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Comment Re:education (Score 1) 306

Replace 'government' with a better word, and you are spot on. I do not see government as something bad. Your or others' implementation might not be good, but government is needed.

I would suggest 'oppressors', as that also would fit for other, non government, groups that have power but equally want a dumb populace. Radical religious groups have the same problems.

Expanding your horizons frees up the mind. People who are not given that chance are fearful. They do not know the world and are afraid. They also do not realize there are different ways to think/do/live. Perhaps not better or worse, just different.

No more smart people means people working in low paying jobs. Combine that with an education system that highly favours an 'elite' clientèle (i.e. the same group of people that are in charge), and you have the old multi-class/-caste system again.
A saying I remember, 'someone worrying about where tomorrows meal will come from has no time to think about rebellion'

Just make sure that you indoctrinate the 'you are free, you are created equal' into the poor as a way to accept their fate.

Btw, this is similar to the tactic the British did in their colonies (it also has a name I cannot remember). All smart people would be shipped off to other colonies to remove them from influencing the local (same 'race') populace. In the other colonies, they presume, they would not be able to cause problems. Gandhi is a prime example.
A similar tactic is also done with troops, but that is going OT.

Education of our children is and should be our PRIMARY goal. Nothing is more important.
"let's make college tuition either free or really low and if you have a country full of whip-crack smart people you have a country the rest of the world will fear."
~ Henry Rollins

If you pay your [sport] coach more then your Maths/[Language]/Science/Arts teachers, you have a problem.

Finally and not to forget, the US imports a large amount of foreign elite students. I read somewhere about 70% are foreign.

Comment Re:It might be an unpopular opinion... (Score 1) 822

No pardon, that would mean what he did was wrong.
If you are a whistle blower that can show that laws were broken, it should not matter how you got the information ('stealing'), the extend of the information ('to much' or even 'not enough'), nor how you made it public ('aiding the enemy'), you did the right thing and thus you should not be the one the law goes after.
It is like someone stealing from a drug boss to expose them. THEY were the one's initially breaking the law. And by logic, their wrong makes your wrong, right!
Anything else would basically give those trying to hide their crimes more ways to cover them up.

And then call it the 'Snowden-Law' (and watch the trolls choke on it).

And it should not be the people, but the government and their employees that have to live by the rule 'if you have done nothing wrong, you should have nothing to hide'.

Comment Re:No, it was the NSA's too (Score 1) 698

Well Syria is different as the power-delta is a lot lower and, compared to many of the western countries, they have not bought into the government's crap.
In the west we seem to have swallowed the governments rhetoric so perfectly that our government can use it as a leverage.
If the government cannot get us to love them, they get us to love the troops, who work for the government. They sell us the whole 9 yards and we fall for it, hook, line and sinker.
And you can be damn sure that they play that card at EVERY friggn chance.

In addition, the rebels are heavily supported from the outside, who support (or not) it for their own reasons.
Plus, they are ONE example and in total the examples are far and few between.

If you take Egypt f.i., the western support for the initial rebellion was low. Mainly because the west wanted Mubarak. After the rebellion, the Muslim Brotherhood (coincidentally the wests favorite) won. The people were not happy and again rebelled, much to the west's dislike.
Had the rebellion not worked, the west would have been fine with the results.

Comment Re:No, it was the NSA's too (Score 1) 698

Perhaps 'populace control' goes a little far, but the real issue is different and has more facets.
On one side, yes, the government wants more control, but what they are doing now is unrealistic. Kinda like trying to find the needle in all the hay stacks.
But the people expect them to 'protect' them, so they have to do something. And look, they can spend all this money. And they give it to contractors, who have that consultant job for the general lined up after his retirement. That contractor also helps the general define all kind of threats that will help get more financing.

The NSA is a bloated mess. Without real oversight ('don't limit our budget or our power or else you will be helping the pedofiles/terrorists/communists') they inmates are running the asylum.

While I agree that the governments are scared of us, I believe the whole 1984 thing is overrated. Back then people thought they needed force and coercion and secret police to control people. The sad fact is, they do not. What real threat would we be to the government? We have guns? Well they have subs and aircraft carriers and tanks and Specter gunships. We might rebel? haha, when was the last time that was ever a threat. Of all the crap that has gone down in the last few decades, when have you seen the last real 'uprising' that could even come close to something that might threaten the government? Nope, we are sheep and we are content to thinking that having the 'freedom' to vote for the two candidates selected for us somehow makes us free. We are more like fish in a tank. We swim around happily, build little nests and have young. We might even get eaten, but hey that is life and if need be, they remove the bad fish that did it. Life goes on. Swim on little fishy.
No, the governments know that they do not have to control us, they just have to give us the illusions that we need. And as long as we are filling the coffers of those that are really in charge, nothing will change.

