I grew up in the land of freedom, and grew up hating overzealous and pointless "security" associated with the iron curtain.
We have freedom of speech, which inherently means freedom of thought. At one point we were the bastion of freedom and hope, and a leader in this regard. Nobody should fear harassment because they happened to speak at DEFCON anymore than one should fear harassment because they spoke at Jesus camp, or the science fair for that matter.
We SHOULD be encouraging people to come here and talk about things that might get them in trouble in their home countries. We SHOULD take a position of leadership and protect the basic inalienable rights of all people regardless of their citizenship, alliances, or thoughts.
I am absolutely appalled at the state that our government has arrived at. I am stunned that after such a strong revocation of the previous leadership that Obama's generation sought to increase security theater, decrease freedom, and decrease the rights afforded to our own citizens and our visitors.
The enemy of our freedom isn't thousands of miles away in some terrorist training camp. It's the people we freely elect who have seemingly no forethought and no historical understanding of our fundamental values.
A leader isn't someone who looks to cover his ass at every opportunity. A leader is someone who stands up, tells people there is something wrong, and pushes us back to the values that we were raised to be proud of. You don't have to be president to be a leader. Every police officer, every border agent, every engineer, janitor, and unemployed citizen can stand up at some point and see enough is enough. People need to stop arguing about politics and stop worrying about the boogey man. People need to start caring about freedom and they need to stop the culture of fear.
Sorry... This whole discussion hit a sore spot for me. I have always been a proud american and this kind of behavior just flies in the face of the values I was raised to embrace.
The way I see it, if the shit I have to go through is that bad, the stuff they put non-Americans through is probably 10 times worse, and I'm embarrassed and pissed off that "my" country treats people that way. In no way do our boarder guards represent my beliefs, values, or integrity.
Instead of being 1st in the world, the USA ranks 23rd in the world for freedom , and 11th for economic freedom .
It's only likely to get worse.
Even sadder is that there are countries where people have a average life expectancy up to 5% longer than the USA.
For example, you can't publish news in Sweden/Finland/Germany that can be interpreted as anti-feminist or has an anti-refugees sentiment.
This soft pressure is hard to quantify because as a journalist you would lose your job and be accused of various things if you attempted to publish something like that.
There are books for sale like the ones from Thilo: Sarrazin https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thilo_Sarrazin
Which are full of anti immigration speech and whatever...
This is a lie.
Most people actually believe they live in democracies while there are no democracies on the planet right now though a couple countries are not so far from it.
100% freedom is a pipe dream, but they are as close as mankind can get these days and sustain it (for 800 years). Looking as an expat on their system, I am not sure about 1 thing I would like them to change, honestly.
US reality is megaparsecs behind in most regards.
Yes, the same Hong Kong that is not a democracy, wherein the CCP can and will come and get you anytime they please, wherein if you speak out against the government, you can go to jail, wherein every action of every citizen is monitored by the CPP.
I find this to be somewhat problematic.
Apparently they forgot to include 'political freedom' - which is a rather odd thing to overlook :)
They also place nations such as UAE far ahead of the US in terms of 'economic freedom' - this, a 'nation' wherein the various 'mini monarchs' have absolute authority, can pluck your finances, do as they please with you - for whatever reason they want, at any time, and are completely above the law. Of course total censorship of information, and absolute power by the police to intervene in your personal affairs have something to do with 'economic freedom'.
The Cato institute does some good (but opinionated work), but find this is irresponsible.
Anyway, I am sure the internet access here in HK is also monitored, but my guess its about the same as the US (so everything).
1. A female friend of mine was living in NYC. She had patents for some tech that she invented and was living in the US while trying to sell the patents or potentially build a business with them. Went to Toronto to see a friend, on return the immigration agent asked her what she did in the US - she explained she worked in tech and the immigration official said she didnt look like an IT person and cancelled her visa. She tried to get him to look up her patents but he refused. She had to leave the country and go reapply for her visa or sort it out back in Australia.
2. Margaret Jackson - former chairman of QANTAS was searched by TSA and they found airplane schematics, when asked why she had the schematics she said she was the chairman of QANTAS, the TSA responded, but you're a woman!
With most law enforcement, you are purged by your looks before you ever get to say a thing.
My own things against me: I'm female. I'm assumed to be smuggling drugs, partially because I travel light and partially because I have blue hair.
It seems stupid, I mean potential drug smugglers must know about this and adapt their looks. In the end, it's really just security theater.
I would prefer to have long hairs again and just be able to dress whatever way I want but as someone who travels a lot, I ended up having to conform...
"I ended up having to conform..."
I do understand. I conformed a lot in my 20's, mostly for job reasons. Found a job where it didn't matter - at a pharmacy, no less - and then wound up moving to Norway. Along the way, I decided I'd rather just be myself with the hairs and all, even if that means I get searched. I occasionally miss being able to blend into a crowd, but that's part of the payout for this, I guess.
Why didn't Obama do anything about it?
You think Trump is going to do something about it?
Maybe it was none of their responsibilities. sarcasm
Edit: added a sarcasm note
Pretty sure border security does fall under the executive branch.
Obama, for all his good social policies, had a much harder stance on foreign policy than I think was needed. I don't believe the failing TSA is the reason we don't have many transit-related terrorist attacks in the USA.
Not to mention, a large majority of the US population is xenophobic and/or racist. Giving the appearance of relaxing border security (even though it's been shown to be completely ineffective as-is), would be a poor political move.
Considering one of Trump's campaign promises was to build a wall between the US and Mexico - I doubt he's going to make things better.
What were even his good social policies. I tried to remember a few and couldn't. ACA for healthcare perhaps? Can't think of others.
Specifically the Black community voted for him and looking back I can't see if their lives improved a lot during his tenure.
> Considering one of Trump's campaign promises was to build a wall between the US and Mexico - I doubt he's going to make things better.
Yap doesn't seem hopeful. I think with Obama many thought he might be pro-privacy. I did somehow. I was wrong. Trump isn't and I don't know if we'll ever see someone campaigning and winning with that as a major part of their platform.
Scroll down to "The Work Ahead."
Obama could only enact laws that congress passed, and they pretty much only did that his first two years until Congress became a logjam and stopped doing anything. So Obama was left with the only tools he had, which were to enforce those laws he wanted to, and not the one he did not. And he did a lot of that, as pointed out.
Edit: His Justice Department also sued states over voter suppression and investigated racist police departments.
I understand some broad facets of the law and I don't believe it was a disaster, and furthermore I suspect you don't understand it either - by what basis are you calling it a 'disaster'?
Prove it. I'm well-travelled (within and outside the US) and I disagree entirely. Stop spewing libel about the American pubic.
But anecdotes are not proof. Here's hard data on racism in the U.S.:
- Stop and Frisk laws disproportionately target people of color, not to mention it's unconstitutional ( http://www.forbes.com/sites/jasonoberholtzer/2012/07/17/stop... )
- Punishment for crack-cocaine (mainly black users) was 10x worse than powder cocaine (mainly rich, white users), even though it's the same drug.
- North Carolina basically admitted to creating laws to stop black voters from voting ( http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2016/07/north-ca... )
I can go on and on. No matter how "well-traveled" you think you are, perhaps you weren't hanging out with the people who are being oppressed. They are speaking out pretty much constantly now, if you choose to listen.
Now I'm in the "Oh shit, a very large number of people here are racist, including pretty much everyone in my own family." All it took was paying attention over the years.
We've got a long way to go.
Which is why I don't use Facebook and don't have many friends. Most Americans are huge racists and bigots.
I put myself in social situations as much as possible with people of other races and deal with the vague uncomfortableness.
I probably still am racist - but at least I am pushing myself.
I'm glad that you found a strategy that worked for you, but that doesn't mean that other people are racist.
No white person is wholly racist or wholly not racist, it's all shades of gray, the most important part is that we understand why it's important to combat racism and do so actively in ourselves and when it happens in public. The only solution to racism is active anti-racism and the destruction of "white" as a category afforded special privileges by our culture and institutions.
It's incredibly easy to not be racist if you're not racist. I've spent zero effort to continue not being racist this year (same as last year).
I'd say that it's weird that you're singling out white people in the US (which is also amusing, because opposed to what other country?) as racist, but you've already self-reported as a racist. It appears that you're working on this and I wish you the best of luck.
Also, anyone can be racist, not just white people.
This is just one of those things where if you think you have it licked, you probably don't. It's less about understanding how to reach the end goal than it is understanding the process we need to get there. I realize you probably think you're not racist, but there is a high probability you have at the very least some implicit bias against non-white people if you are white and were brought up in a largely white community.
