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Messages - LetterRip

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General Comments / Re: Uber self-driving car hits and kills pedestrian
« on: March 23, 2018, 01:35:34 PM »
Depends on the design - well designed monitoring for sensors should be quite robust.  A failed sensor should be something that could be immediately detected by a reasonably designed algorithm.

It's less failed, than malfunctioning that concerns me.  I agree failed should be readily apparent, but misaligned?  impaired?  Dropping intermittently?

What happens when a sensor fails, does the car become a brick, or does it continue because of the redundancies?

For the video sensors they each overlap so every pixel is covered by two cameras.  There is also the lidar which will give full coverage.

If two sensors disagree by more than the noise threshold, than one of them has failed and the vehicle should come to a safe stop.

General Comments / Re: Uber self-driving car hits and kills pedestrian
« on: March 23, 2018, 10:57:00 AM »

I find it hard to reconcile those two videos.  If this is accurate, I'd be willing to believe that an alert human driver would not have made this mistake.  I stipulate that human drivers make other mistakes that a machine would avoid.

The videos have different gain settings.  The Uber dashcam isn't what the Uber vehicle is using for driving/object recognition and apparently is tuned so it won't be 'blown out' by oncoming lights, which means it loses detail in shadows.  Unfortunately the new video isn't necessarily representative either (if you set the gain too high, the camera can pick up detail in shadows that might not be visible to humans).

I'm also concerned about diagnositics. While there are many conditions that can impact a human driver, tiredness, sickness, drunkness, the vast majority are detectable by a responsible person.  Tech issues are very difficult to deduce, particularly for a machine.  If a camera is inefficient, or has a arc error, how robust is the self diagnostic?

Depends on the design - well designed monitoring for sensors should be quite robust.  A failed sensor should be something that could be immediately detected by a reasonably designed algorithm.

General Comments / Re: Uber self-driving car hits and kills pedestrian
« on: March 23, 2018, 12:14:08 AM »
Here is a video of the same area, the camera is set to a different gain.  The visibility is clearly much better, based on this video - I'd think the accident was fully avoidable by the driver and/or properly working equipment/sensors.

General Comments / Re: A comedy of failures and a mass shooting
« on: March 22, 2018, 04:16:17 PM »
The other example, and that one can be pointed to as media manipulation(also in play in Ferguson), was the whole Trayvon Martin affair as well.

Using pictures of him when he was much younger to portray the victim(as happened again in Ferguson), selective editing of the dispatch tape recordings, so on and so forth.

You are wrong - his 11th grade photo ID is about the same as the photo used by the media - the only significant difference is he is smiling in the photo provided to the media - the photo used by the media is only with him 6 months younger than the age that he died.

There are some cases of shootings where the photo used was misleading - for instance the Tamir Rice shooting.  Where Tamir was 80-100 pounds heavier when he was shot compared to the photo used (Both autopsy and eye witness testimony were that he was 5'7"/5'8" and 195 lb).  As far as I'm aware though that is the only photo of Tamir that was publicly available.  The autopsy information also wasn't available till after the photo was circulated, so there is no reason the media should have known that it was a younger picture of him (he 'looks' 12 in the photo).

General Comments / Re: Uber self-driving car hits and kills pedestrian
« on: March 22, 2018, 01:35:41 PM »
This should have been a case for infrared, lidar, and other sensors outperforming a human. It is nearly impossible to see this person. The engineers have work to do.

Yes I'm interested in the lidar/radar and infrared (if any?) sensor picture as well.  They should also use two camera sensors for increased dynamic range since the blown out blacks are useless.  For the lidar it really seems like it should have picked her up far earlier.

This is a scenario that plays itself out all too often long before autonomous cars - a pedestrian in dark clothing in a dark area who clearly didn't look down the road before crossing coupled with an inattentive driver and a street not designed with pedestrian traffic in mind (there could be an on-demand stoplight at that area).

Agreed, and given how frequently it occurs we should have seen this sort of thing a 100 times already if the sensors didn't typically catch this.  So it is suggestive either Ubers design is defective compared to Waymo and others, or they had an unlucky sensor or software fault at just the wrong time.

General Comments / Re: Uber self-driving car hits and kills pedestrian
« on: March 21, 2018, 08:42:18 PM »
Here is a site that has video footage, both forward facing and of the driver.

It looks like the driver is texting or otherwise using her phone.  Her eyes are clearly not on the road for periods of time of 2-4 seconds.

The forward facing video there is maybe 1-2 seconds that you can see the biker before collision - she just appears out of a major shadow and takes two steps before the collision (video cuts out without showing the collision).  A driver of typical alertness probably wouldn't have seen her in time to have time to react sufficiently to avoid the collision.  A professional driver with amazing vision and reflexes might have been able to slam on the brakes, but definitely still would have hit her - though not necessarily fatally.

General Comments / Re: Trump just won the 2020 election
« on: March 21, 2018, 04:26:24 PM »
Yes they did change the title, and I think they have edited the article some also.

General Comments / Re: House Closes Investigation
« on: March 21, 2018, 12:17:16 PM »
The Republican and conservative response to this is amusing.  It is like they have zero knowledge of how criminal investigations work.  It isn't like Trump operatives are going to readily admit to criminal activities and instantly flip on Trump.

