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William Binney: NSA Records and Stores 80% of All US Audio Calls

LoyalOpposition Re:Thank you William Binney (278 comments)

Not even the media contacted me when I sent anonymous tips concerning Stingray capabilities, and I worked on the project.

How could the media have contacted you when you sent in the tip anonymously?

~Loyal

about two weeks ago
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Mass. Supreme Court Says Defendant Can Be Compelled To Decrypt Data

LoyalOpposition Another way... (560 comments)

That's why my password is, "I agree to indemnify Loyal Opposition and hold him blameless."

~Loyal

about a month ago
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Researchers Find Easy To Exploit Bugs In Traffic Control Systems

LoyalOpposition Re:low impact (50 comments)

I would be surprised if real traffic light controllers did not have such a safety module.

They do. I worked for a company in 2005 that designed and manufactured traffic light controllers. We bought a standard module from a different company that just watched for conflicting signals, and switched the intersection to all flashing red if it ever saw one. Of course, it was a micro-computer, not an Electrical Engineering class project, but it wasn't connected to the internet and it didn't have any wireless communications ability, so it couldn't be hacked by anything short of physical presence and hand tools.

~Loyal

about 3 months ago
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What It's Like To Be the Scientific Consultant For The Big Bang Theory

LoyalOpposition Re:Not for Nerds (253 comments)

She's a stinking hypocrite who thinks children are accessories to make statements with and the sooner the state takes them away so they can actually have a decent shot at a life with a job without fries the better.

Ew. What a sad little world you live in.

~Loyal

about 3 months ago
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Oklahoma Botched an Execution With Untested Lethal Injection Drugs

LoyalOpposition Re:What's the problem? (1198 comments)

First, why does the US still allow a death penalty?

Well, our judgement is that it provides a number of advantages. One advantage is the it prevents the convicted from committing further crimes. It's safer for the other prisoners, and it's safer for the guards. Another advantage is that it prevents others from committing particularly heinous crimes. I realise that there's evidence that such is not the case, but the evidence is not unequivocal; a reasonable person may still come to that conclusion. A third advantage is that it prevents people from declaring vendetta and taking vengeance. A fourth advantage is that it provides closure for the families and friends of the victim. Families don't have to keep track of parole hearings, and spend time and money testifying against parole.

We tend to argue how much a prisoner costs society, but rarely discuss the morality of executing people.

I disagree. We tend to discuss the morality of executing people ad nauseam. If there's anything left un-discussed, I think it's the effect on the executioners. Knowing that you've killed a human being is going to do something undesirable to your psyche. I worry what it does to them later in life.

Next, and relates to the first is that the Prison systems in the US have become a for profit business.

I don't have a problem with that, but then I think of profit as the price we pay for efficiency. I understand that there's something dissonant about imprisoning people efficiently, but it does have the advantage over imprisoning them inefficiently. Maybe it would be better to think of it as imprisoning people expensively versus not imprisoning them expensively.

The privatization of prisons has caused countless issues. Such as contracts requiring a specific capacity at all times in prisons and the exploitation of prisoners. Laws have been passed to help keep prisons at capacity...

I'm not aware of those events, but I'll take your word for it. That being said, and I'm trying not to be flippant here, I can't see how the one relates to the other. I mean--if one executes a prisoner then the prisoner is not maintaining the capacity of the prison, is he? How do prison businesses exploit a corpse? And aren't laws being passed to keep prisons at capacity a problem with the legislature rather than one with the business?

...nearly everyone in the US can commit several felonies every day without their knowledge.

Now that is a problem I worry about. We imprison more people per capita than any other country. We're not a particularly lawless people, are we? Why do we put so many in prison? Something is wrong. Now, it could be said that we aren't lawless because we imprison so many, but I think that's just plain wrong. I particularly decry the increasing lack of a mens rea in recently passed laws. What's the point of that!

We could discuss other issues, such as how rehabilitation in the US really does not exist and society lacks opportunity for people motivating people to illegal activities but can save that for later.

Well...okay.

We should address why the US has the highest percentage of people in prison in the world,...

Amen, brother!

...and why we still have executions first.

Been there; done that; the T-shirt's stained with blood.

~Loyal

about 3 months ago
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3D Printing of Human Tissue To Spark Ethics Debate

LoyalOpposition New IP slogan... (234 comments)

You wouldn't download a kidney, would you?

~Loyal

about 6 months ago
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HIV Tracking Technology Could Pinpoint Who's Infecting Who

LoyalOpposition Re:unlike- mutates in host quickly (203 comments)

They can share some, all, or none of the sites. I really did a bad job explaining that.

