The mystery of Lost Atlantis solved at last!!!
6927 posts • joined 19 Jan 2007
Given a lot of the potential nicknames that could have been applied (usually by petty-minded bullies who thought that references to Mars Bars were the ultimate in wit) "Penfold" was certainly not the worst by any means.
I got tagged with Penfold almost 30 years ago and still to this day there are people who call me that, rather than Graham and it's never bothered me in the slightest.
Whereas I often have problems with Virgin, such as my broadband connection freezing for several seconds on an intermittent basis with no rhyme or reason that I can report to get fixed.
On several occasions over the past year or three I've called their Customer Services because of a fault that they say is with my computer/ router/ whatever and that they'll have to send out an engineer in two or three days, when the fault is actually with their system and it would be a waste of time sending an engineer, but their drones are too dim to realise this.
I also sometimes don't get the promised speeds and see downloads slow to a crawl.
The only reason I don't switch to another provider is that my BT line has been cut off (quite literally, someone has taken a pair of wire cutters to it and it ends half-way down the wall!) and they want silly money to re-connect it which would wipe out any savings or benefits I might get by changing.
> Blue lights are actually fine and legal in the UK
From the MOT Tester's Manual
"Two front position lamps must be fitted, one on each side and show a steady white light to the front (or yellow if incorporated in a yellow headlamp)"
They must "show light of the correct colour. Note: Some front position lamps have a blue tinge to the light. This is acceptable provided the light is predominantly white."
A reason for rejection is if the light "shows a light other than red to the rear and white to the front".
> A script to replicate your endeavours would be more along the lines of make statement, deny statement, repeat. Throw in a few childish insults and pretend it makes an argument.
Erm, Matt, that's a mirror you're looking into...
> So, where's the proof of 'harm' you promised?
You mean *apart* from the multiple examples I and others have already given that you've ignored or moved the goalposts on?
What *would* you accept, Matt? A voice from the heavens? Carved stone tablets? It's clear that nothing is good enough to convince you that there may be another viewpoint other than yours and past evidence has shown that there's no point in wasting more time on trying to remove your blinkers.
You know, with a little work, we could use this list and a few other bits and pieces to create the Matt-o-Tron!
Firstly it needs to come up with an "amusing" variation on someone's name.
Then it needs to be set to cherry pick bits of arguments which it can "win" by ignoring any facts that it can't counter and introducing a selection of mobile goalposts.
Next add in various references to sheeple, comments about baaaah-lieving, assorted irrelevant straw-men arguments (and a whine or two about those who comment on this behaviour aren't adding anything to the debate) and season to taste.
Finally chuck in an ad hominem or three and BINGO: Instant Matt Bryant post!
Ah, sounds like the recent ridiculously over-dramatic documentary about "Sun Storms" which I watched a little while ago with lots of doom-mongering predictions about how society could be destroyed by one of these events because we don't have a disaster plan to deal with it.
We also don't have a disaster plan for another Tunguska style event or a massive volcanic eruption causing a year without a summer etc, but it doesn't mean the sky is falling...
> smart enough to have backup is smart enough to avoid scamware.
I wouldn't be too smug if I were you.
I'm pretty clued up on this stuff, my system is well firewalled and virus protected, I have good spam filters, I run ghostery, NoScript, Flashblock, I keep regular backups etc etc, yet still, a few weeks ago, I almost got taken in by a phishing e-mail because I had been expecting a message from $site and this one came in at virtually the same time and it came from a well faked domain name that was so close to the original so I didn't spot the substitution.
Fortunately what saved me was the fact that my browser *didn't* auto-fill the log-in details because it didn't recognise the substituted domain name, but, had I been distracted, I could have logged in and given away my details.
So although, like you, I may have been thinking "I'm not going to be caught by these scams" that was a saultary wake-up call that you can't let your guard down *ever*.
> Oh, I know you want to baaaah-lieve I'm wrong, it's just you hate the fact you can't prove I'm wrong.
No, I've already done it, but you just won't accept it. I'll do it again, but you'll dodge and evade and move the goalposts and bring up more irrelevancies to desperately avoid admitting it.
> You're now going to post paragraph after paragraph of denial
> rather than admit (a) people put their secrets up online all the time,
Some people do, Matt, but as skelband (what, *still* no "amusing" variation on his name?) has said, he doesn't. Nor do I. Nor do a lot of other people, but, of course, that's not good enough for you because you want me to prove a negative.
