than others."

Actually, you would be surprised about that. When treatment is not available in Cuba, patients are often sent to other countries. This is in no way limited to elites. Unfortunately, budget restrictions are very real. I wanted to share another link about that, but I could not find it. (Also, I have no idea re: Fidel Castro leaving the country for treatment)

2) They could have the best healthcare system in the World and I still wouldn't want to live there.

Indeed.

Nor would most people who value freedom and liberty...

Try "prosperity". I would say that most Cuban migrants leave because of the economy. Yes, there may be a causal relationship between the lack of liberty and the poor economy, but they are subtle enough that most don't even notice. I didn't feel not-free (though, in hindsight, I really did not have the "freedoms" that I now enjoy). Even some who thirst for liberty, seem to be seeking a better economy, to the point that some want to return to Cuba after receiving asylum in Spain. (Sorry, I couldn't find a source in English).

Comment: Re:$1.1 Trillion over 54 years... (Score 1) 540

by isilrion (#47990711) Attached to: Cuba Calculates Cost of 54yr US Embargo At $1.1 Trillion
Meh, I give up. You are not worth it. Just illustrate your dishonesty before leaving:

So you're admitting that you were wrong to claim Gross had been convicted of "plotting against the Cuban government?" That's one of the three things you have repeatedly said he was convicted of.

attempting to smuggle illegal contraband (after successfully smuggling more in earlier trips), with the goal of overthrowing the Cuban government, financed by a foreign (and openly hostile) country. (You were the one claiming it was for "planning".)

Again, it was not only for planning. It was for acting on those plans.

Sigh. Again. He acted in Cuba. (...). But again, irrelevant, he wasn't convicted for sitting in DC thinking about what he was going to do. He was convicted for going to Cuba and doing his part in the conspiracy.

For crying out loud, no, they didn't claim jurisdiction over what the US decided to do. They claimed jurisdiction over what Gross decided to do in Cuba, which was to enter as a tourist while (not so) secretly being an american agent acting on plans to overthrow/destabilize the government. (I grant you that I said "decided to do" instead of "did", but it is clear that he did do it)

And he chose to do them in Cuba, where US law doesn't apply, and, *gasp*, Cuban law applies.

Offtopic, again! He was arrested for trying to overthrow the Cuban government as an agent of the US government. Where he did his planning is irrelevant!

Talking about Vilyam Genrikhovich Fisher was your idea.

"If your conclusion that Cuba clearly had jurisdiction for every charge you mention was in any way valid, don't you think you could come up with a single example of a non-citizen being sent to prison for years for being a foreign agent?" (And several other requests just like that)

I also mentioned the actual charge, "crimes against the state", a couple of times. Unfortunately, I believe it is impossible to have a discussion about whether his arrest "proves" that the Cubans like the embargo if you can't even acknowledge that the charge was not "planning" by itself, but acting his part of the conspiracy. You deny the facts because you are so utterly convinced that the Cubans lack the right to defend themselves, that even trying to do it can only mean that they are purposedly provoking you in hopes of a retaliation.

Comment: Re:$1.1 Trillion over 54 years... (Score 1) 540

by isilrion (#47970661) Attached to: Cuba Calculates Cost of 54yr US Embargo At $1.1 Trillion

Just like it did in this case. By arresting the person hired.

So, your notion is that an employee of the US government should be able to act freely in Cuba, and the Cubans have no right to stop him? Just because the "planning" took part outside of Cuba?

So he can be arrested for plotting against the Cuban government when all the actual plotting happened in the US?

Offtopic, again! He was arrested for trying to overthrow the Cuban government as an agent of the US government. Where he did his planning is irrelevant!

You'll note the guy you found wasn't charged with plotting against the US Government (altho he did that).

WTF? I can't... why would Cuba charge an US employee of plotting against the US Government?

And he chose to do them in Cuba, where US law doesn't apply, and, *gasp*, Cuban law applies.