In most criminal conspiracies what happens is that you get the lower people on other crimes, get them to flip and get the evidence of the more severe crimes committed by the leadership.

This investigation is complicated due to the pardon power of the President.  Thus only charges and pleas for things that are crimes under Federal law but not State law are being charged rather than all relevant charges.

Criminal investigations are usually 2-6 years, this is only barely started its second year.

This investigation is moving at lightening speed compared to typical such investigations.

General Comments / Re: A comedy of failures and a mass shooting
« on: March 21, 2018, 12:01:24 PM »
Wonder what could have caused that?  Couldn't be the presence of an armed guard almost immediately ended the threat could it?  It's not so useful for the narrative if a shooter is immediately shut down.

Actually the presence of the guard was likely irrelevant - the shooter had a single clip and no other preparations.  He shot his ex-girlfriend and one other person who was present.  The reality is that most school shootings the individual only shoots one or two targeted persons than stops and waits for the police then commits suicide - regardless of whether they are confronted.

General Comments / Re: Trump just won the 2020 election
« on: March 21, 2018, 11:30:16 AM »
Though this one may not pass, and is incredibly overt, it's an example of the trade war elements that the EU uses, and that don't get the same level of attention.  They use their equivalent of the anti-trust laws to extort billions out of US companies pretty much every couple years.

What a blantant misrepresentation.  The taxes aren't a 'trade war' - this is about tax avoidance and tech companies not paying their 'fair share' through using questionable tax avoidance methods.

General Comments / Re: Uber self-driving car hits and kills pedestrian
« on: March 21, 2018, 03:19:22 AM »
Position level data, at least so far, isn't constant and perfect.  Big data does make a lot of guesses.  Route information would be a step beyond what's there today.

My phone is within the same location accuracy as the GPS of the car I'm in - usually 2 m or so.

Self drive AI will never stay isolated.  It'll connect into local and national data services that track road conditions, accidents and current maps, it'll need constant communication for updates on conditions with immediate impact on the roads.  It'll connect, all most immediately, into traffic control webs that specify red lights and government routing decisions.

I'm not sure what 'government routing decisions' would be relevant.  Again - my phone and GPS do all of this already - most cars do - that ship has sailed and is irrelevant to self driving cars.

Whereas, the idea here would lead to prohibiting direct drivers over time.

You won't be able to solve this by banning self driving cars.  The AI are completely irrelevant to the issue.  Within the time frame this will happen - there probably won't be anyone who doesn't have a cell phone that is doing this tracking 24/7.

In any event though, I think we ought to be pushing back on use of personal data generally.

Completely agree - that should be tackled via electing officials that enact privacy laws and buying privacy enacting products.  AI isn't really a factor either way.

And how will long will it stay there?  Honestly, you seem awfully confident given the history of the uncrackable becoming crackable with more advanced technology.

There have been some bugs in implementations but largely things have remained roughly as secure as predicted.  Most of the security things you have heard about - were utterly incompetents who didn't care at all about security - royally screwing up.

That's assuming that they don't include deliberate backdoors, which we know they will, you cited a few yourself, emergency overrides and I'm sure police controls.

It isn't a backdoor - it is integrated feature.  Leaving a backdoor would be dangerously stupid, and open the corporations up to liability.

Are you 100% confident that the passwords to a police override won't be a hack vector?  Perfect encryption is only as perfect as the weakest human link.

There isn't a police override, why would their be?  They contact Waymo/Uber with the proper authorization and then they do the override.  There will almost certainly never be a root password that works on all cars.  There will be a unique per card encryption key that can only be installed at the factory.

I don't always carry my phone.  I frequently have location services off when I do (not that that does any good).

You could walk, bike, etc. for the same privacy.  Any distance far enough that you would need to drive is also far enough that you will inevitably have your phone with you.

Neither of which actually works when your car is reporting its location as in your driveway.

I'm not clear what scenario of framing you have dreamed up.  Regardless, it will always be easier now, than hacking a self driving car.

By the way I didn't misread anything.  Nothing about what you said contradicts what I said.

What you had said was factually incorrect.  What I said was factually correct.

If you guys really want to argue that you should have no privacy, please feel free.

I'm arguing that even if you completely ban AI it will have close to zero impact on your privacy, since other existing technologies are far more effective in such 'invasion', and those technologies are far more integrated into our lives (and growing more so).  So the only way to 'fix' such privacy concerns is via legislative action.  Worrying about the specific technology itself is sort of silly in my view.

General Comments / Re: Uber self-driving car hits and kills pedestrian
« on: March 21, 2018, 01:34:13 AM »
Lol, so the government can already see you at will, but they'd say never, redirect your car to their detention center?

No, they can't "see you at will" - they have to get a warrant.  As to 'redirect your car' - it would be kidnapping without a warrant, and they could only do so with the cooperation of Waymo/Uber/etc.

I'm just surprised that several you acknowledge abusive data practices, and then waive your hands at the issue as if nothing can be done.  How about data privacy legislation?  How about mandatory wipes of records and barring storage?

