Christmas Day Open Thread

Merry Christmas, everyone. Enjoy the day and your time with your families and friends. Regardless of your religion, Christmas is a special holiday.

A big snowstorm just arrived here. I'm staying in, listening to KSPN Aspen on my Sonos, and tinkering with the wordpress version of TalkLeft I keep saying we're moving to. (Yes I know there's too much white space below the header and before the content, I'm trying to figure out how to change it.) Feel free to let me know what you think.

My favorite Xmas present: An Internet password journal. It's like a phone book but for your passwords. Under $10. I don't recommend traveling with it, but at home, it's great.

This is an open thread, all topics welcome.

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    Merry Christmas, y'all... (5.00 / 1) (#3)
    by unitron on Thu Dec 25, 2014 at 08:45:33 PM EST
    ...whether Greek or not. : - )

    We watched The Interview (5.00 / 1) (#4)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Dec 25, 2014 at 08:48:16 PM EST
    Not the greatest comedy or the worst.  Novel storyline though.  There will be memes, starting with "peanut butter and jealous".

    Just back from seeing (5.00 / 1) (#7)
    by Peter G on Thu Dec 25, 2014 at 10:41:49 PM EST
    Into the Woods, with our three grown daughters, all of whom -- happily and somewhat unexpectedly -- were able to be with us for Christmas.  Enjoyed the movie a great deal.

    I would have loved to have seen it yesterday (5.00 / 2) (#12)
    by Militarytracy on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 06:23:14 AM EST
    I enjoy stepping out Christmas and Thanksgiving for a movie, but the guys prefer a complete down day so I have to have a movie that is very enticing to them.  The computer was built and operational by 4:00.

    We just saw "The Imitation Game" today. (5.00 / 2) (#98)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Sat Dec 27, 2014 at 01:22:31 AM EST
    If Benedict Cumberbatch doesn't receive an Oscar nomination for best actor, I'll be very surprised. It'd a wonderfully written and acted film. Highly recommended.

    Thank you Donald for the rec (none / 0) (#134)
    by Militarytracy on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 11:39:18 AM EST
    Will see it over the holiday.  

    Referred to "terror" court (5.00 / 1) (#5)
    by Politalkix on Thu Dec 25, 2014 at 10:35:15 PM EST
    for driving! link

    Link (5.00 / 1) (#6)
    by Politalkix on Thu Dec 25, 2014 at 10:38:13 PM EST
    My younger sister called us last night ... (5.00 / 1) (#8)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 02:24:43 AM EST
    ... from Burbank Airport to thank us for her present. Unbeknownst to her, we had bought R/T tickets for her eldest son and his family to fly down to L.A. from their home in Portland, OR for the week, so she could visit with them and spend time with her 4-year-old grandson. It's been well over a year since they'd all seen each other.

    They were supposed to catch the SuperShuttle from BUR to Glendale and then surprise my sister at home, but their flight ended up being two hours late. So my nephew called his 16-year-old brother to tell him that they were delayed and to keep Mom at home. Only younger brother then told his mother why she had to stay home. D'OH!! (He's a good kid, but sometimes he's not exactly the brightest bulb in the chandelier -- knowhutahmean?)

    So, the beans spilled, my sister drove over to BUR to pick up eldest son and family, and she ended up surprising them instead as they entered the baggage claim area after deplaning.

    Anyway, despite the flubbed plans, their arrival still made my sister's holiday. She was hosting Christmas dinner with my younger brother and his family, so she had a full house this afternoon and evening. Tomorrow they're all going to Disneyland.

    I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas today.

    Oddly, Donald, your comments (none / 0) (#9)
    by ZtoA on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 02:37:59 AM EST
    to TL are now archived and in the future your younger relatives will be able to access them. So, oddly, our younger relatives will be able to piece together what their older relatives thought and said (IRL and online). Your sharing of some personal perspectives in your personal life and your professional life and historical interests will be so totally there for them to find and read. I think it is a pretty wonderful 'trail' to leave (if anyone wants to follow it).

    I just got a bit of $ for xmas and donated to TL - I try to spread the meager $s around. TL is one of the best 'trails' around!!


    What better way to (5.00 / 1) (#14)
    by Uncle Chip on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 07:25:34 AM EST
    spend a Christmas afternoon than at a neighborhood gathering tasked with trying to rescue a newly unwrapped drone out of a tree.

    I suspect this will become a tradition as these drones are the coolest things -- but this one will never fly again.  

    It only flew for 15 minutes -- but it was a good 15 minutes.

    Last year for Christmas (none / 0) (#143)
    by sj on Mon Dec 29, 2014 at 04:17:18 PM EST
    I got all the overgrown boys in my "immediate" family remote control helicopters. Life span was from 10 minutes to 2 and half hours (with one still on the shelf until he can play without his 5 year old wanting in). All agree that it was great fun for as long as it lasted.

    Howdy, more important info (5.00 / 1) (#15)
    by Reconstructionist on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 07:34:00 AM EST
     on dead/fake Beatles

    Wow (none / 0) (#16)
    by CaptHowdy on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 07:45:19 AM EST
    takes me back.   I Was very much "there"

    Jeb Bush ObamaCare problem? (5.00 / 5) (#18)
    by MO Blue on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 11:11:49 AM EST
    According to various media reports, Tenet backed President Barack Obama's health reform act and has seen its revenues rise from it. Bush's involvement with Tenet could give ammunition to conservatives in the GOP who view him as too moderate -- particularly those who despise the Affordable Care Act.

    I can't help but get a chuckle out of this. In normal times, Bush would have left Tenet because it's a big, soulless corporation that's paid fines for Medicare fraud and been criticized for dodgy tax practices at the same time it was beefing up executive pay. A man of the people who aspires to the Oval Office can't afford to be associated with this kind of dirty money. link

    Ironic, if Politico is to be believed the GOP doesn't have a problem with the fraud or tax problems but Jeb profiting from Obamacare will be a problem.

    Yes, fraud is OK, (5.00 / 1) (#20)
    by KeysDan on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 12:32:57 PM EST
    but there is scandal in giving Americans health insurance protection.  This cannot stand.  So, Jeb resigned from Tenet.  He made $2.3 million between 2007 and 2013 not including stock worth sever $million more.  And, he is also resigning, at the end of the year, from Barclays.  

    Interesting study on (5.00 / 2) (#22)
    by MO Blue on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 01:00:27 PM EST
    cognitive biases and "motivated reasoning."

    Basically, it's about whether police bodycams will help resolve disputes about what really happened in encounters between cops and civilians. There are reasons to think their effectiveness will be limited because even with video evidence, we tend to interpret ambiguous events to fit our preconceived biases. This is similar to the way sports fans interpret instant replays of penalties in ways that favor their home team, and it goes under the generic name of "motivated reasoning."
    ...And it turns that motivated reasoning happens way earlier and is even more unconscious than we thought:.
    Before reading this study, I would have assumed the effect of cultural cognition But GBST's findings suggest the dynamic that generates opposing perceptions in these cases commences much earlier, before the subjects even take in the visual images. link

    That is fascinating (none / 0) (#35)
    by CaptHowdy on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 03:14:32 PM EST
    and it seems to me it has implications that stretch into all kinds of things beyond police encounters.  For example this bit in the context of the speculation about the Sony Hack-

    The identity-protective impressions people form originate in a kind of biased sampling: by training their attention on the actor who they have the greatest stake in identifying as the wrongdoer, people are--without giving it a conscious thought, of course--prospecting in that portion of the visual landscape most likely to contain veins of data that fit their preconceptions.

    It actually suggests Lilly might be wrong.


    Where'd everybody go? (5.00 / 2) (#39)
    by CaptHowdy on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 03:53:21 PM EST
    a couple of thoughts.  
    I guess it pretty clear that i have a different view of the hack that some.  It's my feeling that there some things that are not understood.
    First, wanting to see a movie that all evidence says someone did not want to allow to be seen is not some manifestation of jingoism.  There are quite a few of us who, yes, absolutely will put our money down to see that.  Just to show who ever cares that we can.  If you see that as some macho acting out I would ask you this.  
    What happens when the next censorship demand is made?  What if it about news or information they want kept secret.  Do you think we should roll over for that too?  
    No one, I know of, is arguing that Spny did not screw up in a major way and should be held accountable for it.  But they did not stage it.  Seriously, I hope anything suggesting that they would intentionally disclose such explosive and humiliating stuff is a joke.
    Did NK do it.  Who the fvck knows.  But you know what?  We probably will at some point.  Which is why every one of these NK didn't do it pieces start with a disclaimer that they very possibly could have..
    It's hard for me to understand the resistance to that explanation as there is tons of evidence that they are known for this and have done it many times.  
    For my part I will continue to follow the reports and try as much as I can to keep an open mind.

