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  • Feb 22nd, 2018 @ 10:21am

    Re: Re:

    Maybe it's based on the idea that (even) people who didn't really need antidepressants in the first place might have a disproportionate reaction to the changes in internal chemical balance from going off of them?

    I'm not sure the conclusions are sound even based on that, but it's the best logic I can think of for connecting the two statements from the first and last sentences of that comment.

  • Feb 22nd, 2018 @ 10:18am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    You said "it's more newsworthy when it happens in America" (by implication, vs. when it happens somewhere else).

    This is equivalent to saying "it's less newsworthy when it happens in places other than America" (by implication, vs. when it happens in America).

    PaulT did not say that you said such things are "less newsworthy in the US"; he said that you said they are "less newsworthy than in the US". (Emphasis mine.)

    To my eye, this seems like a perfectly consistent representation of the position you expressed.

  • Feb 22nd, 2018 @ 8:44am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: partisanship

    Do you have any references for specific Trump statements from the campaign which make it unambiguously clear that "drain the swamp" was talking about lobbying and monied interests and so forth?

    I wasn't paying close enough attention to his speeches back then that I'd have a hard time believing I'd missed something, but in looking back on what I do remember, I haven't been able to dredge up any comments involving that phrase which would contradict the idea that the "deep state" is pretty-much always what was being meant. (With perhaps an attempt to mislead the uninitiated into thinking that he might mean those other things.)

    If there is sufficiently-clear evidence to contradict that idea, I'd be glad to be corrected on the subject.

  • Feb 22nd, 2018 @ 8:40am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: partisanship

    Nope. Like every other Cabinet department, it's part of the executive branch.

    The only parts of the judicial branch that I'm aware of are the actual courts - the forums where cases (criminal and otherwise) are filed under the law, and the people who staff them, and most particularly the judges who rule on those cases. (And I think the juries which serve as finders of fact, when applicable.)

    With possible limited exceptions (e.g. bailiffs), those who investigate and enforce the law are separate from the courts which judge the law.

  • Feb 22nd, 2018 @ 6:07am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: partisanship

    Eh, the Constitution disagrees. There's supposed to be a separation between the judicial, the executive, and the legislative branches. That Trump is merging them is unconstitutional.

    I think the argument is that the DOJ, FBI, CIA, and NSA are all parts of the executive branch, so the Constitution's separation-of-powers-between-branches division doesn't come into play.

    If there are places where Trump has been trying to blur the lines between the branches of government (as opposed to the branches of the executive branch) in any meaningful way, I'm fairly sure I haven't heard about it.

  • Feb 22nd, 2018 @ 5:16am


    Isn't "King me" more a thing in checkers than in chess?

  • Feb 22nd, 2018 @ 5:15am

    Re: Re: Re: partisanship

    What are you thinking is being referred to when "the swamp" is mentioned?

    A lot of people seem to think it's talking about lobbying, monied influence, and so forth, but I don't think that's what it's meant to refer to at all.

    I think it's meant to refer to what is also called the "deep state": the entrenched career government officials who persist in their positions across administrations, are not accountable to the electorate, and - by way of those positions - thwart the attempts of those who do get elected (and thus *are (presumed to be) accountable to the electorate) to do anything those entrenched officials don't want done.

    A. K. A. the experienced people who actually know how government operates and have the skills and institutional knowledge to actually get things done.

    Talking about draining that type of "swamp" "into the White House" wouldn't really seem to make any sense.

    Trump and his appointees do seem to have been doing a fairly decent job of cleaning a lot of those people out, and I suspect that that - even more than his changes to regulations and his stacking of the federal bench and so forth - will be the part of the damage done by his administration that's going to be the hardest, and take the longest, to reverse.

  • Feb 22nd, 2018 @ 4:05am

    Re: Re: Lies, damned lies, and journalism.

    By "top of the list", he appears to have meant "the list of specifically-enumerated rights, when they got around to enumerating those rights in amendments to be on the safe side, after having initially tried to not enumerate any in the original Constitution".

