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Comment Re:Makes complete sense (Score 1) 176

That's because when they take off they jump backwards. I use a grabbing motion coming up from behind the fly. My hand being 2 or 3 inches above the surface. The fly jump up to take off and quite often ends up in my fist. Trying to squish them can be tricky so a lot of time I just throw them at a hard surface to stun them and then finish them off afterwards.

The very best method to kill flies I have found is with a spray bottle of some kind of glass and surface cleaner. Something like Windex will work, or something stronger with chlorine/bleach will kill them faster. It's better to use the kind of bottle that lets you adjust the output from spray to stream. Stream is more effective but the mist will work if you get close enough. Give it a few practice squirts and you can easily refine your aim (if you ever do any target practice, this will be trivial). Nail 'em with a single squirt and they drop, crawl around a bit, and die. A single shot and they don't get back up. A follow-up shot makes them die faster, though I can't help think that this must be a very nasty and unpleasant fluid in which to drown.

It's much easier than trying to squash them with your hand and less unsanitary too, though definitely less sporting.

Comment Hmm (Score 5, Insightful) 177

This new position is focused on the future, designed to directly enhance decision making

Does "shut down this agency permanently and don't replace it with anything similar" count as an enhancement?

If we want to fight terrorism we could always stop installing dictators and manipulating the affairs of other nations.

Comment Re:judges are pissed NSA lied to get their okay (Score 5, Insightful) 576

Judges have ruled that the NSA could do these things - when the NSA lied to the judges about what they were doing and how. Some of those judges are pretty pisses off now that they know how the subpoenas were abused, so I wouldn't think think those rulings definitively say what NSA is doing is in fact legal. The judges who made the rulings don't think they approved what was actually going on.

This happened because to become a judge, one must generally be a "believe in the system" type. This is why judges will automatically take the word of a police officer over yours, being impressed by the fact he/she is a "sworn officer", because this type of mentality doesn't consider that cops and other members of government could lie to get what they want. So now it finally bit the judge(s) and made them look bad, feel a little angry? It's been doing that to regular citizens for a long time now.

Comment Re:Gotta be some kind of compensation. (Score 1) 273

Do you know why NBA players get so much money?

Because we as a society have fucked up priorities and overvalue things that are relatively meaningless?

The doctor who finally cures cancer will be anonymous to the general public compared to an NBA player, an NFL player, or the latest shallow whore who can (somewhat) sing with auto-tune.

I don't argue with your logic about the ratio of players to fans. Rather, I address why there would be so many fans and so much money to be extracted from them. Personally, I just can't get that worked up about other people playing a game, the outcome of which won't affect my life one way or another. I certainly can't identify with that team as though it were an extension of my ego, saying "we won" when I contributed no effort.

Now get off my lawn.

Comment Re:IETF is better than NIST, how? (Score 2) 75

Politics and public reaction are not rational.

More like, the media discovered long ago that sensationalism sells better than rational thinking because emotions are much easier to manipulate. Being mostly followers who have been conditioned not to think critically, the public and thus the public's representatives simply follow.

Comment Re:IETF is better than NIST, how? (Score 1) 75

My point is that the reason US pols started getting antsy had nothing to do with how many people were killed, it was the way they were killed.

Yes. When the news reports about the chemical weapons first started coming out, they kept making a big deal out of this. I kept wondering, "and if those people had been shot instead, would that make you feel better?" Seems I'm not the only one to think of that.

Comment Re:In the US (Score 3, Interesting) 562

Anyone who advocated a national language and tried to institute the teaching of the language would be called racist.

That's hilarious because a non-racist would assume that all races are equally able to learn, read, and speak a national language. The person claiming a national language is "racist" is implying that some races are less able than others to cope with such a change, which is itself a racist belief. It is amazing to me the way this is so often glossed over and not pointed out.

This then would have the effect of raising the overall standard of living of the entire country...

I don't know about all of that, but being able to understand one another because there is a standard is how you maintain a nation long-term, without having it spilt into factions of people who see each other as different from the rest, only to become Balkanized over time.

NOTE: this is not a joke... It is a sad truth in the US today!!!

