* Posts by Graham Marsden

6803 posts • joined 19 Jan 2007

You want the poor to have more money? Well, doh! Splash the cash

Graham Marsden
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Re: I'll be damned...

> So, what's worse for an economy?

Oh come on, Tim. I was actually enjoying feeling well disposed towards your arguments and then you blow it with a False Dilemma. They're both undesirable, arguing about which is worse doesn't help matters and just distracts from how to fix the problem.

As for DaveDaveDave's (unsurprising) claim, I think you'd agree that it doesn't matter how perfect the economic policies are if most of the money gets siphoned off before it gets to those who need it.

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Graham Marsden
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I'll be damned...

... a TW article I actually agree with and pretty much approve of as the "Cui" who "Bono" are the ones who actually need it!

(Of course you'll have to convince Uncle Rupert and the Daily Mail of the benefits of the idea, which won't be so easy...)

One suggestion, though: Make it optional. There are (it may surprise some readers) some of the better off who would be happy to say "thanks, but I'll forego my share as I've got enough to get by on, so please pass it on to someone/ something else".

PS one minor point: " Venezuela is a shithole", yes, but is that just because of their economic policy or also because of the massive levels of corruption which are endemic in that part of the world?

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Crash Google Chrome with one tiny URL: We cram a probe in this bug

Graham Marsden
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"no reward was awarded as this was deemed to be only a denial-of-service vulnerability"

Well, goog has to save money where it can, doesn't it...

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Doctor Who storms back in fine form with Season 9 opener The Magician's Apprentice

Graham Marsden
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Magician, but no Magic Wand!

Hopefully, therefore, in this series we're not going to have so many stories which end with a wave of the Magic Wand (sorry, Sonic Screwdriver) which were such a cop-out last time around.

This series is definitely looking better, simply for the "Holy Shit" moment that followed the lines "What's your name?" "Davros"!!!

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Huh? Cat-wees-like-a-racehorse study pees on fellow physicists to take Ig Nobel prize

Graham Marsden
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Whatever you call it, 21 plus or minus 13 seconds gives a range of 8 to 34 which is a hell of a wide range to make a claim that the "Duration of urination does not change with body size"

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Ad-blocking super-weapon axed by maker for being TOO effective

Graham Marsden
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WTF?

Meanwhile...

... I've just used AdBlock Plus's other functionality to block the totally unnecessary and annoying jumping "ad-alike" image they stuck on the article's page for not other reason, seemingly, than that they could.

Here's news for you, El Reg, we *KNOW* what they look like, we don't need reminding!

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Internet Doomsday scenario: How the web could suddenly fall apart

Graham Marsden
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Domesday scenario?

Is that where you have a lot of Assessors going around every website and server and TLD finding out what they're worth and how much tax can be levied from them?

1086 and all that...

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Screenshot malware targeted innocent online poker players

Graham Marsden
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As the old saying has it...

... if you sit down at a poker table and you can't tell who is the sucker, it's you!

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We are the Knights who code Ni!

Graham Marsden
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Re: We don't want this

[Grams: Dramatic Chord]

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SPOOKY new Pluto snaps will make the HAIR RISE on the back of your neck

Graham Marsden
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@Rich 11

Dexitroboping, of course!

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Britain's FBI wants 'Five Eyes' cosy hookups with infosec outfits

Graham Marsden
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Big Brother

"This will apparently help the agency reach across jurisdictions, and...

"... avoid inconvenient laws which stop them from spying on their *own* people by getting people in other countries to do it for them, just like the GCHQ and NSA do already."

FTFY!

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Jeremy Corbyn wins Labour leadership election

Graham Marsden
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Re: @codejunky - @Graham Marsden

I see no point in continuing this. You won't accept any argument that doesn't fit in with your beliefs and demand that in order to object to a problem I have to be able to fix it too and bring in irrelevancies to shift the goalposts.

Again I offer someone the opportunity to have the last word.