I'd like to think I'm not racist, but unfortunately going around to people yelling "but I'm not racist" doesn't really do a lot to solve the very real and persisting problem of racism even if it were entirely true in the first place. Curiously the racists I know are also the most likely to loudly and frequently proclaim that they aren't racist, often just before they say something racist. Even if you are a perfect angel yourself I think in most if not all moral frameworks you still have a shared responsibility of fighting against racism if you are white.
>I'd say that it's weird that you're singling out white people in the US (which is also amusing, because opposed to what other country?) as racist, but you've already self-reported as a racist.
I'm not sure what your point is here, I think Americans are a lot less racist than most people in Europe but we still have a lot of work to do.
>Also, anyone can be racist, not just white people.
Yes, that is very true. I apologize for forgetting about internalized oppression. Internalized racism is an extremely difficult problem and speaks to how deeply white supremacy pervades much of Western culture and governance. Again, the solution is recognizing that it exists and taking steps to change that while doing what we can to protect the people it affects.
No, sorry, I reject your ideology and manipulations. Repeating it in a different way, slightly more generally isn't any more convincing.
> Even if you are a perfect angel yourself I think in most if not all moral frameworks you still have a shared responsibility of fighting against racism if you are white.
I don't want to join your club and I do not want to give you legal privilege or power. If you want to improve the quality of life for people, go tutor kids or donate your time or something.
> I'm not sure what your point is here, I think Americans are a lot less racist than most people in Europe but we still have a lot of work to do.
Then why frame it that way? If you go looking for racism everywhere, you're going to find it. It's like a Baader-Meinhof phenomenon for people that really need to be twitter-followed for not having crappy/silly judgments about physical characteristics of people.
> Yes, that is very true. I apologize for forgetting about internalized oppression. Internalized racism is an extremely difficult problem and speaks to how deeply white supremacy pervades much of Western culture and governance.
Wait, what? Non-white people can be racist against white people. Are you trying to troll?
There's a lot of data on implicit bias, but you're right, it's still not 100% of white people, even if it is a vast majority.
>I don't want to join your club and I do not want to give you legal privilege or power. If you want to improve the quality of life for people, go tutor kids or donate your time or something.
How about all of the above? All of these things are important. I teach kids robotics and programming, I donate my time to arts programs for people with developmental and intellectual disabilities, and I also engage in anti-racist action and combat racism and misogyny in my daily life when I'm able to. I'm not really asking for legal privilege or power from you, not sure where that came from.
>If you go looking for racism everywhere, you're going to find it. It's like a Baader-Meinhof phenomenon for people that really need to be twitter-followed for not having crappy/silly judgments about physical characteristics of people.
Or it could be because there's just racism everywhere? I don't see how the frequency illusion is relevant, once you understand what racism is and the forms it takes you start seeing it more and more. The same is true for learning about basically anything. Think about how you used software and got frustrated with software before you knew how to write software, for example. There was a moment in particular when my perception flipped from "how hard could this problem possibly be" to "I'm amazed that this even works as well as it does."
Again, I don't give two shits if you follow me on Twitter, I actually don't even use Twitter except for reading others' feeds. I myself am going to fuck off after this post because this seems like a lost cause, and I really need to learn to stop engaging with people like you.
>Wait, what? Non-white people can be racist against white people. Are you trying to troll?
I'll admit that was a little cruel. However I think it bears repeating that while non-white people can be racist against white people, I only ever see this being used as a reason for why I shouldn't be confronting anti-black racism and racism against people of color more generally. The most prominent forms of racism against "white" people from people of color that I can think of is something like the Nation of Islam's vicious anti-semitism, which rest assured I oppose completely.
More broadly while racism against white people is theoretically possible, structural and institutional racism against white people are basically nonexistent, at least in the US. (and a lot of the West, I avoid absolutes where I'm not sure of things)
This conversation and many that I've had before are depressing, because for me at least they constitute a denial of solid sociology and anthropology on the level of conservative climate denial. Likewise as the question should not be whether global warming is actually occurring but what to do about it, I think the question with white supremacy should not be whether or not exists but what we should do about it. Like global warming, it's well-documented and blatant enough that I'm flabbergasted when people ask me to prove it.
I realize at this point that I'm definitely not reaching you and that you probably don't want to be reached. I'm sorry I tried, it seems like it was a waste of time.
> I donate my time to arts programs for people with developmental and intellectual disabilities, and I also engage in anti-racist action and combat racism and misogyny in my daily life when I'm able to. I'm not really asking for legal privilege or power from you, not sure where that came from...Or it could be because there's just racism everywhere?
You're playing identity politics and inventing racism and misogyny in order to have something to "combat." If you're just looking to be offended for the sake of community, you're free to do so, but don't confuse this with social progress.
> racism against white people is theoretically possible...This conversation and many that I've had before are depressing, because for me at least they constitute a denial of solid sociology and anthropology on the level of conservative climate denial...I think the question with white supremacy should not be whether or not exists...Like global warming, it's well-documented and blatant enough that I'm flabbergasted when people ask me to prove it.
You're trying to weasel out of this conversation by blowing out the scope to confuse yourself and others into thinking you had a cogent point or substantial argument. Anyone that lets you re-frame an argument so that you can feel like you've won is doing you a massive disservice by patronizing you.
It's obvious that it's more important for you to feel like you've had a moral victory than it is for you to understand what you're talking about.
> I really need to learn to stop engaging with people like you...I realize at this point that I'm definitely not reaching you and that you probably don't want to be reached. I'm sorry I tried, it seems like it was a waste of time.
If you want to apologize, do so to yourself for getting wrapped up in such nonsense and for allowing yourself to be manipulated out of critical thinking.
That's with no judgment intended on either argument :).
Racism is discriminating others based on their RACE
I actually feel like I've lost at this point, especially because now I've come back after I said I wouldn't. If you came into this expecting there to be a winner, my apologies. I also don't think you actually mean cogent as it is rigorously defined, because if you do, neither of us has a cogent argument. (that is, a well-formed inductive argument) I'm also not trying to weasel out (whatever that means) by acting like I had an argument. I was only trying to say that I'm really not the first person to make this argument and that it's extremely well-trodden ground in the social sciences, and that the social sciences are too often unfairly dismissed by technologists like you and myself. I used to do it a lot too, then I decided to minor in philosophy ;).
>If you want to apologize, do so to yourself for getting wrapped up in such nonsense and for allowing yourself to be manipulated out of critical thinking.
You mean my whole fallacy is wrong?
Just to clarify my argument here and make sure we actually disagree on the fundamentals before we go any further:
Hypothesis: People of color are oppressed in American society in ways that white people aren't.
For the purposes of the following, "fighting oppression" is defined as taking those actions which eliminate structures and attitudes that perpetuate racial oppression, such as supporting affirmative action, properly investigating and if necessary indicting cops that kill people, directly protecting people of color from violence and discrimination, teaching black history in public schools, etc.
Deontological proposition: Not fighting the oppression of people of color violates the categorical imperative. ("act as if your actions were to become universal law")
Utilitarian proposition: We are obligated to fight the oppression of people of color because the human cost of this oppression in bodies is high and consistent and it will decrease if we fight oppression.
My intuition is that you disagree more with the initial hypothesis than my belief that if the hypothesis is correct that action is justified in either of the two dominant moral frameworks, though I could be wrong (in which case it's kind of silly we're still arguing at this juncture). In the interest of focus, would you mind articulating what specifically you disagree with in my specific hypothesis? You'll probably say I'm trying to shift the burden of proof here, and I'll admit that it can have that effect but moreover I've lost track of the actual disagreement between us in all this.
* Americans (as individuals) are racist,
whereas your hypothesis is:
* America (as a society) is racist.
The latter acknowledges that a society can be racist because of past actions even if all present members are non-racist, whereas the former assumes every member to be guilty of racism unless proven innocent. That's a very strong (and in my opinion, inaccurate and unfounded) accusation towards individual Americans, and it shifts the burden of proof in a way that is unjust towards the accused.
In short, the challenge is to diagnose and fight systemic racism without unjustly blaming individuals caught up in that system, even if said individuals appear to be the beneficiaries. The same is true for the fight against sexism.
As for the "all people can be racist" issue, remember that because systemic racism against white people is minuscule, the personal majority of racism that white people do experience is personal racism, an in this area minorities are just as bad as white people, if not more so. As an Asian-American I have encountered some personal racism, the vast majority of that from blacks and latinos while in middle and high school.
You can see this in action above where jolux starts out using the first definition ("there is a high probability you have at the very least some implicit bias against non-white people") then switches back and forth.
Also it doesn't really matter to the person being discriminated against whether it's a question of individual will or implicit bias, and we are still responsible for both. I will even argue that there's a high probability most white people have a lot of explicit bias as well, the reason I didn't mention that is because you can't test it empirically in the same way as implicit bias.
