Richard M’s Techdirt Profile


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  • Jul 19th, 2019 @ 8:38am

    Of course the US is hypocritical

    The hypocrisy of the US is nothing new. Look at all the "pearl clutching" going on about Russia interfering with our elections while the US has a long history of not only interfering with them but using force to overturn the results it does not like.

    Yes of course we do not want other countries interfering with our elections and should do everything we can to keep that from happening.

    However we have zero moral high ground to stand on when it comes to interference as the US Govt does it on a regular basis. Securing our elections is a good thing but all the hyperventilating about "How could Russia do such a thing" just makes the US look hypocritical and stupid.

  • Jun 10th, 2019 @ 8:28pm

    One step forward two steps back

    A good decision...

    I wish I could get more excited about the good ones but it seems for every good court decision I read about there are multiple bad ones.

    It is like a good percentage of the judges and the population for that matter have lost their minds and are doing all they can to destroy the Constitution.

    Between the growing anti-democracy and anti-science crowds we are swirling down the drain to someplace bad.

  • May 29th, 2019 @ 11:02am

    Re: And some are more equal than others...

    It is not so much that Journalists get more rights than the rest of us as much as the act of journalism gets more protections. Act like a journalist and you are a journalist.

    Now that does not stop (mostly on the local level) from trying to define who is and who is not a journalist but as far as I am aware they all end up failing.

  • May 22nd, 2019 @ 8:07pm

    No Shopping Cart??

    I went to the site and was planning on buying a few games but there is no shopping cart function.

    You have to check out separately with each game purchase. Seriously?? Did we loop back to 1995 without me noticing?

  • Feb 28th, 2019 @ 8:18am

    Re: Still waiting for the shoe..

    An earlier article said that the women's mom called the cops on her for using drugs in the house. Yes a 58 year old women had the cops called on her by her mom. ated-drugs-cop-had-stashed-his-car.shtml

    I am guessing the cops figured it would be an easy bust and ramped it up to dealing to give them an excuse to for the no-knock warrant and go in guns a blazing.

    Because where is the fun in just getting a regular possession bust when you can get a chance to legally kill someone.

  • Feb 20th, 2019 @ 6:24am

    Thanks Mom...

    "A 911 call from the mother of now-deceased suspect Rhogena Nicholas put 7815 Harding Street on police radar. Sources close to the investigation say her mother called reporting the 58-year-old was doing drugs inside her own home."

    So the mom of a 58 year old adult women called the cops on her own daughter? WTF is up with that??

    What did she think was going to happen? Rainbows and unicorns?

    Cops are basically the largest most successful criminal organization in the country and calling them on anyone especially family members very rarely ends well.

    You know she has to be feeling very bad right now since she basically got her daughter killed but I honestly am finding it hard to feel much sympathy for her.

  • Jan 18th, 2019 @ 4:21am

    The question lawmakers never seem to ask.

    Does my new law fix the problem I say I am trying to fix?

    This never seems to come up for some reason. All they care about is that they are doing Something/Anything so that it looks like they are in charge and know what they are doing.

    Most of the time doing nothing is the best choice.

    However for politicians that is not really an option because it is hard to earn bribes if you are not doing anything.

    I look at the dumpster fire that the is the US political scene and think this is about as bad as it could get. Then I look to the EU and other countries and start thinking that maybe there is a contest I do not know about where the politicians of the world are trying to see who can screw up their country the worst.

  • Jan 9th, 2019 @ 5:12am

    US cops as well

    There are plenty of examples of cops here in the US arresting people for making them look bad as well. Usually the DA takes drops the charges fairly quickly but even so the people arrested have to spend some time in jail and everything that goes with it. And then we have those times when the DA doubles down with the cops and it takes a long court case to tell everyone what we already knew. Which is that the whole arrest was unconstitutional and usually the tax payers have to write a check to cover the stupidity.

  • Jan 8th, 2019 @ 7:17am

    If Musk...

    If Musk and SpaceX manage to make Starlink work and work well he can make as many stupid tweets as he wants and I will not care...