    IIRC the original argument way back when was that enumerating any rights would lead people towards thinking that any rights not enumerated did not exist, and they wanted to go with an explicit-grant-of-powers rather than explicit-grant-of-rights model, but after the Constitution originally passed the side arguing that failing to enumerate important rights would inevitably lead those rights to be ignored later on won out.

    And indeed, the two rights mentioned - free speech and (by paraphrase) bearing arms - are covered by the first two Amendments in the list of Amendments.

    gun owners who keep shooting up schools and other crowds every few weeks

    More frequently than that, actually, depending on your threshold for "shooting up".

    When I first heard about the recent mass shooting that's in current public discussion, which occurred approximately six weeks in to 2018, it was cited as being the eighth school shooting thus far in 2018.

    Now, they didn't specify their criteria for what they were counting as a school shooting; I've seen reports that some such counts include things as inapplicable as "a police officer doing a firearms-related demonstration to a high-school class flubbed the demonstration and shot himself in the foot while trying to get the gun out of the holster" through "a gun went off accidentally, hitting nobody" all the way down as far as "a student whose family keeps guns in the house forgot that he had one in the car when he was driving to school". And certainly most of the other seven will not have been on anything near the scale of Number Eight.

    But even if half of those eight turn out to be invalid, that's still considerably more frequent than "every few weeks".

  • Feb 22nd, 2018 @ 3:36am

    Re: Re: Re:


    Your beard is just ridiculous.

  • Feb 21st, 2018 @ 2:31pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Just as a nit, I don't think "the store" necessarily implies a brick-and-mortar shopfront; last I checked (which admittedly may not have been recently), it was still relatively common to refer to online merchants as "stores", or at least "Web stores".

    Also, the Facebook logo being present on the packaging does not necessarily imply "requires Facebook in order to use the device" (although it should certainly be enough of a red flag to get someone who's anti-Facebook to do extra research before buying); it could simply imply "supports Facebook connectivity", much as a Facebook logo on a Website or in an app often means nothing more than "we make it easy for you to share (things related to us) via Facebook!".

    I agree that "not using Facebook or anything like it" isn't necessarily anything to boast about, though. Even I don't tend to bring my personal Facebook avoidance up in public discussions, even ones where Facebook is the topic, unless it's directly relevant; I might mention it if Facebook comes up in individual conversation, but that's about as far as that goes.

  • Feb 21st, 2018 @ 8:17am

    Re: Re:

    I think that may be a bit farther than is justified.

    I, too, would return a product if I discovered after buying it that it would not work without Facebook authentication - but that does not imply that I wouldn't do the research before buying; I would, and generally do, and then don't buy such products (though I can't remember any examples of such products just off the top of my head).

    All it says is that if I missed the requirement in my pre-purchase research, or if I failed to do the research in one instance and it turned out that that instance was one where it actually mattered, I would go through with the return.

    That seems like a reasonable position, to me - if nothing else, then because such a requirement makes the product useless to me, because I do not have a Facebook account and (for reasons of my own) refuse to create one.

  • Feb 21st, 2018 @ 4:29am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: I have to admit...

    I forgot to add: clearly, the way to deal with that (even accepting his premise) is to put in regulators who do want to remove or rein in the monopolies, but he either doesn't think that that's possible or doesn't trust that those regulators won't be replaced by monopoly-supporting ones again later on.

  • Feb 21st, 2018 @ 4:26am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: I have to admit...

    I'm moderately certain that that poorly-constructed sentence was meant to convey "if the regulators didn't want the monopolies to exist, the monopolies would not exist", with the intended implication that "therefore the regulators do want the monopolies to exist" and subsequently "therefore any attempt to get those same regulators to save you from the monopolies is hopelessly misguided".

    And if we limit the scope of discourse to the US market, and the regulators which have sway there (since AFAIK there is no single regulatory body, or set thereof, which has sway across the entirety of all Internet-service markets), I can kind of see the point. I think it's still ignoring important relevant facts, in a way somewhat analogous to how rejecting entropy because life on Earth grows more complex ignores the energy input Earth receives from the Sun (i.e., ignoring the closed-system/open-system dichotomy), but to someone who doesn't accept those facts - as the person we're presumably dealing with clearly does not - it would be a reasonable position to take.

