Cybersecurity Or Governmental Control?

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The Internets is about freedom.  It’s the idea that any kid with a modem can connect with the world, it’s a world of ideas and a lot of other pointless things, but while the internets might make you stupid it is also about the free exchange of ideas a uncensored debate.  Yes there is too much porn and too many kids or in many cases adults giving too much information about themselves to the whole world but when you look past all the junk it’s about reality.  Is Twitter silly and mostly useless?  Yes it is, but when it all came down to it during the Iranian election crisis it made a difference, suddenly a site whose only known purpose was nothing more than people talking about the most banal and pointless aspects of their lives (“I just got home, burritos, nom, nom, nom…”), and it became one of the only sources of information coming out of Iran when all other sites where blocked.  That’s the duality of Teh Interets.

The problem with the interwebz is that it has a large flow of information, this is a problem because the people in power want to control the flow of information, they want to keep you in the dark, and only give you the information they want you to have.  That’s why places like China try to block as much of it as they can, and places like North Korea don’t have any access at all, unless you are a high ranking party member or are a high ranking spy.

I have already spoke out against the attempts to reinstate the Fairness Doctrine that was once used to muffle free speech and H.R. 1966 an attempt to criminalize it.  However now we have S.773:

“NET News has obtained a copy of the 55-page draft of S.773 (excerpt), which still appears to permit the president to seize temporary control of private-sector networks during a so-called cybersecurity emergency.

The new version would allow the president to “declare a cybersecurity emergency” relating to “non-governmental” computer networks and do what’s necessary to respond to the threat. Other sections of the proposal include a federal certification program for “cybersecurity professionals,” and a requirement that certain computer systems and networks in the private sector be managed by people who have been awarded that license…

Probably the most controversial language begins in Section 201, which permits the president to “direct the national response to the cyber threat” if necessary for “the national defense and security.” The White House is supposed to engage in “periodic mapping” of private networks deemed to be critical, and those companies “shall share” requested information with the federal government. (“Cyber” is defined as anything having to do with the Internet, telecommunications, computers, or computer networks.)

“The language has changed but it doesn’t contain any real additional limits,” EFF’s Tien says. “It simply switches the more direct and obvious language they had originally to the more ambiguous (version)…The designation of what is a critical infrastructure system or network as far as I can tell has no specific process. There’s no provision for any administrative process or review. That’s where the problems seem to start. And then you have the amorphous powers that go along with it.”

Translation: If your company is deemed “critical,” a new set of regulations kick in involving who you can hire, what information you must disclose, and when the government would exercise control over your computers or network.

The Internet Security Alliance’s Clinton adds that his group is “supportive of increased federal involvement to enhance cyber security, but we believe that the wrong approach, as embodied in this bill as introduced, will be counterproductive both from an national economic and national secuity perspective.”

Why would the President need to “size temporary control of private-sector networks”?  Control!  They want the ability to be able to control the flow of information.  Why does Hugo Chavez shut down radio and TV stations that don’t agree with him?  Because he wants to be able to control the flow of information.  Why does the US government want to be able to size control of the internets?  Because they want to ability to be able to stop voices of dissent, they want to be able to control what you read, what you hear, what you think.  FDR used the FCC to shut down radio station that didn’t agree with his New Deal policies, and latter the Fairness Doctrine was used to stamp out dissenting voices by both Republican and Democratic administrations (although the Dems used it a lot more).

Read the thing, it talks about “Critical Infrastructure” well what does the government consider “Critical Infrastructure”?  This bill is rather broad, and if we know anything about the Federal Government is that they love poorly worded or broad statements in Bill because they can try to use it latter to get away with anything and everything.  Think about the Commerce Clause in the Constitution.  The whole point of it was so that each state didn’t coin their own money or enact tariffs at the state borders, think about what they use if for now?  They use it to regulate businesses that don’t even do business across state lines.  When you give politicians an inch they don’t take a mile, they take several thousand miles. What I am saying is while this Bill might be used to help secure the private-sector financial networks it could also be used to shut down media sites or blogs in the even of an “emergency”.  Now the Bill does not specify what constitutes an emergency, and that is the problem, remember what happened in New Orleans after Katrina where the cops where coming into people houses and confiscating legally owned guns as an “emergency measure”?  This whole bill sound more like a Trojan Horse than a real Bill about legitimate security concerns due to the broad and ill-defined language.