    My spouse says he can certainly see why (5.00 / 1) (#69)
    by Militarytracy on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 07:33:05 PM EST
    North Korea would not want the movie out there.  The movie shows the DMZ with the border guards on both sides watching the interview simultaneously and their expressions where the leader of North Korea is exposed as a human being and not a deity.  Part of the comedic story included some close to Kim Jong-un defecting and fighting against North Korean forces to bring about the fall of the dictatorship to include anyone who would replace Kim Jong-un.  Also part of the comedic story is Kim Jong-un being killed while trying to kill the interviewers.  The interviewing team had decided not to kill Kim Jong-un for the CIA.  One of the characters refused to because Kim Jong was a human being, but he isn't supposed to be a human being in North Korea, he's a God. But the movie entertained different concepts that are taboo to even ponder by North Koreans.

    The North Korean border with China is a lot more porous than North Korea would like and what North Korea considers activist problems already exist along that border.

    If North Korea did hack in and watch the movie, North Korean leadership was very upset after that viewing and translation.


    It's pointed out (5.00 / 1) (#70)
    by CaptHowdy on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 07:41:33 PM EST
    and actually illustrated in the doc I linked to that wireless devices pick up forbidden signals from across the border.

    I didn't think it was a great movie.  But as I said, IMO it was better and less stupid thanthe Hangover.


    Yes less stupid The Hangover :) (5.00 / 1) (#71)
    by Militarytracy on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 07:44:30 PM EST
    And finally, it is no longer taboo for any of us to own up to being honey dicked :)

    Wow, just saw some of my lib (5.00 / 1) (#72)
    by Militarytracy on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 08:07:26 PM EST
    Blogger friends Facebook postings about the movie too.  Is there any tin foil left at the dollar store :)?  Everyone is in full skull armor. And none of them have seen the film yet but claim this was some sort of marketing ploy and on and on.  Fa la la la la losing it!

    Ditto (5.00 / 1) (#74)
    by CaptHowdy on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 08:18:01 PM EST
    its sort of astounding.  I am not invested in NK having done it.  I actually think it would be great if it was revealed they did not.  I'm no holding my breath.  I admit I expect the backpedaling will be fun to watch.  Fortunately for them even if they know beyond a doubt they will likely never be able to publicly show how they know.

    In another comment I mentioned the evidence that the FBI is making public.  If there is one thing I think that we mostly CAN agreen on is that the know a heluva lot more than they are telling us.  Anyone who thinks Obama would have made the statements he has made without being pretty damn sure I think underestimates this president.  


    The Obama guy has me feeling (5.00 / 2) (#78)
    by Militarytracy on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 08:50:00 PM EST
    Better about being an American.  Like many "mature" women, I put up two Christmas trees.  The small one gets decorated in all sorts of ways depending on my mood.  I did something this year I could have never foreseen 10 years ago, I dressed it in red, white, and blue.  I don't think I'll underestimate this President either :). Other evidence indicates I'm not in the mood.

    Annoying though, the Conservative people we know who act shocked a Liberal would have a red, white, and blue Christmas tree.  I'm tired of being quizzed about it, as if my daily goal is to despise my country.  I just feel better about things Americana in general.


    Statements. (none / 0) (#76)
    by lentinel on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 08:43:09 PM EST
    Anyone who thinks Obama would have made the statements he has made without being pretty damn sure I think underestimates this president.

    All he knows is what he has been told - presumably by the FBI.
    All we know is what he tells us the FBI has told him.

    I don't underestimate him.
    And I don't overestimate him either.

    If we really cared about finding out whodunnit, I would think that we would welcome and accept the proposal by the North Koreans to initiate a joint inquiry.

    All I know is that I wound up watching the thing - and would not have but for the bruhaha.


    Yup...he's never overestimated around here :) (5.00 / 1) (#79)
    by Militarytracy on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 08:51:53 PM EST
    No danger of that :)

    I am actually glad (5.00 / 1) (#83)
    by CaptHowdy on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 09:01:35 PM EST
    to hear you watched it.  It's my impression that no one took the joint investigation thing seriously.   I would encourage you to, if you have not, watch the BBC doc linked in the thread and then consider a joint investigation.

    As far as the death, as I understand it they had his head exploding and decided that was "too much".


    Well, (none / 0) (#75)
    by lentinel on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 08:33:15 PM EST
    there is also the little bit in the film in which (SPOILER ALERT) Kim Jong-Un is incinerated and we see him burn.

    I thought the movie had some excellent moments of satire - but there were also a few cringe-worthy moments.

    The burning of Kim was one of them.

    I don't know how a film would be received here if it had a depiction of one of our national leaders (with an actor made up to look like him) being burned alive.

    I'm not for censorship.
    I think the movie should be shown. Why not?

    But I can also see a tinge of hypocrisy in the righteous pronouncements about how dedicated as a nation we are with respect to freedom of expression.


    Yes, the people he is attempting (5.00 / 1) (#82)
    by Militarytracy on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 08:58:35 PM EST
    To kill use his own tank and ammo to kill him first....in the movie.  This country kills everyone and everything in movies, you name it, we'll entertain the thought.  I see no hipocrisy, and it is a work of fiction, and believe it or not Kim Jong-un owns his very own human incernating munitions....and they didn't even come from us.  I know it's hard to believe, almost impossible to fathom, but it is so.

    I just (none / 0) (#100)
    by lentinel on Sat Dec 27, 2014 at 05:28:38 AM EST
    was wondering what the reaction over here would have been if, say, Russia or North Korea had produced a film in which, say, a drone went awry and frizzled our national leader into a piece of toast.

    More lame stuff (none / 0) (#103)
    by Politalkix on Sat Dec 27, 2014 at 07:16:08 AM EST
    Why don't you tell us what you think the reaction would have been from the WH if such a film was made instead of putting forward lame innuendo?

    BTW, The US government did not make the film. It was made by SONY. So even your comparison about "if Russia and NK had produced a film..." is lame.


    Pls see my comment # 104 (none / 0) (#105)
    by ZtoA on Sat Dec 27, 2014 at 07:45:20 AM EST
    cuz I think/hope it might be relevant. This is all so not about Obama. Yes this is about a for profit US corporation - Sony. Sony (not the USA) has been attacked. And maybe for some rather good reasons. Maybe not too, because corporations like Sony have been allowed to do business like this for....for....forever.

    Well (none / 0) (#112)
    by CaptHowdy on Sat Dec 27, 2014 at 10:02:52 AM EST
    i have unhappy news.  Sonys secutiry is most likely better than that guarding most of our power grid and infrastructure.  Banking and finance not much better.  We are all vulnerable.  If you would really like to worry there are many books on the subject.. I read Clarks years ago and found it very accessible for the non technical.

    Author of the #1 New York Times bestseller Against All Enemies, former presidential advisor and counter-terrorism expert Richard A. Clarke sounds a timely and chilling warning about America's vulnerability in a terrifying new international conflict--Cyber War! Every concerned American should read this startling and explosive book that offers an insider's view of White House `Situation Room' operations and carries the reader to the frontlines of our cyber defense. Cyber War exposes a virulent threat to our nation's security. This is no X-Files fantasy or conspiracy theory madness--this is real.

    Of course there are lots of them.  Lots more recent.  All mention NK.

    Some may remember Clark-

    Clarke came to widespread public attention for his role as counter-terrorism czar in the Clinton and Bush administrations in March 2004, when he appeared on the 60 Minutes television news magazine, released his memoir about his service in government, Against All Enemies, and testified before the 9/11 Commission. In all three instances, Clarke was sharply critical of the Bush administration's attitude toward counter-terrorism before the 9/11 terrorist attacks, and of the decision to go to war with Iraq.

    I bet there are hundreds of individuals (5.00 / 2) (#114)
    by Militarytracy on Sat Dec 27, 2014 at 10:26:07 AM EST
    On the inside who have been arguing to do something about this for years and getting no place because CEOs want bonuses, not adequate infrastructures.

    And North Korea began the exposure of our overall weaknesses because a movie upset their leadership :).


    Posted this the other day (none / 0) (#126)
    by CaptHowdy on Sat Dec 27, 2014 at 05:22:21 PM EST
    Might bear repeating

    One other thought on the hack (5.00 / 1) (#209)
    by CaptHowdy on Wed Dec 17, 2014 at 07:15:09 PM EST

    and the vulnerability of our whole society, defense, power grids and infrastructure, financial systems-
    As a person who knows hackers the thing that scares me is that the people who do this, the people who are the best at doing this and understanding how to stop it, do not and will not ever work for the government.
    It's just a fact. It's the nature of the beast. Anyone who thinks a suit in a govt office is going to protect you from these guys is sadly misguided.
    A quote from a bad movie that is correct and cautionary-

    Taz 'Rat' Finch: How many languages do you speak?

    Dr. Conrad Zimsky: Five, actually.

    Taz 'Rat' Finch: Well, I speak one... One Zero One Zero Zero. With that I could steal your money, your secrets, your sexual fantasies, your whole life. Any country, any place, any time I want. We multitask like you breathe. I couldn't think as slow as you if I tried.

    Speaking of CEOs... (none / 0) (#136)
    by unitron on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 02:02:12 PM EST
    ...I'll just repost this link to Cringely from a couple of weeks ago.

