Reason Morning Links: A Shape-Shifting "Jobs" Bill, the Limits of Cell Phone Privacy, and the Menace of Arabic Flash Cards

• First there is a jobs bill, then there is no jobs bill, then there is.

• On the anniversary of the revolution against the Shah, anti-government protests in Iran are violently repressed.

• Oral arguments are scheduled to begin today in a case to determine when the cops can track your cell phone.

• Blackwater whistleblowers charge the company with defrauding taxpayers, billing the government at one point for the services of a prostitute.

• The TSA protects America against flash cards.

• Illegal immigrants continue to flee America.

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  • Johnny Longtorso||

    No Exit in Sight for U.S. As Fannie, Freddie Flail
    MCLEAN, Va.—When Charles E. Haldeman Jr. became Freddie Mac's chief executive officer in August, the ailing housing-finance giant had already consumed $51 billion of government money to stay afloat. It's likely to need even more....

    ...On Dec. 24, Treasury said there would be no limit to the taxpayer money it was willing to deploy over the next three years to keep the two companies afloat, doing away with the previous limit of $200 billion per company. So far, the government has handed the two companies a total of about $111 billion.....

    Krugman: Fannie, Freddie and You
    ...So whatever bad incentives the implicit federal guarantee creates have been offset by the fact that Fannie and Freddie were and are tightly regulated with regard to the risks they can take. You could say that the Fannie-Freddie experience shows that regulation works....

  • Johnny Longtorso||

  • Mango Punch||

    Science Times Article on a paper in Science Magazine that examines how agro-tech advancement can keep pace with growing world populations.

  • ||

    On the first anniversary of the 30th anniversary of the revolution against the Shah, another wave of protest sweeps through Iran.

  • Jesse Walker||

    MikeP: Duh. I really need to get it around my head that it's not 2009 anymore.

  • affenkopf||

    Billing the government for prostitutes might be among the most moral things Blackwater has ever done.

  • Johnny Longtorso||

    billing the government at one point for the services of a prostitute

    She's probably the most honest subcontractor the govt ever hired.

  • ||

    and the hardest working apparently

  • Johnny Longtorso||

  • ||

    That is totally unexpected.

    Unhappy

  • Pope Jimbo||

  • Rhywun||

    Racist!

  • ||

    On the anniversary of the revolution against the Shah, anti-government protests in Iran are violently repressed.


    The lyrical gift taht keeps on giving.

    Meet the new boss
    Same as the old boss

  • cmace||

    "the cops can track your cell phone"

    Turn the GPS off. If your mom has some family locator software on your phone this will stymie that. Of course she might take your cell phone away.

  • ||

    Anytime your phone is on it can be tracked. The more cell towers are around you the more accurately.

    My phone does not have a GPS that I'm aware of.

  • cmace||

    If its got a little cross hair thing on the screen its got GPS.

    You're right tho. I've seen situations where the cops were trying to locate some who was lost by using cell information. I'm not sure if this is retained.

    But the warning about what mom can do stands. One of my co-workers did this to here son this week.

  • brotherben||

    IIRC, all new phones have to be trackable for enhanced 911. Seems like this has been the norm for a year or two.

  • Suki||

    Most phones, even without GPS, still ping even when you turn them off. Need to take the battery out to be sure.

  • Maverick||

    Good thing I've got an iPhone . . . oh, damn.

  • ||

    Of course taking the battery out of your cell phone will probably be deemed "probable cause".

  • ||

    OK, GPS technology is passive (receive-only); there is no "beacon thingy," sorry Suki. GPS works by recieving the time signals which are constantly transmitted by GPS satellites. When the receiver (phone) can't "hear" the satellites, no location can be determined. You can easily construct an RF shield out of aluminum foil, or by encasing the device in a mylar bag, though removing the battery is a more robust solution.

    The GPS chip can be software-disabled on some phones. My previous phone allowed you to disable GPS entirely; my current phone does allow you to disable "location" but NOT DISABLE E911 GPS. Even with GPS, the unit must be on the cell network to be usefully locatable, since the phone has to transmit its location (derived from the GPS chip) back to the cell network.