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Graham Marsden
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Re: @codejunky - @Graham Marsden

> take issue with the private sector for only employing the number needed to do those jobs.

No, codejunky, I take issue with them shaving the quality of care to the bare minimum because they are only interested in maximising their profits, not the effects on their workers or the people their workers are caring for.

It's clear which side your politics are on because you trot out the line that Labour created the deficit, yet fail to mention that George Osborne has borrowed more money in the time that he's been in his job than Labour ever did in their entire time in power! The "deficit" is not the *debt*, it's just the rate at which the debt is increasing. Bravo to the Tory supporting press for conning the people into believing that big lie.

You also still don't seem to understand with your "the government can only destroy jobs" line, that putting the private sector in as a middle man only *increases* costs, it doesn't create value.

> What do we do with the unemployed AND what do we do with those who abuse the system? I

I've already pointed out that those who "abuse the system" are a tiny fraction of the total welfare budget, so I'm not going to do it again.

As for what we "do" with the unemployed, I will again point out (and which you will probably again not accept because it doesn't fit in with your politics) that it's what we *shouldn't* do with them that is more important, which is to penalise them for *being* unemployed as if they were *all* scroungers when most of them are not.

Now try looking at this page from the ONS and see what proportion of the total spending goes on unemployment benefits...

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Graham Marsden
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Re: @codejunky - @Graham Marsden

> It seemed you were suggesting the gov doesnt act like that (employing the few needed to do the job) which is what I said.

No, that's not what I was suggesting.

A friend of mine works as a carer. Due the cuts in local authority budgets, the number of carers employed by the agencies the LA's use has also been cut, so she is having to do home visits that last less than 15 minutes to be able to get through the number of visits she's allocated during the day.

This sometimes means that an elderly person has to make a choice between either being washed or being fed because she doesn't have the time to do both!

Those carers jobs *ARE* needed, but in the quest for savings, fewer and fewer people are being forced to do more and more and, inevitably, the quality of the care suffers.

As for the unemployed, you still fall for the government's constant message that we must "do something" about the "scroungers" despite the fact that they are a tiny fraction of the overall total, yet IDS and his motley crew want us to treat them all the same, so we get the nonsense of people benefits being sanctioned for being late for a Job Centre appointment because they were at a bloody job interview!

> The gov cannot create jobs, only take them away.

That sounds like something that Tim Worstall would argue. I've already pointed out how cuts in Local Authority budgets have resulted in carers being made unemployed. Those are needed jobs, but they have been taken away.

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Graham Marsden
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@codejunky - Re: @Graham Marsden

> Your argument of employing people so they have a job instead of employing those you need for a job is the exact point I was making in the bit you quoted.

That's not my argument, that's your Straw Man. I fully agree that the NHS needs more front line staff and fewer paper pushers and administrators and bean counters etc, but that's not what we've seen from any government for a long while and as Cameron and chums flog off the NHS a piece at a time to their mates, it's not going to change, especially as we see the ludicrous results of policies which mean we have to import Nurses etc and pay them higher rates than those we could have trained at home.

And, no, the public services haven't been perfect by any means and, yes, we need to stop the empire building, but selling said services to private enterprise isn't going to make matters better.

> what do you do with the unemployed and so becoming increasingly unemployable? What do you do with the generations who dont work and those who see it as the better route

First of all you *stop* tarring all of the unemployed with that big brush. Yes, there are a *few* of them who are quite content to scrounge off the state, but they are very much the minority, not the majority. Unfortunately the media both in print and on TV (with unrepresentative nonsense such as Benefits Street) keep pushing the idea into the public's minds that these people are the majority who have to be forced into jobs to stop them stealing our money.

The government has the ability to fix the situation, but they don't *want* to because it suits their ideology to foster this belief, knowing that they can use it to ensure that wages are kept to the bare minimum and that there are sufficient unemployed people that anyone who complains knows that they can easily be replaced.

