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* Posts by KrisMac

107 posts • joined 21 Jul 2010

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NSA mass spying reform KILLED by US Senators

KrisMac

@Rick Brashe Re: Do I care enough to comment???

Passive aggressive? Possibly - but also perhaps you might concede that I could be more interested in the conversation surrounding the event rather than the event itself?

None of these things occur in a vacuum, and the inability of the USA to reign in its rapidly emerging police state is of concern to the whole world. I happen to live in a Westernised, developed economy in a relatively peaceful part of the world, (Australia), and for much of that I have to thank the past good works, intentions and invention of the United States. And I AM very grateful for all that the US has done for this part of the globe.

But being grateful for past actions does not mean that I have to like what I see happening to the US today - nor the creeping osmosis effect of that police state being inserted into my own country by local politicians who appear to act in 'monkey see, monkey do' lockstep with the way things are progressing Stateside...

So, NO: Not interested in this vote since it has achieved nothing of substance, but critically interested in the overall situation.

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KrisMac

Re: Do I care enough to comment???

I agree, Ms. Tuchman's thesis that Governments quite frequently take actions that are against their best interests is rather on the money in the case of the NSA dragnet spying. In effect, taking that action has lead directly to an increased level of paranoia, distrust of American intentions and reliance on encryption amongst the rest of the world which only serves to make the US security intelligence mission harder to achieve - so certainly self defeating in the long run.

Irrespective of the relative merits of the legislation that was voted down, (other posters have noted that it was really just a piece of political theatre designed to entrench the status quo rather than true reform), I feel this latest vote also aptly demonstrates Group Think in action. From an outsiders perspective, (and I do understand the weakness of such a perspective in the lack of details), there appears to me to be very little to differentiate the two sides of American politics. Both sides effectively reinforce and continue the policies of the other with what appears to be very little reference to any mandate they each might receive from 'the people'.

It seems to me that the Vision of '..by the People, for the People..' put forward by the USA's Founding Fathers is these days mostly adhered to only by exception...

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KrisMac

Re: Do I care enough to comment???

You may be right for all I know - as an outsider I only see the effects of ill-advised American policies such as the global NSA data dragnet, not the intricacies of how they are enacted. That policy has now been in-place for what, over a decade now? (That we know of?) And if I am not mistaken was created by a Republican, and then only strengthened by a Democrat?

What makes you feel that the next Republican in the seat will do anything different?

Also, it seems to me that no matter who is ensconced, (I won't presume to use your pejorative), within the Whitehouse, the 'few out-of-control bureaucrats' who seem to be taking the blame for enforcing those policies will still be there - doing precisely what they are doing right now...

Changing the figurehead at the pinnacle of power rarely if ever does anything to alter the corruption within the edifice upon which that power is based... it is only the fact that Americans in general seem to be willing to turn a blind eye to that corruption that allows it to continue - that and the willingness of a seeming majority of Americans to sell their Freedoms in return for Security... something which I believe one of your early Presidents commented on as undesirable??

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KrisMac

Re: Do I care enough to comment???

Those 300,000,000+ have not done enough - and are continuing to not do enough - to bring those few out-of-control bureaucrats to heel.... complaining about the effects of your apathy on yourself does not win you an awful lot of sympathy from those outside of your cosy walled garden who are also impacted directly by the effects of your apathy...

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KrisMac

Do I care enough to comment???

not much.. Americans get the government they deserve... they happily shit all over the rest of us anyway by assuming that through self-professed "American Exceptionalism" they can claim license to employ unrestrained surveillance wherever the hell they like - so long as its not in their own back yard...

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BOUNCY BOUNCY: Comet probot Philae landed TWICE

KrisMac

Re: What is the pull of gravity of that rock?

you forgot Yummyness (or does that epithet only apply to attractive soccer mums in SUV's?) :-)

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KrisMac

What is the pull of gravity of that rock?

Given that the comet itself isn't big enough to pull itself into a ball I would assume the gravity is very low? So the (second) landing would have been potentially quite slow and soft?

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Consumer group SLAMS NASA for letting Google rent $1bn 'playground'

KrisMac

Re: 60 year lease - What makes you think...