You can call me a paranoid Right-wing reactionary but had Bush tried this you would have gone ape-shit, remember people only care when it’s their “side” that is getting screwed over rather than look at the fact that what they will do to some of us they will do to all of us.  A threat to one man’s liberty is a threat to all of our liberty.

Every year and every day we let the Government take more and more of our rights away.  If we don’t fight back they will make slaves of us all.  This is already an administration that cannot take dissent.  Although it was shut down they tried to get people to rat out their countrymen and keeps tabs on them.  What do you think they are going to do with this kind of power?  The less control the Government, any Government has over the internets the better.  Yes laws against the distribution of porn to minors and Child Pornography on the Internet are good things, but giving the government the power to control it and shut it down for “emergency reasons” is very, very bad.  Not only will they shut down your website, but this Bill will also give them control over your cell phone network.  North Korean does not allow most people to have cell phones or even land lines because they don’t want people communicating with the outside world.  What happens when our government want’s to stop us from communicating?  With this Bill they can, and trust me it’s only a matter of time before they do.

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Win One For The Swimmer

I love this headline:

“Win One for Teddy,’ Say Dems Pushing for Health Reform: Key Question Is Whether Kennedy’s Death Can Rally Fellow Democrats”

Yep use Ted Kennedy’s death to push your health care bill because Kennedy really cared about people’s health, unless of course you are a girl named Mary Jo and he just dumped you into a tidal channel on Chappaquiddick Island.  Too bad the Democrat didn’t rally around Mary Jo Kopechne and try to save her while she waited alive in Ted’s car hoping someone would come save her.  It’s really not as bad as it sounds,  after all Ted did call the police, the next day after talking to his lawyer and hours too late to save her life, but he did call…

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For people that don’t get the joke, it was a spoof from the National Lampoon magazine off of this advertisement.

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I’m not even going to bother talking about the Obamacare BS.  I just wanted to make fun of Kennedy, and before people start complaining about “how I shouldn’t speak ill of the dead”, shut up.  I don’t care, I speak ill of a lot of dead people.  Just wait to hear what I have to say when Kim Jong-il, Hanoi Jane or Castro end up in Hell.  If Kennedy didn’t want me to talk shit about him he shouldn’t have killed a girl and spent the rest of his life being an annoying drunken blob.

The Internet Makes You Write Stupid Things

Some people need real jobs, especially many people who write for a living.  Before you try to call me a hypocrite, I don’t write for a living, I don’t get paid for this and neither does anyone else, and I’m not trying to get paid for it either.

Anyway back to people who write for a living but shouldn’t.  I’ll give you a list:

1. Anyone who writes for anything (newspaper, websites, magazine) talking about celebrities, or if they write the celebrity columns in normal media outlets.

2.  Anyone who has any financial stake in the Daily Kos.

3.  People that write articles on fashion, dating or horoscopes.

4.  Everyone at the New York Times.

5.  And anyone who does those lists on how to be trendy. Like this person:

“12 Words You Can Never Say in the Office”
by Carolyn Duffy Marsan

‘If you’re old enough to understand the reference in this headline — George Carlin, anyone? — then you’re old enough to need a refresher course when it comes to talking about technology.

We’ve put together a list of outdated tech terms, phrases that you shouldn’t be using at work anymore because they will make you seem old. This is especially true if you’re looking for a new job. For example, on an interview, you should be talking about “cloud computing,” not “ASPs” even though they are basically the same thing.

This list is useful for 20-somethings, too. Now when the senior person in the office uses one of these terms, you’ll know what he’s talking about.”

Oh Carol please tell me how to be hip and tech savvy, without your great wisdom 13 year old kids might think I’m uncool, and my boss might know what I’m talking about!

I’m not going to go after everything on the list, just some of it.

