back to article Failed insurrection aside, Biden is going to be president in two weeks. What does it mean for tech policy?

Despite an extraordinary day in Washington DC where, under President Trump’s urging, insurrectionists stormed the Capitol and temporarily halted the approval of his replacement, Joe Biden is still going to become president of the United States on January 20. Perhaps more critically in terms of legislation however, Wednesday …

  1. AVR

    Biden's proposed plenty of big tech lobbyists for positions in his administration, and this article seems to blithely assume they'll go along with the author's perception of needs and justice, or that they'll be overruled by others in the administration who do. That's not impossible but it seems unlikely.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      @AVR Not quite

      Biden aka China Joe is a puppet.

      Not just to China, but Obama and to the left.

      While he has some lucid days he's always being controlled and his camp has always called a LID.

      If you look at Biden's past, he's always been one to guess wrong and to try and cash in.

      Where' s Hunter?

      His laptop has a lot of dirt on the Biden family which the Big 3 in Big Tech helped to quash the story and protect Joe.

      That means they'll cash in and watch the 230 protections stay in place.

      FB & Twitter banned Trump.

      It doesn't matter if Trump's an idiot or not, but the fact that they can ban or filter an official or a recognized news source means that they have too much power.

      Biden could be considered their puppet too.

      The odds of Joe lasting more than 6 months aren't that great.

      His mental health is one thing.

      Hunter is another.

      There's a rumor that his sole role was to get Kamala seated and let Obama pull the strings.

      Just watch and see this happen.

      1. W@ldo

        Re: @AVR Not quite

        For the life of me I cannot figure out why free services such as Twitter/Facebook are relevant. All folks have to do is stop using it if you disagree, maybe make a phone call instead of posting your life to the world to see. Twitter especially is awful with group-think galor. Especially in the tech industry.

        Take a social media break, think for yourself, read a book, follow Biden's tip and play some records--ok, that last one was probably bad as we have better quality electronic media now.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: @AVR Not quite

          They're relevent because some U.S. judge decided that the president couldn't block users from his twitter feed. In my mind this means that in the next 2 weeks, the DoJ will take this information to that same judge, and he will find everyone from the person who pressed the button up through the chain of command to the board of directors liable for violating that judgement. hopefully they'll all be sentenced to death.

      2. Jason Hindle Silver badge

        Re: @AVR Not quite

        “ Biden aka China Joe is a puppet.”

        As the shit flinging gibbon was Putin’s puppet?

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Rent a mob

    Trump'll nuke California and maybe even Georgia, declare himself leader of the remainder of the country. How will that affect net-neutrality? Will it slow broadband speeds? You tell me.

    That armed group that attacked the Senate are a rent a mob. They are people without jobs, no boss to answer to, and yet can afford to fly into Washington, and stay in Washington hotels (but not Trump's he would never allow his hired hands to stay in his own hotels!), they are bussed to a protest at the correct time, food and water made available.

    Their weapons are arranged to be collected on arrival, so as not to break state laws prohibiting carrying weapons across state lines, and so as not to be carrying weapons around town. Their bags and personal possessions are secured for them while they go smash windows and attack the barricades.

    This is a RENT-a-mob. Organized, paid for, coordinated, criminal intimidation mob.

    Those travel expenses are recompensed, that organizer is salaried, his office rent is reimbursed, the office expenses covered, the staff stipend.

    Trump has 13 days left, we're at the stage where he's renting mobs to attack the Senate to try to intimidate *Republican* Senators into blocking certification, with one person dead from his attack. He will only get more desperate as the days count down.

    He's put a QAnon nutter in the Defense Department, he's reorganized the department so the special forces answer directly to said QAnon nutter, bypassing the chain of command and the Generals. All living, Republican and Democrat, ex Defense Department heads are warning the military not to break the laws and help him hold power. Said QAnon nutter is blocking the transition of the Pentagon to Biden's team.

    I ask again, what was planned on 15th January? Some Republicans clearly know, since some are coordinating with him. The delay in certification that Trump Senate group sought, was to push it past January 15th. What did/does he have planned for January 15th? I get they think its a game for the TV, its a game until it succeeds and then its a coup.

    I said Biden should ensure his own security detail. It sounded like hyperbole right? I say it again. Biden needs to secure his own security, as does everyone in Government, Democrat AND Republicans who Trump is pissed at.

    THIS INCLUDES THE SUPREME COURT. You think he'd send a mob to attack the Senate and wouldn't send a mob to attack the Supreme Court? Even as the court represents his last chance to hold power? They need to ensure their security too.

    Do not underestimate these Putin puppets. They really will do *anything* to keep power.... even slow broadband speeds.

    1. Khaptain Silver badge

      Re: Rent a mob

      I seriously hope that you don't think that the change of president will actualy make any difference..

      People would like to believe that Biden will be different but at the end of the day the POTUS is just a puppet for big business lobbyists.. Biden won't do any better than Trump, his track record speaks for itself.

      1. Danny 5

        Re: Rent a mob

        Well we won't see any "rent-a-mob" situations anymore, I'd say that's a pretty big difference.

        Honestly, how bat shit crazy do you have to be to equate these men? These two men could not be any further apart. If anything, Biden will at least bring back some dignity to the presidency, that's a massive win in itself at this point.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Rent a mob

          Well we won't see any "rent-a-mob" situations anymore, I'd say that's a pretty big difference.

          The dems have playing the rent-a-mob game for decades as well. You think the likes of Antifa and BLM haven't been infiltrated by political operatives? Very naive!

          American politics is one big game and you've been played.

          1. chivo243 Silver badge
            Meh

            Re: Rent a mob

            Every new splinter group who starts to get the media buzz will be infiltrated by both sides... Didn't the original organizer of BLM get shouldered out?

            If politics and what politicians (dem or rep) do grabs your attention, then you're already missing the big picture.

            1. Eclectic Man Silver badge

              Re: Rent a mob

              Yes, but to some extent infiltration of splinter groups can only serve to keep them in funds. There is a tale of a 'Communist' organisation in London which comprised one 'leader' and four infiltrators from MI5, Special Branch, and Counter-Terrorism and no-one else. Not the UK law enforcement agencies' finest hour.

          2. Graham Cobb Silver badge

            Re: Rent a mob

            Except Antifa basically doesn't exist - it is at most a loose coalition of left-wing campaigners, and most often just a label people attach to themselves to summarise their goals.

            And BLM is hardly the Black Panthers! Sure, it is political - it wants political changes. But it isn't generally violent, and certainly not armed with assault weapons!

            1. Jellied Eel Silver badge

              Re: Rent a mob

              And BLM is hardly the Black Panthers! Sure, it is political - it wants political changes. But it isn't generally violent, and certainly not armed with assault weapons!

              Well, there's always NFAC/BLM, (in)famous for this incident-

              https://www.thetruthaboutguns.com/three-wounded-in-louisville-nfac-blm-rally-negligent-discharge/

              And there was absolutely no violence during last year's BLM/Antifa peaceful protests. Police injured themselves by throwing water bottles to each other carelessly. Buildings spontaneously combusted because they were really fascist secret meth labs. And then, more recently, and swinging around to the IT angle-

              https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/live/election-us-2020-55558355

              Armed supporters of President Trump stormed the Capitol building and forced a lockdown

              and

              https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-55568131

              You might think that the top statement from the BBC's live 'news' summary could be supported by their selection from the images of the day. Like, I dunno, images of those armed supporters doing the storming thing, guns drawn. Much the same here-

              Photos show damage inside the ransacked Capitol

              If you want to get a sense of some of the physical damage that rioters caused when they broke into Congress, have a look at this video from a CNN reporter of the inside of a senate official's office.

              Ohnoes! A bit of broken glass and some overturned furniture. I guess the violent, extreme right revolutionaries forgot to bring matchs. Or ask Antifa how to make petrol bombs.

              But such is politics, and the IT thing. Specifically I guess potential for s.230 changes given there have been a lot of demands to ban/crack down/supress or generally censor anything that might be slightly objectionable. Oh, and compose lists of people to hang.. I mean prosecute to the fullest extent of the law based on their social media posts.

              The left doesn't seem big on joined up thinking, although it is obviously big on controlling the narrative. Luckily the incoming administration does have people who know the value of utilising social media for promoting democratic change. Or just organising it. And those people might also know that censorship has a nasty habit of driving groups away from easily monitored social media to other, more secure apps that are much harder to monitor.

              Same with stuff like privacy laws. There have been demands that the FBI collect every bit of mobile data from the towers around the Capitol, so people with phones can be identified and prosecuted.. But I'm fairly certain that (at least for now) prosecution requires more than simple proximity. And it's not like even the semi-serious criminals don't already know to leave their phones behind when they're up to no good.

              1. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Re: Rent a mob

                whois thetruthaboutguns.com

                Registry Registrant ID: REDACTED FOR PRIVACY

                Registrant Name: REDACTED FOR PRIVACY

                Registrant Organization: The Truth About Guns

                Registrant Street: REDACTED FOR PRIVACY

                Registrant City: REDACTED FOR PRIVACY

                Registrant State/Province: Texas

                Registrant Postal Code: REDACTED FOR PRIVACY

                Registrant Country: US

                Registrant Phone: REDACTED FOR PRIVACY

                Registrant Phone Ext:

                Registrant Fax: REDACTED FOR PRIVACY

                Registrant Fax Ext:

                Is that your site?

                They literally didn't want to shoot her, she was warned, she's smashing the window on the closed door breaking into the top floor where they're protecting the Senators. Republicans and Democrats. Climbing through it, thinking Trump is right and he will grant her a pardon. They scream NO!, and she does it anyway and they shoot her.

                I feel sorry for her. At what point did she think overthrowing the elected government was a good thing?

                He needs to go.

                1. Jellied Eel Silver badge

                  Re: Rent a mob

                  Is that your site?

