The Logician's Favorite Techdirt Posts Of The Week

from the logic-please dept

Greetings. I have been invited to share this week's digest of favorite posts -- in this case, mine -- and as the logical choice was, of course, to accept, I have chosen to do so. In thinking about how to proceed, I have arrived at the conclusion that to effectively reach and deter those who would threaten our fundamental rights, we must first understand how they think, and why it is that they do so. I have, therefore, selected a number of posts, which, I believe, help to illustrate the fallacies and shortsightedness by which they operate, as well as the motivations which drive them. Let us begin:

First is textbook example of government/corporate propaganda -- one which should be saved for future study in understanding the difference between such posturing and actual, ethical journalism. It comes in the form of a video released by ICE in which they congratulate themselves on the numerous incidents of censorship they were responsible for last year, while making multiple dishonest and highly illogical claims and omissions, all of which Mike clearly illustrates and dissects. Such as ICE's deceptions about job losses, conflations between counterfeiting and infringement, the yearlong censorship of dajaz1.com, and their inability to admit that the PSA that they used on the sites they censored was, in fact, made by Universal.

A recent study has confirmed what many of us already know: mainstream media news outlets have all but completely ignored SOPA/PIPA. This is, of course, logical in that these news outlets are owned by the very mega-corporations which support these laws. It also highlights how neutered the mainstream media has become in that they no longer answer to us, but only to those in power and will no longer make an honest effort to keep them in check despite that being the original mandate of their existence. It is but one facet of the merger of corporation and state that has taken place in this country.

Rep. Lamar Smith's continuing and irrational deafness to all opposition to SOPA has recently resulted in the creation of a poster illustrating this very point. His unwillingness to admit just how widespread the opposition actually is merely shows where his loyalties and interests truly lie -- himself. However, as Mike has pointed out, ignoring such opposition will not cause it to disappear. Rather, it continues to grow on an almost daily basis, despite the state of denial in which Smith and his fellow SOPA supporters continually exist.

Another group that exists in a perpetual denial of reality is the TSA. They recently posted their list of top ten catches for 2011, not one of which was an actual terrorist. They boast about accomplishing, in reality, nothing, in a vain attempt to justify their own existence. But as anyone who has followed their actions over the last several years with a clear and logical mind understands, they crossed that line long ago. Even the founder of the TSA has admitted that the organization is a failure. Yet this parasitic organization is allowed to live on due to government hysteria over a threat that is far less of a danger to anyone than they will ever admit. That and the desire for control, a trait they share with those who support SOPA/PIPA and other laws like them.

Desperation is another characteristic of SOPA/PIPA supporters and copyright maximalists, as was shown at CES this week. Sandra Aistars from the Copyright Alliance spent much of her time at the SOPA/PIPA panel -- which Mike, himself, attended -- invoking vague and broad talking points, accusing those who challenged her of the very same empty rhetoric and hyberbole she herself was consistently using. Much as politicians do, she relied on nonanswers and doublespeak rather than actually addressing the questions asked of her. She did not even seem to realize that the very sites which SOPA/PIPA were designed to target are immune to the bills due to their own convoluted language.

SOPA supporters also tend to exhibit a hypocrisy rivaled only by that of politicians, of which many are one and the same. For instance, an opinion piece in the Salt Lake Tribune pointed to by the MPAA and its lobbying front/astroturf group CreativeAmerica, was actually in large part copied directly from statements made by other pro-SOPA lobbyists and remixed to form the op-ed. This behavior is not wrong in and of itself, and yet SOPA supporters wish to criminalize it. They partake of the very behavior they claim to oppose, which merely illustrates that they have little to no understanding of human nature or the nature of creativity. Their motives, then, do not involve the preservation of creative works, but rather the preservation of their bank accounts.

Lastly, even libraries have begun to come under fire, through no fault of their own. The major publishers have been supporting SOPA/PIPA, and, in so doing, have deliberately begun attempting to limit what libraries can do. These publishers have begun steadily withdrawing the access to free content which libraries have traditionally provided. In contrast to libraries' fundamental purpose, they wish instead to commercialize them and replace the traditional structure with a rental model which they would undoubtedly seek to control. As I see it, any attack on libraries is an attack on knowledge itself and cannot be allowed to stand.

We have seen that the maximalist mindset which drives those who support SOPA, PIPA, and laws like them is one driven by deception, denial, greed, hypocrisy, and an irrational need for control. C.S. Lewis once observed in The Magician's Nephew that "the trouble with making yourself stupider than you really are is that you very often succeed." Humans have an uncanny capacity for convincing themselves of almost anything, as Lewis' Uncle Andrew character clearly illustrates. Andrew did not wish to believe that Aslan and the Narnian animals could talk, and he believed it so strongly that he could not hear them do so. The same is true of maximalists. They have convinced themselves so completely of their view -- either through money, power, ignorance, or a combination of them -- that even when shown the actual data in plain language, they will not accept it. That is the mindset that must either be changed or overcome, if our rights and freedom are to be restored and protected.



