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SXSW: Al Gore Talks Surveillance Culture, Spider Goats

timothy posted about a year ago | from the we-await-your-orders-sire dept.

Privacy 260

Nerval's Lobster writes "Former vice president Al Gore sat down with Wall Street Journal columnist Walt Mossberg at this year's SXSW conference to talk about the future — specifically, what Gore sees as the dangers and opportunities awaiting the planet for the next few years. Gore drilled down into what he referred to as the "stalker economy." The rise of apps such as SnapChat, which allows smartphone users to control how long friends can view messages, is emblematic of people reaching the "gag point" with pervasive recording and surveillance by government and business. "Our democracy has been hacked," Gore also told his audience, referring to the U.S. Constitution as "our operating system." While there's never been a "golden age" of American Democracy, he added, the perils emerging today are new. "If a Congressman or Senator has to spend five hours a day begging special interests or rich people for money," he said, they'll be more concerned about how what they're saying will appeal to those interests—rather than their constituents. In yet another tangent, Gore railed against genetic engineering, including Spider Goats, which are goats with spliced spider DNA that allows them to secrete spider silk along with their milk. The goats breed, extending that trait to future generations. Gore sees such things as a case of science run amok, alternately creepy and scary."

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260 comments

Mmmm (4, Funny)

gagol (583737) | about a year ago | (#43134383)

Spider milk. I wonder what it tastes like...

Re:Mmmm (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43134499)

An upside-down blowjay.

manbearpig! (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43134385)

I'm serial!

Re:manbearpig! (5, Insightful)

ShanghaiBill (739463) | about a year ago | (#43135307)

Al Gore's views on GMO are idiotic. GMO goats are the least of our concern. They don't spread their DNA in windblown pollen like GMO crops, and they have none of the potential dangers of GMO microorganisms. So now we are going to regulate genetic engineering, not on legitimate risks, but on the unscientific "yuck factor"?

democracy hacked? (5, Insightful)

roman_mir (125474) | about a year ago | (#43134429)

The flow of money into the U.S. political system, he argued, and the need by politicians to fundraise has led to special interests gaining undue power.

âoeOur democracy has been hacked,â Gore told his audience, referring to the U.S. Constitution as âoeour operating system.â While thereâ(TM)s never been a âoegolden ageâ of American Democracy, he added, the perils emerging today are new. âoeIf a Congressman or Senator has to spend five hours a day begging special interests or rich people for money,â he said, theyâ(TM)ll be more concerned about how what theyâ(TM)re saying will appeal to those interestsâ"rather than their constituents.

Special interests are inevitable in a system that allows politicians to set the rules for businesses and individuals in the first place. The politicians are the ones that hacked the Constitution, they hacked the Law. They figured out how to remove the chains that were placed upon the government to bind it, to provide it with only limited powers (article 1, section 8). Once the politicians found the way (it was easy once the Republic became wealthy enough due to all the business that thrived under the mostly free market system in the first 124 years of the Republic), just promise the people something for nothing and they will vote for you and will let you do whatever you want to the Law. The politicians turned the Republic into a democracy by promising a bunch of stuff to be given out as subsidies and it was popular, because the promise was to make only a minority of people to pay for it (discrimination against a minority based on different levels of income).

So the more power that the government stole from the people by promising them free stuff, the more lucrative it became for politicians to keep power and the more competitive the field of politics became because it brought with it much more power than it was ever designed to give to the politicians.

Politicians are today's Rock Stars, they live better than the rest of the public, they get all this respect for some reason, they get the best deals on everything (trust me, companies like large banks, credit card companies, even phone companies have lists of 'higher class' people to provide a much better service and not to bug in case they break the rules, and these lists include politicians and their various friends).

It's lucrative to be a politician, and so it is very competitive and it gives so much power that wasn't meant to be there, that's why there is all this money pouring in - those are bribes to leave people alone in many cases.

Re:democracy hacked? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43134561)

Hamilton rooted Freedom with the N&P clause and everything else is history.

