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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.

Comment Re:In Other Words (Score 1) 418

Yes, there may be some extrapolations of the underlying math that might point in such a direction, but at the moment, it's simply a cool-sounding idea with absolutely no experimental evidence at all.

There is a big difference between a scientific theory with a mathematical model that has been demonstrated to have predictive utility via experimental evidence being used to make predictions of a multiverse via extrapolation and... God.

Granted Newton's Laws were also found to be wrong outside of a limited domain and break when applied to the very very large, small or fast. So it is certainly still possible that the multiverse is an equally wrong extension of a theory outside of the range of our experimental evidence.

I don't rule in or out the existence of God (or The Almighty Programmer) via science, because science is rooted in the natural world. If that natural world we observe isn't natural or the rules can be arbitrarily changed by an outside will or outside force then science is possibly ill suited as a tool of understanding that metaverse or maybe it still is applicable... impossible to say either way if everything we think, say, observe and feel could be the product of a will that is not our own rather than the natural progression of an observable natural world.

Comment Re:Companies doing fine; not comsumers (Score 1) 319

A monopoly (or duopoly, triopoly) ISP should not be able to give preference to any of "their" content. They shouldn't control both the pipes and the content.

And on second thought maybe the FCC shouldn't have been in the business of trying to prevent illegal anticompetitive business practices through technical regulations. If only we had an agency of government that was supposed to work to prevent this sort of collusion in restraint of trade... and false advertising of a service that isn't being provided... Oh wait the FTC.

Or the various municipalities should be ensuring that "franchise" license agreements aren't screwing over their customers. All it would take is some large enough subset of municipalities to include net neutrality clauses to ensure that customers aren't getting defrauded.

Comment Good and evil (Score 1) 125

Like all new technology it will be used for good and evil. "The city will provide the data to entrepreneurs and students to develop applications." Have to have faith in the majority of people to use the technology for good and to punish those that use it for evil. However, if the information is in the hands of just a few then there won't be effective oversight and it will be used for evil. What they need to do is level the playing field and provide the data as close to real time as is technically possible to anyone that wants it. Not selectively, not piecemeal, not months later... real time.

Comment The cult of innovation (Score 3, Interesting) 361

Innovation, invention and discovery are certainly important and can allow us to more easily or efficiently address needs, but when we are talking about "innovation" or innovative people most of the time what we are really talking about is creative problem solving using already existing methods, knowledge and technology.

It is easy to look at IT and see how real innovations have contributed to a transformation of many aspects of society over the last half century and then fall into the cult of innovation as a sort of belief in perpetual innovation as a means for the betterment of society. But both a longer view and more critical view of our day to day society should confirm the importance of understanding that you already have many of the technological tools and methods needed to address today's needs. And a good application of those already known technological tools and methods should be the priority of problem solving rather than innovation merely for the sake of innovation.

Surely there is always a need for innovation, especially in medicine where virus are constantly evolving to maximize their contagion and our existing tools need to be adapted to new challenges. But in other technology areas the problem domain does not change as remarkably over time. And already developed technology is well suited for most day to day challenges.

Sure you can probably cite a thousand different examples where today's technology is inadequate to a problem or need, but I think the point is that it is no less noble or worthy to address the tens of thousands of those other problems and human needs that can be worked on without the need for any fundamental innovation.

Comment Re:Xenophobia (Score 1) 271

Sounds like free market competition to me.

H1Bs are not "free market", since it is difficult (although not impossible) for the visa holder to change employers. There should be several reforms to the H1B program:
1. The workers should be able to change employers at will.
2. Instead of a lottery, there should be an auction. That way the quotas go to the companies that need/value them the most, and it is doubtful they could be used for "cheap labor".

At the very least "Guest worker" programs should pay people 10% or 20% more than prevailing wages, let people change jobs "by right" without any additional paperwork and be capped well below demand and auctioned off according to the highest salary.

But much better to let people that actually want to come here and be Americans stay here as either green card holders and put them on a path to citizenship. There are already far too many people living here that are living in a society apart from the rest of us. Immigration has been the life blood of this country... not non-immigrant guest worker programs.

Students who come here for 4, 5 and 6 years for education should be a priority as they are usually already well socialized in American Society.

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