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Comment Re:Hyperbole stew (Score 1) 506

I've always seen "hate us for our freedoms" to be a "true patriot" line: It's something that the authoritarians and/or warmongers bring out for the dimwitted masses to excuse whatever bullshit our government is trying to do at the moment. Everyone with critical thinking skills knows differently.

Sadly, it seems that latter group comprises only a simple majority of American voters, not a significant one.

Comment Re:I don't get it either. (Score 1) 437

Out goes the moderations, then.

it affects the 10% Christian populations of those countries and other religions

It does affect them, by giving them a special exemption:

(b) Upon the resumption of USRAP admissions, the Secretary of State, in consultation with the Secretary of Homeland Security, is further directed to make changes, to the extent permitted by law, to prioritize refugee claims made by individuals on the basis of religious-based persecution, provided that the religion of the individual is a minority religion in the individual's country of nationality. Where necessary and appropriate, the Secretaries of State and Homeland Security shall recommend legislation to the President that would assist with such prioritization.

This is, in practice, Christians. (Muslims are the majority, other religions are almost non-existent in the given countries.)

(*) And for the record, Section 212(f) of the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1952:

And, for the record, Section 202(a) of the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965 :

No person shall receive any preference or priority or be discriminated against in the issuance of an immigrant visa because of his race, sex, nationality, place of birth, or place of residence

Emphasis mine. I haven't read the whole 1965 version, but unless there's a provision that creates exceptions for INA1952 212(f) I believe the 1965 version takes precedent. (There are exceptions to 202(a), but deal mainly with things like immediate relatives of citizens getting preference.)

Obama used this same law at least six times between 2010 and 2014 against people in Iraq, Iran, Syria, and Crimea without even a whimper from the ACLU, ADL, John McCain, Gender Netural Graham, Chuck You Schumer, Hillary, Mark Zuckerberg, Hollywood elites, or the establishment globalist media.

I'm a little fuzzy on the others, but at least the Iraq action in 2011 was in response to an actual threat, was not nearly as broad (applying only to pending applications), and wasn't even a proper ban (just a delay of approval while they re-evaluated the process.)

But, by all means, continue playing down 45's bullshit by shouting "but the other guy!"

Comment Re:Bring broadband to all Americans... (Score 1) 292

Huh, thank you for telling me about that. I was completely unaware of the separate category (the Wiki page I linked to doesn't bother to mention what the "Presidential Memoranda" column is about...).

That's not very transparent.

Agreed. I was quite upset with Obama's failure in transparency, even before this.

Comment Re:Bring broadband to all Americans... (Score 1) 292

"I've got a pen and a phone" was how he phrased that whole "fuck Congress, I can do what I want" thing.

Which he did only well after Republicans in Congress said "fuck Obama". And even then Obama's Executive Order count (I presume that's what you're referring to, anyway) is still one of the lowest in the last century, by raw or per year.

If you want to talk about people who say "fuck Congress", President Trump has so far signed 12 executive orders, which makes his rate 285.7 per year, the second highest in the last century (to FDR's first). This will likely decrease greatly after the first 100 days, of course, but who knows what the future will hold?

In other words, this sort of thing has been something that the Feds have been doing for about 80 years now. get over it.

Okay, now I think you may have replied to the wrong comment. If Pai succeeds, excellent! I have no opposition to the general idea. My laughter was on the idea that the government (present or future) would reign in the abuses from entrenched monopoly ISPs when they (the Gov) have completely failed to do so for at least the last 20 years.

Comment Re:Get over it! (Score 1) 1560

Notably, when the Democrats held the majority they completely failed to lift a finger towards improving the Electoral College and our voting systems in general, despite the fire and brimstone they raised over the results in 2000. No, once they were back on top the system was suddenly A-OK, and its only now that we have an outcome that didn't go their way that they start frothing at the mouth over it once again.

But you won't see any of them actually take action to improve it, should they ever regain the majority.

Comment Re:Divided Country? (Score 1) 1560

Which is why a major effort of any politician who wants to "unify" America should be moving away from winner-takes-all, first-past-the-post voting, and replace gerrymandering with some sort of algorithm to draw district lines. It will lead toward far better representation of the people as a whole; while they might not be happy that "their" candidate lost, they will be content because their #2 pick is in office (and, hey, whadda know, that also happened to be the #2 pick for most people on the "other" side) and we can function much better as a country.

That won't happen, of course, because Democrats and Republicans are just roughly equal halves of the Establishment Party and our broken election system enables that party to remain in power.

Comment Re:Down with big business... lingo (Score 1) 150

"Going/moving forward" is not the same as "soon", it means "starting immediately* and continuing until informed otherwise".

I normally try to avoid jargon that spawns from Management, but I find "going forward" to be softer/indirect language than "from now on" which I take to be more authoritative/direct. If I managed people I would use "from now on" in conversations with them when I want to firmly set/change something, but when communicating with other people (particularly external contacts) and I want them to start doing something I use "Going forward, please blah blah blah", a half request/half command.