                  Why? Making a list, are we? But no, it was just the first one that came up in a search for 'BLM negligent discharge' because I couldn't remember NFAC. Who were popular some months back for parading with (semi)automatic weapons, like wot the OP didn't think existed.

                  They literally didn't want to shoot her, she was warned, she's smashing the window on the closed door breaking into the top floor where they're protecting the Senators. Republicans and Democrats. Climbing through it, thinking Trump is right and he will grant her a pardon. They scream NO!, and she does it anyway and they shoot her.

                  citation needed

                  Nicely dramatic narrative of the events. Allegedly. Doesn't seem to match the, well, actual videos available on YT. She wasn't smashing the window. She was trying to climb through it when she was shot by someone in the corridor on the far side. Not entirely convinced that's a lawful shooting given 'No' (female voice) isn't exactly a warning to stop, or you will be shot.

                  Anyway, I'm sure there'll be calls to fire/jail whoever fired the shot, and defund the police for good measure. Or maybe an investigation will show the shooting was justified, but who needs those when the media decides the narrative?

                  1. Loyal Commenter Silver badge

                    Re: Rent a mob

                    it was just the first one that came up in a search for 'BLM negligent discharge'

                    So, you're saying the top hit for those particular search terms is a web site nobody has ever heard of, with redacted ownership, based somewhere in Texas.

                    Given that it was the first hit, I'm assuming subsequent hits were less reputable, at least less referenced, which is a reasonable measure of consensus.

                    Decent critical analysis skills would allow you to make a reasonable hypothesis that your original implication of equivalence between BLM (legitimate) protesters and MAGA (illegitimate) rioters is a bit flawed. But then, if you had decent critical analysis skills, I don't think you'd be trying to put forward the opinions that you are.

                    1. Jellied Eel Silver badge

                      Re: Rent a mob

                      So, you're saying the top hit for those particular search terms is a web site nobody has ever heard of, with redacted ownership, based somewhere in Texas.

                      Nope. That was the AC's original research.. Although I'll happily admit I'd never heard of the site before, just the story it reported.. Why the fascination with ownership though? Which is kinda back to IT angle, like changes to privacy laws making it easier/harder for people to make lists..

                      Given that it was the first hit, I'm assuming subsequent hits were less reputable, at least less referenced, which is a reasonable measure of consensus.

                      Well, you know what they say about assuming. Or consensus.

                      Decent critical analysis skills would allow you to make a reasonable hypothesis that your original implication of equivalence between BLM (legitimate) protesters and MAGA (illegitimate) rioters is a bit flawed.

                      Well, let me try to make this easier for you. So original claim said-

                      And BLM is hardly the Black Panthers! Sure, it is political - it wants political changes. But it isn't generally violent, and certainly not armed with assault weapons!

                      So I found a quick example of a 'black power' type movement that clearly is/was armed with assault weapons.. Which you (and others) appear to be denying.

                      But then, if you had decent critical analysis skills, I don't think you'd be trying to put forward the opinions that you are.

                      One of us may have those skills. But on the weapons thing, fill your boots here-

                      https://www.bing.com/images/search?q=NFAC+march&form=HDRSC2&first=1&tsc=ImageBasicHover

                      Plenty of MiB's clutching 'assault' weapons. Which in a non-IT angle, may be something to ban for the incoming administration. Or, for opinions..

                      So how exactly does a 'protestor' differ from a 'rioter'? Ok, CNN once described protests as 'fiery but mostly peaceful'-

                      https://www.rt.com/usa/499164-cnn-kenosha-peaceful-protests/

                      against a backdrop of burning cars & buildings.. Neither of which seemed to be a feature of yesterday's riot/protest. Or when left-wing supporters invade the Capitol to oppose Kavanaugh's appointment, that's ok, but when right-wing protestors do it, it's terrorism?

                      And back to the IT angle, and s.230 in particular, how would control of the narrative make the situation better? After all, now that the Dems have control of the Presidency & Congress for the next 4+ years, it can do pretty much whatever it wants.

                      1. Loyal Commenter Silver badge

                        Re: Rent a mob

                        And BLM is hardly the Black Panthers!

                        ...

                        So I found a quick example of a 'black power' type movement that clearly is/was armed with assault weapons

                        So, you are simultaneously saying that BLM isn't like the Black Panthers, but that it is like a completely different "black power" movement, like the Black Panthers.

                        George Orwell would be proud to have come up with an example of Doublethink like that.

                        You seem to be trying to put forward the idea that a widespread, well accepted, and largely peaceful protest against inequality is equivalent to a tiny violent black power movement (which itself has arisen due to oppression of those people by a white majority), and appear to be doing so in order to defend white supremacist ideology. Next up, you'll be claiming that old white men are dangerously under-represented in Western democracies and that their voices are not being heard.

                        Falsely equating equality movements with supremacy movements, and cherry-picking examples of violence amongst a very large body of protesters, whilst ignoring widespread violence amongst a much smaller body of counter-protesters marks you out as one of ones in the wrong.

                        1. Jellied Eel Silver badge

                          Re: Rent a mob

                          Falsely equating equality movements with supremacy movements, and cherry-picking examples of violence amongst a very large body of protesters, whilst ignoring widespread violence amongst a much smaller body of counter-protesters marks you out as one of ones in the wrong.

                          Err, nope. But now I've apparently gone from being a devils advocaat to a potential white supremacist. Which makes about as much sense as people calling Trump a Nazi. I guess that means he's got 11 days left to eliminate his son-in-law, and nuke Israel. It's strange that a Nazi seems to have managed to normalise relations between Israel and a bunch of previously hostile states. Still sucks to be a Palestinian, but Trump seems to have brokered more peace(ish) deals for Israel than previous Presidents.

                          But that kind of stereotyping seems normal from the extreme-Left. Previously I got banned for pointing out that Charlottesville was a failure in policing. There, the decision was made to funnel protestors & counter-protestors directly into each other, rather than try to keep them seperate.. And then the police mostly vanished, and the inevitable happened. And oddly, an enquiry commissioned by the city said much the same thing. Trump still got blamed rather than the Democrats in charge of that debacle. But I got banned anyway for apparently being a nazi sympathiser or something.

                          Such is politics, and there are striking similarities between those events, and the Capitol 'coup'.

                          But back to this story. Poster said there were no armed black militias. I pointed out that there are. I could also point out that there have been armed left-wing militias, or mobs. See the shootings/deaths during the Seattle 'CHAZ' peaceful protests for more info. So the OP was clearly mistaken in their belief. But it's also kinda consitutional, ie the 2nd Amendment allows for 'well regulated militias', as a kind of counter-coup clause. The authors probably didn't anticipate just how well armed those militias would become.. Or what happens when they're not well organised & clash.

                          You seem to be trying to put forward the idea that a widespread, well accepted, and largely peaceful protest against inequality is equivalent to a tiny violent black power movement (which itself has arisen due to oppression of those people by a white majority),

                          Again that goes back to false equivalence, or narrative management. Those 'peaceful protests' last year caused around $2-3bn in property damage, including destroying local businesses. And that rioting was actively encouraged by Democrats. Now, there's been a largely peaceful (but embarrassing) counter protest, and the Dems are calling for blood. Or, from a psyops pov, quietly cheering. Last year's riots were caused by police brutality & deaths of 'innocent' black people. Now there's a dead, white veteran to martyr and rally behind.

                          But you may also be unconsciously biased. NFAC isn't really a 'tiny, violent, black power movement'. It hasn't been that violent, although it probably is intimidating to a lot of people. It's ideology is.. interesting, eg ..putting forth the view that the United States should either hand the state of Texas over to African-Americans so that they may form an independent country, or allow African-Americans to depart the United States to another country that would provide land upon which to form an independent nation which would be problematic for Texans who may find themselves in a foreign country. But there's nothing stopping Johnson & NFAC departing the US, and founding their own Wakanda.. Other than finding a host, and financing it.

                          But again, such is politics. NFAC is a fairly well regulated militia, per the 2nd Amendment.. Give or take that embarrassing ND, but NFAC realised that and implemented some training. But the Dems are pretty anti-2nd Amendment, sometimes for good reason. So attempting to crack down on 'bad' militias or mobs would also impact the 'good'.. And potentially lead to more violence. And it's much the same with labelling the Capitol protestors as 'terrorists', because if they are, then so are Antifa.. And when Trump threatened to formally declare Antifa a terrorist group, guess which politicians objected?

                          Either way, there'll be 4+ more years to enjoy popcorn. Dems are in charge now, Dems can make their own mistakes.. But no convenient orange man to blame for everything. Biden's already said there'll be "trillions" in new stimulus and helicopter money, but not how that'll be paid for..

        2. Mr Fix.

          Re: Rent a mob

          Well the Biden staff did contribute to a bail found for rioters, I'd say that's pretty much "rent-a-mob".

          https://www.snopes.com/fact-check/biden-staffers-bailout-fund/

        3. W@ldo

          Re: Rent a mob

          During the dem primaries there were younger and more qualified candidates than Biden. Why did Biden win? Not because of his energy or experience (do some research and you'll be horried about his voting record)--Biden was chosen by the dem establishment as they wanted to quelch the movement of Bernie Sanders, and others.

          I despise politicians of all parties. Look at what you are cheerleading--as career politician, grifter, out of touch elderly person, and arguably near senile. Biden's strings are pulled by others. Obama would get out and stump for his positions, Biden can't. Of course the media is carrying his water. Is this really what everyone wants? Another elderly white male???

          1. Version 1.0 Silver badge
            Unhappy

            Re: Rent a mob

            This is America, we don't vote "FOR" a candidate, we vote "AGAINST" a candidate, so Biden has won a massive number of anti-Trump votes. Yes, there were many younger candidates that I liked and would have voted for but to split the anti-Trump voters over a range of good candidates would be put Trump back in power.

