I Love Watching Evil Plans Fail

If you haven’t heard of Righthaven I’ll give you a quick summary of the law firm. They’re scum. Seriously. What Righthaven does is buy up newspapers and then sue very site that has ever linked to the online sight of the purchased newspaper. Additionally newspapers can come on board without being purchased and use Righthaven’s “protection” services. Well it seems they just had their ass handed to them:

Last Friday, a judge in the Nevada federal district court patiently explained why fair use disposes of Righthaven’s copyright claim arising from the republication of an entire news article by a nonprofit organization. The hearing was in one of the now-250 Righthaven copyright cases. A written order, which will help set a persuasive precedent for other copyright troll cases, will be issued later.

Burn you sons of bitches.

Rough Road for AT&T and T-Mobile

It seems some anonymous goon at the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) gave his professional opinion on the AT&T and T-Mobile merger. Needless to say he doesn’t think it’s going to fly without the FCC getting a couple pounds of flesh:

Speaking to The Wall Street Journal on Thursday, an anonymous Federal Communications Commission official said “there’s no way the chairman’s office [will] rubber-stamp” AT&T’s $39 billion acquisition of Deutsche Telecom-owned T-Mobile USA, and that the approval process will be “a steep climb at least.”

This could be taken as the FCC will likely block the merger. Personally I bet the FCC puts on a huge dog and pony show to demonstrate that they have the “best interests of consumers in mind” but will ultimately determine this merger good to go. Ma Bell is coming back baby!

Poorly Implemented Tracking System

It seems Copenhagen airport has wasted a bunch of money on a tracking system that is so easy to defeat that I’m going to tell you how to do it. First read this and try to guess my ingenious way of defeating this tracking system:

According to the New York Times, Copenhagen International Airport is currently testing a new program that monitors passengers based on WiFi data emitted from devices like laptops and smartphones.

You may have come to the same method of bypassing this tracking system as I have, turn off your fucking WiFi card. Simple, easy, and effective. You could also mess with the tracking system by putting your WiFi enabled phone into somebody bag when they’re not looking. Better yet just put your WiFi enabled device under a seat somewhere and go walk around the airport. Seriously this is a horribly implemented tracking system.

That Evil NRA

As Snowflakes in Hell brings up one thing the anti-gunners like to parrot is how the National Rifle Association (NRA) hates police officers. They claim the fact that the NRA works to maintain gun rights for use measly little peasants as proof. Well the NRA must really hate police officers since they’re buying them body armor:

The Taylor County Sheriff’s Office is getting new body armor thanks to a grant from the National Rifle Association.

The funds were awarded earlier this year in an effort to provide body armor that may not otherwise be available because of budget constraints.

Wait that doesn’t fit the anti-gunner schtick.

New Technology On the Road to Building ‘Mechs

I think the epitome of human science will be when we finally develop giant walking robots with guns, or more commonly known as ‘Mechs. One of the things with a ‘Mech is the massive amount of wires you have to run in order to send data and signals to various parts of the machine. Well it seems a scientist has found a way to simplify ‘Mechs by transmitting data through steel:

Tristan Lawry, doctoral candidate in electrical and computer engineering, has developed equipment which can transmit data at high rates through thick, solid steel or other barriers. Significantly, Lawry’s kit also transmits power. One obvious application here would be transmission through the steel pressure hull of a submarine: at the moment such hulls must have hundreds of penetrations for power and data cables, each one adding expense, weight and maintenance burden.

Obviously this can reduce the amount of wiring needed to construct a ‘Mech and also increase the reliability as the only means of stopping transmissions would be to blow the entire section off. Needless to say this is bad ass. A hat tip to Bruce Schneier for this story.

Happy X Birthday OS X

Today marks the tenth birthday of Mac OS X. It really doesn’t seem that long to tell the truth. I still remember when Apple unveiled OS X to the world and what a piece of shit it initially was (although still better than OS 9). Mac OS 10.0 was so bad that free upgrades to 10.1 were given to early adopters. As the versions increase Mac OS X finally started getting usable (in my opinion) at version 10.3 with it finally being complete enough to use as a primary OS at version 10.4 (when I finally adopted it as my primary OS).

I’d say it will be interesting to see what the next 10 years of OS X will bring but I’m pretty sure Apple will be at OS 11 by then and I’ll no longer be able to swap the 10 for an X to make it sound way cooler.

The Death of Due Process

Our legal system is one where a person must be found guilty of a crime by a jury before punishment can be exacted. Well that was the idea at least, the reality is a bit different through. For example thanks to various legislation passed shortly after 9/11 you can be arrested and detained indefinably so long as the state labels you a terrorist. Apparently some “representatives” decided this was a good idea and put some provisions in the The Fix Gun Checks Act of 2011 that would strip the second amendment rights of anybody arrest of a drug crime, regardless of whether or not they were actually convicted:


Sponsored by New York Democratic Sen. Chuck Schumer and introduced earlier this month, the expanded background checks bill includes a “clarification of the definition of drug abusers and drug addicts who are prohibited from possessing firearms.” Under Schumer’s bill, the definition of a “drug abuser” would include anyone with “an arrest for the use or possession of a controlled substance within the past 5 years.”

But the “arrest” language of Schumer’s bill and a clarification from the ATF indicate that a greater number of innocent Americans would be barred from owning a gun if the Senate bill becomes law.

“Under the definition of ‘unlawful user’ … an inference of current use could be drawn if the one arrest resulted in a conviction for use or possession of a controlled substance within the past year,” the ATF told the The Daily Caller.

To clear up any confusion, Schumer’s bill would expand that “inference” to say: if you’ve ever been arrested for any kind of drug use or possession in the past five year, you can be denied the lawful possession of a firearm.

Obviously Schumer is an asshole but I’ve already said that several times on this blog. People who’ve read this blog long enough know I’m against continued punishment after your initial sentence has been carried out. What I mean to say is I’m against the stripping of somebody’s rights after they’ve served their prison sentence. Punishments should fit crimes and being stripped of the best means of self-defense does not fit using marijuana.

Drug use in of itself isn’t violent and permanently taking somebody’s right to keep and bear arms is flimsy even for violent crimes. There is absolutely no justification for taking somebody’s right of self-defense if they’ve committed a non-violent crime. But what lacks any justification whatsoever is taking somebody’s second amendment right because they were arrested for a crime but not convicted. You’re not supposed to be able to punish somebody for a crime they haven’t been proven beyond a reasonable doubt of committing.

This amendment would be completely open for police abuse. What happens if a sheriff in a shall-issue state doesn’t want to issue permits because he doesn’t believe citizens are as good as he is? Well you simply arrest them for a drug charge and release them. There you go that person is now no longer able to get a permit and the sheriff gets to continue his monopoly on the use of violence in all situations.