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It's funny.  Laugh.

Journal Journal: Cute, there. 7

I see someone just found my comments which were foolishly mod-bombed. They then moderated them "funny". I suspect whoever did that knew that a "funny" mod does not move karma.

What they might have not realized, though, was that the mod bomber didn't move my karma either.

If people want to waste their mod points on my comments, they can certainly do so. If they think that it will change my karma here, they are sadly mistaken.
User Journal

Journal Journal: Gunfail: another 100% preventable and senseless death

At least people are paying a little bit of attention to this case of an 18 month old boy killed by an unsecured gun. Unfortunately there is no indication that the irresponsible idiot who owned the gun will face any consequences for his stupidity.

Apparently, in Arizona, the right to carry weapons wherever one pleases is more important than the right to not be senselessly killed at a young age as a result of some shithead's inability to keep their weapon secured.
User Journal

Journal Journal: Bombs away, bitches 5

... some mod bombers never learn. To my mod bomber, just consider this. If I cared enough to report your mod-bombing, you wouldn't have mod points anymore. You might get your jollies off of seeing me mock you publicly, but you aren't accomplishing anything more than that.
Democrats

Journal Journal: Even Democrats in the Senate are Incompetent 24

Senate Democrats voted on a letter asking for the Washington Redskins to change their name. This is, of course, a total waste of time as the team can do whatever they want and the Senate doesn't have any way to change that.

Is this a total waste of time? Of course. Is it a bigger waste of time than launching yet another investigation into Benghazi? Not even remotely. It also costs nowhere near as much money as what republicans have already spent drumming up support for their silly witch hunt.

Hence, if the Senate Democrats want to learn how to waste American time and money on the pursuit of meaningless political points, they need to look across the hall.
Republicans

Journal Journal: Is the GOP on an Intentional Suicide Mission? 31

Any reasonable person knows that there is no good reason from this point for the GOP to push the Benghazi conspiracy any further. They have assembled another committee in the house to investigate the attack. However, if impeachment is their goal - and it certainly appears to be - then they have basically zero chance to achieve that. The reason I say that is because the time has already run out for that to lead to a successful impeachment of President Obama before his presidency ends in 2017. There is no chance that the committee could come up with sufficient charges in time for the pre-trial and trial to happen before then.

This means that in the most favorable - by which I mean most damning possible conclusions from the house committee - situation, the GOP will still be wasting taxpayer time and money when the 2016 election happens. In the - more likely based on what previous investigations have shown - scenario where the committee does not produce something worthy of an impeachment hearing, the GOP will have to face the fact that they wasted millions (if not billions) of taxpayer dollars and a great amount of time on what is clearly a political witch hunt.

Similarly, while conservatives are almost uniformly (and mostly alone) convinced that Obama himself somehow caused the Benghazi attack (presumably as part of his NWO aspirations, by use of his time machine and weather control technology), they also seem convinced of one other thing - that Hillary Clinton will be the democratic nominee for POTUS in 2016. Frankly I am not convinced that she will win the nomination, but that is a different matter. More so I am left to wonder if the GOP fears Clinton so much that they have actually decided to throw the 2016 election in the interest of trying to start framing a better 2020 campaign now.
User Journal

Journal Journal: This time I don't mind the "redundant" mod 50

I see the "Linux Sucks" video made the front page (a few days late) here on slashdot today. Along with many others, I chimed in that the trend of videos instead of text is fucking stupid (and honestly an insult to our intelligence). I was happy to see that many others made similar complaints over the matter.

Not that I expect it to make a difference, as people still seem to get jollies posting videos of themselves saying crap on youtube regardless, but it is good to see that I'm not alone on the matter. I'm just waiting now to see if this hack is running for office and got the shitty idea that way.
Republicans

Journal Journal: Heritage Foundation, In Their Own Words 44

Smitty has recently linked to a Heritage Foundation page trying to distance itself from the mandate in the health insurance act of 2010. It isn't a surprise that they would want to try to make it look like the mandate wasn't their idea, as it is wildly unpopular with their base. What is surprising, though, is how epically they failed in distancing themselves from it.

For example (from the actual article):

I held the view that as a technical matter, some form of requirement to purchase insurance was needed in a near-universal insurance market to avoid massive instability through âoeadverse selectionâ (insurers avoiding bad risks and healthy people declining coverage). At that time, President Clinton was proposing a universal health care plan, and Heritage and I devised a viable alternative.

My view was shared at the time by many conservative experts, including American Enterprise Institute (AEI) scholars

That rather plainly shows that indeed people in the Heritage Foundation wanted a mandate. Reading on...

the version of the health insurance mandate Heritage and I supported in the 1990s had three critical features. First, it was not primarily intended to push people to obtain protection for their own good, but to protect others. Like auto damage liability insurance required in most states, our requirement focused on âoecatastrophicâ costs â" so hospitals and taxpayers would not have to foot the bill for the expensive illness or accident of someone who did not buy insurance.

Isn't that the same kind of "herd mentality" that they are demonizing the democrats over right now?