Re:democracy hacked? (5, Insightful)

Tokolosh (1256448) | about a year ago | (#43134575)

Bravo! All attempts to limit political contributions are doomed to fail, as the incentives to bypass such limits are too enormous. The only solution is to reduce the power of the government as a whole. This entirely opposite to the policies of both the Democrats and Republicans.

Al Gore himself is a fine example, having incentivized thousands of lobbyists around the world, while stomping around with the carbon footprint of a mastodon.

Re:democracy hacked? (5, Interesting)

roman_mir (125474) | about a year ago | (#43134647)

Definitely [slashdot.org], Al Gore benefited from his political connections many times. Current TV would not have become profitable for him in that sale if he wasn't Gore and didn't have all these political connections (you can't just start a media company and really expect all those networks and channels and carriers to give you access). His fortune became larger also as a result of the 529 Million USD loan (political connections) that gov't gave Fisker car company, and they moved production to Finland, manufacturing gas guzzling (climate change, ha?) luxury 90,000USD cars (man of the people).

Re:democracy hacked? (3, Insightful)

CodeBuster (516420) | about a year ago | (#43135381)

The only solution is to reduce the power of the government as a whole. This entirely opposite to the policies of both the Democrats and Republicans.

The Libertarians have been suggesting this remedy for decades now, but neither the Democrats nor the Republicans seem particularly interested. The Republicans at least pay lip service to smaller and more limited government, but never actually do much to achieve it, while Democrats are openly hostile to even the suggestion of it; It's anathema to them. So our problems with large, powerful and intrusive government are likely to continue and increase in the years ahead as they have for decades now.

Re:democracy hacked? (1)

Shavano (2541114) | about a year ago | (#43134587)

Special interests are inevitable in a system that allows politicians to set the rules for businesses and individuals in the first place. The politicians are the ones that hacked the Constitution, they hacked the Law. They figured out how to remove the chains that were placed upon the government to bind it, to provide it with only limited powers (article 1, section 8). Once the politicians found the way (it was easy once the Republic became wealthy enough due to all the business that thrived under the mostly free market system in the first 124 years of the Republic), just promise the people something for nothing and they will vote for you and will let you do whatever you want to the Law. .

Business really didn't thrive. It was boom and bust all the way. There were multiple deep and sometimes long recessions and depressions. There was also very much not a free market in critical industries. Federal land grants built the railroads and the West -- on land forcibly "liberated" from its previous occupants and owners.

Re:democracy hacked? (2, Insightful)

roman_mir (125474) | about a year ago | (#43134693)

Business really didn't thrive.

- orly? USA was built in that time period. The debts (mostly private) were all paid out as the country became largest manufacturer in the world in that time period. In that time period basically all major cities were built around manufacturing and shipping hubs, the infrastructure was built privately. The 'booms and busts' of the time happened exactly around every incident of gov't meddling with the economy, and of-course the Civil War didn't help matters. And yet, including the War and all the problems, by the beginning of 20th century USA became largest manufacturer, exporter and creditor nation in the world (and it achieved it in even less than that time period, and before it was really just an afterthought to European nations, a large debtor as well).

In that time period millions of people got access to ever cheaper food, clothing, medical help, inventions and innovations were done in USA, people came from all around the world to work there because they saw it as the real land of opportunity specifically because there was no government intervention (especially compared to their home countries).

The banking problems were minor compared to the total disaster that is at hand today, with all the banks being zombies, walking dead, artificially propped up by fake Fed credit. The money of the time was real and gaining in value and prices were going down while more goods were coming on line that never even existed before.

AFAIC comparatively speaking 19th century USA created more wealth and the actual real middle class than 20th century USA (don't get me started on the current century) and all of that was done with much higher 'income inequality' than we see anywhere in the world today, proving that people are really only limited to how much they can produce, save and invest by the political system, not by market itself. The billionaires of today are children compared to the billionaires (taking inflation into account) of the 19th century and everybody's well being and standard of living was actually rising.