.. that Google didn't pay the lease in cash from their chump change so that they can use the prepaid expenses as an ongoing tax deduction for the next 60 years?

http://www.plantemoran.com/perspectives/articles/2012/Pages/irs-revenue-ruling-2012-1-clarifies-the-tax-deduction-of-certain-prepaid-expenses.aspx

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GOD particle MAY NOT BE GOD particle: Scientists in shock claim

KrisMac

Thats a nice piece of research you have there... pity if something should happen to it...

My research indicates that this latest Danish research is not actual research at all, but is actually 'techni-research' composed of 'techni-data' that, (collectively), mimic the behaviour of real research in every way such that it is indistinguishable from real research.

I therefore submit that I should be paid umpteen quintillion dollars in order to refine my own research so that I can fully identify the nature of this 'techni-research' in order to be able to distinguish between 'techni-' and 'real' research...

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AMD pays new CEO $150K LESS than her male predecessor

KrisMac

Given AMD's annoument of layoffs and losses..

...I don't think there is going to be as much of a business to manage for the new incumbent. They could try to argue that the salary reflects the troubled times... Although you could just as easily argue that the difficulties ahead are going to deserve better compensation since they will require very real business acumen to deal with...

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That's no – actually it is: DEATH STAR MOON 'could be full of life-friendly water'

KrisMac

The fourth possibility??

...residual vibration from whatever smacked the planet hard enough to leave the 'Death Star' crater... (heavy bits of which might still be embedded under the surface)

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Can do better: Tech industry report on Australia's tech curriculum

KrisMac

Not entirely sure this is all as bad as is being made out...

While I would like to see computation being taught earlier, I tend to agree that numeracy must come first. Discrete mathematics is the absolute foundation of our industry, which probably comes as a surprise to those who think that the only thing you need to know to be successful in IT these days is how to search Google or mash up a web site...

To my way of thinking it is better to do a few things really well than to be mediocre across the board. Lets get the kids to the point of understanding what they are reading, and able to perform the most basic mathematical calculations without the need for a calculator to pave the way for more advanced studies in cryptography, algorithm development and algebra.

Jumping in with both feet at primary school might suit the 1% of kids destined for Mensa, but the basic numeracy skills of the average Australian High School student are woefully inadequate at best and leave me worrying for our economic future..

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'Stop dissing Google or quit': OK, I quit, says Code Club co-founder

KrisMac

Re: So basically...

/Me *Points Up to the Register Banner at the top of the page*

See that motto? Biting the hand is precisely what is required more often than not. Unquestioned obedience to authority figures leads to only one destination.

Noblesse oblige actually cuts two ways - it's not just about showering largesse around and basking in reflected glory - there is a certain humility expected as well. Unfortunately big corporate hasn't yet learned that full implications of the role they have stepped into since the demise of the autocracies.

The dictionary of the French Academy, (don't start - that's another nasty discussion entirely), puts it this way: "Whoever claims to be noble must conduct himself nobly". Accepting that, then it is up to every one of the new nobility's followers to remind their overlords when they are slipping below that high threshold.

This lady has done absolutely the right thing, and the rest of her Board should do the same...

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LOHAN Kickstarter bid IS GO: Back our Vulture 2 spaceplane launch

KrisMac

Another Excuse for an elReg Launch Party?

I was lucky enough to get to the Aussie Register Launch Party and meet the Vulture South crew.... ('nuff said, headache lasted the weekend...)

Now that I'm standing by the letter box eagerly awaiting my LOHAN Pint Pot I'm thinking that getting like-minded individuals into a bar with their respective LOHAN Loot in tow to watch the launch live and toast the accent might be an entirely different, (but appropriate) excuse for a Launch Event all on its own?

Oh bugger... now I will have to watch the mailbox for my invitation to a party as well.... hadn't thought of that...

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TRANSMUTATION claims US LENR company

KrisMac

SHT is commonly used in SMS's

to mean SHiT... I guess prescience happens...

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Poll: Australians hate government data retention plan

KrisMac

Metadata == Data

The problem space is entirely defined by two questions:

* Who is using it?

* What are they using it for?

As soon as Metadata becomes a source of Information in its own right, rather than being a description of data located separately, then it becomes data in and of itself..

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Blighty in SPAAAACE: Brit-built satellite films the Earth

KrisMac
Joke

So that's what causes...

..the squiggly lines in the signal interference noise pattern...

*No worries: I'm just jealous that the Overlords won't get to see my name up there :-( *

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LOHAN acquires aircraft arboreal avoidance algorithm acronyms

KrisMac

Oh! My GAWD!!

