Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Q&A - 19/8

NYT

In June, a father of six was shot dead on a Monday afternoon in Evanston, Ill., a suburb 10 miles north of Chicago. [..] With a killer on the loose and few leads at their disposal, investigators in Cook County, which includes Evanston, were encouraged when they found two smartphones alongside the body of the deceased: an iPhone 6 running on Apple’s iOS 8 operating system, and a Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge running on Google’s Android operating system. Both devices were passcode protected.

An Illinois state judge issued a warrant ordering Apple and Google to unlock the phones and share with authorities any data therein that could potentially solve the murder. Apple and Google replied, in essence, that they could not — because they did not know the user’s passcode.

The homicide remains unsolved. The killer remains at large.  Until very recently, this situation would not have occurred.  Last September, Apple and Google, whose operating systems are used in 96 percent of smartphones worldwide, announced that they had re-engineered their software with “full-disk” encryption, and could no longer unlock their own products as a result.

We cannot peek into people's minds either

.. or make cows fly. There will be limits to anything we do, and we must err on the side of privacy.  If Snowden revelations proved anything, it is the necessity for wide-spread protection against a rogue state, and I don't just mean North Korea. We also need to accept tech as part of us / appendages which should not be subject to the whims of bureucrats. "I want your see inside your head, gimme your head". What are you - ISIS? Buzz off. 

I believe lefties are getting lost in the wilderness here, replacing their nanny-state love with an imagined nanny-big-company who they think will take care of their every need - indirectly. Tech companies are in the business of making money (thank god) and out-of-control branches of gov messing shit up worldwide is causing loss of credibility for them. Instead of pointing the finger to this rampant decaying cold-war infrastructure, it seems big tech companies are put on the spot as an easy target. 

Question 

Why is Putin still in power?

Supposedly he tried to hand over the reins

As a High Horse I'd like to think he would have at least tried to empower others; according to this article he tried, with Medvvvvedev, he failed - siloviki, civiliki, all that. But as things stands now, his legitimacy being called into question, there is this huge apparatus around him which is there only to intimidate others, keep them out of power and themselves in; Kasparov said he could not even rent office space in Moscow, everyone was too scared to be involved with him, in any kind of opposition.

I said "an HH would have tried", bcz another HH I looked closely, Kemal A. of Turkland for example, did try. It is widely known near his death he was somewhat sad that he'd probably go down history as a two-bit dictator, he was very concious of this part of his legacy. He and people around him gave democracy a try, Kemal asked one of his friends to start a second party but the interest in this other party was so intense the newly minted Integrators got scared. "The friend" wasn't even had to be asked to give up his party, he shut it down himself. 

Now, knowing what we know through the Time for Change model, it is clear these people's view of democracy was extremely naive. The whole point of the democratic exercise is, through a few rough measurements, that parties regularly get the fuck out. No one stays too long / can stay too long which is a good thing. GDP growth down, stayed in office too long, popularity waning, you are outa there. The leader could be Churchill, who won a frickin World War, the electorate does not care. Bye bye. What Kemal should have done was to actually shut down his own party, create two parties out of it,  distribute all "the friends" equally among them, and go to the election (and still stay as the president, with limited powers). That way there is no stampede to any one party, and after a while people can start to go back and forth between these two parties. At first placing a hard-limit on the # of parties to two can be a wise choice. As long as "the winning coalition" is as large as possible, people vote, and their votes count, things are a-ok.

Until there is a true 3W way of governance that is.


The Arctic is a unique treasure. Given what we know, it's not worth the risk of drilling.

Exactly

IMHO drilling in the arctic is government-sponsored terrorism. 

Question

Adam and Eve story in religious texts is such bull. How can everyone be descended from two people?

Scientists would disagree with you

Jeremy Rifkin's excellent video on the subject is here