I think there should be legal protections, I just don't think it is different issue from what already exists.

General Comments / Re: Uber self-driving car hits and kills pedestrian
« on: March 20, 2018, 03:09:48 PM »
So I think the security here would have to involve the car's internal processes being totally inaccessible from the outside, and only perhaps able to be altered by a licensed mechanic with hard mechanisms in place to protect it.

There will probably have to be the ability for remote control by Waymo operators if there is something abnormal that the AI can't handle.  This might be able to go away eventually as the unique and abnormal problem situtations become fewer and further between.

General Comments / Re: Uber self-driving car hits and kills pedestrian
« on: March 20, 2018, 02:17:23 PM »
How exactly is it irrational to believe that computer controlled vehicles are subject to the same risk?  It actually sounds to me like complete irrationality to believe they wouldn't be.

I find it irrational in that it provides little or no marginal risk.  The ship of 'constant tracking of my location' has sailed many years ago - and there are far more convenient methods for the government to get such data than via self driving cars.

Also the cars tracking data is less likely to be personally associated with you than your phone data.

Also almost every new car has GPS that constantly tracks and reports your location, the self-driving AI is unrelated to that concern.

As to data availability, google does track you, stores track, and locations and venues track you, or sometimes they just track that someone is there.  None of that information is as comprehensive as a travel log would be, you literally would be visible, everywhere you go at all times.

Your phone has a far more detailed log of your movements than your car would have.  Also self driving AI don't have to report their location or store their history (they probably will, but it isn't a design requirement).

Those records will be subpeonable, in a divorce proceeding, when your employer is looking to fire you, in commercial disputes, and in criminal investigations.  We've already seen from the NSA's actions, that if the records exist the government will collect them, which means probable cause and your civil rights are going to be things of the past.

If you've bought or driven a car in the past 5-10 years - all of that is already available.  OnStar has been around since 1996.

But you have to have access to the vehicle.  There is zero chance that self drive cars will not have connectivity wirelessly and there's no modifications needed to the physical systems.

Ah - so you are thinking the 'remotely hack into the system'.  The authentication system that needs to be cracked to do so is going to be beyond most nation states.

If you can't see how, tracking your every movement reduces your freedom then I don't think you're trying very hard.

See above.  There is a good chance your car already tracks your every movement - no AI needed.  Your phone definitely does so already.  The self-driving AI doesn't make any of this worse.

  What if say, Trump decides to put a special focus on everyone who met with a certain political figure or group, all it would take is downloading the travel records (they already have the phone records) and they could specifically identify the lot of you.

See above - that scenario is already possible with the standard features of current cars and current phones.  The 'self driving AI' doesn't change anything.

We already have a situation where the police are almost completely dependent on technological aids to solve a crime, what happens when that gets worse and people figure out how to manipulate it?

People can already manipulate it.   If I have access to your phone I can falsify a complete travel history for you.  A nation state resources would probably be required to falsify the cell tower pings though - same issue for driving logs.

Say, someone commits a murder and hacked your car to go the location at the time of the murder.

That would be far harder than what could be currently done - steal your car, run a red light that gets a photo of your license plate.
 Or renting a car that looks like your own, and forging license plates, etc.  Framing using a self-driving car will actually be more difficult.  Especially if you have a phone that is tracking you at the same time.

The first thing that's going to happen is the police are going to look at the local travel net reports for anonymous vehicles.   I can think of tons of mischief from being able to "put" someone someplace they weren't.  That's assuming that the records themself aren't easy to manipulate.  Pay a hacker, and you have "proof" of your wife's affair.

Hackers taking control of a car makes for great TV - but the reality is that it will likely be nation state level R&D to do so and probably not even then.

Or you know you could rely completely on the privacy settings of the tech company, like say trusting Facebook not to have delivered private information to Cambridge Analytics for use in targeting political messages.

Actually you've misread what happened.  A third party had a facebook app.  That app harvested more data than is allowed by the facebook TOS.  The owner of the app then further violated the TOS to pass that data to Cambridge Analytics.

Regarding privacy settings - I suspect that facebooks privacy settings probably did prevent info being harvested for those who had it setup.  Most people don't have their privacy settings such that that would be prevented.

General Comments / Re: Uber self-driving car hits and kills pedestrian
« on: March 20, 2018, 12:05:17 PM »
More updates,

the police chief has stated that she stepped off the center divider into the path of the car and based on the video footage they don't believe the AI/car/driver to be at fault.

“I suspect preliminarily it appears that the Uber would likely not be at fault in this accident," said Chief Sylvia Moir.

Herzberg was "pushing a bicycle laden with plastic shopping bags," according to the Chronicle's Carolyn Said, when she "abruptly walked from a center median into a lane of traffic."

After viewing video captured by the Uber vehicle, Moir concluded that “it’s very clear it would have been difficult to avoid this collision in any kind of mode (autonomous or human-driven) based on how she came from the shadows right into the roadway."

General Comments / Re: Uber self-driving car hits and kills pedestrian
« on: March 19, 2018, 07:45:53 PM »
In fact, I'm not sure why there's an argument that it wasn't the cars' fault.
The question of fault becomes more interesting when property is "at fault". 

