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The Executive Order That Led To Mass Spying, As Told By NSA Alumni

penix1 Re:Executive Orders Need to Expire, and Quickly (180 comments)

A typical executive order simply designates procedures and requirements to be followed by people working for the Executive branch of the government.

Which is EXACTLY what this executive order does. It is implementing at the Executive Branch the legislation to which it is based, namely the National Security Act of 1947 as amended. It even says so at the start of the order:

by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, including the National Security Act of 1947, as amended, (Act) and as President of the United States of America, in order to provide for the effective conduct of United States intelligence activities and the protection of constitutional rights, it is hereby ordered as follows:

http://fas.org/irp/offdocs/eo/...

Also, nothing in this executive order "led to" the warrantless wiretapping as alleged in the story. In fact, there are several places in the order that state that if US citizens are involved, it MUST go through the FBI / Attorney General. Read it. You will see what I mean.

2 days ago
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The Executive Order That Led To Mass Spying, As Told By NSA Alumni

penix1 Re:Haply so, but exec orders and agencies (180 comments)

Did you even read the executive order?

First of all, it has been modified many, many times since Ronald Reagen the last that I can find was in 2008. http://fas.org/irp/offdocs/eo/...

Second, and more to your points, sprinkled throughout the document are statements like, any intelligence collected concerning United States citizens must go through the FBI / Attorney General. This is so they can begin criminal investigations using the tools (read WARRANTS) to gain physical evidence of a crime. And the collection of that data, according to the order, is tangential to foreign intelligence gathering. As an example, here is 1.1(a)

(a) All means, consistent with applicable Federal law and this order, and with full consideration of the rights of United States persons, shall be used to obtain reliable intelligence information to protect the United States and its interests.

[Emphasis added]

This is 20(A):

(A) The Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation shall coordinate the clandestine collection of foreign intelligence collected through human sources or through human-enabled means and counterintelligence activities inside the United States;

[Emphasis added]

So sticking to the topic at hand, namely that this order authorizes warrantless surveillance of United States citizens, is patently false. That may be the way it is used but that goes counter to the executive order's language.

By the way, the "human enabled means" is the metadata you are talking about.

2 days ago
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DoT Proposes Mandating Vehicle-To-Vehicle Communications

penix1 Re:All new passenger cars and light trucks (256 comments)

My biggest problem is with this line...

NHTSA believes that V2V capability will not develop absent regulation, because there would not be any immediate safety benefits for consumers who are early adopters of V2V."

So in short, the government is going to mandate yet another thing that nobody wants and that even the manufacturers don't want to make. Brilliant!

3 days ago
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Net Neutrality Is 'Marxist,' According To a Koch-Backed Astroturf Group

penix1 Re:What's so American (523 comments)

You are confusing things. Net neutrality isn't about what tier of service you have. It is about ensuring that you aren't getting purposefully manipulated speed for the tier you have. Let's use your examples since you seem to understand those...

Do you think everyone needs the same speed? Does your grandmother need the same speed as an MIT researcher?

Do you think the MIT researcher should pay for the higher tier and be slowed down to Grandma's speed for some sites?

Same priciple for package delivery. Do you think everyone needs their package overnight? Or are there different needs.

Do you think your overnight package should be 3 days to certain destinations for the same price of overnight delivery?

Same principle for travel. Do you think everyone needs a supersonic transport, or are some fine with taking a Greyhound.

Do you think those that pay for the supersonic speed should be shuttled to the Grayhound station for certain destinations because that destination didn't pay the airlines for it?

4 days ago
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Put A Red Cross PSA In Front Of the ISIS Beheading Video

penix1 Re:I forced myself to watch it (300 comments)

This DID cause some hurt to some members of my family, but the "suppress reporting of something which actually happened because it might bother some members of the family" approach would have been more harmful to the public interest (and therefore also to us, in the long run).

Reporting on it != viewing the entire episode from grim start to grisly end. There is a huge difference. Add to that the propaganda factor this incident has (for both sides) and it does nothing but damage to the family. Again, I will ask you in the terms of your experience, how would it affect the family had those "unnatural circumstances" been recorded, uploaded to YouTube and used for political purposes?

5 days ago
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For Microsoft, $93B Abroad Means Avoiding $30B Tax Hit

penix1 Re:tax by transaction (316 comments)

No it wouldn't since he was only using bank transactions. His idea is to charge that penny on ALL transactions including every transaction made on the stock markets which counts in the hundreds of millions if not billions a day. Add in all the other transactions that occur daily and it is easily in the trillions a day.

about a week ago
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Illinois University Restricts Access To Social Media, Online Political Content

penix1 Re:could've sworn this was not the case (129 comments)

"Because an institution of higher learning prefers its workers to be dumb and uninformed"

No...because an employer pays for their employee's Internet access so they can do the employer's business. It's not like there aren't multiple ways to access the Internet.

In other words people will switch to using smartphones and tablets to access Facebook, Wikipedia, politically correct websites, etc... and nothing really changes. Censorship is a game of Whac-A-Mole that the censors will always loose.

It depends on the goal of the censorship. If the goal is to prevent you from ever accessing the restricted content, then you are correct. On the other hand if the goal is to prevent you from using my network to access it, then they certainly can do that.

about a week ago
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UK Police Warn Sharing James Foley Killing Video Is a Crime

penix1 Re:Thoughtcrime (391 comments)

And illegal to knowingly distribute it.

