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FBI Seeks To Legally Hack You If You're Connected To TOR Or a VPN

mpercy Treason is one reason for the existence of 2nd (382 comments)

Ever heard of that treasonous document that starts out "When in the Course of human events it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation."?

It goes on to say: "Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security."

The signers of the Declaration of Independence and the people who fought for the Colonies independence were committing treason.

Indeed, the 2nd Amendment self-state purpose is to allow the citizens to preserve their freedom from a despotic federal government that was being formed by the same document. Rather, the government being formed could become despotic and need to be thrown off, and the the 2nd provides the basis for that.

This is pretty clear from various Founder's explanations, e.g. Alexander Hamliton "[I]f circumstances should at any time oblige the government to form an army of any magnitude[, ] that army can never be formidable to the liberties of the people while there is a large body of citizens, little, if at all, inferior to them in discipline and the use of arms, who stand ready to defend their own rights and those of their fellow-citizens."

The Framers had *just* completed an armed (and treasonous) insurrection of their own, and were keenly aware of the fact that any government they might form could (and probably would) become despotic. The 2nd at least put a floor under the people's ability to fight back against that potential.

about two weeks ago
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FBI Seeks To Legally Hack You If You're Connected To TOR Or a VPN

mpercy Re:Bad idea (382 comments)

The Revolutionary War?

about two weeks ago
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Gun Rights Hacktivists To Fab 3D-Printed Guns At State Capitol

mpercy Re:Obsession with 3-d gun printing (573 comments)

"2) It takes too long to make. You go and buy one in ten minutes."

Bought a gun recently? Even with CCW license to speed the process, it takes a lot longer than 10 minutes.

about three weeks ago
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Gun Rights Hacktivists To Fab 3D-Printed Guns At State Capitol

mpercy Re:learn your rights! (573 comments)

Recall that the Founders had just won a war where the people's arms played a key part in overthrowing the despotic government they had lived under--because they had arms they were able to stand up to the British Army. The Founders often expressed their concern that the new government they were founding could itself become despotic (despite the check-and-balances they were building in), and in particular were fundamentally against a standing army. A standing army could be used to oppress the people, but only if the people were not similarly armed. If the people were armed as the standing army, they would easily be able to outnumber any such regular army, and thus the presences of an armed populace--the militia--served as a deterrent to despotic government. So rather than equating the militia to the National Guard, the stated purpose of the militia is specifically to be able to fight the federal government (and its army) to preserve the free state, should it ever come to that.

I ask, sir, what is the militia? It is the whole people except for a few public officials.
George Mason

Madison: "The means of defence against foreign danger, have been always the instruments of tyranny at home. Among the Romans it was a standing maxim to excite a war, whenever a revolt was apprehended. Throughout all Europe, the armies kept up under the pretext of defending, have enslaved the people."

Noah Webster: "Before a standing army can rule the people must be disarmed; as they are in almost every kingdom in Europe. The supreme power in America cannot enforce unjust laws by the sword; because the whole body of the people are armed, and constitute a force superior to any band of regular troops that can be, on any pretence, raised in the United States."

Alexander Hamilton: "[I]f circumstances should at any time oblige the government to form an army of any magnitude[, ] that army can never be formidable to the liberties of the people while there is a large body of citizens, little, if at all, inferior to them in discipline and the use of arms, who stand ready to defend their own rights and those of their fellow-citizens."

Theodore Sedgwick: "[it is] a chimerical idea to suppose that a country like this could ever be enslaved. . . Is it possible. . . that an army could be raised for the purpose of enslaving themselves or their brethren? or, if raised whether they could subdue a nation of freemen, who know how to prize liberty and who have arms in their hands?"

about three weeks ago
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Neil DeGrasse Tyson Explains His Christmas Tweet

mpercy urban dictionary (681 comments)

hamstering

When a person or company tries to get out of a situation, by finding a loophole to get through, or coming up with some kind of bullshit excuse.
Much like a hamster tries anything to escape its cage.

about a month ago
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Neil DeGrasse Tyson Explains His Christmas Tweet

mpercy Re:Kind of disappointed in him. (681 comments)

For some reason, this post reminded me of this:

A story by David Moser...
This Is the Title of This Story, Which Is Also Found Several Times in the Story Itself

This is the first sentence of this story. This is the second sentence. This is the title of this story, which is also found several times in the story itself. This sentence is questioning the intrinsic value of the first two sentences. This sentence is to inform you, in case you haven't already realized it, that this is a self-referential story, that is, a story containing sentences that refer to their own structure and function. This is a sentence that provides an ending to the first paragraph.