> and (b) you cannot provide any proof that your coms have been listened to,
Again you want me to prove a negative.
> because (c) you cannot show any harm or the 'chilling of liberty' you insisted is happening.
I've already given examples, but you won't accept those because they don't fit in with your mindset, so how about this quote from David Cameron in Parliament: “We have had repeated meetings of the extremism task force — it met again yesterday — setting out a whole series of steps that we will take to counter the extremist narrative, including by blocking online sites.”
So if an online site is determined to be "extremist", it can be blocked and those who run it (and, presumably those who try to access it) can be watched and monitored even if they only came across it by accident or were conducting legitimate research as happened to the "Nottingham Two", a student and a staff member who looked at an "Al Qaeda training manual" and were subsequently arrested even though it was freely available on US Government websites.
This is no figment of my imagination, these are demonstrable *facts* and the end result of these is that anyone who knows of this case will be given pause to think "hang on, if I look at X or Y or Z I risk being arrested too, maybe I shouldn't do so..."
And that, Matt, is a Chilling Effect, whether you accept it or not.
> Please show in any of the Snowjob 'revelations' where it states the NSA or GCHQ want to read everyone's coms.
Hmm, to quote from the Guardian (who published them): "The documents show the NSA, intent on exploiting the communications revolution to the full, developing ever more intrusive programmes in pursuit of its ambition to have surveillance cover of the whole planet: total command of what the NSA refers to as the 'digital battlefield'."
> Once again, I expect you to avoid answering that and divert off into another bleating denial.
Once again you're wrong, Matt.
> And how do you expect them to get that targeting intelligence, by calling 0800-finda-jihadi? This IS one of the targeting systems.
I've already pointed out the fallacy in that argument, but still you won't accept that building a bigger haystack will make it easier to find a needle.
> why don't you try actually answering a point instead of just evading it. Well, actually it's patently obvious you can't [...] hence your continued evasions.
ROFL! Paging Mr Pott and Mr Kettle-Black!
> What secret list?
You *really* do have a problem, Matt, don't you? I can't prove a negative, therefore you win the argument! (Why not try the Chewbacca defence next?)
> ".....Like the State being able to require telecommunications providers to give them people's communication data without any evidence of wrongdoing...." You mean under a warrant, as part of a criminal investigation to find evidence of a crime? If you want to pretend otherwise then please provide a verifiable case of it happening or admit you're just making stuff up.
To quote from Big Brother Watch "When details recently emerged in the media about the Prism and Tempora programmes, codenames for previously secret online surveillance operations, it was revealed that GCHQ has the capacity to collect more than 21 petabytes of data a day – equivalent to sending all the information in all the books in the British Library 192 times every 24 hours. The disclosures have raised serious parliamentary concerns both in Britain and at the EU level."
Now, Matt, are you *honestly* trying to tell me that a warrant has been granted to cover *every* single piece of information collected by GCHQ under Tempora??
In any case, once again, Matt, feel free to get the last word (well, ad hominem attack) in. It's as clear as ever that you will not (or perhaps that's "cannot"?) listen to anything that goes against your blinkered viewpoints and your mindless acceptance that the State is only ever there for our good so we must accept every intrusion on our privacy and every infrigement of our liberties without question like good little proles.
PS perhaps "Numbskullband" would be a good variant? What do you think...?
> Marsbarbrain has to disagree because.... well, because he just has to disagree with anyone that is not in the flock.
No, Matt, I disagree with you because I think you are *WRONG*. But you can't handle that, so you have to resort to calling people names and using Straw Man arguments to try to discredit them when they point out your mistakes.
> "....First mistake: Not everyone does that....." Agreed
Thank you, you at least can admit you have made a mistake. Well done. The rest of your response, however is completely irrelevant to the point, so I won't waste time addressing it.
> Apart from the fact THEY ARE NOT LOOKING AT EVERYTHING, they simply do not have the bandwidth
Oh dear, Matt, you rather miss the point. It is not whether they are "looking at everything", it is that they are *trying* to do so to the best of their abilities in the hope that, somehow, troughing down huge amounts of data in the vain hope that, somehow, they'll actually be able to find something useful (except, of course, as you later admit again, they often have to throw much of it away because they can't process it)
(More irrelevancies ignored)
> how do you expect them to find terrorist or foreign spies or criminal coms?