    In that view, your comment about "the regulators who successfully dismantle monopolies in countries where effective regulation is allowed" would be flying wide of the point; the very fact that regulators in non-US markets have reined in monopolies would imply that those regulators do not want the monopolies to exist, but he's complaining about the ones in US markets, which - by his logic - do want the monopolies to exist.

  • Feb 20th, 2018 @ 4:22am

    Re: Re: I started hating cryptocurrencies

    I believe that "claim to be against the thing you're spamming for" technique is a known method for making spam posts look plausible; it's not exactly common, but it's not at all unheard-of.

    Or, to be charitable, possibly the linked-to site could maybe be (the? a?) place where he(?) got into the cryptocurrency thing, and he(?) just didn't explain it properly. Seems less likely to me, but I suppose it's not impossible.

  • Feb 16th, 2018 @ 12:12pm

    Re: Key take-away is that courts often, usually, and I'd say in this area, over 97 percent of time, GET IT RIGHT.

    Hint: "kudos" is not a plural noun, it's a mass noun. There is no such thing as a "kudo", unless you're talking about a person named like some of the characters in Meitantei Conan.

    It's not even pronounced the same way. "Kudos" rhymes with "dose", not with "doze".

  • Feb 15th, 2018 @ 5:50pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: So, Site visitors are cows to be milked?

    FWIW, the JS from most of those domains isn't necessary for "the Techdirt experience" to function.

    I'm only allowing scripts from Akamai, Google APIs, and Techdirt itself, and I can use the full functionality of the comment system, as well as see the Insider Chat box. The Soundcloud embed (or I assume that's what it is) at the top of the page doesn't appear to work, but then I don't want it to; I'd be happier if it weren't even there.

    IIRC, even the Akamai permission isn't necessary; I'm pretty sure I've seen other Techdirt articles, just recently, where that wasn't listed in the source domains of present scripts.

    I can indeed see scripts from Twitter and from other Google domains, but they aren't being allowed to run, and the site still works fine.

  • Feb 13th, 2018 @ 8:59pm

    Re: Re: Will software be next?

    It is a sign of intelligence to avoid saying anything except when you have something to say.

  • Feb 13th, 2018 @ 8:52am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: So in 2013 HBO states of whatever, and this is my United States of Whatever, and this is my United States of Whatever

    Oh, I don't mind people prodding at him. It's just the continual repetition and expansion-of-the-exposure of the trolling Subject line that annoys me.

    As you say, though, tastes differ - and it's hardly like you're the only "offender" (if that word even applies) in this regard, so even if I convinced you to inconvenience yourself by changing the behavior, that wouldn't stop anyone else from perpetuating it.

  • Feb 13th, 2018 @ 7:16am

    Trump a King?

    So... he claims that black people evolved from (and therefore still are) animals, but that white people were created by God...

    ...and he apparently likes Trump, who is (as far as anyone can tell) white...

    ...but he calls Trump a King?

    Doesn't he realize that the King family is clearly black?

    I wonder if the MLK estate could find something to sue over in that...

  • Feb 13th, 2018 @ 5:56am

    Re: Trade Secrets = Bad?

    I'm not even clear on why trade secrets should be protected by law at all.

    With copyright, the public offers a temporary monopoly in order to encourage the public release of the material; in exchange for this, when the monopoly expires, the public gets the material in the public domain. (In theory.)

    With patents, the picture is much the same, except that - while the scope of what can be patented has stretched out of all recognition and reasonability - the terms have remained within mostly-reasonable limits.

    With trade secrets... what does the public get, in exchange for enforcing the keeping-secret of these things? The information never gets released, and the only way it benefits the public is by way of the fact that the public can buy the product or service from the company - which it could do anyway, even if the secret thing were not secret. As far as I can see, the companies benefit from having these things remain secret, and the public gets nothing out of the deal.

    If you don't want to register a copyright, or file for a patent, or any of the other myriad facets of public-disclosure-in-exchange-for-temporary-protection intellectual-property law which have been come up with over the decades, why should the public be restricted from doing whatever it wants with the information if it can get its hands on that information?

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