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: Rent a mob

              Remember: "whatever you don't want, you don't want negative campaigning"

            2. Jellied Eel Silver badge

              Re: Rent a mob

              ... but to split the anti-Trump voters over a range of good candidates would be put Trump back in power.

              But that wouldn't work, would it? As I understand the US system, the 2 parties pick their candidates for President, then the public gets to vote for/against one or the other. So once Biden was picked, no risk of the split given traditional Dems and anti-Trump voters only get the choice of Biden.

              1. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Re: Rent a mob

                In fact it's multi-party, though usually 2 are all that control the situation. In 2016 the Bernie party (his affiliation is independent, but he runs on the Dem ticket to get more support) voters, unable to vote for Bernie, stayed home or voted for Trump in anger at the Dem party, letting Trump win. There have been several elections where an Independent candidate got enough support to appear on the ballots. We also have the Green party and some others with little support.

                1. Jellied Eel Silver badge

                  Re: Rent a mob

                  Cheers. I figured vote splitting was more a risk with other votes, ie for Congress. Indies for the top job never really seemed to attract enough votes to make much difference, although I guess that was one of the fears when the 'Tea Party' was a thing.

        4. TheMole

          Re: Rent a mob

          Biden refused to condemn the BLM/Antifa riots that lead to over 30 deaths and thousands of businesses being looted and burnt. Whole city blocks raised.

          Biden's VP even organised bail for the few rioters to actually be apprehended.

          And before the TDS crowd pile on, criticism of Biden does NOT equate to support for Trump.

          1. Mark 110

            Re: Rent a mob

            Two wrongs don't make a right. Saying we can riot cos they did is an imbecilic position.

            BLM were rioting about clear racist police brutality leading to numerous unnecessary deaths of black men over the last few years. And it was a very small proportion of the movement on a very small number of occasions where it got out of control. We have had race riots in this country for similar police brutality and general subjugation and deprivation of sectors of society.

            Comparing those riots to ones incited by the President to try and force people to believe, through violence and insurrection, unsubstantiated claims of election fraud seems slightly bonkers.

            The American right just look like a bunch of bonkers fantasists to us over here, not withstanding things like visible KKK tatoos on some of the leading rioters.

            1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

              Re: Rent a mob

              "The American right just look like a bunch of bonkers fantasists to us over here,"

              Which "right"? The about as far right as the Tories Dems or the even further right Republicans? I find it laughable that Trumpers (not, NOT Republicans in general, just Trumpers) see the Dems as being about to bring in "socialism". The Trumpers have no idea what "socialism" is if they think the right leaning Dems are socialists :-)

            2. W@ldo

              Re: Rent a mob

              Where is "over here"? I would love to go to a place where there are no malefactors. (and no, male is not a gender term, so don't try to use the word femalefactors)

              The image you get from your left-leaning media paints that picture--are there some of those folks over here? Absolutely, but you will be pleasantly surprised to find it is a very small minority. Even better, the community does not tolerate that activity and stands up for the rights of all. Back before the civil rights movement, communities would not make any waves when KKK and other groups did their criminal activity.

              Again, I would love to find out where over here is as maybe I would like to immigrate there. So many want to come to the US even with your perception of KKK everywhere. SMH

              1. Mark 110

                Re: Rent a mob

                UK - we have our own set of delusional fantasists on both left and right. The ones on the left get very few votes. The ones on the right seem to have got into power. But like the US we also have a broken electoral FPTP system which means the majority of the population are governed by someone they didn't vote for.

      2. W@ldo

        Re: Rent a mob

        Right on target--only difference is the letter R or D next to their name. Each party will attempt to divide us during elections and hope they get 50%+1 vote. Watch the next election cycle--same issues will surface as imperatives. Meanwhile, all the ones folks think will change will go nowhere--each side will claim the other side is stalling.

    2. jake Silver badge

      Re: Rent a mob

      PDNFTT

      Ta.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Trollface

      Re: Rent a mob

      Those travel expenses are recompensed, that organizer is salaried, his office rent is reimbursed, the office expenses covered, the staff stipend.

      You seem to be suspiciously knowledgeable about all this. Maybe you should be speaking to the FBI, or perhaps they should be speaking to you.

      Did you personally witness what you claim, or are you just regurgitating/inventing rumour and hearsay?

      But perhaps I am just being over-sensitive, since when did inventing a conspiracy theory ever hurt anyone.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Rent a mob

        "since when did inventing a conspiracy theory ever hurt anyone."

        believing such theories has, and continues to, hurt/kill plenty of people

        1. Loyal Commenter Silver badge

          Re: Rent a mob

          I think, just maybe, the OP was employing irony.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Rent a mob

        "How many Trump flags do we need? Well there are N people coming and M of them already have flags.... can we get a discount if we order more? How much budget do we have for the flags? Whose handling budget? Bob? Who will be handing them out and at what locations?"

        "Be sure to get the money shot with a protestor sitting in Pelosi's chair like he owns her. Take some sort of proof that its her office, a plaque, a personal possession, better still some mail addressed to Pelosi. Promise them pardons, no limits!"

        "Be sure to let them know how to find her office, and to make sure we have the cameras there to record it! It's not real if its not photographed for TV! Who's our media manager for Fox News? Can you make sure they're at the right place for the money shot?"

        ....

        "But perhaps I am just being over-sensitive"

        You think reality TV is real? You think pro-wrestling isn't choreographed? Erm, about Santa....

        1. MrBanana Silver badge

          Re: Rent a mob

          "How many Trump flags do we need?"

          A better question might be how dumb are these protestors that they are waving the national flag of Georgia (the country, a long way away, and somewhat unrelated to this debacle), not the flag of the state of Georgia (which would be more appropriate for protesting the case of the newly elected senators).

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Rent a mob

            Maybe they were inspired by

            https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-georgia-protest-idUKKBN27U0J7

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Rent a mob

      This is a RENT-a-mob. Organized, paid for, coordinated, criminal intimidation mob.

      Yep. Unarguably.

      The only question going is who is funding and controlling the mobs, and what their agenda is. I suspect that if somebody was sufficiently enthusiastic to trace the funds back to source they wouldn't originate in the country.

      Now typically the problem is that each political party wants to protect it's own politcal rent a mobs, however at the moment the republicans are disclaiming that the attack on congress is actually their work, claiming that professional rioters instigated it so for once neither political party in the US has any interest in obstructing any investigation or protecting "their" mob.

      I'd take advantage of the situation and suggest arresting everybody identifiable involved; identify the provocateurs paid by foreign agents and throw the entire law book at them from money laundering to treason while the rare moment of political unity exists.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Stop

        Re: Rent a mob

        I'd take advantage of the situation and suggest arresting everybody identifiable involved; identify the provocateurs paid by foreign agents and throw the entire law book at them from money laundering to treason while the rare moment of political unity exists.

        These conspiracy theories are coming thick and fast now. Why do you think this was organised by foreign agents using paid provocateurs?

        With more than 70 million Trump voters, including some who were extremely vocal during the election and afterwards, why don't you think there are any MAGA hotheads among them who can organize this stuff for themselves?

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          #StopTheSteal

          "These conspiracy theories are coming thick and fast now. Why do you think this was organised by foreign agents using paid provocateurs? With more than 70 million Trump voters, including some who were extremely vocal during the election and afterwards, why don't you think there are any MAGA hotheads among them who can organize this stuff for themselves?"

          He literally announced the protest, time and date on Twitter, from his official account, with the location coordination to be announce later:

          @realDonaldTrump: "The BIG Protest Rally in Washington, D.C., will take place at 11.00 A.M. on January 6th. Locational details to follow. #StopTheSteal!"

          Pathetic, Newt, pathetic.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            WTF?

            Re: #StopTheSteal

            Pathetic, Newt, pathetic.

            Trump doesn't need any encouragement by "foreign agents" to whip up his supporters.

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: #StopTheSteal

              Newt, you said this: "With more than 70 million Trump voters, including some who were extremely vocal during the election and afterwards, why don't you think there are any MAGA hotheads among them who can organize this stuff for themselves?""

              Donald Trump said this: "The BIG Protest Rally in Washington, D.C., will take place at 11.00 A.M. on January 6th. Locational details to follow. #StopTheSteal!"

              How do I know where to be for this protest? What location?

              Which among the 70 million people you claimed organized this, do I contact for the location of the protest that Trump is telling me is at 11:00AM on January 6th???

              Tell me Newt? How do you reconcile your two comments Newt?

              How does this work in your head? Pathetic.

              1. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Re: #StopTheSteal

                "Trump doesn't need any encouragement by "foreign agents" to whip up his supporters."

                I note you edited your comment down to one line. Fine, better, I'm talking to a real person.

                He doesn't need help whipping up his boys. Then why do it? What motivation in trying to keep power at all costs, even at peril of spending the last days of his life in jail?

                What did he do, that causes him to think a coup is better than losing power?

                1. mad_dr

                  Re: #StopTheSteal

                  "Then why do it?"

                  Why do any of the nutcase things he's done?

                  "Some just like to watch the world burn" -Alfred

                2. Alan Brown Silver badge

                  Re: #StopTheSteal

                  "What motivation in trying to keep power at all costs, even at peril of spending the last days of his life in jail?"

                  The factor that out of power, he is quite likely to spend a large chunk of the rest of his life in jail and stripped of whatever wealth he has left will have played into it

                  His past is catching up with him and he's trying deperately to avoid it

                  The best thing anyone can take along to antitrump protests these days are a set of handcuffs to jangle at him

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Rent a mob

          These conspiracy theories are coming thick and fast now. Why do you think this was organised by foreign agents using paid provocateurs?

          Firstly, i'm not American.