Comment Re:Solution (Score 1) 752

How about fixing the problems in stead of moving them around? And by fixing I mean doing a complete overhaul, including society.
Release all the 3rd-Strikers. Don't incarcerate people for having trivial amounts of drugs. Then work on real rehabilitation. Focus your justice system fully on the really bad people.
You are caught in a vicious cycle where people are unable to break from. Help them instead of kicking them and leaving them to fend for themselves, as the 'easiest' thing to do is crime.

Comment Re:Remember when... (Score 1) 752

And, as if most of the later 'Communists' or 'Socialist' governments really had to do anything with their names.
It is like what happened after the French revolution, it started up good and then, well people are people and they want power, so the Republic became an Empire and the Communists/Socialists became Dictatorships.
But to keep the people in line, they kept on pushing the 'core values'.

And it seems that we can add Democracies to that list, as they seem to become Corporatocracies/Oligarchies.

Comment Re:Those damn socialist! (Score 5, Insightful) 752

Perhaps the difference is that Europeans do not go overboard, in every aspect. In general we do not have a lot of drug addicts and we surely do not throw them in jail after their 3rd strike. We also try to help them out as far as we can with treatments and support so they generally do not have to fall back to crime to 'just get by'.
You can go to a doctors and they will make sure you get the treatment you need.

Reminds me of the 'If Breaking Bad happened in Canada' pic. Which is not to say we don't have problems, we just try to make sure our jails are full of murderers and thugs and the like, not some poor kid that had a tough break.
And mind you, we also treat our prisoners differently and hold then in a different environment.

I think that fixing the crime and prison problem in the US and many other countries is not just a question of laws and regulations, but about changing your society as a whole.

Comment Re:starshit troopers is still starshit troopers (Score 1) 726

You do know that there are people out there that do not understand satire.
Some people, and these are probably the people they wanted to target, need you to paint the picture so simply and using bright colours to even perceive them.
You need the light-show (i.e. the war scenes) to gain the attention and captivate them.
And you have to have the message so clearly spot on the nose that it will slap them in the face.
Then you might have a chance to show them who they really are.
And if you are really really lucky, they might figure it out.

Finally, after all that, when you ask them what the film was about and they are all excited about the bugs and the awesome space marines, you know that it was still to complex for them.
But then, perhaps so is the colour blue.

Comment Re:self-aware sendup of right-wing militarism (Score 1) 726

How? Because of the Affordable Care Act? That might be as 'left' as you might think.
Otherwise I see little 'move to the left' on part of Obama. The only thing you might put in his favor is that he knows when he is beat and will find alternative routes. f.i. Iraq, Afghanistan, though on the negative he will often simply change the tactics, f.i. more drones, no real change on Iran or Cuba

Comment Re:Committing violence **not** required ... (Score 1) 726

Perhaps it was more about joining 'their group' (i.e. buying into the game). It is all about control. If I want people to work in my interests, I need to get them on my side. I get them on my side by convincing them that it is better for them to be on my side.

When writing the above I was reminded of the 'black lists' of the McCarthy times. If you were not on 'their side' (i.e. communist-haters), you were on the other side and had a lot of problems. So, regardless of what your own opinion was (and contrary to the concepts of an open and free society) you had to tote the line.

Comment Re:Unless, of course, you study the author... (Score 1) 726

Or, that those who make the rules only allow those who join their side to also be allowed to make the rules. Kinda like how f.i. the NSDAP or 'Communist Parties' only would allow those to work/vote that were part of the parties.
Remember, the people in power in SST was the military. So they will make military-centric rules.

The provision with 'active service' is only to avoid internal mutinies and overthrows.

Comment Re:Unless, of course, you study the author... (Score 2) 726

Job != Service
Unless you were conscripted, you willingly joined and thus have a job. Most people who can get better jobs, do.

Let's not create a spin on something to give you a "warm glowing feeling" and ignore the fact that people in the military are, basically, paid mercenaries of the government.

People seem to have this 'hero-worship' complex (or are socially moulded to have one) that just because their government tells them that their mercenaries are some kind of mini-gun wielding saints, the actually believe it.

No, our governments control the military and will it against us if they have to. The soldiers fight for the government, not for us.

Comment Re:Unless, of course, you study the author... (Score 2) 726

And that seems to fully match Heinlein's concept. The MI-Complex needs war to feed it's coffers, so it seeks conflict. Then leave it up to the spin-doctors to find excuses.
Should sound familiar to a lot of people.

Heinlein's SST society does really hit a lot of common ground with war-driven nationalist nations. Be it the post-WW2 US / UK, many IronCurtain of past, the pre-WW2 Fascist nations, and ancient societies like the Roman Empire.
If you were to take Heinlein's book, boil down the different points to their core and seriously try to match up the points with certain countries, you just might be very surprised. Perhaps that is why people 'never really got it', because that would mean they'd have to accept to living in a society similar to what Heinlein was describing.

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