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  • Jul 31st, 2015 @ 1:16pm

    Class action?

    The Vizio terms of service are unconscionable. This alleged “agreement” is made under duress, given that their product is unmerchantable by design; according to a response (to my complaint) from Vizio’s own tech support representative, you must consent to their TOS or you can’t even use the intended functionality of the device; no reasonable consumer would buy a TV that could only be used by consenting to onerous and unfairly one-sided terms. Further, the written agreement expressly allows Vizio to modify the terms unilaterally without notification to the other party and does not provide for the ablity to rescind.

  • Jul 15th, 2015 @ 1:28pm

    Learn how to communicate in code, now

    These surveillance mongers would be laughable if their their liberty-destroying agenda wasn’t so dangerous. How long will they whisper this poison before the same twats that authored the Patriot and USA Freedom Acts eventually pass legislation that disallows Apple et al. from offering encryption?

  • Jul 1st, 2015 @ 3:42pm

    Is internet commentary their job now?

    Our taxes actually pay someone to post this crap?! Social media doesn't further the goal of transportation safety. Are we subsidizing propaganda or just pissing away funds that eventually require more government thugs to continue stealing every greater sums of money from citizens?

  • Jun 30th, 2015 @ 10:33am

    Re: Re: What about 2 years worth of lost interest/profits?

    He could easily be awarded treble damages for the willful collusion that took place, and that's what he should be seeking. I don't understand why there even needs to be a legal challenge in cases like these. Simply carrying money is not a crime. If the authorities can't demonstrate that the chain of custody for funds relates to criminal activity, they should not be allowed to seize them. The assumption here is guilty until proven innocent.

  • Jun 23rd, 2015 @ 6:05pm

    Re: Constitutionality

    Yes. Legal action is possible. Congresspeople that voted yes on Fast Track may have lost their immunity.

    https://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/42/1983

  • Jun 23rd, 2015 @ 9:01am

    Mischievous genie

    As long as this “court” is gauging Congress’ intent based on a question of obviousness, why not also gauge what the authors of the Constitution intended for the people? Surely it wasn’t mass surveillance. FISA’s evil genie allegory is apropos; its track record shows that the NSA is its recognized master, and it will use every iota of wiggle room to interpret their wishes as its command.

  • Jun 8th, 2015 @ 10:00am

    Anticipatory relevance and psychic powers

    The law makes sense for corporations and business records, but it's absurd to apply it to citizens. Prior to a legal action, a computer only contains data—not "evidence." Unless you have precognitive skills, anticipating what may or may not be relevant among the minutiae of that data is impossible.

    I agree that the guy shouldn't have lied, although it seems that he went to the cops and answered their questions of his own accord, so perhaps they were unintentional misstatements. The article indicates that he was prosecuted for clearing his cache not because he had any part in terrorism, but because of alleged "sympathies" for jihad, which sounds a lot like the government is either going after thought crimes or that it has some ESP of its own, considering that, by their own admission, there was no evidence of that.

  • Jun 5th, 2015 @ 1:36pm

    Pragmatism vs. optimism

    I think it’s bizarre to not hate on USA FREEDOM, but I guess some people are silver lining types and others aren’t. I haven't found much of substance in the changes, which further entrench bad practices and allow for six more months of total, illegal seizure, for "transition." Congress, having committed to a course of action, probably considers itself done with surveillance issues for a while, possibly until 2019. The sloppy writings of the legislature are less concerning than are secret courts with their ongoing mockery of representation. The appointment of advocates—made from within the star chamber—only apply to "novel" or "significant" changes, whatever that may be and whomever controls those definitions.

  • Jun 2nd, 2015 @ 5:07pm

    Re:

    The Act was passed to give the appearance of taking substantive action. Legislators can now claim they struck a fair compromise that balances liberty and security, which may placate some of their constituents.

  • Jun 2nd, 2015 @ 12:17pm

    "There's a perception..."

    NSA defenders are still trying to sell the angle that they are merely 'perceived' as intruding on civil rights, even after being reprimanded for the seizures by a court. There is no evidence that a burden-shifting of these actions to a third party will "presumably take care of that." Regardless of whether or not Snowden appropriated some documents, he fulfilled his oath by putting the interests of the people before his own freedom.