Operational

Heuristics

Magnetically

Yielding

Ground to

Avert

Woody

Disaster

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Gartner's Special Report: Should you believe the hype?

KrisMac

Sorry Mr Kunert - You lost me at...

...'Gartner's Special..'

Gartner may indeed be 'Special' but nothing they have ever produced deserves that title..

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Lawsuit claims SpaceX laid off hundreds without proper notice, pay

KrisMac

My Guess? Stack Ranking in action...

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vitality_curve

Many organisations have tried to energise their workforces through use of stack ranking performance metrics - all have failed eventually. One of the prime boosters of this concept was Microsoft, who only finally gave it up late last year: http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/SB10001424052702303460004579193951987616572

Stack ranking forces the concept of large scale dismissals on an annual basis because it presumes that there will always be a percentage of 'under performers' in any population of employees. In theory culling the drones out leaves space into which higher performing individuals can be employed improving the organisation incrementally over time. On the face of it that argument might not seem far wrong, especially if one looks at government departments where if you sacked all the under performers you might get down to the one person actually doing anything, (likely the cleaner).

But it is too simplistic, and fails horribly in practice since it creates an environment where internal competition, back-stabbing and brown nosing become the only means of keeping a job - performance suffers and the organisation either wakes up to itself, (have to give Microsoft small kudos for that even if it was very late), or it implodes.

If SpaceX is using Stack Ranking then it is a business in which I for one would not want to work...

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Help Australia's PM and attorney-general to define metadata

KrisMac

Voice or No Voice - not much has changed...

"after all, it is the leaders of the country who determine the policy and it is always a simple matter to drag the people along, whether it is a democracy, or a fascist dictatorship, or a parliament, or a communist dictatorship. Voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked,and denounce the peacemakers for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same in any country"

Hermann Goering - Nuremberg Trial 1945: http://quotes.liberty-tree.ca/quote_blog/Hermann.Goering.Quote.65D2

I guess this guy might have been able to help define metadata for the new guard in Canberra...

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The Register is HIRING technology hacks for the WORLD

KrisMac

We need a new El Reg Unit of Measure

RFC: 04082014 EL Reg Journalist Productivity Gauge

Productive Output of a Novice El Reg Journo == 3 Beers?

Productive Output of an Experienced El Reg Journo == 12 Beers and a couple of Whiskey Chasers?

*This RFC for Unit of Measure open for Public Comment for 24hrs following date of issue.

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Kiwi satellite earth station recycled – as radio telescope

KrisMac

So pleased to see this!

I was lucky enough to get a tour of the Warkworth station as a teenager - it was still an (almost brand new!) operational earth station at the time and I remember the chills up my spine when one of the technicians flipped a switch and someone's phone conversation started coming through the control room loudspeaker... I thought at the time it was both spooky and kind of cool - half a lifetime and an Edward Snowden event later it would just be creepy..

It is fantastic to see such an iconic piece of New Zealand's technological heritage being repurposed for worthwhile science - it would have been a true shame if the gas axes had come out for it...

*Edit: Spelling

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FREE PARTY for TEN lucky Australian Reg readers

KrisMac

Party Party Party

A REGISTER Party in Oz?

I reckon it must be because

We'd all like to think

That we know how to drink

And our business aint really that stink

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Lower prices are BAD FOR CONSUMERS, says Turnbull

KrisMac

We need a new elReg Unit of Measure?

"...somewhere between unusual and unprecedented..."

All I can suggest is that this new Unit of Measure needs to reference the length of the snouts in the trough somehow....

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NASA: ALIENS and NEW EARTHS will be ours inside 20 years

KrisMac
Joke

"..If we ever wish to live on another planet, we should first send our bacteria, and give them a few hundred million years to get things set up for us..."

So you are suggesting that our new alien overlords might be only a few years away from arrival after having sent their bacteria on ahead a few hundred millenia ago to prepare the planet for them??

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Surprise! NSA's first ever 'transparency' 'report' is anything but

KrisMac

Re: Perfect transparency

We know we are in trouble when transmissions from amanfromMars are more transparent and coherent than those of the NSA....

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Information Technology Supplier Advocate job abolished

KrisMac

Umm... just another QUANGO?