    Executive ego and the Sony Pictures network hack


    That was a great writing (none / 0) (#138)
    by Militarytracy on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 07:04:39 PM EST
    Thank you for sharing

    It is a good piece (none / 0) (#139)
    by CaptHowdy on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 07:27:42 PM EST
    he should do another on what he only began to touch on at the very end.  Power companies and the like.  I also pay my electric bill online.  But I would gladly mail it in for more confidence in their security.  If I actually believed it would improve it.  Companies are vulnerable.  And that bad.  But so is our power grid.  Among other things.  And that's worse.

    The thing that surprises my cousin (none / 0) (#140)
    by Militarytracy on Mon Dec 29, 2014 at 09:04:59 AM EST
    Is how bad, almost non-existent, the security is with many private companies.  He is stunned.  Lives in a security bubble and never knew it.  The Air Force has someone attempting to hack in hourly.

    Relevant quote from a review (none / 0) (#113)
    by CaptHowdy on Sat Dec 27, 2014 at 10:09:30 AM EST
    International security experts--Clarke from the nuclear generation and Knake from the cyber generation--ponder the irony that although the U.S. pioneered the technology behind cyber warfare, outdated thinking, policies, and strategies make us vulnerable to losing any cyber contest with a hostile nation.

    Well (none / 0) (#80)
    by Politalkix on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 08:53:08 PM EST
    Effigies of American Presidents are burnt all the time. Here are examples



    And our leaders leave office when their terms are up or are voted out.

    Unlike lil Kim who can only be removed from power if he is killed...

    How crazy can your comparisons get?


    What comparison? (none / 0) (#81)
    by lentinel on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 08:56:47 PM EST
    Comparison of what?

    The Brits assassinated George W Bush (5.00 / 1) (#86)
    by Militarytracy on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 09:07:33 PM EST
    In 'The Death of a President' and we all lived, to include George W Bush.  And no sabers were rattled.

    Fwiw (none / 0) (#87)
    by CaptHowdy on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 09:09:15 PM EST
    i have seen two movies today where people were burned alive.

    Full on Holiday meltdown :) (5.00 / 1) (#88)
    by Militarytracy on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 09:10:16 PM EST
    Ha! (sort of) MT (5.00 / 1) (#99)
    by ZtoA on Sat Dec 27, 2014 at 01:38:24 AM EST
    but howdy do you even know who did the Sony hack? Just who do you think is doing the 'censoring'? if this was not the nation-state of NK then just who might it be? The cyber evidence is so not certain. This was a cyber hack like so many before this and the 'blame' of whoever or whatever entity claims 'responsibility' -- they/ that  is so very very not clear to us humans. We think we are being so very patriotic to buy (contribute to the profits for Sony and their share holders) the movie "The Interview" to watch , its funny - or not so funny - scenes. But what are we really casting our $$s to?

    One of my cousins works security IT (5.00 / 1) (#110)
    by Militarytracy on Sat Dec 27, 2014 at 09:49:48 AM EST
    For the Air Force.  I don't know why everyone is so eager to declare there is no way to tell if North Korea did this.  I don't know why everyone is so eager to declare that all the forensic investigators who do this everyday are blazing hot wrong, and the FBI is feeding our President nonsense which he feels gleefully confident to speechify about.  It has all grown just a tad absurd how people will study one of the possibilities while ignoring all other evidence :)

    Question please, but it has gone far beyond that and is now out in the weeds of sheer make believe.  I enjoy make believe.  I am entertained by it.  Make believe is not facts though on this plane.


    MT, but so so very many people do (none / 0) (#144)
    by ZtoA on Tue Dec 30, 2014 at 08:44:05 PM EST
    cyber security at very high levels. I think at least one hacker group has come out and said the FBI conclusions are "idiots". Bits of code are actually rather impossible to trace. Lulz did get a couple of their members caught, but not all, and certainly most black-hat hackers are undetected. Plus LulzSec were caught in 2011 (I think) and they are (if they are active) even more sophisticated now.

    Just having some lines of code that NK DID write several years ago and have long ago been leaked, does not mean that NK did this hack - or these hacks. It could just as well (and more likely) that someone(s) want it to look like NK or anywhere else but them. If it could be traced it will take some time and it is too quick (IMO) to come out now, at this early stage, and say one "believes" NK, and only NK did this.

    Someone should sick Sabu onto this, if he is willing. Or Topiary. (former LulzSec members). I started getting interested in malware when Wired did such an outstanding article on Stuxnet in 2011.


    I think it is fine to question (none / 0) (#145)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Dec 30, 2014 at 11:04:49 PM EST
    But I do not assume the FBI investigators only have "bits of code" that they are attempting to attribute to North Korea.

    As to questioning the powers that be, questioning is what incentivizes them to be accountable.  If this were Dubya's FBI also, I would be much more skeptical.  We are six years into an Obama administration and he has different standards he demands of those briefing him.

    I am willing to hear all out, but at this point I'm still with Obama's FBI.


    I'm trying not to draw Muhammad (none / 0) (#89)
    by Militarytracy on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 09:14:38 PM EST
    Or throw a crucifix in a jar and pee in it :)

    You just (none / 0) (#101)
    by lentinel on Sat Dec 27, 2014 at 05:31:42 AM EST
    reminded me of the holy stink surrounding the exhibition of that lovely piece of work by Mapplethorpe.

    Comparisons between USA and NK (none / 0) (#85)
    by Politalkix on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 09:05:06 PM EST
    regarding freedom of expression.

    These were your own lines-"But I can also see a tinge of hypocrisy in the righteous pronouncements about how dedicated as a nation we are with respect to freedom of expression."


    No... (none / 0) (#102)
    by lentinel on Sat Dec 27, 2014 at 05:37:21 AM EST
    You did not read very carefully.

    The comparison, if one is to be made, is between cries for freedom of expression from the upper echelons of government when it comes to a depiction of a leader of a country on our axis of evil list getting burned alive, and a depiction of the same were it to be of, say, the POTUS. And, add to the mix, that the latter formulation were concocted in one of them Commie countries....

    Yee Hah!


    Civil tongues? One of my faves (5.00 / 2) (#108)
    by Militarytracy on Sat Dec 27, 2014 at 09:40:33 AM EST
    Strawmen upset if North Korea entertained assassinating our President (cuz I'm certain they never have)?  Not one single novel notion that hasn't already been deployed numerous times in debate while arging to curtail freedom of speech and expression.

    I never want it curtailed.  You know why?  Tolerance is a muscle that if not daily exercised and feeling a twang of pain breaks down, and the neuropathways to victimhood grow dense instead.  And then the ability to extrapolate begins to expire, tangled in atrophied neurons. No phucking thanks :) No atrophied society for me!

    Looking for a password manager. Any advice? (5.00 / 1) (#119)
    by caseyOR on Sat Dec 27, 2014 at 12:50:24 PM EST
    Jeralyn's comment about her new password diary got me to thinking that I really need a better way to manage my passwords and logins.

    I am skeptical about using the cloud. iCloud seems no better protected from hacks a than any other cloud service. So, I am looking for something with heavy encryption that requires me to only memorize one master password.

    I am totally Apple. MacBook, iPhone, iPad. So, i would something that works with all of my devices.

    Any recommendations?

    Casey, I have used and dropped (none / 0) (#124)
    by fishcamp on Sat Dec 27, 2014 at 03:35:36 PM EST
    iCloud three times now, and am not going back. They are terrible.  I'v always used 1Password, and like them a lot.  My  last two AMX cards have ben cloned, via phishing,  and used in Canada, so I really don't know what's safe anymore.  I do know 1Password is very secure, and easy to use.  Good luck and Go Ducks.

    Thanks, fishcamp. (none / 0) (#130)
    by caseyOR on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 01:26:15 AM EST
    I will check out 1Passport.

    And,yes, GO, DUCKS!!!!


    casey, it's 1Password, not Passport. :) (none / 0) (#132)
    by fishcamp on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 07:25:38 AM EST
    New and Improved Intelligence (5.00 / 1) (#123)
    by KeysDan on Sat Dec 27, 2014 at 02:18:14 PM EST
    Agreement.  South Korea, US and Japan will sign a trilateral intelligence agreement on Monday so and to better cope with North Korea's increasing military threats.   South Korean officials will gain access to Japanese intelligence assets to boost its surveillance of North Korea.

    The defense ministry in Seoul claimed that sudden military provocation by North Korea was possible at anytime.  The ministry also said that North Korea now has the capability to strike the US mainland as well as South Korea and Japan.

    South Korea and Japan each have separate intelligence sharing agreements with the US, but there is no pact between Seoul and Tokyo due to Japanese colonial history and disputes over territories.  An attempted agreement was aborted in 2012 at the last minute because of South Korean backlash.  The environment for the agreement is hoped to be more conducive this time.

    In other news, the Japanese Prime Minister, Shinzo Abe, has indicated a continued quest of his right wing agenda to change the Japanese constitution in place since 1945.  Article 9 renounces (forever) war as a sovereign right of the nation.  Due to the hurdles to such a change, Abe has re-interpreted Article 9 to allow for "collective defense" to engage militarily if forces of an allied country are attacked.  

