* Posts by Velv

2046 posts • joined 21 Jan 2010

Just delete the internet – pr0n-blocking legislation receives Royal Assent

Velv
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Facepalm

OK, so it's a stupid unworkable idea. But that's not the point.

The point is that the government can say "we've put in place legislation to block minors from viewing online pornography in the UK". The Sun and The Daily Fail can then get off their high horse.

It's about perception, not about actually doing anything useful.

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UK.gov throws hissy fit after Twitter chokes off snoop firm's access

Velv
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Black Helicopters

We are happy to make clear that Dataminr is not the firm that had its access to Twitter's firehose cut off.

So Dataminr are still spying on the public then?

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High Court hands Lauri Love permission to appeal extradition to US

Velv
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Boffin

Re: UK law ought to apply, surely?

It is an unfortunate fact about international borders and the easy with which they are crossed in cyberspace. It is not only ambiguous where the crime took place, the crime was committed in more than one place.

Let's take a physical example to the extreme. If an american citizen standing on the Russian side of the Russia/China border shoots dead an Australian citizen standing on the Chinese side, in which country should the trial take place. Russia or China. Or the US, since it could be claimed the US citizen would receive unfair treatment in either Russia or China. Or Australia, as it was their citizen that was attacked.

There is no right answer, and the lawyers are going to continue to make a fortune for decades to come.

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FYI – There's a legal storm brewing in Cali that threatens to destroy online free speech

Velv
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Facepalm

Default judgements should rarely if ever be used as the basis of a precedent.

Clearly the merits of the case haven't been reviewed by the court so how can they be relied on in the future.

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Cuffing Assange a 'priority' for the USA says attorney-general

Velv
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FAIL

Re: Deportation

If he'd gone to Sweden when asked and had been found guilty, he would probably be out and free by now, and beyond the easy legal grab of the Merkins.

But no, his publicity is more important than the truth.

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Apple's zippy silicon leaves Android rivals choking on dust

Velv
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Re: It's just a shame

...but it's a bit like putting a Ferrari engine in a Mini Metro.

What's so wrong with a Ferrari engine in a metro? Pisses off the boy racers when you leave them at the lights, and so rarely make it out of town that the handling makes little difference.

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Data trashed? When RPO 0 isn't enough

Velv
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Boffin

Third site...

And if you want to do this properly, you're going to have a fourth site.

Like it or not, maintenance must be done at some point. And while you're conducting maintenance that element of your service is offline and your protection is at risk. One incident elsewhere during maintenance and you've potentially lost data.

As said, to really do this properly is expensive. Alternatively the business need to sign off that there are failure scenarios they are not protected against. You'd be amazed what they will sign off when you put a £50,000,000 bill in front of them. "oh, if that's the cost, I guess we can risk losing 15 minutes of data"

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Blighty's £1.2bn space industry could lend itself to tourism – report

Velv
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Boffin

Re: tourist attractions?

Actually you'd be surprised how many companies in the UK in the space industry are not aligned to defence.

Space is pretty much well understood from a defensive perspective, but commercial and non-defence research are now finding the opportunities and benefits and the funding to leverage it. Cube Sat's in particular are now relatively cheap.

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Broadband providers almost double prices after deals end

Velv
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Go

BT the worst, yet their stablemate PlusNet have always offered the latest deal to customers when the "cheap deal" they signed up to finishes.

OK, so you have to phone them up to apply, it isn't just a default option, but twice as the contracts been approaching renewal they've emailed a reminder.

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NY court slaps down Facebook's attempt to keep accounts secret from search warrants

Velv
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Black Helicopters

Comes back to the question of who owns the data on Facebook's servers?

If the data is owned by the individuals and it is up to the individuals to challenge the warrant then the warrant must be served on the individuals and not on Facebook.

If the data is owned by Facebook then Facebook has the right to challenge the warrant.

The judges appear to have sided with the former. This could get interesting if used for future precedents...

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Velv
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Boffin

Re: Who goes to jail?

I'm assuming its the same in the US as the UK, but it is the Board of Directors who are the accountable people in the event the company is found guilty.

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Assange™ keeps his couch as Ecuador's president wins election

Velv
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Trollface

I'm surprised Trump hasn't asked Ecuador to hand him over yet, its just the sort of distraction he's likely to throw out there

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US ATM fraud surges despite EMV

Velv
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Thumb Up

Re: Speed

This delay is a good thing.

It allows time to finish bagging the shopping without the waiting 15 people thinking it's your poor bagging skills holding them up.