          The answer simply is a study of history. There are two ways for a great power to go down. First is being torn apart by external threats, however external threats are the most effective way of binding together disparate groups ever discovered and completely destroying a nation state through external force is both quite difficult and exceedingly expensive. It rarely happens on anything resembling a peer basis. Even when it has happened, it's been rather expensive in lives and money; see Germany during WW2 slowly getting worn down under 3 major empires (American, British & Russian)

          Pretty much every other nation has basically fallen into internal collapse; the Roman empire is the classic case (Gibbons the Rise & Fall of the Roman Empire) though if you go studying history you'll find innumerable cases of it happening from then up until the collapse of the Soviet Union.

          With the advent of Nuclear Weapons direct conflict is outright impossible. Even if it wasn't and we fought a huge way today then the cost would be well above the trillion range, probably into quadrillions. Warfare is for the most part just too expensive now.

          Instead you get proxy wars, and historically the Soviet Union tried funding and equipping terrorist groups to blow things/people up in an incredibly crude method of trying to break down societal bonds in an open society. That is known, admitted and is relatively uncontroversial these days. But what would have Soviet Union have done had they have had the internet to play with and the same aims?

          You'll note the Soviet Union collapsed internally, ending that cold war. It probably hasn't escaped anybodies attention that America is now in the process of going the same way.

          So assume that you were set the task of encouraging the west to break down today: How would you go about it?

          Anybody with at least an average IQ ought to be able to come up with a few ideas pretty easily. Then think; is there any evidence that a nation state is using those techniques?

          So yeah, i'd quite like to see the USA grab every one of the anarchists infesting it's streets that can be identified and go through their entire lives with a fine tooth comb to see what can be found, because personally I think the results would be interesting.

          And even if not, then banging up people who think it's cool to turn peaceful protests into riots would be well worth it for it's own sake simply to enable peaceful protest again.

          1. W@ldo

            Re: Rent a mob

            I love it when non-Americans have all the answers for Americans. One challenge we have is we are an open society--we just cannot round up any and all to go through their entire lives. Because of our split with England a few centuries ago, the founders created a Bill of Rights and a way to amend those rights. It wasn't perfect, but it was a start.

            We let folks in from just about any country--check the net immigration in to the USA vs net out. It's always a much greater number of folks immigrating to the USA. Once someone is a citizen, they get the same rights as all born in the country. To do what you mention would take a very lengthy process and would probably fail as BOTH parties don't want to see those basic rights diminished.

            Try again and read more about USA history and its constitution before you suggest such solutions. Better yet, stick with solving your own country's problems. I stick with mine and don't tell those in the UK how to fix their system.

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: Rent a mob

              Yes, because like most other bits of American law the American Bill of Rights wasn't at all inspired by pre-existing English law. Like the (English) 1689 Bill of Rights for instance.

              If there is reasonable cause to expect that a crime has been committed (you know, for instance riot, trespass, criminal damage etc) then actually you can arrest anybody involved quite legally. You can also investigate the crimes and motives of committing them- again quite legally.

            2. Loyal Commenter Silver badge

              Re: Rent a mob

              we just cannot round up any and all to go through their entire lives.

              Except, of course, that because you don't have Policing by Consent, police overreach means exactly that, along with things like disproportionate use of force towards people with a darker skin tone. Not that we don't have that here, but at least it is recognised, and to some extent, acted on, rather than promoting officers who commit acts of violence against minorities.

    5. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Follow the flags

      See the flags? Do you think they carried all those big coordinated same-sized Trump flags from their home states on the airplanes?

      No, those flags are handed out prior to the attack on Capitol Hill by Trump's men. Find out who had them made, and who was handing them out.

      That Improvised Explosive Device IED they found in Capitol Hill, do you think he carried that on the plane? Of course not, simple probability makes it unlikely he was a local, or it was carried on public transport, so find out who they got it from and who was the target.

      See the Blue Lives Matter flag? A policeman is shot and killed by a fake BLM protestor (actually a Trump Boogaloo Boy called Steven Carrillo)? They push the "blue lives matter flag" for police to rally around as a response to the killing.

      A literal FALSE FLAG OPERATION. They don't get anymore false flag, than trying to substitute the blue lives flag for the (very similar) stars and stripes, on the basis of an organized false killing by one person pretending to be from a group while representing the opposing group! It's almost the definition of a false-flag operation.

      Find out who designed that, who had it made up, who had the bright idea of trying to get the police to rally around a Trump controlled literal false-flag operation, see who the marketing for it was, and find the linkage.

      Follow the flags.

      You also see how you cannot rely on the National Guard. Trump didn't call them out at all! Pence finally stepped in and called out the National Guard. He did that only after the mob called for Pence to be killed and after the coup had clearly failed. You cannot rely on the Department of Justice either. Bill Barr has removed all the career prosecutors and replaced them with Trump men.

      Republicans think they're making TV, some sort of fake reality show where they are heroes posing for Fox News cameras. All sorts of harmless political games. Harmless. How quaint.

      Do you think he wouldn't nuke California to keep power? Do you think he wouldn't nuke Georgia to keep Republican states in compliance? You need to remove him. No delay. This is not TV.

      1. Jellied Eel Silver badge

        Re: Follow the false flags

        You also see how you cannot rely on the National Guard. Trump didn't call them out at all!

        See.. the funny thing about the American Republic is it has a system of consitutional checks & balances that divvy up power. Or divvy up Maryland to create DC, and making that a bit of an oddity. Like it has it's own National Guard, reporting to the President.. and/or Sec. Def/Congress. And which can be called out when local law enforcement can no longer maintain control. Those bits report to DC's Mayor (Democrat), who did eventually ask for the Guard's help, along with other Federal agencies.

        And then there's.. the composition of DC's Army National Guard. Like it has the 257th Army Band, who could have put on a bit of a show. Or perhaps more usefully, the 372nd Military Police Battalion, but that I think is only really two companys.

        But details, details. I'm sure once Biden's in the hot seat, he can defund the police & solve all America's problems..

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Follow the false flags

          Deflection.

          https://edition.cnn.com/2021/01/06/politics/pence-national-guard/index.html

          "Vice President Mike Pence, not President Donald Trump, helped facilitate the decision to mobilize members of the DC National Guard Wednesday when violence at the US Capitol building started to escalate, according to a source familiar with the move and public comments from top officials."

          "As the chaos unfolded, doubts were raised about whether Trump would order the DC National Guard to respond due to the slowness of the response. Public statements by acting Defense Secretary Christopher Miller and other top officials suggested it was Pence who ultimately approved the decision."

          "Republican House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy sidestepped questions Wednesday night about whether Pence, not Trump, directed the DC National Guard to be activated but suggested the vice president ultimately approved the decision."

          "Asked by Fox News about reporting that Pence, not the President, approved the activation, McCarthy demurred, but ultimately said: "I know the vice president has been in constant contact with us and also along with security inside the Capitol, I communicated with the vice president early on. It was in regards to getting the National Guard there. He said he will call right now."

          "The comments appeared to conflict with what White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany said in a tweet hours earlier, when she asserted that Trump "directed" the National Guard to respond to the situation. "

          1. Jellied Eel Silver badge

            Re: Follow the false flags

            Deflection.

            https://edition.cnn.com/2021/01/06/politics/pence-national-guard/index.html

            "Vice President Mike Pence, not President Donald Trump, helped facilitate the decision to mobilize members of the DC National Guard Wednesday when violence at the US Capitol building started to escalate, according to a source familiar with the move and public comments from top officials."

            Ah, CNN. Always studiously neutral when it comes to all things Trump. But not sure what you're trying to say here? Trump should have immediately assumed Muriel Bowser's incompetence, instead of waiting for her to request the National Guard? Or that control over the Guard should be changed so the President can call it out on demand rather than going via the Sec.Def etc?

            But that's something Biden can probably change, ie removing the current delegations and implementing direct authority as his own Palace Guard.. Time will tell, as will investigations into the actual events, rather than 'anonymous sources' and up-to-the-minute ass covering.

          2. Loyal Commenter Silver badge

            Re: Follow the false flags

            Reality is often in conflict with what Kayleigh McEnany says.

            1. jake Silver badge

              Re: Follow the false flags

              For rather large values of often.

      2. MrBanana Silver badge

        Re: Follow the flags

        "No, those flags are handed out prior to the attack on Capitol Hill by Trump's men. Find out who had them made, and who was handing them out."

        As I posted above - whatever dumb ass is handing them out mixed up Georgia (the country) and Georgia (the US state).

      3. Alan Brown Silver badge

        Re: Follow the flags

        "Pence finally stepped in and called out the National Guard. He did that only after the mob called for Pence to be killed and after the coup had clearly failed"

        In other areas, people have commented how this is reminiscent of the Munich Putsch of 1923 and what it set in motion (was the Putsch a failure, or did it lay groundwork for future action?)

    6. W@ldo

      Re: Rent a mob

      Keep drinking your cool-aid and spinning these narratives. Your time will come when whatever political leadership is in power doesn't align with your beliefs. I'm not for either one and can sit on the side and eat popcorn while these games play out.

      Don't trust ANY politician--pro tip: They are all in it for themselves. Look at net worth for each upon entering, look at their relatively small salary, then look at their net worth every 2, 4 or 6 years. They are all either brilliant investors or grifters. My money is on the latter.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Rent a mob

        So maybe follow the "we the people" instead of individuals?

        1 out of 1 will act in their self interests.

        1 out of 2 will fight for dominance in limited supply

        1 of 10, well in a limited supply situation, 6 will group around a leader to maximize their chances, and 4 will suffer.

        In a democracy, leaders try to benefit as many people as possible to win the majority. They group different disadvantaged groups to fix the disadvantage. Over time they fix problems to benefit everyone.

        The core problem is when you start electing people who don't have the people behind them. Then it becomes about limiting the vote to the subset of people who *do* support you. Trump lost the 2016 vote. He won anyway. That's the problem. Why help the majority when you can define the minority that will get you power?

        Republicans need to rethink their choices.

