Does this really stop terrorists?

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nutball
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Post by nutball » Sat Feb 14, 2009 10:49 am

judge56988 wrote:Come on, surely you can see a difference between fighting a Nazi regime and using surveillance to enforce the laws in a democratic country such as the UK?
What makes you assume I was referring to WW2?
Breaking the law is NOT a civil right
Indeed not. I'm not arguing that it should be.
so how is it eroding our civil liberties to enforce the law?
Some laws erode civil liberties. Any law which deals with freedom of speech, freedom of association, habeas corpus and so on impacts (almost always negatively) on civil liberties. Enforcing any such laws erodes civil liberties.
Surveillance is an extension in policing and law enforcement so where do you draw the line on that?
I draw the line where the police (and pseudo-police) are enforcing stupid laws, and enforcing rules that aren't really even laws (eg. keep off the grass, why are you photographing that building, and so on).
Is it an infringement of our civil liberties to in fact have a police force at all, to investigate crime?
Of course not, that's a stupid straw-man argument.
After all, they have to watch people, tap phones, question suspects... where would YOU draw the line?
Phone taps require a court order - I'm fine with that. Questioning subjects - should be allowed only once police make a formal arrest (laying themselves open to a charge of wrongful arrest if they're being over-zealous). Surveillance - should require a court order.

Judicial oversight and proportionality is what I'm after.

The examples you're talking about though are targeted at individuals who are a priori suspected of wrong-doing based on other evidence. CCTV surveillance flips the whole thing around - it is (potentially) surveillance of *everybody* on a fishing exercise to spot anybody doing anything remotely dodgy. That's disproportionate as far as I'm concerned.
Personally I think everybodies DNA and fingerprints should be on record - it would make solving crimes easier in many cases, it would also help to prevent the wrong person being convicted of a crime and it would in the past have reduced the number of victims of several serial killers that would have been identified after their first murder.
Honestly you *really* need to read up a bit more about the details of the inherent error rates in those tests. While you're at it read up on the numerous high-profile cases over the past ten to twenty years in which such evidence has been shown to convict the wrong person.

Then consider that *you* could be one of the errors.

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Post by judge56988 » Sat Feb 14, 2009 11:51 pm

@nutball - I agree about the stupid laws - and the jobsworths that like to enforce them, but aren't you tending towards a straw-man argument yourself here?

We can have survellance and civil liberties as long as the government allows us to. (And it's up to the people to elect the type of government that they want) It's how the information is used that is more pertinent.

Regarding DNA testing, I said that it would help in solving crimes and convicting the right person. It's another tool to use, not the holy grail of infallibility! I know that errors can result from sample contamination, this can be reduced substantially by taking more than one sample and being scrupulous in sample collection. Defence lawyers are well aware of this and courts routinely reject DNA evidence that is suspect. However, the probability of two people who are not identical twins having the same DNA is many millions to one, provided sufficient markers are compared. Same principal of "reasonable doubt" still applies.

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Post by NeilBlanchard » Sun Feb 15, 2009 5:58 am

How do we know what the people in the government are doing, and what they're not doing?
Sincerely, Neil
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Post by nutball » Sun Feb 15, 2009 6:41 am

judge56988 wrote:We can have survellance and civil liberties as long as the government allows us to.
But as I see it that's back to front. They are our civil liberties, they don't belong to the government, and they aren't granted to us by the government. They are ours by right.

Under certain specific, carefully controlled circumstances we can grant the government and civil authorities permission to undertake certain actions which may infringe the civil liberties of a few specific individuals if it is judged that that action has proportional benefit to society as a whole. That permission is temporary in nature, in the sense that it should be revoked if the government/authorities don't make correct use of the latitude we have granted them. Fundamentally it's about trust.

I think there's a major problem in this country with the way the relationship between parliament and the people is viewed, both by the people and by politicians. Parliament exists by our consent, parliament forms a government which governs us by our consent. Right now we seem to be in a situation in which parliament thinks that it exists by right regardless of what the general populous thinks, and that it can give itself any powers it sees fit regardless of our views on the matter.
(And it's up to the people to elect the type of government that they want)
It is, but what choice do we really get? I'm not convinced there's a major difference between any of the parties, and even if there is they're only a part of the problem.
It's how the information is used that is more pertinent.
Well yes that is indeed the issue. As I said in one of the other threads here, and you said in this one, our government seems to have systemic cultural issues with data security. I don't think it's just a Labour thing either, the problems lie in the civil service and that won't change with a new party in power.

