Morning Links

Wednesday, February 2nd, 2011

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43 Responses to “Morning Links”

  1. #1 |  claude | 

    “The AtlanticWire is a good place to keep track of what’s happening in Egypt”

    So is CNN. Its gettin’ rough over there.

  2. #2 |  goober1223 | 

    Love the soccer flops site. The only other thing that bothers me so much about soccer is how much pushing is done, but that is infinitely less annoying than flopping.

  3. #3 |  SJE | 

    Re: the internet kill switch. Its been maddening the last few days hearing all the people on TV and radio talking about how it would be more difficult to block the internet in the USA vs Egypt, and none standing up for the proposition that the Gov should not even try to do it.

  4. #4 |  Brandon | 

    It wouldn’t be used for censorship, it would just be used to stop the spread of “hate-filled rhetoric.” And maybe people saying “untruths” about Obamacare. And people saying offensive things about dead people on websites. And the terrorists. And the anti-government propaganda that directly leads to terrorism. But not censorship, no way! Don’t be ridiculous! This is America! And if you imply anything like that again, we’ll shut off your internet! For Freedom!

  5. #5 |  James D | 

    That article hardly “debunks” anchor babies. When over 8% (stat from the same study) of births a year are to illegals … that’s a pretty large figure. And all you have to do is go to a few major border cities and see the amount of illegal pregnant women they deal with on a daily basis. Places like this … (linked to snopes so no one can say “it’s a bogus internet rumor”):

  6. #6 |  Marty | 

    if the Jeremy Marks story is any indication, the media’s engaging in lots of self-censorship, already. Even with the internet, this amazing story isn’t breaking- I guess the 20 hours of weather reporting I endured on tv yesterday was more news-worthy.

  7. #7 |  CRNewsom | 

    @#6 Marty: Re: Media and the weather:

    Exactly. “OMG there is a metric crapton of snow in Chicago!” Yeah, that’s what they call Winter by the lake. The next thing we’ll hear about is some missing white woman or Charlie Sheen in rehab.

  8. #8 |  Mattocracy | 

    From Joe Leiberman…

    “For all its allure, the Internet can be a dangerous place with electronic pipelines that run directly into everything from our personal bank accounts to key infrastructure to government and industrial secrets”

    …which means that regular people shouldn’t be allowed to have access to their bank accounts or government because of terrorists might hurt us. What an asshole.

  9. #9 |  Brandon | 

    The Kill Switch article proves that congressmorons are hopelessly out of touch. “Cyber Crisis” might have been relevant in 1999. These days we should be more worried about an iCrisis. But that’s kinda beside the point….WHAT THE FUCK IS A CYBER CRISIS?

  10. #10 |  Aresen | 

    When will America stand up in opposition to the media consolidation going on in our streaming p**n?

    [Edit to avoid the snoop filters at work.]

    But I am standing up! As firmly as I can!

  11. #11 |  CyniCAl | 

    •The AtlanticWire is a good place to keep track of what’s happening in Egypt. Things appear to have taken a turn for the worse.

    Sticks and stones, unbelievable.

    Equally unbelievable is that Mubarak would defend his sovereignty. Not.

    Not that it matters, the new boss would have been the same as the old one anyway.

  12. #12 |  Stephen | 

    I bet we can get on some terrorist watch list if we sign the petition for dropping charges on Jeremy Marks. (although just posting here might be enough)

  13. #13 |  Boyd Durkin | 

    Love seeing Egypt and Jordan replacing their governments with different old cronies. Then, Americans laugh and ask “who’s dumb enough to fall for that?”

    Tap ’em on the shoulder and ask how Congress is doing.

  14. #14 |  Boyd Durkin | 

    As for the kill switch, there are legitimate threat issues raised by Congress. But USG inet kill switch is a massive jump in logic (and self serving) among other things. It would make attacking Iraq after 9/11 look sane.

  15. #15 |  Sean L. | 

    “Internet Kill Switch”

    I thought we were supposed to be moving -away- from this violent rhetoric. How about:

    Internet Rub-out Switch
    Internet Bump-off Switch
    Internet Pushing-Up-The-Daisies Switch
    Internet Frag Switch

    Take your pick:

  16. #16 |  Aresen | 

    @ Sean L. | February 2nd, 2011 at 1:28 pm

    May I suggest the “Intermuffler”?

  17. #17 |  paranoiastrksdp | 

    Oh? it won’t be used for censorship?

    Why do you need an internet kill switch then? Because so far, you’ve failed to illustrate a “Jack Bauer” 24-type situation as to why you’d need to be able shut down the entire net to save the world.