Well firstly I'd say that they should do this by actually using targetted intelligence instead of a massive dragnet that treats *everyone* as a suspect and then trying to somehow eliminate everyone who doesn't send messages to others saying "Ok, we're going to blow up the building next week, Allahu Akhbar!"
Amazingly enough, the Security Services and Police and other such agencies *have* actually been able to do this in the past without considering that we are all potential terrorists. Of course they have also utterly *failed* to prevent attacks *even when* they had the information because it got ignored or mis-filed or swamped by too much other data, but that's not going to happen if they make their haystack bigger, is it...?
> Would you really want the authorities to wait until AFTER another 9/11, or 7th July Tube attack, or Madrid train bombing?
Ah, the classic cry justifying State snooping. Why not add "Won't you think of the children" whilst you're at it?
> 'look at China'. Which has nothing to do with the US or UK. It's a separate country with its own and unique security apparatus, moron
Oh dear, calling people names again, Matt, as if that somehow makes your arguments more intelligent (or cogent, or credible). Trying to dismiss examples of what is happening in other countries as irrelevant just shows that you are simply attempting (as always) to move the goalposts to where you've "won".
> The truth is you KNOW you can't show any harm or 'chilling of liberty',
ITYM "can't show any that you will actually listen to".
Like people being convicted of a crime for failing to reveal their passwords *even when* charged with non-terrorist offences. Like someone being arrested and charged for threatening to blow up Robin Hood airport. Like the Government wanting ISPs to pre-emptively block "unacceptable" web content based on a secret filter list. Like the State being able to require telecommunications providers to give them people's communication data without any evidence of wrongdoing. Like interception of communications and data being permissible without a warrant. Like...
According you, it seems, we should not be concerned about any of these because they're all being done for our own good and there's *no way* that an innocent person would ever be affected by any of these, so we shouldn't object.
Well, sorry, Matt, but some of us are not so blindly accepting of the State's intrusion into our business and private lives and we don't fall for the "Nothing to hide, nothing to fear" that certain people are trying to spoon-feed to us...
PS You *still* didn't post an amusing variation on Skelband's name. Go on, we all know you want to, so give us the benefit of your amazing wit...
> you lot also dump tons of private data onto social media such as Twatter, Faecesbook, etc., with gusto.
First mistake: Not everyone does that.
Second mistake: Assuming that if people *do* put information on Facebook or Twitter or anywhere else, it gives permission for the authorities to say "well, if they do *that* it justifies us looking at *everything* they do simply because we can".
> you have failed to show that it is actually being chilled at all
Third mistake: Try looking at what's happening in China. Or Bahrain. Or Syria. Or Vietnam. Or any of the many other countries where access to information is being blocked or controlled or monitored such that anyone who steps out of line by looking at "unapproved" material or expressing views which contradict those of the state apparatus can be subject to legal (or illegal) sanctions, imprisonment, torture or even death.
The Right to Privacy and the Right of Freedom of expression are two sides of the same coin. If you are not free to express your thoughts because those in power are monitoring what you say and to whom, then your freedom of speech is being chilled because you will be inclined to self-censor.
Try reading this report by Frank La Rue "on the promotion and protection of the right to freedom of opinion and expression" the UN Special Rapporteur made to the UN in 2013 which states, for example:
"Inadequate legal standards increase the risk of individuals being exposed to violation of their human rights, including the right to privacy and the right to freedom of expression. They also have an adverse impact on certain groups of individuals – for example, members of certain political parties, trade unionists or national, ethnic and linguistic minorities – who may be more vulnerable to State communications surveillance. Without strong legal protections in place, journalists, human rights defenders and political activists risk being subjected to arbitrary surveillance activities."
"Even a narrow, non-transparent, undocumented, executive use of surveillance may have a chilling effect without careful and public documentation of its use, and known checks and balances to prevent its misuse."
and has amongst its conclusions:
"States cannot ensure that individuals are able to freely seek and receive information or express themselves without respecting, protecting and promoting their right to privacy. Privacy and freedom of expression are interlinked and mutually dependent; an infringement upon one can be both the cause and consequence of an infringement upon the other. Without adequate legislation and legal standards to ensure the privacy, security and anonymity of communications, journalists, human rights defenders and whistleblowers, for example, cannot be assured that their communications will not be subject to States’ scrutiny."
> you really don't understand that this IS the mechanism that provides the targeting information for more focused activities
Fourth mistake: Assuming that it makes it easier to find a needle in a haystack by making the haystack even bigger. All this achieves is to swamp any "signal" that may be there with massive amounts of "noise" that totally drowns it out and you end up wasting time and resources chasing more and more False Positives.
