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Let's assume that's true for the sake of argument. Then why stop there? Why not monitor all communications to also catch murderers and rapists and tax cheats? Why have a 4th amendment at all? What makes "terrorism" substantially different than any other crime?

Sure, why not? There are people out there that would happily have their communications monitored in order to catch murderers. Tax cheats, maybe not - no-one lives in fear of a tax cheat.

I'm not saying this is a wise or sensible opinion, but people still hold it - not everyone is just "ill informed".

I disagree. They're ignorant. How could they not be? 3000 people died in the twin towers. Thats nothing. The spying is far scarier. They own us. Totally. No one can escape it. Anyone who intends subversive action can be targetted. They can be approached and manipulated by an agent who knows everything about them. The would-be-subversive can be nudged, sabotaged or flat out blackmailed. There won't be any more rights movements in this environment. At least not "real" ones. They will manufacture contrived movements to subdue us. Anyone who thinks this is right hasn't thought it through; They are wrong.

If you're one of the people holding this opinion, you are wrong.

At the very least you're wrong about them being properly informed.

> Anyone who intends subversive action can be targetted. They can be approached and manipulated by an agent who knows everything about them. The would-be-subversive can be nudged, sabotaged or flat out blackmailed.

You've just highlighted why the average American is scared of terrorists but not the NSA: 3000 people did die on 9/11. There is no evidence of the NSA targeting Americans, or nudging/sabotaging/blackmailing them.

The military could easily storm Washington DC, topple the government, execute every Congressman, impose martial law and announce the start of a new regime under the sole authority of the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. You'd have to be pretty nuts to worry that's actually going to happen.

Also, referring to people who disagree with you as ignorant isn't generally the best way to change their minds.

Our government has done exactly those things. The FBI compelled Martin Luther King Jr to kill himself [1]. You are ignorant. Ignorance is the inescapable reality of a mind that is more finite than the world. It's not an insult unless you're ignorant of that reality. Otherwise it's just the feedback necessary to remedy the relevant ignorance for the problem at hand.

1: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/01/20/martin-luther-king-...

First off, Martin Luthor King didn't kill himself, so you can't really say that the FBI compelled him to do so.

Secondly, you're using the actions taken by a domestic law enforcement agency more than half a century ago as evidence that a foreign intelligence agency is going to blackmail Americans, neglecting the difference in missions between the two agencies, the changes in legal authorities since the 60s, the fact that multiple generations of Americans with differing cultural values have come into and left government service, etc.

Thirdly, calling someone ignorant is an insult. I'd suggest consulting the forum guidelines linked at the bottom of the page.

Calling you anything you wish not to be called is an insult. You just called me ignorant without using the word. Does that make it less insulting? Do the forum guidelines say: don't call people ignorant? I can write "person who doesn't know relevant information" in that case. But soon that too will be an insult. I'm not seeing this avoidance of potentially insulting statements going anywhere useful. It just leads to the continual recycling of words for any idea that could possibly accumulate a negative connotation.

I only gave you one example. There are plenty but I don't think it's important. The motivation is there, for the protection of national security, to manipulate anyone who opposes the status quo. To thwart their efforts.

Martin Luther King Jr was pressured to kill himself. That he resisted this pressure doesn't mean that he wasn't pressured. We can quibble about definitions but I think a charitable reader is more than capable of understanding what I meant.

Anyone who intends subversive action can be targetted

But if you identify with your current government (for whatever rationale), should you not fear subversive action?

Anyone who intends subversive action can be targeted.

Yeah but if I don't intend subversive action then I'm fine, so

No. You're not. You depend on the people that do for all of the rights that you enjoy. You're smart enough to know this. Stop trolling me I can't take it.

Not all opinions are created equal.

This is an important point, but it's worth noting that the relationship between social beliefs and personal benefit exists in countless other domains: company stock price, religious groups, political movements, adoption of a particular FOSS library/stack/protocol, etc. There are few people who have no stake in social ecosystems that are fragile to shifts in perception, and therefore to subject to perverse incentives in managing that perception.


I'm no fan of fiat, but your statement is tautological at best: the fiat currencies that have collapsed, collapsed. Communications tech and electronic fiat make the future anyone's bet.


Tomorrow always different right?

You're some saying it'll be different this time, and the only explanation you give is, 'communications' and 'electronic', and yet plenty of fiat currencies have collapses under such systems. Again, every fiat currency that has ever existed has collapsed, sure there are some new ones that haven't yet but to believe they won't is magical thinking.

Again gold, after thousands of years, is still being hoarded in vaults by every major and minor world power, you really need to review some history.


Counterpoint: physical security largely works this way too.


Well, things work much better in crypto (not proof-of-work, but the "real" one).


At last, we've found the counter-example to Betteridge's Law of Headlines.


There are many counter-examples. The important part isn’t that the answer is “no”, as the Law states, but that the story is tired enough to need a question in its headline in the first place. Andrew Marr’s explanation focusses especially on this aspect of the Law: “A headline with a question mark at the end means, in the vast majority of cases, that the story is tendentious or over-sold. It is often a scare story, or an attempt to elevate some run-of-the-mill piece of reporting into a national controversy and, preferably, a national panic. To a busy journalist hunting for real information a question mark means ‘don’t bother reading this bit’.” He makes a few assumptions, but I think the overall takeaway of “question mark equals clickbait” rings true.


the title has been changed to include a ? when posting here it seems, (or they changed it on theatlantic.com). Nevertheless your comment about ? equalling clickbait really made me think.