The only reason I pointed out the illegal / unexpected pedestrian crossing is that I don't know the speed the car was traveling at and the limitation of the sensors compared to a driver who MIGHT be better at anticipating the actions of the crosser than the car. 

I've stopped for deer, children, smart-phone zombies as well.  Working in Ann Arbor, you know that there are certain areas where you must treat everyone on the sidewalk as if they were suicidal and wanted to use your car as a means to end it all.  (freshman move in week) 

My point was it MAY not be the car's fault in that the average driver may not have been able to avoid the accident either.  JC's point is that the "average driver" kinda sucks and K.I.T. is still ahead of the curve even with this incident.

More information, the speed it was doing was 40.  The time of the accident was 10 pm.  The vehicle showed no signs of slowing.

]Uber’s self-driving car was traveling at a speed of 40 mph when it struck a 49-year-old woman in Arizona Sunday night, and did not show significant signs of slowing down, police said today.

General Comments / Re: Uber self-driving car hits and kills pedestrian
« on: March 19, 2018, 07:37:02 PM »
My "fear" isn't irrational.  I think self driving machines don't have adequate safety controls and security.  I think they are one step away from yet another breach of your rights when the government routinely inspects your travel logs, probably without even providing you notice that they have done so.

That does sound irrational.  I think the drive logs won't be anymore or less subject to search than existing logs of your phone location are.  So it is a wash as far as privacy.

I'm concerned that the algorithms, even with machine learning, will never adaptive enough to predict the impact of all events that appear in a road context.p

Since most humans are most of the time worse than the machines already I think this is an irrational fear.  Waymo cars have been driving in the same circumstances as humans for a significant period of time without incident.  I would be unsurprised if Uber cars are much poorer drivers - they don't have near as much R&D invested and have been functional for a far briefer time period.

  I'm concerned about the impact of deliberate malicious manipulation of the code, terrorists have already shown us they are willing to use any device that they can control to harm people.  How hard is it to imagine conversion of driverless cars to the purposes of kidnapping, assassination, or just mass mayhem?

Could do entirely remote control of a car with minor modifications today (hour of engineering/mechanical work with off the shelf parts, plus some testing time) and have far more control and successful usage.

I wish they added to this media story "and here's how many people were killed that same day by idiot drivers, and here's the fatality rate of human drivers vs. AI per vehicle...".


Probably because AI controlled cars appear to be dramatically safer per vehicle mile than human driven cars.

Anything that slows down our progress towards fostering a broad public acceptance of AI drivers is essentially contributing to the deadly status quo.

And to preserving your freedom and independence.

I don't see how self driving wars will reduce freedom or independence.  Indeed they will likely greatly increase it (elderly, children, etc. - that might not be comfortable with being driven by a stranger who represents a safety risk).

Nothing about a pedestrian crossing outside of the crosswalk screams to me that a driver should run them over.  In fact, I'm not sure why there's an argument that it wasn't the cars' fault.  I've certainly stopped for illegal crossers many times, including pedestrians, kids, deer, squirrels, balls, etc.  It's not even an unanticipated situation.

Not enough information at this time to determine fault.  That said - there have almost certainly been tens of thousands of illegal crossers encountered by Waymo and Uber and other self driving cars without incident.  One of the main driving locations for Waymo and Uber test vehicles is right by ASU - with constant illegal crossings daily and I see their vehicles go by probably every minute or so throughout the day.  So just in the recent past there have probably been many thousands such illegal crossings safely navigated.

General Comments / Uber self-driving car hits and kills pedestrian
« on: March 19, 2018, 02:25:03 PM »
There was a safety driver, so it might have been unavoidable (such as a person running out from between vehicles).  Uber has suspended their self-driving cars from all public testing for now.

Apparently Trump has required administration employees (White House staffers) to sign NDA's - can they have any legal force?  I would think they would be null and void.

President Donald Trump required senior White House staff members to sign nondisclosure agreements that not only threatened stiff financial penalties for violations, but extended far beyond Trump's time in office, Washington Post columnist Ruth Marcus reported on Sunday.

According to a draft agreement Marcus said she viewed, violators could face $10 million penalties for each unauthorized release of "confidential information," though it's possible the final NDAs reduced the penalty amount. The agreement applied not only to staffers' White House tenures but "all times thereafter."

General Comments / Re: California, the Neo-Confederacy
« on: March 16, 2018, 12:48:38 PM »
In three deliberate unconstitutional actions enacted to defy federal legal authority,

I know this comes as a surprise but "I don't like it" - doesn't make something unconstitutional.  There is no onus on employees of states to provide information and assistance to the Federal Government.

If you want actual competent legal analysis see,

General Comments / Re: House Closes Investigation
« on: March 14, 2018, 01:58:49 PM »

The Dems in the House are already saying they'll reopen it if they retake the House - on what basis?

One reasonable basis is that there were a number of individuals who refused to answer questions that they were legally obligated to answer.  These individuals should be recalled, and if they refuse to answer, be held in contempt.  The committee's failure to have these people held in contempt compromised the investigation.

Also some individuals appeared to have lied to the committee, which should be further investigated.