    And as for worries for “key infrastructure” and “industrial secrets” – last time I checked that shit is kept on secure networks (some of them PHYSICALLY separated from the net). Not exactly a cakewalk to access.

    Honestly, I want them to try it. I want them to try to bring the net down during some bullshit “crisis”. I think they’ll figure out quite quickly that folks from my generation understand the “tubes” a hell of a lot better than they do. We’ll find ways around, and we’ll make them look like fools and further de-legitimize them in the eyes of the public.

  18. #18 |  derferl cadarn | 

    I would be much more in favor of a wink out switch (kill switch is to volatile for todays lefties) that could be used by the PEOPLE to make our elitist politicians wink out whenever they start getting out of hand or a bit too uppity.

  19. #19 |  Justin | 

    Amen, paranoiastrksdp. It will be a huge shit storm.

    Does anyone else find it interesting that the U.S. government has attempted to build democracies in the Mid East for decades and has been outdone in days by twitter, facebook, wikileaks and al jazera? I know that is an over simplification, but it does seem like power is shifting from institutions to the people these days. Which, I suppose is why a “kill switch” is being proposed.

  20. #20 |  Sean L. | 

    We need an “Internet Kill Switch” to stop cyber terrorism the way we need a “Water Supply Kill Switch” to stop someone from pissing in the Colorado River.

  21. #21 |  BamBam | 

    “kill switch” = Sedition Act: The Internet Edition

    I think things in Egypt have taken a turn for the better. The only way true change takes place is violence. Power will never cede to reason. The Egyptians have lived in oppression for a long time with help from the US and their installation of puppet governments.

  22. #22 |  cks | 

    Egypt coverage: World Link TV can be maddeningly ‘lefty’, but the coverage from Egypt has been pretty good. Channel 375 on my direct tv.

  23. #23 |  emily | 

    the best place to watch egypt coverage is twitter (#jan25 is the hashtag) for up to date, live from the street coverage, and al jazeera english for live streaming video.

    far superior to the atlantic.

  24. #24 |  Michael Chaney | 

    Over the weekend, the family of and attorney for Jeremy Marks held a press conference to denounce the massive police raid on his home.

    Yes, a press conference organized by ANSWER. If Marks or any of his family are reading this – you need to tell the communists “thanks but no thanks”. They will not help you, they will help only themselves. You will lose credibility by association.

  25. #25 |  BamBam |

    far more likely to be the truth than “groups of pro-Mubarak supporters” which implies “non-government employees”. governments around the world lie and use violence to impose their will.

  26. #26 |  random guy | 

    Paranoia is right, I remember EA bragging about their new, and frankly oppressive, anti-piracy measures for the game Spore. The game had cracked versions floating around the internet 24 hours before it was sold in stores. The best part was the anti-piracy measures were such a pain in the ass that many people who bought the game found themselves locked out from playing it so they had to go online and downloaded the illegal cracks. But EA is legendarily stupid in this regard, I’m sure the government will have the kill-switch built by competent people…

    The average age for representatives is 55 and 62 for senators. At least one of them thinks the internet is a series of tubes, and the supreme court seems to have trouble with the concept of email. It is a generational problem, but since when has total ignorance of something stopped a congressman from writing and signing laws for it?

  27. #27 |  Skyler Collins | 

    On the Anchor Baby smear, a friend of mine whose family recently lived in the Middle East said this:

    “My kids went to school in Jordan and Kuwait with many kids who said they were American but my children were confused because these kids hardly spoke English. After a few months they found out they had been born in the USA to get the American passport but then came back to their home country. I knew two pregnant women in my daughter’s gymnastics class in Egypt who told me they were going to America to have their baby so their kids could get the American passport but had no intention of staying in America. Definitely anecdotal but that was just in our limited experience.”

    I then replied:

    “That is interesting Catherine. Perhaps there’s a difference in demographic here. It seems this research was focused on Hispanic groups.”

    Then her:

    “Yes, true. And the article seemed to focus on those who are coming illegally and I don’t think the ones we knew came illegally, necessarily. But the point of them coming was definitely for their children to be American citizens and the parents weren’t looking for jobs. At least in the Middle East it seemed that the parents knew their kids would have more opportunity with an American passport. So it makes me curious what the data would suggest if these situations were included.”

    Perhaps someone should research wealthier foreigners coming to the US to get their kids citizenship, rather than only poor illegal immigrants.

  28. #28 |  Michael Chaney | 

    As I said on the other site – the “anchor baby” phenomenon isn’t a smear nor is it fantastical. It does exist. The real question is whether we need to change centuries of law to deal with a problem that is most likely minuscule. The other issue is whether those pushing to get rid of birthright citizenship are making the push because they’re genuinely concerned or just mouth-breathing racists. I have my own take on that, but let me say I don’t think they’re genuinely concerned.