#1. Intranet:

Carolyn:

“Today, every private network runs IP. So you can just use the term virtual private network or VPN to describe a private IP-based network.”

Me:

Yes I can say “Intranet” in the office because if I say “Intranet” in the office everyone knows what I’m talking about even the ones just out of high school.   Not only do all companies not use this VPN thingy but if you work for the Government not only do they us a “Intranet” but they have several version of it with many other names ending in “net”.

#3. Web Surfing:

Carolyn:

“When is the last time you heard someone talk about surfing the Web?

Me:

Twice today and both people saying it were under 20.
“You know the term is out of date when your kids don’t know what it means.”

Me:

If they go to public school they also don’t know what war the Battle of the Bulge happened in or how to read at their grade level.  Kids are ignorant, it’s normal.  I was talking to a kid the other day who likes Gangsta Rap and they didn’t know who NWA was.  Does that mean I can’t listen to NWA anymore because some kid doesn’t know squat about his own musical tastes?

Carolyn:

“To teens and tweens, the Internet and the World Wide Web are one and the same thing. So it’s better to use the term “browsing” the Web if you want to be understood.”

Me:

No it’s “Surfing The Web”, it always has been and it always will be if your kids are too stupid to learn basic English you have failed as a parent.  Further more not being a Tween (I hate this word) or Teen I understand as an adult that what the kids think is usually stupid and they must guided by the rest of the adult population to grow up.  If the kids think you are “uncool” you are doing something right.  If they think you are cool it means you are failing at life.  In fact I have never even heard a child use the term “browsing” when talking about the internets or anyone else for that matter.  It’s either only your own children or you are making things up.

#6. Personal Digital Assistant (PDA):

Carolyn:

“PDA was still in use in 1996, when the Palm Pilot was the hottest handheld in corporate America. Today, the preferred generic term for a handheld like a Blackberry or an iPhone is a “smartphone”.

Me:

Nope it’s still a PDA, and while I will admit some people do use the term “Smartphone”, PDA is still the most used term for the thing, plus anyone who has an iPhone always calls it an iPhone, I have never heard anyone calling it anything else until just now.  With the Blackberry I have heard it called other things but it’s only one of these three; Blackberry, PDA or Crackberry.  And back on the kids thing, who the hell gives their children a Blackberry or iPhone and what do they need it for?

#11. Long-Distance Call:

Carolyn:

“Thanks to flat-rate calling plans available from carriers for at least five years, nobody needs to distinguish between local and long-distance calls anymore. Similarly, you don’t need to distinguish between terrestrial and wireless calls because so many people use only wireless services. Like pay phones, long-distance calls — and their premium prices — are relics of a past without national and unlimited calling plans.”

Me:

You have apparently never had to deal with international calling have you?  Granted yes most long distance calls no longer exist however since international call are still different and many people still use the term “Long Distance” for these calls along with “international”, I don’t think it’s quite time to send the term to the wood shed.  But you did almost have a point there.

#12. World Wide Web:

Carolyn:

Nobody talks about the “World Wide Web” anymore, or the “Information Superhighway,” for that matter. It’s just the Internet. It’s a distinction that Steve Czaban, the popular Fox Sports Radio talk show host, likes to mock when he refers to the “Worldwide Interweb.” Nothing dates you more than pulling out one of those old-fashioned ways of referring to the Internet such as “infobahn” or “electronic highway.”

Me:

Yes, it’s teh Internets, or teh Interwebs,  but really who cares, should I?  Oh please tell me great teacher of teenage wisdom!

But really, how is this your job?

Hugo Chavez, Still An Annoying Asshole.

Ah the political posturing of tyrants is always a little funny, requiring you are so jaded by the last century, if not history in general that it’s funny how people can keep getting away with the same crap all the time.

“Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez said he is preparing to break off diplomatic relations with Colombia over the neighboring country’s plan to allow U.S. troops access to its military bases.

Ah the political posturing of tyrants is always a little funny, requiring you are so jaded by the last century, if not history in general that it’s funny how people can keep getting away with the same crap all the time.

“Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez said he is preparing to break off diplomatic relations with Colombia over the neighboring country’s plan to allow U.S. troops access to its military bases.