[...] Which means that, by your own admission, Cuba has less respect for foreign nation's sovereignty then even we do in America.

Sigh. Let's see. The US sends an agent (among many) to overthrow the Cuban government, the Cubans arrest the agent, and the Cubans are the ones not respecting "foreign nation's sovereignty"? That's the stereotypical arrogant attitude that one hopes doesn't really exist in america. You are actually claiming that Cuba doesn't respect US sovereignty because they don't follow US law in Cuba.

I HAVE NEVER SAID THEY HAD TO RELEASE HIM PRIOR TO NEGOTIATIONS.

GOOD. THEN WE AGREE. So, what's your point then? You believe that "Raul wants the embargo to continue" because... Obama has refused to negotiate? (Also, you are arguing that he shouldn't have been arrested in the first place, therefore, you *are* arguing that he should be released). I dare you to point out any attempt at meaningful negotiation in this case that has been refused by the Cubans. And I invite you to look for the many press releases from the Cubans saying they want to negotiate, and the many from the US saying "no way".

There's no way man-in-the-middle problems can appear with those, and (more importantly) you reduce the chance Obama can claim there were no negotiations to zero.

Obama hasn't claimed that there have not been any attempts to negotiate. On the contrary, he claims that he is unwilling to.

the objective standard used is "what did those other guys do when they had a similar spat four years ago?"

I've already explained to you why this was different. They were US Citizens.

And still, that's the most similar case. They are also Cuban citizens. And they were charged for being unregistered agents (which they probably "plotted" outside of the US), and for conspiracy charges (which most certainly didn't happen inside the US, especially not the conspiracy to commit murder). They were not charged for being US citizens. Why you keep bringing up their citizenship is beyond me, Cuban law applies to everyone in Cuba, not just citizens... just like US law applies to everyone in the US (or everwhere the US can exert influence---"might makes right").

His planning wasn't one of the charges. Two charges of transmitting information, one charge of failing to register as an Agent. Transmitting information is something he actually did while on US soil.

And neither was Gross. He wasn't convicted for "planning" to be a US agent in Cuban soil, he was convicted for acting as a US agent in Cuban soil. That is something he actually did while on Cuban soil. He wasn't an agent chilling in Varadero, he was doing what he was getting paid to do.

(Also, "planning" were two of the charges against the five. The prosecution never proved that they had actually sent any information, so they settled for a live sentence for "planning" to do so)

Failing to Register as an Agent is (as I have already admitted) fairly tricky in terms of international law. It's one example of the US over-stepping it's boundaries. But (as you found out in your research) it doesn't get used very much.

No, it isn't over-stepping it's boundaries, not with this one. (But if you think it is, you must be enraged about the embargo, and about them sending agents to overthrow foreign governments). And yes, they are used, at the very minimum, as a negotiating tool. It just happens that countries rarely refuse to negotiate for their agents just so they can blame the other party.

I want the embargo to end. I just don't think the Cuban government wants it to end.

You want it to end by having the Cubans act as the US wants them to act. You don't think the Cuban government wants it to end because they don't just obey on cue.

Comment: Re:$1.1 Trillion over 54 years... (Score 1) 540

by isilrion (#47957029) Attached to: Cuba Calculates Cost of 54yr US Embargo At $1.1 Trillion

So your argument is that Cuba can make it illegal for the US Government to hire people?

Not at all. I haven't seen the "US government" jailed for hiring people. Therefore, whether the Cubans have the right to outlaw certain actions of the US government or not is irrelevant. In this case, they didn't even try. How do you imagine that would work?

He chose to do things while in the US that are completely legal under US Law. In fact most of them are actually required by US Law.

And he chose to do them in Cuba, where US law doesn't apply, and, *gasp*, Cuban law applies.

And again, you're bringing up the strawman of unconditional release. I have never argued that Cuba's only choice was unconditional release.