  29. #29 |  James D | 

    I’ll answer you Michael Chaney:

    I’m against ‘anchor babies’ because it’s being exploited and was designed to right the wrong of slavery. Right now, your geographical location at birth determines your citizenship?

    I’d also propose that the same time it be revoked, in it’s place the law should be changed that children of legal citizens are automatically citizens too. So the citizenship of your parents determines your citizenship. And it works real-time. Talk about an incentive to be a legal citizen: all your children are automatically citizens …. and even if you had an early/surprise pregnancy while in another country, your child is still a citizen. Makes far more sense to me than our current system.

  30. #30 |  matt | 

    Yes by all means we should give hackers around the world an easy target like a kill switch. Why bother with the time and money required to hack hundreds of institutions when you can hack one switch and take out millions of institutions and effectively destroy American commerce and the economy..

    From a cyber security standpoint this is pure madness…

  31. #31 |  matt | 

    1. The kill switch creates an easy target for the enemies of this country to easily destroy us. (hackers have already hacked into some of the most secure government run servers at the NSA the FBI the CIA and the DOD). NOTHING is uncrackable and that’s a fact.

    2. What if someone has an “oops” and triggers the switch on accident? or some software bug spazzes out and triggers the switch thus knocking out American commerce and interrupting every Americans daily life for potentially days? Our world relies on the internet more then you could ever imagine. Something as basic as even electrical power lines are controlled by internet servers.

    3. Then there’s the intentional censorship angle that is just as worrisome..

  32. #32 |  Comrade Dread | 

    I’m sure Chairman Joe would only want this power used for national emergencies. Like whenever Wikileaks decides to do another document dump.

  33. #33 |  Michael Chaney | 

    Here’s the problem, James D. When my children were born, their mother wasn’t a citizen. I’ve found that these arguments typically arise from people who are unfamiliar with being a foreigner in the US. Let me just say that there are plenty of non-citizen green-card holders who have children. It makes no sense to say those children aren’t citizens of the US (they’re not citizens of any other country).

  34. #34 |  BamBam |

    Some data to mull over in this anchor baby debate.

  35. #35 |  Michael | 

    Re: impulse buying.

    I don’t think there’s anything to it. A professor made this point very well in an econometrics class I took in college.

    He wrote a program that would randomly generate trend lines. He assigned two to each student and had us run a regression as if they were actual time series data.

    _Most_ of the time we were able to find statistically significant relationships.

  36. #36 |  Rick H. | 

    James D: “Talk about an incentive to be a legal citizen: all your children are automatically citizens …”

    That particular incentive is already in huge overabundance. The problem is that there’s almost no way for about 99% of the world to legally immigrate here within a timeframe that makes any sense at all.

    I find that most “protect the border” activists also oppose making legal immigration more accessible. Very sad.

  37. #37 |  RWW | 

    Man, soccer is even hard to watch 15 seconds at a time.

  38. #38 |  Pete | 

    Rick H:

    Wow, I knew it was a slow process, but… just, wow.

  39. #39 |  James D | 

    “I find that most “protect the border” activists also oppose making legal immigration more accessible. Very sad.”

    Not at all, if this loophole was closed and the border tightened up, the legal immigration process would necessarily have to be simplified and the numbers increased.

    “Let me just say that there are plenty of non-citizen green-card holders who have children.”

    Then they should become citizens, problem solved. Why live here for 5+ years and NOT become a citizen?

  40. #40 |  random guy | 

    James D, its nice that you are consistent in your beliefs about illegal immigration, but I’m going to have to side with Rick in this. Of most of the people I’ve talked to about illegal immigration, at least half of them were opposed to immigration at all. They have some tribalistic fear of foreigners and the “illegal” part is just a convenience to make them sound less like racists or xenophobes.

    Honestly I’m for open borders. As the image in Rick’s post details, the US only gives out 10,000 visas to unskilled laborers with no conections and thats after wading through a mountain of red tape. Its ridiculous when you consider that we have about 30 million illegals currently living here, clearly the country is big enough. The whole thing is just bureaucratic mess. It robs immigrants, you know actual human beings, of all the legal protections we enjoy and gives them a hard time in return for no other reason than a few pieces of paper.

    The anchor baby thing is not a problem to me, the alternative seems like it would be. I mean under current laws you’re a citizen if 1) you are born within the US or 2) born to US citizens living abroad. But if you get rid of the natural birth rule what are you going to do about children born in the US, but not to citizens? Should the baby become a citizen of a country they’ve never been to, and whose parents don’t intend to go back to? For a lot of countries the child wouldn’t even have citizenship because they weren’t born there. The whole “stateless babies” problem is unnecessary complication to what is, in my opinion, the non-problem of people trying to immigrate into this country.