General Comments / Re: A comedy of failures and a mass shooting
« on: March 09, 2018, 10:14:10 PM »

In many of the smaller population states, it also was interesting to see how "spiky" their data was going from year to year

that is simple statistics - samples from larger populations are more representative of the true mean.  Smaller populations will fool you into thinking there are trends and variations that aren't really there - the low years will be consistent underestimates, and the spike years will be consistent overestimates.  If you broke a big state into multiple small states you'd see the same 'spike and lull' patterns going on.

General Comments / Re: Russia and US politics
« on: March 07, 2018, 07:43:23 PM »
Why is it relevant whether he was handpicked?

Because Crunch was making that claim.

All of the evidence seems to suggest is that the DNC directed their lawyer to hire an opposition research firm, and their lawyer hired FusionGPS.  The stuff uncovered in their research is stuff likely to have been uncovered by other researchers.  Investigating Trump's Russian connections would be something done by any competent opposition researcher since Trump Jr. had made statements about the Trump's ties to Russian sourced financing.

"In terms of high-end product influx into the US, Russians make up a pretty disproportionate cross-section of a lot of our assets," Donald Trump Jr. said at a New York real-estate conference [in 2008]. "Say, in Dubai, and certainly with our project in SoHo, and anywhere in New York. We see a lot of money pouring in from Russia."

General Comments / Re: Russia and US politics
« on: March 07, 2018, 07:08:42 PM »

do you have any source that suggests that someone on Clinton's campaign specifically knew who Steele was or that FusionGPS would hire him specifically?

If not - then your speculation seems highly unreasonable.

FusionGPS was and is a well known research firm with a great reputation for intelligence gathering both nationally and internationally and is regularly used by business and law firms when they want thorough research done on a variety of topics.

General Comments / Re: A comedy of failures and a mass shooting
« on: March 07, 2018, 07:00:04 PM »

I completely agree that advocates seem to want one size fits all solutions to problems with diverse causes that probably need individualized solutions.

Many of the solutions probably do have overlap - for instance the 'gang bangers shooting each other' and 'suicide' - overlap due to not storing guns in gun safes (most guns used in gang violence are unsecured gun thefts; and child suicides and spontaneous suicides in general would be greatly reduced from guns being stored).

DV related gun deaths would be reduced from better reporting; expanding DV background checks to include violence in unmarried relationships.

Most sources of gun deaths could be reduced by a fairly good mental exam requirement before purchase or transfer that screens for sadism and psychopathy.

The age restriction idea might be fairly effective across the board (if you don't restrict it to men and women, there is a high liklihood that the women will buy it and the boyfriend will 'borrow' it)


That's a cop out.  I'm asking about those groups directly.  Is it treason to create a sanctuary city?  Would it be to direct your police force to interfere with ICE operations?

I think you don't understand what a sanctuary city is or how it works?  It is just cities where federal requests for holding people based on immigration status are ignored if the individual was arrested for a minor offense.  There is no obligation under federal law for city or state officials to do things at the behest of the federal law enforcement.  This has been the case since the founding of the country - city, state, and federal lawmen have never been required to cooperate except at the behest of their state governments.

General Comments / Re: A comedy of failures and a mass shooting
« on: March 05, 2018, 04:48:28 PM »
This however, (looks to be) a failure of the systems meant to attempt to reduce risk.  It's one of those, "If we can't even get THIS right, how can we ever hope to solve the related issues which are even harder to stop?"

I've not seen anything that would be grounds for 'involuntary commitment' or felony charges that would result in loss of the possibility of gun ownership.

Even with involuntary commitment - most individuals who are so - don't get restrictions on their gun ownership.

So there doesn't seem to be any grounds that he would have been prevented from buying a gun and carrying out the school shooting had police, FBI, courts, or mental health professionals acted differently.

General Comments / Re: Release the memo
« on: February 26, 2018, 04:18:36 PM »
DNC and the campaign paid a foreign spy in violation of the campaign finance laws interesting omission

The DNC didn't pay a foreign spy.  The DNC paid a lawfirm.  The lawfirm paid a US based research agency Fusion GPS.  Fusion GPS hired a foreign born individual (an ex-spy) who did the research.

Also the Trump campaign hiring Cambridge Analytica, a British analytics firm.

Neither of those is illegal.

The DNC however, may have done a campaign violation in that their payment to the lawfirm was described as 'legal services', where more accurately it should have been described as 'legal and research services'.

They probably broke the spirit of the law - but it is far from clear that they broke the letter of the law.

I'm all for a change in law that would require much stricter and more transparent disclosures on this type of passthrough payment.

So the Democratic rebuttal has been released.  A couple points.  First, there's literally no way to reconcile Democratic claims of the dangers of releasing the Republican memo because it risked exposing investigative techniques that could harm the national interest, with the far far more specific memo the Democrats produced.  It does seem, at this point, that such a claim was little more than a lie.

You keep misrepresenting what the Democrats said.  They feared the chilling effect on individuals submitting leads and on FBI doing investigations.

As to them releasing detailed information - the harm to the nation of letting the false and misleading memo by Nunes stand is a pretty serious harm to the nation.  Since Nunes already did the damage regarding people willing to submit information to the FBI there is very little in the way of additional harm by countering Nunes memo with fact that also does such disclosures.