It's because most people by default adhere to a toxic combination of virtue ethics and retributive justice. Under that system, if you do bad things, the obligation isn't on you to improve yourself and your actions, but on others to make you suffer because you are a "bad person". People don't want to suffer, so they reject the initial premise.
Virtue ethics has its positives, but retributive justice needs to die in a fire.
> * America (as a society) is racist.
If that is what jolux meant I have misread too.
To me it reads like jolux is speaking about us as individual racists, which more or less obviously is easily interpreted as an attempted insult.
Understanding ones own bias' is important in understanding how to help correct the problems.
> as are pretty much all other white people in the US
Oh, I see now.
> it's sort of a nasty default state of being born white in a white supremacist society
Yes, so people with white skin all think/feel a certain way, mhmm?
No, it's not like everyone consciously chooses to be racist, it's just that you sort of learn it subconsciously if you're not really careful. It's sort of like if the first programming language you learn is PHP then your use of other languages will be colored by it unless you make a conscious effort to unlearn.
I think that a part of human nature make us distrust those who are different, whatever the difference is.
I have to say that I had the prejudice that the U.S. people were racists and traveling around the place proved me otherwise.
The people of the US absolutely are racist xenophobes; they've proven it by their voting patterns over and over, especially with the latest election. They're just good at hiding it from you when you talk to them in person. The real racism comes out in the voting booth.
The cops in the first 2 examples, the judge / DA / prosecutor / jury in the 3rd example, and the legislators ho wrote the law in the 4th example.
Or "stop and frisk" took place in areas with higher crime rates, where, coincidentally, non-white people live in higher density. Weird how you didn't want to address the disproportionate rates of crime by race, which I think is closer to the root of the problem, no matter how uncomfortable it is to talk about.
> - Punishment for crack-cocaine (mainly black users) was 10x worse than powder cocaine (mainly rich, white users), even though it's the same drug.
This statement gets paraded around a lot. The idea is strict penalties to discourage use, which is why crack-cocaine sentencing converges with that of methamphetamine (predominantly "white" drug). Whereas crack-cocaine decimated predominantly minority-inhabited areas of major US cities, would you have preferred for the response to be weaker?
> - North Carolina basically admitted to creating laws to stop black voters from voting ( http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2016/07/north-ca.... )
Per article: "...a requirement that voters show photo identification to vote and restored same-day voter registration, a week of early voting, pre-registration for teenagers, and out-of-precinct voting."
There's nothing intrinsic in someone's skin color or ethnic background that would cause someone to not have a valid ID -- and under a democratic leadership, the ruling party will do everything in its power to make sure the votes continue going in their favor. It's not racist or xenophobic to want a voter of a district to prove he or she is from that district.
I don't know much about North Carolina and maybe they're terrible racists, but I still plainly reject that America is by-majority racist or xenophobic.
> Hell, I live in Silicon Valley and I see racism every day...I can go on and on. No matter how "well-traveled" you think you are, perhaps you weren't hanging out with the people who are being oppressed. They are speaking out pretty much constantly now, if you choose to listen.
We're just trading anecdotes, so my statement of experience that I haven't seen it disproportionately affect non-white people is on even footing with your assertion of seeing it "every day". Maybe I'm being sensitive, but it seems like you're trying to suggest that I don't "listen" or that I have major misconceptions about my world experiences, which is a weirdly casual thing and vaguely insulting.
> My Facebook friends post some seriously gnarly memes sometimes, so bad that sometimes I even wonder if they even realize they are being racist.
It's possible that you see racism every day because you associate with racists. I don't socialize with people that have exposed themselves as racists (because I find them ridiculous and small), which might explain the differences in our perceptions.
For users? YES! (in both cases)
> There's nothing intrinsic in someone's skin color or ethnic background that would cause someone to not have a valid ID
Just like there's nothing intrinsic in skin color or ethnic background for higher crime rates. Yet due to economic/social factors, the rates vary in both cases. Generally the lower household income, the higher percentage of no-ID. Which maps onto races as expected.
I think that treatment should be a larger part of the response to crack or meth, but my point was that specifically targeting a substance for harsher policing is not strictly a single-race issue.
> Just like there's nothing intrinsic in skin color or ethnic background for higher crime rates. Yet due to economic/social factors, the rates vary in both cases. Generally the lower household income, the higher percentage of no-ID. Which maps onto races as expected.
Agreed, entirely, but I'm suggesting that the proof-of-eligibility was about voter count, but opposition knew the message would travel better if they conflated it with race.
But if a group that is preferred by white people pushes just for the introduction/enforcement of that rule, knowing that it gives them an advantage? You could play semantics and talk about groups affected by income, etc. That's an interesting discussion and could give higher confidence numbers. But the practical effect is that with the ID enforcement, at most 5% of likely supporters and at most 13% of likely opposition group lose the right to vote.
Because politics and vote count. Same reason why re-districting/gerrymandering happens.
> You could play semantics and talk about groups affected by income, etc. That's an interesting discussion and could give higher confidence numbers. But the practical effect is that with the ID enforcement, at most 5% of likely supporters and at most 13% of likely opposition group lose the right to vote.
This is towards what I'm saying -- it's about expected votes from districts. If the motivation from the Democrats is about voter blocs, that's about winning positions and not about "fighting racism", but they're go with the latter because emotional appeal.
An idea so thoroughly rebuked by countless studies around the US and the world as to be effectively useless. And anyone in a law-making position who with a straight face pleads ignorance to this deserves ridicule.
Not in race, but socioeconomic classes, yes.
> My black friends get pulled over all the time for "driving while black."
read the WP page on this: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Driving_while_black
unless you or your friend have statistics for you area, there is no way to diagnose individual cases of DWB.
How did you come by the links you provided? If you googled "racism in america", for example, your results will be biased towards certain kinds of evidence, having the same result as cherry-picking.
> Stop and Frisk laws disproportionately target people of color
The article says: "Where there are black and Hispanic majorities, so too is there increased stop-and-frisk activity".
The article doesn't give enough information to conclude what's going on (and we also don't know if what is shown is representative of relevant statistics available on that area), but the best they can conclude is "race is undeniably a factor" - this is not the same as "racism".
Aslso, in the comments of that article: https://spatialityblog.com/2012/07/27/nyc-stop-frisk-cartogr...
> Punishment for crack-cocaine (mainly black users) was 10x worse than powder cocaine (mainly rich, white users), even though it's the same drug.
Again, you push a correlation, and imply causation as proof of racism. You could do the same with loans: too much or too little can be harmful. In the case of crack "it's the same drug" isn't relevant, if it was, why would black users just switch to powder cocaine? It's the answers to that question that shows the difference, and the reason crack is considered more harmful.
It's also not entirely true that crack is a different substance:
"despite the fact that powder cocaine and crack cocaine both derive from cocaine, the two are different substances." -- http://cocaine.org/the-difference-between-powder-cocaine-and...
Whatever the chemical basis, crack is made from powdered cocaine, and:
> crack cocaine is more psychologically addicting than powder cocaine, and is thus more likely to result in chronic and heavy use
take from that what you will. maybe the above is a result of it's association with poor, or even black users. But whatever the case, it does cause more harm. Why assume harsher penalties are there to harm black/poor/etc communities, when we are talking about a severely harmful substance. Are things better when drugs like this are treated with lighter sentences?
> North Carolina basically admitted to creating laws to stop black voters from voting
I'm not so familiar with this one, but I do feel there is more correlation stated here, with some questions about causation:
Some raised here: http://www.dailywire.com/news/7992/5-statistics-show-voter-i...
> African American voters, who were less likely to hold the required forms of photo ID
The suggestion here is that this is why the vote was restricted in this way. But ID restrictions also correlate with attempts to reduce voting fraud, plus what isn't there a difference between IDs held and IDs that can be obtained?
> The state argued in court that "counties with Sunday voting in 2014 were disproportionately black" and "disproportionately Democratic," and said it did away with Sunday voting as a result.
put another way, Sunday voting is racist, because it disproportionately aids black voters?
without more context about the effect of Sunday voting on voter opportunity/consistency, it's not really possible to judge.
More concerning to me are perhaps the claims of undue focus, e.g.:
> fraud was more common in mail-in absentee voting, which was not affected
However, I would be skeptical given the other things in the article claimed to be "smoking guns".
In summary, I don't dispute the above might be true, but I'm not convinced by the article above , because they don't answer some basic, obvious questions I'd have about the implied causes.
What the heck is this nonsense ? crack is more addictive because it takes a shorter route to the brain. the shorter the route the more addictive it is. And that's on the premises that a substance can be addictive and not a matter of lifestyle and lack of a fulfilling life. (See rat park and Bruce Alexander).