Re:democracy hacked? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43134841)

"19th century USA created more wealth and the actual real middle class than 20th century"

Laughably incorrect. This alone makes me doubt all your claims.

Re:democracy hacked? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43135083)

"...and all of that was done with much higher 'income inequality' than we see anywhere in the world today, proving that people are really only limited to how much they can produce, save and invest by the political system, not by market itself..."

I think that capture of the political system by market-based financial interests is built in - that is, inevitable. Income inequality proceeds from this and grows more and more rapidly as technology makes it possible to reallocate wealth essentially instantly. So really, in a de novo economic system (which America pretty much was at its founding) there's a limited time during which people can better their economic station through a merit-based combination of intelligence and hard work. Those who are successful in that process gain the means to, and inevitably do, purchase the machinery of the state and subordinate it to their ideas of what's a good thing to do - that is, to their personal market imperatives. Viz the Koch brothers.

We're living in such a time right now. Recall the 2008 financial disaster that engulfed America and the world, and how the collapse was precipitated by the proliferation of financial instruments (CDOs, subprime mortgages, etc.) that benefited a very small fraction of the population. And note the absolute imperative that our politicians labor under, which is the need to raise money to attain/maintain their offices. And note the rapidly widening income inequality in every economic system - it's only a phase delay in Europe compared to America. AFAICT, short term market interests drive just about every process that matters today. Maybe that's always been true, but it's so very much more effective now due to technology. And it isn't clear to me that those interests lead to stable societies, or long term good outcomes for any but a few.

Re:democracy hacked? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43135237)

" And it isn't clear to me that those interests lead to stable societies, or long term good outcomes for any but a few."
Let me tell you: it doesn't. I'm taking a graduate course called Futures and Options Trading and we learn about the "experts" that think they know it all then shit the bed and have to be bailed out. Most of the biggest fuckups come from assholes only thinking and acting short term but being so sure that the long term will take care of itself somehow. Spoiler alert: it doesn't. Not even fucking close.

Re:democracy hacked? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43134595)

I don't disagree with you overall, but we didn't have this "mostly free" utopian market the first 124 years of our nation. Even forgetting the shenanigans that was happening early on, there was this little dust-up called the American Civil War that was caused primarily buy the north wanting tariffs on goods so local industry could develop (which was expensive, which drove up costs) and the south wanting the goods to be cheap and to not be a captive market for the north.

Re:democracy hacked? (1)

PopeRatzo (965947) | about a year ago | (#43134757)

the American Civil War that was caused primarily buy the north wanting tariffs on goods so local industry could develop (which was expensive, which drove up costs) and the south wanting the goods to be cheap and to not be a captive market for the north

American history, Slashdot style.

You're right about the South wanting "cheap goods" though. They happened to be black and human though.

Forgot some stuff (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43134677)

So the more power that the government stole from the people by promising them free stuff, ...

safety or illusion of safety, securing borders, promoting social 'values', bringing God back, ....

Contrary to what some say, money isn't the only way to 'buy' votes and the "Liberals" and Democrats are not the only ones buying votes. The "Conservative" side does buy votes too, "I'll increase defense spending to protect this country and fight Evil around the World!" - (i.e. you get to keep your at your defense contractor). Although, the Tea Party folks really put a dent in that.

Re:democracy hacked? (4, Insightful)

fustakrakich (1673220) | about a year ago | (#43134689)

Wag the dog.. Business sets the rules.. Government enforces them... Who do you think has the resources to set up a government to begin with? Business and government are not competing interests. They are symbiotic, unable to exist on their own. Together they set up a wonderful system where the slaves actually believe they are free because they can buy lots of trinkets.

Re:democracy hacked? (1)

roman_mir (125474) | about a year ago | (#43134707)

Wag the dog.. Business sets the rules.. Government enforces them...

- not without complicity of the mob. It doesn't happen without implicit and explicit support of the mob who really want their free bread and circuses and are absolutely willing to give up actual freedoms in exchange for a promise of some discrimination against somebody else, as long as they get some of the spoils.