    Phones without GPS chips can be located through triangulation of the signals from cell towers, though with far less accuracy than GPS-based location. Again, removing the battery is a robust solution.

  • ||

    when the cops can track your cell phone.

    Yeah this one should be interesting. If there's no expectation of privacy, then that should be publicly available information, no? I want to be the first to set up a web site that tracks celebrities and politicians by their cell phones. And yes, cops too.

  • S.E. Copp||

    We'd be exempt. And we're watching you.

  • SIV||

    A new report that the nation's illegal immigrant population has declined by nearly 1 million has sharpened the debate over whether to legalize those remaining or allow their numbers to shrink through attrition.

    The lede is amusing.

  • ||

    I wonder how long it will be before it is a "crime" to leave your home without a cell phone, on the assumption that anyone doing so "must have something to hide".

  • ||

    At that point, having a cell phone will not be a privelege. Not a right. But a mandate.

  • ||

    Or your Ewallet.

  • ||

  • Suki||

  • Maverick||

    He's been campaigning for awhile for the office of Douche King. If elected, by public affirmation, he will execute the duties of his office by MTV reality show.

  • brotherben||

  • hurly buehrle||

    Re: tracking your cell phone, the only way to avoid being tracked, location-wise, is by removing the battery. The 911-beacon thingy inside pinpoints your location without the phone being on. (The last time I flew cross-country, I noticed that my phone updated the time before I had a cell signal.)

  • ||

    Sounds about right. I wonder if you can wrap it in tinfoil. Come to think of it, that would match my hat real nice.

  • Suki||

    One of those RF bags might work. Like the kind you put over your personal electronic toll payer when you are using the one from work.

  • Suki||

    Ugh, did not see that when I made a similar comment above.

  • ||

    At least we're on the same page.

  • ||

    The 911-beacon thingy inside pinpoints your location without the phone being on. (The last time I flew cross-country, I noticed that my phone updated the time before I had a cell signal.)

    What wireless carrier do you have?

    Your parenthetical comment has little to do with needing the phone on or off. The difference is that some phones contain a GPS chip, so the location ID is entirely different from communicating with cell towers.

  • Cliché Bandit||

    also, anotehr reason to remove the battery:here

    Damn Dirty Apes!!

  • Sal Paradise||

    'Obama administration has argued that warrantless tracking is permitted because Americans enjoy no "reasonable expectation of privacy"'

    That's change I can believe in.

  • ||

    Calling joe, where the fuck is joe? joe? Where are you, joe, you gutless yellow turd?

  • ||

    To hel with joe, rag on me. I opined on these very pages that Obama would be better than McCain on personal liberty related issues.

    I was wrong, it didn't make a shits worth of difference.

  • ||

    Who knows what McCain would have done. Any comparison would be speculation.

    If you thought that the incoming President would go contra to the federal LEO trend on privacy, and personal liberty, then uh, oops.

  • ||

    It may only be a short step for President Obama from so many thinking "he doesn't really mean what he says to those rubes, he secretly agrees with me" to thinking "he doesn't really mean what he says to me."

  • freeforall232||

    "Who knows what McCain would have done."

    *Raises hand*

    During the 2008 campaign, John McCain was for:

    - Cap and Trade
    - More wars
    - Gun control (He received a grade of "C" from the NRA for his poor support of the Second Amendment)
    - Universal Health Care (AKA "Access to affordable health care for all Americans)
    - Dumping more money into our failed "education" system
    - Minimum wage increases
    - Bailing out banks and automakers with billions of dollars of taxpayer money

    The real tragedy is that millions of conservatives knew this, but voted for him anyway.

  • ||

    Because sometimes we'll take a "C" over an "F," particularly when the American people don't want an "A."

  • ||

    Put your hand back down.

    Only a political novice, or moron would accept a candidate's talk at face value.

  • Spoonman||

    I thought he'd reverse Bush's worst oversteps, and look at the pile of shit I'm sitting in. Fuck.