        None of them want to live in China, none of them want to be at the whim of Trump (or Jared or Baron or whoever inherits that power), or Xi.

        Do they really want to live outside the democracy? No.

        This coup ends.

        1. W@ldo

          Re: Rent a mob

          Sorry, we don't have a democracy in the USA. It is a representative republic. If the USA was a democracy it would look like the west Coast USA and the northeast USA. Total control by democrats and net population losses of folks leaving those "democracies". You see, when you get a democracy you actual have mob rule--all you need to do is get enough folks on your side and your side wins, or does it?

          In my state, we tell all the NY & CA transplants to leave their politics at home. It doesn't really work, but it does make them think a short minute about why they left.

          Find some old high school textbooks on civics as it covers in great detail about how our county is a republic and why the founders feared a true democracy. The schools dumbing folks down has been a political strategy too. Don't take it personally, as your parents made the choice to put you into public school.

      2. PTW

        Re: Harry Truman

        “Show me a man that gets rich by being a politician, and I'll show you a crook.”

        Obama: https://www.afr.com/work-and-careers/management/the-obamas-are-worth-30-times-more-than-when-they-entered-the-white-house-20180912-h159bg

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Harry Truman

          "From speaking at events around the world to writing a memoir and, most recently, signing a massive production deal with Netflix,.... "

          Did you think nobody would follow your link? Obama made that money *after* being in power.

          1. Mark 110

            Re: Harry Truman

            And he'd been a politician for a very very long time without getting incredibly rich before he got to be president.

        2. Outski Bronze badge

          Re: Harry Truman

          Hmm, two highly successful, multi-million selling authors make money. Colour me shocked.

      3. Mark 110

        Re: Rent a mob

        "Look at net worth for each upon entering, look at their relatively small salary, then look at their net worth every 2, 4 or 6 years. They are all either brilliant investors or grifters. My money is on the latter."

        Not sure Biden will have a deal of time left to increase his net worth after this gig.

    7. PTW

      Re: Rent a mob

      Good {deity} it's you AGAIN!

      See:

      ----------------------------------------

      https://forums.theregister.com/forum/all/2020/12/15/solar_winds_update/

      Re: orphans

      Oh, dear me, you're a bit ranty ac, are you the same ac that always posted those dreary, and oh so long, pro-Democrat posts on every thread here pre-election? Asking for a friend.

      *I have no donkey, or elephant, in the race, [they] [edit: your posts] just bored me to tears

      -------------------------------------

      The only mobs are Bacon Lettuce Mayo and antifa [fascist] mobs. Or are you telling me it's been Republican supporters burning the cities for the past 6 months!?

      Just fucking STOP! FFS!

      I've just had a thought, is that you Kieren? "The Russians are coming!" :'D

    8. Lars Silver badge
      Thumb Down

      Re: Rent a mob

      I suppose Trump has to read Mein Kampf again, then again he is not apparently much of a reader. His "brown shirts" are rather pathetic in that comparison, luckily.

  3. Danny 2 Silver badge
    Megaphone

    Old tech

    I hope and expect Biden will prioritise hearing aid technology, chair-lifts, motorised zimmer frames and heated, bouncy pavements. This is a president who can be assassinated by a patch of pavement ice - black ice matters!

    Plus a new generation of Google Glass, just built into Aviators.

    "Joe, that is your daughter, the other one is your wife"

    1. Khaptain Silver badge

      Re: Old tech

      Well done Danny , that had me chuckling this morning.

      1. LogicGate

        Re: Old tech

        Yep.. this is EXACTLY the right time to go Biden-Bashing...

        Should we maybe pick up tan-suit-gate as well?

        1. Danny 2 Silver badge

          Re: Old tech

          Sorry LogicGate, I wasn't Biden bashing.

          I've posted here a lot about how I've been looking after my elderly parents this year, well, last year. And trying to use tech to help them where they will submit to it.

          When I mock the elderly it is entirely heartfelt.

          [I still say Captain Tom cheated by using a wheeled zimmer on his so called sponsored 'walk'.]

          1. Danny 2 Silver badge

            Re: Old tech

            So. slightly funny but really just typical. I got my octogenarian mum into 'Corner Gas', which she loves and laughs at loudly. My dad resents that but he agreed to watch an episode. He turned it off after five minutes saying, "Am I supposed to laugh at that?" At least he gave it a fair chance.

            And then he stood up, pirouetted twice and fell to the floor. I resisted the urge to say, "Am I supposed to laugh at that?"

            It's weird there is a minimum age for US President but no maximum age. I think the minimum age should be 52, and the maximum age 53.

            1. LogicGate

              Re: Old tech

              Lemme guess: You are 52 & 1/2?

              Anyway, while not being a US national, seeing what the banana republican party and their dear leader has done to the once proud nation has left my nerves bit on edge.

              While I agree that a somewhat younger president elect would have been desirable, this one seems substantially more aware and eloquent than the burning garbage bin of the last few ears. This is why I do not think that complaining about Biden's age is justified.

              1. elip

                Re: Old tech

                The age is directly correlated with his senility.

                1. HausWolf

                  Re: Old tech

                  trump is soon to be 74, he is no spring chicken and well into the age dementia starts to manifest itself. One could argue his behavior is more erratic than Biden's

                  1. Mark 110

                    Re: Old tech

                    He does sound increasingly confused and irrational everytime he opens his mouth.

                    1. W@ldo

                      Re: Old tech

                      Which one? I say both!

              2. Danny 2 Silver badge

                Re: Old tech

                LogicGate,

                52 & ½? I wish! Back then I was just a kid with a crazy dream.

                Anyway, sadly, I am nationally disbarred from being the leader of the free world. I am also legally barred from travelling to Prestwick to oppose Trump's flight from justice, because some of us take Covid seriously.

              3. W@ldo

                Re: Old tech

                Please tell us what perfect country you are from??? And why you would even care about US politics? Could it be the constant BBC propaganda being pumped in your head? Just a guess.

                Biden was chosen because the old democratic party members wanted someone they can control--there were plenty of qualified candidates along the way that would have been better choices. Why do you think they approved of Kamala? She didn't even make it to a primary as her popularity was so low--they knew she too would be a tool of the party and not have an original thought.

                1. LogicGate

                  Re: Old tech

                  I am not from a perfect country. I was born in the European country of my father. I pre-schooled Japan (although my mother had spent 3 years in a Japanese prison camp during WW2). I returned "home" to get my schooling I moved to the European country of my mother in order to study. While studing, I met the person who is now my wife, who also has dual nationality, on of them American. We now live in a 3rd European country, and the kids have four nationalities.

                  Before Covid, I would travel to the US once or twice a year in order to spend time with family. We follow US politics closely, and we have friends working on the frontlie in US healthcare. I AM in a position to compare. US society has it's advantages, but it also have many disadvantages. What I have seen lately bears scary resemblances to Europe in the late thirties. Sometimes, and this was many times the case with regards to Germany in those years, it is easier to recognize that things are heading in the wrong direction if you are on the outside looking in.

                  Please understand that what you are seeing in these forums are people crying in frustration at what you are doing to yourself (and to the rest of the world), rather than gloating. It is much the same as when I am commenting on the stupidity of the British Brexit.

                  1. W@ldo

                    Re: Old tech

                    Japan is a great country--except, if you are not Japanese you are treated like crap in the business world. An American immigrating to a homogenous country such as Japan will experience things that those claiming racism in the USA experience. Now, let's have an African-American business person try to setup shop in Japan--there is absolutely zero chance of success. Put some names of American immigrants to Japan that have become successful.

                    Are Japanese racists? Hard to tell as on the surface they will treat you with respect, but behind the scenes they will blacklist you. So, when you fix the Japanese racism, please give us a call about US politics. If you are in such a great position to observe the US, maybe you should turn inward and look at what others would face in your own country.

    2. sabroni Silver badge

      Re: "Joe, that is your daughter, the other one is your wife"

      Trump's the one who likes to confuse his wife with this daugher.

      "I've said if Ivanka weren't my daughter perhaps I'd be dating her."

      "Is it wrong to be more sexually attracted to your own daughter than your wife?"

      1. John H Woods Silver badge

        Re: "Joe, that is your daughter, the other one is your wife"

        "Is it wrong to be more sexually attracted to your own daughter than your wife?"

        Probably couldn't be wronger. Oh, wait, let's just check what age Ivanka was when he was alleged to have said this ... ah, yes - 13. So yes, it is even more wrong than it looks at first glance.

        1. Fruit and Nutcase Silver badge

          Re: "Joe, that is your daughter, the other one is your wife"

          This is no better...

          'Look at that piece of a--,' Cohen recalls Trump saying, as he whistled and pointed," according to Vanity Fair. "'I would love some of that.' It so happened that Trump was referring to Cohen's then 15-year-old daughter, Samantha."

          https://edition.cnn.com/2020/09/14/politics/samantha-cohen-donald-trump-cnntv/index.html

  4. jake Silver badge

    Might as well throw Right To Repair into that mix.

    It's a far more important issue than most people think it is.

    If you don't believe me, ask a local farmer their opinion of John Deer.

    1. chivo243 Silver badge

      Re: Might as well throw Right To Repair into that mix.

      So right, I have an uncle who farms, and the cuss filled stories about trying to get service from JD made even me blush... Nothing runs like a Deere and nothing stinks like a john...

  5. macjules Silver badge
  6. sbt Silver badge
    Unhappy

    Any real reform will fall to the filibuster

    Joe Manchin will not allow its abolition.

    Oh well.

  7. Cederic Silver badge

    Biden is irrelevant

    May I be the first to congratulate Kamala Harris on being the first female President of the United States?

    It's her views and policies on big tech that we really need to explore and understand - unless of course you think she's beholden to the monied interests that put her into the role despite being one of the least popular candidates in the primaries.