General Comments / Re: Release the memo
« on: February 09, 2018, 04:07:09 PM »
I skimmed the transcript - could you clarify where you are referring to by page number, I don't see anything supporting your contention.

General Comments / Re: Release the memo
« on: February 09, 2018, 02:48:35 PM »
So we may get to see the Democratic response memo today.  Even though its been generally acknowledged as not as clean as the original memo, I note that there has been no outcry over sensitive and confidential information it discloses.

So why no takers on defending the lies about the risks inherent in the original memo?  Looks to me, like Shiff, among others, flat out lied about the security risk.  I doubt, you're going to stay silent after you have the Democratic memo in hand.

Could you clarify what specific 'lies' you are talking about?  A quick google search doesn't seem to turn up anything said by Schiff that could be characterized as such.

The security risks weren't the content of the memo itself - rather that by showing a willingness to reveal FBI informant names for political purposes it will have a chilling effect that will dissuade people from reporting to the FBI because people now they are no longer assured of their reports being confidential.  So people will err on not reporting in ambigous situation - since a false positive could result in an angry neighbor, or accusations of being a bigot, etc. due to no longer being assured that your report is anonymous.

General Comments / Re: Release the memo
« on: February 02, 2018, 01:40:57 PM »
So it has been released - Steele didn't like Trump, the DNC partially funded the memo research, and the FBI used the Steele memo as part of their support for the FISA application.

I don't see anything even vaguely concerning - if the Steele memo were the sole source, then it might be a little concerning.  The FBI recieved the Steele memo AFTER the Australian Diplomat had reported what a drunk Papadopalus had told him - that the Russians were going to give Trump dirt on Clinton.  It also confirmed what the Dutch intelligence agencies had told them about the Russians hacking the DNC.  So the Steele memo only confirmed and was supporting evidence for, not the sole source.

The FBI reportedly launched its investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 US election after George Papadopoulos, then a foreign policy adviser to Donald Trump, told an Australian diplomat that Moscow had damaging information about Hillary Clinton.

According to a report published by the New York Times on Saturday, Papadopoulos made the revelation to Alexander Downer, the Australian high commissioner to the UK, “during a night of heavy drinking” at the Kensington Wine Rooms in London in May 2016.

The Dutch domestic intelligence service AIVD had access to the infamous Russian hacking group Cozy Bear for at least a year starting in mid-2014, local media outlets reported Thursday. According to the reports, the Dutch government alerted the United States to Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election after Netherlands-based officials watched the hacking of the Democratic National Committee and other operations by the Russians, including a 2014 State Department hack.

So it was merely a confirming source, not a primary source.

General Comments / Re: Government Shutdown, Immigration Edition.
« on: January 21, 2018, 03:06:09 PM »
A compromise was offered and the Republican's refused.  So I think it is pretty easy for the Republicans to take the blame.

Republicans will blame Democrats, Democrats will blame Republicans and Independents are split with a slight lean to blaming Republicans.

Personally I think tying DACA to the FISA would have been a more astute move.

General Comments / Re: Republican Tax Plan
« on: December 20, 2017, 05:59:19 PM »

Lol, if you didn't know what was in the bill it wasn't because of secrecy.

It was a 1000 page bill with final changes shortly before the Senate vote.  I looked and there wasn't a version online prior to the vote.  There were only vague claims about what was in the bill.  It certainly wasn't available for any reasonable amount of time for public scrutiny.

General Comments / Re: Uber v Waymo
« on: December 16, 2017, 03:37:29 PM »
And this Wired article goes into a variety of additional allegations in the letter,

And here is the actual letter for those who want to read it,

General Comments / Re: Uber v Waymo
« on: December 16, 2017, 02:59:37 PM »
So, the letter alleging a bunch of shady stuff by uber has been revealed, that Uber decided to pay the author 4.5 million as a 'consultant' and that his lawyer was paid 3 million.  They hid this from discovery (I can see why they would want to - it is pretty damning).

Here is just one allegation in the letter,

Among other explosive claims, the Jacobs Letter specifically says that two named high-level Uber employees, including Craig Clark, a since-fired Uber lawyer and Mat Henley, who still works at Uber and recently testified in court, orchestrated this scheme.

The men "led Uber's efforts to evade current and future discovery requests, court orders, and government investigations in violation of state and federal law as well as ethical rules governing the legal profession. Clark devised training and provided advice intended to impede, obstruct, or influence the investigation of several ongoing lawsuits against Uber and in relation to or contemplation of further matters within the jurisdiction of the United States."

General Comments / Re: Weinstein mess
« on: December 14, 2017, 06:56:04 PM »
You neglect to mention that Franken also admitted to "crossing the line".

I didn't 'neglect' anything.  The 'crossed a line' was in reference to claims that he touched a woman's butt during a photo op.  I was talking about your false accussations of claims there was a photo showing him sexually assaulting a woman.

Here is the actual quote of what Franken said,

“I’ve learned from recent stories that in some of those encounters, I crossed a line for some women — and I know that any number is too many,” he said in part.