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Graham Marsden
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@codejunky - Re: @Graham Marsden

> If the gov invest in jobs then they are not real (needed) jobs.

So Nurses and Doctors and other Health Care jobs are not "needed" jobs?

Public services are exactly that, services *for* the public. Someone has to sweep the streets, someone has to collect the rubbish, someone has to maintain the tax service, someone has to run the benefits system, someone has to maintain the roads...

If government stops investing in these and farms them out to private companies, all they are doing is adding a middle-man whose only interest is in what profit they can make between the cost of doing the job and how much they charge the Local Authority or Government for doing that work. They add no value, they just add cost (but, of course, it moves that cost off the Government's books onto someone else's...)

Meanwhile, of course, the private companies are looking at how few people they need to employ to do those jobs, so they trim their workforce, then trim the wages as much as possible because both of those reduce their profit margin, so we end up with *fewer* people employed.

Then, to add insult, you get someone like Iain Duncan Smith forcing the unemployed into doing those jobs, but not even for the minimum wage, but "do this job or you won't get any benefits" and the private contractors go "Whoopee! We get FREE workers from the Government who cost us even less" and sack more people, some of whom may even find themselves being forced to go back and do their old job for subsistence level benefits!

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Graham Marsden
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Re: @TheVogon - Pyhrric victory

Oh dear, LucreLout, I see little point in continuing with this.

You make personal attacks and claims about the "lack of intellectual rigour" of my position, but yours is simply "it's all the fault of the unions" and "the politics of envy" and "I'm alright Jack".

You also somehow think that Blair was Left Wing, but fail to realise that he was only to the "left" of the Tories because they were about as far to the Right as Genghis Khan.

The absolute epitome of the ludicrousness of your arguments is where you say that a Minimum Wage job or a Zero Hours contract allows someone to buy a house!

Please, LucreLout, come and join the rest of us in the real world.

And feel free to have the last word (which will, no doubt, be a smug ad hominem...)

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Graham Marsden
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Re: @LucreLout - Pyhrric victory

No tin foil hat needed. The evidence is in front of your eyes, just avoid the wool that the Murdoch Media is trying to pull over them because Uncle Rupert is bang alongside the Tories on this.

> Jacking up taxes doesn't help the working man get ahead - it keeps him in debt.

And what do Zero Hours contract and Minimum Wage jobs with no prospect of advancement do for him?

> Overly generous welfare make it ever more difficult for him to teach his children about the benefits of hard work and the application of their abilities.

"Overly generous"? You *really* have to stop believing what you read in the papers! And when the message about hard work is "you work all hours of the day and *still* end up with sod all", something has gone seriously wrong.

As for Labour not living within their means, once again we see the Tories trying to flog off what remains of the family silver in the hope that nobody notices they've pissed all of our money away on tax breaks for their mates, laughing up their sleeves as they piously claim "We're all in this together"!

PS I will again remind you that I have no more love for Labour that the Tories, but at least we might see some options other than the failed nonsense of Right Wing Authoritarianism which we've had for the last 35 years.

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Graham Marsden
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FAIL

@AC - Re: @TheVogon - Pyhrric victory

> it's "Screw you, I bothered to work hard at school, and subsequently and have a decent career - so why should I have to subsidise you just because you didn't bother?".

WRONG!

I got O Levels, A Levels and graduated from Portsmouth Polytechnic (as was) in Computing. I now run my own business and do quite nicely, making enough money that I don't have to work all hours of the day and night simply to make ends meet.

I have *no* problem with paying taxes that go to support those on Benefits because I have spent a lot of time where they were and it was only that I found out how to (entirely legally) make the system work *for* me, rather than *against* me that let me start my business in the first place.

I understand that the Benefits System is supposed to be a safety net to catch those who are not as fortunate as me, I also know that only 0.7% of Benefits are claimed fraudulently, which is *less* than the amount of benefits which are *not* claimed but which could be.

