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Submission + - Jerry Pournelle, RIP (lawrenceperson.com)

Nova Express writes: Science fiction writer and pioneering computer columnist Jerry Pournelle has died, according to a post by his son. Not only did he write acclaimed science fiction (frequently in collaboration with Larry Niven), he was famous in computer circles for his long-running Chaos Manor column in Byte magazine, where he gave his first-person impressions of the latest software. His Chaos Manor website later became one of the first blogs on the Internet.

Comment "Protected Classes" (Score 1, Insightful) 754

I'm so old I remember when tech companies used to hire individuals based on their ability to do the work. How old fashioned!

Victimhood Identity Politics is in direct opposition to the American principle of individualism. Evidently treating people as individuals doesn't offer SJW types enough opportunities for graft or lording over others to make them conform to their far-left culture war politics.

So we get "Protected Classes," because some animals are more equal than others...

Comment California is screwed (Score 1) 520

High costs, high taxes, and high regulation that are driving people and businesses out of the state. The minimum wage hike is only going to accelerate the trend by driving more business to other states and causing those that can't move to either invest in automation to replace their existing workers, or just hire more illegal aliens.

And the huge public sector union pension debt is going to cause more municipalities, and eventually the state itself, to go bankrupt.

Comment If the Hulk Hogan's sex tape is free speech... (Score 3, Insightful) 199

...then every pervert posting illicit upskirt pictures of women without permission is a champion of the first amendment.

Many of the interviewees huff about the First Amendment, and yet not one of them explains how “Congress shall make no law . . . abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press” applies to publishing a sex tape made without permission. A Florida jury was asked to consider the following questions: Was posting the video offensive to a reasonable person? Was it devoid of news value? Did Gawker founder Nick Denton participate in posting the video? The answers to the first and third questions are hardly debatable. As for news value: If Hogan’s sex tape is fair game, whose isn’t? Given that women are the usual targets of this sort of thing, it’s surreal to hear so many members of the supposed Party of Women (TM) say that there is a legitimate public interest in viewing any famous person’s bedroom activities. Try to imagine liberals making the case that Breitbart has the First Amendment right to publish a covertly recorded sex tape involving, say, Tina Fey or Rachel Maddow simply because some sleaze merchant shopped it to them.

Asked in a deposition about what celebrity sex tapes he wouldn’t publish, one Albert J. Daulerio, another former Gawker editor and the author of a snarky blog post accompanying the Hulkster’s sex tape on the site, is seen saying, “If they were a child.” Under what age? “Four,” he says, and the jury that heard this could no longer entertain any doubts about the sort of people with whom it was dealing.

Comment 2034? Really? (Score 0) 49

President John F. Kennedy announced the goal of "landing a man on the Moon and returning him safely to the Earth" on May 25, 1961, and Apollo 11 landed on the moon July 20, 1969.

So Europe plans to take twice as long as the entire Apollo program took to get to the moon to launch three unmanned probes.

All of this is just moonbeams anyway. By 2034, Europe will be too broke to pay for space probes...

Comment Legally, "hate speech" doeasn't exist (Score 2, Interesting) 253

There's a legal fiction that SJW types and their fellow-travelers like to promulgate that the First Amendment doesn't cover "hate speech." This decision says that argument is false:

A law found to discriminate based on viewpoint is an “egregious form of content discrimination,” which is “presumptively unconstitutional.” A law that can be directed against speech found offensive to some portion of the public can be turned against minority and dissenting views to the detriment of all. The First Amendment does not entrust that power to the government’s benevolence. Instead, our reliance must be on the substantial safeguards of free and open discussion in a democratic society.

The justices further noted that "speech that some view as racially offensive is protected not just against outright prohibition but also against lesser restrictions."

Free speech cannot be prohibited, or even restricted, just because SJW types find it "offensive."

Submission + - Supreme Court unanimously rules there's no such thing as "hate speech" (battleswarmblog.com)

Nova Express writes: Today the Supreme Court unanimously reaffirmed that, when comes to the First Amendment, there’s no “hate speech” exemption. "The idea that the government may restrict] speech expressing ideas that offend strikes at the heart of the First Amendment....A law that can be directed against speech found offensive to some portion of the public can be turned against minority and dissenting views to the detriment of all."

Submission + - He didn't give police his iPhone pass code, so he got 180 days in jail (miamiherald.com)

schwit1 writes: A Hollywood(FLA) man must serve 180 days in jail for refusing to give up his iPhone password to police, a Broward judge ruled Tuesday — the latest salvo in intensifying legal battles over law-enforcement access to smart phones.

Wesley Victor, and his girlfriend had been ordered by a judge to produce a pass code to phones suspected of containing text messages showing their collusion in an extortion plot.

Victor claimed he didn’t remember the number. He prevailed.

On Tuesday, Miami-Dade Circuit Judge Charles Johnson ruled that there was no way to prove that Victor actually remembered his pass code, more than 10 months after his initial arrest. Johnson declined to hold the man in contempt of court.

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