So, what conditions is Cuba allowed to request before the release? Because you insist on releasing him even before negotiations have taken place. Do you want them to demand conditions after they release him? If that is not unconditional, I don't know what it is.

As I said before, if they wanted to release him the time for negotiations would have been back in early 2010.

Because NicBenjamin says so? I gave you an example of a guy who wasn't released by the US until around five years after the arrest. And as you said earlier, very eloquently, there are not a lot of comunications channels between Cuba and the US. I really doubt Cuba turned down any oportunity for (meaningful) negotiation.

the objective standard used is "what did those other guys do when they had a similar spat four years ago?"

Oh, good, then. The closest case to this between Cuba and the US have been the Cuban Five. And we know what the US did. If there is another more similar case where the US acted differently, please enlighten me.

Read the charges against him. He got 30 years for transmitting classified information, and five for failing to register as a foreign agent.

Goalposts moved. I read the charges. So, your contention is that he was charged under two laws for the same action, and Gross was charged under only one? As far as I know, Cuba has no law requiring the registration of foreign agents, but it has one forbidding crimes against the state by foreign agents. Go figure.

Also, I doubt that the russian guy did his planning in US soil. As per your first argument in your reply, are you saying that the US can make it illegal for the Soviet Government to hire people?

Comment: Re:Dial up can still access gmail (Score 1) 334

We've never been to Asia. I've been thinking about going on vacation abroad with them. In your opinion, is Baekdu Mountain worth the trip? They always go to Florida, I would expect them to be bored by now. Maybe I can convince them to go elsewhere... but I don't think they are big fans of mountains.

Comment: Re:Dial up can still access gmail (Score 1) 334

Wow, thanks. Saving that page now. I'm feeling tempted to send them an autorun.reg attachment. I'll try it in my computer first, though. (Also, I didn't realize how braindead window's autorun "feature" is. I really hope gnome/kde devs don't want to imitate that).

Actually, if I can send them a .reg file by email, I could try to add a few more things (like showing extensions). I wonder if I can also send them some kind of group policy update to prevent their do-gooder friends from re-enabling the extension hiding "feature". In any case, thanks!

Comment: Re:$1.1 Trillion over 54 years... (Score 1) 540

by isilrion (#47942077) Attached to: Cuba Calculates Cost of 54yr US Embargo At $1.1 Trillion

enter as a tourist while (not so) secretly being an american agent [Status as an American Agent is determined by the American government, and is therefore something "the US decided to do"]

No, it isn't, unless your claim is that Gross was a slave of the US government. He had a choice. He chose to accept several millions in exchange for the risk. And now he is paying for his choice.

If your conclusion that Cuba clearly had jurisdiction for every charge you mention was in any way valid, don't you think you could come up with a single example of a non-citizen being sent to prison for years for being a foreign agent?

How other countries choose to deal with the threats is irrelevant to what makes sense for Cuba to do, and ignoring the particular context of Cuba's actions is naive at best. Most, if not all of those you claim to have been released, have been released after negotiations have taken place, not unconditionally. Every single case that ended with an agent swap necessarily serves as the example you ask for (the agents arrested by the first country are held until the second country has something to offer in return). So far, that's also the case with Gross, only that, because the US refuses to negotiate, the negotiations have not yet taken place.

Also, Vilyam Genrikhovich Fisher, russian agent captured by the US, tried, convicted, sentenced to 30 years, served several years in prison before he was exchanged. Yu Xin Kang, Chinese, convicted by the US to 18 months. I suppose that now you are going to move the goalposts and demand some other conditions. It will be very easy to demand a condition that I cannot satisfy, after all, non-citizens don't make very good spies, and it is even rarer for a country to outright refuse to negotiate for the release of their agents. I'm curious to see what new demands you come up with.