    The US has long worked on improved relationships with North Korea with, perhaps, the most promising results associated with Secretary Madeline Albright's unprecedented visit (Oct 2000) with Kim Jong-11 in Pyongyang.  Secretary Albright was the highest official to visit North Korea.

    Kim indicated that he was ending testing of Taepo Dong-1 balllistic missile and the progress made led to Mme. Albright's recommendation that President Clinton visit Pyongyang before the end of his term to continue work on improved relations.

    Clinton, on December 28, 2000, announced that he would not go owing to insufficient time to complete the work; Sandy Berger, his national security advisor, indicated that the presidential election dispute impacted the decision given the "potential constitutional crisis."  At the time,  there was disappointment in some quarters, feeling that an opportunity was being missed--if only to keep on with dialog and negotiations.

    The Bush Administration was not interested in continued negotiations, apparently, overcome with preconditions, verifications and other matters.  In a March 7, 2001 NYT op ed, Wendy Sherman, advisor to Clinton, wrote that a deal to eliminate medium/long range missiles and end their exports, was "tantalizingly close."

    Zorba (none / 0) (#1)
    by CaptHowdy on Thu Dec 25, 2014 at 05:05:16 PM EST
    i am absolutely stuffed with baklava and dipples

    I have no idea if I spelled either of those correctly but I thought of you.

    Well, in English, (5.00 / 2) (#2)
    by Zorba on Thu Dec 25, 2014 at 06:04:59 PM EST
    it's hard to spell anything in Greek, really, since it's a different alphabet.
    But "baklava" is generally accepted in English.
    The other is usually spelled, in English, "diples."  You were very, very close.
    Καλά Χριστούγεννα, Howdy.  (Merry Christmas, in Greek.)

    Sony hack(s) (none / 0) (#10)
    by ZtoA on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 02:54:38 AM EST

    I don't know why, but I find this hack(s) totally fascinating. Just sitting back ( two months after a serious breach of my 'company of 1' cyber breach and the many late night hours spent to try to get that malware off my laptop and my desktop with my 'computer guy' and after having to cancel my credit cards since this info was in danger after the security breach).

    I cannot hardly believe that a major corporation, which should employ serious security IT people, and the United States government simply say they "believe" that the nation-state of NK is responsible for 100% of the hack(s). I mean WTF?? Do they WANT to inflame some situation?  

    Even to me, a 'so non tech' person, can easily see that this is way more complicated than some simple blame thing. I feel like this is re-visiting 2002-3 when W said that 9/11 and AQ was all Sadam's fault and then the US had to invade Iraq.



    Crisi mode (none / 0) (#11)
    by Repack Rider on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 05:27:21 AM EST
    I suspect that once it became clear that Sony had been compromised, the attorneys and the PR people went into a huddle and came up with a public relations solution to an IT problem.

    Blame North Korea.

    Nobody likes the NKs.  Nobody believes them. They will not show up on CNN to defend themselves.


    We blame them for the incident, and "bravely" make the film available to the paying public, knowing the "threat" is not real.


    Golf clap.


    Geopolitical lunacy, media (5.00 / 1) (#23)
    by KeysDan on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 01:08:22 PM EST
    craziness, and irresponsibility have been misshaped into a defense of freedom of speech and a symbol of patriotism.  Moviegoers  defy the Dictator of North Korea and obey the dictates of Hype.

    Going unnoticed, it seems, is that Sony made a business decision to make the movie and another one to withhold distribution.   There was no government censorship or suppression of free speech--indeed, the opposite. The corporation, Sony, while a Romney person, is under no obligation to support free speech if doing so would either help or harm business.  Although, Hollywood is no stranger to production codes, such as Hays or the Legion of Decency.

    The  movie is just a lot of fun; a screwball comedy that  happens to assassinate Kim Jong un at the behest of the CIA.  The brutal Dear Leader no doubt can take a joke like the best of them.  Oops, wrong call.

    But, we won.  The US government will teach them a lesson not to mess with our right to see a movie by Sony.  The response will be, apparently, more nuanced than the banana wars when we sent in the Marines to protect the business interests of United Fruit. And, that's all to the good.

    It is now back to business as usual but with a political stand.  Some movie goers are donning red, white and blue costuming. Some theaters are selling souvenir soft drink cups shaped like rockets--for a $6 premium over the standard drink price.  Tickets are following the direction of a fired rocket: up to $24.  And, digital pirating is in full swing.

    To the cheers of audiences, a recording has been added to "Interview" by Seth Rogen: Thank you America.   No joke.


    This could catch on (5.00 / 2) (#26)
    by MO Blue on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 01:31:14 PM EST
    An entire new industry could be created. Studios can now turn a flop into a real cash cow by running a PR campaign stating that a country on our enemy list has made threats against releasing the film. The opportunities are endless for increasing film revenue and marketing film related products.

    Yes, no objection (5.00 / 1) (#29)
    by KeysDan on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 02:26:38 PM EST
    to Studios trying to perfume their messes, but I would argue for something a little less geopolitically dramatic and potentially less dangerous.   Probably, "Interview" could have dug itself out just as well by including James Franco full-frontal.  Gawkers may flock to the multiplex despite the fact that the movie sucks. It would have the makings of a modern blockbuster.  The malls would be jammed.   But, as with other disasters, the police could just direct the crowds to move on, nothing to see here.    

    I can see where you would (5.00 / 2) (#34)
    by MO Blue on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 03:13:37 PM EST
    argue for something a little less geopolitically dramatic and potentially less dangerous.

    OTOH, I'm not sure that James Franco's full-frontal has the same marketing appeal to a large segment of the population as being able "spit in the eye" of one of the "bad guys" like Kim Jong Un and to skate on the edge of another war. Being able to be an arm chair warrior wearing your uniform of red, white and blue, and swagging about with we'll show those axial of evil guys what 'mericans are made of. Can't you just feel the adrenalin rush?

    Aside: Do you ever feel that you are living in alternative universe based on the plot of a bad spaghetti western when you hear  all the talk about bad guys vs good buys?  


    Overreaction (5.00 / 1) (#38)
    by Politalkix on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 03:40:49 PM EST
    "and to skate on the edge of another war. Being able to be an arm chair warrior wearing your uniform of red, white and blue, and swagging about with we'll show those axial of evil guys what 'mericans are made of. Can't you just feel the adrenalin rush?"

    Isn't this a case of imagination run wild? It was not even called a cyberwar, forget about a real war. The term that was used was "cyber-vandalism".

    Even if you assume for the sake of argument that the military-industrial complex is attempting to lead us to war with NK, an actual war will never occur. South Korea and Japan would never allow it as the effects will be ruinous for both countries and big corporations based there (Samsung, SONY, Hyundai, etc).


    This is correct (none / 0) (#40)
    by CaptHowdy on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 03:54:20 PM EST
    I was not talking about what the (none / 0) (#46)
    by MO Blue on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 04:18:28 PM EST
    military-industrial complex was attempting to do. I was talking about the people as KeysDan so aptly put it:

    It is just the (Mr.)  Lindsey-come-latelies who found lurking  in  the "Interview" affair, the American way.

    If you haven't seen the media in action or haven't met arm chair warriors whose one reaction to actions by other countries is to bomb them into oblivion, then I suggest that you haven't paid attention.


    Their responses are nothing (5.00 / 1) (#47)
    by CaptHowdy on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 04:22:28 PM EST
    if not predictable.  Fortunately it's not his decision.  IMO Obama has been perfect on this.  He has done no saber rattling.

    Yes, but the (5.00 / 1) (#41)
    by KeysDan on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 03:57:58 PM EST
    red, white and blue arm chair warriors were not likely the ones who would have gone out to the multiplex to take this turkey in.  As a saner way out, Sony could have reduced their financial exposure with increased Franco exposure.  It is just the (Mr.)  Lindsey-come-latelies who found lurking  in  the "Interview" affair, the American way.  Although birth day-wear would be subject to much more disapproval than running the risk of war.

    Dan (none / 0) (#42)
    by CaptHowdy on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 04:00:46 PM EST
    you are a very smart guy.  Do you seriously think there is the smallest possibility of war with North Korea?  
    I admit I have not been following miss Lindsey and the peanut gallery.  So please don't ask me or any reasonable person to answer for that.

    Capt. I did not mean to infer (5.00 / 1) (#48)
    by MO Blue on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 04:24:59 PM EST
    that we were going to war over this incident. So I hope that you did not take my comment that way. I was talking about some of the people in our country and their reaction to this incident.  

    You must know people in your neck of the woods whose idea of patriotism is to don their red, white and blue and talk about the solution to the mess in the ME, N. Korea etc. is to stop playing around and just bomb them all into oblivion. Often the same type of logic is applied to the problems here at home as well  


    Of course I know (none / 0) (#49)
    by CaptHowdy on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 04:32:30 PM EST
    but honestly, from what o can tell, they are barely aware of it.  Now, should FOX decide its a meme we all know what could happen.  But I doubt that.  The "wronged" are no one they care about.  They hate Hollywood, Seth Rogan, and political comedy.  Since it's almost always at their expense.  
    They would only care if someone produced evidence The Black Panthers were behind the attack.

    At this point no one in my zip code seems to care about it but me.