I'm not one for conspiracy theories, but I am a big believer in cock-up theories :) I honestly don't think that the government, police and other authorities can be trusted to keep an ever increasing volume of ever more personal information safe, secure and protected from intentional or unintentional misuse by those who have access to it. Much better that they don't have it in the first place - I don't trust them!

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Re: Does this really stop terrorists?

Post by ~El~Jefe~ » Tue Feb 17, 2009 11:30 am

aristide1 wrote:It sounds like a great idea, but is there any proof it works? Snopes left me hanging.

http://www.snopes.com/rumors/pershing.asp
yes it does stop terrorism. Brutal, instantaneous, non politically correct responses send the message.

Bush: Iraq funded and supported 9/11, Iraq is a disgusting place of tyranny, torture, and genocide of Kurds via chemical warfare.

Response: give them 500 billion dollars worth of aid

Iraq: factions and pissed off clandestine people

Response: thanks for 500 billion, I'm going to rape your sister now, you guys are pathetic . k thanx

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Post by NeilBlanchard » Tue Feb 17, 2009 7:09 pm

Iraq had nothing to do with the attacks on September 11th.
Sincerely, Neil
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Post by ~El~Jefe~ » Tue Feb 17, 2009 8:27 pm

I forgot, you were a head of the CIA for several years. nice to know the truth now I can feel at peace.

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Post by aristide1 » Fri Mar 06, 2009 2:06 pm

NeilBlanchard wrote:How do we know what the people in the government are doing, and what they're not doing?
And what they are not doing? Got a few years? But let's attempt to prioritize a little. What are they not doing? Getting prosecuted and going to jail. Where's the french man and his guillotine? We could drop a few in Texas, they would probably be welcomed. And W is a big supporter of the death penalty, well at least for other people.
People who put money and political ideology ahead of truth and ethics are neither patriots nor human beings.

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Post by NeilBlanchard » Fri Mar 06, 2009 6:12 pm

Hi,

The Iraq war was started by the USA on false pretenses -- George W. Bush et al lied to us. Saddam Hussein and Iraq had nothing to do with the attacks on September 11th 2001. And the decision to attack Iraq is the single biggest blunder in the history of the USA.
Sincerely, Neil
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Post by judge56988 » Sat Mar 07, 2009 1:23 am

NeilBlanchard wrote:Hi,

The Iraq war was started by the USA on false pretenses -- George W. Bush et al lied to us. Saddam Hussein and Iraq had nothing to do with the attacks on September 11th 2001. And the decision to attack Iraq is the single biggest blunder in the history of the USA.
Is this a statement of fact or merely your subjective view?
(IMHO) :wink:

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Post by thejamppa » Sat Mar 07, 2009 2:39 am

NeilBlanchard wrote:Hi,

The Iraq war was started by the USA on false pretenses -- George W. Bush et al lied to us. Saddam Hussein and Iraq had nothing to do with the attacks on September 11th 2001. And the decision to attack Iraq is the single biggest blunder in the history of the USA.
Since Vietnam or after USA abandoned agreement with Europe not to mess with Europe's business if Europe would not mess USA's after WWII.
If seeing is believing, how can blind person believe in anything?
Maturity is just not experience in life but also ability to make compromises.

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Post by Kaleid » Sat Mar 07, 2009 8:20 am

There are studies on what is best to stop terrorism.

To quote a recent Rand Corporation study:
A new study from the RAND Corporation examined how 648 terror groups around the world ended between 1968 and 2006. It found that by far the most common way for them to disappear was to be absorbed by the political process. The second most common way was to be defeated by police work. In contrast, in only 7 percent of cases did military force destroy the terrorist group.