Comment: Re:It doesn't make sense (Score 1) 334

by isilrion (#47936143) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Remote Support For Disconnected, Computer-Illiterate Relatives

That is an enlightened reply. I appreciate the time you took in writing it. You made me realize a few issues I had forgotten in the original post that makes part of this unworkable (they wont accept having to be at home to check the email, they usually dial-up from other places, I had forgotten about that). You are correct that from their perspective, everything is working (when something fails, e.g., they manage to erase a password or delete/reorder an icon, they blame it to the "computer being old"). I readily forget that... I must not.

Comment: Re:It doesn't make sense (Score 2) 334

by isilrion (#47934107) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Remote Support For Disconnected, Computer-Illiterate Relatives

Hmm, so you are saying it is not really an ISP. It is only an email provider. And so we are not really talking about something like a 3rd world country, it is not so much a matter of infrastructure but of control (Cuba perhaps?).

Correct (with some nuances irrelevant for the situation being discussed). I'd rather avoid satellite solutions, just to ensure that I (and my family) stay entirely within the law. I used that email service for years and that ISP was pretty decent (given the restrictions). If you are savvy enough, you can do with those 15Mb much more than what one would expect. The breakdown is just the combination of my family being "not savvy" with the restrictions. If they had TCP conectivity but were illiterate, I could try to leave the some "backdoor" (vnc, ssh, remote desktop, whatever) and coordinate with them to "fix" their issues. Most of the issues, btw, are "the [ISP name] went away", meaning "I deleted or moved the desktop icon". I have done that with relatives not in Cuba. Or, if they lacked a TCP connection but were savvy, I could just communicate with them and tell them what to fix.

This slashdot topic was a long shot. I had some ideas in mind, most too complex / brittle to be worth implementing and I wanted a opinions from a savvy crowd. I should have asked years ago! There was a suggestion of a Wifi-dial-up modem combo device + a tablet that I hadn't thought of, and while it doesn't cover all my "requirements", it may be a sufficient improvement over the current situation to be worth trying. In any case... I have almost a year to think about it and prepare, and now that I was given some ideas worthy of consideration, I'm grateful. I hope at least one comes to fruition.

Comment: Re:It doesn't make sense (Score 1) 334

by isilrion (#47933857) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Remote Support For Disconnected, Computer-Illiterate Relatives
Sigh. Original poster here. I'm not trolling. There are many viruses that transmit via email attachment (click_here_for_a_pretty_photo.exe) and USB drives. I am not the only person they comunicate with. As to where the nigerian/spammers got their email, it has leaked over the years.

Comment: Re:Standard remote access (Score 1) 334

by isilrion (#47933771) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Remote Support For Disconnected, Computer-Illiterate Relatives

There's no other service provider?

Kind of. That's the only service provider they have access to. Over there, there are no ISPs offering services to the public. Your employer is your ISP (if you have one at all): they buy a bunch of modems and phone lines to give access to their employees. They typically had so little bandwidth that they are forced to restrict access. There are some "cybercafes" with high prices, long lines, and that I doubt will offer better service than dial-up (for what I've read, you are not even allowed to download your messages to a usb drive). Their employer is considered to be one of the "best" providers, go figure.

Comment: Re:Dial up can still access gmail (Score 2) 334

by isilrion (#47933721) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Remote Support For Disconnected, Computer-Illiterate Relatives

Oh, I remember that. I thought they had implemented something better. Yep, over there, you give up long before the "Hi! You're a second class citizen" message. I recall that I used some python module that crawled gmail when it was really bad, and that there was some 3rd party "gmail lite" website that creeped me out but people used it nonetheless.

Apparently /. doesn't let me post too frequently. I've got pretty interesting suggestions in this thread, I won't be able to thank them all or clarify their questions. In case I can't and they come back and read /this/ response: Gmail is not an option. It would be ideal (imap or pop3), but everything beyond their local email servers is firewalled. They can browse a handful of sites via a squid proxy server in their network, but gmail (or any other competing "open" email provider) isn't among them.

"Life sucks, but it's better than the alternative." -- Peter da Silva

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