Is it possible that since the "CEO of the Council of Small Business Organisations of Australia (COSBOA), was unaware of the position's existence" it wasn't actually having any effect?

If the people meant to benefit from the role dont know anything about it, it speaks volumes for what was actually happening behind the scenes... The road to hell being paved with good intentions and all that...

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When will Microsoft next run out of US IPv4 addresses for Azure?

KrisMac

..it probably could not foresee the need for quite as many addresses..

"640K ought to be enough for anybody."

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Is it THE END OF BIG DATA? Quarta Horribilis for high-end storage

KrisMac

I had to laugh at The Reg's choice of links on the right of this article:

"HP: You know what's hot right now? Cloud* storage "

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2014/05/25/hp_thinks_cold_storage_is_hot/

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Rich bitch sorority girls actually more likely to put out than low-class 'sluts': Study

KrisMac

"The label stuck on the poorer girls appears to stick because the posh girls have the influence to make their voice heard. The futility of those without a voice trying to say anything otherwise, whether in defence of themselves of offence in attempting to disclose the hypocrisy, is guaranteed by their lack of influence."

Quite right. Another prime example would be Edward Snowden versus the United States Government. The only reason Mr Snowden has been able to get his voice heard at all was by escaping from the immediate sphere of influence of those who would suppress his message...

And look at all the slut-shaming epithets that are being tossed in his direction in order to diminish him in the eyes of his potential audience?

*Edit: Typo's

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New IPCC report: 8 ways climate change will throw world INTO PERIL

KrisMac

..everyone can identify with slower maturation of wine grapes as an issue worth tackling! ..

Not really... I've always found the Late Harvest Rieslings from Western Australia's Southern Coastal areas, (Denmark + Mount Barker particularly), to be the most delicious and refreshing of all the great tipples... if there's more of it, all the better :-)

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NSW government gets into the smartphone case business

KrisMac

Re: *The "Opal" name is consciously modelled on London's "Oyster Card".

ermmmmm.... 'cos you gets Opal's from Oysters perhaps?

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National Broadband Network (NBN)

KrisMac

Re: National Broadband Network (NBN)

Athough the NBN is (maybe) going to have an impact on internet bandwidth, (depending on the level of idiocy built into the Plans that the vendors eventually decide to push on us), the rollout is defiitely having an impact on my commercial ISDN contracts around the country.

Telstra don't seem to have an actual Plan B for what to do when they have to hand over the copper once a zone has been designated as an NBN area, but I have been supplied with a list of dates by my account executive indicating that 'something' needs to happen at about half of my sites around the country over the next year or so... I'm not that worried about what the 'something' might be so long as it works and I don't lose connectivity anywhere...

Seems like a disaster waiting to happen to me...

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HOLD THE PHONE, NSA! Judge bans 'Orwellian' US cellphone records slurp

KrisMac

Months might not be far wrong....

It took Hitler less than two months following the burning of the Reichstag to get the Enabling Act passed by the legislature - thereby effectively ending the Weimar Republic and installing himself as Dictator...

I wonder what sort of shenanigans the US Legislature might get up to in order to sidestep this decision? After all having to stop spying on people and destroy all that potentially incriminating, (read intimidating), 'evidence' must constitute an enormous threat to US National Secuirty in some people's eyes - surely a bigger threat than the burning down of a single building in Berlin all those years ago....

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Astroboffins spot HOT, YOUNG GIANT where she doesn't belong

KrisMac

..possibly a silly question..

...but given the system is 'only' @18 million years old, is it not possible that it is a binary system that is still in the process of forming? The exo-plant could be a proto brown dwarf that is still accreting material and coud light up once it gains sifficient mass?

- assuming there is any quantity of gas still available in the vacinity for it to hoover up of course...

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Sceptic-bait E-Cat COLD FUSION generator goes on sale for $US1.5m

KrisMac

A better than Stellar solution???

If fusion of nickel (atomic weight 28) with hydrogen to produce copper (atomic weight 29) is so energy efficient....

...wouldn't you think that natural physics would have equipped STARS with the capability of extending their lives by doing just that, instead of choking at the iron (atomic weight 26) production stage and exploding into quintillions of teensy weensy bits????

I can almost see the mushroom clouds on the horizon now.....

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Sysadmin job ad: 'If you don’t mind really bad work-life balance, this is for you'

KrisMac

..I don't need to apply..