    Also, I really don’t want congress to open the whole can of worms as to what should or shouldn’t make you a citizen. I don’t trust them to come up with a better answer than the founding fathers.

  41. #41 |  James D | 

    “Of most of the people I’ve talked to about illegal immigration, at least half of them were opposed to immigration at all.”

    I guess it depends on who you are around …. I’ve been surrounded a large portion of my life by 1st/2nd gen immigrants. And they are the most “follow the rules” of any group you’ll see.

    “Honestly I’m for open borders.”

    Here’s where I differ with most libertarians: It’s the order in which to accomplish libertarian goals. Do I think Open (and safe) Borders is a good idea, sure. BUT I think ALL forms of socialism/welfare in the US need to be shut down FIRST and then you can open the borders all you want. Right now, with our current messed up society, we couldn’t afford to say “hey world, give us ALL your poor people”. If this country was truly about survival of the person who plays the capitalist game best, sure (most immigrants are harder working than the average American and would come here and excel). But what we have now? Not an option.

    “whose parents don’t intend to go back to”

    (If we correct the issue with it being tough to do) What’s the damn excuse for their parents to not just become a citizen then? I get tired of hearing the crying about “It’s not my fault my parents came here illegally” … well we all suffer for the ‘sins of our fathers’ if you will. If you have better/smarter parents, you probably have had a simpler life in general … so how is the argument that “my parents broke the law, not me” supposed to make me ignore that the law was broken?

    “I don’t trust them to come up with a better answer than the founding fathers.”

    Technically the founding fathers didn’t get this one right or wrong at all, remember … it was an amendment. I obviously have the same distrust of our leaders or else I wouldn’t be on a site like this, but something has to change. What we’ve got isn’t working.

  42. #42 |  random guy | 

    See thats the difference, the “follow the rules” argument is really easy for a 2nd. generation person to make; they don’t have any rules to follow. I live in the southeast, and the people I have immigration conversations with are a bit more of the stereotypical redneck fashion. Not all of them are mind you, not even most. But the “no immigrants ever” attitude is fairly common among older white people who couldn’t tell you when their ancestors immigrated to the country, even though they had to at one point or another.

    I don’t really get your first argument; our social welfare isn’t even that good. If someone intends to immigrate to a place purely to be a social parasite, they’ll take a bus through America and stop in Canada. The whole social parasite thing is a canard anyways, the vast majority of illegal immigrants have jobs. They also tend to rent their homes, so they pay property taxes by proxy, and simply living here forces them to pay all forms of sales tax. Many of them are of such low income they wouldn’t qualify for most forms of income taxes, and its not like they’ll ever get social security or medicare.

    When you consider how much they pay in vs. how much they loose, its easier to make the argument that they’re being exploited. We essentially have a group of second class citizens that pay 90% of the same taxes as we do, but have no protection against minimum wage violations, loss of overtime pay, dangerous work environments, or any other number of exploitations. Many illegals won’t report serious crimes like robbery, assault, or rape for fear of being discovered. The end result is that the Americans that do enjoy those protections can treat “illegals” like shit while complaining about social parasites that don’t really exist.

    “so how is the argument . . . . supposed to make me ignore that the law was broken?”

    Again I tend to be in the camp of unjust laws deserve to be broken. No one is harmed by people peacefully moving from one place to the next, be it county, states, or whole countries. I don’t view the parents act as a harmful one deserving punishment or forced deportation. Its not a real crime, its just paperwork.

    You’re absolutely right about the founding fathers comment, that was just a brain fart on my part. I don’t think its safe for anyone in this country if politicians start seriously considering a redefinition of what it takes to be a citizen. That’s a power I wouldn’t be willing to grant any administration in the last 50 years.

  43. #43 |  fwb | 

    Anchor babies – my father worked for the local welfare agency here in our border city for 25 yrs. He personally knew of hundreds of cases of women coming across the border from Juarez to have children in US hospitals in order to gain citizenship and access to welfare.

    Your reference to “some” study only shows that one can prove anything using statistics. Liars, damn liars, and statisticians.

    It happens regularly along the border. It may be that the greatest numbers of illegals come here for other reasons but many come in order to gain access to our welfare support system.

    Beleive what you wish. If you want the truth, come live on the border for a decade or so and see for yourself.

    Remember: Believe none of what you hear (read) and only half of what you see.

    Legal immigration following the rules is proper. Why not review the many Jews who were denied immigration in the late 30s trying to escape Germany before deciding we should just let people go where they damn well please?