  • Jun 1st, 2015 @ 8:10am

    Re: Re:

    I don’t know, Mike. I’ve lost faith in their intention to respect the law. The NSA has a lot of power, operates in a veil of secrecy, and acts in extra-judicial ways with some regularity; surely they never reasonably believed that some piddling executive order and a clearly unconstitutional rubber stamp court gave them actual legal authority. They’ve also “pushed” so hard and so far that boundaries became practically nonexistent; e.g. Clapper brazenly lied under oath, and, by surveilling the legislative branch, the NSA threw our system of checks and balances right out of the window. We should all take anything our government says about surveillance activities with a well-deserved grain of salt.

  • May 28th, 2015 @ 1:46pm

    Re:

    When I read Cameron's statement, I cringed, and I don't even live in the UK. It sounds ominously dystopian. He might as well have said: "For too long, your government has tolerated you and your different ideals. Those times are over. You'd better get with the program and conform."

  • May 27th, 2015 @ 11:55am

    (untitled comment)

    "care fee" should be carefree.

  • May 27th, 2015 @ 11:51am

    Unfair use of fair use

    These works are derivative, rather than transformative, and it's a slap in the face to legitimate fair uses cases for someone to directly profit from another's photo without permission. What is fair about this use? Does it inform education? Is it parodic? No. It isn't. I would not be so care fee, were this done with my own photo. "Appropriation artist" = con artist.

  • May 21st, 2015 @ 5:58pm

    Re:

    This is a tu quoque logical fallacy, where you attack a perceived inconsistency in a position, rather than the merits of the actual argument. The "debate" over unlawful surveillance has gone on ad nauseam, and there is little to discuss further—healthily or otherwise; the underlying issue is already unambiguously decided by the Constitution, and a court recently expressed incredulity at the justifications.

  • May 8th, 2015 @ 5:01pm

    Re: Is Convenience That Big A Deal?

    This case is the modern day equivalent of The Anarchist Cookbook—an infamous guide for making all manner of weapons has been in print since the 70's; that genie wasn't regulated back into the bottle, and neither will this be.

  • May 7th, 2015 @ 10:31am

    Re: Judicial cowardice

    I agree. It really isn’t sufficient for a court to say that a plaintiff’s rights haven’t been trampled just because he can’’t cite precedent. Some things are, literally, unprecedented. It’s still the judge’s job to make a fair decision based on the facts and the spirit of the law.

  • May 1st, 2015 @ 11:27am

    Grand theft auto

    No statute, regulation, or policy “specifically prescribe[d]” or prohibited the course of action Patty alleges the DEA agents followed." ...

    "In any event, Patty fails to explain how these constitutional provisions specifically prescribed a different course of conduct or specifically proscribed what the officers did..."

    Taking someone's vehicle without their permission is grand theft, and there is a statute for that. The different course of conduct that is prescribed is that all government agents should be acting ethically and legally, from the get-go. If the DEA can commandeer your property at their "discretion," that flies in the face of the concepts of property ownership and of citizens even having rights.

  • Apr 28th, 2015 @ 6:41pm

    Re:

    You and a few others in this thread seem to be missing or glossing over critically important details. According to both the reporter and the witness, the lady was "half a football field away" from the scene (500+ feet), so she wasn't in the "middle" of anything, nor could she in any possible way endanger others or interfere with an investigation from such a distance. She didn't even begin to speak to the officers until they encroached on her space and attempted to obstruct filming. Saying that she was in the "line of fire" and should just move to the other side of the street is absurd; bullets don't travel along predefined paths and they certainly can cross streets. If there was a legitimate need to relocate that lady, the cops either would have done so or would've arrested her, rather than destroying her property. There really was very little chance of gunfire, considering that you can clearly see the suspects in custody with their hands on their heads, surrounded by cops. She is under no obligation to follow unlawful orders.

  • Apr 16th, 2015 @ 3:26pm

    class action?

    If part of their duty is to regulate trade and they willfully abandon that role, doesn't that mean they lose immunity? Maybe some congresspeople merit prosecuting under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 for forfeiting their constituent's rights.

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