Vast majority of business interests are not represented in gov't, only the close friends of politicians, people that the political system turns into monopolies are really in the position to set the rules. But they can't do that in a system that does not give the politicians all this power and the mob gives the power.

Re:democracy hacked? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43135117)

"Vast majority of business interests are not represented in gov't...":

Citation needed. It's quite clear that when a business interest becomes successful (that is, when it starts to throw off enough money to rise above its competitors and become an economic force in society), it purchases political influence to an increasing degree. The only business interests that are not represented in government are the ones that don't matter.

Re:democracy hacked? (1)

Samantha Wright (1324923) | about a year ago | (#43135197)

Limiting the powers of politicians is not going to help. The friends of politicians you describe will just find a new exploit, and manipulate the legislative process until the political apparatus is strong enough to achieve whatever they wish. That's how the system got into its present state. Today's successful capitalists are tomorrow's lobbyists.

If you really want to stop people from doing anything they can to be more successful than everyone else, you need to destroy their motivation to succeed in the first place. A new game must be invented, one where people are not told that being rich is the key to happiness. I couldn't tell you what that is, but it's obvious that the way things are going is inherently unstable.

Re:democracy hacked? (1)

fustakrakich (1673220) | about a year ago | (#43135423)

Please, stop with the ideological fairy tales. They are diversionary abstractions that only cloud the pure biology at play. Everybody knows their place. The rise and fall of every government solely depends on its cost/benefit ratio.

Re:democracy hacked? (1)

phantomfive (622387) | about a year ago | (#43135313)

Together they set up a wonderful system where the slaves actually believe they are free because they can buy lots of trinkets.

Um, you know that a slave is a real thing, right? And it isn't "someone who goes to work to make money." Believe it or not, you are not a slave. Your comment is like a kid who wants to call CPA because his mom won't let him play video games.

Re:democracy hacked? (4, Interesting)

PopeRatzo (965947) | about a year ago | (#43134731)

Special interests are inevitable in a system that allows politicians to set the rules for businesses and individuals in the first place.

Only if money changes hands.

that's why there is all this money pouring in

No, there's money pouring in because it's legal to do so. Make it illegal, create public election financing and put a few politicians away for taking money and watch how fast things change.

Politicians set the rules for businesses and individuals in 1790 too, you know.

Re:democracy hacked? (1, Insightful)

roman_mir (125474) | about a year ago | (#43134745)

Oh please, that's naive nonsense. You really believe that by making it illegal to take bribes there will be no bribes? It's illegal to take bribes in most parts of the world and the bribes never stop.

In USA the bribes are taken to a different level with so much gov't rules and regulations and taxes and offices, that it is just impossible at all to make something illegal in the first place and even if you made it illegal the money would find way. You really think you can stop the money?

No, you can only choke the power of the ruling class, if they are not allowed to take away your freedom and offer it to the highest bidders, then they can't sell anything.

Re:democracy hacked? (1)

demonlapin (527802) | about a year ago | (#43134801)

Campaign contributions are a drop in the bucket; it's what politicians do when they're out of office that makes the in-office stuff look like kindergarten play. Unless you plan to prohibit politicians from ever holding a job or making an investment after they leave office, people will find a legal way to pay them for their insider knowledge.

Politicians set the rules for businesses and individuals in 1790 too, you know.

You don't seriously think that the reach of the federal government in 1790 was as extensive as it is today, so don't be ridiculous.

Re:democracy hacked? (1)

Sarius64 (880298) | about a year ago | (#43135143)

Funny you should pick an article on Gore to suggest this. He and his father were puppets at the strings of Armand Hammer. Hammer outright bribed his father with more blood money from the Kulak's than most people will ever imagine. Gore Jr. rigged this cap and trade game to exploit the world for billions of dollars. But no one ever names names for the (supposed) Democratic Party members.