    Ah, yes. Fox News. (5.00 / 1) (#54)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 04:52:52 PM EST
    I think you'll like this, Cap'n, from "The Kids in the Hall" back in 1992. Dave Foley flawlessly mocked Billy O'Reilly, and did it years before Fox News ever hit the cable TV airwaves.

    The US government thinks (5.00 / 1) (#52)
    by KeysDan on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 04:41:07 PM EST
    they are a military threat to our regional interests,  We have almost 30,000 troops stationed in South Korea having added 850 troops, to re-balance" in January 2014.   The US has had large numbers of troops in South Korea since the signing of an armistice in 1953.  A final end to the war has not been signed, so technically we are still at war with North Korea.

    While they are not capable, in all likelihood, to attack the US, a military affront to a neighboring country is not out of the realm of possibility--which does bring the capability of involving the US.  North Korea is an isolated, nuclear-armed country dependent on Kim Jong un, as a member of the ruling dynasty, to hold it all together. Culturally, North Korea is not able to deal with mockery, and, of course, not assassination.

    History is replete with matters seen as small by one side, as being war-worthy on the other.  And, there is the cumulative effect. And, of course, no one can be sure that North Korea is as rational as we think it should be--especially if they somehow lose their Chinese sugar-daddies.  

    President Obama is cautious and I believe he is in the process of de-esclating the situation.  This is a time for a "proportional" response to consist of a stern speech and a follow-up of not a whole lot more.  Moreover, my guess is that this hoopla will soon go the way of the "ballon boy"  hype.  Sony made a business decision to make the movie, to stop distribution and to start it once again.  What is good for Sony is not necessarily good for the US.


    Well (5.00 / 1) (#59)
    by CaptHowdy on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 05:19:32 PM EST
    I guess we disagree.   They are not capable of waging more than a 20 minute war.  That said, if you watch that BBC doc the entire country seems to be ready ad waiting for that.

    As pol said, it will never happen.  There is as you pointed out far to much to lose.  Beyond the fact that SK and the US would find a way to stop it China would never allow it.   IMO if China thought for one second Kim was in actual danger of pushing the button he would be dead in an hour.  Kim was educated in the west.  He knows that too.  If nothing else.

    So personally I think a little mockery is exactly what is called for.  Even there, again the doc, he is losing his grip on information control.  When enough people see what he is and what he has made them they will take care of it.   In far worse ways than we ever would.   He knows that too.


    I am at a loss to understand (5.00 / 1) (#65)
    by Politalkix on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 06:45:12 PM EST
    the deep skepticism that the attacks can possibly be sourced to NK. It is not that there has never been earlier suspicions regarding cyber attacks from that country.


    or that it does not fit with that dictatorship's mode of behavior link

    While we are analyzing what SONY could have gained, it may also be useful to analyze what NK could have gained by listening to a NK expert on this matter link

    CHA: "Yeah. It's a good question. I mean, it's part of North Korean behavior. I mean, they do these sorts of things and then try to deny them, but at the same time applaud them. We've seen them do this with other attacks against South Korea, sinking of a naval vessel, for example. And this idea of a joint investigation is just absurd, but it's very typical of North Korean behavior.

    Sure. I think so in two senses. One is that they like the attention. They feel like they've been pushed to the margins. And they, of course, like it when all the media in the west are talking about this.

    But also in the sense that, you know, they are trying to build a portfolio of asymmetric capabilities, whether its ballistic missiles, weapons of mass destruction. And cyber has clearly been one of these elements. They've been working on this for quite some time. And they're exhibiting this capability now.


    I would not argue with most of that (none / 0) (#36)
    by CaptHowdy on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 03:17:41 PM EST
    but surely you are not suggesting that there are not, in fact, bad guys.

    And that North Koreas ruler is among them?


    Basically I'm arguing against (5.00 / 1) (#43)
    by MO Blue on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 04:03:29 PM EST
    the type of labeling that brings any discussion down to the level of a spaghetti western. IOW the "good guys" standing in the street blasting away at the "bad guys."

    Of course, the "good guy" label is assigned to all types of people not just the North Koreas ruler. It is often used to give the one labeled the "good guy" the undisputed right to do anything they please no matter how illegal or base to another person because after all he/she/they are the bad guy and deserve whatever they get.

    It eliminates the need to examine what or why something has happened. Even illogical explanations are excepted once the label is assigned.

    Clumsy explanation but review it in light of the study on cognitive biases and "motivated reasoning." Also, think of all things this level of thinking has brought about. Iraq invasion - torture - spying on American citizens - eliminating Constitutional rights - using illegal tactics on civilians and militarizing civilian police departments.


    You are fighting the the tide MO (5.00 / 3) (#66)
    by FlJoe on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 07:01:15 PM EST
    The American discourse in foreign policy has long been boiler plate movie script at best, downright cartoonish at worst. The MIC pumps up any and all threats then demagoguing politicians and compliant media sell it to to clueless masses. After the summers blockbuster "ISIS is coming for our Heads" and the lackluster "EBOLA" we get the lighter holiday fare "Korean Kook is coming for your movies". I am sure ISIS 2  will be coming to the hall of congress/tv studios by early summer. There was talk of a sequel to the critically acclaimed "Putin gets pushy" but the producers are having serious financial problems.
    Joking aside the miltary/media/industrial/intelligence/neo-con axis wants us to to fear something at all times. Make us fear beheadings or make  us fear pranks. Keep us  afraid long enough and one day America wakes up to find itself by led criminal, torturing warmongers. One day America wakes up to Wall Street Bankers stealing and gambling with it's  wealth. One day America wakes up to it's citizen's being executed in the street.
    But America snoozes on with it's sweet dreams of a shining city on the hill.

    Again much I agree with (none / 0) (#44)
    by CaptHowdy on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 04:11:21 PM EST
    from the first day of this I have been the one saying follow the evidence.  And applauding the president for what is undeniably a measured and reasonable response.  
    He said, and I agree, that if NK did this they did it to provoke us.  And he refused to be provoked.  Saying we would respond in a thoughtful and measured way.
    I'm not sure where all this talk of war mongering is coming from.   Who is war mongering?

    I linked (none / 0) (#45)
    by CaptHowdy on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 04:17:05 PM EST
    to this recent BBC doc on NK once before.
    If you did not watch it then I encourage you to watch it now.
    The most obvious fact that comes from this is that Kim wants a war.  They consider themselves to be at war.  Watch the cod.  It's excellent and terrifying.  Obama, whatever else, will never give him that war.

    While North Korea's 'Supreme Commander' Kim Jong-Un has been threatening thermo-nuclear war against the United States, Panorama reporter John Sweeney spent eight days undercover inside the most rigidly-controlled nation on Earth.

    Travelling from the capital Pyongyang to the countryside beyond and to the de-Militarised Zone on the border with South Korea, Sweeney witnesses a landscape bleak beyond words, a people brainwashed for three generations and a regime happy to give the impression of marching towards Armageddon.

    Correction (none / 0) (#67)
    by MO Blue on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 07:21:52 PM EST
    Of course, the "bad guy" label is assigned to all types of people not just the North Koreas ruler.

    Skate on the edge of another war? (none / 0) (#92)
    by Militarytracy on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 10:03:31 PM EST
    you must be joking

    Am I joking? (5.00 / 2) (#93)
    by MO Blue on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 10:43:27 PM EST
    Am I claiming that I think we are skating on the edge of another war. No and that is not what I actually said.

    What I said was the defiant, tough guy approach has a great deal of appeal -

    appeal to a large segment of the population as being able "spit in the eye" of one of the "bad guys" like Kim Jong Un and to skate on the edge of another war.

    Do you deny that a certain percentage of our population (the bomb, bomb Iran crowd) does not find the idea of defying our enemies appealing and salivate at the thought of bombing our enemies, even N. Korea, into submission or annihlation? I was referring to the fact that certain people are titilated by the idea, not that we were actually at the edge of another war.


    Those people are always there MO (none / 0) (#111)
    by Militarytracy on Sat Dec 27, 2014 at 10:00:22 AM EST
    They are never going away.  I don't have to live in fear and shutdown their debate possibilities because then we lose those muscles too, and once again they aren't going away.  We will always have to push against them.

    It is best to allow them to rattle on and on over tiny social infractions and chart their inabilities to be levelheaded while demanding outrageous incongruent consequences.  Those videos are all now available when we ever have to make some serious decisions and they are demanding to be a part of that problem solving.


    I really think people are assigning too (5.00 / 3) (#116)
    by MO Blue on Sat Dec 27, 2014 at 11:46:02 AM EST
    many different layers of meaning to what was basically just a simple (satirical) comment responding to what KeysDan was describing happening politically and in the theaters.

    But, we won.  The US government will teach them a lesson not to mess with our right to see a movie by Sony.  The response will be, apparently, more nuanced than the banana wars when we sent in the Marines to protect the business interests of United Fruit. And, that's all to the good.

    It is now back to business as usual but with a political stand.  Some movie goers are donning red, white and blue costuming. Some theaters are selling souvenir soft drink cups shaped like rockets--for a $6 premium over the standard drink price.  Tickets are following the direction of a fired rocket: up to $24.  And, digital pirating is in full swing.