Despite all that, in the context of the sentence in the summary I agree it's misused. The meaning of the sentence doesn't change without the phrase, and it would be more useful to have an "effective immediately" or "effective $DATE" for clarity.

* even if it doesn't apply to an immediate task or project

Comment Re:As if this is new (Score 1) 370

Yeah, there are already people who make a living doing that (I recall that Wired did a story on them many years ago), but it's a very small group, like professional mimes. I'm talking about the majority of entire cities being used in testing, and without silly things like "ethics panels", "FDA regulation", or "palliative care".

Comment Re:As if this is new (Score 1) 370

Control.

At insane income rates money is a means. For most people it's as an end, how they survive, but past a certain point it the ends are nicely wrapped up and become afterthoughts. There's a lot you can buy with ever-increasing money supply, but at some point you can also afford or already own most of these things. Thereafter, the point of money is the pursuit of that which cannot be directly purchased. For many this takes a philanthropic route, donating unneeded portions of their wealth or income to their charities or goals of choice. For some--and, I think the majority in future filled with AI workers but no universal income--it's about control.

There are many ways to control people directly with money, by paying them to fulfill various desires. It's surprising what some will do for money, particularly if they are in desperate need. But a single person could reign heavily over a thousand people by being a CEO of some busybody company. Control their schedules, who they meet with (and when and where and for how long), what they spend the majority of their day doing, and you don't even have to pay them that much. The rich will control the government, of course, and so worker protections go out the window and now all employees are considered always on the job (and thus under that much more control.) This is a more direct control than simply paying them to do whatever (it's surprising what people will endure to stay employed, things beyond what most people would be willing to do if told directly, at least at a moderate income level.)

I think this outcome is far preferred by the lawful-evil rich, as opposed to maintaining small personal armies to stave off riots and raids (an army that could turn on them), or being forced to share the money they "earn" with the government (who then redistributes it to the people.)

(If you think that sounds soul-sucking, an alternative but not-completely-exclusive outcome is that common people are used as lab rats in medical trials for drugs and procedures that keep the rich fit, healthy, and grant longevity.)

Comment Uh (Score 1) 449

Another said that Windows 10's spyware aspects made him give up on his beloved PC platform and that he will use Linux and Android devices only from now on

Sounds like someone is in for a rude awakening about Android. (I think Win10 is worse than stock Android re:data collection, but if your primary concern is privacy...)

As to the question itself: It absolutely is, for varying definitions of "cool" and "fun". I'm a 90s kid (so many things I have to remember) so I didn't cut my teeth on a C64, but as a youngling I got sucked in by the potential of PCs and what I could do with them after discovering epic tools like "dir" at 12. (Oh, and playing Zork.) There's still a tremendous amount of potential, but a lot of us have turned what were once hobbies into jobs and started specializing in a sub-aspect of computing. The former can easily deprive the "cool" of the hobby if your job is a negative aspect of your life (and thus whatever "computing" you do is associated with that negativity), and the latter limits the "fun" because the simple problems are mostly rote at this point and discovery means chasing the long-tail, if at all.

In my case, a major lure for general computing—that made it "cool" or "fun"—was that discovery. While I've lost my own wonder and interest (for varying reasons), there seems to be as much uncharted territory now as there was in the 80s/90s: augmented/virtual reality, Internet-of-Things, alternative inputs (particularly in motion controls and applied to VR), biomedical, brain interface (both direct and indirect, such as simple headgear that react to brain waves). Computers are far cheaper and more powerful than they were, with software that can allow Joe American to start basic 3D modelling with something he picks up at Best Buy.

Computing itself isn't necessarily static: I think we're going to see computers in general converge, where either your phone/tablet is also your main PC, which, when docked, has more processing power (Nintendo's upcoming Switch is reported to work this way, in fact) or "always-on"+"cloud" means your various devices are just UI for data on the internet. Regardless of which direction you prefer, either will be enough of a shift to provide tons of creation/discovery potential driven by demand.

A point of general agreement was that big tech companies in particular don't treat computer users with enough respect anymore.

A bunch of assholes deciding against consumer interests (and then consumers rewarding them for such) doesn't deprive computing of being "cool" or "fun"; it just means you may have to seek alternative platforms depending on the aspects of computing that drive you and how you want to enjoy that.

Comment Re:I actually don't remember that (Score 1) 534

I had a "discussion" with someone who claimed it was a hoax to sell energy-efficient appliances. I mean, Poe's Law, but he appeared to be100% serious. Claimed there was no evidence at all for AGW, though he seemed to acknowledge that humans produce the vast majority of CO2 and that the Earth is getting warmer. He tried to say it was 100% due to the Sun, and I couldn't get him to give a definitive answer as to if he thought CO2 trapped heat.

Then he said that all links and websites are just opinion and can't be used to provide any evidence (despite trying to do so himself, failing to read his own links.) If I thought I'd get a half-coherent answer I would have asked what he would accept as evidence; probably be something like "show me a cloud made of nothing but CO2 reflecting heat" (and then, because he couldn't "see" the heat, it still wouldn't count.)

I know that intelligence tests for voting are bad in multiple ways but, damn, people like him make me wonder...

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