I have compassion for people less well off than me, I don't treat them as some sort of underclass who should be punished for not being employed.

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Graham Marsden
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Boffin

Re: @TheVogon - Pyhrric victory

> How can I make you smarter such that you can get a better job?

Err, just off the top of my head, shoot me down if you want to, but, as a wild idea, how about EDUCATING CHILDREN BETTER instead of letting your rich mates buy up schools and turning them into a for-profit Academys which doesn't work even though they get given 60% more money per pupil that local authority schools and where there have been allegations of fraud!

Oh, but of course, that's not a failure of the schools, is it? As you say "How can I make you educate yourself better?" since clearly it's the pupils' fault for not "educating themselves better"...

> How can I make you work harder?

How about paying people a decent rate for the job they're doing, rather than giving them a pittance. How about rewarding them with bonuses for doing their job well? It seems to work so well for the people at the top of the pile, why not try it for those who are actually *making* the money?

> Yet again we see the attitude of "I'm not successful, wealthy, or happy, so I don't want anyone else to be". Or, to give it the name by which it is best know, socialist spite & envy.

BUZZ! Oops, wrong again. I have no problem with people being successful, wealthy or happy, but, unlike you, I think that society works better when the rewards are spread around, rather than concentrated in the hands of a greedy few who think they're entitled(!) to live off the sweat of others' brows. (Ironic, isn't it? Same words, different meaning...)

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Graham Marsden
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Facepalm

@LucreLout - Re: Pyhrric victory

> the Conservatives hate the poor enough to want to make them rich

Howls of derisive laughter, Bruce!

The last thing that the Tories want is for people to have enough money to be able to pick and choose jobs, that's why their aim is to keep sufficient people unemployed (and, if possible, sanctioned), so they have a large supply of obedient serfs who are so desperate for any work that they'll take whatever jobs are on offer for a pittance.

> there will be no North Sea Oil to bail us out this time.

If Maggie had any sense, she would have *invested* the money from North Sea Oil, instead of using it (and flogging off nationalised industries to her rich friends) to bribe people into electing her again.

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Graham Marsden
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Re: @TheVogon - Pyhrric victory

> Like the majorty of us that can afford to support ourselves without scrounging benefits off the back of others

Let me guess, you're not on a Minimum Wage job, let alone a Zero Hours contract.

Again we see the "Screw you, I'm alright Jack!" attitude.

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Graham Marsden
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Re: Labour... now unelectable

You know, I *keep* seeing this "Labour is now unelectable" line being trotted out and I have to wonder just *who* is trying to convince *whom*.

Because it seems to me that it is actually coming from the Right Wing (be it the Right of Labour or from the Tories or their supporters and tame media) who are desperately trying to convince *themselves* that people haven't finally wised up to the bullshit which is Austerity and aren't going to kick out its proponents at the next election when they finally get tired of being screwed over whilst their feudal masters sit in their mansions and castles sipping champagne.

They double down on their bets by chucking in claims about how it will all go on floor moppers and letting in the "hordes" on our borders and so on and so forth because, as the old saying has it, if you throw enough mud, at least some of it should stick...

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Graham Marsden
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Facepalm

Re: @TheVogon - Pyhrric victory

Gosh, I *wonder* which political colours Mr AlbertH has nailed to his mast...

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Graham Marsden
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Facepalm

Re: Look who's back

Whoops...

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Graham Marsden
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@x 7 - Re: Pyhrric victory

> If anything its likely to lead to a resurgent labour party while people just listen to the sound bites and ignore the polices

Wow! That's *so* different from what's happening with the Tories now...

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Graham Marsden
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WTF?

@TheVogon - Re: Pyhrric victory

> The last budget was a great example of moderate conservatism

Are you serious? It was a great example of how to fuck over the ordinary people whilst convincing them that it was actually an improvement for them!