Also, I covered that association may also be a factor. The point is, crack is seen as having a greater effect of harm, so it's not clear harsher sentences are intended to harm black communities.
Yet again, I initially receive nothing but downvotes for providing a full response with various counterpoints, links etc, yet no comebacks or refutations...
You know neither my intent, nor knowledge; but a "violent history of racism in our voting systems" is irrelevant to a discussion of statistics.
Read the last line of my previous post.
That's just the first link I found of ddg. It's plenty easy to find more. Things are getting better, but we are far from done with this fight.
Anecdotally: I've lived on the west-coast, and the midwest/south. In both areas I have seen blatant racism take place both culturally by individuals, and systematically by police.
As an American, I ashamedly disagree that this is at all libel.
No, you're going by anecdote and perception, which is why you fell back to "well I think it looks racist".
> The statistics are showing that we treat other races worse than we treat white people.
Who is we in this scenario? Keep in mind that you're trying to prove that the US is majority racist.
> Nothing I'm saying is a lie, so I'm not even sure how your expression applies.
You stated "if it acts like a duck... (it's probably a duck)" to sidestep having to prove that the US is systematically racist. To you, it's not a lie and you've constructed a fallacy in which the onus would be to convince you, personally to change your perception.
The expression applies because if everything and everyone is slated as racist, when actual racism happens, reports of it will just be lost in the noise.
I will admit that I don't know if I would argue that the US is majority racist (the op comment does indeed say that). I don't have the stats on that, and I don't legitimately think we could get those. So if that is what you are arguing for, I won't argue against. I'm only arguing that the US has a big problem with racism that we still need to deal with, which is far from solved. Enough that I would consider us a "racist" nation.
I think you're right that there's still societal racism in America but just looking at wealth doesn't account for immigration or past racism.
You're in the minority of US citizens. Doesn't necessarily prove the earlier point, but your rebuttal, qualifying yourself as "well-travelled", explicitly makes your perspective that of a minority's view.
How is it "libel" to label a majority of a population something? If our regulations are a reflection of the population's positions (arguably, they are), then we're definitely afraid of people from other countries.
Oh come off it -- I said within and outside of the US as a suggestion that I've met many people and that my view isn't representative of a 10km radius.
Americans even have other cultures built into their language and core identities (self-identifying as Irish-American, Italian-American, Native American, African-American). If you have a serious suggestion for how to improve something, make that suggestion and don't try to legitimize it by spewing insults as a smoke screen for a half=baked thesis.
> How is it "libel" to label a majority of a population something?
Because you're peddling an offensive fiction.
> If our regulations are a reflection of the population's positions (arguably, they are), then we're definitely afraid of people from other countries.
You can start by proving this. How are "we definitely afraid"?
Thank you for saying this. I've been quite frustrated before and since the election about this. It seems that the left has (and has been doing it for a while) created a "these are the good people" vs the bad people mentality. I want rational people who make decisions based on evidence. Not something that "jim posted a meme on fb.. that's evidence that the meme is real"
Riling people up to "build a wall". Language about immigrants coming in to rape our children, steal our jobs, etc. I don't know what part of the US you're well-travelled in, but much of the Trump rhetoric of last summer struck a nerve with many folks in my area. Now, they're not chanting in the streets and burning effigies, but they mostly are "afraid" of different folks ('afraid' or 'disdainful' of).
I can't "prove" this anymore than you can "prove" it doesn't exist, but these attitudes are not a statistical aberration in my circles.
> I said within and outside of the US as a suggestion that I've met many people and that my view isn't representative of a 10km radius.
But... if you're someone who's travelled around a lot - say, outside the US (which you seem to imply), you are definitely in a minority. There are only around 100m US citizens who have passports at all. If you've travelled internationally, you're in a minority.
If you were trying to make some other point, maybe be more specific. But your initial rebuttal that you "disagree", presumably because you're "well travelled"... base your disagreement on something which connects you with a majority of the public (and there very well may be ways to do that, but "I'm well travelled" already disconnects your experiences from a majority of your countrymen, assuming you're a US citizen).
Also, I don't think you can "libel" a population. You can say libelous things about a person ("a published false statement that is damaging to a person's reputation; a written defamation") but not a large group. My only experience of the word over the past several decades is in cases involving an individual (or individual entity in some cases). You might write libelous things about Bill Gate, or possibly even Microsoft, but not "the computer industry" or "business".
But somehow there were a lot of accusations of racism, sexism, ..., etc. without references, details, rational support, evidence, examples, etc. It was as if the speaker was just trying to please, get the support (in the civil war) of people who would agree, for whatever reason. Then the speaker was willing to offend people who wanted evidence or disagreed. So, the campaign went.
Now people are still passing out various, broad and/or narrow, accusations of racism, etc. without evidence, references, examples, etc.
Okay, I'll chip in an example: Not too difficult to find is
which claims to be
from November 13, 2015, 9:00 am on how some years ago Trump worked hard in the wealthy area Palm Beach, FL to eliminate racism in the private clubs. So, apparently the situation had long been for rich WASPs or some such and others need not apply. In the fight Trump opened his club, and before he was done he filed a lawsuit. According to the article, basically he won; at least on the surface, and, at least in public policy statements or some such, now all the clubs in Palm Beach admit while ignoring race.
So, that's some evidence that Trump fought racism.
My point: In the campaign such evidence was mostly ignored. So, there were lots of accusations of racism, etc., but without any serious evidence.
The US knows very well what good evidence is. We use only good information, evidence, etc. in mechanical engineering of airplanes, ships, buildings, bridges, etc., in electrical and electronic engineering, in computer science, e.g., a proof that heap sort runs in O( n ln(n) ), in law, medicine, science, military technology, etc. But in the civil war of politics, somehow the accusations go without evidence.
So, with the low level of evidence, the accusations grow wilder. I shut out such accusations and occasionally posted blog and feedback entries and wrote e-mail letters of protest at the lack of evidence. I tried to push back; I saw no evidence of success.
But I remain surprised at the number of people who apparently believe the commonly given accusations, give no evidence, and apparently have seen no evidence.
The good news is that accusations with no evidence should fly about like a wet paper airplane. The bad news is that apparently too many people are quite prepared to spout and/or believe really bad accusations with no significant evidence at all.
Look at it this way: 'mjolk' could be well travelled within the United States and have a very good idea of Americans sentiments. Therefore (s)he could be confidently expressing a true statement. Also, being a minority voice is not an indicator of how truthful or accurate someone is. When people believed the Earth was flat, were the minority of thinkers who decided it was round any less credible?
You are right about the word libel though, it's the wrong word in this instance. I can't think of a better substitute better than 'generalizing' though.
For what it's worth, I wasn't in love with the word choice, but I've not had a recent exchange in which one side is shouting "racist" and something productive come about -- and I should be working :)
fair point - hadn't considered that angle.
And yes, being in the minority doesn't necessarily make you right or wrong. Being "well-travelled" still strikes me as being tied in with a degree of wealth/power/autonomy that the average person doesn't have, and it may be harder to truly understand the 'average' citizen when you're in a position to travel (internally and internationally?), which most people aren't. Much like I think it's pretty hard for most multi-millionaires (especially 2nd and 3rd generational ones) to represent my interests or understand my real concerns in elected offices.
Latin american here. From our perspective, the last presidential election is all the evidence we need.
But, in all truth, many Latin American countries are even more racist than the US.
Keep in mind that the parent comment stated "a large majority of the US population is xenophobic and/or racist".
As a simple example, our current president campaigned on a wall to keep out "rapist" Mexicans and to prevent anyone who was Muslim from entering the country because they were terrorists. Those are both explicitly xenophobic statements. They "showing a dislike of or prejudice against people from other countries". Still, about 60 million people voted for him, which means that to those 60 million, either his statements were a good thing, or they were minor enough downsides as to be ignored.
He also said that he would block any immigration from Muslim countries until those people could be fully vetted. You only need to look at the Paris, German and UK attacks to see the consequences of not doing that.
Neither of those sound all that unreasonable to me.
> They’re bringing drugs. They’re bring crime. They’re rapists… And some, I assume, are good people.
Which is a much stronger claim than what you wrote.
> Is that untrue? If it is true, should we be letting them in?
It's true that some people moved from country X to country Y and committed crime Z, for almost any chosen X, Y, Z. Yes, US should be letting people in. Just as other countries should be letting Americans in.
We don't have ability to read minds and predict the future. The best alternative you have is past statistics and unless you've got statistics that show rape is a really disproportionate between country X and the US, (and even that needs a lot of context besides numbers) this claim is just repeating bad stereotypes.