  • ||

    I loudly and repeatedly predicted that Obama and McCain would be the same on personal liberty, except for maybe a tiny bit of difference on the drug war, and that as incoherent and confused as McCain can be, he's actually better on economic issues (like free trade) than people were willing to admit and would be much better than Obama, particularly when the Democrats were bound to have a supermajority. And that he would be better than GWB as well, having opposed some of GWB's worst excesses anyway (not just war treatment, but prescription drug benefit, farm bill, etc.), which is more impressive when standing up against your own party.

    Haven't seen anything to change my mind.

    The only argument for Obama was the chance that nothing would happen in 2 years, and then we'd get a 1994 and gridlock. I have to say that that looks more likely now than it did to me in 2008; the GOP looked deader than that to me.

  • I'll Drive, Thanks ||

    From the flash cards story:

    "... police were suspicious that the student's hair was shorter that day than it was in his Pennsylvania driver's license photo. "That," Lt. Louis Liberati said, is "an indication sometimes that somebody may have gone through a radicalization.""

    Warning! Getting a haircut makes you a terrorist!

  • KWebb||

    Also loosing weight.

  • Apostate Jew||

    In the interests of allowing everyone to make their own suspicious flash cards, here are some words to learn and use.

    irhabi ... qanas ... muqteb al shaheed al sadr ... sayara mufachacha ... abuwe ... muqteb al jadriya ... hijoom ... la allah illa allah

    Impress your friends!

  • The Gobbler||

    Because who doesn't love Donovan?

  • Bob Dylan||

    That me wanna be who does me better than me?

    Colours bleh

  • TP||

    TSA spokeswoman Ann Davis said behavioral-detection officers had selected the student for screening even before the flash cards were discovered. Those officers are trained to look for "involuntary physical and physiological reactions that people exhibit in response to a fear of being discovered," she said.

    That's rich. About as good as "driving suspiciously", or "I smelled marijuana". It's a last resort for law enforcement to try to justify their actions. Fuck the ACLU, this guy should hire a real attorney and sue the balls off them.

    That was rich, this is beyond belief:

    that the student's hair was shorter that day than it was in his Pennsylvania driver's license photo. "That," Lt. Louis Liberati said, is "an indication sometimes that somebody may have gone through a radicalization."

    Or a job interview.

  • Zeb||

    Or he was due for a haircut when he got his license photo taken.

  • ||

    Behavioral-detection is being promoted and it is based in observing "involuntary physical and physiological reactions".

    I think it's new-age pop pseduo-sceince that's gained popularity with shows like "Lie To Me".

    ""Or a job interview.""

    Or court.

  • Mokers||

    Don't forget the witty romps of "Psych" and the late-to-the-party "The Mentalist".

  • ||

    Yeah, I want to see them demonstrate this over multiple blind trials with >85% accuracy.

  • ||

    Yeah, I'd like to see them demostate that with a >50% accuary.

    I think it's bullshit based off the '70 pop psych book "Body Language".

  • ||

    Those officers are trained to look for "involuntary physical and physiological reactions that people exhibit in response to a fear of being discovered," she said.

    Are these the same dumb-as-dip people staring at x-ray screens or pissed off passengers all day?

  • Warty||

  • TP||

    They've been doing that with "jam bands" for a while. A friend of mine goes every year.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jam_Cruise

  • Warty||

    Yes, but this is at least 50,000 times more awesome. Jam bands are for dirty hippies.

  • Nipplemancer||

    who the hell wants to spend days on a boat with a shit-ton of dirty hippies? no one. that's who.

  • ||

    Nope. This is the best news of the month.

    Representative Patrick Kennedy, the final member of the legendary political dynasty serving in federal office, has decided not to seek re-election, telling his Rhode Island constituents that “my life is taking a new direction.”
  • robc||

    Walter Morrison, the inventor of the Frisbee, is dead at 90.

  • The Gobbler||

    My dogs will be sad to learn this.

  • ||

    I, for one, like the oft-overlooked "Hudsucker Proxy", which as I recall finishes up with the invention of the frisbee.

    "You know, for kids."

  • ||

    No, that was the Hula Hoop.

  • Mokers||

    They started the movie with hula hoop, they finished it off with the frisbee.

  • Ska||

    Don't forget Zip's bendable drinking straw. Same engineering design.