    In fact if he manages to pull this off he could monumentally fail at everything for the rest of his life and he will still be in the plus column.

  • Nov 28th, 2018 @ 2:47pm

    Solving problems is not the goal...

    " But simple declarations and pronouncements don't really do anything useful in "solving" those issues."

    Very little of anything politicians do has anything to do with solving problems.

    They all have two goals.
    1. More power for themselves and their buddies.
    2. More money for themselves and their buddies.

    Everything they do is based on doing these two things. They do not care about actually solving problems but they do care about looking like they are solving problems to whatever group will help them in their quest for more power and money.

    Despite all the political rhetoric politicians of any party do not really care about us. Some of them are more open about it than others but none of them really care about anything other than their own power.

  • Nov 28th, 2018 @ 5:38am

    Playing the slots with taxpayer money.

    " What we see on the surface in the handful of cases that reach this level of review is only a tiny percentage of the legally-unreasonable stops made daily by law enforcement. And it's unlikely to change until more courts hand down decisions like this."

    Even if the majority of cases are thrown out the cops are unlikely to change their behavior. Failure does not cost them anything so why would they change. They are playing slot machines with taxpayer money and even if they only win once in awhile why would they stop?

    If the courts start making rulings like this common the prosecutors might drop cases quicker when they get push back as it makes them look bad when they have lost a lot of cases come election time. Even for them the downsides are not all that great because they will be able to get most people to plead out to some charge just to get out of the system and on with their lives.

  • Nov 26th, 2018 @ 12:13pm


    They use a cellular connection or at least mine does not connect to my network as I have it locked down pretty hard.

    You can buy ones that do not phone home but keep track of your usage on an SD card. Then when you go back to the doctor you give them the card so they can check and see if any adjustments are needed.

    The thing is your insurance company probably gets the info anyway even if your machine does not phone home as they have access to your medical records.

  • Nov 26th, 2018 @ 12:04pm

    Trying to set another precedent

    The Govt and the FBI is trying to set another precedent where the keep getting to vacuum up more info without any real cause. Asking for all that info is just them not bothering to narrow it down, they are trying to normalize them being able to get all that info.

    My big question in these cases is WTF is up with the judges signing off on these stupid requests? Their job is to keep the Govt from stepping over the line but that does not seem to be what is going on except in very few isolated cases.

  • Nov 26th, 2018 @ 8:34am

    There are options

    You can buy them online fairly easily if you want to pay out of pocket. I just replaced one that burnt up with the rest of my house. Fire insurance covered it so I just went online and purchased one. I paid for the first one in cash as well but it was a few years ago and if I remember correctly it was not quite as easy to just buy one back then.

    If you want to be able to track your stats online (which is actually fairly handy) but without everyone and their brother having the info you can just create an account with a false name which is what I did.

    It does take more time and money if you want to keep your private info private. If you do not think about what you are doing, are signing things without reading them then, and not putting forth any effort you really should not be bitching when your privacy is lost.

  • Nov 20th, 2018 @ 8:34am

    Re: Re: We have already been to that dance.

    It is not about any particular executive order or policy. It is about the fact that The Democrats were just fine with Obama bypassing Congress when Obama was doing it but when a Republican does it then all of a sudden it is a huge problem. The Republicans are the exact same way, when it is there guy it is all good but when it was Obama they went nuts.

    It is not the policies that matter in the long run it is the process. Weaken the process for short term political gain is very bad for the long term stability of the country. Every time you weaken the checks and balances and give the Executive Branch more power you make it that much easier for others to do the same. In the long run that makes it easier for the country to slide from democracy to dictatorship.

    Personally I was not a huge Obama fan for a couple of reasons but a third Obama term would have been much better for the country than Trump by any measure. I do not think we are even close to seeing all the damage that Trump is going to do to this country especially if he gets reelected in 2020.

    I have to main problems with Obama.

    1. He was elected as the anti-war President but doubled down on every bad Bush policy and ended up killing more people and destabilizing more countries than Bush managed to do. He could and should have pulled us from Afghanistan, the capture and death of Osama Bin Laden would have been a perfect time to do so though personally I think he should have started the day after he took office.