    1. This post has been deleted by a moderator

      1. John H Woods Silver badge

        Re: Biden is irrelevant

        Biden and Harris earned each other's mutual respect, however guarded. Not necessarily a bad thing if they aren't exactly of the same opinions: Pence has been Trump's most loyal servant. That didn't work out too great for Trump, Pence or the USA.

        What the world needs isn't uniformity of political opinion: it needs people of different political opinions to be able to work together. We're starting to see what happens when at least one side progresses from "oh, we think we'd do a much better job than them" to "they are an existential threat to our nation"

        1. W@ldo

          Re: Biden is irrelevant

          Save this post--the ink won't be dry after Biden is sworn in until Kamala turns on him. Of course, it will appear to be others....

  8. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

    There seem to be a few of you who denigrate age.

    Have you considered that those of us in our 70s were once as young as you are now - whatever that might be? Have you gone a step further and considered the possibility that you will be in your 70s in due course?

    If being that age is such a great disadvantage in itself what are you going to do about avoiding that situation yourselves? Change the laws of physics to reverse the flow of time? Top yourselves? Or just grow up and drop your blinkered perspectives?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Age

      I'm in my mid fifties and I'm already facing it. I mean, growing old sucks, but it is at least better than the alternative.

    2. Danny 2 Silver badge
    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      With age comes wisdom. Allegedly.

      Old age and treachery beats youth and enthusiasm every time.

  9. sanmigueelbeer Silver badge

    I really am going to pity the Secret Service agent who will be assigned in protecting Donald when he leaves office.

    I mean, seriously, other past presidents would need protection because they (may) have made a lot of enemies due to their foreign policies.

    But Donald? Oh no. He will need serious protection from porn star to home-grown, home-brew-crackpots.

    Any Secret Service agent who will be assigned to Donald? It is not an assignment worth bragging about. Agents assigned to Donald will consider it a form of "punishment".

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      It's not that hard to protect a former president. Bill Clinton showed how to even shake off the protection and go to Epstein's island.

    2. Grunchy

      Prison guards? If you need to protect somebody, just put em in solitary. Easy.

      1. sanmigueelbeer Silver badge
        Holmes

        Prison guards? If you need to protect somebody, just put em in solitary. Easy.

        But that would mean Donald will not be able to use Twitter ... Hang on a minute, guv. I think you're onto somethin'.

    3. Loyal Commenter Silver badge

      The real danger to him will come from some of his "less-than-stable" supporters when they flip to the next conspiracy theory and start believing he has betrayed them in some way. We've already seen that they are willing to attempt armed insurrection and are stupid enough to ignore warnings about being shot in the chest. It will only take one "lucky" one.

      Just to be clear - I am in no way endorsing that sort of behaviour, but those nutters are out there, and, it seems, in numbers.

  10. lglethal Silver badge
    Facepalm

    What do you call it when a group of armed intruders attack a parliament and try to force their leader to be placed in a positiion of power (or continued power in this case)?

    A Coup. Or when it fails an Attempted Coup.

    Coups and Attempted Coups are the beloved terrain of Banana Republics across the globe. Congratulations America, you are now officially the largest Banana Republic in the world. Oh well it's a status that's been building for a while with your hyperpartisan 2 party politics. The last 4 years just brought it into starker focus.

    Enjoy your new status and notice how no one in the rest of the world takes you quite as seriously anymore.

    1. W@ldo

      It kills me that other countries poke fun at the lower moments in US history--yep, they are all embarrassing.

      One question--Why is the US the most desired country for those seeking immigration? Beyond the BS politics the media spins, the US has the greatest opportunities for success. Many of US citizens' stories are those of immigration & success.

      Enjoy your completely socialist country while those in the US try to diminish that influence.

      1. PTW

        US

        I'm a conservative, since I was able to think for myself. But having to work 2 or 3 jobs and having to pay obummer care. Added to your "most money wins" justice system, no thanks! But better than 14th Century Islamabad I suppose.

        In the [almost]civilised world, we like 20+ days paid holiday a year, healthcare [of some sort], and not "admit to this" or we'll charge you with crimes that mean you are sentenced to 4000 years in prison.

        Been to the US twice, the country is amazing, the US citizens without passports seem to be about the same. I can understand the preppers and those that want to run for the hills. Weird that I was raised in during the cold war but see Russia as the more free of the two nations.

        1. Eclectic Man Silver badge

          Re: US (Affordable Care Act)

          "having to pay obummer care"

          In the UK we call it National Insurance, and it pays for the National Health Service (free at the point of delivery*). I was once offered a job Germany, and found out that over half my gross pay would go on taxes, mandatory pension contributions and mandatory health care payments (Germany's version of the NHS is better funded and and better run than the NHS, as is France's). The USA's Affordable Care Act was one of the beacons of civilisation, stating clearly that everyone was valued and that no one should have to choose between health care and bankruptcy in a civilised country.

          *I've had an operation for cancer free on the NHS, and innumerable courses of antibiotics, and other treatments, as have members of my family and friends. Don't knock universal healthcare until you've experienced both it and its absence.

          1. elip

            Re: US (Affordable Care Act)

            You're severely confusing the ACA and a nationalized healthcare as seen in Europe. The ACA aka Romneycare, was primarily designed to force *more* customers onto private insurance company plans. It worked, United Healthcare is steadily in the Fortune 5-10 since the ACA was passed. Thankfully the mandate has been mostly rolled back (at least the unconstitutional fees have). We desperately need a "nationalized" healthcare system in the US, though its much more likely to function if created at the individual state level.

            1. Eclectic Man Silver badge

              Re: US (Affordable Care Act)

              "You're severely confusing the ACA and a nationalized healthcare as seen in Europe."

              I admit that, but, the ACA is the closest thing to a national healthcare system the USA has. It was promoted, I believe, because any attempt to introduce legislation for a genuinely national health service in the USA supported by taxation, rather than insurance premiums, would have been shouted down as 'Communist, Liberal, Socialist' plot. The ACA included federal financial support for those unable to pay the subs (i.e., the poorest).

            2. W@ldo

              Re: US (Affordable Care Act)

              Really???? Nationalized healthcare? Study medicare or any other government run healthcare program. It's not free, it won't pay for everything, and you'll see providers dropping out.

              For real, take some time to look at how gov run health is run....

              1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

                Re: US (Affordable Care Act)

                We are very well aware of how it's run. It appears that you aren't because you've not noticed the significant bit which I'll emphasise for you: free at the point of delivery.

                There may be a number of issues about how its run but that central point is crucial to its nature. Feel free to re-read that until you understand just how important it is.

          2. Grunchy

            Re: US (Affordable Care Act)

            Health care insurance is just as communist as automobile insurance or life insurance or homeowners insurance. As if, what! A tornado is coming to knock down my house or damage my car, I don’t ruddy well think so! Or “covid is threatening my life,” nice try, commie. Got vodka to go with those peanuts?

          3. W@ldo

            Re: US (Affordable Care Act)

            You are missing a few details about the so called Affordable Care Act. It was well intended, but failed miserably. First, all legislation that has a feel good name is usually just the opposite. The ACA made it possible for folks to buy health insurance, but the market rates were outrageous. Many bought high cost and low benefit insurance or opted to just pay the fine for not having insurance. Yes, if you did not have ACA insurance you had to pay a fine. Congress voted to drop many of those provisions, but that really gutted any chance of the ACA being a success. The only good thing that happened is those with pre-existing conditions would no longer be penalized.

            Medicare you say? Even the elderly (I'm in that age group), continues to pay for medicare once you are required to move from your very good private insurance to medicare. There are different parts of medicare that cover different things--they have made that very expensive for the elderly and even worse difficult to follow. When young folks say "medicare for all" I say put 1000 of them on it for a year and have them report back to others--they will find out it is not free, it is not comprehensive, it does not cover everything and it is not accepted everywhere.

            We can obviously do better with healthcare, but a gov run system isn't the answer. Just ask those from the UK, EU and other places that come to the USA for surgery they would have to wait a long time in their home countries.

            1. Eclectic Man Silver badge

              Re: US (Affordable Care Act)

              Hi W@ldo, "We can obviously do better with healthcare, but a gov run system isn't the answer. Just ask those from the UK, EU and other places that come to the USA for surgery they would have to wait a long time in their home countries."

              I've had surgery on the NHS on three occasions without having to wait very long. I've had many courses of antibiotics, asthma drugs and, yes, anti-depressants, all 'on the NHS' only paying prescription charges ( but not any more as I'm now 60 and get free prescriptions). There are vastly more people treated on the NHS than travel to the USA, or anywhere else, for surgery.

              Yes there are some specific cases, Iran is a surprising hot spot for gender re-assignment surgery. We will all be getting an anti Covid-19 vaccination free of charge, as we get MMR free of charge as children (unless our parents object).

              You need to distinguish between essential operations, elective surgery that is provided by the NHS, and optional surgery not approved by NICE* for NHS provision. Could you provide a reference to what operations you claim people get in the USA that they'd have to wait for in the UK and the EU, please?

              * The UK's National Institute for Health and Care Excellence

      2. Eclectic Man Silver badge

        "Why is the US the most desired country for those seeking immigration?"

        I'm not sure that is true. It may seem like that to USAfolk but then there is a long southern border with Mexico, which is in the grip of drug cartels. Other options for emigration from Mexico include Latin American countries ravaged by militias and 'police' services trained in abduction, assassination and torture by the CIA. The USA even mined El Salvadorean harbours whilst ostensibly not even being at war with them. Some USAfolk decided to emigrate to Canada when same sex marriage was made legal (ignorant of the fact that it was already legal in Canada).

        Europe too has immigration issues, from Syria and North Africa. Basically immigration is from a bad country to somewhere less bad that you can get to by foot, road or any other means available. The USA is within walking distance of Mexico, but not North Korea, Yemen, South Sudan, Libya, Turkmenistan, etc.