“There is no battlefield solution to terrorism,â€
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Post by NeilBlanchard » Sat Mar 07, 2009 8:30 am

Hi,
NeilBlanchard wrote:The Iraq war was started by the USA on false pretenses -- George W. Bush et al lied to us. Saddam Hussein and Iraq had nothing to do with the attacks on September 11th 2001.
These are facts.
NeilBlanchard wrote:And the decision to attack Iraq is the single biggest blunder in the history of the USA.
This is an opinion based on the facts.
Sincerely, Neil
http://neilblanchard.blogspot.com/

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Post by xan_user » Sat Mar 07, 2009 9:23 am

"The old appeals to racial and sexual and religious chauvinism, to rabid nationalist fervor, are beginning not to work.
A new consciousness is developing which sees the Earth as a single organism, and recognizes that an organism at war with itself is doomed."


-Carl Sagan

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Post by thejamppa » Sat Mar 07, 2009 10:12 am

Terror is all about fear. Only way effectively you can stop terrorism is increasing greater fear on Terrorists. Russia and former Soviet Union had very effective methods to spread fear, so effective that even some of current mujahdeen veteran's in Afghanistan are still affraid of Russian troops.

West has no back bone to combat like Russians did. It doesn't secure victory in longshot, but it makes peoples think twice before messing with Russia. I am even affraid of think what kind of price Chechen's paid for Moscow Incidence or from Beslan. I am not completely convinced neither was really Chechen doings but I am sure they paid the price... Ten fold...
If seeing is believing, how can blind person believe in anything?
Maturity is just not experience in life but also ability to make compromises.

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Post by judge56988 » Sat Mar 07, 2009 11:40 am

xan_user wrote:"The old appeals to racial and sexual and religious chauvinism, to rabid nationalist fervor, are beginning not to work.
A new consciousness is developing which sees the Earth as a single organism, and recognizes that an organism at war with itself is doomed."


-Carl Sagan
Maybe in your neighbourhood.

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Post by xan_user » Sat Mar 07, 2009 11:51 am

judge56988 wrote: Maybe in your neighbourhood.
There's the problem right there.

Its our neighborhood. The yours vs mine neighborhood mindset is exactly whats gotten us so divided.

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Post by judge56988 » Sat Mar 07, 2009 2:59 pm

xan_user wrote:
judge56988 wrote: Maybe in your neighbourhood.
There's the problem right there.

Its our neighborhood. The yours vs mine neighborhood mindset is exactly whats gotten us so divided.
There's long been a minority that would like to see an egalitarian world - Jesus was a notable example. Love thy neighbour, turn the other cheek I think he said. The problem is the large majority who don't, or more accurately, can't think like that.

If climate change has the effects that are predicted, the shortages of food and water will make things far, far worse. You think we're divided now? That's nothing compared to what it might be like when our grandchildren are grown up. If you live someplace where the weather is good to grow crops or where you have energy supplies like oil, coal, hydroelectric, the people who don't have those things are going to want to move in with you! If you live on high ground, the millions from the cities at sea level are going to be knocking on your door. What will you do then? Invite them in or get out your M16?

People have always and probably will always fight for survival.

Richard Dorkin eloquently explains why that is in his books.

PS I'm not optimistic about the future, but mankind will survive. Excuse me now, I've got to go and watch Mad Max again. :lol:

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Post by jaganath » Sat Mar 07, 2009 3:27 pm

If climate change has the effects that are predicted, the shortages of food and water will make things far, far worse. You think we're divided now? That's nothing compared to what it might be like when our grandchildren are grown up. If you live someplace where the weather is good to grow crops or where you have energy supplies like oil, coal, hydroelectric, the people who don't have those things are going to want to move in with you!
what exactly does climate change have to do with the availability of fossil fuels or hydroelectricity? mankind is resourceful, if there is a shortage of drinking water we will build desalination plants, if there is a shortage of food we will increase agricultural productivity just as we have done since the Stone Age. you will say many countries are too poor to do these things, therefore the problem is poverty, and not a problem of lack of resources.
If you live on high ground, the millions from the cities at sea level are going to be knocking on your door. What will you do then? Invite them in or get out your M16?
this is totally exaggerated. the % of land area that is predicted to be lost to climate change is small, however much of these coastal plains are densely populated. all that will happen is population density will increase inland, and decrease near the coasts, which is the opposite of what has been happening for most of the 20th and 21st century.
People have always and probably will always fight for survival.