Telling people that the Tories are bringing in the Living Wage was really clever, trouble is, it's total bullshit. Not only will that not happen until 2020, by the time we get to 2020, it will *still* be below the London Living Wage *today*! And, at the same time, he's slashing tax credits and in work meaning people will end up worse off.

In other news: Big Brother has raised the chocolate ration to twenty grammes a week...

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Graham Marsden
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Re: @DaveDaveDave - So this is what the party of No Platform has become...

> How about posting something that actually addresses the accusations made?

Great idea, DaveDaveDave: You start...

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Graham Marsden
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WTF?

@DaveDaveDave - Re: So this is what the party of No Platform has become...

> it's public knowledge that has been printed in multiple national newspapers.

ORLY?

The Guardian

The Independent

The Telegraph

The Spectator for gods' sake! not exactly a Corbyn supporting publication...

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All in all, it's just another hit in the stalls: Roger Waters The Wall

Graham Marsden
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Two memories...

1) The first time I saw the film, after it finished I just sat there for about five minutes, absolutely stunned at the intensity of it.

2) When I was in the 6th form, we were forbidden to play "Another Brick in the Wall". Naturally we played it frequently until Mr Parker, Head of the 6th Form, walked in to the Common Room one break time at the perfectly wrong moment and demanded we "Turn that off now!" As one, virtually the entire room, in time with the song, chorused "Hey, Teacher! Leave us kids alone!" :-)

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SOHO solar scope spies 3000th 'sungrazer' comet

Graham Marsden
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Re: Worachate Boonplod?

I was also thinking of Douglas Adams, but wondering if they'd spotted Disaster Area's black stunt ship...

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Obama edges toward full support for encryption – but does he understand what that means?

Graham Marsden
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Meh

"A leaked memo"

Or maybe a trial balloon which was deliberately released to see how people would react to the various options before they decide their policy will be...

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Ahmed's clock wasn't a bomb, but it blew up the 'net and Zuckerberg, Obama want to meet him

Graham Marsden
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Facepalm

Or the coach that was stopped on the M6 because someone was having a vape...

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Graham Marsden
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Facepalm

@TidySweep

Mohammed and its various spellings is the most common name in the world with an estimated 150 million plus men and boys who have that name.

Are you saying that they're *all* potential terrorists? What about all those men and boys called Timothy?

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US librarians defy cops, Feds – and switch on their Tor exit node

Graham Marsden
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Flame

What about all those books?

They can give people dangerous ideas! They can be used to look up chemical formulas to make explosives! They can promote all sorts of radicalism!

Far better to burn them all!

(Excuse me, the nurse is here with my medicine...)

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Chipzilla has its knockers … and now they’re cool in this venting sports bra

Graham Marsden
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The MemoryMirror

"She'd seen a trick fitted for a suit once, a guy who took her to a Holiday Inn. The suit place was off the hotel lobby, and he stood in there in his underwear, crosshatched with lines of blue light, and watched himself on three big screens. On the screens, you couldn't see the blue lines, because he was wearing a different suit in each image. And Mona had to bite her tongue to keep from laughing, because the system had a cosmetic program that made him look different on the screens, stretched his face a little and made his chin stronger, and he didn't seem to notice."

- William Gibson - Mona Lisa Overdrive (1988)

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Brown kid with Arab name arrested for bringing home-made clock to school

Graham Marsden
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He's just been invited to the White House...!

"Cool clock, Ahmed. Want to bring it to the White House? We should inspire more kids like you to like science. It's what makes America great."

https://twitter.com/POTUS/status/644193755814342656

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'To read this page, please turn off your ad blocker...'

Graham Marsden
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Boffin

"YouTube viewers using AdBlock Plus had to sit through the full ad"

Or they hit "mute" on the speakers and checked e-mails or browsed another tab until the ad had finished and *then* watched the video...

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Twitter sued for 'reading' private direct messages

Graham Marsden
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Thumb Down

Re: Read the effin' TOS

TOS != The Law.