    I viewed Dan's original comment as more a satirical  (mocking) assessment of the issue and I attempted to respond in the same way. IOW, I was mocking the arm chair warriors and some of the political reactions. As with all satire there is always more than a grain of truth in what is being said. There are people that think this way and I was mocking them.

    Dan may (?) have been the only person on the entire thread that "got it."  My attempts to explain what I actually said keep getting responses that are even further away from what I intended or wrote. People are projecting meanings into what I wrote based on their own take of the issue which have little to do with what I wrote.

    I am done commenting on this since it has definitely developed a life of its own and not in a good way.


    MO Blue (none / 0) (#117)
    by Politalkix on Sat Dec 27, 2014 at 12:11:01 PM EST
    We got what you said. It seems however you did not get the point some of us are making.

    In this blog we always mock those who reflexively beat the drums of war. Ask Jim about it. However, because war drums are beaten reflexively by a segment of population in our country, it does not mean that (1) Kim Jong Un does not beat it or that NK also does not have arm chair warriors who keep talk of war on a perpetual boil or (2)everyone who wants to make a statement in our country against forced censorship are unthinking people that are manipulated by others.

    If we can mock Jim for being overly enthusiastic about war why can't we mock or make political points against a dictator who craves for attention by threatening countries and people all the time? This is a question where I have not received any satisfactory answer from you or Dan.


    You can mock anyone that you want (5.00 / 4) (#118)
    by MO Blue on Sat Dec 27, 2014 at 12:49:19 PM EST
    The fact that I did not chose to comment on what you wrote was not a result of not understanding your point. I rarely respond to one of your comments. I surely never criticized you or anyone else for mocking Kim Jung un or for your views on the Sony hack. The only comment I made to you was in response to your incorrect assessment that my comment had anything to do with the military-industrial complex.  Your straw man accusations are as predictible as they are boring. So, what you choose to do or not do, holds very little interest to me.

    I can't speak for Dan, but I don't really care if you find my comments satisfactory or not.


    Fine (none / 0) (#120)
    by Politalkix on Sat Dec 27, 2014 at 12:52:47 PM EST
    I thnk you are picking a fight (none / 0) (#127)
    by CaptHowdy on Sat Dec 27, 2014 at 05:24:26 PM EST
    with someone who agrees with you.

    Movie Gold (none / 0) (#115)
    by Politalkix on Sat Dec 27, 2014 at 11:12:18 AM EST
    It seems that the thin skinned dictator does not have much respect for monkeys. However, monkeys are revered in that part of the world because of their connection to Buddhist folklore.

    Since Kim Jong Un will ensure that movies about North Korea will do well in the box office, other studios have an opportunity to make lots of money. Can Disney make a movie called Sun Wukong and the bully with the strange haircut? The story line can revolve around the theme of Sun Wukong creating havoc in the kingdom of Kim Jong Un by shutting down the internet.


    I watched it today (none / 0) (#32)
    by CaptHowdy on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 02:56:21 PM EST

    IMO it's an intellectual tour de force compared to The Hangover which made about 300 million bucks domestically.


    "fine" holiday entertainment = Sony (none / 0) (#27)
    by ZtoA on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 01:51:44 PM EST
    But I feel sorry for the employees who have had sensitive personal info splashed onto the interwebs.

    One of the least expected companies to take collateral damage in the epic Sony Pictures hack has been Snapchat. CEO Evan Spiegel regularly trades emails with Sony Pictures CEO Michael Lynton, who sits on Snapchat's board, and the revelations from the pair's emails have been spilling out all week.

    more at link


    This is what I've been looking for (none / 0) (#28)
    by ZtoA on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 01:54:40 PM EST

    A group of former and current Sony Pictures employees are suing the company for failing to protect their data, according to a complaint filed today in California District Court. (A second suit has also been filed according to The Hollywood Reporter, alleging that the choice to name North Korea put employees in danger.) The group is led by a former employee named Michael Corona, who worked for Sony between 2004 and 2007, and is currently spending $700 a year for identity theft protection. Sony has reportedly offered to provide identity theft monitoring services to current employees, but many previous employees like Corona have been affected by the leak and left to fend for themselves.



    (Sigh!) Lily Tomlin probably said it best: (5.00 / 3) (#30)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 02:39:49 PM EST
    "No matter how cynical you become, it's impossible to keep up."



    I was talking to someone today (none / 0) (#37)
    by CaptHowdy on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 03:26:59 PM EST
    about Gods an Kings.  We agreed it was, as a film, pretty lame.   But we agreed an something else.  That we liked the idea of the "plagues" being scientifically plausible.  After all even if they were miracles there is no reason they could not be achieved using naturally available tools.
    OTOH it might be the biggest thing others disliked about it.

    Ugh! Don't remind me of that cinematic tripe! (none / 0) (#50)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 04:35:13 PM EST
    "Exodus: Gods and Kings" was without a doubt the absolute worst movie I've seen in a theatre in a number of years -- and for a Ridley Scott fan like me, that's saying something. I'm usually very discriminating in choosing what to see in a theatre. But then, I figured that hey, this was directed by Ridley Scott, so what could go wrong?

    And as I learned to my chagrin, lots of things, actually.


    But the miracles (5.00 / 1) (#51)
    by CaptHowdy on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 04:39:41 PM EST
    the reason for my comment.
    Try, for a moment, if you can, to set aside your opinion of the film.  What did you think, as a person of faith, about the naturalistic miracles.  I'm really curious.  IMO it was the one interesting thing, aside from the excellent effects, about it.

    Just curious.


    Sorry (none / 0) (#53)
    by CaptHowdy on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 04:43:43 PM EST
    that might be considered a kind of spoiler.  But honestly we kind of know the story.   The director provides scientifically logical, if, um, unlikely, explanations.

    ... for being. If we can't explain it scientifically as of this moment, it's likely because we're not quite there yet on a techno-academic level. But I do believe that everything, even the seemingly implausible, has a scientifically rational explanation for its occurrence.

    Sometimes, that explanation must simply await our discovery. To that end, I also believe that science and faith are not mutually incompatible, and that the divine intent of the Diety is to allow humankind, as part of the greater natural universe, to evolve at its own pace and of its own accord.



    I got a hardcover (5.00 / 1) (#56)
    by CaptHowdy on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 05:11:05 PM EST
    of Gilgamesh for Christmas.   I had never read it.  As usual my first thought was why hasn't this been a big budget film.  But I'm loving it.

    I'd guess that ... (5.00 / 1) (#58)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 05:18:59 PM EST
    ... any attempt to translate that epic work into film might prove to be a rather daunting task for even the bravest of directors -- just like the Book of Exodus.

    GILGAMESH (5.00 / 1) (#60)
    by CaptHowdy on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 05:22:06 PM EST
    the HBO miniseries!!!

    Gilgamesh isn't that long.. (5.00 / 1) (#128)
    by jondee on Sat Dec 27, 2014 at 10:06:42 PM EST
    the Mahabarata, now that's long..

    Gilgamesh would be interesting transposed to a different time and place; the way Orson Welles did a voodoo MacBeth.


    You remind me of this (none / 0) (#62)
    by Mordiggian 88 on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 05:37:07 PM EST

    But first, please know that I am a scientist. As such, I am trained to observe; to think calmly, clearly, and analytically; to test every hypothesis. I do not believe at all in the so-called supernatural. This universe did not come into being, it does not continue to be, except by the operation of natural and immutable laws. And I mean immutable, gentlemen. Everything that has ever happened, that is happening now, or that ever is to happen, was, is, and will be statistically connected with its predecessor event and with its successor event. If I did not believe that implicitly, I would lose all faith in the scientific method. For if one single 'supernatural' event or thing had ever occurred or existed it would have constituted an entirely unpredictable event and would have initiated a series or a succession of such events; a state of things which no scientist will or can believe possible in an orderly universe."

    Excerpt From: E. E. "Doc" Smith. "First Lensman." epubBooks Classics, 2014-04-01. iBooks.
    This material may be protected by copyright.

    ZtoA (none / 0) (#68)
    by CaptHowdy on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 07:26:47 PM EST
    i just read this.  No one is just "believing" that NK did this.    And as cautious a person as Obama is known to be I'm a little surprised you would suggest that.
    I'm kind over links no one reads but if you would actually like some information I would suggest googling the FBI reports on this sibject.  That is providing you don't think they are "in on it".
    They contain quite a bit of what most people would call "evidence" that NK was behind it.  Like similarities to the tools and methods that they are known to have used in the past.
    NK does in fact have a large history of doing this.  And they have enormous resources dedicated to it.  No one who has the most basic understandmg of the dangers of cyber warfare doubts this.
    That does not "prove" they did this.  But it's not about belief.
    Just fyi

    Capt, I am not really down on Obama (none / 0) (#104)
    by ZtoA on Sat Dec 27, 2014 at 07:40:26 AM EST
    but he DID say that he "believed" this was from NK. However he has been measured. So I have no problem with his "measured" part. However, from what I read it is not so very obvious that this was simply one hack from one nation state. MO, Floe, Donald, etc have said it much better than I could and I translate all of their comments like this: "when war talk becomes comfortable or even coo/casuall, then actual war becomes easier".  "believing" NK absolutely did this is = essentially war talk.