Richard Dorkin eloquently explains why that is in his books.
I'm sure Richard Dawkins would be utterly appalled that someone could so badly miss the point of his books. You read books like The Selfish Gene and you see in that a justification for all the selfishness and treachery of humans, when it is nothing of the kind. It is a purely genetic argument using "selfishness" as a metaphor to understand what a gene "wants" (if a gene can be said to want anything).
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Post by andyb » Sat Mar 07, 2009 4:08 pm

Its our neighborhood. The yours vs mine neighbourhood mindset is exactly whats gotten us so divided.
A rather large part of that is being "Human", simply put, people are like that. If I was given £10 million and told I could only keep £1 million of it myself, who would be given the rest. Friends and family of course, sod everyone else, I'm not going to give money away to perfect strangers, being ruthlessly greedy IS human nature, if not, your not actually human.
you will say many countries are too poor to do these things, therefore the problem is poverty, and not a problem of lack of resources.
One of the many causes of poverty IS a lack of resources, the others are, greed, selfishness, and stupidity - but yes, a lack of resources can leaqd directly to poverty.
however much of these coastal plains are densely populated. all that will happen is population density will increase inland, and decrease near the coasts
I think that they will stay on the coasts, but the coasts will move inland :)
this is totally exaggerated. the % of land area that is predicted to be lost to climate change is small, however much of these coastal plains are densely populated. all that will happen is population density will increase inland, and decrease near the coasts, which is the opposite of what has been happening for most of the 20th and 21st century.
Very true, there has certainly been a massive influx of people from rural areas to towns and cities, but the main reason why many towns and cities are where they are is because of rivers, estuary's and sea's.


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Post by judge56988 » Sat Mar 07, 2009 5:26 pm

what exactly does climate change have to do with the availability of fossil fuels or hydroelectricity? mankind is resourceful, if there is a shortage of drinking water we will build desalination plants, if there is a shortage of food we will increase agricultural productivity just as we have done since the Stone Age. you will say many countries are too poor to do these things, therefore the problem is poverty, and not a problem of lack of resources.
Oil is likely to have run out in 50 years, coal maybe in a hundred. Finite resources. I am saying that there will be more competition for what energy supplies are available. Desalination requires a lot of energy. Increasing agricultural production requires more intensive farming which in turn requires a greater input of energy for machinery and fertilizer production.
this is totally exaggerated. the % of land area that is predicted to be lost to climate change is small, however much of these coastal plains are densely populated. all that will happen is population density will increase inland, and decrease near the coasts, which is the opposite of what has been happening for most of the 20th and 21st century.
You make it sound so easy. So we'll just rebuild most of the worlds major cities a few miles inland. How much energy and raw materials to produce the concrete and other building materials will that take?
I'm sure Richard Dawkins would be utterly appalled that someone could so badly miss the point of his books. You read books like The Selfish Gene and you see in that a justification for all the selfishness and treachery of humans, when it is nothing of the kind. It is a purely genetic argument using "selfishness" as a metaphor to understand what a gene "wants" (if a gene can be said to want anything).
Apologies for the spelling.
I don't use the book to justify anything. It's giving reasons surely? As I remember one of the biggest problems was in trying to explain exactly how altruism has survived in humans when it seemingly offers no return. Isn't evolutionary biology a study of why human nature is as it is?

Dawkins writes on page 2:
"This gene selfishness will usually give rise to selfishness in individual behavior. However, as we shall see, there are special circumstances in which a gene can achieve its own selfish goals best by fostering a limited form of altruism at the level of individual animals. 'Special' and 'limited' are important words in the last sentence. Much as we might wish to believe otherwise, universal love and the welfare of the species as a whole are concepts that simply do not make evolutionary sense."

Way off topic now.

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Post by andyb » Sat Mar 07, 2009 5:42 pm

Much as we might wish to believe otherwise, universal love and the welfare of the species as a whole are concepts that simply do not make evolutionary sense."
Agreed.

It's always nice to have a win-win situation, but in reality someone always "wins" more than the other guy, and if that keeps on happening, one person will become more prosperous than the other, one will continue their greed, and the other will become jelous. Human nature as it is in reality.

If people really want to help the future wellbeing of our planet then there needs to be less of us, not more. We need to stop giving aid to those who have now come to expect it, we need to stop interfering in each others business unless it is totally devestating - not for the oil.

All of these things are realistic and beneficial in one way or another, but none can really be described as being "altruistic", its just common sense.


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