Reader Comments (rss)

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  • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
     
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    Rick (profile), Jan 14th, 2012 @ 12:48pm

    Save Our World

    Save Our World 2012 social network will only work when your family, friends, & peers, utilize the tools that this site will provided for you!! We will essentially provide these tools as time proceeds, & members continue to join SOW12.org This site has been created for the people & designed by the people. This is your site & opportunity to be able to share, & finally have your very own voice for your creative, positive ideas about the critical subject matter & issues in our world of today! We, the staff at Save Our World 2012 are very excited to meet you & welcome all with open arms!!

     

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    anonymous, Jan 14th, 2012 @ 1:12pm

    thanks to politicians and the fact that they have always been more concerned with how big the cheque is that has been dropped into their campaign fund than anything else, they haven't seen what has been going on for decades. that is, that the entertainment industries have steadily and steadfastly been getting copyright laws added, changed, extended and increased every time some new gadget comes into the market place. allowing these copyright changes has allowed the industries to forgo any type of competing in that market place. as soon as they felt pressured, they simply greased some palms to remove the competition in what became the best way, bribing the politicians that should have said 'if you want a better deal, do what every other business does, offer a better deal to customers. dont keep running to us to get laws to suit you and only you'. the only way out now is to literally start again. make those industries do what they should have done all along. compete for their corner of the market, instead of forcing others out of business and locking things done with unjust, self serving laws, whilst lieing through their teeth about the harm being done to them and those they are supposedly protecting!

     

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    William Malette, Jan 14th, 2012 @ 2:02pm

    Save or Reboot

    The tightly wedded relationship between Government and Corporations is exactly the same condition that started the revolution that brought this country into existence. Need I say more?

     

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    Jason V, Jan 14th, 2012 @ 4:10pm

    SOPA/PIPA news

    So my local news stations aired article on SOPA/PIPA all it took was calling the station talking to the producers and sending email outlining the issues with links to corroborating articles. Mike I hope you dont mind I used alot of your articles to make my arguments.

    http://www.king5.com/news/technology/Cheezburger-founder-organizing-anti-SOPA-blackout-137326688 .html
    http://www.komonews.com/news/local/Proposed--134294208.html?tab=video&c=y

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 14th, 2012 @ 4:27pm

    what a dry and boring article, it appears really no logic was applied, simply parroting what Masnick preaches to you.

    One thing I can say, is that you have managed to learn the Masnick technique of saying many words, without actually making a single valid argument.

    I cant even seem to find anywhere in that article where you have quoted a single (ANY) fact !!.

    Therefore logic would say, that either you are ignorant or lying ? Logic OR gate (any 1 gives a 1), so it might a logical AND (all 1's give a 1).

     

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      Hephaestus (profile), Jan 14th, 2012 @ 4:38pm

      Re:

      What with the talk of logic gates? Did you read an idiots guide to computers recently?

      Now take this bag of Purina Troll food and go back under your bridge.

       

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      Suja (profile), Jan 14th, 2012 @ 7:12pm

      Re:

      parroting what Masnick preaches to you.

      so who's words are you parroting?

      is that you have managed to learn the Masnick technique of saying many words, without actually making a single valid argument.

      wait, Masnick had that? i believe the technique was first invented by a certain group, i'm sure you know who i'm talking about... the name begins with T and ends with L

       

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      The Groove Tiger (profile), Jan 14th, 2012 @ 7:13pm

      Re:

      ( ∀x ( A(x) & B(x) ) ) ∼ ( ∀x A(x) & ∀x B(x) )

      ( ∃x ( A(x) ∨ B(x) ) ) ∼ ( ∃x A(x) ∨ ∃x B(x) )

      ( ∀x ( A(x) & B ) ) ∼ ( ∀x A(x) & B )
      ( ∀x ( B & A(x) ) ) ∼ ( B & ∀x A(x) )

      ( ∃x ( A(x) ∨ B ) ) ∼ ( ∃x A(x) ∨ B )
      ( ∃x ( B ∨ A(x) ) ) ∼ ( B ∨ ∃x A(x) )

      ( ∃x ( A(x) & B ) ) ∼ ( ∃x A(x) & B )
      ( ∃x ( B & A(x) ) ) ∼ ( B & ∃x A(x) )

      ( ∀x A(x) ∨ B ) ⊃ ( ∀x ( A(x) ∨ B ) )
      ( B ∨ ∀x A(x) ) ⊃ ( ∀x ( B ∨ A(x) ) )
      ( ∀x ( A(x) ∨ B ) ) ∼ ( ∀x A(x) ∨ B )
      ( ∀x ( B ∨ A(x) ) ) ∼ ( B ∨ ∀x A(x)

      ( ∃x ( A(x) & B(x) ) ) ⊃ ( ∃x A(x) & ∃x B(x) )

      ( ∀x A(x) ∨ ∀x B(x) ) ⊃ ( ∀x ( A(x) ∨ B(x) ) )


      Better?