  • Citizen Nothing||

    I'm a Hudsucker fan, too, RC.
    I say "You know, for kids!" all the time.
    And no one ever understands.

  • The Gobbler||

    Last night on PBS we saw yet another concert from the white house:

    In Performance At The White House
    A Celebration Of Music From The Civil Rights Movement.

    At the end Obama was up on stage full of performers. He was singing net to Smokey Robinson.

    A couple of thought came to mind. First, I am so sick of celebrating the civil rights movement. That was 50-60 years ago. and second, when, if ever, is this POS POTUS gonna shut the fuck up and govern?

  • Zeb||

    "I am so sick of celebrating the civil rights movement."

    Nobody said you had to.

  • The Gobbler||

    If they're doing it at the whitehouse and airing it on PBS, my taxes are paying for it. I am tired of my taxes being spent by the government to remind us how evil the blue-eyed demon is.

  • Hope-A-Dope||

    Divide and concor.

  • ||

    Correction - he was singing next to the wax sculpture of Smokey Robinson from Madame Tussauds.

  • ||

    As I keep trying to point out... the less Obama actually governs, the better. I don't think anyone here would mind if he spent all of his time doing silly things like that.

  • ||

    So the civil rights movement was over by the time I was six? Sheesh! When do you think the civil war was fought?

    This is why I don't support government provided education.

  • The Gobbler||

    The shit they were covering last night was.

  • Congressional Black Caucus||

    the civil rights movement. That was 50-60 years ago

    We will never forget! Honky!

  • ||

    Yes, you will, you racist negro socialists.

  • Naga Sadow||

    Paradox? Or oxymoron? I always mix up the two.

  • ||

    Paradoxymoron.

  • Draco||

    Blackwater whistleblowers charge the company with defrauding taxpayers, billing the government at one point for the services of a prostitute.

    Mercenaries have been in need of food, strong drink, and fornication since time immemorial. When are we going to get over our hangups about sex, and realize that if we can pay for food and drink, we can pay for sex? Isn't it better than the historical solution, where the mercenaries were just allowed to rape and pillage after sacking a city?

  • NeonCat||

    I read some of the comments at the Arabic flashcard story. Very disturbing how many "good Germans" there are out there.

  • ||

    We have plenty here. They're just not awake yet.

  • creech||

    He was detained four hours yet his baggage went ahead on the flight he was originally scheduled to take.

    Meanwhile, about a million "suspicious" types were getting on and off subways, buses, trains, and walking through malls and public areas all over the United States. Once the terrorists start hitting the softer targets in the U.S. we are going to be living in a complete police state if this over-reaction to a set of language flash cards is symptomatic of the response.

  • Ska||

    I'm kind of surprised we haven't had someone blow themselves up at a bust stop, or Jupiter forbid a Golden Corral or Waffle House. Think of the national pants-shitting moment we'll have that morning.

  • Ska||

    That would be a bus stop. Man, bust stops, that sounds kind of awesome.

  • ||

    A while ago, I saw a ATT/Olympic teevee commercial with a Lou Reed soundtrack.

    Lou Reed.

    For American Telephone and Telegraph.

    The End is nigh.

  • alan||

    A buddy of mine had a gallery exhibit for his artwork in New York when he noticed Lou Reed was walking through the gallery to get to a club next door where he was scheduled to perform. Reed made the mistake of stopping in front of one of the paintings to admire it, and Ted pounced on the opportunity, and asked him what he thought.

    "Not bad," said Lou who quickly took to heel. Ted called back to him.

    "I'm going to put a placard up and advertise, 'Lou Reed says this painting is not bad'.

    Reed said, 'sure', or 'okay' to that, so it doesn't surprise me to see Lou sell out to The Man.

    I looked up youtube to find some music videos of my friend because he is quite the multi-talented bastard. I didn't find any I like, however, he shares a name with this dude, and this video is just fucking awesomely bad in every kitschy way imaginable.

    Early Bollywood at its finest

  • ||

    Isn't it better than the historical solution, where the mercenaries were just allowed to rape and pillage after sacking a city?

    That "hearts and minds" stuff is so totally overrated.

  • ||

    He was asked if he knew who "did 9/11."