    But looking closer the Sony hack(s) were so much more than one stupid movie. It has exposed some anti-piracy programs that Sony was developing that could have actually have directly impacted the entire internets and the freedoms we have.

    The people in NK do not know any of this, nevertheless NK has focused on developing a tiny elite force of hackers who are f-ing brilliant. They are so brilliant (and educated all over the globe as part of their honed educations) that they would know not to use bits of code that they used f-ing two whole years ago. Think of this as art. Why would they do that? They would not. Other's might tho as a sort of hacker joke.

    This is so not just about Obama. He did not help ("believe" NK was behind this- one and only hack stuff) and he did not hurt ("measured" response). This/these hack(s) bypass leaders all-together and  get to the odd meat of the populations and their media reactions. But looking at Sony's  cyber practices and their business practices, all of which were/are exposed, it is interesting to see that these kinds of extremely powerful cultural and financial corporations are mining mindless populations for their reactions and maybe trying to profit from them. Sony simply got caught with their hands in the cookie jar(s).

    On sept 29, when I was very sick from a full body infection from a yet undiscovered tooth/root infection, and hit some button 'wrongly' on my laptop, not my desk top, and then watched as each software program was displayed and then dissolved on my  laptop (I do my banking on my desk-not lap top for my business- (of 1 employee, me, and multiple distributers and vendors). Even I know that cyber security is important and I have "a guy". And "my guy" (cyber expert and host of my email and website) spent an hour muttering in my earbuds to my ears via phone while I watched him remotely go after the two malware programs on my laptop. Frankly, it was fascinating. "The Net" comes to mind. But it also impacted my banking and my health, at the time, did not benefit - even tho it was interesting. My sorry little laptop (not even the main computer I use for my sorry little business) is still rather impacted and so much data was exposed and probably compromised.

    But I wonder, if I can pay attention (rather too late) to cyber security, then why the FFFF can a major corporation like Sony, who should have at least one cyber expert, on staff, ignore it?? The deep reveal of the hack(s) are just so not just about one stupid movie. But all that is being for some strange reason(s) being ignored by the news and the govt (Obama and the FBI). Why? This should be clear for them too. I am regularly called out as stupid (and not just because of dyslexia) about business stuff, but they might also get used to being called out when they, too, do 'stupid' stuff on the internets. These/this hack(s) are more cultural than political, but culture affects the politics of some region or regional thinking. So thinking "woo-hoo I am going to support the USA {free speech, free thinking, smart connected thinking} by seeing a stupid movie and giving lots of profits for some stupid arrogant for-profit corporation) is not, maybe, the best response. And the info about the hack(s) are all over the internet(s). Neither Obama, the FBI or any particular person has the excuse that this was "all so obvious" - no, nothing is clear in a hack(s) like this!!

    And I just have to say that insomnia is a B!tch.


    I agree with you that ... (5.00 / 1) (#125)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Sat Dec 27, 2014 at 03:57:48 PM EST
    ... casual exchanges about the prospect of war makes it that much easier for war to occur, and in that regard such lazy-brained discussion is rather foolish. But that said, my own expressed concerns in that matter have been primarily with collective mentality of the executive suite at Sony Pictures, which led them to greenlight such a low-brow and offensive premise for production in the first place.

    There's a time-honored maxim in the U.S. Army among its armored corps officers and commanders that you always endeavor to stay at least 10 to 20 yards in front of your own dust cloud. That did not happen at Sony Pictures for any number of painfully obvious reasons. The egregiously flawed series of judgment calls by its senior executives served only to provoke and facilitate a wholly avoidable and unnecessary international incident.

    I have absolutely no sympathy whatsoever for the clowns at Sony Pictures, and as far as I'm concerned, their recent appeals to patriotism are truly the last refuge of scoundrels. Judging from the reviews and word of mouth, "The Interview" is clearly nothing more than hack cinema. So in a perverse sense, I think it's only fair that Sony Pictures had the favor returned in kind.

    And yes, I agree with the Cap'n that North Korea is perfectly capable of that sort of retaliatory act, and also that President Obama's response to the cyberassault on Sony Pictures' internal electronic communications infrastructure -- regardless of whoever's behind it -- has been both measured and appropriate.

    This incident should definitely serve as our wake-up call to address our own perceived and exposed vulnerabilities in cybersecurity. But beyond that, I don't think that either of the primary players in this sorry-a$$ed tit-for-tat kerfuffle are really worth any further escalation of matters beyond the current din. And from the standpoint of U.S. foreign policy, it's probably best that we simply roll our eyes and move on to far more important issues.



    That 15.4", 2.5 GHz MBP (none / 0) (#13)
    by fishcamp on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 06:51:20 AM EST
    is back on the Apple refurbished page for $400 discount from the same new one at the Apple store.  It was released this year so, once again, I think it's new, and not refurbished.  It's the absolute perfect one, except it does cost $2099.  Like the song says, "You don't always get what you want".

    Are you ready? I was born ready. (none / 0) (#17)
    by CaptHowdy on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 09:43:50 AM EST
    The problem I have with UFO claims (none / 0) (#25)
    by McBain on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 01:21:53 PM EST
    is the distance they would have to travel to visit us. I'm sure there is intelligent life throughout  the universe, but I'm skeptical aliens have ever visited earth.  

    May the better angels (none / 0) (#33)
    by CaptHowdy on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 03:01:12 PM EST
    of Christmas guide me from speaking rashly.....

    I don't know, Cap'n. (5.00 / 1) (#57)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 05:11:36 PM EST
    There has to be a scientifically rational explanation as to why alien beings choose time and again to reveal their presence only to residents of trailer parks in southern plains states, and to further do so only on an individual and random basis.

    In the 70s Steve Martin (5.00 / 1) (#64)
    by CaptHowdy on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 06:31:32 PM EST
    predicted that our first message would be 4 words in response to the Voyager probe.



    And in the early '90s, there was ... (none / 0) (#97)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Sat Dec 27, 2014 at 01:12:30 AM EST
    ... more "Kids in the Hall": Probing Aliens.

    My favortie famous UFO sighting was (5.00 / 1) (#77)
    by McBain on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 08:47:22 PM EST
    The Phoenix Lights


    There was an interesting documentary about it, and lots of witnesses.  Ultimately, I think it turned about to be two, unrelated, man made/natural occurrences.

    The most credible sightings come from pilots, astronauts, and military people.  

    I once heard Dr. Michio Kaku say that 99% of all sightings of UFO's can be dismissed as being caused by familiar phenomena, such as the planet Venus, swamp gas, meteors, satellites, weather balloons, even radar echoes that bounce off mountains.

    But that still leaves 1%!


    Maybe to many SciFi movies (none / 0) (#61)
    by CaptHowdy on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 05:28:36 PM EST
    but my first thought was that considering this is an official act, how likely is it that contact has already happened.



    As one of my friends pointed out (none / 0) (#96)
    by Repack Rider on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 11:31:21 PM EST
    Everyone has video capability these days.  The meteor over Russia was recorded on hundreds of video cameras, even though no one was looking for it and it was over in a few seconds.

    Where are the UFO iphone or surveillance camera videos?


    I enjoyed the article (none / 0) (#90)
    by MO Blue on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 09:16:43 PM EST
    Thought the comments by the representative from the Vatican very interesting.

    See no reason not to believe that there is a possibility that some form of life exists out in the universe.

    Also, I think it is just another sign of our misguided sense of exceptionalism, that many believe since we haven't yet developed the technology to travel between galaxies, it cannot be done.

    Not convinced either way but sure wouldn't rule it out.


    Agreed (none / 0) (#109)
    by CaptHowdy on Sat Dec 27, 2014 at 09:45:38 AM EST
    i am not an ancient aliens groupie.  But there are lots of very smart people talking about this.  Reading that article you met some of them.  Forgetting the fact that there has been some very interesting video taken recently, that's not the point of that piece.  Those people are talking about contact.  Which logic suggests will not happen face to face but electronically.

    I agree that the Vatican comments are very interesting.   They seem very involved in this.


    Kitchen experts sought (none / 0) (#19)
    by Reconstructionist on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 12:29:43 PM EST
      I see a number of people here know their way around a kitchen, so maybe someone can help.

     I have pretty good sized piece of  leftover prime rib (about 2 1/2- 3 lbs). Googling, I get lots of conflicting advice on the best way to reheat without overcooking. Some say slice into serving portions; others say  keep whole; Some recommend low temp oven, some high heat. Others say heat in a pan on the stove or even in the microwave.

      It came out perfectly yesterday-- rare and juicy. I'd like it as rare as can be achieved after reheating (I have no leftover au jus for it).

      Any tips?


    I tried this last year and was pleased... (none / 0) (#21)
    by Cashmere on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 12:57:05 PM EST
    ... with the results.