    Countries have been invading Afghanistan for 100's of years and it always ends badly. When we finally do leave the country it will be the same as it was before we went there. Other than Nuking the whole country and turning it into a glass parking lot (something we should obviously not do) there is nothing we can do to change the country. It is just a black hole sucking down American lives and money for no good reason, the American people derive zero benefit from being there. I will stop here as could rant about this for a really long time.

    2. He did little or nothing to change how the war on drugs is causing the mass incarceration of African-Americans. While the DOJ did some work on attacking police violence against minorities he could have done much more. An admitted pot smoker in college he did not even go to the effort to remove Marijuana from the schedule 1 which everyone knows is not where it belongs.

  • Nov 19th, 2018 @ 12:22pm

    We have already been to that dance.

    " (and, frankly, the Trump supporters here should learn to think beyond their obsession with defending "dear leader" in everything he does, because the same rules will apply when other Presidents are in charge, and they may not always like it in the other direction)"

    We have already had this dance a few times and just in recent history.

    Bush bypasses Congress the Republicans are fine with it and the Democrats lose their minds.

    Obama "rules with his pen" and the Democrats rejoice about how great a job he is doing and the Republicans lose their minds.

    Trump does whatever the hell he wants and pretty much tries to be a dictator and Republicans are happy happy and the Democrats are horrified.

    Both parties are to blame for the strengthening of the Executive branch and a weakening of the checks that are supposed to keep it reined in. Without that weakening Trump would not have the power to do as much damage as he is doing or will do in the future.

    Also there is certain amount of irony in regards to the press and how they are treated by Trump. One of the main reasons that Trump was able to win the Republican nomination was all the free publicity they gave him during the primary campaigns (especially early on). All that free attention sucked the air from the other candidates.

    They wanted him to win because of course there was no way that such a buffoon would be able to beat Clinton.


  • Nov 8th, 2018 @ 5:34am

    Not Their Money...

    The administration is not paying this out of pocket, they will make up the lawsuit spending by raising student fees and/or getting more money from the state.

    Just like all the excessive force lawsuits. The cops do not care because it is not personally costing them anything.

    Think about your normal sociopathic 2 year old. If every time he/she did something bad and you punished someone else they would never learn good behavior. Think of the admin and cops as 2 year old toddlers and you are pretty close to the truth.

    There is no personal cost so why change?

  • Nov 2nd, 2018 @ 6:10am

    Re: It's as if the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence

    Democracies always devolve into some type of Dictatorship/Police State of some type. The fact that the US is organized as a republic has slowed the process but has not stopped it completely.

    The "Founding Fathers" were not a monolithic block that agreed on everything so part of the problem with the constitution like everything else political is that it was a series of compromises. That fact that they did as good a job as they did is actually pretty amazing when you compare it to all the politically compromised documents that have been created since then.

    However it was and is not perfect protection which is why we are now seeing a accelerating fall into a police state.

  • Nov 2nd, 2018 @ 5:45am

    Most laws have the same problem

    While the consequences of these particular two laws are going to be particularly bad and widespread a high percentage (I personally would say most) laws do not pass the "Does it solve the problem is says it solves?" test.

    You cover a lot of the tech laws that fail the test here and maybe if you were feeling extremely generous you could excuse politicians for not being tech savvy. However they do the same thing with problems that have been around decades or even longer.

    For the most part politicians do not care about whether or not a law actually fixes a problem. All they care about is if it sounds good and appears to fix the problem to uneducated voters so they can increase their personal power and wealth.

    That is not going to change until people start voting better and I am not going to hold my breath for that one.

  • Oct 18th, 2018 @ 1:47pm

    Cause and Effect Mix Up

    The fact that staffing has decreased is not the problem.

    The root problem is that a high percentage of politicians feel they have no need for technical or scientific help. It is not like they are shy about spending money, if they thought it was needed there would be more staffing.

    Staffing is down because politicians do not feel that non-partisan facts are important. All that matters is personal (and party) power, worrying about all that science stuff is just a waste of time to them.

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