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Comment Re: Two Words (Score 1) 350

The idea of sculping the iceberg to reduce drag is interesting... perhaps less like a sphere and more like a hull would be a bit more efficient. Though it might happen naturally in warmer waters as the iceberg is pushed North and the rougher edges melt away.

Also, the melting ice itself might reduce drag.

Would need to just go ahead and do it once with the ice berg as-is to practically baseline the efficiency.

Comment Re:This, and we know it still happens (Score 4, Insightful) 122

The whole point of the massive NSA datacenter in Utah is that they collect _everything_. The argument from the NSA and Federal Government was that they would only look at data where they had a warrant. Our argument back was that there is no way to ensure data is only viewed by warrant, especially when they were looking at ways of cataloguing data they could see, and trying to crack encryption on what they could not.

We were right, they were dishonest. Nothing new in terms of Government abusing power, and nobody should be surprised that the more we give them the more they abuse.

Since the hardware is already in place to copy all traffic to the NSA, law changes which impact collection of data would have to tackle that particular issue. Good luck with that. ISPs and Telecom providers get paid massive tax dollars to provide the service, so you know that they won't complain.

Well said. I would just add that beyond the practical privacy concerns of people actually snooping on other people for illegitimate purposes there is an important principle of constitutional law that the government is required to have a specific warrant to perform a search. And that making copies of data and in fact scanning that data in the first place to see if it is relevant to a variety of ongoing surveillance activities is itself a search.

It isn't merely the potential for search of the data without warrant after the government has collected it that is the issue. In fact if the data was legally collected and the government has it, then why shouldn't it be available for any legitimate investigation? Any legally collected data should be available to investigators. The problem is that it isn't legally collected data.

If it were just a practical privacy issue then you are already exposed to numerous companies that are collecting, analyzing, storing your communications for a variety of purposes that you might not want to specifically agree to, but might be somehow covered in a customer agreement.

The other big thing that I see as unconstitutional is that the government is effectively not allowing companies the option of an enforceable contract with their customers that it will require a specific warrant to divulge their communications to the government. The big telecoms got that as legal cover, but also to head off competitor companies marketing privacy as something they could legally deliver.

In the US, at least, privacy in your communications against unconstitutionally broad government surveillance isn't an option companies can even offer their customers and business partners because the agreement is made legally unenforceable with no opportunity to seek damages for contract violations against telecom providers under the Patriot Act. I should be allowed to provide customers with a privacy agreement in return for compensation that if I violate it would allow them to seek damages in court.

So the government is unconstitutionally interfering in what should be a lawful privacy contract between telecoms and their customers and business partners.

Comment Re: I don't mind paying taxes (Score 1) 198

What really bothers me is that your "values" and sense of "fairness" are keeping a trillion dollars from coming back into the US economy.

Go ahead and tax the rich people with a higher progressive tax bracket... But the US economy needs all that capital from corporate profits. Let it be taxed as income when it gets put back to work in the US economy.

Comment Re: How is this currently legal? (Score 1) 128

Yes it appears the Obama administration abused it's surveillance powers... But I haven't heard Trump say anything about curtailing those powers in his administration. One thing to be indignant... And then another to tighten rules to ensure that the abuse of power won't happen again in any administration.

Comment Re: How is this currently legal? (Score 2) 128

Good points. Perhaps ceding that non-citizens have no rights is not the right starting point.

Government should get a warrant.

Government should also respect people's right to privacy and end all drug prohibition so most searches are not needed in the first place and won't find any "contraband" being smuggled. But that is another discussion.

Comment Re:The truth (Score 2) 416

tends to have a liberal bias.

Get over it.

I think calling it a "liberal bias" in the first place is very misleading. It is a Democratic Party bias of the big city press. Born of cultivated political and personal relationships made in big cities controlled by the Democratic Party which also happen to be the centers of media markets.

I've personally seen this play out where reporters from the main press outlets are given office space inside city hall and the state government and clearly develop a symbiotic relationship with the political establishment. The only time reporters turn on the powers that be in City Hall is when they see blood in the water and see the prospect of a new patron taking over.

Comment Re: "We're" loosing it? (Score 1) 444

But here is the rub... one of the major fake news promoters was interviewed recently and made it clear he was trying to make up stories that would make right wingers look like fools... to miss this is to miss one of the major goals of this sort of fake news.

Creating the noise of fake news distracts from real critical thinking, real analysis and undermines real debate on issues. And then the next wikileaks dump suddenly gets drowned out by conspiracy theories more bizarre than the actual conspiracy.

Bottom line is that there are real problems in society that need to be sorted out, that could be sorted out by reasonable people and far too many people that profit and make a living on perpetuating problems.

Comment Re: "We're" loosing it? (Score 1) 444

That is a cop out. Just accepting what "the intelligence services" conclude without any actual evidence... when actual UN inspectors on tge ground were visiting sites and not finding anything left of the weapons programs... the intelligence analysts conclusions came down to "Well Saddam used chemical weapons before so he must still have some" and that was reported as fact.

Our free press seems only interested in being intellectually honest and critical of the party line when it suites their own political agenda.

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