New high water mark for overrated (2, Insightful)

fascismforthepeople (2805977) | about a year ago | (#43134773)

Why on earth your comment is scoring +2 is beyond me, or any other sentient being.

promising a bunch of stuff to be given out as subsidies and it was popular, because the promise was to make only a minority of people to pay for it (discrimination against a minority based on different levels of income).

That statement would only be true if the US used a progressive taxation system. However, as the US taxation system is the most regressive in the world - and is a part of why the US has the most highly skewed distribution of wealth of any industrialized nation - your claim is 100% bullshit. If anything, the taxation system effectively results in those with the least paying the most for handouts to those who already have the most.

the more lucrative it became for politicians to keep power

Except that you are championing the cause of the first family of fascism, who are politicians that are seeking unlimited power for unlimited time. That is the highest possible accomplishment of keeping power, and how your church aims to produce fascism for the people.

Re:New high water mark for overrated (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43134835)

Go cry to some socialist gov't that cares, whiner. We're going to keep working to build a country of those who do, and not one of cares to support those who won't.

Re:New high water mark for overrated (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43135171)

It is only regressive because of the massive amount of money the government spends subsidizing poverty.

Re:democracy hacked? (4, Insightful)

Marxdot (2699183) | about a year ago | (#43134827)

tl;dr, roman_mir implies that democracy and proper self-determination is "tyrannical" and makes thinly-veiled wishes for a de jure dictatorship of industrialists, as usual.

Re:democracy hacked? (5, Insightful)

phantomfive (622387) | about a year ago | (#43134961)

It's lucrative to be a politician, and so it is very competitive and it gives so much power that wasn't meant to be there

Yet another reason to keep as much power as possible as local as possible. If some small town or large city gets corrupt, it doesn't affect the rest of us. But if the federal government is corrupt, it affects all of us. And it's a lot harder to deal with federal government corruption than local government corruption.

Re:democracy hacked? (1)

hairyfish (1653411) | about a year ago | (#43135229)

Special interests are inevitable in a system that allows politicians to set the rules for businesses and individuals in the first place. The politicians are the ones that hacked the Constitution, they hacked the Law. They figured out how to remove the chains that were placed upon the government to bind it, to provide it with only limited powers (article 1, section 8). Once the politicians found the way (it was easy once the Republic became wealthy enough due to all the business that thrived under the mostly free market system in the first 124 years of the Republic), just promise the people something for nothing and they will vote for you and will let you do whatever you want to the Law. The politicians turned the Republic into a democracy by promising a bunch of stuff to be given out as subsidies and it was popular, because the promise was to make only a minority of people to pay for it (discrimination against a minority based on different levels of income).

So the more power that the government stole from the people by promising them free stuff, the more lucrative it became for politicians to keep power and the more competitive the field of politics became because it brought with it much more power than it was ever designed to give to the politicians.

As I read this I thought I was reading the intro sequence to The Phantom Menace...

Constitution = OS? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43134431)

Then Al Gore and his ilk are the actual hackers.

Re:Constitution = OS? (3, Interesting)

Let's All Be Chinese (2654985) | about a year ago | (#43134579)

Actually, no. The hackers were the founding fathers, hacking together something intended to last for a bit, only then the lusers came along and allowed the people's interests to be hijacked by monied sleaze. The malware more or less is running the system. There certainly are no competent administrators around to clean up the mess.

You can only stretch analogies so far, but "government" as "operating system", executing laws and directives and things, and regulating access to resources for corporations and individuals, isn't that bad an analogy, really.

Oh, the irony... (0, Flamebait)

KrazyDave (2559307) | about a year ago | (#43134435)

Here's Gore - liar, rumor-monger and slippery pol extraordinaire preaching about pols selling out to special interests and lobbies while he goes and sells his failing "Current TV" network to Islamic propagandists, Al Jezeera, for millions because, I suppose, hi millions in speaking fees and book tours wasn't enough.

The TV channel is business ..... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43134481)

Where he shows his hypocrisy is when he talks about the environment and global warming.

He is making MILLIONS selling the "carbon credit" scam ... that allow companies to POLLUTE legally by paying him a small fee.

