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Comment Re:Well duh (Score 1) 139

Well, sort of. The problem is that facebook (et al) is not a news aggregator, it is an advertising and publicity company paid to keep people on the app and revealing information about themselves that allows them to be put in easily exploited marketing groups. It is a meme-generation machine for rent. Why is it any surprise that the constant attempt to hack people's judgement and social interactions to trick them into wanting the latest crappy crap leads to collateral damage to their social and mental health?

Comment Re:Simple solution to the H1B problem exists. (Score 1) 834

Used appropriately, H1B holders actually contribute expertise and productivity to US economy, which is a plus. Teaching and research positions at Universities are examples where this is obvious -- the value of having the foreign worker's expertise is direct and clear because he or she was compared directly to US candidates in the selection process and one of their major roles is to educate US students. But my understanding is that educational institutions have different rules from businesses. Educational institutions are able to choose a foreigner because they are the best applicant. Businesses must show that there are NO qualified domestic applicants. So the headline doesn't make sense to me, it's already required. They just aren't enforcing it very well.

But it would not surprise me at all for an executive order to be oblivious to the fact that this is already required. The track record so far indicates that the Trump administration does not actually understand how the government that they are now in charge of actually works. The most likely thing seems to be that they will phrase the same requirement in some way that is stupidly incompatible with the actual laws and it will just make a huge mess with so many loopholes that it will get worse instead of better. Competence is so underrated.

Comment Re:Why? "Signal not an option for many people"... (Score 1) 70

The point is that if WhatsApp is not blocked and Signal is, using WhatsApp is better than other options. You say yourself that the single block-able route is not the difference, its that one is blocked and the other isn't. As for the article, I would say that if someone's life or freedom depends on whether WhatsApp is secure -- they better well understand how this vulnerability applies to them based on their specific usage pattern, not based on some generalization from a newspaper article.

Comment Re:text of email (Score 2) 274

Given the nature of the hack, it seems like if Podesta had just enabled two-factor like he was told, the typo wouldn't have mattered and even giving the hackers his password wouldn't have mattered. The IT guy says right there that two-factor should be enabled as soon as possible, and even implies that it already should have been. Actually this level of person not using two-factor is just madness. And how does the first part of the email even make sense? Why would he use mfisher's two-step verification codes?

Comment Re:Headline correct; summary wrong (Score 1) 399

I won't say there aren't districts where there is waste, there are plenty, but one does have to build and maintain buildings, which can be quite expensive. There are also pensions to consider, which are not always managed sensibly. So a lot depends on what is in that $18k figure. If it includes facilities and the district made a really bad facilities decision 15-20 years ago, that can be a huge chunk right there that the teachers don't see one penny of. And in that situation, blind cuts will just hurt the people who are just doing their job because the overhead of that bad decision is probably impossible to change. (e.g. a bond issue or similar)

And this idea that parents pay taxes for the education of their own children is madness. Taxes that go to schools principally pay for the education of *other people's* children. That is and always has been what public schools are for. It seems like this should be obvious, since people don't just pay those taxes while their children are in school. So the thing you should argue for is better schools at the same cost. The community has already decided it is worth $18k per year per student, but that value for that money can be improved.

Comment Re:Headline correct; summary wrong (Score 1) 399

But the problem is that, as you say, the $30M gift probably cost Alphabet half that but they probably wrote off the full amount. i.e. it's just a scam to get a $15M tax write-off. And it's probably less than half so they get an even bigger fraction as write-off. If they gave that hardware to employees, they could still write it off as a business expense, but only at cost. So this is the employee being told "instead of giving you a gift, we are giving a poor child's school your gift (which they will probably never use), and ourselves an even bigger gift as a result." Because Alphabet itself is clearly the neediest party in this situation.

Comment False equivalence (Score 1) 335

A few reporters getting duped is NOT the same as intentionally and repeatedly manufacturing fake news. This is actually a strategy of the fake news pushers... try to dress something up well enough to get picked up by the more reputable sources. Then declare them irriputable when one of dozens of false-flag operations gets through. But the point is that this story was (a) discredited by other news sources and (b) will be or already has been retracted by the WP and (c) reporters will lose their jobs or be demoted, not promoted like they would at a fake news operation.

Also, I'm sure that Rolling Stone has been scouring the Washington Post for something poorly sourced like this, since it was the Post that eviscerated Rolling Stone for the expose on gang rape on college campuses, which turned out to be fabricated by the victim (though actually in a very convincing way).

The problem isn't fake news, it's a public who can't pay attention longer than one 24-hour news cycle. The real facts are almost never known within 24 hours. If people drew their conclusions after there had been enough time for consideration and cross-checking, fake news would have no power. Just like superpacs would have no power if people would just not believe a word of what someone paid for them to hear, duh.

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