Or in case you want a specific example that works the other way: "Americans are child murderers (just look at school shootings) and drug abusers (look at number of jailed for drugs) and some, I assume, are good people. Other countries shouldn't let Americans in if they don't want those problems."
Wait, why? My understanding is that the rhetoric was specifically about illegal immigration. Why should the US not police its borders or its people lose the ability to make decisions on immigration?
One is: do you really think that it's feasible to build such wall, staff it with people, 24/7 monitoring, uninterrupted power, etc. etc. (seriously, think about the geography of the region and how insanely huge that project would have to be and how much would it cost) or is the wall just a name for general direction which will affect everybody? Border rules are usually there just to stop people you don't want, but they do affect many others as well because of process issues.
Second: If either an actual wall, or some kind of extra restrictions come into play, even if aimed at just the illegal immigration - what effect would it have on the legal movement? What effect would it have on ratios of criminals -vs- others? For example, even crappy treatment from TSA discourages people from flying. Extra restrictions may discourage a family going on (legal) holidays. But will it really discourage drug trade, where people already risk their lives as it is?
> what effect would it have on the legal movement?
Why would it have an effect? The process to come to the United States is well-documented and there are US tax-payer backed services to help guide people through the process. From direct experience, it's a predictable, bureaucratic machine.
> But will it really discourage drug trade, where people already risk their lives as it is?
Possible, because tighter controls or deportations of people in the US against its laws clamps down on the support structures needed to help coordinate and support trafficking. However, illicit drug trade isn't the only negative effect from illegal immigration -- there's also a lowering of domestic wages, increased burden on social services, and human health risk as illegal immigrant peoples are hesitant to engage the police or housing services when major issues arise.
Chilling effect. Just in this thread, you can find 4 people who say they avoid flying to/through the US because of treatment at the border. You can add me to that list as well for the next 4 years. Those decisions don't exist in a vacuum - if you introduce restrictions in one part of the process, people will notice.
The internet is a hyperbolic place. There's nothing saying those people would have come to the US anyway.
> You can add me to that list as well for the next 4 years.
With the lack of introspection happening in my political party, you might want to double that estimate.
All you need is luck (lottery), love (maybe), a job, and, on average, about $25K available for immigration fees alone.
The problem with the example is it is purely qualitative, not quantitative.
Yet, I notice, in comparison to Trumps quote you tacked something on the end:
> Other countries shouldn't let Americans in if they don't want those problems.
Did Trump suggest all Mexican immigration end forever?
That could be interpreted in many ways. Could you explain what you meant by that?
> Did Trump suggest all Mexican immigration end forever?
I don't know. And I don't see how it's relevant to this discussion. I haven't mentioned "all" and "forever". Sounds like a straw man argument.
Quantitative, as in, with quantity such that different qualities can be compared wrt relative magnitude.
You're original statement was that other countries "shouldn't let Americans in". If this doesn't apply to all, and forever, then it might be comparable to Trumps quote.
>Donald J. Trump is calling for a total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States until our country's representatives can figure out what is going on,
He later walked this claim back, but the statement was originally a ban on immigration by anyone of a given religion, not anyone from certain territories. Those claims were later walked back by other republicans, but the original claim made by Trump was for a ban on all Muslim immigration (which is on its face unconstitutional).
This is what he said:
"When Mexico sends it people, they're not sending their best. They're not sending you. They're sending people that have lots of problems, and they're bringing those problems with us. They're bringing drugs. They're bringing crime. They're rapists. And some, I assume, are good people,"
Now I'm not going to defend the delivery. I don't think Mexico "sends" people in general, but it may happen (e.g. Mariel boat lift).
However, if the message is that bad people from Mexico are getting into the country and that should stop, I don't think anyone could argue that. Could it actually be stopped? Probably not, but it's worth trying.
There are plenty of respected and knowledgeable legal scholars who disagree.
1. Eric Posner - http://ericposner.com/is-an-immigration-ban-on-muslims-uncon...
2. Peter Spiro & David Martin - http://www.politico.com/story/2016/11/donald-trump-muslim-re...
3. John Banzhaf - http://lawnewz.com/high-profile/president-obama-is-wrong-on-...
And here (http://blog.constitutioncenter.org/2015/12/constitution-chec...) is a discussion that points out that it's a complicated question and "led some scholars to the confident conclusion that a flat ban on Muslims would now be upheld, without judicial interference."
2. Isn't referring to a ban on Muslim immigration, but on a registry, which is a whole different beast
3. Banzhaf isn't a constitutional Lawyer, he's the one quoted by breitbart, btw, and what he glosses over is the very relevant 'detrimental to the united states' aspect of the Plenary Powers doctrine. It is much easier to make an argument that we should suspend immigration from a state we are at war with than from a religion, since it is practically impossible to make the argument that Muslims are more detrimental to the united states than Christians or Atheists.
and your fourth article concludes by saying
>It does seem reasonably clear that, if a proper challenger could be found, the courts very likely would be open to hear their claim. And it would not be a sure thing that they would lose in that forum.
2. Fine, my bad.
3. Him being quoted by Breitbart means nothing. I mean Obama has been quoted by them. Clinton has been. Pretty much every single prominent Democrat politician has been. The only thing that is exposed by saying "breitbart" is that you disagree with the right.
And on the fourth, exactly. I'm not arguing whether it's constitutional or not. I'm saying that anyone who says that it's unconstitutional on it's face is full of it. It's clearly not obviously unconstitutional as people who study the constitution and work in the field feel that it could go either way.
It depends, there are SCOTUS rulings that (most) people consider "bad". These create precedent.
>Him being quoted by Breitbart means nothing. I mean Obama has been quoted by them. Clinton has been. Pretty much every single prominent Democrat politician has been. The only thing that is exposed by saying "breitbart" is that you disagree with the right.
No, I was pointing out that I had already addressed this specific example when I stated that "The only people I can find who believe it might be constitutional are non-constitutional laywers quoted by Breitbart." Banzhaf is the non-constitutional lawyer who was quoted by Breitbart. Now, you're quite correct that I don't find Breitbart to be a reliable source of news (although construing that to 'I disagree with the right' is a bit of gymnastics), but its also orthogonal to my point.
> I'm saying that anyone who says that it's unconstitutional on it's face is full of it.
That also very much depends. If we're talking " a total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States", that is on its face unconstitutional, since it includes American Citizens. If we're talking a registry, it probably isn't. If we're talking about refugees who are Muslim, then there's the grey area. But if you take him at the words he used, it is unconstitutional, and most of the blogs have caveats that say something along the lines of "a ban on American Citizen Muslim's returning from abroad is unconstitutional on its face, so we'll ignore that and talk about refugees and immigrants"
> a total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States
A shutdown of entry, to use your own words.
All the 9/11 hijackers were on visas. They should have been stopped from coming in. At least one of them was.
I am not American nor am I white but calling all the people who voted for Trump as racists is disingenuous.
If you are a middle age person whose job went overseas, you cant find another job, you know Washington is corrupt , you hear an outsider saying that he is going to bring back jobs and make America great. You like that message and you vote for him. You just ignore rest of the things he says because what choice do you have, all you hear about Clinton is her email scandal.
There's no place on HN for such belligerent, vapid crap like this.
First link I found off ddg. There are plenty more with a simple search
> So, the effects of our decisions end up with racist results, yet we aren't racists?
It seems like you use a different definition of the word "racist" to me. What exactly is a "racist result"?
Likewise, you use a different definition of the word "statistics" to me also. Even you don't think it's a great example.
And no matter what link I post, someone will have a problem with it. It's easy to find these stats, they aren't new. How about this: http://www.forbes.com/sites/jasonoberholtzer/2012/07/17/stop... or this: https://www.dosomething.org/us/facts/11-facts-about-racial-d... or this: https://mic.com/articles/96452/one-troubling-statistic-shows..., I could do this all day, but I wont. Those were just on the first page of results. There are stats everywhere about how bad we are.
My definition would be that you are disproportionately less likely to have violent police actions taken against you, disproportionately less likely to be in poverty, disproportionately more likely to go to college, etc. if you are white. While I don't think the stats of these ever will be proportional (nor necessarily should they be), it's clear from everything I've seen that there is what I would define as an unofficial "class separation".
Anecdotally: I have met seen people who "wouldn't hire blacks" or "didn't want no mexican working above any whites". These people are hard to gets statistics on, because they would never admit to being racist. These statistics reflect that hidden reality that nobody would openly admit to.
The results you are posting have the same problems HuffPo have. The fact that there are a large number of these sites isn't relevant to their quality. Again "stats" need to be high quality, not just stated and repeated.
> My definition would be that you are disproportionately less likely to...