Re:Oh, the irony... (3, Insightful)

roman_mir (125474) | about a year ago | (#43134483)

oh, and it's a very interesting case. Current TV got all this access to various networks, you think that's a coincidence? You think you can start a media company and just get access to various networks and distributors? The entire concept was predicated on the Gore's persona, his ties to the government. He is a perfect example of the problem that he himself talks about.

Money in politics? How did Gore become partial owner of Fisker [go.com], a "car company" that just happened to get 529Billion USD subsidy (a loan) and ended up building luxury (90K Fisker Karma) sedans in Finland? Never mind the hypocrisy of this 'climate change' warrior, profiting from a gov't loan, given to a company that outsourced to another country manufacturing of a expensive luxury gas guzzler (20m/gallon)

Hey, hypocrisy is thick with this one.

He was also part of Solindra (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43134993)

Gore was in the board of directors of Solinda .... you know .... the "solar power" company that got $500M on government money and just a few months after getting the money close its doors.

Re:Oh, the irony... (-1, Troll)

Frosty Piss (770223) | about a year ago | (#43134539)

There was a time when Slashdot was a technical forum. But Slashdot has become a lot like all the rest of the forums, dominated by Tea Baggists and other conspiracy theorists. Bitter people that don't understand why their lives are not as good as their parents lives, children of the Renascence, but not part of it.

Slashdot is dead.

Re:Oh, the irony... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43134687)

"Renascence"??

Re:Oh, the irony... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43135089)

Thank goodness we have you to warn us about bitter people.

Re:Oh, the irony... (1)

Sarius64 (880298) | about a year ago | (#43135165)

My life is great! Certainly better than my drug addled parents. Maybe your projecting has lost its path.

Sad to see (5, Insightful)

Tagged_84 (1144281) | about a year ago | (#43134513)

Sad to see his stance on genetic engineering is so negative. How does he expect us to recover so many extinct species and continue to advance if we don't master our biological side?

Those goats aren't being thrown out in the wild to breed, they're being used to create stronger materials that will likely be used to protect us from the dangers of climate change. Sure we have risks of contamination, but to be put off advancement because of what-ifs would mean we'd still be in caves fearing the wrath of fire.

Re:Sad to see (3, Interesting)

manu0601 (2221348) | about a year ago | (#43134875)

Those goats aren't being thrown out in the wild to breed

Indeed. It looks creepier than GM corn because goats are closer to humans than corn, but the risks of uncontrolled dissemination is much lower than with GM corn. And unlike GM corn, the silk goats are not drowned under toxic roundup

Re:Sad to see (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43135039)

Al Gore's closer to a tree than a human.

Re:Sad to see (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43134957)

Although there is no intent to allow these altered goats to breed randomly it will eventually occur. Right now the US has problem with wild boars that have managed to acquire genes fro Siberian boars. Siberian bores are more aggressive and tend to be larger than the normal American boar. Nobody deliberately imported Siberian boars for breeding in the US. But one way or another it happened and it caught on big time. In some states boars are a serious problem and you dare not get into a situation where you can be attacked.
                            Right now Florida has a big issue with pythons. The fear is that the African rock pythons will breed with the Burmese pythons and create a super python that is very large and aggressive. It is certain to occur. Now imagine one person doing this deliberately through genetic blending. Pythons are escape artists. One nut could let one or two altered pythons loose deliberately and we would have decades of expensive work trying to knock them back. We already have all kinds of foreign species here due to the warm climate becoming warmer. Pythons and iguanas in our lawns are rather common now.

I got to the "Al Gore" part... (-1, Flamebait)

Press2ToContinue (2424598) | about a year ago | (#43134515)

and then fell asleep.

Please wake me when slashdot stops thinking Al Gore is interesting.

Re:I got to the "Al Gore" part... (0)

approachingZero (1365381) | about a year ago | (#43134877)

Now isn't that the truth. If there is a greater hypocrite in D.C. I'd like to know who that would be. Wait, I forgot about the king of hypocrites - Obama.