[http://consc.net/misc/moser.html]

about a month ago
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Paul Graham: Let the Other 95% of Great Programmers In

mpercy Logic applies to all professions (552 comments)

"with only 5% of the world's population, the U.S. can only expect about 5% of great lawyers to be born here"
"with only 5% of the world's population, the U.S. can only expect about 5% of great teachers to be born here"
"with only 5% of the world's population, the U.S. can only expect about 5% of great CEOs to be born here"
"with only 5% of the world's population, the U.S. can only expect about 5% of great parents to be born here"
"with only 5% of the world's population, the U.S. can only expect about 5% of great ax-murderers to be born here"
"with only 5% of the world's population, the U.S. can only expect about 5% of great plumbers to be born here"
"with only 5% of the world's population, the U.S. can only expect about 5% of great piano-tuners to be born here"
"with only 5% of the world's population, the U.S. can only expect about 5% of great cricketers to be born here"
"with only 5% of the world's population, the U.S. can only expect about 5% of great chicken-feather-pluckers to be born here"

"with only 5% of the world's population, the U.S. can only expect about 5% of great [insert job title here] to be born here"

about a month ago
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Who's To Blame For Rules That Block Tesla Sales In Most US States?

mpercy Re:These laws are not anti-Tesla, most predate Tes (141 comments)

A terrific point from that journal article...

The net result of all these laws is to raise profits for car dealers. State legislatures may be willing to do this because dealers represent an identifiable source of state employment and tax revenue (Canis and Platzer, 2009, pp. 4–12), while even large manufacturers can site manufacturing plants only in a limited number of states. The result is that new car dealers have an advantage over auto manufacturers when it comes to political leverage in state legislatures, and thus states enact laws that extract rent from manufacturers and redistribute it to franchise dealers.

about a month and a half ago
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Who's To Blame For Rules That Block Tesla Sales In Most US States?

mpercy Glad we're in agreement... (141 comments)

Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe delivered on his promise to billionaire Michael Bloomberg this week. The Democrat proposed the restoration of the state’s limitation on handgun sales to one a month, plus mandatory background checks on buyers — enforced by a police presence.

Of course, Michael Bloomberg, corporate mogul and billionaire, funded Mr. McAuliffe to the tune of millions. Nothing liek a bought-and-paid-for politician to do your bidding.

about a month and a half ago
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Who's To Blame For Rules That Block Tesla Sales In Most US States?

mpercy Really? The FCC is a "rethuglican" creation? (141 comments)

The FCC was formed by the Communications Act of 1934 to replace the radio regulation functions of the Federal Radio Commission.

The Communications Act of 1934 is a United States federal law, signed into law by President Franklin D. Roosevelt on June 19, 1934. I believe FDR was a Democrat. The law was passed by the 73rd Congress. Both chambers had a Democratic majority. Dems in the Senate enjoyed a 60-35 majority, while over in the House thing were even rosier with Dems holding about 312 seats to Republicans 115 or so (counts varied slightly over time).

about a month and a half ago
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Who's To Blame For Rules That Block Tesla Sales In Most US States?

mpercy These laws are not anti-Tesla, most predate Tesla (141 comments)

by 50 years or more, and reflect the situations surrounding the time in which they were passed. One can hardly expect an existing dealership system to use legal means, especially those existing laws, to protect their interests. This ought to be obvious even if one disagrees with the premise of the laws. And by the way, these laws were passed in all states over decades of time, usually in response to some bad action by the manufacturers (such as forcing dealerships to accept cars they did order, so manufactures could offload dead inventory, or not reimbursing dealerships for warranty repairs).

You cannot simply point at today's lackey Republicans as the source for these laws, nor claim them to be "anti-Tesla" anymore than 50-year-old telecom laws are "anti-Google".