“It is going to happen,” Chavez said on Tuesday in a state broadcast. “We are going to prepare for this, because the Colombian bourgeoisie hates us. And now, it just isn’t possible to make up. No, it is impossible.

“The agreement of the seven bases is a declaration of war against the Bolivarian Revolution,” Chavez added, referring to his socialist political movement, which he named after 19th-century Venezuelan leader Simon Bolivar.

Relations between the two countries have been tense since Colombia entered into negotiations with the United States to allow its troops to operate from seven bases.”

We all know this is because Chavez needs the propaganda and this kind of thing to maintain power.  Kim Jong-il has been using the “inevitable invasion” of North Korean by America and their lap-dogs in the South for years to control his little Hermit Kingdom, and Castro has used America for years in order to maintain his power.  Dictators need an enemy, they need propaganda, they need the threat of war.

Chavez doesn’t like Columbia because they are allies with the US and Chavez needs his anti-American rants to help him distract the people from all the terrible crap he is doing to them.  It’s the same thing Iran has been doing since the revolution and the Soviet Union was doing for almost a century.  Chavez also wants to distract the world from the fact he has always been in bed with the FARC.   He sells weapons to and gives the FARC a safe haven and since Columbia is fighting his friends he has to fight the Columbian government.  He has also taken a lot of money from the FARC nd has a lot of support from them.  Mind you the FARC was a Marxist revolutionary organization that changed into a Marxist, Narco-Terrorist organization but who cares, it’s the Columbian government that is bad, and so is America for supporting them (well some of us do, many in the government do not).  The US troops are there to help Columbia stop it’s drug problem, Chavez knows this, but he also knows that he is friends with the biggest group of drug lords in Columbia, the FARC, so of course he wants to try to protect his friends.

Look I don’t like war, it’s a bad thing but if Chavez really wants to invade Columbia give me a gun and I’ll go down and help the Columbians.  I really don’t think Chavez would do this because he might be smart enough to know the difference between the stupid shit you say for political propaganda reason and actually following through with it.  Kim Jong-il is crazy and even he won’t try to invade the South, he’ll pull other kinds of crap when he knows he can get away with it but he won’t invade.  I’m going to assume Chavez is the same kind of asshole.  And Really if Chavez cuts ties with Columbia it’s not like they lost a friend, it’s just that Chavez has finally had the balls to admit the truth, he has always been working against them.

When In Doubt, Send In The Marines!

And just so you know as a Vet he either buys his own insurance or  gets the crappy government health care they give all Vets.  And if you are lucky soon it will be you getting the GOV Insurance, only now it will be even worse because they have so many more people to deal with and they can’t even handle what they have now.  Trust me as someone who knows very well how VA health care works it’s basically what you would call a last resort for most veterans.  I’m not saying the VA doesn’t try, to a point it does, it’s that the system is screwed up and the government doesn’t even bother to pretend to fix it. Why, because they can get away with it.

Just think “POST OFFICE”!

H/T Doctor Bulldog & Ronin

Is Making Fun Of Obama That Hard?

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From an article about political comedy from Time:

“For eight years they had enjoyed a comedic gift from the gods in George W. Bush”

You would think that if it was a comedic gift the comedians would have had more than one joke.  Yes it was only one joke it might sound a little different each time but the punch-line was always “Bush is stupid”.

Then the article goes on to talk about how hard it is to write jokes about Obama?  Really?  It’s that hard?  Come the fuck on people, it’s not hard, I do it all the time and it’s not even my job!  Granted the article does admit much of the reason many comedians are not cracking jokes about Obama is for partisan reasons, but if I’m not going to accept the BS from the media why would I accept it from comedy?

More fun from the article:

“I’m not hearing a ton of political stuff,” says Kevin Flynn, a New York–based stand-up who has a couple of Obama jokes in his repertoire but, like a lot of his colleagues, is still feeling his way along with the change in Administrations. But he doesn’t think there’s cause for alarm. “The first six months of Bill Clinton–and George Bush too–nothing much happened that could be made fun of. Everybody is waiting for Obama to do something or for the winds to change. It hasn’t happened yet.”