This is not "targetting" anything, unless you think that if you make enough targets you're guaranteed to eventually hit *something*...
Oh and PS to quote from your next post "as admitted in Snowjob's own 'revelations', the vast majority of the data is never even looked at before being deleted."
Excuse me? So this information which "IS the mechanism that provides the targeting information for more focused activities" is thrown away without being looked at?
Does this mean that a) it's not actually as useful as you think or b) our Security Services are failing because they're not using it for their "focussed activities"? Just wondering...
PPS You forgot to come up with an "amusing" variant on skelband's name. Tsk, you're slipping...
'...dubbed the "Supersonic Inflatable Aerodynamic Decelerator (SIAD) – will then inflate around the LDSD, "to slow the test article to a speed where it becomes safe to deploy a supersonic parachute".'
Sounds rather like the Ballute used in the aerobraking manoeuvre done by the Alexei Leonov in Jupiter's atmosphere in the film 2010.
Given the way Google has behaved over recent years and the irresponsible and arrogant way it has gathered, processed and disseminated people's private information (hint: Google, try looking up the Data Protection Act), it seems that regulation is the only way left to approach it since the Big G won't listen (or consider) anything else.
Ah, once again Matt Bryant goes for the man instead of the argument as if calling people names and insulting their intelligence because they don't agree with him is some sort of credible debating technique.
And then he tries to move the goalposts by making sweeping generalisations about "Leftie regimes" to try to divert attention.
Still, please, Matt, feel free to call me "Marsbar brain" again (who was it who just said: "Seriously, you thought that comment was witty?") if it makes you feel any better. It won't make your arguments any more convincing, though.
This reminds me of the days back when I was a kid where demo programs in computer shops would say "Type in your name" and then say "Hello, Graham, would you like to play a game?".
So I'd type in something like "Idiot", clear the screen, then wait for someone else to come along...
Now let's see, which profile name should I link with the photo of someone who is likely to walk past one of these machines? "Shit for brains"? "You, yes, the ugly one"? Perhaps just "Wanker" would do...
> the contracted photo people used the rider bib numbers to cross reference the owner from the registration lists, and posted all photos, along with an invoice. If you didn't want to pay for the photo, YOU had to post it back.
No, you didn't.
> The success of UKIP is down to voters wanting to stick two fingers up to the 'main' parties.
I have no particular love for the Greens, but if you (or anyone else) had actually had a chance to find out anything about their manifesto and intentions they could have discovered that they, too, had an anti-Europe stance and some reasonably credible and sensible policies.
See this guy's blog for some thought provoking comment: http://anotherangryvoice.blogspot.co.uk/2014/05/green-party-protest-vote-eu.html
Unfortunately they (and anyone else) were totally drowned out by the whole Farrage farrago even though they managed to knock the Lib Dems into fifth place.
Here's a quote from "A Man for All Seasons" that you might like to think about...
* * * * *
Roper: So, now you give the Devil the benefit of law!
More: Yes! What would you do? Cut a great road through the law to get after the Devil?
Roper: Yes, I'd cut down every law in England to do that!
More: Oh? And when the last law was down, and the Devil turned 'round on you, where would you hide, Roper, the laws all being flat? This country is planted thick with laws, from coast to coast, Man's laws, not God's! And if you cut them down (and you're just the man to do it!), do you really think you could stand upright in the winds that would blow then? Yes, I'd give the Devil benefit of law, for my own safety's sake!
* * * * *
Well, yes. some will get sorted out.
Meanwhile others will get screwed, ripped off, conned, mis-sold or just be the victims of a well-meaning but totally ill-informed, misguided and poorly planned scheme which seemed like a good idea at the time.
Still, caveat emptor, eh? It was probably the victims' own fault for being so stupid...
> The problem is them damned Humans, they don't like change.
ORLY? Or perhaps they don't like the "Fuck everyone and everything else, I'm alright Jack" mentality which has caused so many problems in the past?
"Those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it." - George Satayan
> the rampant consumerism pretty much guarantees you scads of money if you don't mind fighting off the constant legal attacks.
ITYM "If you can *afford* to keep fighting off the constant legal attacks..."
The point is that the broken patent system combined with rampant ambulance chasing lawyers pretty much guarantees that they are the only ones who will really be guaranteed to make scads of money.
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