Does that mean that if asians are doing better than whites, then there is something racist there to?
Customs officials in all countries have broad latitude to inspect incoming passengers and baggage. Fucking around with them and refusing to answer or evading questions is franking a stupid strategy.
What has changed is that there is more inspections and more theatre. They are more consistent(-ly awful) everywhere, including sleepy Canadian broader crossings.
So one year, after having moved to Seattle, I thought I could drive the gift across the border, make my declarations there and then mail it from Surry, BC. So I took my gift -- unwrapped -- in it's shipping box -- untaped -- and drove to the border. When I got to the window they asked why I was visiting Canada. I honestly told them that I was coming to ship a package and explained why.
I spent the next three hours sitting in a waiting room while they went through my cell phone, they went through the open box I was going to mail, charged me import duties, went through my car from top to bottom. Eventually they sent me on my way. I drove ten minutes to a UPS store and mailed the package.
Returned to the US, when I arrived at the booth, I handed them the paperwork the Canadian side had given me, they noted the time and asked why I had visited Canada and why it was only forty-five minutes, I explained that I was mailing a package, handed them the receipt from the UPS store and explained why. They laughed and waved me through.
Border crossing can be hit or miss depending on the mood of the agent.
Of course, this might just be luck of the draw.
They would ask me questions like "how long are you going to be in Canada?" when I'd answer that I didn't know, they would press me about why I didn't know. One guy who had held me up for far too long, I basically told him "I'm Canadian, you don't have an option to let me in or not" at that point, he let me through...
Be careful with that - while they have to let you in, your stuff is another matter.
I'm kind of surprised that this was even a question for a Canadian citizen.
American guard is like "do you have more than 5 bottles of wine you need to declare? No, cool"
Contrast with Russian customs who looked at my passport and said "Canada? Okay go"
Flying into Toronto City airport I frequently just get a nod and hand wave.
When I get to the Canadian border, once they realize I'm Canadian, everything changes. It's a very friendly, warm greeting like a couple of old buddies that are heading out for a beer. My American wife, who's watched this a ridiculous number of times is just blown away by how I'm treated.
However, at the US border, while not always bad, I have run into several border agents that have been pure assholes. I've been detained and searched a number of times and have always been polite to a fault - I'm as white as the driven snow and have never broken a law, or been arrested. But you would think I'm flagged as a suspected drug runner or potential terrorist sympathizer. Sadly, it's simply not a stereotype.
I had no passport, and the Canadian customs didn't ask for one.
The Canadian customs officials were all women, looked friendly, and were smiling. It looked like Canada was a really nice place!
So, I joked, self deprecating, that here I was, a US citizen from the crass, crude, violent, insensitive, vulgar US! :-) Right away with some seriousness of agreement the Canadian woman concurred! Still, it was a nice trip to Canada! I like Canada and hope to go back!
Of course, next time, in trying to return, maybe the US customs won't let be back in!
I think it depends heavily on the crossing and the specific staffing there. You have two jurisdictions sort of working side by side, so there's lots of fodder for tit-for-tat bullshit.
Now, this only applies to US citizens returning to the US. A US citizen arriving, for example, at Amsterdam, can certainly be turned away for any reason whatsoever.
Here is the lengthy document I remember: https://www.eff.org/document/defending-privacy-us-border-gui...
They can demand a password from you, you can refuse to give it, and they can then decide not to let you in the country. Being polite and respectful in your refusal to share an encryption key can mean less trouble.
A point that might have caused confusion: they can seize your device. The document does not specify what happens if you decline to give the device (as in whether you are arrested or simply declined entry to the country). As far as I understand the references, courts have not had to decide on this question yet.
Yes, that's a stupid question but that's the political trade-off here. Mind blowing inconvenience and temporary invasion of freedoms versus dead children. If anything happened, you and everybody around you would be unelectable. Perhaps for that reason alone this should be put to a national vote. That's a much cleaner way to divest political responsibility.
And while I think there's a lot of evidence that the direct effectiveness of Security Theatre is pretty weak. It's much harder to gauge what would actually happen if they dropped the visual deterrents. Would more people try their luck? Is it worth the risk?
The "is removing theater worth the risk" rhetoric, along with "somebody please think of the children", can be used to dismantle ANY of the freedoms we currently enjoy. So I don't find that at all persuasive.
If it's possible for politicians to introduce new invasive laws but impossible to remove them then it's pretty clear where the country ends up.
So yes, it's totally 100% worth the risk. Because the alternative is accepting that all our freedoms will continue to erode, and that's far more depressing than any amount of terrorism.
You seem fairly freedom-uber-alles —as many vocal people are— but it'd be genuinely interesting to get referendum results on issues like this to see just how much freedom people will willingly hand over for the mere hope of added safety for them and their family.
I agree with you. Fear-mongering arguments are used to dismantle freedom all the time and it genuinely inconveniences a lot of people to suffer through things like TFA, but we're talking about a fraction of a percent of travellers. Would the whole agree with you or succumb to herd mentality and try to stay safe, whatever the cost?
I'm not freedom-uber-alles, I'm happy to acknowledge all of politics consists of difficult trade-offs. I think the case for the TSA is especially weak, though, and you seem to agree with me on that. I don't think referendums on these issues would help, because it's too easy to scare people into accepting "temporary measures".
Don't get me wrong, the country is absolutely amazing, people are friendly, scenery is outstanding (and this is coming from someone born in NZ). But yeah, border controls are just utterly awful.
I think my first introduction was transiting from Canada to UK via the US in 1999. A very friendly goodbye from the Canadian immigration, then a short walk to probably the most unwelcoming customs I've ever had the displeasure of enduring. But I'll admit, they've been consistent over the past 18 years.
Now that a visa is required even for transit, I've basically just given up and now fly exclusively via Asia. Bonus is, it doesn't get any friendlier than flying Singapore Airlines - and the stopover destinations are awesome.
I've travelled some of the US (not enough) and I absolutely love the country. But yeah, the overzealous security is definitely a turn-off.
Come back when there is an actual definition of terrorism and your side is not guilty of hundred times more of that than the other side.
I've since obtained TSA pre-check but this is fixing a problem that shouldn't exist.
Additionally, there's some question over TSA's ban on leaving the screening area, see  for a survey. For an argument on unreasonable seizures, see David Post's post .
Enjoy your freedom of speech.
Not hacker news, but my "anonymous" online postings that were anti-TSA most certainly affected my travel experience. And I'm not talking radical activist postings. Just real world bs postings about my continued bad experiences, and my personal opinions such as the one in my original post.
: was it carnivore? echelon? five eyes? man my memory is not so good.
Did they force her to open her account or did they have access beforehand? How did your friend react?
pretty sure they don't know what hacker news is.
things beyond that are just the icying on the cake.
I wear socks when I travel. In the summer, I run barefoot outside through our gravel parking lot to toughen up my feet.
I don't travel enough by plan to worry about the health effects of an xray machine, but I do drive my car daily.
And well, I don't spend a lot of time carefully packing my suitcase.
So if that's the worst you get from the TSA, well who cares, you're experiencing the same things everyone else who travels in the US.
Don't forget data retention. Those pseudo-nude pictures of all of us (including your children) are probably stored somewhere for perpetuity.
Next time you go through the back-scatter xray, turn around and look at the monitor. It's now a picture of a generic human that shows any area that the agent's should investigate.
I'm not saying that stuff isn't awful. Just that it's minor compared to other hardships that people routinely overcome.
When you visit a mosque or a hindu temple, you are required to remove your shoes.
Also being asian, when you visit my house, you are also required to remove your shoes.
...and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that
mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are
sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the
forms to which they are accustomed.
When you're not an American citizen, even at the time you could be detained indefinitely in high security prison without being able to tell anyone. The story of the guy to whom it actually happened on the motive that he was involved in importing super nintendo legalish accessory (game genie or disk copier or something along these lines) in a different country should still be floating around. Then there is this guy on whom they pulled gattaca stuff as in vacuuming his laptop keyboard and run the collected dust through lab analysis. This is pre-TSA stuff, so IMHO the travel situation in the US has not really changed in nature, only in scale.
Everbody is just arguing about their favorite president, or rather the one they hate less. While all that was left of that "freedom" is slowly breaking away.
Freedom is so much more than freedom of speech...
Yeah the whole TSA is a cruel joke on the whole freedom theme...
Encrypt them with spacefiller data and start crossing borders, and then refuse to provide passwords and abandon them for sheer amusement.
Way more fun than recycling old laptops and batteries. And better than planning to travel empty handed, in anticipation of getting ripped off by pesky customs guards.
In mid-2001 I had to fly from San Jose to Washington Dulles with a Sun Netra 1120 server. It's 4U and FULL length. Weighed about 60 pounds.
