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  • stewartm commented on the diary post Changes to MyFDL by Jane Hamsher.

    2014-09-18 14:57:25View | Delete

    I’m pre-backed up. I haven’t diaried a lot, though I comment (on and on and on…haha) fairly frequently.


  • I’m not surprised that young people feel this way because it is the truth. While it is possible to cause harm by misusing or abusing almost any substance, any objective analysis indicates alcohol use does much more harm to society than marijuana use.

    This has been known by the experts for decades. In most studies I’ve read, considering factors like addictiveness, short- and long-term toxicity, years of life/disability lost, and social harm/harm to others, like this one, alcohol easily cracks the top five, and sometimes takes the #1 spot, while tobacco usually cracks the top ten. Tobacco usually scores as slightly less dangerous only because it usually kills you when you’re older and its social harm is much lower.

    Most public perceptions on the relative drug dangers are very inaccurate; hallucinogens like LSD score much lower even though they no doubt can spur mental illness, because unlike either tobacco or alcohol they are generally not regarded as addictive. Cannabis has always scored near the bottom (as in ‘least dangerous’) of all the lists I’ve seen.


  • stewartm commented on the diary post Independence Yea or Nay? by Elliott.

    2014-09-16 06:24:41View | Delete

    England really has been a bit of dick towards Scotland (as John Oliver puts it) — going all the way back to “The Hammer of the Scots,” King Edward I, who apparently made it his life’s mission, his Great Cause, to conquer Scotland. After he whipped Wales’s ass, that is.

    As I said, this, and the [...]

  • stewartm commented on the diary post Independence Yea or Nay? by Elliott.

    2014-09-16 06:10:49View | Delete

    I’ll be the contrarian here…making a big bruhaha about changing the flag is a distraction by the 1 %. And, from my perspective as a native US Southerner, I would say that governance from far away is often superior from governance from those close at-home. That’s not just true of the South vs the US [...]

  • My observation is, does this have anything to do with what happened to TrueCrypt?

    On 28 May 2014, the TrueCrypt official website,, began redirecting visitors to with a HTTP 301 “Moved Permanently” status, which warned that the software may contain unfixed security issues, and that development of TrueCrypt was ended in May 2014, following Windows XP’s end of support. The message noted that more recent versions of Windows have built-in support for disk encryption using BitLocker, and that Linux and OS X had similar built-in solutions, which the message states renders TrueCrypt unnecessary. (In reality, Bitlocker is available only for Enterprise and Ultimate versions, not Professional or Home, and Linux and OS X do not have complete replacements for TrueCrypt.) The page recommends any data encrypted by TrueCrypt be migrated to other encryption setups and offered instructions on moving to BitLocker. The SourceForge project page for the software at was updated to display the same initial message, and the status was changed to “inactive.”[15] The page also announced a new software version, 7.2, which only allows decryption.

    Initially, the authenticity of the announcement and new software was questioned.[16][17][18] Multiple theories attempting to explain the reason behind the announcement arose throughout the tech community.[19][20][21]

    The Truecrypt Foundation always kept its membership secret, maybe to avoid external pressure (?) Maybe the NSA got to them anyways? There are several court cases on the Wikipedia site of TrueCrypt frustrating the PTB’s “right” to indiscriminately spy on us.


  • Justin Amash and Rand Paul have both been pushing back vigorously against the NSA.

    I still think his comment has merit; these guys remind me for all the world of how “hard” Nancy Pelosi was against spying until, of course, her vote actually mattered.


  • stewartm commented on the blog post Obama Should Go to Tehran

    2014-09-12 10:49:36View | Delete

    Obama should go to Tehran just because it’s the right and smart thing to do. Our demonizing of Iran is just the Israeli tail wagging the American dog, and should stop.

    All of this means that of course, it won’t happen.


  • And if you don’t think there’s a difference, then good luck if people like them ever get into that position of power.

    I could buy the argument that Obama would be less terrible than McCain/Romney overall, and less terrible than McCain would have been (Romney is less certain), but that doesn’t change the fact Mr. Constitutional Scholar’s justification for this executive constitutional overreach is even more strained than Bush’s (i.e., ISIS has not attacked the US).

    Being murderous and barbaric does not grant the US president a justification for war.


  • The real problem originated with the concept of going to “war” against something that is not a state (Al-Qaeda). I said back in 2001 that Al-Qaeda should be pursued like a criminal organization, and the target of an international police hunt rather than a “war”. This bad precedent is now being expanded, which is also predictable.


  • stewartm commented on the diary post Two heart felt questions about ISIS – by elisemattu.

    2014-09-12 07:32:58View | Delete

    Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity and greed.

    Had to amend that; remember, all these arms sales benefit the defense industry.


  • stewartm commented on the blog post Obama Relegates Congress to Merely Providing Him With Good PR

    2014-09-12 07:29:42View | Delete

    Why have a government at all?

    Insofar as war is concerned, we already have a dictatorship. Cheney and David Addington won, the president can kill people on a whim with no checks.