    He answered, Osama bin Laden.

    Then he was asked, "Do you know what language he spoke?"

    George answered, Arabic."

    The supervisor then held up his flash cards. "Do you see why these cards are suspicious?"


    Your tax dollars are paying this morons wages. God forbid someone would want to learn a language that only 200 fucking million people speak.

    TSA, Cabrini Green, BATF, the Department of Commerce ...
    Why wouldn't you want these folks in charge of your health care?

  • ||

    Next Up: People who learn spanish are in cahoots with illegal immigrants.

  • ||

    The TSA's behavior in this incident is deplorable in any way you cut it, but the article isn't clear whether "these cards" was supposed to refer to Arabic flash cards in general, or the particular cards for "terrorist" and "explosion". If it's the latter it's much less severe of an outrage.

  • oncogenesis||

    If it's the latter it's much less severe of an outrage.

    Why? Because terrorists are known to carry such cards as self-identification?

    *boggle*

  • ||

    Also, one wonders if he would have gotten off if he said the CIA did 9/11. As we all know, they don't speak very good Arabic.

  • Joe||

    Maybe we should ban German flashcards as well. Because Osama bin Laden speaks Arabic, but you know who spoke German? Hitler, that's who.

  • ¢||

    That's the same flash-card detainment story as it was when it happened (the article's unspecified "at the time"). I remember joke-headlining it "'Stuff White People Like' caricature late for flight" a long time ago.

    Why is it back? Not here, I mean, but everywhere, now, again. There's no new information.

    Is it the TSA outrage! white people like? They don't care about any of the others, all of which are more serious, because they don't empathize with the people the rest of them happened to? Because there's not such a blatant "Fuckin' minimum-wage motherfuckers! They're terrorized by our intelligence and worldliness!" angle on any other TSA story?

  • Don Olsen||

    Is there any such thing as cell phone privacy any more?

    Jerrry
    www.online-anonymity.cz.tc

  • ||

    Yeah, really. If only there was some way to at least have privacy online. I dunno, some kind of online anonymity thing would be cool.

  • Cliché Bandit||

    Thats is a GREAT idea sage!

    Anon Akbot

  • ||

    So, I suppose that all the people who protested the Citizens United decision must agree that cell phone location records can be demanded from those nasty corporations without a warrant. Or, at the least, the Fourth Amendment doesn't apply because a corporation has the data.

  • ||

    +1

  • John Tagliaferro||

    It's Lincoln's birthday today too. Obama kept saying he wanted to emulate Honest Abe. Don't be surprised if he tries to use everything in your comment.

  • Hope-A-Dope||

    Hater! Racist!

  • John Tagliaferro||

    You missed sexist!

  • Hope-A-Dope||

    Screw the bitches.

  • ||

    If you had wanted a reasonable expectation of privacy, you should have arranged to be born in Somalia.

  • ||

    Drink!

  • ||

    Wouldn't that be a resaonable expectation of piracy?

  • Warty||

    PITLDOWM MAN

  • ||

    Mr. Nice Guy anagrams to "Crying Emu."

  • Warty||

    He called me retarded squared the other day. I will have my vengeance.

  • ||

    "mr. nice guy piltdown man" anagrams to "A Medic Plowing Mr. Tunny."

  • ||

    "mr. nice guy warty" anagrams to "Icy Wry Argument."

  • Warty||

    "mr nice guy sugarfree" anagrams to A Rescuer Gunfire Gym. Think about it.

  • ||

    Oh, I will. I will. Don't you worry your pretty little head about it.

  • Ska||

    Possibly the most informative tidbit at reason all week.

  • ||

    < half snark
    With that cell phone story, I figure the next step will be to mandate that everyone have one and they must carry it with them turned on at all times.

    The step after that will be to forcibly implant the phones in everyone.

    "Bend over, peasant."

    /half snark

  • ||

    No forcing is necessary. Pretty much everyone wants a cell phone, the more functionality they give it, the more people will grow to need it.

    Look at the computer in general. Mostly geeks had them 15 years ago. Now many people could see living without one.