...that sounds like that job I'm being paid to do right now!! My current employers just weren't quite so honest about it in the PD though :-(

I absolutely commend these guys for recognising exactly how tough a gig it is to be that person "at the epicentre of all". Whoever gets the job will have no excuses that they weren't warned about hat they would be walking into, I just hope they have the balls to ask to be paid what the role is truly worth...

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PC market: ABANDON HOPE all ye who enter here

KrisMac

...then causalities are expected...

I'll raise your Causality with my Entropy and slowly grind your PC Market to dust.....

Its in the nature of Time and Space to do that to you......

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Angela Merkel's phone was being listened in on by FIVE foreign powers

KrisMac

Re: The real question here is

So your saying that her phone was completely buggered then?

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Fiery bits of Euro satellite to rain down on Earth this weekend

KrisMac

Ohhhh, The Irony...

Brought low by the very gravity it mapped in such extreme detail... curiosity and cat?

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NSA boss Alexander and deputy to take a hike next year

KrisMac

What constitutes a Contractor??

Given their fairly central supply side roles in the PRISM system - and the fact that they are bound into those roles by what appears to be a Government contract that is fully enforceable in Law, (as evidenced by the ongoing appeals to SCOTUS by Google to repudiate (just) the gag-order clauses) - I would venture to suggest that Microsoft, Google and Apple could properly be described as among the largest US Defence Contractors out there...

They may not, (to our knowledge), be being paid for their services, but they are nonetheless Contractors complicit in the 'service delivery' for all that...

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Hypersonic MEGA METEOR pulled from lake, then Russians drop it

KrisMac

"..pressure of reentry. Its...'

I'm being (somewhat) tounge in cheek here, but why do we call it "re-entry" for a bit of rock that (or an alien for that matter) that has never visited our bigger bit of rock before (presumably)... surely it would simply be "atmospheric entry"??

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Obama Zucker-punched: 'NSA PR bungle whacked public trust in web giants'

KrisMac

Zuck in dc sucking up for more h1b's - and you are surprised WHY exactly?

Zuck is not in the business of championing the public good - he is in the business of exploitation! Whether that means exploiting the personal data of millions, (billions?) of people's personal information or the sweated labour of a few thousand underpaid but extremely gifted programmers from what we euphemistically refer the third world - (at label I find increasingly redundant given the fact that the worlds economies are increasingly centred on those locales).

Zuck does not care where the filthy lucre comes from, so long as it keeps rolling in....

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THE TRUTH about beaver arse milk in your cakes: There's nothing vanilla about vanilla

KrisMac

Re: Come on

No, No, No! The most expensive perfumes use whale snot: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ambergris

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Leaked docs: NSA 'Follow the money' team slurped BANK records, CREDIT CARD data

KrisMac

Re: More proof

One of the reasons for Bin Laden's less than stellar bank balance at the end is that he spent nearly all of his inheritance personally financing and funding the development of the goat farming community in Afghanistan... ever wonder why go many of the goat farmers in that part of the world still worship the ground he walked on? Ever consider how many goats $25 Million will buy?

That is perhaps the crux of the fundamental error the US administration made in Afghanistan - the funds that poured into the country after the invasion went to the beurocrats, brown-nosers and warlords in Kabul, not the goat farmers in arse-end-of-nowhere...

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Mighty multi-scope snaps stunning STARBIRTH image

KrisMac
Mushroom

I for one will welcome...

"...revealed two jets of materials, one aimed at Earth .."

... our high-energy radioactive overlords... at least the politicains will fry right along with the rest of us....

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US taxmen told to hush up shadowy drug squad unit laundering NSA intel

KrisMac
Facepalm

Bzzzzzrttttt - Wrong!!

Now there is real impetus for the DOJ to pressure anyone delivering secure email to shut down:

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2013/08/09/silent_circle_shutters_email_service/

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2013/08/08/lavabit_shuts_down/

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Gotcha: Oz Greens squeeze web snoop law confession

KrisMac

Re: Democracy, Transparency and Freedom of Information.

"..How do you change the system when the two parties are different sides of the same coin?.."

Simple: Vote for every Independant on the list irrespective of thier policies (or lack of them) and make the Incumbents earn their place at trough....

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Security audit finds dev OUTSOURCED his JOB to China to goof off at work

KrisMac
Devil

The only reason anyone is angry at Bob...

... is that they didn't think of it first....

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