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Oracle doing due diligence on Accenture. Yep, you read that right

Velv
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Childcatcher

You do realise this is just about the yacht teams...

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UK.gov departments accused of blanket approach to IR35

Velv
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Simple Solution

Let's face it, the "employer" (private or public) has nothing to gain from "cheating" the government out of tax. Business's use contractors as they are a flexible workforce. You take on someone to do work without needing to make them a permanent employee with all the constraints that brings to getting rid of them when things get tight.

So instead of employing Limited Companies and insisting those who attend site are inside IR35 the government should simply be employing those people directly on fixed term contracts.

The government can then leave the Limited Companies to service their multiple clients and save everyone a fortune by ditching IR35 completely.

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Velv
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Boffin

Re: Stop taking the p***

If a permi and a contractor are getting paid the same, they should be paying the same tax.

If they are being paid the same then they pay the same tax. Despite what myths you've heard and what your perception are, the contractor cannot escape paying the tax. They do benefit from ways to structure the timing of payment, but ultimately the tax is paid, and since the contractor if often on a higher gross rate, they actually pay more into HMRC than a permie would have.

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Huawei picks SUSE for assault on UNIX big iron

Velv
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Gimp

The Chinese company's high-availability offering is its KunLun servers, 16-or-32-socket beasts that can pull off tricks like non-disruptive hot swapping of like CPUs and memory.

So others have mentioned Tandem doing this, we were also doing it in Windows Server 2003 in, er, 2003 on HP ProLiant.

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Calling your redundancy programme Baccarat? Immense Bummer, Management

Velv
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Boffin

A similar cost-cutting programme is taking place elsewhere in GTS, with Technical Support Services techies entering into a compulsory redundancy consultation, despite 44 people raising their hands to go of their own accord. Clearly, IBM didn’t want some of those people to leave.

Presumably those roles are not in the UK as it's illegal to split redundancies up into small chunks as this changes the total number of redundancies and the relevant consultation period.

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Plans to force ISPs to filter content branded 'disproportionate'

Velv
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Childcatcher

Is there an internet for dummies book they can read?

You're making the assumption they can read when all the evidence points to them looking at pictures and videos. (And I'm referring to the parents and parliamentarians here)

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A router with a fear of heights? Yup. It's a thing

Velv
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Coat

Re: Cheyenne Mountain Complex

The State Capitol building in Denver, Colorado, has mile high (5280 feet, 1609m) elevation markers on its steps.

Fnarr. Do they have, err, "problems" with office workers and visitor staying late for mile high activities?

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Judge issues search warrant for anyone who Googled a victim's name

Velv
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Boffin

Re: Who is the victim?

As far as the article goes the victim is irrelevant. A person has used a fake identity to commit a crime, this is about tracking the criminal, not remedying directly about remedying the crime. It is those tracking methods, the forensics if you like, that are being questioned.

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Velv
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Headmaster

Re: you heard it hear first

If you google "Barbara Streisand" you'll just get a message saying "Showing results forBarbra Streisand. Search instead for Barbara Streisand" (Google emphasis, not mine)

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This week's top token gesture: Google Chrome chokes energy-hungry background tabs

Velv
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FAIL

Smoke and Mirrors around the problem...

Simply opening Chrome consumes masses amount of power. No background tasks, no "websites" open, just one tab on the default page ready to put something in the search box It should be doing effectively nothing sitting on that page, yet the fan kicks up to high speed while CPU use jumps to 50%+

I'm not saying background tabs aren't a problem, but get the core browser fixed first would help.

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UK.gov gears up for IR35 private sector crackdown – say industry folk

Velv
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Boffin

The UK Tax system is no longer fit for purpose. It needs wholesale replacement to handle the changes in the world of employment opportunities and earning potential.

Permanent, Contract, Gig, Zero hours, etc. All are valid and none of them fit fairly in the current system. Stop wrapping the gerbil in Duct Tape, its done.

One simple income tax on all personal earnings no matter the source, then everyone pays on a level scale.

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IBM could have made almost all the voluntary redundancies it needed

Velv
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Terminator

And they'll have 2,000 roles to offshore in the next five years if El Reg's information about the Lloyds deal is correct.

Plenty more opportunities for VR, although I do hope they realise the terms that Lloyds and HBOS IT staff are likely to be on. 4 weeks for each year of service is typical for the financial services industry (although I have no direct examples for Lloyds / HBOS)

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UK to block Kodi pirates in real-time: Saturday kick-off

Velv
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Coat

Re: Curious argument

It's called trickle down economics.

