>> What we are trying to do is encourage acceptance of different types of families. What is this "different types of families" you're talking about? Breaking news - 2 guys (or girls) living together doesn't make a family. No, your liberal/progressive/whatever opinion doesn't count. The core purpose of human family is reproduction. Some families have 1 male and several female members, some - other way around. But - from the dawn of time family didn't consist of members of same sex. And homosexuality was very acceptable in ancient Rome/Greece/other places.
So GeneralEmergency guy is absolutely right - this IS inappropriate subject for young children. Yep, discussion about almost any sexual subject is inappropriate.
And yes, school firewall should be set to "default deny" and whitelist is supposed to be very short.
>> So... where is the angry mob you're talking about You should grasp concept of proportions. For angry mob to form, _very_ bad things should happen. Bad in scale of Europe-start-of-20-century, not US-recession-21-century. Usually famine+cruel government+unfair justice system speed things up. Your example doesn't really count - people still have right for assembly, for speech, for vote etc.
>> how can you guarantee that they'll be sensible enough to only guillotine the bad guys You can not. And they will not "guillotine only bad guys". Again - look at Europe and beginning of 20's century.
In short - I don't wish you to be there when such stuff happen. It's bloody and ugly.
>> they have the tools to do so. Of cause they do! They are _SPY_ agency for ***'s sake! Of cause police/NSA/CIA/Mossad/GRU/KGB can make your life very miserable (and short). That's what they do. The only problem with this ridiculous NSA dragnet is enormous wasting of public's money on stuff that have nothing to do with safety/security of the state. Spying on Merkel (or other european politicians) ? No problem, probably she/they should fund her own agency better. Getting caught IS a problem, and this is indicator of incompetency.
If only someone could invent such a justice system, where guilt and punishment would be decided by humans, and not by machines. I suggest we call those people "judges". Wait a minute - we already _have_ such a system. In short - your " black and white justice system" is strawman. It doesn't exists in real life - that's why you appointing judge (and jury in some countries).
Now, NSA doesn't enforce anything. They maybe spying on all you do, but in the end of day - it's police who will arrest you and judge who will convict you.
>> If we REALLY wanted speed limit laws enforced, why are we complaining about speed traps Because different people ballance convenience and safety differently. Some prefer convenience (speeding) while other safety (speed traps). Whether speeding is actually dangerous or not - is another matter entirely.
>> If we want a car to NEVER run a red light, why are red light cameras being shouted down in cities across the country? Short explanation - because majority of people are incredibly shortsighted. Actually, you DO want to enforce traffic laws 100% of the time. On some systems (hint: it runs on rails) you have no choice, but enforce it 100% of the time.
In my opinion, all this article is largely bullshit. Yes, it is correct that if some powerful entity wants to harass you - it can. Government spies, police, IRS, even firefighters and local municipality. They all can make your life miserable. It doesn't happen (too often) because of several things: your government (down to local level) is (at some extend) elected and justice system (in average case) is fair. When those condition violated too hard for too long - people will (and had) revolt. No amount of spying will prevent it. On the other case - if you want to be political activist - prepare to be spied upon. Rulers spied on their rivals (external as well as domestic) from the dawn of time. Kings spied on their siblings as well as on another kings. Oh, you want to protest some stuff - please tell us who you are. Too afraid - I guess your issue is not important enough.
What a complete and utter bullshit. Violent video games, you say? News flash: basically, ALL games that young boys play starting at age of 5 are violent. They (boys) don't need video hardware to turn stick into sword, magic staff or rifle. But - lo and behold: they can tell exactly where the game ends and real fighting starts. So when I tell my son "no, you can't beat other children" he completely understand that I don't mean "don't play with toy sword".
Now, there's kernel of truth in "video games are bad". It is generally accepted fact that children (age 5-10) should play video games little as possible. Not that it's some kind of "harmful influence", but it bring nothing for child development. And no, "educational games" are useless too: there's plenty of research about it.
This kind of BS articles comes out when author confuses battle with "court battle". In a "good old days", when country invited another country's company to mine something, company build a mine and THEN being thrown out: that's was real casus belli. Which means, that very real battle (one with dead people) will take place. Probably more than one. Now: some docs are exchanged, money change hands in worst case. Maybe next time Costa Rica's government will act more responsively when issuing mining permits? Maybe more detailed contracts will get written? Who knows? What we do know - is that _war_ is not expected here. It's a good thing.