Edit: ok I just realized that the summary at the top was used as the title when posting here. I don't feel there is anything wrong with this.




There's a corollary to Betteridge's Law: when someone posts an article with a question mark in the headline to Hacker News, someone will inevitably post a comment to the article that mentions Betteridge's Law.


My hunch is that they've got something brewing that is optimized for a post-SATA, SSD-only world, and they won't release it until that describes most/all of their product line.


F2FS or YAFFS2 would be cool replacements.


I think it's worthwhile to unpack exactly what "owner" means; I don't think it's purely binary. In our current society, I can own land, but still be restricted by HOAs and zoning laws. I can buy a piece of software, but really it still belongs to the creator, who has granted me a license laden with restrictions. And these days, of course, we might own the hardware of our devices, but they're fancy bricks without the software that we certainly do not own. Heck, even the change in your pocket is only owned by you in the sense that there are implicit and explicit contracts with other humans not to take it, and what the repercussions are if they do.

It may be worthwhile to renegotiate these norms and definitions of ownership. In the meantime, I think it behooves all of us to be not be naive, and understand the terms of every "ownership" contract that we sign.


Real Property really does have scarcity-- nobody is making any more Earths right now. Comparing that to to manufactured goods (which have scarcity only in that a finite number of copies are manufactured) or software (which has no scarcity) isn't a very good comparison to my mind.

I disagree with the idea that we need to renegotiate the norms and definitions of ownership. I think we need to require sellers to be clear on whether you're buying or renting.

Rentals are great for a lot of things, but I want to know when I'm renting something. It's very frustrating that I must to heavily scrutinize every business transaction because, seemingly, many things that are sold as purchases are actually rentals. If I'm told I'm purchasing something I would expect it to perform in reasonably the same manner until it physically wears out. I don't want to be required to be tied to any third-party services, updates, "cloud", etc. If I am then it's not a purchase-- it's a rental and needs to be called that.


Totally agreed that the issue is one of customer transparency. "Click Agree to this incomprehensible EULA" is completely unacceptable.


I feel the same way. However, it is interesting that effectively zero Chrome users complain about auto-updates, presumably because they are stable, seamless, and very conservative with user-facing changes.

What I would prefer to see is seamless updates by default, with limitless ability to roll back and freeze updates. Unfortunately, the business case for this is negligible, outside of specific enterprise requirements, and especially complex to implement when considering external factors like APIs and file formats.


You make a good point that when they are seamless it doesn't bother users. When I do come across things that break with chrome's frequent updates it annoys me greatly. One other thing to point out is that we aren't locked into using Chrome so there is less pain from automatic updates. If my smartphone forced me to update automatically for instance this would be a much bigger issue as they lock me into using their software.


What would you consider the line to be? What if he had donated to a organization against interracial marriage? What if he had donated to a Neo-Nazi group? There are many consider causes against same-sex marriage to be equally morally repugnant (to the first one, anyway).


The fact that my rather legitimate and rational and fundamentally American point is being down-voted kind of makes my point. To be honest, I really don't think that no matter how repugnant that I may think one or the other organization or movement may be that it be smothered, banned, or hidden, let alone controlled. Unfortunately, and this is something that many in the liberal mob don't quite comprehend about themselves, is that they are quite a bit more like the very things and people they wish to shame than not. Just because you have the power and dominance to control the issue, doesn't mean you should abuse that power to stifle other people's beliefs and freedom of speech and expression.

What is the difference between lynch-mobbing someone because they don't support {fill in your individual preferences or proclivities} and lynch-mobbing someone because they do support {fill in your individual preferences or proclivities}. There is absolutely nothing different than the perspective. Everyone should have the right to express their opinions, even if you don't like them and they are not your favorite thing (to invoke Louis CK) and then a conversation may lead to a debate and that is how better ideas come about.

The process that society is going through right now is really nothing but a hardening of positions, a "liberal" form of tyranny if you will; the overbearing imposition of a particular perspective upon others. Ironically, that is the very thing the "liberal" side claims is done by the "right/conservatives".

What the current state of civilization in the west shares is an apparent inherent stupidity and irrationality that is quite stunning. Up is right, left is forward, down is blue, billion dollar valuations for what is essentially marketing middle-ware, people maintain their own personal state surveillance dossiers on themselves. It's like the world has gone god damn ape shit mad.


Perhaps the line is somewhere beyond donating money, regardless of cause. Maybe the line is throwing bricks through windows or chasing people with a bat.


I really didn't want to get involved but your argument is specious. If I don't get my hands dirty, but I financially support organisations that do (and lots of right-wing groups are not exactly squeaky clean in that regard), it's all well and good?


Thanks for sharing, all sorts of good finds in this thread. :)

Allegaeon is perhaps my favorite metal band, and their songs frequently revolve around physics, biology, sci-fi, and futurism:

The God Particle: http://youtu.be/hthQvqbyyZg

Accelerated Evolution: http://youtu.be/z2JKv7hGz1Y

Dyson Sphere: http://youtu.be/tk1aLKTmgXU



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