    The second piece of Roast Prime Rib was a much thicker End Cut at 1.5 inches thick. For this test, I placed the meat into a fry pan and into a preheated 250* for one hour. The door was never opened and no checks on temperature were ever made to see how it was progressing. At the end of the hour warm up phase, similar to how I recommend how beef roasts should be handled after the holding, or resting phase....the Prime Rib was removed from the oven where there was about a teaspoon's worth of juice that pooled in the pan....the color of the meat had also turned from the heat, not grey, but just a deeper brownish red. The Prime Rib was then placed to sear in a preheated Fry Pan for exactly 75 seconds on each side where it was removed directly to the plate. There was no resting and slices were made so you could see the results.....the meat was still pink with just a little outer ring from the sear. ...You can even see the steam emitting from the meat...so the beef was hot and not just merely warm. Please note that while the meat cooled as it was being eaten on the plate, the color of the interior of the meat retained a beautiful pink or red color.

    It is from a website (chowhound.chow.com) but I don't have time to tiny url it, so I just posted the method.  Best of luck!


    We did prime rib again (none / 0) (#135)
    by Militarytracy on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 12:01:51 PM EST
    I guess because we went a year without a family member to party with, the parties this year were exactly what the majority wanted so we had rib roast for Thanksgiving and Christmas.

    We have had the best luck slicing into individual portions and reheating gently at around 300.  Everyone here likes it med rare, and that is how we have been able to preserve some red and pink in each portion while reheating.


    The last of our way-too-large (5.00 / 2) (#146)
    by oculus on Wed Dec 31, 2014 at 01:35:50 AM EST
    and very expensive four-rib prime standing rib roast was finished today. My daughters' prepared the entire dinner while I played the piano!  What a great gift. Yorkshire pudding was vastly superior to my efforts. Daughter's creative methodology for left-over roast:  slice, swab w/olive oil, add spices, broil for 10 minutes. Delish

    We still have a bit leftover (none / 0) (#147)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Dec 31, 2014 at 08:38:22 AM EST
    It didn't go as fast as Thanksgiving's did.  The smoked salmon did though.  We smoked three large fillets and they were gobbled.

    Josh is finishing the ribs off somewhat similar.  Warmed slices with a little spice that he eats fajita style in a tortilla.

    How sweet and wonderful to be gifted superbly prepared meals :)  My first Yorkshire puddings left much to be desired.  First off all,  that chef who did the video where you fill one row of muffin cups with oil and tilt the pan for cool factor dispersal...way too much oil.  The puddings from that recipe were very greasy and the inside of the oven destroyed :). More recipes in trial :)


    Best to pour the drippings from (none / 0) (#148)
    by oculus on Wed Dec 31, 2014 at 10:04:51 AM EST
    the roast into the muffin pan. Then add the freshly beaten other ingredients.

    Next time I will go with that (none / 0) (#149)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Dec 31, 2014 at 11:39:17 AM EST
    Oops... (none / 0) (#24)
    by lentinel on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 01:19:56 PM EST

    What if wasn't North Korea after all?

    In the controversy over the Sony hacking, government officials have accused the sequestered communist country of hacking Sony, but security analysts argue Russian hackers may be the culprit.

    Writing samples from hackers claiming responsibility for leaking finance reports and emails by Sony employees suggest the native language was Russian, according to Taia Global, a cyber security consulting group.

    "Our preliminary results show that Sony's attackers were most likely Russian, possibly but not likely Korean and definitely not Mandarin Chinese or German," the Seattle-based company wrote in a Christmas Eve blog post.

    Wow. No one thought of that (none / 0) (#31)
    by CaptHowdy on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 02:48:43 PM EST
    by CaptHowdy on Wed Dec 17, 2014 at 05:54:00 PM EST
    thats close to what I expected.  Korea would have someone else do it.  I expected Russia or Chechnya or someplace like that.
    they said there had to be an insider at some point.  Very curious who that might be.  I hope they are safely in Chechnya or wherever by now.  For their sake.


    And North Korea is blaming (none / 0) (#91)
    by Politalkix on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 09:55:56 PM EST
    the USA for internet outages now :-). link

    "The United States, with its large physical size and oblivious to the shame of playing hide and seek as children with runny noses would, has begun disrupting the Internet operations of the main media outlets of our republic," the North's National Defense Commission said in a statement.

    I wonder who they pay to write such lines :-).


    Conflict resolution- NK style (none / 0) (#94)
    by Politalkix on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 11:01:05 PM EST

    North Korea called President Barack Obama "a monkey" and blamed the U.S. on Saturday for shutting down its Internet amid the hacking row over the comedy "The Interview."

    "Obama always goes reckless in words and deeds like a monkey in a tropical forest," an unidentified spokesman at the commission's Policy Department said in a statement carried by the official Korean Central News Agency.


    After Monkey Slur, N.K. again loses internet, (none / 0) (#121)
    by Mr Natural on Sat Dec 27, 2014 at 01:18:32 PM EST
    China's Xinhua news agency reported Saturday that North Korea's Internet and 3G mobile phone networks had been paralyzed once again.

    So much for Little Kim's dreaded CyberBully überwarrior vanguard.


    How "The interview" subverts the regime (none / 0) (#122)
    by Politalkix on Sat Dec 27, 2014 at 01:39:09 PM EST
    Poli, those are two very good articles (none / 0) (#131)
    by fishcamp on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 07:23:15 AM EST
    you linked to.  Wasn't it the FBI that informed Obama it was the NK's that threatened Sony and the theaters if they showed "The Interview"?  While I can't stand all the alphabetical henchmen that seem to control many things in our lives, I don't think they are stupid.  If they said the NK's did it, as much as I don't like them I do believe the FBI about this.  I would rather believe Sony did it to themselves to promote a bad film, but find that difficult.  Then the NK's said the US are responsible for their massive internet and telephone disruption.  While I believe we could do this, I doubt we would.  Doesn't China control NK's internet and telephones?  China has never been happy with many of NK's decisions, and could certainly shut down their facilities.  We can speculate, but what do we really know?

    right now we, the general public, (none / 0) (#133)
    by ZtoA on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 11:09:57 AM EST
    don't know. Just can't be certain of anything about this/these hack(s). But even CNN is now questioning the 'belief' that this was entirely NK or even NK at all.

    The FBI has said that code in the malware used by a group called "Guardians of Peace" (GoP) in the attack on Sony is similar to code used by North Korea in other attacks.
    But that code was leaked a long time ago, experts say. Any hacker anywhere in the world could have used it.

    This corresponds to what cyber experts have written for tech outlets like Wired. CNN link.

    Capt I am not 'worried' about cyber infrastructure, but I am concerned. Also, I as a tiny company, try to pay attention to it. Sony, however, was very reckless with their cyber security. IMO that was stupid.

    Actually I am coming to think one of the motives behind this/these hack(s) are issues of piracy and how Sony prosecuted cases of piracy and some anti-piracy programs that Sony has been developing that could hugely impact the internet. In that case it would be a nice distraction to have this publicly blamed on a big obvious target like NK.

    NK puts many eggs into its hacker basket and are extremely good at it. Along with the US, UK, Germany, China, Israel, Anonymous, LULZ and several more, NK is probably in the top 10-15 groups on the planet that actually could do this. But these are just the ones who let themselves be known to lay people.


    NYT: Political Quandary for liberal Zionists (none / 0) (#63)
    by Politalkix on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 06:23:35 PM EST
    From that article... (none / 0) (#137)
    by unitron on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 02:09:08 PM EST
    "She is running for president, this isn't true-self time,"

    No more than for any other candidate, I fear.

    What, me cynical?


    Putin and the Far Right (none / 0) (#95)
    by Politalkix on Fri Dec 26, 2014 at 11:29:26 PM EST

    Fascism has arrived once again.

    OK I'm just going to say it - here on TL (none / 0) (#129)
    by ZtoA on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 12:56:55 AM EST
    in front of lawyers and judges and all sorts of very very smart people. And I do not blame you for judging me - hell, I judge me and if I was not me then I would never listen to me. But.....

    In astrology this is a time where barriers/borders do not mean what they have meant for the las several thousand years. Change is happening - and it is happening very fast (like a kid's 'growth spurt' which can happen overnight then no growth for the next 6 months or so then another 'growth spurt'). Yes, Capt H we should very much pay attention to our personal cyber security. No, we americans do not know for sure who (or multiple whos) hacked Sony. Or for what reason(s). And one more thing about astrologers - they are all idiots (and I do not say that lightly since I study it) but they are just as traditional as anyone else - including Jim. Online popular current events astrologers are just like a liberal Jim's website.

    Nation states are not the only rulers any more (think AQ and IS - not nation states yet very powerful). Individuals (and not just large groups of individuals) can cause large waves of change (think Eric Garner etc etc). The nation state of the USA wants so deeply to blame the Sony hack on some other nation state. But what if this was done by a couple of people who are NK nationals living in LA or India or wherever. NK hones their hackers and sends them all over the planet to be educated. This (these) hack(s) could have been done by a couple of brilliant teens. Truly.

    We oldsters (over 40 :) ) need to learn to ride these time waves like the 20s seem to be able to in their DNA. If we can it will benefit the globe.