Let's say we'll have it your way: company can't sue country in whatever-court. What are alternatives? Hire private army? When some Costa Rica decides to screw a megacorp, and my retirement money depends on stock/profits of said megacorp - I don't like it. Do you suggest that if Canadian company wants to extract settlement from Costa Rica's government, the only "legitimate" option is for Canada to invade Costa Rica? You didn't like an idea of "court battle", so I guess you probably prefer a real one? Or should Canadian citizens just cover the losses?
You seems to forget, that suing is preferable, civilized form of conflict resolution; as opposed to plain old shooting each other.
So, both of you seriously proud of the fact that you're unable to comprehend why you need a license to operate potentially dangerous machine?
It's also mind boggling how some US folks confuse "freedom" and "I have no ID card". Allow me to educate both of you. In (former) USSR you didn't have to carry your ID with you. And no, police did not routinely stopped random people on streets and asked "papers". What purpose would that serve?
Now, here's another "revealing" piece: DUI is bloody dangerous. Not for driver, mind you. But for every single car and pedestrian around him. That's not "nothing to fear - nothing to hide" case. Don't agree - don't drive.
Basically, what the judge said is correct: "just because you-all have set up a system ..., that doesn't in any way lessen the government's right to receive that information".
In other words, US have laws which explicitly allow wiretapping. Nothing extraordinary about it. Remember, this government official gave sword testimony, and judge have no reason to think he's lying. If this official says "we're not looking", what do you thing judge will do, say: "nah, don't believe you"?
>> ...and this kind of attitude is exactly why these attacks on due process and rights are so dangerous
You are confused about what due process is. Since this is different in every country, let me tell you what it is NOT. It is NOT blind application of pre-coded (in laws) rules. That's what computer does. What a judge does, is another thing entirely.
Let me bring you an example. You drop a hammer from your window and someone is killed. Only human can decide whether you killed someone in cold blood or just was careless. If you're already convicted in murder felon, you will have _very_ hard time arguing "just careless".
That's why in almost _any_ trial intent and character matter. So, yes, it is important whether I "like that guy".
>> Turning a doorknob is not making a request -- it's physically opening
So, by this logic, if I have a door operated by button it will be different, because pressing the button is "a request"? That's not how criminal justice (supposed to) work.
>> A "mere" URL *as presented by the server* and then ...
I think you have no idea how SQL-injection works. You _also_ take "URL as presented by server" and modify it to your needs. Yes, it's quite different from discussed case, but that's not what is argued. The argument is "just because it's URL it doesn't mean it's harmless"; as one can see slightly modified URL can bring a lot of action.
>> They're comparing apples and oranges.
Comparing apples and oranges is OK if all you need to estimate mass of cargo, for example.
I don't mean that guy did "41-months-in-jail-serious-crime". But, I do mean that DOJ's logic is not "insane".
>> Not contacting AT&T doesn't matter
Wrong, it does. It shows intent. You saying that "this wasn't done maliciously", and DOJ arguing otherwise. That's a core of an argument, the rest is technical explanation about what's happened.
Now, going public _can_ be seen as malicious (attack on reputation, for example).
Basically, that's why courts are ruled by judges (or juries) and not by machines - to decide about such fuzzy thing as "intent".
>> Furthermore, they didn't need to "ask permission" because they sent a request to the server and the server answered.
That's irrelevant. If I failed to lock the door, this doesn't mean that it's OK to enter. It doesn't matter that you made a "request" (turned the knob) and door-lock "answered". It's still trespassing.
>> It does this by arguing that because SQL injection attacks can happen via a URL, therefore any "hack" via a URL can be a malicious hack.
Argument here is presented incorrectly. What DOJ tries to tell, is that "mere URL" can be quite dangerous thing, depends on content, like in SQL-injection.
So, like in many other cases it's matter of intent. If this guy is known to be "world-class jerk", he will (probably) have hard time trying to prove that his intentions were harmless.
>>> Remember, guns don't kill people. Desperate people kill people.
So, what do you think guns do? Make funny noises? Guess what - guns kill people, that's what they made for. Sorry, correction: guns _only_ made to kill.
And while I agree that videogames have nothing to do with murder, guns (the real ones) are very related. And yes, military training is also related.
>> I regard guns as a fundamental right, as stated literally in the Constitution.
Do you know how fucking insane this stuff sounds is for any non-US person? WTF do you need a gun for? Really? Is that some form of entertainment? If you love shooting - why not join the military (I heard US spend on military more than rest of the world combined).
In Israel, there are have real terrorists and war-crazy neighbors you can't have a gun "just because". Even if soldiers carry their M16 with them all_the_time, even at homes.
So maybe it IS time to change culture and realize, like rest of the world did, that guns belong to army/police. It's not a "fundamental right", in no shape of form