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Comment Trump asks for what US has long done (Score 1) 837

As Glenn Greenwald of The Intercept reminds us, "Governments do spy on each other and do try to influence events in other countries, certainly the U.S. government has a very long and successful history of doing exactly that.". So hearing Americans, particularly Democrats, complain about Trump's request here reminds us the US has unclean hands and about far more important things than distracting us away from the ugliness the Democrats apparently sic on each other to win political races. Some of that increased ugliness includes voter shenanigans (possibly voter suppression) to make it harder for would-be Bernie Sanders voters to vote in the Democratic primary, collusion with news outlets to suppress unfavorable stories, and possible illegality from the DLC. These strike me as far more interesting considering the veracity of the DLC emails remains unchallenged.

The last thing the Democrats really want is people thinking about Hillary Clinton's voting record, or campaign funding sources. That analysis won't go down well with anti-war, pro-universal health care, pro-organized labor, anti-fracking, anti-TPP voters the Democrats seem to be losing. Such discussion might lead these voters to notice that the Democrats are apparently as interested as the Republicans in using a distractionary fear-based campaign against the only competition they're willing to admit to (no talk of Greens or Libertarians, for instance, people might defect or demand inclusive debates).

Comment Re:Why not? (Score 1) 837

In context, with Trump denying the DNC hack was Russia trying to help Trump out, yes, this one can be seen as a very obvious joke. Just because he frequently makes horrific statements doesn't mean he doesn't occasionally also make jokes.

I don't think he's ever claimed that the wall comment was a joke. I don't think he ever will.


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Comment Re:Why not? (Score 0) 837

He was making a f---ing joke. He has brushed off the notion that Russia was doing the hacking in the first place. He made the comment at a press conference intending to ridicule the concept, not via a semi-secret text message to Vladimir Putin.

I'm no Trumpist, I mean, I'm going to vote for Hillary Clinton in November and you have NO IDEA how little I want to do that, but I'm in Florida, so my vote may make a difference between Trump or Clinton, and Trump really is THAT BAD. But, in this one instance, the collective left and political establishment has lost their minds, and apparently their sense of humor.

Comment Democratic Party lying? (Score 1) 675

A video edit comparing what Hillary Clinton claimed to what James Comey claimed after the FBI investigation highlights the distance between the two quite well and puts a fine point on the part where Comey says that if this had been anyone else who did what she did they might not get the same cushy response from the FBI she got.

And keep in mind that the US has very unclean hands here, according to Edward Snowden, former NSA contractor who would know what tools the NSA has available to look into this.

But of course the veracity of the documents leads us to the real story. Nobody claims the DNC emails were faked, just like nobody said the Snowden revelations were untrue. This helps us focus on what those documents show: Bernie Sanders was not lying to us when he said, "I told you a long time ago that theâ"that the DNC was not running a fair operation, that they were supporting Secretary Clinton.", and that he requests far too weak of a solution to remedy the problem (getting rid of Debbie Wasserman Schultz as chair of the DNC). And the emails show us that the DNC were telling amenable media outlets (such as NBC, if I recall correctly) which stories to not publish because they made someone they cared about look bad. Julian Assange's interview on Democracy Now is worth reading, it's quite revealing about how nasty the Clinton campaign is, sourcing the unnamed "experts" who told Robby Mook, Clinton campaign manager, that "Russian state actors broke into the DNC, stole these emails" and "are releasing these emails for the purpose of actually helping Donald Trump".

Comment Re:Cheesy 80's movie excuse (Score 1) 764

I believe "editing" in this context meant "Deciding what emails to publish", not "Changing the content of the published emails", so the DNC releasing the originals wouldn't help.

Wikileaks have made it clear they haven't altered the content of the emails, and the fact real phone numbers and blameless people's names appear in the emails would seem to confirm that (If it turned out they were altered, but Wikileaks left in people's phone numbers, that'd be a spectacular PR own-goal on WL's behalf.)


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Comment Re:Cheesy 80's movie excuse (Score 1) 764

WikiLeaks has shown great interest in anti-US material, and comparatively very little interest in anything that disparages Russia

I agree with much of what you say but this line is just silly. We all know that Putin's Russia is a corrupt, barely democratic regime with a autocratic strongman in charge (an ex-KGB boss no less.)

Leaking evidence that they're terrible would be a waste of time.

Also add to this that Assange is Wikileaks, and Assange has spent the last few years holed up on an embassy in an environment which would be stressful and intimidating even for someone not considered persona-non-Grata by some of the most powerful countries in the world. It's not hard to believe he'd be far more interested in the machinations of a political party whose leadership currently holds the Presidency of the country most likely to lock him in a dungeon for the rest of his life, than memos at a poisoned tip umbrella company owned by Vladimir Putin.

Comment It can be fine... (Score 2, Informative) 530

...but they need to create a standard for the replacement jack first. And no, Bluetooth is not it.

I don't think the 3.5mm jack is actually a panacea. It's limited to a single stereo output, and numerous incompatible hacks have been grafted on to allow it be used for microphone input and for phone or music controls.

But you can't just get rid of it without an adequate replacement at the ready, with cheap adapters available that you can easily just slot onto the end of a 3.5mm jack.