Second, we sought to induce people to buy coverage primarily through the carrot of a generous health credit or voucher, financed in part by a fundamental reform of the tax treatment of health coverage, rather than by a stick.

And the supreme court ruled that the mandate in the 2010 bill is, indeed, a tax. The stick analogy does not hold here.

And third, in the legislation we helped craft that ultimately became a preferred alternative to ClintonCare, the âoemandateâ was actually the loss of certain tax breaks for those not choosing to buy coverage, not a legal requirement.

... same as above.

So in other words, the Heritage Foundation acknowledges that the mandate in the Health Insurance Industry Bailout Act of 2010 is a facsimile of what they wanted. They can pretend that they somehow did not have a role in the crafting of this lousy bill, but they cannot show that they have not advocated for what it does.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Benghazi? Tell me first about Beirut... 2

The GOP is succeeding in ramping up silly rhetoric and wasteful spending on Benghazi. Yet roughly 30 years ago we faced multiple terrorist attacks in Beirut. As the New Yorker Points out the situation is rather similar; the white house belonged to the opposite party of who held the US house, amongst other things. In Beirut, far more people died, including diplomats, CIA employees, and marines. One CIA analyst was tortured and murdered.

But was Reagan - dear, St. Ronnie - threatened with impeachment? Were members of his cabinet subpoenaed? Was there a whole series of "investigations" launched when the party in the house didn't get what they wanted from the ones released?

No. As the author of the article put it:

If you compare the costs of the Reagan Administration's serial security lapses in Beirut to the costs of Benghazi, it's clear what has really deteriorated in the intervening three decades. It's not the security of American government personnel working abroad. It's the behavior of American congressmen at home.

User Journal

Journal Journal: You gotta have faith, faith, faith

I just realized that the underlying joke my friend was making was actually about faith. Some people like to make decisions based on what can be proven, while others prefer to run by what they know cannot be proven. We have seen the results of the latter for a long time in this country, I really wish we could try for the former for a change.

Just imagine if the federal government - specifically those elected or appointed by those elected- actually reflected the spiritual diversity of our country.
Republicans

Journal Journal: Are there only four types of conservative on slashdot? 10

This is not counting fakes.
  • Won't share their sources or read yours - this type will insist that the sources they use are "so obviously available" that they don't need to offer them to you for reading, regardless of how nicely you ask for them.
  • Will share sources, but won't read yours - this type will share sources (albeit from only a very short list of sources) but has no interest in any sources beyond the ones they find acceptable, so don't bother giving them yours. Similarly, they aren't interested in discussing the sources they share.
  • Will share sources, won't read them, won't acknowledge yours - this type likes headlines and doesn't care if their interpretation of the headline matches the text of the source. Forget about sharing your source with them as they likely won't read your reply anyways.
  • Only one source period - this person adheres to conservatism as a religion that defines all truth. They will quote their one source endlessly and provide you links to unhelpful un-transcribed youtube videos to support their claims. Suggesting that their source is in any way less than 1000% accurate is blasphemy that leads to immediate excommunication, so don't even bother replying to them.

I'm not aware of any currently extant types on slashdot that I have missed. We had some earlier varieties in past years that seem to have since gone extinct, including:

  • Will share their own and read others' sources - last seen in the wild around 2010 or so. Rumored to still exist though no record exists to support that notion.

I must say, I am impressed at how thoroughly at least one fake has infiltrated the camps of at least the first three types. I would not have expected that to be possible.

Security

Journal Journal: Bad hacker - bad, bad, bad (new record) 2

This is a new record for consecutive attempts - and attempts per second - on my server. Some idiot using a Chinese IP address made at least 150,000 attempts on my system (all as root) in less than 4 hours. This was, of course, completely pointless as my system does not allow root logins and returns the same fail to the user who guesses the password correctly as to one who does not.

I'm not real sure why this person gave up, I'm sure they could have let their random password generator run longer. A few times they made 8 attempts per second on my system.

I know, there are plenty of things I can do to prevent this from happening in the future. I could also take the futile action of reporting them to their ISP. Instead I will just leave things as they are and keep laughing at them. I don't have nearly enough bandwidth for them to crash my server with too many requests, and my logs auto rotate in such a way that they can't fill up my hard drives with logs of their attempts either (although it might be time to increase the turnover cutoff by another factor of 10).
User Journal

Journal Journal: Early Pterosaur 8

A fossil of the earliest known Pterosaur flying reptile was found recently in China. Named Kryptodrakon progenitor, it was described in a paper published yesterday in the journal current biology (http://www.cell.com/current-biology/abstract/S0960-9822%2814%2900322-4) (paywalled by Elsevier). A less restrictive summary of the findings is in National Geographic (http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2014/04/140424-pterodactyl-pterosaur-china-oldest-science-animals/).

Possible ancestor to the rest of the Pterosaurid family.

For some reason I cannot submit this to the front page; I tried the submit tool and it tells me I have to wait 5 minutes.

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