        1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

          I'd guess W@ldo is referring to the fact that its visa system allows for tech jobs to be paid a bit more then the going rates in really low wage countries so as to ensure the tech behemoths in the US are able to get away with paying less than what would be the market rate otherwise. Whether the US tech population regards that as enthusiastically as W@ldo is questionable.

      3. Loyal Commenter Silver badge

        Why is the US the most desired country for those seeking immigration?

        Got any figures to back that up, or do you just "reckon so"?

        1. W@ldo

          Here are some sites that have figures for you...all are based on UN & USA census numbers. One important piece of info is the numbers only count legal immigration--the illegal immigration numbers are even higher. Good idea to question any claim that involves numbers!

          List of top 5 aggregated immigration, USA #1 by far

          https://citizenpath.com/countries-with-the-most-immigrants/

          Net migration to the USA:

          https://www.census.gov/library/stories/2019/12/net-international-migration-projected-to-fall-lowest-levels-this-decade.html

          Net migration to the UK:

          https://migrationobservatory.ox.ac.uk/resources/briefings/long-term-international-migration-flows-to-and-from-the-uk/

      4. This post has been deleted by its author

      5. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

        "One question--Why is the US the most desired country for those seeking immigration? "

        Probably the historic welcome the US used to give immigrants, the oppotunities that used to be there and that they are coming from places where they don't get the really see what it's really like before they get there.

        The same happens in the UK. Why else would so many refugees and migrants be trying to illegally cross the Channel when, to do so, they have passed through at least two, possibly many more, EU countries to get here. "The streets are paved with gold" syndrome can be quite strong in some places when deciding where to go. (Other reasons too, eg ex-colonies, so leaving a changed or poor country to go to the "mother country" where things might be a bit more familiar such as their 2nd language being English. Similar happens with people leaving French ex-colonies, which probably doesn't apply to US immigrants)

      6. W@ldo

        I love all the thumbs downs by the group thinkers in IT. You will see this pivot on you in your lifetime and with gusto.

        1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

          "You will see this pivot on you "

          Is that the word of the day? It seems to get used a lot lately, oten as a short-hand for something vaguely related to a U-turn or "bitten in the ass" or simply changing direction. In most cases it seems to me that's a lazy use of a single word giving a much more vague meaning than is intended. It sounds like the sort of MBA speak intended to allow weaselling out of something later.

    2. Grunchy

      Oh, the USA backs coups all the time. Get real.

    3. MrBanana Silver badge
      Joke

      "Coups and Attempted Coups are the beloved terrain of Banana Republics across the globe."

      I think the average Banana Republic would look at this and shake their heads in dismay.

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Facepalm

      What do you call it when a group of armed intruders attack a parliament and try to force their leader to be placed in a positiion of power (or continued power in this case)?

      A Coup. Or when it fails an Attempted Coup.

      Coups and Attempted Coups are the beloved terrain of Banana Republics across the globe. Congratulations America, you are now officially the largest Banana Republic in the world. Oh well it's a status that's been building for a while with your hyperpartisan 2 party politics. The last 4 years just brought it into starker focus.

      Enjoy your new status and notice how no one in the rest of the world takes you quite as seriously anymore.

      Yes, the old joke always used to be: Bolivia, the country that times its history in revolutions per minute.

      What's remarkable about the US events is that normally a coup installs a new leader and a counter-coup reinstalls the old leader. Once again Donald has managed to even turn that on its head.

      The only thing missing was an offer from Grenada to invade the US and restore the democratically elected government.

  11. Cynic_999 Silver badge

    Democracy

    If there is one thing that the USA has taught us, it is that democracy (US style) is always delivered via bombs and guns. So if that is true when democracy is being pushed on foreign countries, why should it not be the case in the USA also? Also, if its OK to manipulate elections in other countries to ensure they get leaders favourable to US interests, why would it be wrong to do the same in the US?

    Good old America - reaping what it sows.

    1. W@ldo

      Re: Democracy

      No doubt, wars and meddling is bad. Let's get a global treaty for all to stop the badness. That is so laughable as all countries have their share of dirty tricks. Even the most trusted of all in the UK have independent actors that perform actions that would make the Queen blush.

      I was in the UK early last year and was on a train ride in London and the BBC was feeding its citizens line after line of BS about the US. If the sun came up and someone was sunburned they would add something like "because of Trump's environmental policies, x number of the people sunbathing were burned". It was hilarious as EVERY US news story added a Trump dig. I'm no fan of Trump, in fact I don't like him period, but you folks are being controlled by your media. Read 1984 & Animal Farm--we had to back in my day and it makes it easy to understand what is going on.

      1. Teiwaz

        Re: Democracy

        the BBC was feeding its citizens line after line of BS

        You were getting the hang of the country well then. Complaining about the BBCs biases comes from all the political spectrum usually.

      2. John H Woods Silver badge

        Re: Democracy

        W@ldo, we've all read Animal Farm and 1984. You recommending them to us is like hearing self-confessed Black-ops aficionados exclaim, incredulously, "Reznov's not real?". It just makes us wonder how you can have missed the point by such a wide margin.

        See also one of the idiotic 'Pillage People' from the recent half-arsed attempted coup, with the The Outsiders Mark tattooed on his hand --- someone who clearly hasn't realised that Dishonoured isn't exactly a game with a conservative message!

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Democracy

          >>The Outsiders Mark tattooed on his hand -

          Oh, you mean the "Antifa communist tattoo" 'proving' that this was all a liberal conspiracy to discredit the Proud Boys and the KKK?

          1. John H Woods Silver badge

            Re: Democracy

            Hah, yes, definitely the Outsiders Mark tho

            1. Danny 2 Silver badge

              Re: Democracy

              I'd never heard of the Outsiders Mark. This is maybe a wee bit funny though. Well, I find it funny.

              I was a peace protesting anarchist who committed a fair amount of 'malicious mischief' (vandalism), that I used to sign with a stencilled black thistle.

              Then a bunch of Scottish fascists stood for election as 'independents' and they chose my black thistle as their dog whistle graphic. They got all the police interest for my previous works!

              [I hate that the front page of the i yesterday was "Anarchy in the USA". It's so demeaning to anarchists to be compared to obvious fascists]

              My point is you have to be aware of the iconography of your opponents.

              1. John H Woods Silver badge

                Re: Democracy

                Absolutely.

                By the way, I would like to withdraw the term Pillage People and replace it with something more appropriate (thanks to my little bro) ... "Vanilla Isis"

                1. Anonymous Coward
                  Anonymous Coward

                  Re: Democracy

                  Y'allQueda affiliates and other YeeHawdists.

                  1. jake Silver badge
                    Pint

                    Re: Democracy

                    ::snort::

                    You owe me a new keyboard.

                    Have a beer :-)

  12. Eclectic Man Silver badge

    Appointments

    Surely one of the new President Biden's most pressing activities will be appointing people to all those posts that Trump left vacant throughout most or all of his time in office?

    From Politico:

    "The latest data illuminates the extent to which the Trump administration has struggled to fill jobs as it heads into its fourth year on Monday. Of the 714 key positions requiring Senate confirmation, 515 of them have a confirmed nominee in place — with 170 positions having no nominee, according to the latest tracking from the partnership."*

    https://www.politico.com/news/2020/01/20/trumps-staffing-struggle-unfilled-jobs-100991

    OK so it is nearly a year out of date, but I do not recall any news on Trump 'catching up' with nominations to posts, and the current secretary of defense has not been confirmed after Esper quit / was fired recently.

    1. HausWolf

      Re: Appointments

      He was stacking the federal courts with semi and unqualified judges.

      1. Eclectic Man Silver badge

        Re: Appointments

        Indeed, but some of those judges are the ones who threw out the attempts to protest the election result due to alleged fraudulent voting. ("How sharper than a serpent's tooth it is to have a thankless child!" - Shakespear, King Lear)

  13. Strongbow

    White Elephant

    Nuclear arsenal. That nutcase still got his finger on the button.

    1. W@ldo

      Re: White Elephant

      The president is only one part of the nuclear response. He/she cannot launch any nuclear attack, or defense without multiple consent with the military leadership. Only in the movies can a rogue president do such a thing.

  14. This post has been deleted by its author

    1. Mike 16 Silver badge

      Re: Wait and see

      Of course there's always the cliche "plot twist":

      https://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/TheCallsAreComingFromInsideTheHouse

      (IT Angle? The cartoon accompanying that article)

    2. Cynic_999 Silver badge

      Re: Wait and see

      If it is a state actor involved (or a reasonably competant hacker), you can be pretty sure that the IP address the attack appears to come from is NOT the place it originates.

  15. Grunchy

    Psyche!

    I heard Pence intends to supersede Trump via 5th amendment, then when nobodies looking he steals congress by executive order, pardons himself, and has govornment run out of town on the rail. Then he retires to tahiti where they still have, “tahiti treat.”

    (Epilogue: trump gets demoted to bellhop after putin calls his loans and installs new leadership at the very nice hotel, be a shame if something were to happen to it.)

    1. Eclectic Man Silver badge

      Re: Psyche!

      There has been much debate about whether a sitting president can lawfully use presidential authority to pardon himself. I am no lawyer, but I suspect that self pardoning by a president would be deemed unconstitutional as it would remove Congress' constitutional power to hold the president to account. ("Oh, I've been impeached, have I? As I'm in danger of being found guilty I shall just pardon myself and carry on.")

      And I agree that Trump's financial 'situation' after 20th January will be, 'interesting'.

      1. W@ldo

        Re: Psyche!

        You are conflating a few things--pardoning for any federal crime is what a president can do. A president for example, cannot pardon someone's state/local criminal sentence. Impeachment is not a crime and a president cannot pardon him/her-self from that process. Impeachement is one of several ways to remove a president--first by US House of Representative impeachment, then by the senate to actually remove the president.