Rich footballer buys a Bentley, dealer can afford to send kids to private school.

Private school employs new PE staff to teach kids to play cricket.

PE teachers spend time in the pub watching the football on TV.

Pub pays extortionate fee to broadcast football.

Sky/BT pay even higher prices for the broadcast rights.

Footballer gets a higher pay packet.

Simples

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Anti-TV Licensing petition gets May date for Parliament debate

Velv
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If households are going to be charged a fee for the provision of a public service television then why not just add it to the council tax bill for each property?

And before you say "but I don't have a TV so I shouldn't pay", I don't have kids but I still need to pay for the local schools.

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This ferry is said to weigh 250 cows. We say that is actually 20,600 Lindisfarne Gospels

Velv
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Headmaster

Re: Cows/Cowes, IOW?

Boom! (And according to some traditionalists) Tish!

Shirley you mean "ba dum, tish!"

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Tech contractors begin mass UK.gov exodus in wake of HMRC's IR35 income tax clampdown

Velv
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Re: Simple Answer

Velv. Why does your scheme keep employers NI?

I see both sides of keeping / removing Employers NI. You can move all the liability onto the employee, but does the employee feel better paying 30% or 40% even though the gross at the start is different. Stealth :)

Also, under the current scheme the Employer contribution is only 2% above ~£42k. If you make ER NI 15% on all earnings (i.e. no higher NI cap) then you get stealthy "extra" tax via the company for those who are paid more.

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Velv
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Boffin

Simple Answer

How to make it fair for everyone - get rid of employee National Insurance

I know some people believe contractors don't pay tax, however contractors pay tax on everything they earn, but can structure it to minimise their liability. Dividends can only be paid on Company profits so are already taxed as Corporation tax. Only NI is where savings can really be made.

So

  • Remove employee NI (which is 12%)
  • Increase basic rate tax to 30% and higher rate to 50%
  • Increase employer NI to 15% to cover the difference.

This means:

  • lower paid employees will pay less tax as NI kicks in before the basic rate, and when it does it kick in its at 30% not 32% (20%+12%)
  • middle paid employees will pay about the same
  • higher paid employees will pay more as employee NI currently reduces to 2% above £42k

And when the playing field is level for everyone there's no need for "schemes" like IR35.

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You're Donald Trump's sysadmin. You've got data leaks coming out the *ss. What to do

Velv
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Bernard Woolley: That's one of those irregular verbs, isn't it? I give confidential security briefings. You leak. He has been charged under section 2a of the Official Secrets Act.

(Yes, Minister)

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Brit cops can keep millions of mugshots of innocent folks on file

Velv
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Facepalm

How hard can it be!!!

the Home Office stopped short of demanding the deletion of all images of innocent people no longer under investigation because, apparently, there are so many photos on file, it would be impractical to ask officers to go through all their databases and remove photographs of individuals who have never been convicted of an offence.

Select * from "suspects" where conviction = 0

Delete

Simples

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Toxic Uber sued after driver allegedly tried to rape passenger in car

Velv
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Boffin

Re: It's not clear whether taxis and limousines are any safer than Uber

Both City Cabs and Capital Cars in Edinburgh provide upfront information when you book online through their app, including requesting immediate pickup like Uber. A text message has the basic details and the car can be tracked in the app.

And since both appear to use an off the shelf app I suspect many other operators offer the same services.

Agreed if you hail a taxi at the roadside you don't get the details, but that's like comparing oranges and bananas as you can't hail an Uber.

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Apple to Europe: It's our job to design Ireland's tax system, not yours

Velv
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Coffee/keyboard

Apple Ireland “carried out only routine functions and were not involved in the development and commercialisation of Apple IP which drove profits,” says Plea 4.

So pay the tax where the profits were actually made and not in a low tax jurisdiction so as to avoid paying it you fucking blood sucking leeches

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Google agrees to break pirates' domination over music searches

Velv
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Big Brother

Re: Dangerous precedent

FAKE NEWS - this never happened and if it had happened it would entirely have been for your protection.

Judicial process is there to ensure fairness, the world increasingly seems to want to remove these safeguards and plough on regardless. Politicians and the people alike. "EXPERTS - what do experts know! We're not going to listen to them, I'm free to make my own decisions"

Be scared. Be very scared.

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Apple: Don't panic, but your Mac can be pwned via GarageBand .bands

Velv
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Trollface

"installed by default"

D'oh!