I was late for my flight and the datacenter I retrieved it from had no packaging for it so I just carried it onto the plane - bare.
It fit in the overhead.
Long shot, but I'm currently in a position to highly appreciate some new hardware at the moment.
Ultimately I think my answer would be weighing the machine's rareness or unusualness against its power draw, fan noise or other annoyances. More of the former means that I'll accept more of the latter :) but in a worst-case scenario I'll just collect stuff and file it away, for example I was given some Sun V240s a while ago that I hope to be able to fire up when I can rack them in a well-ventilated faraway corner where I can't hear them.
Practically speaking I'm curious where people get rid of i3 based systems and multi-TB HDDs at the moment; I (crazy badly) need a new file server, and (for obscure, fun reasons) saving up for new HDDs is taking quite a few more months (and proving more stressful to my family, sadly) than I'd anticipated.
I just replaced a mirrored pair of USB drives running off a Mac Mini with a NAS from Synology. File server, plus Plex server, plus backup server, all in one. It won't be cheap (even factoring in the Australian duty) but it's something that can be tucked into a closet out of sight.
I've long observed Synology's tech and thought it pretty cool, but in this case I'm trying to consolidate as much as possible onto one machine. I'm trying to find something i3-compatible which has a few PCI slots (ahahaha) - if I can, I can toss one of the old Creative X-Fis I have here in it and get amazing sound straight off the machine with the disks in it, and I can also use some of the other PCI cards I have here too (my pile of junk doesn't have any PCI-E stuff in it yet).
My main focus is just saving up for the HDDs right now. My goal is 5 5TB or 8TB disks so I can use raidz5, which offers 60% storage efficiency and the ability to lose any two disks without issue. The 18-24TB of space is actually needed right now in order to do some serious dedupe across the literally dozens of HDDs I've collected over the years - I've been needing a consolidated file server for about a decade, things have finally snowballed to the point where some of the disks are clicking and I haven't had access to my data for about a year now, heh.
PS - Australia's Internet situation is basically a gigantic laugh (I can only get ADSL2+ - 80KB/s upload :D - where I live), or I'd have pushed everything over to a friend in the States who's letting me borrow his ZFS pool until I get my own set up.
You don't get that option. The first thing that happens to everybody who is attempting to enter the US and flagged is that they give you a form to write down all keys and passwords you might have, they will then unlock your phone and attempt to find anything that might be used to bar you from entering.
A common method of confirming a profiled person seems to be using the "I have not done illegal drugs" checkbox on the entry documentation, they will find any drug reference on your devices using the passwords they just discovered. If you answer "yes", you're a criminal and you are barred from entry. If you answer "no" and they find any reference to any recreational drug, no matter the context, you just lied to a federal officer and you are barred from entry.
One rejection is enough to ban you for life from ESTA, so for most people entering the US who don't have a temporary working visa, being profiled is the last time you'll ever be able to enter the united states. A woman I was speaking to was bumped back onto their flight for a 3 year old SMS on her phone where a friend asked if she wanted to come over and smoke a joint.
This prohibits them from barring me from entering, and allow them only to seize the hdd/usb.
If the authorities take your device out of your sight, and you're sufficiently paranoid, then discard it and buy fresh hardware.
I mean you can do whatever you want but only the encryption is going to do you any good for actual security. Even if you make it really convincing that the drives are empty, procedure is still going to make them plug it into the copier anyways. I mean, from the article, they're confiscating headphones and power cords - there's no rhyme or reason here except intimidation; the agents don't investigate - someone else does.
Do what you like, but it sounds like hassle you're adding to what is going to happen anyways.
This depends entirely on the context. If you're a high-value target to an intelligence agency, there's a very high probability they would have someone pose as an agent of the TSA or CBP, or that they would have one of those agencies grant them access to your electronics. Someone involved in the publication of leaks or creation of security-related software would count as a high-value target.
they're confiscating headphones and power cords - there's no rhyme or reason here except intimidation
This, too depends on context. For the average person, the purpose is obviously nothing more than harassment. It's not difficult for a flash drive to be concealed inside a USB cable though, and if you're being targeted for a search, it makes sense for them to take everything.
On the other hand, a MicroSD card can be hidden just about anywhere, so if they're not going through all your stuff with a fine-toothed comb, the whole thing is theater.
They have threatened to shoot a presidential plane flying over Europe and searched it on the possibility that Snowden might be on board. So yes be aware when you are a person of interest.
My objection to the commenter's idea was pretty much that they're going out of their way to create a scenario in which it looks like the drive doesn't contain data, but unless you are a high value target, all that work would likely go unnoticed since you're just getting a standard agent. Even if you didn't, and you had a recently graduated CS savant as the agent, it seems more likely that there would be no investigation to wonder "should I copy this drive or not" - they'd just do it. Or just confiscate the drive, etc. You can make the effort to try to make the drives look blank, but that feels a lot like theatre. It'll maybe fool someone looking to pull data, but if they just do some raw disk dump like with dd or most forensic tools, I don't think it makes much of a difference. It's just planning for a situation that really wouldn't happen.
>It's not difficult for a flash drive to be concealed inside a USB cable though, and if you're being targeted for a search, it makes sense for them to take everything.
On the other hand, a MicroSD card can be hidden just about anywhere, so if they're not going through all your stuff with a fine-toothed comb, the whole thing is theater.
I'm not really sure on what the argument is here. Again, I think if a high priority target is really going through, they're not taking the microsd with them. There are far better ways of moving such data, such as a trusted 3rd party who receives the parcel through a series of proxies or a secure transmission, etc. If you are a high value target or in a dangerous profession or project that you feel warrants protection, there are a myriad of better ways of moving your sensitive data across checkpoints. If we wanted to get really fancy, you could have carrier pigeon or a falcon fly it across the border, or feed it to a dog and wait for the micro sd card to be pooped out.
I'm not saying that we shouldn't be wary and consider protections, but it just feels like this line of thinking in tech crowds tends to lead to incredibly specific scenarios that their solution resolves when many much more practical solutions exist. Under the auspices of fun mental exercise, I think it's fine, but when we're considering these as actual solutions to the very real threat of government searches at check points, then it's just adding bad suggestions.
I heard USB is a finicky thing, rather hard to implement correctly.
I wonder how many of these copier devices (-- are these dedicated DSM-like units? Probably embedded/outdated Linux then!) were already infected and grep copied contents for relevant data.
2. it may not just look random, unless the encryption is done in a way that tries to be plausibly deniable. Not all disk/data encryption methods try to hide their existence.
In practice, you can be barred from entering the US for effectively any reason at all, unless you are a citizen. At the border you have almost no rights at all.
1) use FDE with a LUKS-like scheme where the encryption header can be backed up and then removed (making sure you can restore it at your destination somehow).
2) Destroy the header before travel. Carry live media if you need to use the machine while traveling but keep it minimally provisioned (nothing personal on there).
3) Your machine essentially now contains random data (even to you), perhaps except the partition table and/or boot parition(s). Tell the authorities that you "fill your hardisk up with random data before traveling in case of theft."
This is a true statement because: a) without the LUKS header your own data is essentially random, even to you and b) the scheme does protect your data in the event of theft.
Thus you can safely utter it with no bravado.
An even better scheme would use verified boot of some kind so that if the device is confiscated and returned, and its critical to you, you may have some way of proving the boot loader hasn't been tampered with. But I can't speak as to the difficulty of this.
If you have relevant data, then you simply don't cross borders with a device containing such data (or with a computer at all). This is just common sense. This "plausible deniable encryption at the border" nonsense is just a cryptonerds imagination.
Do you have personal data on this device?
and you answer No (when you really do), then you're looking at 5 years in prison under §1001(a)(2). https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Making_false_statements
A much better method I have heard is to ship your electronics beforehand, travel with only a burner cellphone, then pick up the electronics after you arrive. Repeat when traveling out of the country.
Better yet, tell them your laptop broke while in the airport before boarding the plane, and you are going to buy a new harddisk/get it serviced when you arrive at your final destination. Much more plausible.
It's a felony to make false or deliberately misleading statements to U.S. border agents. Unless your laptop actually broke while in the airport, performing the scheme you described is a felony.
If you removed a key header which is crucial to the operation of your device in the airport, then the question is whether you can legally say, "my laptop broke in the airport," even if it was you who deliberately broke it.
This also covers the case of the question, "Does this device contain personal data?" To which you can truthfully answer, "Yes."
The point, in my original scenario also is not to lie, but to simply avoid being able to provide access under duress.