A far better resource than the source in the original posting is

http://faculty.som.yale.edu/Fi...

This is an analysis predating Tesla's trouble by a bit, focusing on the government-sanctioned decimation of dealerships through the TARP process, circa 2010, and includes a nice history of franchise protection laws.

For example:

The regulation of auto franchises arose as a response to car manufacturer he regulation of auto franchises arose as a response to car manufacturer
opportunism early in the twentieth century. According to Surowiecki (2006), in 1920, Henry Ford took advantage of its established dealer network by forcing
dealers to buy inventories of new cars that they were unlikely to sell. The reason that the company could “force” dealers to take the cars was that they had all made important investments in their facilities and reputation. Thus they had sunk costs that could be expropriated. Ford and General Motors used the same strategy again during the Great Depression. These episodes demonstrated to policymakers that the franchisor, with its greater information and financial resources, might exploit investments made by the franchisees. Federal regulation followed these periods.

The starting point for auto franchise regulation is the 1956 federal act generally known as the Automobile Dealer’s Day in Court Act (ADDICA), which
provides that a car dealer may recover damages if its manufacturer fails to act in good faith in complying with the terms of the franchise agreement, including on
issues of allocation of vehicles to dealers, or matters of termination, cancellation, or transfer of the franchise. However, by the time the ADDICA was enacted, 20 states had already passed auto franchise laws. Today, every state has a law governing car manufacturer/dealer auto franchise laws. Today, every state has a law governing car manufacturer/dealer relationships.

All states require that car dealers be licensed. Even 30 years ago, 44 states had such a requirement. This regulation prevents the manufacturer from retailing cars through other means. In particular, this regulation has been a major impediment to the development of Internet distribution of new cars.

about a month and a half ago
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Peru Indignant After Greenpeace Damages Ancient Nazca Site

mpercy I used to think they were a group of idiots (465 comments)

bent on keeping the world in a Stone Age sort of existence. And then they blew up those ancient Buddha statues. The Taliban, that is.

Pretty much felt the same way about Greenpeace, and now they've defiled the Nazca lines. I'm for the same treatment for them that we gave the Taliban.

about a month and a half ago
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The Case For Flipping Your Monitor From Landscape to Portrait

mpercy Stop putting toolbars at the top (567 comments)

How hard is it to make toolbars dockable on the side? My monitors are just about tall enough to display 8.5x11" sheet in 1:1 (not quite, with about 10.75" of vertical display area). But using Word means giving up nearly 1.75" at the top and nearly 0.5" at the bottom. I know I can make the ribbon hideable.

Chrome, Adobe Reader eat up top & bottom space too.

Let me move all that stuff off to one side!

about 1 month ago
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Obama Offers Funding For 50,000 Police Body Cameras

mpercy Samaritan? (262 comments)

nm

about 2 months ago
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Obama Offers Funding For 50,000 Police Body Cameras

mpercy Once was one a jury in this circumstance (262 comments)

In a DUI case, the prosecution withheld the video evidence. Since a suite of other charges (something like 12 additional charges) had been added to the DUI--resisting, assault on officer, ...--the video was possibly exculpatory. When the defense lawyer pointed out that prosecution had not turned over the dash cam video as requested, the judge stopped proceedings and ordered the prosecution to produce the tape. He was mad, too, you could tell. IIRC, he said 24 hours or you'll be in contempt and we'll have a mistrial. Jury was dismissed until the tape was located.

When we came back, the tape was played. *Somehow* the tape showed the cops driving up to the scene, then 20 minutes of snow, then magically cleared back to normal video showing the tow truck removing the accused's car.

Because of that tape being withheld and then magically showing nothing for the duration of the event in question (erased? disconnected?), when we deliberated, the first thing we did was ignore all the tacked on charges. We considered and convicted on the DUI based only on the fact that the wreck happened and the BAC test was positive. Because of the prosecution and police actions with the tape, we basically ignored every word of testimony from officers on the scene and never considered a single charge except the original DUI.