If they shared some or all sites then they wouldn't be a separate 50 sites, no?

~Loyal

about 8 months ago
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HIV Tracking Technology Could Pinpoint Who's Infecting Who

LoyalOpposition Re:unlike- mutates in host quickly (203 comments)

If strain A differs from strain B at 50 sites, and strain B from strain C at a separate 50 sites, A and C can have anywhere from 0-100 differences.

Oh, well. You're welcome. I'm still confused, though. If strain A differs from strain B at 50 sites, and strain B from strain C at a separate 50 sites, then isn't it true that A and C have exactly 100 differences?

~Loyal

about 8 months ago
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HIV Tracking Technology Could Pinpoint Who's Infecting Who

LoyalOpposition Re:And we'll all discover (203 comments)

it's still within the same order of magnitude.

You two are talking about different things. You're talking about certain types of intercourse given that exactly one subject is infected, and exactly one subject is uninfected. Anonymous Coward is talking about certain types of intercourse given that both subjects are members of the general population.

~Loyal

about 8 months ago
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HIV Tracking Technology Could Pinpoint Who's Infecting Who

LoyalOpposition Re:unlike- mutates in host quickly (203 comments)

If strain A differs from strain B at 50 sites, and strain C from strain A at a separate 50 sites, A and C can have anywhere from 0-100 differences.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but if strain C differs from strain A at 50 sites, then isn't it true that A and C have exactly 50 differences? In other words, it's false that A and C can have anywhere from 0-100 differences?

~Loyal

about 8 months ago
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White House Official Tracked Down and Fired Over Insulting Tweets

LoyalOpposition Re:Secret Emails and they fire a tweeter? (208 comments)

To be fair, any corporation would have done the same thing. If Pepsi (say) discovered a Twitter account that repeatedly says that Pepsi tastes horrible, and it turned out that the owner of the account was one of their employees, it wouldn't matter if that employee never used his or her real name--he or she would be canned faster than, well...

I think one difference might be that Pepsi can't use all the power of government to reveal who the tweeter was.

~Loyal

about 9 months ago
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New York Subpoenaed AirBnb For All NYC User Data

LoyalOpposition Re:Look past the article's version of the cast ... (181 comments)

Regulation are also costing them. I'm sure lot of hotel would be fine just not having those pesky regulation getting in the way (like you know fire protection, hygiene, using legit employees, insurances, ...)

Think "barriers to entry."

~Loyal

about 10 months ago
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Maryland Indictment Says Silk Road Founder Tried To Arrange Murder of Employee

LoyalOpposition Re:Credible, unfortunately. (294 comments)

Trying to create a better society is a very different thing from thinking you've invented one.

Can you explain how? I mean, it seems to me that they are inextricably linked. Suppose Mr. Legislator wants to try to create a better society. His necessary first step is to hypothesize how to do so. Once he has his hypothesis he has two choices--either evaluate whether the hypothetical society is better than current society or try it. You've forestalled the former, so he has to proceed with the latter. Once it's tried, he must evaluate the results. The possible evaluations are the hypothetical society is worse than ex ante, it's equal, or it's better. You've forestalled the latter. It seems to me that the only way you allow a person to try to create a better society is if he a priori is doomed to failure.

~Loyal

about 10 months ago
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Arrested Chinese Blogger "Confesses" On State TV, Praises Censorship

LoyalOpposition Re:Drudge and other U.S. bloggers are next (349 comments)

The 2nd Amendment applies to what is now the National Guard. We never updated the Constitution as we adopted a "standing army" policy.

The Supreme Court of the United States would beg to differ.

~Loyal

about 10 months ago
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How Car Dealership Lobbyists Successfully Banned Tesla Motors From Texas

LoyalOpposition Re:Free market, LOL! (688 comments)

Socialism, lol.

I keep hearing that. However, here are all of the economic planks of the 1928 Socialist Party Platform, and how they have fared legislatively. Smells like socialism to me.

~Loyal

about 10 months ago
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Neil deGrasse Tyson Says Private Business Will Not Open the Space Frontier

LoyalOpposition Oregon Trail (580 comments)

'It's not possible. Space is dangerous. It's expensive. There are unquantified risks. Combine all of those under one umbrella; you cannot establish a free market capitalization of that enterprise.'"

I feel the same way about settling the western United States. Oregon is dangerous. It's expensive. There are unquantified risks. Combine all of those under one umbrella; you cannot establish a free market capitalization of that enterprise.