Re:I got to the "Al Gore" part... (1)

unixisc (2429386) | about a year ago | (#43135403)

Actually, what surprised me about this submission/story was there being no mention either in the submission nor in the comments about his most famous invention - the internet. One would have thought that he'd be all over issues like free connectivity, pirate bay and a whole host of other internet related issues.

Sing along: (5, Funny)

Hartree (191324) | about a year ago | (#43134549)

Spider Goat, Spider Goat,
makes the thread for your spider coat!
Spins cloth with eight legged speed,
Any color, any weave.
Take note,
Here comes the Spider Goat!

Re:Sing along: (5, Funny)

shadowofwind (1209890) | about a year ago | (#43134673)

Mashing the two previous posts....

There was an old woman who swallowed a goat
For spiderweb rope, she swallowed a goat
She swallowed the goat to protect us from the dangers of climate change....

Dang, doesn't rhyme.

Doesn't make any sense either.

I think I prefer Homer's version ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43135283)

Spider Goat, Spider Goat
Does what ever a spider goat does .....

Re:Sing along: (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43135431)

Friendly neighborhood GMO goat

Eight legged goats (2)

Tough Love (215404) | about a year ago | (#43134617)

Abomination! Throw all the scientists down the well.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
. ....Note the sarcasm tags.

what tags? (1)

Qubit (100461) | about a year ago | (#43135147)

. ....Note the sarcasm tags.

You must have written them in Unicode, because Slashdot doesn't seem to be able to display them...

.
.
.
.
.
.
.

Also, your scientists are really small. Or are you just approximating your scientists as a point mass when they fall down the well?

Scientifically accurate Spider-Man (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43134655)

Its genetic engineering run amok.

http://boingboing.net/2013/03/01/scientifically-accurate-spider.html

"Our democracy" (1)

jodido (1052890) | about a year ago | (#43134703)

"Our" democracy? Whose? The 15-20 percent unemployed? The millions losing their homes? The spied-upon?

The Problem with Al Gore (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43134749)

About 100 years ago a retailing tycoon named John Wanamaker (older people might remember when they still had department stores) said: "Half of my advertising budget is wasted. The trouble is I can't figure out which half". Well he probably could in many cases, but after the fact, i.e. too late.

That's what I think about Al Gore's many dire predictions about climate, privacy, and this and that. I'm sure he's right on the money about a lot of them. The problem is, he has the kind of personality that is disposed to raise an alarm about almost anything. In Wall Street terms, he's bearish about the future of mankind.

Gore Campaign Contributions (4, Insightful)

CncRobot (2849261) | about a year ago | (#43134751)

When Bill Clinton was president he sold top secret ICBM technology to the Chinese in return for cash donations to the DNC, specifically his and Gore's election campaigns. This is fact. When asked about it during a debate between Gore and Bush, Gore's response was "No controlling legal authority" meaning that Janet Reno was the only one authorized to prosecute and she was told not to.

I really have a hard time listening to Gore, especially when it comes to campaign contributions. What he and Clinton did was treason, period, and he abused his power to not be prosecuted.

Re:Gore Campaign Contributions (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43134871)

Hopefully they remember that technology as they face off with N. Korea. Either they should use it themselves or they should at least be more "on our side" in the stance against the great leader.

Re:Gore Campaign Contributions (1)

Aighearach (97333) | about a year ago | (#43135241)

The Chinese actually stepped forward to help draft the latest sanctions because of their knowledge of N.Korean steps to evade them and what specific items they were trading in. China understands all too well that with N.K. making these nuclear threats against the US as soon as their missile tech improves to make them a threat the US has to strike first. China isn't about to let that happen. I wouldn't be surprised if China invaded N.K. at that point. They would lose a lot of face if the US has to nuke NK and they know it! And they wouldn't consider making an enemy of their biggest trade partner on behalf of an "ally" that never does what they're told.

Spider goats (4, Insightful)

Okian Warrior (537106) | about a year ago | (#43134765)

I used to own stock in the company that made spider goats.