  • stewartm commented on the blog post Obama Relegates Congress to Merely Providing Him With Good PR

    2014-09-12 07:27:40View | Delete

    The remedy is to gut the military. To reduce it to a fraction of its current size.

    Actually we could have the same size for a fraction of the cost, if we were ruthless with contractors.

    But to your admirable idea, I’d add a) de-privatize as much of the defense industry as possible; much of the cries for bombing to every scenario is nothing but the paid shilling of defense industry spokespeople; and b) bring back the draft, so that it’s not just the offspring of those with bleak economic futures at-risk to get shot.


  • Yes, there are some really bad militants on the other side of the planet but that has basically been the case for most of history. The really big difference this month seems to be that the media decided to talk about them more, and ISIS seems really skilled at viral promotion.

    And yet no TV pundit, save Rachel Maddow, seems to have picked up on the obvious fact that getting the US back into the ME is apparently what ISIS *wants*, repeats *wants*, to see happen, for similar reasons why Bin Laden was delighted by the invasion of Iraq. They are goading us, and it’s working like a charm.

    And since when is doing exactly what your adversary wants you to do a sound strategy?


  • The red-state hold-outs for the Medicaid expansion are just a sham as they position themselves for further looting.

    And nobody can loot the Treasury like conservatives. Our political discourse, starting with Reagan, is almost 180 degrees removed from reality, during my adult lifetime progressives actually would have spent far LESS than their conservative counterparts and made the deficit/debt smaller.

    Yet President Teflon was the guy who always gave speeches about those wild Congressional spending sprees and how he was ag’in it and enough people both in and out of the media and public bought it, even though was usually Congress that *trimmed* Teflon’s budgets instead of expanding them.


  • I very well can wrap my mind around the idea that humans are destroying their habitat!

    But you can’t admit that the technology that people use isn’t determined by them as individuals. It may be technically possible to recycle a certain polymer, but if the facilities and infrastructure to recycle it aren’t available, then it will be done.

    As per your examples:

    assuming you drive a car

    Automotive transportation would not have been possible or at least widespread w/o the massive public infrastructure spending on roads, interstates, and bridges;

    heat your house

    Wouldn’t be possible w/o the spending on transportation (all forms), gas lines, power lines, etc; a combination of public/private spending.

    or unintelligibly type on a keyboard plugged into a wall outlet.

    The internet too as built with public funds.

    Using any of these are only possible because of the results of a collective endeavor, not any individual one. To get away from a CO2-producing, fossil fuel economy will require a similar collective endeavor, a point that you deliberately try to avoid seeing.


  • stewartm commented on the blog post Can you please stop torturing your tortured analogies?

    2014-09-04 08:35:57View | Delete

    And David Cameron officially becomes the one millionth political leader since 1938 to make this analogy

    Hey, cut Cameron some slack. Ted Cruz, Mr. Harvard, had Munich occurring in the *1940s*.

    Now *that’s appeasement*, given we’d already been fighting Nazi Germany since 1939 (the UK) or 1941 (the US).

    On a more serious note, Adolf Hitler could be considered the greatest influence on US foreign policy in the past century. Before Hitler, “appeasement” wasn’t a dirty word–it was the normal way one went around soothing differences between nations, just like we “appease” differences with our friends, family, and neighbors. That’s because appeasement usually works–someone is usually upset with you for a *reason*, and if you can give them part or all of what they want solves the problem. You don’t think that turning your music down because it upsets the neighbor will lead him next demanding the title to your car.

    Hitler-the always-grasping, never sated, always-demanding politico–changed that. The problem is, any concession to anyone–Stalin, Mao, Khrushchev, Ho Chi Minh, Khomeini, you name it–became tantamount to “surrender”. People forgot that Hitler was the exception, rather than the rule.


  • stewartm commented on the diary post 100 Years Ago This Week: The Battle of the Marne Changed the World by Ohio Barbarian.

    2014-09-02 16:50:32View | Delete

    OTOH, if the exhausted French and wary British had moved more quickly and exploited their brief advantage during the Battle of the Marne to the max, it’s possible the German Army would have collapsed and the Allies would have won a quick victory,

    The criticism of Joffre I have read is that his ‘counteroffensive on a [...]

  • stewartm commented on the diary post 100 Years Ago This Week: The Battle of the Marne Changed the World by Ohio Barbarian.

    2014-09-02 16:35:35View | Delete

    Your guess, Ohio Barbarian, is as good as mine; insofar as I can tell, the poster-known-as-MooG doesn’t do detail.


  • Oh, for sure. Hope and change wasn’t much change after all, now was it?

    I’ve always said that the US adventure in the Ukraine boils down to a case of imposing “shock doctrine” on the Ukrainians while while allowing banksters to loot the Ukraine’s resources and assets. Just like Iraq was about looting another country’s oil.


  • If you persist in your stupid cleverness, get used to it.

    Heh. Care to expound and explain why I am “stupidly clever”, oh one with no-previous-history-of-posting-here?

    If I am wrong, then you should be able to tell me so, instead of the obscure one-liners.


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