~Loyal

"You have died of dysentery."

about a year ago
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EFF Wins Release of Secret Court Opinion: NSA Surveillance Unconstitutional

LoyalOpposition Re:From TFA (524 comments)

Yeah sorry dude but there hasn't been a judge, founding father, legislator or even constitutional clause since foundation thats actually said this. This is a fantasy of the tea party whackys.

Does Chief Justice Marshall count? He once said, "This government is acknowledged by all, to be one of enumerated powers. The principle, that it can exercise only the powers granted to it, would seem too apparent, to have required to be enforced by all those arguments, which its enlightened friends, while it was depending before the people, found it necessary to urge; that principle is now universally admitted." I'm pretty sure he's not a tea party whacky. How about Chief Justice William Rehnquist? He's the one who wrote the majority opinion when striking down the Gun Free School Zone Act in United States v. Lopez.

~Loyal

about a year ago
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Snowden Granted One-Year Asylum In Russia

LoyalOpposition Re:Seriously? I mean seriously? (411 comments)

The index does not measure, and has nothing to say, about the main topics at hand - civil liberties and human rights - so it doesn't refute the binary guy's claims even one bit. In fact, it's almost completely unrelated to his claims.

And here is Freedom House's 2013 annual survey of freedom. In it you'll find the United States rated as "Free" (most free of three categories) in freedom status, "1" (most free of seven categories) in political rights, and "1" (most free of seven categories) in civil liberties.

~Loyal

about a year ago
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Snowden Granted One-Year Asylum In Russia

LoyalOpposition Re:Seriously? I mean seriously? (411 comments)

The Heritage Foundation is based in the US. That doesn't prove anything.

First, I'm going to try to prove that you're wrong. I'm going to do that by showing that your argument is flawed, and can be rejected on that basis. Following that I'm going to try to prove that I'm right. I'm going to do that by showing that Argument from Authority is a valid inferential technique. Here's why your argument is flawed. You're saying that the US isn't free because the entity stating that it's free is based in the US. You're arguing against an argument because of some attribute of the entity making the argument. That's flawed because arguments stand on their own. To argue against the entity making the argument is a fallacy known as argumentum ad hominem, which can be translated as "argument against the man" and is sometimes colloquially called an ad hominem argument. You've just committed the ad hominem fallacy. Since your argument is fallacious it can be rejected.

Second, Argument from Authority is a valid inferential technique. In fact, that's the reason authorities exist, to deliver us conclusions that are too difficult for people not schooled in the art to reach. Now, to be a valid Argument from Authority, it must meet four prongs. The first prong is that the Authority must be an actual authority. You can find information about their authority here. Second, the authority must be an authority in a relevant sphere of inquiry. You can find information about relevance at the same site. Third, if the sphere of inquiry is well established then there must be general agreement in the field, and if not then the authority must have a reputation of having made correct predictions. You can find information about agreement at that same site. Finally, the authority must explain, so far as possible, the reason he reached that conclusion. You can find information about methodology at that same site. Therefore, I have made a valid appeal to authority and the conclusion I stated may be relied on with some confidence.

And Singapore is rated 8 steps above the US. Singapore, which has an actual dictator and all kinds of crazy laws.

You can find the reasons Singapore is rated so highly here.

And Chile beats the US in terms of freedom? Well at least they are not aiming high.

You can find the reasons Chile is rated so highly here.

In any case your whole post is basically an Argument from Authority. You are saying, "This is what the Heritage Foundation thinks."

The actual fallacy is called Argument from Inexpert Authority. An Argument from Inexpert Authority is an argument from authority that does not meet one or more of the four prongs I outlined. Since the argument I made meets all four prongs it's a cogent argument.

Try actually making a real argument to support the view that the US is "one of the most free countries in the world by a pretty long shot".

You can find the reasons the United States is rated so highly here.

~Loyal

about a year ago
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Snowden Granted One-Year Asylum In Russia

LoyalOpposition Re:Seriously? I mean seriously? (411 comments)

The US is still one of the most free countries in the world by a pretty long shot

I am willing to bet that you have never spent more than a month living outside of the US. Otherwise you wouldn't say such stupid things.

It's not so much a "stupid" thing to say as an, oh, "accurate" thing to say. If you would like to see an (as nearly as possible) objective way to look at the relative freedom of countries you might refer to The Heritage Foundation's annual survey. It says pretty much exactly what LordLimecat said, listing the US at 10 freest out of 177 countries ranked.

~Loyal

about a year ago

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