So you again falsely accuse him.

General Comments / Re: Weinstein mess
« on: December 13, 2017, 07:08:37 PM »

Obviously not true and you certainly know that. I said the same things about Franken as I have Moore and the need to allow for due process. You're just making things up as you go along now. :o

You have repeatedly stated that the photo shows Al Franken groping the women, even after it has been demonstrated that he is pantomining.  So yes, you believe bad things about Democrats even after there is evidence contradicting your belief.

General Comments / Re: Weinstein mess
« on: December 13, 2017, 03:12:31 PM »
Regarding allegations  - for rape allegations - 10-20% are credibly false accusations;  20-40% are credibly true accusations.  Everything else there isn't enough evidence one way or the other.

So I'm certainly sympathetic regarding skepticism for a single accusation - depending on the nature of the accusation.

Also I agree with Seriati that people can reasonably have different interpretations and remembrance of events.  Also that people will sometimes consider things harrassment that objectively isn't; (as well as people will not consider things harrassment that objectively are).

Also memories aren't static - they will change each time we access them; the changes will depend on our emotions when accessing them; they can be added to or confused with other memories, confused with others experiences, combined with dreams, or incorporate details from entertainment (books, films).

General Comments / Re: Weinstein mess
« on: December 13, 2017, 02:42:31 PM »
As you have been conditioned to believe the man no matter how many women say otherwise. :p

That's not fair - he only believes Republicans no matter what they are accused of.  Any accusation against a Democrat, no matter how outlandish and far fetched, and no matter what the contradictory evidence - he believes the accusation completely.

General Comments / Re: Are in person prison visitations a right?
« on: December 12, 2017, 10:43:37 PM »
I think they are also charging a fee for this system, so the prisons have an economic incentive.

General Comments / Are in person prison visitations a right?
« on: December 12, 2017, 06:05:26 PM »
Apparently some prisons are ending in person visits and requiring instead that all contact is via a skype equivalent, etc.

Do you think this is legal, and if so do you think it should be allowed?

General Comments / Re: Defeat ISIS, check.
« on: December 11, 2017, 03:17:32 PM »
What do you think has changed in the last 10 months that allowed this success?

The arming of the Kurds by the military.

As to the Iraqi Prime Minister praising Trump - it would be surprising if he didn't regardless of Trump's role.  The world is well aware that if you kiss Trump's ass, Trump thinks you are a wonderful person; and if you are in any way critical of Trump he will hate you and try and destroy you.  That is how you easily manipulate malignant narcissists - it costs you nothing but your integrity to offer false praise and to withhold valid criticism.

General Comments / Re: Weinstein mess
« on: December 10, 2017, 08:06:51 PM »
The hand writing  “expert” hired by Nelson and Alredd confirmed the entire thing as written by the same person.

What is your source for this?  I've never seen that claim made anywhere.

There’s no getting around that Nelson forged at least part of this.

Even Fox News edited their story to eliminate the claim of forgery.

Perhaps it’s just lighting that makes the ink colors change, sure, why not?

It isn't a 'perhaps' situation, you can see other pictures that show they are the same color.  You have to deliberately ignore the evidence to conclude they can be different colors.

Until independent experts are allowed to examine it, I’m not accepting this as proof of anything other than Nelson’s willingness to fake things to help cement her accusations - something she’s admitted to doing.

There is no evidence that she faked anything.

The yearbook has been offerred for examination if Roy Moore will testify about it under penalty of perjury.  He is willing to defame and slander his victims, in the hopes that people like you will believe his lies.

The yearbook thing is similar to his pattern with other young women,

What’s most damning is the handwriting on the card. It’s indistinguishable from the handwriting in the yearbook. Nelson and Gibson didn’t know one another, yet both have old documents bearing Moore’s signature, and the writing matches other samples. To believe that the yearbook inscription is forged, you have to postulate that a master forger somehow got access to both Nelson’s yearbook in Anniston, Alabama, and the scrapbook in Gibson’s attic in Delray Beach, Florida. And you can’t blame the Post, which revealed Gibson’s story but not Nelson’s. Only one person had access to both women: Roy Moore.

Accusations require proof.

There has been proof of the allegations.  And plenty of proof that Moore lied in his claims of 'never having known' these women.

General Comments / Re: Weinstein mess
« on: December 10, 2017, 04:56:35 PM »
They aren't "different colored inks".  There is a photo that has really inconsistent lighting that the ink color looks different across the page, that is an illusion not actual color differences.  Shots with good lighting show the same color of ink for everything.

A hand writing expert has concluded that it is his signature.

A handwriting expert has concluded that the signature in then-16-year-old Beverly Young Nelson’s yearbook was, in fact, Roy Moore’s, attorney Gloria Allred said at a Friday press conference.

You probably aren't aware that signature analysis it is quite easy to spot a traced or forged signature due to forgers have entirely wrong pressure points in the signature.  Even with photocopies it is almost impossible to fool experts.  For instance here is the result of an experiment with photocopies of forgeries, and 69 out of 72 experts were able to catch all of the forgeries.