        A president has never pardoned themselves as of now, so it is uncharted waters for its constitutionality. If he did it, the state legal actions would have no impact. Trump haters are getting excited really for no reason as if they are hoping for the NY legal actions those are likely to continue. It will set a legal precedent that each side should consider closely--if your intent is to harass a president remember it will cut both ways. Just like all the changes in both houses of congress have come back to bite themselves. A teacher of mine once had a poster with the changed saying of "time heals all wounds" to "time wounds all heels"--trust me, anything done to one will happen to another.

        Folks are relishing in this and I understand it completely. I am no Trump fan, and no Biden fan either. Politicians are about posturing more than helping folks they represent--now, that would be a nice thing to change.

    2. Outski Bronze badge

      Re: Psyche!

      PoO: I think you mean 25th Amendment. The 5th Amendment guards against self-incrimination, the 25th provides a path for removal of a President considered no longer capable of performing the duties of the Office by reason of mental or physical impairment.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Psyche!

        > PoO: I think you mean 25th Amendment. The 5th Amendment guards against self-incrimination

        I'm fairly sure Trump will claim the phrase "take the 5th" means he can take it with him as a souvenir when he leaves office. ;-)

  16. martinusher Silver badge

    I'm not optimistic

    I don't think anything will change because the people involved -- be it Trump, Biden or whoever -- haven't a real clue what's going on or why, they have to rely on advisers. Add to this the notion that the Federal governemnt is in such a mess that unwinding sanctions (many enthusiastically supported by Democrats) and entity list entries (ditto) will be a fair way down the ToDo list. Its going to take all of the energy of the incoming Administration to just stabilize the situation and restore some measure of integrity to the government. (Its reckoned to be a similar situation to Ford after Nixon; I think the place is in far more of a shables than post-Nixon.)

    I don't know the exact motivations of the rioters yesterday, I suppose they figured that if they delayed the formal counting of the electoral college votes then Trump would remain President indefinitely. This isn't what would happen -- if for some reason Congress fails to finish counting these votes by the 20th then the Speaker of the House -- Nancy Pelosi -- assumes the role of President until the task is complted.

    The scenes yesterday looked like yet another color revolution. (Some wag pointed out that all that was missing is Victoria Nuland and her cookies.) Its actually a bit pointless to do this in the US because of the diffuse mechanism of government. Unlike many countries where you just capture a handful of key buildings and (usually with the cooperation of the military) you're the new government in the US all that would happen is that you end up damaging some historic buildings. Government will just go on around, and despite, you. This is what gave rise to the myth of the Deep State -- its not a conspiracy so much as "All of Us". What we did experience -- and have been experiencing for the last few years -- is a bona fide capture of our government by non-democratic interests, aided and abetted by a political party that really should know better. I hope the lesson has been well learned.

    1. Jellied Eel Silver badge

      Re: I'm not optimistic

      The scenes yesterday looked like yet another color revolution. (Some wag pointed out that all that was missing is Victoria Nuland and her cookies.

      Funny you should say that, but she was tapped for Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs only the previous day.. Spooky, huh? Confirmation obviously isn't likely to be a problem now, cookies for Tehran.. might be.

  17. Bruce Ordway

    Section 230...the real issue

    >> fake news, misinformation, and offensive content

    Yes, I have mixed feelings about this.

    When I was a kid, people with "fringe" might have a small storefront and pass out pamplets on a corner.

    Now everyone has the ability to publish anything, and with instant, international exposure.

    Luckily, for all of us it's not against the law to be an asshole...yet.

    I'm all for freedom... of speech, to be an idiot if you want, etc...

    But there sure seem to be a lot more individuals going beyond the reasonable lines all the time... and that look to ruin things for all of us in the future?

    I'm not sure how the government can ever handle individuals who lie, incite, etc... without some changes to the protections to the enterprises that provide the publishing platforms?

    1. Jellied Eel Silver badge

      Re: Section 230...the real issue

      I'm not sure how the government can ever handle individuals who lie, incite, etc... without some changes to the protections to the enterprises that provide the publishing platforms?

      Usually badly. Lies are the new norm. Facts are routinely checked before actual facts can be established, so sometimes the lie turns out to be the truth. That's something that's been happening increasingly over the last few years. Unarmed person gets shot, cue riots/protests. Investigation might later discover that the unarmed person was actually armed, but those investigations take time. US police seem to be responding to that challenge with stuff like releasing bodycam footage faster, but that still may not appear until after the fires have gone out from the protests. And even with better evidence, people still might not choose to believe any new 'truth' because the previous lie had been fact checked as truth.

      It can all be a tad confusing.

      Or there's Joe-

      https://www.rt.com/usa/511851-biden-pelosi-capitol-riot-terrorists/

      “They weren't protesters. Don't dare call them protesters. They were a riotous mob, insurrectionists, domestic terrorists,” Biden said.

      “For four years we have had a president who has made his contempt for our democracy, our constitution, the rule of law clear in everything he has done.”

      Which is interesting given Biden's refusal to condemn previous riots, and instead preferring to view them as protected 1st Amendment peaceful riots. Same with the rule of law. Many of the previous peaceful protestors weren't charged, or DA's refused to charge/prosecute, which paved the way for yesterday.. Or will be a soundbite Biden may come to regret the next time peaceful protestors start burning & looting.

      Some of that at least is already sort of defined in law, although sometimes difficult to prove, or convict. So I tweet "Hey everyone, let's go burn down a Portland police station" and that might be considered incitement. But I was just kidding, and it didn't really burn much anyway, and I wasn't charged or anything, so where's the crime man?

      So perhaps instead terms will be redefined so it becomes easier to prosecute incitement. Things are already shifting that way with swift justice for 'hate speech'. That could be taken further and say, automatically fining who retweets anything hurtful or hateful. Or order them to participate in a compulsory, residential rehabilitation programme at their own expense.

      The easy bit will be demanding that Big Tech bans this sort of thing, without actually defining in legislation what said 'thing' is.. Which is already sort of happening already, ie Trump's social media ban(s), even though he's still US President, at least for a few more days. Then again, Big Tech's supplying quite a few people for the new administration, so I'm sure they'll be advising light touch regulation.

    2. Fruit and Nutcase Silver badge

      Re: Section 230...the real issue

      Democratic Representative Bennie Thompson, who chairs the House Homeland Security Committee, said in a statement he was “deeply frustrated that it took a group of domestic terrorists storming the Capitol” for Facebook to take action and wondered “if the decision was an opportunistic one, motivated by the news of a Democratically controlled Congress.”

      https://uk.reuters.com/article/usa-election-socialmedia/update-6-facebook-blocks-trump-zuckerberg-calls-unrest-an-insurrection-idUKL4N2JI39L

      1. Jellied Eel Silver badge

        Re: Section 230...the real issue

        ...and wondered “if the decision was an opportunistic one, motivated by the news of a Democratically controlled Congress.”

        Opportunists you say? Here's something curious-

        https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-9120779/PICTURED-Trump-supporter-Air-Force-vet-shot-killed-storming-Capitol.html

        Witness John Sullivan (right) spoke to CNN's Anderson Cooper on Wednesday evening and suggested that Babbitt may have been shot by a police officer when she tired to climb through a broken window into an area that officers were blocking off

        And..

        John Sullivan, recorded a video of the aftermath, showing police with guns drawn and Babbitt lying in a pool of blood in a stairway inside the Capitol.

        Sullivan is the founder of the left-wing activist group Insurgence USA. He said he was not at the Capitol as part of the protest but did not specify what exactly brought him there.

        And Sullivan's video showed the uniformed police officers attempting to render aid almost immediately after the woman was shot and killed. I'm sure Sullivan will come up with a plausible explanation as to why he was there. Obviously not a far-right/pro-Trump supporter though. Perhaps he just likes collecting flags?

        And also in the DM's article, they've got an image of Buffalo Bellend, with a bearded chap on his right. Who may or may not have been identified as a Philly Antfa chap-

        https://www.zerohedge.com/political/questions-about-chaos-capitol-desperately-need-be-answered

        I'm less persuaded by the tatt though as it seems a styalised hammer & sickle, which would be an odd tatt for a 'far-right' person to display so prominently. Bellend themself (aka Jake Angeli) is more easily identifiable given his more distinctive tatts, and love of makeup & hats-

        https://twitter.com/KelemenCari/status/1346929418455842816?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw

        Apparently Bellend is an actor, so goes where the work is I guess..

  18. cmdrklarg

    We do have a national healthcare system, it's called Medicare. Problem is that to be eligible you need to be over 65 or disabled.

    1. Danny 2 Silver badge

      My commiseration Commander Klarg, but a national health service is from cradle to grave, not 65 to grave.

      My american ex is ever anxious despite having a lot of cash because one illness would bankrupt her. I'm sanguine despite covid because I live in a socialist hellhole with free medical care regardless of age.

    2. Lars Silver badge
      Coat

      "We do have a national healthcare system, it's called Medicare. ".

      No it's not as it's a lot more expensive and unpredicted.

      But it's more than nothing.

      "According to annual Medicare Trustees reports and research by the government's MedPAC group, Medicare covers about half of healthcare expenses of those enrolled. Enrollees almost always cover most of the remaining costs by taking additional private insurance and/or by joining a public Part C or Part D Medicare health plan.

      No matter which of those two options the beneficiaries choose—or if they choose to do nothing extra (around 1% according to annual Medicare Trustees reports over time), beneficiaries also have other healthcare-related costs. These additional so-called out of pocket (OOP) costs can include deductibles and co-pays; the costs of uncovered services—such as for long-term custodial, dental, hearing, and vision care; the cost of annual physical exams (for those not on Part C health plans that include physicals); and the costs related to basic Medicare's lifetime and per-incident limits.".

  19. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    So, back OT

    Obviously Biden has no tech plans then.

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