As it turned out, we found out in sentencing that it was the 8th DUI for the guy, and the judge expressed his opinion that we had done exactly right in finding as we did for the other charges. He had words for the prosecution that were probably pretty damning for a judge not on a TV show.

about 2 months ago
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Internet Sales Tax Bill Dead In Congress

mpercy Re:Ok, they got ONE right... (257 comments)

Also, on creating a "level playing field"...

What this law would have done is to make online retailers subject to *different* rules than a physical store.

It would make an online retailer demand information about the buyer so that the online retailer can act as a remote proxy tax collector based on where the items are shipped, not where the seller is physically located.

A B&M one in another state is not going to be forced to do the same thing when visitors from some other state make a purchase (which they might take home and might evade their local use taxes).

about 3 months ago
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Internet Sales Tax Bill Dead In Congress

mpercy Re:Ok, they got ONE right... (257 comments)

The issue boils down to: Can a state force a retailer based in another state, with no point-of-presence in the taxing state, to act as a proxy tax collector?

Imagine for one moment a shopping mall full of retailers. These stores sit just across the border from you in another state, but since your house is only a few minutes drive, easily accessible. Further, the neighboring state has a *much* lower sales tax than yours--let's even say they have zero sales tax (as a few states do).

Your state is frustrated that so many of its border-dwelling residents chose to make all their purchases across the border, thus avoiding sales taxes my state perceives as being owed to my state and depriving local retailers of business. Your state has instituted a "use tax," equivalent to the sales tax, that taxpayers are supposed to report and pay for any items imported into the state. But it seems almost no one is paying it!

Your state goes to retailers across the border and *demands* that they collect and remit sales taxes to your state. The stores, recognizing the problems they will face, such as now requiring all purchasers to submit ID and proof of residence and question them as to where the goods they are buying will end up--not to mention additional operating expense and liability for any incorrect tax filings that might occur--wisely tell your state to take a flying leap. Your state has no jurisdictional authority to impose its force on these retailers.

The problem here is simply that states cannot get their own citizens to pay taxes due (use taxes) and are trying to force out-of-state businesses to act as tax collectors for them. Think about it, is your state entitled to force a Wal-Mart or a mom-n-pop store lying just across the border in another state to collect your state's sales taxes? No way! Why should they get to force some other out-of-state business to do so?

about 3 months ago
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Internet Sales Tax Bill Dead In Congress

mpercy Only because you're a tax cheat (257 comments)

Chances are if your state has a sales tax, it has an equivalent use tax. You are supposed to pay the use tax on goods purchased from out-of-state and imported into your state. So if you didn't cheat on your taxes, the local stores would not be at a disadvantage.

Imagine a store in a state with 0% sales-tax, say, Delaware. Further assume it is close to the border with a state that has a high sales tax, like, hmm, Maryland which is considering a 7% rate. By reputation and the lure of 0% sales tax (by virtue of evading their own local use tax), people from the neighboring state make the short trip to buy their wares. Being a brick-and-mortar store, they charge all their customers the local sales tax rate (0%). They do not care nor ask where their customers are from, there is no question *at all* where the transaction takes place.

The store decides to create a website to allow their loyal customers (and hopefully new customers) to buy things online and have them mailed to them. Under this proposed rule, the store not only have to treat their online customers differently from their in-store customers, but have to comply with 10,000 different tax regimes?

The issue here is that Maryland would and should have zero chance of enforcing its will on Delaware business to force them to act as proxy tax collectors for Maryland's use taxes--the taxes being evaded by Marylanders--even if hoards of Marylanders rolled into Delaware every day to stock up. It is the Marylanders who are violating Maryland's use tax laws. Why is it the responsibility of a store in Delaware to enforce Maryland's use tax laws?

There's no practical difference between Marylanders driving to Delaware to shop compared to Marylanders ordering from a store in Delaware and having the loot delivered.

How is it fair to force a store in Delaware to be a tax collector for a California municipality? And without *any* compensation for the favor, not to mention the overhead of tallying and remitting taxes to all those difference jurisdictions, *plus* the inherent liability should they god forbid make a mistake in their forced servitude as proxy tax collector. I'm sure California would have no problem shutting down a Delaware store for failure to comply with California's tax code.

about 3 months ago

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