You just knocked out bittorrent....

about a week ago
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Comcast Training Materials Leaked

penix1 Re:Just doin' business (249 comments)

Shit... Now I'm in the position of defending Comcast...

Trying to sell them something they obviously aren't there for (such as additional services when they are looking for tech support) = bad.

If you read the document, you would see that upselling BEFORE the tech support issue was solved is enough to get you a "0" score. Upselling doesn't occur until their issue is resolved and the call is on track to end.

Trying to sell them something they obviously aren't there for (such as additional services when they are looking for tech support) = bad.

Even Comcast agrees with this which is why the score will drop to 0 if the support tech doesn't solve the reason for the call before trying to upsell.

Now I feel dirty for defending Comcast... Thanks a lot fella!

about two weeks ago
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Microsoft Considered Renaming Internet Explorer To Escape Its Reputation

penix1 Re:question: does IE support adblock and noscript? (426 comments)

No it doesn't which is one reason DHS has issued at least a dozen "do not use Internet Explorer" alerts over the years.

Oddly enough though, employees of DHS can't use any other browser so to make those alerts without following it themselves rings hollow to me. And yes, I used to be a DHS employee. Now I'm with my state. You know, you grow...

about two weeks ago
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Knocking Down the Great Firewall of China

penix1 Re:Not my job (167 comments)

I read that line quite differently. It IS the job the the Chinese citizens to change a situation they don't agree with and this is one tool to help them do that. To say it is solely up to outsiders to change the system of a country without the support of the citizens is forcing your will on those citizens.

about two weeks ago
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DEA Paid Amtrak Employee To Pilfer Passenger Lists

penix1 Re:Let's play the who goes to jail game.... (127 comments)

The one that needs to go to jail is the one whose signature is on the bottom of the checks.

[she was] paid nearly $900,000 over the last ten years to give the DEA passenger lists outside of normal channels

That's the part that is sickening to me.

about three weeks ago
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Hotel Chain Plans Phone-Based Check-in and Room Access

penix1 Re:Fucking anti-social Millennials (120 comments)

Charleston, WV. The reason they are in the self checkout is because there is only 1 human checkout in this 12 lane store. In short, they are trying to force people to use the machines so they can cut costs.

about a month ago
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Hotel Chain Plans Phone-Based Check-in and Room Access

penix1 Re:Fucking anti-social Millennials (120 comments)

Are self-service checkouts surrounded by impulse-buying items in the US?

Yes... At least at the Kroger in my neck of the woods...

And if it takes you a noticeably longer time to go through the self-service checkout than the human cashier, you might just be clueless at technology, which isn't something I'd expect on Slashdot.

It isn't the /. user holding things up it is the granny before him and the twelve other grannies before her. Add to that the one human checkout lane that is backed up around the block because nobody can stand waiting for hours while granny tries to figure out the machine.

about a month ago
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Which Is Better, Adblock Or Adblock Plus?

penix1 Re:Neither (436 comments)

Advertising does that without requiring a direct cost from you.

I see this argument a lot and it just doesn't hold water. There is a direct cost to the end user in wasted bandwidth if nothing else. Then there is the social cost of being tracked and worse, drive-by infections.

Besides, I never did see how showing an ad that is never followed through (meaning the product being hawked was sold because of the ad) can be profitable. Which is why I think the advertising based business model is extremely flawed.

about 1 month ago
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Google's Mapping Contest Draws Ire From Indian Government

penix1 Re:If the average citizen knows your defence detai (96 comments)

They can... And I think they should... Put a big red polygon there with the label "Indian Government Declared Sensitive Area" right on top.

about a month ago
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Satellite Images Show Russians Shelling Ukraine

penix1 Re:Great... (582 comments)

... we should all be worried the USA has nukes too.

Yes we should. Especially since the US has shown it is willing to use them against another country in anger. Not once but twice.

about a month ago
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Nasty Business: How To Drain Competitors' Google AdWords Budgets

penix1 Re:Advertised on YouTube? (97 comments)

I predict that's the way things will be in the future: "Don't want to see ads? Then, leave. We already provide 'free,' content. We will not provide content for ABSOLUTELY free."

If you have advertising on your site, then your content isn't free and it is false advertising to claim it as such. It simply is being paid by proxy. A more apt statement would be advertising supported.

about a month ago
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On Forgetting the Facts: Questions From the EU For Google, Other Search Engines

penix1 Re:Institutional hypocrisy (186 comments)

For all the whining here, the option they've taken is actually the least intrusive.

And the best response that could be given would be to blackhole everything EU. They want to be forgotten, then let's forget them. Removing all links to everything EU including businesses, government and humanitarian sites would fit the bill. Restrict the crawler preventing new EU stuff from being indexed would solve the problem for the future.

The EU wants to be forgotten, let's see how the EU economy survives that.

about a month ago
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Oso Disaster Had Its Roots In Earlier Landslides

penix1 Re:a question.... (64 comments)

What is the solution? Other than allowing insurance companies to price such considerations into their policies, I don't see one.

You seem to be eliminating the most powerful tool in the box. The insurance should reflect the risk. Another tool is requiring FULL disclosure by realtors trying to sell such a structure. Lastly, build sensibly taking the risk into account. If you are building into a flood zone, require the structure to be elevated above the base flood elevation. If you are building in known hurricane territory, require wind resistant building on top of the elevations. For landslide, require the developer to stabilize the slope BEFORE issuing the building permits for the structure. Had that happened in this case, those buildings wouldn't have been built because the cost to stabilize the hillside would be astronomical pricing the land out of development.

about a month ago

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