Why not whipe the disk and enter with a clean system if it's so critical?
wrt giving up the key under extended duress, I was thinking the same thing and aside from simply wiping the disk I can think of another scheme that might serve you well: give the header to a trusted 3rd party who could simply be the one actually controlling access to your data. Your lawyer for example.
Sounds like a sure-fire way to get them to harass you more and pay closer attention to yourself.
I still believe there is a way to adjust such an encryption scheme to meet the ideal criteria:
1. you're not lying
2. you can't provide access
3. you're not drawing extra attention to yourself
And you just made yourself a suspicious person to be further questioned and searched, while probably committed an offense that could send you to jail.
What? I have lived and worked all over the world, travel regularly to a bunch of countries, and have never once seen this. I could have missed it on some less frequent countries, but certainly it's not on any major country's entry card.
"Have you ever violated any law related to possessing, using or distributing illegal drugs?"
"Do you have a physical or mental disorder; or are you a drug abuser"
It's also on the customs forms for New Zealand, where you're asked along with questions about any drug paraphernalia you might be bringing in. They seem to be much more concerned about fruit than people slipping through with a bong though. Only country I've ever been set upon by fruit sniffing dogs.
So we were all pulled in an at that point I figured there was no reason to lie. I discussed all the drugs I'd done previously and they stated there was no way for them to prove I was (or was not) smuggling as trace amounts were found in the bag I admitted to carrying them in for previous ski trips.
I stated it was illegal in my country but had no plans to do it in theirs. I was allowed in on the condition I didn't do illegal drugs in NZ... I accepted their terms and didn't do any gear while I was there.
Technically still on Irish soil but within the US customs zone, apparently, and I had thus lied on my form when I said I wasn't tranporting fruit or vegetables into the USA.
I had a banana in my bag. A very ripe one. But the bag was on my shoulder rather than on the floor by my feet so the dog just walked straight past me. There's a hack to remember.
I've been asked to take my bag off my shoulder so the dog could sniff it. I wouldn't recommend this 'hack' — seems too likely to fail.
```(b) You had a physical or mental disorder and a history of behavior associated with the disorder that has posed a threat to your property, safety or welfare or that of others and the behavior is likely to recur or lead to other harmful behavior. Answer "No" if:
(a) You currently have no physical or mental disorders; or
(b) You have or had a physical or mental disorder without associated behavior that may pose or has posed a threat to your property, safety or welfare of that of others; or
(c) You currently have a physical or mental disorder with associated behavior, but that behavior has not posed, does not currently pose nor will pose a threat to your property, safety or welfare or that of others; or
(d) You had a physical or mental disorder with associated behavior that posed a threat to your property, safety or welfare or that of others, but that behavior is unlikely to recur.
I've never seen this at JFK or LAX though.
On the note of that form you linked, apparently they send the results live, a friend of mine for a joke checked "yes" to Question 3, and now her visa application is under review.
You don't get that option. The
first thing that happens to everybody
who is attempting to enter the US and
flagged is that they give you a form
to write down all keys and passwords
you might have, they will then unlock
your phone and attempt to find anything...
You see, even if I'm forced to write down a password, if that password decrypts a 3TB file filled with shit data that LOOKS like it's still encrypted somehow, and then throws errors on further attempts to decrypt, the goal is achieved.
I have old laptops I'm ready to throw in the garbage. I have old, dying hard drives I can partition with nonsense. If that's all I'm carrying, then border patrol can merrily spin their wheels on it, and it will never contain anything valuable, despite appearances, because it is junk and contains junk by design.
For phones? Well, if all I'm carrying is a 1990's candybar phone with a 4 digit pin, and I "unlock" it for someone, and it shows "NO SERVICE" because I never paid money to activate service on that phone, even though it's the only phone I'm carrying, the goal is achieved.
If I'm carrying a trashy 2008 edition smartphone, and I unlock the bootloader, and reflash with a custom ROM that contains 500 garbage contacts with (555) 555-5555 numbers and John Doe as the name, and then encrypt an SD card with a FAT partition that contains a single 4BG encrypted file that's really just random data, or maybe 9000 files with misleading file names, but all contain junk when decrypted, the goal is achieved.
If I jail break an old iPhone C that I bought refurbished, second-hand for $50 and then I activate it's password protection as the number 1234, but never place a SIM card in the slot, and load it with thounsands of random images from the internet, and tons of fake notes that look like Base64 data, and that's the only phone I'm carrying, the goal is achieved.
Your tangent about drugs is an unrelated digression.
Staging junk devices with garbage data, for the purpose of sacrifice to security theater, is fun, easy, and anyone can do it if they've got the next week or two to pack their bags.
No need to waste their expensive devices AND their time.
Retrieving confiscated devices can ruin time as well.
A device you can safely discard, in lieu of bureacratic form signing, waiting-in-line retrieval queues, is also time saved. Now they've confiscated what amounts to used toilet paper.
Did you read TFA?
It's sort of like "teaching the cops a lesson" by loitering around the local school in an ice cream truck implying something might happen.
Like, wow man. It really makes you think.
It makes me think about illegal search and seizure, and how I guess that only matters for special people. It makes me think that, hey, maybe some inalienable rights are actually kind of alienable, depending on who you decide to alienate, right?
They get paid money to do their jobs. Well wowee! That means they're correct in fucking people up arbitrarily right?
Special person on a blacklist? Fuck 'em up! Don't like the looks of those guys? Fuck 'em up! Hate your job and need to take it out on somebody? Fuck 'em up!
Sure, I get that. But where does the black list come from? Can I vote on who gets listed?
You know, I got some people I'd like to fuck up, myself. Would that be okay?
What if I decide to hire someone to fuck someone else up for me? I got some money to pay them. At that point, they'd be doing their job.
Hmmm. Maybe I should pick a career that let's me fuck people up, just so's I can help write those lists. It'd be my job, after all.
Okay, fine. He was the right bad guy to knock down a peg, so send a message. Sent him a message and he got it. Mission accomplished.
The point still remains: hobbling technical carry-ons like the laptop he has, and cloning handhelds to scrape for metadata intel is still a pathetic strategy which would only slow down a half-retarded script kiddie. It's a weak tactic that isn't going to offer real protection at any border, because that's not how smart people with technical skills approach a border.
If that's anyone's idea for how to interdict hacker operations and learn the details of their network, guess what. Consumer grade computers are likely a mere distraction in this scenario, and it's unlikely that a border agent is going to notice a device or technical object intended to survive a border search.
It's not likely that grabbing these sorts of devices stops the people that care about getting certain devices and data across.
Maybe raising the bar and taking ordinary laptops and handhelds off the table to advertise that it's not childsplay to bring general technology across a border might be another message to send non-professional trouble makers and problem children, such as in this case. Either way, to be honest, I think border patrol is out of their element and beyond their depth in this sphere.
Being a hammer, and approaching all border stops as nails, is a strategy for a century ago, when a pipe with a handle was surely a musket.
Not sure about that. After Apple refused to help, the FBI claims to have hacked that iPhone anyway, with a tool developed outside the government.
I think the downvoted parent is relevant in that they mightn't make the effort for a 'normal' person.
Windows Phone user here. I know for a fact the SD card you put in your phone is encrypted and can only be decrypted in the phone itself. I don't know for sure about the internal storage; it's supposed to be encrypted if you use a screen lock on your device but I have no easy way to test that. Regardless, if they can force you to reveal your pin/password you're hosed anyway.
 "Can't be decrypted" assumes, of course, that the government wanting to decrypt it doesn't have an agreement with Microsoft to hand over the private key or otherwise provide access. My understanding is that Microsoft's position lately has been "no warrant, no access" but that could just be lip service. In either case, Windows Phone is a dying platform and anyone security conscious enough to worry about border crossings would hopefully have something more inherently secure anyway.
My personal knowledge starts with 8.1. At least since 8.1 - so practically any relevant phone sold or in use today - the SD card has a hidden encrypted partition which holds apps moved to the card and a public partition for user data (photos, downloads, audio, video etc). This public partition with userdata is not encrypted and can be read at any device.
In the coming W10M update it's possible to encrypt the whole card again, so e.g. photos are protected.
I know that one can be ineligible for an ESTA. For example, if you've made a trip to Iran. However even if ineligible for an ESTA, a person can still go to a US embassy and apply for a regular visa, just like folks in non-ESTA countries.
That'll be the case regardless of whether you've been eligible for ESTAs or had to obtain visas via embassies in the past.
The "banned from ESTA" phrasing had me scratching my head.
Will they wait for it to charge, and THEN inspect it anyway? Or do they let you through.
also, what kind of phone can't be immediately powered up when connected to a charger?
If sufficiently discharged, an iPhone requires about ten to fifteen minutes on a charger to power on. This is true of all models, going back to the original release.