Comment Re:Anything incriminating? (Score 1) 460

it was the *DEMOCRATS* who refused to sit some delegates simply because they were the wrong sex

Yeah, the Democrats have a policy concerning equal numbers of each gender which the Vermont delegation initially violated. Not seeing an example of sexism here, but an attempt to avoid it.

"Racist" is thrown out by the left so often it no longer has any meaning.

I'm pretty sure it does, it's just a sizable number of the right, particularly the alt-right, both understands that "being racist" is considered bad, but that they have no problems with a society that deals black people the short end of the stick, that they have an irrational fear of brown people, and even - in some quarters, most Republicans don't fit into this category, but many on the alt-right do - that they're worried about the influence of Jews.

Comment Re:Anything incriminating? (Score 5, Funny) 460

Dunno, I went through them, and the only emails I saw that looked kinda shady were between her and an apparent long time friend with a pseudonym of "yugedeal@hotmail.com" where she appeared to be orchestrating some attempt to hijack the Republican nomination by having her friend win the nomination. Apparently "Yugedeal" would spout a lot of the kinda racist, sexist, what-liberals-think-Republicans-like crap before the nomination, insulting most of the party's big wigs (leaving them in disarray) while attracting support from the grassroots, and then reveal it was all a hoax the day before the election.

Not sure what came of the plan. The last email in the thread was just a "Good luck today Don!" sent June 16, 2015. I assume from the silence since that nothing came of it.

Comment /. should encourage sharing (Score 4, Insightful) 66

So why not encourage GPL violators ("pirates" too)? Instead we seem to cheer whenever we find a GPL violator.

First, we should understand what the propagandistic term "piracy" really means and understand that meaning as separate from sharing—a friendly, neighborly thing to do. As the GNU Project points out in it's list of terms to avoid on "theft": "In general, laws don't define right and wrong. Laws, at their best, attempt to implement justice. If the laws (the implementation) don't fit our ideas of right and wrong (the spec), the laws are what should change. A US judge, presiding over a trial for copyright infringement, recognized that "piracy" and "theft" are smear-words.". This difference gets to the heart of the problem in your point—you're conflating the legal with the ethical and then trying to get others to view all sharing as copyright infringement and all copyright infringement as equivalent because the law frames things in that way.

We should recognize that the terms of the licenses involved between, say, the GNU General Public License (GPL) and a typical Hollywood movie, are radically different when it comes to doing what friends do: share. One can and should share copies of GPL'd programs. It's easy to do, the GPL is easy to comply with simply by also sharing a copy of the complete corresponding source code of the program at the same time as one shares the binary. By contrast, other famously shared copyrighted items (such as most Hollywood movies) aren't legal to share even if done non-commercially and verbatim. So doing the thing that comes naturally with friends, non-commercial and verbatim sharing, is likely not allowed by that movie's license.

Since you mention the GPL, a free software license written by Richard Stallman, this is somewhat akin to what Stallman describes in his talks about the freedoms of free software specifically freedom #2: the freedom to help your neighbour. That's the freedom to make copies and distribute them to others, when you wish. This comes from a 2006-03-09 talk and you can see how the consideration here is akin to the dilemma one faces should a friend ask for a copy of a Hollywood movie:

Freedom two is essential on fundamental ethical grounds, so that you can live an upright, ethical life as a member of your community. If you use a program that does not give you freedom number two, you're in danger of falling at any moment into a moral dilemma. When your friend says "that's a nice program, could I have a copy?" At that moment, you will have to choose between two evils. One evil is: give your friend a copy and violate the licence of the program. The other evil is: deny your friend a copy and comply with the licence of the program.

Once you are in that situation, you should choose the lesser evil. The lesser evil is to give your friend a copy and violate the licence of the program.

[laughter]

Now, why is that the lesser evil? The reason is that we can assume that your friend has treated you well and has been a good person and deserves your cooperation. The reason we can assume this is that in the other case, if a nasty person you don't really like asked you for help, of course you can say "Why should I help you?" So that's an easy case. The hard case is the case where that person has been a good person to you and other people and you would want to help him normally.

Whereas, the developer of the program has deliberately attacked the social solidarity of your community. Deliberately tried to separate you from everyone else in the World. So if you can't help doing wrong in some direction or other, better to aim the wrong at somebody who deserves it, who has done something wrong, rather than at somebody who hasn't done anything wrong.

However, to be the lesser evil does not mean it is good. It's never good - not entirely - to make some kind of agreement and then break it. It may be the right thing to do, but it's not entirely good.

The only thing in the software field that is worse than an unauthorised copy of a proprietary program, is an authorised copy of the proprietary program because this does the same harm to its whole community of users, and in addition, usually the developer, the perpetrator of this evil, profits from it.

Comment Re:Amazon 'marketplace', wish I could disable it. (Score 3, Interesting) 345

You can't do it account wide, but you can do it on a per-search basis. Near the bottom on the left, once you've chosen a department, you'll see a "Seller" section. Curiously Amazon has itself listed as both Amazon and Amazon.com, I have no idea why.

Comment High-tech users have a lot to learn here (Score 1) 639

There's a lot programmers, sysadmins, and other high-tech people could learn from those who are used to organizing politically for shared ends. Political advocacy is not one of the poorer high-tech person's strengths. There's a streak of undeserved independence in high-tech that doesn't reflect how much people have to work together explicitly for political ends, not dismissing politics as undesirable, unnecessary, or unimportant as you commonly see the high-tech set train each other to espouse.

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