I understand what he is saying to a point but it’s been over six months and a lot has happened to make a lot of fun about.

Obama trying to sell his health care bill and brings up the Post Office?

Teleprompters and what happens to Obama the second he doesn’t have one?

Cash For Clunkers?

Obama riding a bicycle with a flat tire while wearing mom-jeans?

Joe Biden? Yes not Obama but everyone already knew he was crazy when Obama picked the guy.

No one in the government reading the bills they vote on, and Obama signing bills neither he or anyone else has read?

Obama going to Europe to apologize for America, a place that would be either owned by the Soviets or the Nazis if it wasn’t for America?

Obama talking about Gates getting arrested, admitting he didn’t know any of the details about it, then launching off into condemning the police?

The thing Obama claimed was a dog?

His pot and cocaine use?

The fact his Mother, Father and half his friends are/were communists?

The Obama fan-club?

His longwinded speeches where he says nothing?

His inability to handle dissent?

Obama smacking his head off Marine One, then walking into a glass door?

The fact that half of the people he picked for his Cabinet didn’t pay their taxes, after his VP pick said paying taxes was a patriotic duty?

The fact he spent his entire time in government running for the next higher office and never accomplished anything and the fact his own wife admitted it?

All the transparency he always talked about?

Obama-Joker?  Wait never mind that one is “racist”…

Wait, screw that, the fact that every time someone disagrees with Obama they are a racist, even if it’s supposed to be a “Post-racial America” and we are talking about policy issues that have nothing to do with race and have always been around?

Hell you can make a joke about comedians not being able to make a joke about Obama.

It’s so easy a caveman could do it, well unless the Caveman’s Union beats him up to make sure he doesn’t talk…

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Really… Nothing?

I hate it here…

Some Suggestions For Fixing The Mess In Washington.

UPDATE: I have updated this with a new post that can be found here.  I did not think this was enough and some of the ideas presented here I later  felt fell short of what was really needed so I changed added and adjusted several things.  Feel free to read this or ignore it and go strait to the new one.

1.  Term Limits; the reason so many of the politicians today don’t have to worry about any consequences for their actions is because many cannot be thrown out of office due to the support of their districts who they essentially pay off and bribe, using tax dollars from the whole country.  We all complain about pork and if a congressman knows that he only has a limited time on office he has less incentive to try to bribe the electorate.  The presidency has term limits why not Congress?  I say that three terms on the House and two terms in the Senate.  If a House member is really a voice for the people, the state would elect him to the Senate, if he doesn’t have support outside his own little district than he won’t get elected, this way he can’t spend all his time trying to us taxpayers money to buy votes.  Term limits should also be mandatory for all state offices as well.

2.  The policy of giving members of Congress in both the Federal government and the states retirement packages for life after only serving one term needs to end.  No matter how long a Congressmen or President has served they should not be rewarded for life for the simple ability to dupe people into getting the majority of the vote.  The only retirement package most politicians deserve is a life sentence in prison and they certainly don’t deserve to leach off of the taxpayers for life.

3.  Every Law that is passed must be able to show how it is Constitutional before it can be enacted, if the Bill and it’s sponsors cannot show how this law would be Constitutional it cannot be made into law.  Any member of the government violating or attempting to violate any constitutional rights can be impeached for this offense, the penalty for violating the constitution is a lifetime ban from any governmental post, up to an including working the counter at the post office, with the worst violations punishable by imprisonment or death.  Further more, all bills must be read in their entirety by every member of Congress as well as the President before they may vote on it or in the case of the President either sign it into law or veto it.  Not only must every bill be read by every politician it must also be posted in the public domain for no less than three weeks prior to voting on it in order for the Citizens of this country to be given ample time to read and understand it, the only exception to this is anything that one would need a security clearance to read (almost nothing).

4.  No law can be made by any unelected official.  Only elected members of Congress have the right under the constitution to make laws, any law or regulations not coming from Congress are unconstitutional and are illegal.  Any Regulatory agency must have the approval of Congress, who must be able to prove it’s constitutionality, before for any regulation can take effect.