       

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    darryl, Jan 14th, 2012 @ 4:39pm

    Does Masnick pay you to write - or take the profit for himself ?

    You do understand that Masnick and TD are A PART OF THE ENTERTAINMENT INDUSTRY ?? Right ?

    D

    oh I geuess it is ok for masnick to live of the entertainment industry, after all, if he can get the US (real) entertainment industry damaged, there will be more people with nothing to do, who "might" come here for some amusment.

    Everyone on this site could be getting their entertainment from other sources, but if Masnick gets his way, he will make more money..

    and after all, why else is he doing this TD thing ? I am sure it is not for the good of his health or reputation.

    No, logic would say, the reason Masnick posts so much is to get page hits, and therefore get MONEY !!!!!!!!!!!

    And you have to admit, what Masnick states makes for a funny/amusing fairy tale..

    It is also amusing that Masnick is fighting so hard to shut down or restrict the very thing that provides his income!

     

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      Hephaestus (profile), Jan 14th, 2012 @ 5:00pm

      Re: Does Masnick pay you to write - or take the profit for himself ?

      @darryl - Did your parents drop you on your head as a child? Was it the lead based paint? Are your parents siblings? What is it with that thing you keep in a box?

       

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      The Logician (profile), Jan 14th, 2012 @ 6:57pm

      Re: Does Masnick pay you to write - or take the profit for himself ?

      You would be an example of the mindset I was speaking of, darryl, if you did not so often present yourself in such an unstable manner. And as for evidence, the posts I linked to contain such information. If you cannot be bothered to click a link, there is little anyone can do for you. And I note that you provide no evidence of your own, merely supposition. Therefore, your argument is invalid. Everyone here knows you are not to be trusted, darryl. So why do you remain? It is illogical for you to do so.

       

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        Hephaestus (profile), Jan 14th, 2012 @ 7:35pm

        Re: Re: Does Masnick pay you to write - or take the profit for himself ?

        From what I have read from darryl, he seems to be an ESL (English as a Second Language) type, a bot, drunk, stoned or an unstable person laid off from the entertainment industry. Take your pick.

        PS - Well done article, and luv the rational spock persona. Reason and digging for the truth is not something we see here much. Keep it up.

         

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          Anonymous Coward, Jan 15th, 2012 @ 1:21am

          Re: Re: Re: Does Masnick pay you to write - or take the profit for himself ?

          He's an Aussie and an insult to those named any variation of his name.

           

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      Suja (profile), Jan 14th, 2012 @ 7:13pm

      Re: Does Masnick pay you to write - or take the profit for himself ?

      there will be more people with nothing to do, who "might" come here for some amusment.

      you mean... like you do?

       

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      btrussell (profile), Jan 15th, 2012 @ 4:08am

      Re: Does Masnick pay you to write - or take the profit for himself ?

      You two are the reason we come here darryl & darryl. If you quit coming here the site would lose 85% of its' traffic.

      You are making Mike the Masnickificent money. Sharing your ideas/thoughts for free. Shame on you!

       

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      Loki, Jan 15th, 2012 @ 10:29am

      Re: Does Masnick pay you to write - or take the profit for himself ?

      You mentioned logic.
      Logic would be a giant iceberg.
      You would be the Titanic.
      I saw a movie once when the two were introduced to one another.

       

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      Rikuo (profile), Jan 16th, 2012 @ 1:57am

      Re: Does Masnick pay you to write - or take the profit for himself ?

      "oh I geuess it is ok for masnick to live of the entertainment industry, after all, if he can get the US (real) entertainment industry damaged, there will be more people with nothing to do, who "might" come here for some amusment."

      - So, Mike is evil because he wants people to look at his website?

      "Everyone on this site could be getting their entertainment from other sources, but if Masnick gets his way, he will make more money..
      - So, its evil if you get your entertainment from someplace that's not Hollywood?
      - So, he's evil for wanting to make more money. To go by that logic, Hollywood must also be evil.

      "No, logic would say, the reason Masnick posts so much is to get page hits, and therefore get MONEY !!!!!!!!!!!
      - So, a guy sets up a website, and is somehow evil for wanting to get page hits, and advertising revenue?


      "It is also amusing that Masnick is fighting so hard to shut down or restrict the very thing that provides his income!"
      - Now, this is where you have taken a left turn into la'la land. The very thing that provides Mike's income on this site, advertising revenue...since when has Mike fought to STOP ad revenue? Eyeballs viewing his articles - since when has he fought to destroy the internet?