When it was first announced I thought it was a great idea and would lead to a business producing a useful product. Spider silk is strong stuff which and would have many useful applications such as lightweight rope and lightweight body armor.

Although the goats made the spider silk proteins, the company never figured out the trick of making actual silk. Some process in the spinnerets of the spiders turns the proteins into silk, and the company was unable to reproduce this effect.

They sold off the IP for the process, and vanished into obscurity. I don't think anyone has figured out what the missing step was. (This was a couple of years ago - may have been solved since.)

I see nothing wrong with using animals in this way - as factories for producing useful products. The goats weren't mistreated (unlike chickens we raise for food). We do the same thing with other animals without the genetic engineering aspect - wool from sheep, for example.

Re:Spider goats (1)

Entropius (188861) | about a year ago | (#43135333)

Exactly -- and, even more strongly, we have been genetically engineering other animals for millennia, by selective breeding. We built, for instance, the bulldog -- a dog with no face, that can't fuck on its own, can't give birth on its own, and is generally completely physically incompetent. How is building a goat that makes spider silk any more unnatural or cruel?

Sunday Funnies (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43134859)

Gore himself is the talking-walking breathing-living CREEP SHOW Masturbating GRINDHOUSE.

New?!? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43134889)

Why is this news on slashdot when "Al Gore" and "Walter Mossberg" say this?!?
this makes me f*** ticked off.. of COURSE this is happening, and many bright people like Doc Searles for example, have been saying this for years! I am irritated by this blow-hard fatcat Gore, and by the mass media who won't print it unless he says it.. then its news...

Natural Mutations: Amazing, Human Genetics: Evil? (1)

SinisterRainbow (2572075) | about a year ago | (#43134895)

We have already virtually stopped evolving naturally - under the traditional sense of 'natural.' Yet our brains are the consequence of this 'naturalness' is using it somehow not?

Don't be silly (1)

bussdriver (620565) | about a year ago | (#43135035)

If that is your definition, then what is unnatural? Anything? Plastic is natural too? If everything is natural, then why have the word at all?

Will someone think of???? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43134965)

the Itsy Bitsy Spider!!!

So Al Gore is pseudo-religious and anti-science. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43134973)

I find this humorous in the context of popular debate.

Anybody else RTFA (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43135227)

and think "What a douche."

Campaign Contributions has gone out of control (4, Insightful)

GoodNewsJimDotCom (2244874) | about a year ago | (#43135287)

Al Gore is right on one thing. Since the politician who gathers the most campaign contributions tends to win elections, we have a system in place now where the best sell outs get in office. This means politicians do things like make pork projects to special interests, and the special interests pay them kickbacks, all increasing the national debt. At one point the phone company and monopolies were supposed to be regulated by the government. Now corporations regulate the government by writing the legislation for them. Unless we change how campaign contributions work, the system will eventually fail because the national debt's interest becomes more and more of the total tax dollars taken in. Politicians in charge now won't change campaign contributions, because that's how they get paid, that's how they play the game and feel they're winning. But the people's interest aren't always the same interests as corporate interests, and the politicians might not give a damn about the people, but just themselves. This is the biggest problem of democracy as I see it now.

Talk about creepy and scary! (-1, Flamebait)

SuperKendall (25149) | about a year ago | (#43135325)

Gore sees such things as a case of science run amok, alternately creepy and scary.

Funny, that's what I think when I see Al Gore.

If the constitution = OS (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43135339)

The all those hundreds of thousands of regulations are what... Spyware and malware and extra crap...

Wouldn't that make Al Gore a libertardian if he beehive in this idea?

Our democracy has been hacked (-1, Troll)

Osgeld (1900440) | about a year ago | (#43135433)

vs the 2 second CNN news spot that flashed across the screen never to be seen again, the entire time you were somewhat relevant right?

Gore, I have met you, we used to live in the same state, met you many time when you were local, seen you in person during your peek, now your just a lunatic, please shut up and grow into retirement gracefully.

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