5.  The government may not be allowed to give money to any business or organization, unless it is a payment for goods or services rendered, such as buying military hardware, or equipment necessary for work, such as office computers or fax machines.   No money may be spent on things like grants, or subsidies.

6.  Voter registration must be done at the courthouse, no private entity may do this for the government.  If people are too stupid to figure out how to register to vote, they probably don’t need to vote.  When voting the voter must be able to prove he is who he says he is, if someone can’t figure out how to get a photo ID they probably don’t need to be voting, plus it’s not like you can’t scrounge up the $10 for an ID by panhandling for a day or so if you really want to vote that badly.  This will help keep outside organizations with hidden political agendas from attempts at fraud.

7.  The Federal Government needs to get out of any business that is not specifically in the constitution.  The 9th and 10th amendments are not negotiable, nor is any other.  If your State does not provide a service you want and it is not within the federal Governments Constitutional duties move to a state that does do it, or lobby you state representative like you are supposed to do.  If something is unconstitutional on both levels then lobby to change the Constitution, it is legal to do, although most people might not want to do it, that’s life.  Remember this, if you can ignore one part of the constitution to get what you want that means the whole thing means nothing, even the parts you like.

8.  Party affiliation must be removed from the ballot.  Too many people simply vote for a party without even bothering to know anything about the candidate, by removing the party affiliation  it would force people to at least learn a little bit about the different candidates before they vote.  If they still want to vote only on party lines that is fine but they have to do the research to figure it out in the first place.

9.  Tax law has to be standardized, when companies or special interests can get the government to give them tax breaks in order to get a leg up on their competition it creates a climate where people with money have incentives to bribe politicians.  Subsidies also need to be done away with for the same reason.  It is more economical to use sugar than corn syrup as a sweetener, however do to Government subsidies it makes corn syrup appear cheaper when purchasing, but that is only  a trick since the real cost is passed on to consumers in the form of higher taxes.  Not only does this give an unfair advantage to the corn syrup industry but it ends up costing the taxpayers millions of dollars every year.

10.  The Speaker of the house must not be chosen by a political party, and should be elected to that position through a vote by the people.  Elections must be held one month prior to the departure of the former Speaker or after a three year interval, no person being allowed to have that position for longer than three years.  Any member of the House who wishes to become Speaker must submit their name for the position one month prior to the election, and after the initial election a secondary runoff election for the top five candidates two weeks prior to the changeover.  In the event of a tie or if the top two candidates are within a 5% margin another election will be held two weeks later with only those two on the ballot.

11. Any Elected Official convicted of a crime the penalty for the crime should be doubled, so if something would usually be a a maximum three year jail sentence and a $10,000 fine they would automatically get six years in prison a $20,000 fine and not ever be eligible for parole or any form of early release program. In the case of any crime over a misdemeanor they should be stripped of their right to vote permanently, be banned from ever serving in any branch of the government or ever holding any kind of State or Federal job and lose any entitlement to any State of Federal aid they may be otherwise entitle too permanently.  Any crime committed by an Elected Official that would normally carry a maximum fifteen year jail sentence automatically requires capital punishment rather than a doubling of the jail sentence, the doubling of fines however is still valid and must be paid by the Official prior to his death or by his estate afterwards, so that if the maximum penalty for the Officials crime is normally fifteen years in prison and a $250,000 dollar fine the Official would be required to pay $500,000 and receive the Death Penalty.

12.  Any bill that proposes a raise in the salaries or benefits of any elected official must be voted on by the people and not the elected officials themselves.  The only time it is permissable for elected officials to raise their own salaries without a popular vote shall be that every ten years the House and Senate  may vote on raising salaries but only enough that is covers the average inflation over that previous ten year period rounded down, so that if the average rate of inflation was 3.6% they can vote on raising their salaries by 3%,  If it was 1.9% they can raise their salaries by 1%.

13.  Any governmental expenditures must be posted in the public domain except in the case of certain Defense expenditures where it would give away classified information.  All expenditures on classified projects are posted with only the total monetary amount of all expenditures under the title of “Miscellaneous Defense Spending”