Lindblom and Gregory Dawson of the Center of Forensic Sciences in Toronto sent photocopies of signatures—both genuine and forged—to 72 document examiners in Canada, the US, Australia and Britain. Each examiner looked for characteristics such as pen lifts, hesitation and tremor, without knowing whether or not the signature was genuine. All but three of the examiners accurately identified these and produced a list of suspect features that was almost the same as that produced by Lindblom and Dawson from the originals.

Lindblom says these results, reported in Science & Justice (vol 38, p 189), suggest that photocopies can provide stronger evidence than courts have assumed. “We have probably been too conservative,” he says. “In many instances, we can give as strong opinions as with the original.”

General Comments / Re: Defeat ISIS, check.
« on: December 09, 2017, 04:16:55 PM »

Very convenient for Obama to have laid out a plan - kicking the can to the next administration - to take action that would aggravate Turkey and cause more Russia/Turkey/Syria pyrotechnics. If Obama's plan was so precious then why didn't he do it himself?

Obama administration was going to implement it, but the Trump's team asked them to delay doing so because Trump's administration might change policy direction - which they did - completely scrapping the plan.

General Comments / Re: Defeat ISIS, check.
« on: December 09, 2017, 01:50:06 PM »
So Obama planned to arm the Syrian Kurds to help fight the Islamic State in Syria, Trump rejected that.

o on January 17, just three days before the transfer of power, Obama directed his national security adviser to hand over to the Trump team a paper detailing the plan to arm the Kurds, including talking points that President Donald Trump could use to explain the move to Turkey's president, who officials knew would be furious. The Turks viewed the Kurdish fighters as terrorists and their No. 1 enemy.

Obama hoped that his last-minute preparations would clear the way for Trump to authorize a swift assault on the Islamic State's most important stronghold, where U.S. intelligence officials say militants are plotting attacks outside Syria.

Instead of running with the plan, Trump's national security team deemed it wholly insufficient and swiftly tossed it.

Then Mattis apparently convinces Trump to follow Obama's plan.

Defense Secretary Mattis is expected Friday to detail the weapons the U.S. will begin supplying to Syrian Kurds fighting ISIS — over the objections of Turkey.

Now Trump is taking credit because the military followed the plan devised under the Obama administration instead of foolishly rejecting it as Trump had originally done.

General Comments / Re: Weinstein mess
« on: December 08, 2017, 01:26:48 PM »

Breitbart has claimed forgery, she claimed she added notes regarding the date and location.  To my knowledge that claim she has made has been that he signed her yearbook and added an inscription.  So the "To a sweeter more beautiful girl I could not say Merry Christmas. Roy Moore".

General Comments / Re: Arrests and political speech
« on: December 04, 2017, 03:43:38 PM »

we are not in a court of law - it is decietful to use a 'term of art' in a discussion that has a normal meaning drastically different from that in a legal context.  I am not excusing her conduct, because excuse in normal discourse is utterly divorced from its usage in a legal conduct.

Also even the legal meaning doesn't apply here.  An excuse in the legal sense is illegal behavior that should not be prosecuted due to circumstances surrounding the behavior.  Such as 'It is true that my client stole a bike, but it was the only way that he could reach the police in time to prevent a murder'.  Stealing a bike is illegal, but because it was to prevent the greater crime of a murder it is excusable.

In this case, the actions of the individual should not be prosecuted, not because of the circumstances surrounding her actions, but the circumstances that resulted in her discovery after the fact.  Thus you are mistaken in referring to this as 'excusing', it is odd that you as a lawyer are misusing a term of art in your own field, though I suppose that your area of practice result in you having had little call to use the word since law school.

Forgoing prosecution due to police misconduct doesn't have a legal term of art (Just confirmed this with a retired municipal court judge and a retired lawyer).

Well first, you haven't identified an illegal behavior, but second, there's no benefit here.  This is not "discovered evidence" that would not have otherwise been discovered.  There is no legal basis to ignore a valid warrant or to "declare it wouldn't have been  found."  There just isn't.  This woman was literally on borrowed time with respect to such warrant.

We have no evidence of that, and substantial evidence to the contrary.  She had been stopped a number of times over her sign by police, and the warrant wasn't discovered.  Suggesting that without specific effort it wouldn't have been discovered. There is no evidence she would have had contact with the law that would result in discovery of the warrant.  About 7% of warrants that are openned in a year are open after 3 years.

So you keep saying, though you ignore that your precedents were is a far more limited context and I am not sure that you are correctly applying them to the current situation.  In any event, it's not clear enough to make any sheriff's actions in such a context an exercise of bad faith, which pretty much completely wipes out the argument that you are trying to make.

"Any Sheriff's actions" you are correct; his specific actions - you are incorrect.  You keep ignoring his actual behavior, and focus on some hypothetical behavior.  It was a specific threat to coerce her to change her political speech.

Again, you've made a mistake.  The warrant wasn't "discovered" it was enforced.

The warrant wasn't in the information he had, it was discovered.  He received knowledge of the warrant via a tip, it wasn't information that he was privy to without his illegal investigation.

None of which applies, because a warrant is NOT EVIDENCE.

I never claimed it was evidence.  I was pointing out that the claim that she would inevitably have been arrested due to the warrant was false.

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