    Look at how easily, and without thought, people put personal data and communications between friends on a third party's computer system. Someone correct me if I'm wrong, but there is no expectation of privacy for third parties with regards to law. Just a privacy statement, which means little, or nothing.

    Basically, our society is already adapting to the idea that government should be all knowing.

  • ||

    I find myself not particularly fussed about whether or not cell phone location records are available to the police.

    Surveillance of any individual while in a public place has always been fair game. Any reasonable expectation of privacy ends the moment you step outside your private property.

    If you want to go around using a device that by its very design broadcasts your location in a manner that can be triangulated and tracked, you're free to do so. Likewise, anyone else should be free to take notice.

    Furthermore, the broadcast tower data doesn't belong to individuals. It belongs to the phone company, and they can do with it as they please (provided they haven't contractually agreed to keep it confidential).

    I'd feel differently about the police (or anyone) listening in on encrypted conversations, or searching your text message history, without a warrant.

  • ||

    ""Furthermore, the broadcast tower data doesn't belong to individuals. It belongs to the phone company, and they can do with it as they please (provided they haven't contractually agreed to keep it confidential).""

    Yeah, but consider your texing is done via third party systems. So if you agree that the phone company has a right to do as they please, wouldn't you agree that the companies that you use to send text messages or your conversations can do the same?

    I think the public arguement is a little iffy, in that radio waves are not necessarilly considered public. Just because you are transmitting in a public place doesn't make it public in and of its self.

    """I'd feel differently about the police (or anyone) listening in on encrypted conversations, or searching your text message history, without a warrant."""

    Doesn't that usurp your it's their company arugement?

    You don't keep ownership as your data travels across the cloud. So why would they really need a warrant if the company is willing to give the data away without one?

  • ||

    Furthermore, the broadcast tower data doesn't belong to individuals. It belongs to the phone company, and they can do with it as they please (provided they haven't contractually agreed to keep it confidential).

    That would go for your conversation too, right?

    Idiot!

  • ||

    If you want to go around using a device that by its very design broadcasts your location in a manner that can be triangulated and tracked, you're free to do so. Likewise, anyone else should be free to take notice.

    Yes, any observer would be able to tell that there's someone near your location (through various geolocation techniques), but in order to tell that it's you they have to break some level of authentication, or have cooperation from the provider.

    I'd feel differently about the police (or anyone) listening in on encrypted conversations, or searching your text message history, without a warrant.

    The data needed to match up the broadcasts that identify the handset location with who owns the mobile device is protected at the link level. It's not as protected as some encrypted data, but it's about as protected as text messages.

    Furthermore, the broadcast tower data doesn't belong to individuals. It belongs to the phone company, and they can do with it as they please (provided they haven't contractually agreed to keep it confidential).

    Part of the government argument here is that the companies don't have the right to refuse, because these are "ordinary business records," an area where the Progressives a hundred years ago blasted through the Fourth Amendment in the name of good government and the administrative warrant.

  • Rich||

    From tomorrow's story:

    He was asked if he knew who "did 9/11."

    He answered, Osama bin Laden.

    Then he was asked, "Do you know what type of numerals he used?"

    George answered, "Arabic."

    The supervisor then held up George's math textbook. "Do you see why this is suspicious?"

  • ||

    Now THAT was funny.

  • They Blow up Good. Real Good||

    Australian Farmers Told to Dynamite Rabbits

    Australian farmers are being urged by authorities to use poison gas and even ammonium nitrate explosive to blow up rabbits, as biological controls fail, The Adelaide Advertiser reported in its Thursday edition.

    http://www.foxnews.com/scitech.....e-rabbits/

  • Warty||

    Aussies are still allowed to have rifles, right? As awesome as explosives are, I can't imagine they're really more effective than spending a few enjoyable afternoons drinking beer and shooting rabbits.

  • ||

    First there is a jobs bill, then there is no jobs bill, then there is.

    If you meet the jobs bill on the road, kill it.

  • T||

    We're on the road and we're gunning for the jobs bill
    We know its name and it musn't get away
    We're on the road and we're gunning for the jobs bill
    And it only takes one shot to blow it away

  • ||

    So the Administration is saying no one using a cell phone has an expectation of privacy? What if I'm at home, talking to my wife who is at her mom's house? Both locations lead me to expect a pretty friggin' huge expectation of privacy. Get a fuckin' warrant, asshole.