Just because it says "By using this service you agree to let us do all this", does *NOT* make it legal.

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Euro Commission wants to pick your brains on telcos and net access

Graham Marsden
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Re: "Take this opportunity to have your say on Europe's digital future..."

Actually, AC, I *have* contributed.

I was one of the many motorcyclists who objected to the EU's plans to prevent bikers "modifying" their machines by effectively locking down everything from the airbox to the rear sprocket and saying that anything in between could only be touched by an authorised garage, meaning we wouldn't even be able to change our own oil!

We got *some* of those plans stopped, but, thanks to extensive (or perhaps "expensive") lobbying by the ABS industry, all new bikes above 125cc are going to have to have mandatory "always on" ABS included by 2020, despite the fact that there are circumstances and certain bikes (eg those designed for off-road use) where ABS would actually be detrimental.

So, no, I'm not speaking out ignorance, I'm speaking from experience.

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Graham Marsden
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Devil

"Take this opportunity to have your say on Europe's digital future..."

"... which we will then ignore in favour of whichever industry lobbying group has offered us the most..."

FTFY!

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KREMLIN: Google is ABUSING ITSELF, misusing its mighty market position

Graham Marsden
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WTF?

My Irony Detector...

... has just packed its bags and gone on holiday...

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What should we do with this chunk of dead air? Ofcom wants to know

Graham Marsden
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Facepalm

Re: re. Three Cows

Obviously that pic is for anyone who doesn't know what a cow looks like...

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Did GCHQ illegally spy on you? Now you can find out – from this page

Graham Marsden
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Black Helicopters

Are GCHQ spying on me...?

... We are now!

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USA, China find common cyber-enemy within

Graham Marsden
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Meh

Re: And

> What are the laws of the land?

Probably the same as in the Good Ol' US of A: If you're doing it, it's bad. If we're doing it, that's ok...

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Vanished global warming may not return – UK Met Office

Graham Marsden
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Alert

Re: Article based on report from a government agency

Is anything going to prevent Lewis Page from indulging his favourite activity ?

Don't think so.

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Australian opposition wants laws to protect private smut

Graham Marsden
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Boffin

Educate, don't legislate!

Whilst Revenge Porn is a contemptible thing, as usual we see the default reaction of the politicians "Something Must Be Done!" so they pass a stupid law which will end up criminalising innocent people or being used for "Revenge Revenge Porn" charges when someone agrees to let their partner post pics of them, but when it comes to a divorce or custody battle, somehow they didn't consent after all.

Far better to teach people (and especially kids, given the new habit of sexting) that once a picture is out there is cannot be withdrawn, so make *really* sure that you actually want to have that picture taken in the first place and if someone tries to coerce you to do it, tell them to get lost until they grow up a bit.

PS I saw a lovely pic a little while ago that went:

1980s: Here's a mix tape of your favourite music I made for you

2000s: Here's a mix CD of your favourite music I made for you

2015: Here's a picture of my dick!

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Vodafone 'fesses up to hack of journalist's phone, denies 'improper behaviour'

Graham Marsden
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Holmes

Yes, there was a privacy breach...

... but nobody was responsible and nobody's been punished.

However Lessons Have Been Learned...

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PRIMITIVE TOOLS found near MICROSOFT headquarters

Graham Marsden
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Coat

Meanwhile...

... Ug is working on developing the iSpear which looks really great with its rounded corners, but if it breaks, you can't fix it yourself.

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Doctor Who returns to our screens next week – so, WHO is the worst Time Lord of them all?

Graham Marsden
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Re: Having met two of them...

McCoy wasn't the worst, he was just saddled with the worst assistant, Bonnie Langford. He actually got some very good (and very dark) storylines, but with lousy scripts.

It was a shame The Happiness Patrol was spoiled by the ridiculous Bertie Bassett-alike when there were nice references to the Paranoia RPG in it :-(

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