Another sad truth: political power is gained and expanded by dividing people, not by uniting them. The extreme hypersensitivity encouraged by identity politics and the obsession with group identity has two major effects. One, it encourages emotional, irrational thinking which helps prevent the sort of attention and scrutiny those in power don't want. Two, it produces division and squabbling over matters that by design cannot be resolved, creating much distraction, wasting much energy, and most of all allowing politicians to keep (and expand) power by promising to protect each group from all of the others. It's classic divide-and-conquer.

Inventing "racists" where they do not actually exist is never going to lead to the sort of color-blind society that judges people by the content of their character. "I want to be the white man's brother, not his brother-in-law", Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Comment Re:Thanks Mr Schneier (Score 1) 397

I don't have time for leakers, traitors and narcissistic wreckers like Snowdon and Assange. And it has been easy for me to dismiss their statements, and those of their camp followers out of hand.

For me, having somebody as credible as Bruce Schneier take such a stand, changes everything. He's not just some criminally insane lunatic like Julian Assange, or some spotty kid out to make a name for himself -- he's an erudite, wise man with a proven track record of good judgement. If credentials matter -- then I think that having Schneier weigh in on this side of the political debate will have a major impact on people who are formerly undecided about the issue, including myself.

Really? Because I make these decisions based on the facts of the matter, not the popularity of those involved. I suppose during the early 1500s you'd have sided with Tolosani against Copernicus because the latter was not considered credible (and by some, heretical - our version of a "crackpot") during his time.

I scrutinize the message, not the messenger. I doubt you appreciate just how easy it is to demagogue and character-assassinate, not to mention that both of those are carried out with emotional arguments/manipulation and other propaganda techniques. Reason is much more difficult to twist; facts are even more difficult still.

I'm not trying to be rude, but the mentality you demonstrate (which was instilled in you) is the major reason why society has as many faults as it does today.

Comment Re:No complaints about the NSA here (Score 1) 397

There is no reason that secure can't also be user friendly, the illusion that secure must also be difficult is part of the problem.

People don't send just send lolcats through my email they get order confirmations when they purchase something and other sensitive data. A low pay NSA Analyst could become and identity thief just as easily as any other low pay employee that can gain access to your information. So keep it secured.

If I were a guest in your house, well you wouldn't be charging me, so I'm not a guest and as a paid service I have expectations.

I appreciate and admire your intentions here, but the sad fact is: you cannot reason with this kind of narrow-mindedness.

Although, I would be glad to be proven wrong on this one.

Comment Re:That's cute, kid. (Score 1) 164

They aren't introducing me

Is that how you describe the spying, manipulation, and dehumanization in which they engage? You rate them on how effectively they do so and express your disappointment that their art has not yet been perfected as a science?

Sometimes I suspect that this civilization is lost.

Comment Re:what's the point (Score 1) 123

what's the point of surveillance when everyone knows that you are doing it?

You never read 1984 or you didn't fully comprehend it.

The message is, "you will fall in line, or we WILL find you". The patient and therefore smart move is to set up the surveillence infrastructure first, get people used to the idea, and then become a more oppressive government. The only power governments have over their own citizens is against people who break the law.

Comment Re:Precribing (Score 4, Interesting) 340

You should never seek to make yourself helpless or at the mercy of people that know more than you do.

When you have a culture in which average people believe thinking and reasoning is a terrible burden to be avoided or offloaded at every opportunity, you naturally will observe the kind of dependency and vulnerability you point out here. It leads to people who don't want to be involved in decisions that drastically affect their own lives.

Somehow there arose this myth that you either know nothing at all, or must be a fully trained expert, that no intermediate level of knowledge, no amount of reference could ever be useful.

Comment Re:My favorite part (Score 5, Insightful) 271

It amazes me that conservatives have given Obama such a free pass on all of this so far. Hopefully that changes now.

It amazes me how you or anyone else can see this happen time and time again and still believe that we have two distinct parties.

Jefferson knew what a two-party system would become and specifically warned against it. At some point they both realize they can play the voters in the middle, sort of like "good cop, bad cop". For maximum effect, switch roles once in a while. Then people support a given one for irrational, emotional, tribal, "my team" reasons and stop thinking critically. Take a hard look at the world of US politics and tell me this isn't exactly what's happening. Then make the next tiny leap and understand that someone definitely benefits from this, and it is not accidental.

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If the aborigine drafted an IQ test, all of Western civilization would presumably flunk it. -- Stanley Garn

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