  • ||

    “We feel that the American people need a message,” Mr. Reid said. “The message that they need is that we’re doing something about jobs.”

    America needs a massage; a massage, and a handjob. That's what Harry really meant to say.

  • ||

    America needs a massage; a massage, and a handjob. That's what Harry really meant to say.


    If it's good enough for Blackwater, it's good enopugh for Working Americans®.

  • ||

    First there is a jobs bill, then there is no jobs bill, then there is.

    Best Donovan reference in the history of Reason.

    Also, only Donovan reference in the history of Reason.

  • Mike M.||

    Rhode Island Congressman Patrick Kennedy announces that he is not running for reelection, and I think that means America will soon finally be rid of the Kennedy family influence in government.

  • Hope-A-Dope||

    It's like malaria. You never fully require.

    Kennedy sits at the right hand of Satan. Murtha, the left.

  • ||

    Illegal immigrants continue to flee America.

    "It shows illegal immigration is not inexorable."

    I suppose that's one way of interpreting it. Or its like rats leaving a sinking ship. Whatevs.

  • ||

    Immigration control advocates pounced on the report as evidence that illegal immigration can be reduced by restricting job opportunities and that legalization is not necessary to solve the problem.

    Yeah, time to roll out the final solution--mandatory prison sentences for the elderly, who hire them to do yardwork, and especially single mothers, who pay them for childcare they couldn't afford otherwise...

    On second thought, with all the idiots who have spouted stupid stuff exactly like that, that might not come across as the snark it was intended to be...

    Is there any question though, now, about illegal immigration as both a leading and a lagging indicator of economic vibrancy (or lack thereof)?

    If we wanted to do the smart thing, we wouldn't just be considering making the ones that are still here legal, we'd be trying to think up new ways to get the ones that left to come back legally too.

  • Citizen Nothing||

    I'm just hoping that Old Mexican can afford to hire me as his gardener when we all must flee south of the border.

  • Citizen Nothing||

    Yeah, it looks as if the way to solve our illegal alien "problem" is to fuck up our own economy as much as possible.
    Problem solved!

  • ||

    The most effective way to get people to join a government health insurance program is to drive the private insurors out of business.

  • ||

    ...a TSA supervisor asked him, "How do you feel about 9/11?"

    He said he hemmed and hawed a bit. "It's a complicated question," he told me by phone. "But I ended up saying, 'It was bad. I am against it.' "

    A "complicated question"? Sorry, I don't have one ounce of pity for this guy. It amazing me how much liberal slime will stand up for the rights of people like this.

  • Slut Bunwalla||

    Yeah, that makes me think his answer was probably something like "Well, to be fair, given how America acts like it runs the world, we kind of deserved the attack, or at least we shouldn't have been surprised, and it's kind of Bush's fault, but yeah, I guess it was bad that a bunch of people died."

    It's still ridiculous that he was stopped at all, but the hemming and hawing thing kind of implies that he made the situation worse for himself. I mean, who hems and haws when asked if 9/11 was bad?

  • Jersey Patriot||

    The correct answer is "It's a joke in your town."

  • ||

    It is a complicated question. It was a highly emotional event obviously, and many people had very conflicting (but probably all negative) emotions about it, especially knowing what happened afterwards (ie, our idiotic reaction to it). It's also been 8.5 years since it happened, so some emotions have faded more than others.

    Myself? I felt rage at those who carried out the attack, mixed with worries about how our own leaders would try to use it to increase their own power, and a strange feeling of excitement -- of which I am and was ashamed -- that something big was finally happening to us.

    And there is absolutely no way in hell I go through all that detail in the presence of a government thug.

  • ||

    How are his feeling about 9/11 even slightly relevant, or the business of TSA?

  • Citizen Nothing||

    mrMagoo?
    I think the line is: "I can't see why liberal slime..." etc., etc.

  • Citizen Nothing||

    Actually, I think the only patriotic answer would have been "Allahu Akbar, you fascist motherfucker."

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