I thought all good OS's had got past those shenanigans

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The Register's guide to protecting your data when visiting the US

Velv
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Re: Don't accept it, act on it

but were I to suggest to my employer that the USA was a no-go, then I'd be on the first train out-of-town to P45 land. The sad reality that neither the USA nor my employers really have any regard for me (or anyone really).

Unless you were specifically employed with international travel as a requirement of the job then you'd stand a good chance of constructive dismissal. No employer can compel you to leave the country.

The USA will see a dip in foreign visitors. Will it be enough for some to take notice, not sure.

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Want to come to the US? Be prepared to hand over your passwords if you're on Trump's hit list

Velv
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Coat

Re: It could be worse.

Bonjour, mon nom est Donald, je suis un Canadien, pas des États-Unis d'Amérique et je suis une personne agréable, honnête

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Laptop-light GoCardless says customers' personal data may have been lifted

Velv
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Boffin

Disk Encryption

This is an example of why you apply disk encryption to not only your laptops but your desktops as well. Burglars will take both, and users do like to dump files locally.

Servers may also require disk encryption if they're stored in a cupboard like many small businesses.

Apologies for pointing out the blindingly obvious, but common sense really isn't that common.

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A non-Standards Soviet approved measure of weight? Sod off, BBC!

Velv
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Headmaster

432 gallons per mile

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EU whacks first nail into mobile roaming charges' coffin

Velv
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Facepalm

... will be able to use their phones as if they were actually in a single market.

D'Oh!

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Wanna protect your data center? Take tips from the US Secret Service

Velv
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Boffin

As mentioned, implementing on to an existing legacy network is a massive undertaking that will result in outages.

However it should be done for all new deployments. Start locked down and only open what must be opened.

One other caveat - make sure everyone involved fully understands the concepts, rationale and technical requirements otherwise you'll end up with a broken network that's a nightmare to maintain.

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Ohio bloke accused of torching own home after his pacemaker rats him out to cops

Velv
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Big Brother

Metadata captures the criminal

I'm just waiting for the next logical use of the data off our devices and records.

Police find body buried in the woods, pathologist sets a time of death and potential time of burial.

Police approach mobile phone networks for details of all devices in the area in said timeframe.

Knock, knock!!!

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Parliamentary Trump-off? Pro-Donald petition passes 100k signatures

Velv
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Boffin

So the two petitions have been signed at a ratio of roughly 10:1, a fairly significant clear expression of the public's opinion given Scottish Independence polled 55:45 and Brexit polled 52:48

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President Donald Trump taken on by unlikely foe: Badass park rangers

Velv
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Big Brother

Re: Trump is in for a wake up call.

"Whistleblowing and the protections surrounding it are exactly the type of regulations holding back business and will be next in line to be removed."

Just wait for it...

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UK.gov tells freelance techies to slap 20 per cent on fees as IR35 tax hike looms

Velv
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"the correct running of their companies in line with the legislation that affects all companies"

Ah, but the problem is that the legislation doesn't apply equally to all companies.

If a company is to supply a worker to another company or a government agency then the rules should be equal for all companies. IR35 means small companies are penalised for supplying workers where the big companies can supply the same worker without the "employee" tax implications while being in a better position to reduce their corporation tax liabilities.

And who is advising the government? - the big consulting companies!

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Velv
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Facepalm

Talk about shooting yourself in the foot!

"Yes, we're going to get an extra £400million in tax from the contractors we employ and it's only going to cost us, er, and extra £400million a year to do it."

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Trump's FBI boss, Attorney General picks reckon your encryption's getting backdoored

Velv
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Pirate

"We're going to remove regulation. Regulation is killing industry, killing business. Sad"

What he gives with one hand he takes away with another. You can make it law, but that doesn't mean companies will comply.

You can fine those that don't comply, but at some point the cost of doing business in the US outweighs the profits, and the tech giants will relocate to a less regulated jurisdiction.

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Assange reverse-ferrets on promise to fly to US post-Manning clemency

Velv
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Coffee/keyboard

If you mean pardon then say pardon

Pardon = 6 characters

Clemency = 8 characters

Asshole left it deliberately vague so he would never need to make good on the promise.

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Velv
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Flame

Even if it wasn't the clemency he meant, instead of going to the US, Asshole should at the very least exit the Equador embassy and face the charges laid against him in Sweden and the UK. He might be surprised and be cleared in both jurisdictions...

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