      God, darryl...I AM BEGGING YOU! Please in the future, read what you write before posting and come up with coherent sentences and arguments! I want to debate with the other side of the copyright argument, but all I EVER get from the other side is people like you, who literally vomit out words that by some insane chance form a barely logical sentence.

       

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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 14th, 2012 @ 4:45pm

    The only way to end bills that threaten democracy is to end the root cause of it and that is copyright.

    It must end.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 14th, 2012 @ 4:46pm

    Copyright and the monopolies it grants are the real problem for society the real threat to democracy, from there all kinds of evil sprout, that is the thing that needs changing.

    Without it the bad actors have no way of instigating those bad bills.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 14th, 2012 @ 4:58pm

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 14th, 2012 @ 5:06pm

    The MPAA gangs up on Jammie Thomas-Rasset (mother of four).
    www.p2pon.com/2012/01/11/jammie-thomas-now-fighting-against-both-riaa-and-mpaa/

    Copyright enabling people to sue mothers and ruin their lifes forever because they can.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 14th, 2012 @ 5:07pm

    File sharing on the rise globally, nobody cares about copyright laws apparently.

    www.p2pon.com/2012/01/13/report-filesharing-on-the-rise/

     

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      Suja (profile), Jan 14th, 2012 @ 7:22pm

      Re:

      well, nobody except the MAFIAA and misguide/control freak artists who still honestly&vehemently believe copyright is like some kinda god-given air they breathe if you take it away they shrivel up and die.....

       

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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 14th, 2012 @ 8:54pm

    That is the mindset that must either be changed or overcome, if our rights and freedom are to be restored and protected.

    One method that I've never seen suggested is something that I think might have a good chance of working: therapy. The old saying "power corrupts" is fairly accurate.
    Many of the problems in the world today are caused by the inability of the ruling class to relate to other people. For whatever reason, positions of power have never been coupled with mandatory courses on basic empathy. The result is corrupt, inhumane leadership.
    Some people might just write them off as being "evil", but I see their condition as more of a psychological disorder. They need help.

     

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      Hephaestus (profile), Jan 14th, 2012 @ 10:44pm

      Re:

      My favorite method of changing politicians mind is fear. Fear of getting voted out of office. Fear of having the other guy supported. Fear of pissing of the population.

      The things politicians should realize is, fear motivates, and the internet never forgets.

       

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      RIchZ (profile), Jan 15th, 2012 @ 5:35pm

      Re:

      I don't know...I'm pretty sure some of them are actually evil. Look at Lamar Smith - he can't really be blind to all the opposition, so the alternative is that he's evil. He _just doesn't care_ what his constituents think. If they vote him out of office, he's pretty confidant his MPAA/RIAA/whoever paymasters will reward him with a lucrative job somewhere in their organizations - probably in a lobbying arm. And then he won't have to put up with all the sniping from us any more. Win-win for him.

       

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    firefly (profile), Jan 15th, 2012 @ 10:12am

    How Senator Leahy thinks

    I couldn't agree more that it is important to understand how they think, but there's a lot more diversity among "them" than we realize. For example, If you listen (about half way through the program) to Pat Leahy on why he opposes "piracy", you can hear that he has been blinded by his passion against stealing. So the approach to take with Leahy is to explain that eating Gilfeather turnips isn't stealing. I think we might be getting through to Leahy, and we might even be able to turn him, but first we have to understand him.

    Certainly things are getting shaken up here in Vermont - first Leahy's announcement that he's backing off the DNS parts of PIPA, and then Vermont Public Radio reported that Senator Leahy's chief of staff is leaving to become Obama's liaison with the Senate - maybe good news for Vermont, but bad news for the country.

    FYI John Gilfeather, of Wardsboro, VT, cut the tops and bottoms off his turnips before selling them so they couldn't be grown by anyone else - DRM for the 19th century. They escaped his control, however, and are very popular here in Vermont.

     

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    Errol Mesa, Jan 16th, 2012 @ 8:58am

    Logic

    I agree on the Logic factor that is really a big determination. Someone mentioned the same on http://Strategybox.com good article on it.

     

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    Hill Sanders, Jan 18th, 2012 @ 2:06pm

    copyrights,an protectional patents

    whatever the monitored man creates in writings,an designs;a mans mind that fed govt made public 30 years ago,an no protest of the privacy invasion,as the public throughout nationalities have no protest of being programmed to a gifted black mans mind,as no protest causes its continuance,an whoever chooses is within right to copy from a mind the fed govt cia mind control tech has even conglomerate mogul firms in promotion of it being labeled white supremacy amazement.Wow land of the free,an minds programmed to a mans mind communistically.H.S.

     

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